The Hillary Field Centre (HFC) at Scott Base, the southernmost building project in the world, has undergone a $6.2 million upgrade over a period of three years. The project was completed on site early this year, on time and under budget.

Kicking off in January 2015, the upgraded HFC has provided high-quality on-site science facilities that will allow year around on ice scientific analysis.

Our key objective was to enhance the science that is conducted in Antarctica and the Southern Ocean.

The project added three new internal laboratories,  a mobile container laboratory including a "plug and play" docking facility, doubled the field deployment preparation area with a warm porch, increased freezer space for field samples, added a workstation area for up to 15 people, three additional meeting rooms and a breakout space for cross fertilisation within the Antarctic science community.  This will provide additional capacity for specialised external laboratories and other facilities for effective science in Antarctica.

Antarctica New Zealand is committed to ensuring New Zealand scientists have access to world-class research facilities at Scott Base. That’s why we work closely to understand the needs of the science community, both now and into the future, to ensure Scott Base is a fit for purpose, world-class research station.

progress of the warm porch building
Progress on the Container dock extension


The HFC reconfiguration project has been undertaken in a two stage approach:

Stage 1 (Summer 2014/15 and Winter 2015)

Hanger refurbishment (summer 2014/15)

Storage facilities solution (summer 2014/15)

Internal refurbishment of HFC (winter 2015)

 Stage 2 (Summer 2015/16 and Winter/Summer 2016)

Geotechnical investigation and anchor testing (October 2015)

Drill, blasting, cut and fill earthworks (December 2015 – January 2016)

Foundation and enclosure of warm porches (January – April 2016)

Internal fit out (August-December 2016)