Modernized Enterprise Terminal (MET) Site Preparation, Eareckson Air Station

Modernized Enterprise Terminal (MET) Site Preparation, Eareckson Air Station

Shemya, Alaska

USACE Alaska District contracted Ahtna as Prime Contractor to perform design-build services on Shemya, AK (also known as Eareckson Air Station). The purpose of the project is to provide infrastructure upgrades in preparation for new MET antennas. In this logistically and collaboratively challenging location, Ahtna has completed our work on time and to the satisfaction of the USACE, which has led to the award of additional work.

Prior to removing the existing (legacy) antennas, the Government placed a backup antenna known as a Restoral Terminal (RT) to hold the mission during cutover. While the Government provided and erected the RT, Ahtna installed an engineered guy wires system to anchor the antenna dish and supporting trailers to the earth. Shemya is known for sustained winds of exceeding strength during the winter months.  The Ahtna team engineered the guy-wire system early in the summer of 2018 in anticipation of this requirement. This installation was meant to be temporary, however it is capable of long-term performance and is still in service at this time two years later. To date, the guy wires have weathered two winters and many storms including some action from Typhoon Hagibis in October 2019.

Ahtna managed several specialty consultants who provided:

  • Installation of a Tier 4 electrical generator including all electrical work of the 2017 fabrication; uninterruptible power supply (UPS) installation, 2018 electrical FEEDS, and 2018 FIMS and monitoring.
  • Fabrication of the module including oversight of HEMP services; preparation of shipping; and testing pick and rigging requirements
  • EPI HEMP testing including CH2M shield install and welding; EPI field installation and testing; modifications to the existing HEMP and test; as well as EPI testing of 52A shelter and reconfiguration of all HEMP deliverables.

In 2019 Ahtna is mobilizing personnel, via charted Gulfstream G4-SP, to the project to deconstruct two 68-feet diameter radomes, so that the legacy antennas can be removed and the new 52B(V)5 antennas can be installed by TYAD, with support from Ahtna’s 230-ton Manitowoc crane that was mobilized specifically to support radome and antenna deconstruction and reinstallation.

Also, in Building 585 Ahtna will self-perform major interior upgrades to accommodate the new MET EEB, (formerly WCSE). Ahtna’s upgrade work includes a newly designed critical power distribution center (EATON Hot-tie cabinet, Uninterrupted Power Supply, and associated equipment) with new HEMP shielded critical power and non-critical power from the new Critical Power shelter, (formerly ECSE).

The emergency power generation equipment (micro turbines) housed in the existing HEMP shielded Endurable Power Shelters (EPS), are aging and considered unreliable for the new MET Large Fixed Terminal (LFT). As an option to our contract, if exercised by the Government, Ahtna will replace the legacy micro-turbine emergency power generation system with current generation micro turbine generators utilizing Government Facility Sustainability funding.

While Ahtna worked on the MET design development with the relevant Government stakeholders other operational requirements had to be addressed with the US Air Force 611 Air Support Squadron (611 CES/CEN) based at JBER, Anchorage, Alaska. The 611 CES/CEN currently operates and maintains Eareckson Air Station (EAS). The day-to-day operations are carried out by their Base Operations Services (BOS) Contractor while facility security is under the Security personnel of 611 ASUS/SFM. Ahtna continues to work closely with all these entities though substantial completion in 2022.

Ahtna self-performed all earth works (concrete, trenching, anchoring etc.), all demolition, all carpentry construction, coordinate all logistics, provide design oversight, provide on-island quality assurance, update the project schedule, invoice the Government, coordinate all security clearances, and provide crane services.  Ahtna also self-performed selective demolition, logistics, contract management, and installation of the Radar Dome.