The accumulation of drifting snow around buildings in regions of severe climate has important implications on their design and location. This paper studies one such building, at a station run by the British Antarctic Survey and located on the Brunt Ice Shelf at the edge of the Antarctic continent. Four previous stations have been built in the area, the buildings of which were designed to become covered in snow and all have been crushed within a few years. The current station, Halley V, consists of three buildings which are all raised from the ice shelf by means of legs. They were designed in such a way that the action of the wind blowing underneath the buildings would keep them-clear of snow.
This paper describes a model which predicts the shape and position of drift formation, and then compares the results with those observed at Halley. This model is a first attempt to address the problem and as such the paper can be considered to be a progress report; improvements arc currently being made as part of continuing research. It is found that there is some qualitative agreement and possible reasons for a few quantitative discrepancies are discussed. Both the model and the true data show clearly that the new design is very effective in prolonging the useful life of the buildings.