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Antarctic & Marine Engineering

The Antarctic & Marine Engineering (AME) Department  is a small group of engineers dedicated to the technical support of science in the Antarctic. Our responsibilities are wide ranging, covering the design and building of new equipment, installation, support and operation of equipment in the field.

International European Project for Ice Coring in Antarctica (EPICA) project: Dronning Maud Land reconnaissance phase.  Scientists remove a core from the barrel of an ice core drill: analysis of the ice, which fell as snow more than 1000 years ago, will reveal changes in climate and the composition of the atmosphere.
International European Project for Ice Coring
Our workplace varies from Cambridge to Antarctica and all points in between, on board our ships and aircraft, an Antarctic research station, or in a pyramid tent somewhere on the Antarctic continent. Modern science research inevitably relies heavily on technology to achieve it's objectives. Hostile environments such as the polar regions, where reliability of the equipment is paramount, place significant demands on equipment that are unparallelled anywhere else on the planet. It follows that the demands and constraints with regard to the application of engineering technology are significant.

AME functions within Technology & Engineering at BAS and is primarily responsible for providing this engineering expertise and support. The groups main role is to provide all three science divisions (and operations), core engineering support within the framework of the British Antarctic programme.

This diverse requirement means that the group must be adaptable and flexible enough to encompass a wide range of challenges. AME has much experience and expertise in the design, development, manufacture and support of equipment used in BAS programmes and can call on the disciplines of electronic, mechanical, software and communications engineering to achieve its objectives.

The groups main function is to develop systems for science data acquisition purposes.The  requirements of these systems are often quite diverse and usually unique in their design. Much of the equipment is specially developed and is application specific. However, the group has developed equipment that has applications in other areas and where practical this technology has been utilised on other programmes.

AME also has a support role to fulfil. The group provides support during many science programmes and has key responsibilities for marine science cruises and airborne survey work. Coupled with this is a requirement to provide engineering support in areas such as communications and systems monitoring. AME has a very wide remit at BAS and is dedicated to providing a high quality engineering service to its users, whilst maintaining
BGS deep-tow boomer being being deployed from the stern of RRS James Clark Ross (cruise JR01)
BGS deep-tow boomer being being deployed from the stern of RRS James Clark Ross - cruise JR01
quality, flexibility and efficiency.

These pages provide a guide to the resources and services we provide to scientific groups within BAS as well as general information about the Antarctic & Marine Engineering Department.

Please do not hesitate to contact Steve Bremner or any of the engineers for further details.