The great ice chasm escape: GreasePak back in action in Antartica

Antartica, stock image

Halley VI is the award winning, innovative research station situated in Antarctica. It has huge international importance and is part of a global network providing reliable information on the atmosphere and how it is changing (it was at Halley that the ozone hole was first discovered in 1985!). So vital for the study of pressing global problems, it is important that avoidable drain blockages and the like do not jeopardise the smooth running of operations, especially when Halley has bigger issues to contend with – it has recently relocated 23km to avoid being cut off from the ice by a chasm!

Halley’s series of 8 modules has just been towed, thanks to each pod having ski-fitted hydraulic legs, to its new home in Antarctica. A process that took 13 weeks to complete. Now ready for reoccupation this month, Mechline’s GreasePak can resume its role supporting this unique setup.

In the peak summer season some 70 people reside at the station, all of whom need feeding. It is the job of the on-board chef to cook a huge breakfast, hot lunch and large dinner for everyone: It is the job of Mechline’s GreasePak to keep the kitchen drains clear and free flowing.

GreasePak is the most powerful and only BBA (British Board of Agrément) approved bioremediation dosing system on the market. It prevents the build-up of Fats, Oils and Grease (FOG) in drainage systems, which can otherwise result in serious blockages. GreasePak works by employing a powerful bio-enzymatic fluid consisting of over 500 million bugs per gram to permanently breakdown FOG into irreversible simpler compounds, which most importantly cannot reform down the line.

GreasePak Dosing Module

GreasePak has been in place on Halley since 2013. It was chosen for Antarctica’s unique and fragile environment not only because it is highly effective, but also because it is completely natural and non-harmful. Where other grease management systems may trap FOG and create an unpleasant haven for infestation and noxious odours, GreasePak is environmentally friendly, trouble-free, easy to clean and actually prevents drains from smelling – ideal when you are confined to a ‘living module’ within -10⁰C degree surroundings (the average summer temperature).

The fluid refills are easy to store and change and the unit itself has few working parts, making GreasePak very easy to install and operate. A built-in alarm system also reminds operators when they need to change the bio-fluid, prompting timely and efficient maintenance. Staff have very little to do or worry about when GreasePak is in place, meaning time can be dedicated to more pressing issues; climate change maybe? With GreasePak you can rest assured that kitchen operations won’t go down, at least not as a result of blocked drains.

Minimising the impact on the environment is important to the researchers at Halley. Neil Coombes, Group Commercial Director at MODO-CKD comments, “We have sent four GreasePaks in total to the site in Antarctica. It was the obvious choice for several reasons, mainly because it is effective, easy to install and requires very little maintenance. Importantly, GreasePak’s fluid is 100% natural and environmentally safe.”

GreasePak is a trusted grease management system that has been proven effective at many sites. It is incredibly versatile and can be tailored to suit a variety of locations, literally poles apart! For one, the dosing level can be adjusted and thus adapted to meet the specific needs and style of cooking of a particular site. Mechline are always happy to provide an advisory service and help implement the correct technology, or combination of technologies, into kitchens, however unique their characteristics.