Clinging to the side of a mountain at 3,507 metres altitude, a repeater station in the Alps is working day and night to provide radio coverage for mountain rescuers. Only a station on Little Matterhorn is located higher, at about 3,800 metres.
Countless mountaineers in the Swiss Canton of Valais can now feel safer since a remarkable new Tetrapol repeater station came on line in summer 2016. Built at more than 3,500 metres, the site is in a hard-to-access area of glaciers and took more than 18 months to build, with construction only possible during the summer months.
Part of the Swiss Border Guard (SBG) network, all equipment is housed in a new building next to an 85 year old mountain hut owned by the Swiss Alpine Club.
The new building is almost totally covered with solar panels and houses batteries with a capacity of 1,000 Ah, enough for ten days’ continuous operation even in unfavourable weather. Excess energy generated is used in the mountain hut, which has also been modernised by Swiss Alpine Club to make the solitary life of the hut’s caretaker more comfortable.