UK's space age Antarctic base can slide across ice

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Associated Press

Posted on February 6, 2013 at 8:32 AM

Updated Wednesday, Feb 6 at 10:05 AM

LONDON (AP) — Researchers say Britain's new Antarctic base is movable — capable of sliding across the ice on ski-clad stilts.

The innovation will enable researchers to keep one step ahead of the southern continent's shifting ice and pounding snows.

The Halley VI Research Station is located on the Brunt Ice Shelf, a floating sheet of ice at the edge of the South Atlantic and becomes fully operational later this month.

It's the sixth in a line of research stations based at the site, most of which had to be abandoned after they were crushed by the weight of the polar snow.

British Antarctic Survey spokesman Paul Seagrove said Wednesday that the latest incarnation — consisting of sci-fi-looking modules raised off the ground by hydraulic stilts — should last a bit longer.

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