Corrosion testing station above the Arctic Circle

Here, in the village of Dalniye Zelentsy, the Severnaya corrosion testing station, the only one above the Arctic Circle, still survives.

The station, which is a part of the Moscow Institute of Physical Chemistry and Electrochemistry, used to receive hundreds of testing orders from both defense and civilian facilities during the Soviet era, but in the mid-1990s the station was shut down.

The main testing ground. There are 17 testing units.

Many of these samples have been here for dozens of years.

Samples of various alloys.

Stress corrosion testing. Some of the samples have already cracked.

Every plate is marked. But the corrosion is destroying the marks.

More deteriorated samples.

The unique climate of the Subarctic allows to conduct tests on samples under extremely harsh weather conditions.

If the alloys can withstand this kind of weather it means that their use in a milder climate will be successful.

Back in 1985 AvtoVAZ (Russian automobile manufacturer) sent some samples of their product here, and apparently has forgotten all about it.

Some of the samples are in an excellent condition.

The coated metals, though, are deteriorating.

Another testing unit.

There are even some welding seam samples.

A plexiglass fighter jet cockpit hood endurance test.

I believe this to be a device for recording precipitation levels.

There is a non-operational weather station nearby.

At a distance, a bit closer to the sea, there are two more small testing grounds with samples.

One of them is completely destroyed, and this is how the other one looks.

Images by Victor Borisov, reproduced with permission

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