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Antarctica Project Underway

Progress is being made in Antarctica as Ocean Kinetics assist with the demolition and rebuild of a new wharf at the Rothera Research Station.

Ocean Kinetics were chosen by BAM International to carry out the underwater works on the new wharf at Rothera Antarctica which is being built over the next two Antarctic seasons. It's set to provide berthing and unloading for a new polar research vessel, RRS Sir David Attenborough.

Ship with equipment delivering to site. MV Wisconsin is seen streaming through broken ice behind the ice breaker.
Concept drawing of new modular wharf showing prefabricated steel support frames being lifted into place.

The current wharf is too small for the new vessel being built, so old wharf is being demolished and rebuilt to form a new deepwater berth.

Ocean Kinetics’ diving team mobilised to site in mid-January and is carrying out underwater works to demolish the old wharf and construct of the new one.

Once completed, the new wharf, is set to provide berthing and unloading for a new polar research vessel called the RRS Sir David Attenborough.

BAM oversaw the loading of plant, 83 containers, permanent and temporary materials and 1,000t of steelwork onto the MV Wisconsin at Teesport in North Yorkshire.The last of 83 containers was loaded onto the MV Wisconsin at Teesport before heading south to Antarctica. Included in the equipment was Ocean Kinetics purpose-built catamaran and all equipment for the underwater works.

The RRS Sir David Attenborough is expected to become operational in 2019.

Ocean Kinetics diver entering water in anti-predator cage for protection from leopard seals and killer whales.

The Ocean Kinetics diving team will remain at the station for a period of five months and will return home in May before travelling out for completion of the works in the Antarctic summer of 2020.

As part of the sub-contract Ocean Kinetics have designed and constructed a purpose built diving support vessel that will allow for the extreme weather conditions and allow rapid launching and retrieval from the sea to address the risk of adverse weather and icebergs.

Regular updates will follow in the coming weeks.

Find out more about Ocean Kinetics' previous work in Antarctica by viewing the case study.

Demolition of the old wharf
Overview showing airstrip, old wharf, accommodation blocks and works site.

Part of the Ocean Kinetics team relaxing after another busy day.