Arctic Drifter keeps on rolling

by Mark R

This is the Arctic Drifter, it is a very different mobile research station.

Instead of being some sort of RV thing with wheels or tank treads, the whole thing is one big ball! As you can see from this image, this ball-shaped room has some weird cushions on the outside so it blows up like a giant volleyball.

Apparently this is made so it can roll around by Arctic winds, and then collect data along the way. Hopefully it won’t fall prey to the snowball effect. By the way, that whole room is on a gimbal that keeps the food on the table while it is rolling along.

In case the researchers do want to actually stop, they can deflate the cushions around the ball-shaped room, and the steel cage should stay in one place.

Clearly, the Arctic winds must be pretty strong if you can keep rolling along like this. In all honesty, I feel like I could live here very comfortably. Unless the heater broke down, which leads to the question of where does this thing get its power from? Perhaps a big battery?

This is still an idea from New York based Stuido Les Betes, and I wonder if anyone has an Arctic research experiment that would require this big ball?

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2 reviews or comments

techqc Says: August 26, 2010 at 10:50 pm

Does not appear to be big enough –
if the outside bags were floatation
and made out of sufficiently tough material
it would be an absolute rip out on the open seas.
Which is where it would end up if set up
anywhere along the coast of Antarctica.

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