China’s Great Wall Research Station is located on King George Island in the Antarctic. Here – under extreme conditions – Volvo Penta’s diesel engines generate electricity and heat that are essential for sustaining life.
The Great Wall Research Station, constructed by the Chinese State, has been in operation since 1985. As many as 40 researchers and other personnel conduct research at the station in disciplines such as glaciology, meteorology, geology and marine biology.
The base, which consists of ten buildings with a combined area of 2,600 square meters, is essentially self-sufficient, served by only two seaborne transports annually and a maximum of one flight per month.
Weather conditions are extreme year-round, with temperatures plummeting to minus 50°C!
Since three years ago, electricity, warm water and heat have been supplied by three diesel generator units, each powered by a Volvo Penta 7-liter diesel engine with the model designation TD710G.
These six-cylinder diesel engines provide extremely high operational reliability. Conventional cooling systems have been replaced by heat exchangers, so that the engines can also be used to heat the base and supply warm water.
In a normal situation, only one engine/generator is used at a time, the others remaining in reserve to provide additional capacity if needed.
The Volvo Penta engines have now been in operation at the base for three years (a total of approximately 11,000 hours) without operating breakdowns.