MarsNews.com

Cold Comforts: Antarctic Research Bases Are Seriously Self-Sustaining Wired

One of the few inland bases occupied year-round, the two-nation station is built for long-term habitation in the most extreme conditions. The buildings’ drumlike contours maximize thermal efficiency, while a wastewater system developed by the European Space Agency recycles water from showers and sinks. The space agency’s interest in Concordia extends beyond the plumbing: Because the isolation, confinement, and cramped quarters here resemble conditions on a long space journey, the ESA is studying the physiological and psychological effects that life at the station has on its 15 winter residents. There are no plans for a spinoff reality TV show.