Photo courtesy of Dwight Bohnet, National Science Foundation
Supporting scientific research on the highest, driest, coldest, windiest and emptiest place on Earth requires exceptional logistics and planning expertise. A few of the unique challenges include managing the world’s longest supply chain, building airfields on ice and snow, working in the world’s worst weather conditions, and managing remote field camps, ice-breaking research vessels and the largest research stations and laboratories on the cold continent.
In 2011, Lockheed Martin was selected by the National Science Foundation (NSF) as the prime contractor for the United States Antarctic Program (USAP). The program enables universities, research institutions and other nation’s programs to conduct valuable scientific research in the region.
Lockheed Martin is working with NSF to implement a cost-effective, streamlined infrastructure for managing elements such as work stations, medical facilities, communications, transportation, shipping, emergency response, housing, food services, science support, environmental protection, research vessels, construction projects and remote field camp support.
NSF and the USAP have been an anchoring U.S. presence in Antarctica since 1956 through its active and influential scientific research program, supporting fundamental discovery research that can only be done there and studying the Antarctic and its interactions with the rest of the planet. The program goals include: understanding the region and how its ecosystems depend on the polar environment; understanding its effects on (and responses to) global processes such as climate; and using the region as a platform for fundamental research in every scientific discipline. Antarctica's remoteness and extreme climate make it a unique and natural laboratory environment.
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