BRITISH ANTARCTIC SURVEY

Sustainable construction in Antarctica helps advance climate research

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British Antarctic Survey and its partners finished construction on the external skeleton of the Discovery Building, a new science and operations facility in Antarctica, in 2022. (video: 4:45 min.)

In the most isolated, remote part of the world, the Antarctic Infrastructure Modernization Program (AIMP) is underway. The AIMP is part of a long-term UK government investment to modernize its research facilities in the Polar Regions to support cutting-edge climate, biodiversity, and ocean research. AIMP partners British Antarctic Survey (BAS), BAM, Ramboll, Sweco, and their extended supply chains rely on strong collaboration and advanced technology to deliver the projects in Antarctica—subject to the icy continent’s extreme weather, time-bound building season, and strict sustainability standards to protect the pristine environment.

The project team is building the new facilities using sustainable construction techniques and smart engineering to meet environmental goals. Autodesk Revit and BIM 360 enable them to create and share 3D BIM models to deliver better constructability and minimize waste. Using Autodesk Insight with Revit, the design team develops carbon-informed designs that have saved 700 tons of whole-life carbon emissions on the project so far. With a “build it before it’s built” mindset, the entire team uses digital tools to plan and visualize the project down to the last detail—so they can efficiently execute on a jobsite halfway around the world.