Cofibam conquers Antarctica

Antarctica located between the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans, enclosed by the Antarctic Ocean, is an area of 14 millions of square kilometers surrounding the South Pole.

Due to the intense cold and low temperatures, the area is permanently covered with ice and for all half life has unfavorable conditions, except for penguins, seals, whales and other animals.

The icy continent has received its first explorers only in 1912 and the relief mapping was made by air photos, which was, at that time, the only possible way to cross the ice. Brazil has subscribed the Antarctica Treaty in 1975. In the early 80s Brazil has inaugurated the Antarctica Station “Comandante Ferraz” (EACF).

In order to conquer the icy continent, the Brazilian Marine and Cofibam Engineers got together with the same purpose; to develop Power feed cables to supply the needs of the so called Antarctica Station Comandante Ferra.

The great difficult to make this project work was imposed by the local extreme characteristics, which it should be necessary to make studies to win the climate conditions and transportations.

The Cable responsible for the power generation should be carried by the Oceanographic Ship “Barão de Teffé” to a certain point and then be transferred to a helicopter and landed in an area full of stones and in an irregular soil. 

As the cables, for temperature between -40 to 60º Celsius, need a special insulator bearing such temperatures and said insulators have not mechanical characteristics proper to the environmental and transportation conditions, it was necessary to develop a special thermal insulator to resist to all such requirements. Cofibam Cables are in use for more than 15 year in Brazilian Antarctic Station.

Industrial Technical Manager, Hamilton Nakashima

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