IMS Building

good folks
This winter 2005 construction project is the largest new facility constructed at Palmer Station since the 1980's development of the trades (carpenter) shop. Here it is on about 4 September--not coincidentally this photo also includes the 20 folks in the wintering crew.
sided and sunny
The above view from early August shows the nearly completed structure.
This view from GWR, taken in mid-May, shows the structure mostly enclosed. Below are a couple of conceptual views and some preliminary (2003) site plans.
uplifted science?
Looking northeast, with Arthur Harbor in the background.
evening at Palmer Station
A night view looking south. When the architect's concept was turned into reality, the structure didn't get elevated quite as much as these pictures suggest. Still, those windows will offer many of the dramatically distracting views of the local scenery for which Palmer Station is famous.
long range development
A composite plan and perspective drawing.
don't be square
The main floor plan. The 1440 square-foot structure will consolidate the projects now located in Clean Air and T5, while providing expanded facilities for the air sampling program...

When the building was being constructed, The IMS was a part of the DOE Environmental Measurements Laboratory (EML) operated jointly with the University of Miami as the Remote Atmospheric Measurements Program (RAMP). This project has been underway at Palmer Station for many years, monitoring for radionuclides from releases of radioactivity--most likely as an effort to sample for radioactive molecules from natural or artificial sources. The main artificial source of concern was nuclear weapons tests; monitoring for these was being conducted worldwide as part of the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty--hence the acronym CTBT--which also has been used to refer to this science project. Since at least the early 90's this project has been tended by the science tech; it occupied space in T5 (a 1998 photo of the bench from the old project website). Later, the project operation shifted to the DHS, and more recently the project has been operated by General Dynamics as a technical event (T-998). The operation includes high-volume air samplers and gamma ray spectrometers. The filters are initially checked locally; the filters and data are now sent back to the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO) headquarters in Vienna, Austria. There are several other Antarctic CTBT atmospheric and seismic monitoring stations including Pole. So far, the Antarctic stations have seen only naturally-occurring radionuclides, Be-7 (an isotope of beryllium) and Pb-210 (an isotope of lead).

The Palmer Station building had occasionally been referred to as "T6" as a reference to one of the structures it was to replace--T5 and CAF were to be demo'd after the new building was in full operation, but they are both still around.

Enough acronyms, back to reality...

A view of the back side of the structure taken the first week in May from the seismo vault.
back back yard
Another view a few days later from further up the glacier.
pipe dreams
A late May view up the utilidor from GWR. The facility is supposed to be heated by the glycol loop from the power plant. It is built of the same type of expanded polystyrene (EPS) panels used for the new Pole structures.
Another view of the front entrance side taken 19 June.
The September photo at the top of this page is by Kelvin Mar; the August photo is by manager James Slaughter and appeared in an August sitrep. The other photos are from Glenn Grant except for the utilidor view which was released by RPSC FEMC. The drawings and conceptual views (which were only preliminary and changed significantly during the design process) are from the full 2003 Palmer Area Users' Committee minutes (no longer online).