Warehousing Provider Collaborates With Smithsonian to Prepare Greenland Telescope - Global Trade Magazine
  February 19th, 2016 | Written by

Warehousing Provider Collaborates With Smithsonian to Prepare Greenland Telescope

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  • Thule Air Base, Greenland, only receives one shipment per year, making timing vital to the Greenland telescope project.
  • Greenland telescope project allowed WDS to showcase its project cargo capabilities.
  • The pre-shipment assembly and testing for the Greenland telescope project has been taking place at the WDS facility.

The National Science Foundation (NSF) and the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory (SAO) have actively been studying the topic of black holes for some time. In partnership with the Academia Sinica Institute of Astronomy & Astrophysics (ASIAA), the SAO has initiated a project to erect a new radio telescope in Greenland that will triangulate with the two global radio telescopes located in Hawaii and Chile. By synchronizing the three telescopes, they will act as one larger telescope in the hopes of capturing an image of a black hole, proving Einstein’s theory of relativity.

Prior to the triangulation of the telescopes, the project requires a complex, in-depth assembly, shipment and re-assembly that are integral to the project’s overall completion. To execute these stages of the project, trusted partners with a reputation for efficiency and world-class service, were needed. The solution was to partner with World Distribution Services (WDS) and their Norfolk, Virginia team.

“WDS Norfolk was a significant find because of their proximity to the Port of Virginia,” said Timothy Norton, manager of the Greenland Telescope Project. “Thule Air Base, Greenland, only receives one shipment per year, making the timing of sending over the telescope pieces vital to the progression of this initiative. In addition to the location advantage that WDS Norfolk gives us, the process of working with the WDS team has been exceptional. Not only have they been extremely accommodating to all of our requests, but they have diligently ensured that we are sticking to our timeline on this important project.”

John Morrow, vice president of World Distribution Services, said his team is excited to work on a project of this magnitude. “The project allows WDS the opportunity to showcase our project cargo capabilities,” he commented. “WDS has successfully participated in several large global projects and consistently delivers exceptional results that include cost savings, increased timelines and superior service levels. We are proud to have been selected for this initiative in which we’ve been able to collaborate with a wide range of partners from project contractors, equipment providers, and government officials.”

The pre-shipment assembly and testing that has been taking place at the WDS facility will ensure that all components of the telescope are able to sustain the cold climate of Greenland. Following the pre-assembly, all components will be shipped to the Thule Air Base in late July or early August where they will be reassembled, placed on oversized sleds and moved 10,500 feet inland, where the telescope will be permanently housed within the arctic circle of Greenland. In tandem with the telescope assembly, the National Science Foundation is building the Greenland Science Summit – a state-of-the-art research facility in Greenland for scientists, researchers and additional staff to call home throughout the duration of the telescope triangulation study.

World Distribution Services (WDS) is a provider of global supply chain solutions, specializing in warehousing and logistics and headquartered in Cleveland, Ohio.

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