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Building up the Arctic underground

Posting in Architecture

A team of students from London's School of Architecture are proposing the construction of underground dens in the Arctic where researchers can work and live.

Working in the Arctic requires specialized equipment to deal with extremely cold temperatures. And because you can't check-in to a Hilton, researchers get by residing in tents or makeshift cabins.

But now a team of graduate students from London's Architectural Association School of Architecture are proposing a new type of Arctic residence, underground.

The team, known as the Polar Ants, wants to build an Arctic Research Facility that is essentially a network of dens similar to those of polar bears. To build such structures, they will use light-sensitive 'Antbots' to find and extract terrain that is suitable for underground dens.

Treehugger reports, "The project aims to create a 'self-regulating, self-contained and autonomous' polar architecture that also has a unique organizational aspect to it, say the designers."

Designing habitable structures in the polar regions is a matter of growing importance as researchers continue to explore these environments to study new organisms in the ice and the impacts of climate change.

Proposed Arctic Research Facility Would Use Robots To Burrow Into Ice  [Treehugger]

Photo via Polar Ants

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Amy Kraft

Weekend Editor

Contributing Editor Amy Kraft is a freelance writer based in New York. She has written for New Scientist and DNAinfo and has produced podcasts for Scientific American's 60-Second-Science. She holds degrees from CUNY Graduate School of Journalism and the University of Illinois at Chicago. Follow her on Twitter. Disclosure