ALMA's Operations Support Facility is 19 miles (30 km) from the nearest town, San Pedro de Atacama in Chile. For the comfort and efficiency of its staff, the OSF functions as a small village for up to 500 skilled personnel living and working there.
The life of an ALMA staff member is not glamorous, but it is friendly and comfortable. Staff dorms are basic, motel-sized spaces, and the dining halls are cafeteria-styled canteens featuring hot and cold fare and the occasional Chilean dish.
Living and working at high altitude is uncomfortable for people who are not used to the thinness of the air here. A medical clinic on site provides for those who need help adjusting.
Join Adrian Russell for a quick chat about the ALMA Camp with North American ALMA Deputy Project Manager, Mauricio Pilleux.