2005-06 Summer Photos - DSL Deconstruction/Completion

DSL with penthouse in March 2005

The Dark Sector Laboratory was to get its first science project...the BICEP submillimeter telescope. But first...the building had to be finished and approved for conditional occupancy. That wasn't to be as easy as it sounds...the structure had been originally designed in the late 1990s, and the construction had occurred in fits and starts over the intervening years. Most of the finish work to make the structure as it looked in my March 2005 photo (above) had been completed during the 2002-03 austral summer. The plans for the use of the building had changed a number of times over the years--originally it was to be a home for some of the projects located in the soon-to-be-shut-down Skylab...and/or one or more telescopes which would similarly require a penthouse with roof access hatches. Another plan was to relocate and upgrade the MAPO machine shop (for this reason, somehow a drill press was installed in the planned machine shop area at one point). The biggest unresolved construction issue resulted from changes in the USAP building and safety codes since the structure had been originally designed. Most significantly, the emergency egress from the penthouse was unsatisfactory...and after extensive studying and discussing, the decision was made to remove it. This would allow the BICEP telescope to be installed on the second floor, with sky access through the second floor roof which would be unobstructed by the penthouse.

And a few other modifications would be made...including reworking and strengthening the platforms and stairs and replacing that stairway with the wood handrails. Apparently the original ones were lost, damaged, or used elsewhere.

DSL in November 2004
Here's another "before" view, this one is from November 2004 (BP)

Penthouses had been seriously considered for all of the various Dark Sector buildings...as noted in the photos below:

MAPO Building w/ BICEP
Above, an interesting 2003 image from this UC Berkeley Cosmology page (archive) about BICEP, showing a conceptual view of that telescope in a penthouse...on MAPO! (Move your mouse over the image for the before vs after view).
concept model of BICEP installed in the penthouse
From a bit later, here's one of many conceptual design views of the BICEP telescope installed in the penthouse as seen in the photo above...this image is from the project engineering files.
Meanwhile, a similar penthouse had been seriously considered for the IceCube Laboratory building (which had just been moved into the Dark Sector in 2004-05 and was awaiting renovation). Next...a few more of my 2005 winter photos of the DSL penthouse and roof:
at the top of the stairs to the roof
I'm on the main building roof above the mechanical room and proposed bathroom, looking down the stairs to the second level...and MAPO and the station.
roof walkway past the penthouse
Looking southeast along the walkway in front of the penthouse. That's ARO and the met tower in the distance.
Penthouse interior rooms
Here's a look at the interior. There was a large central area with four experiment rooms, two on each side. They had sliding doors, roof hatches, and were painted black to reduce light interference to experiments.
DSL penthouse interior
Another look at the interior...we're looking west toward the vestibule which contained that window--the only one. You guessed it, my flash didn't go off.
future BICEP telescope
Back outside, here's the east end of the roof, where BICEP would happen.
DSL roof
And the southeast corner of the roof.
DSL in October 2005
And back on the ground, here's another look at DSL from another angle. I took this one in October.
BICEP mount lift
The summer work didn't really get started until after I left. Here, at the end of November, the penthouse siding has been stripped, and the crane mast has already been relocated from the roof to the second level platform. Oh yeah, the BICEP mount is being installed--more on that project later (YT).
DSL stairs gone/penthouse roof removal
Not long afterward, the penthouse roof was being removed. And that wooden access stairway had been removed (CC).
penthouse removal

By the beginning of December, the penthouse was almost gone--looks like the window was the last thing to go. And the permanent stairs had been installed (CC).
roof completion
After the penthouse was gone...a new roof surface was installed (KWY).
BICEP shield and roof surface
The section closer to the BICEP shield (not under the penthouse footprint) was further along (CW) (APL).
working on the BICEP calibration mast
By the end of December the nonskid walking surface had been installed...here folks are walking on it while working on the BICEP calibration mast (CC).
DSL rework almost done
A view from the ground in mid-December...almost done. (YT) (APL).
backside of DSL
A view of the completed roof rework from the back side (KWY).
Looking from another angle. Not all the work was done... the addition for the South Pole Telescope is visible on the right side of DSL (KWY).

Photo credits: (BP) Brian Pechan; (YT) Yuki Takahashi (archive link); (CC) H. Cynthia Chiang (archive link); (KWY) Ki Won Yoon; and (CW) Carlton Walker. Photos labeled (APL) are from the Antarctic Photo Library.

Next, let's have a closer look at the BICEP telescope installation.

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