Antarctic Research Bases: Much Cooler Than My Apartment

Ever wonder what it’s like living in the coldest places on Earth? Pretty awesome from the looks of it.

Several countries ranging from the US to South Africa have established research facilities in the Antarctic over the years but building these bases is no walk in the park. They face obstacles that are unlike anything the rest of the world sees, such as being covered in 30 feet of snow or having the facility’s whole foundation drift into the sea. Engineers have gotten creative in facing these challenges.

The US-occupied Amundsen-Scott South Pole Station is perched on 36 stilts to lift it 10 feet off the ground. The wing-shaped facility also allows wind to flow over and under it to clear out snow. The UK-owned Halley VI base looks straight out of Star Wars. This facility is built on top of skis allowing it to be towed back to safety when the ice shelf it sits on shifts.

Next time you think your neighborhood is bad, think again…


Written by Ricky Brandano

Ricky Brandano is a web designer and Celtics fan from the Boston, MA area. Check out his work at

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  • Check out that’s the site of the Belgian base on antarctica. It’s pretty similar and it’s named ‘Princess Elisabeth’.

  • Thanks for the link! That base is featured in the Wired article but it’s great to get some more information on it.

  • Harry

    Image needs more snowspeeders!