Antarctic Station Casey – A Brief History

Casey station, on the coast of Antarctica at 66o 17′S, 110o 32′E, 3430 km southwest of Hobart was established by Australia in 1969.

The Modern Casey Station Antarctica

The first photo below shows the present station which was commissioned in 1988. The living quarters or “Red Shed” can accommodate up to 42 expeditioners, it has a fully equipped kitchen, mess and medical suite, along with a small cinema and comfortable recreation area’s. The station also consists of Carpentry, Electrical, Plumbing and Mechanical workshops all under the one roof. Emergency vehicle shelter “EVS” which houses the fire tender and hyperbaric chamber. Store “Green Store” which houses a warm store, refrigerated freezer, and ambient temperature store. Main power house “MPH” and Emergency power house “EPH”. Operations building “Ops”, which accommodates Communications, Meteorology, and Station leader. Hydrogen balloon filling shed for meteorology, Science building. And the ANARESAT hut and radome, this provides the main link of communications with the outside world, it provides telephone and internet access via the intelsat satellite system.

Casey Station Antarctica panoramic view

Panoramic view of Casey station Antarctica

The Casey Tunnel

The second photo below is of the original Casey station established in 1969, It replaced the nearby station of Wilkes, built by the USA in 1957 and handed over to Australia in 1959. Casey station was named after Richard Gavin Gardiner Casey (1890-1976), Federal minister responsible for Australia’s Antarctic work during the 1950′s. Known as the Tunnel, it was a series of huts built on a long raised platform joined by a long tunnel with the curved side of the tunnel facing the prevailing wind (east). The radical design meant that most of the station life could be conducted under shelter and thus improve working efficiency, it also increased the life span of the station by avoiding damaging snow build up, the snow blew under the building rather than build up against it. It is rumored however that the expeditioners suffered from “cabin fever” a result of being indoors for long periods of time, and actually had a negative effect on productivity and the well being of the expeditioners.

The original Casey Station "The Tunnel" 1969 - 1988

The original Casey Station The Tunnel 1969 - 1988

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