Over the 2015/2016 summer work commenced on the new hydroponics building for our station.
The footings were all that remained of the old hydro building that had been dismantled in prior seasons, so this was the starting point of the construction.
First the steel floor beams which support the container structure were installed, then the insulated panels to the underside of the floor beams were installed before the containers (two 20 footers and two 10 footers) were craned into position.
With the containers in position and locked down to the floor beam the cladding could commence. The cladding is the same 150mm thick insulated panels that they use for cool rooms back home but we want to keep the warm air in not out. With the wall cladding done, the trusses were made for the roof to provide fall so that any snow melt would run off the roof rather than pool (as it does in the TAD building). The trusses support the insulated panels that line the roof of hydro.
Site services were next to be connected to the building. With all the cladding on and the cappings, trims, stairs and door installed, it was the internal electrical rough-in next and then the internal linings. We started on this work but were stalled by the non-arrival of voyage 3 and the early retrieval of the summer crew, who had achieved most of the work to date.
When finished, the new hydro will produce easily three times the produce that we now get from the temporary hydro (see last week’s story).
Heaps of thanks to all the guys and gals that worked on this project, they did an outstanding job, had an eye for detail, always had a great ‘can do’ attitude, and were a pleasure to work and laugh with… to be continued.