Signy station

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Coordinates: 60 ° 43 ′ 0 ″  S , 45 ° 36 ′ 0 ″  W.

Relief Map: Antarctica
Signy station
The Signy station in 2006.

Signy Station is a United Kingdom Antarctica station . Signy was built in 1947 as a meteorological station. It was used from March 18, 1947 to April 13, 1996. Until 1995, Signy Station was the center of biological research for the British Antarctic Survey (BAS). In 1995 the maritime part of the research was relocated to Rothera station . Since the summer of 1996–97, Signy has only been used in the summer season.


The station is located on Signy Island , a small sub-Antarctic island in the southern Orkney Islands . It is located at Berntsen Point and overlooks Factory Cove.


The original building was erected at Berntsen Point and was named "Clifford House", named after Sir Miles Clifford , Governor of the Falkland Islands from 1947 to 1954. In the first years of its existence, the station was systematically expanded. Several laboratories and the main hut were built by 1950 .

In the summer of 1955, the main house, Tønsberg House, named after the whaling company Tønsbergs Hvalfangeri , was built on the site of the company's old whaling station. New living spaces, laboratories and diving facilities have also been added.

The diving and laboratory facilities were renewed again in the summer of 1980. For this purpose, a completely new building was built, the Sørlle House. It is named after the Sørlle family. Petter Sørlle (1884–1933) was a whaling captain who explored the southern Orkney Islands and named Signy Island after his wife. The Sørlle House was demolished in May 1995.

From 1996 to 1997 the last conversion to a pure summer station for terrestrial and freshwater biology took place. The new main building, again called Sørlle House, has living rooms, laboratories and offices.

Todays use

Signy Base is currently open from November to April (i.e. in the Antarctic summer) and accommodates a maximum of eight to ten people. Automatic cameras record ice conditions at Factory Cove year-round to continue the 50-year record that began during the station's previous year-round use.

The station also collects data on seal and penguin biology for CCAMLR.

Two generators that run on oil are used for power supply . Signy is supplied with supplies and materials via ships that land there five times per season.

Web links

Commons : Signy Station  - collection of pictures, videos and audio files