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Supporting Science at the Bottom of the World
Contracted to the National Science Foundation, Raytheon Polar Services provides operations, construction, maintenance and staff to sustain and support research programs at three year-round U.S. locations, numerous field camps, and on two research vessels in the Antarctic region.

Working in Antarctica — on average the highest, driest, coldest and emptiest continent — means dealing with extreme weather conditions and extremely limited logistics. Missions require maximizing limited resupply options, relying on integrated long-term schedules, providing specialized training, working closely with the client and other related agencies, and adapting quickly to changing circumstances.

Polar Services recently finished building a new elevated research station at the South Pole, where it tests systems that NASA may use in missions to the moon and Mars, collect critical data on climate change, and built premier telescopes and the largest-ever neutrino detector. They must withstand extreme temperatures, a short operating season, a 10,000-mile logistics chain, and a six-month day and night — all while operating one of the largest and geographically dispersed and technically complex 24x7 communications infrastructures in the world.

Valerie Carroll