Designing for extreme conditions, Maidstone

5 December, 2017 | 18:00 - 20:00

Venue address:

Oakwood House
John Wigan Suite
Oakwood Park Venue
Maidstone ME16 8AE
United Kingdom
A pioneering relocatable polar science research station
A pioneering relocatable polar science research station

About this event

Hugh Broughton of Hugh Broughton Architects will captivate his audience with this talk that explains the design of his extraordinary polar projects, part lecture and part school lesson. Hugh covers architecture, science, geography and glaciology with a few holiday photos thrown in.

Focusing on the British station Halley VI, the first fully re-locatable research station in the world, Hugh highlights the challenges faced and the solutions achieved in the most extreme, remote and environmentally sensitive locations on the planet.

Halley is the most southerly science research station operated by the British Antarctic Survey (BAS) and is located on the 150 metre thick floating Brunt Ice Shelf, which moves 400 metres per annum towards the sea. Snow levels rise by 1 metre every year and the sun does not rise for 105 days during winter.

Temperatures drop to -56⁰C and winds blow in excess of 160kph. Access by ship and plane is limited to a 3-month summer window. A research station has been occupied continuously at Halley since 1957 but over the years earlier versions of the station encountered problems as their legs were fixed in the ice and they could not be moved. In 2004 BAS and RIBA organised an international competition to select designers for a new station.

This was won by Hugh Broughton Architects and AECOM with a modular design concept, developed to meet the client's key objectives.

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