Horizon: Antarctica Ice Station Rescue

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Horizon: Antarctica Ice Station Rescue

Series 2017



Nobody has ever tried to move an ice station before. But the British Antarctic Survey base called Halley VI was designed – through some brilliant modular architecture – with exactly that possibility in mind. Each building in the Lego-ish structure has skis on, so it can be towed across the snow to somewhere else on the 130m-thick Brunt ice shelf. Just as well, because a huge fissure in the ice is threatening to cut the station adrift, so it needs to be relocated 23km away.

Film-maker Natalie Hewit follows the extraordinary process and captures some of the characters who live on the edge of the world. (“It’s like a beach holiday minus the beach,” muses one scientist.) People have been collecting data here every day for the past 60 years – we see the very machine that spotted the hole in the ozone layer in 1985. And while Hewit is filming, there’s an ugly development that imperils the whole operation.


BBC film-maker Natalie Hewit spent three months in Antarctica following the work of the everyday heroes who have been challenged to move a vital polar research station, Halley VI. Built on the Brunt Ice Shelf, it sits far beyond the Antarctic shoreline, but a crevasse in the surrounding ice threatens to send the station adrift.

Cast & Crew

Producer Natalie Hewit
Series Editor Steve Crabtree
Documentary Science