Presentation and History of the
Pyramid International Laboratory

The position

The Pyramid International Laboratory-Observatory is the universally recognized symbol of research at high altitudes and it is a unique resource for researchers and scientists from all over the world. 

The Pyramid Laboratory was founded in 1990, at 5050 meters above sea level, in the Khumbu Valley, Sagarmatha National Park, at the foot of the Nepalese side of Everest, and it’s named after Prof. Ardito Desio. 

Thanks to its particular geographical position, the Pyramid offers an irreplaceable opportunity for the study of climatic and environmental changesmedicine and human physiology in extreme conditions, geologygeophysics and seismic phenomena. Furthermore, the remote area within the highest natural park on Earth, provides a unique condition for the study of human, animal and plant life, as well as climate, atmosphere and transport of pollutants. 

The structure

The pyramidal shape of the Laboratory-Observatory allows to combine the advantages of a highly stable structure (a square base of 13.22 m per side and a height of 8.40 m), with those derived from the natural resistance of the action of atmospheric agents, water, snow and wind. The external mirror glass coating also allows it to integrate perfectly with the surrounding environment and to limit the concentration of thermal solar energy within the structure.

The complex is self-sufficient thanks to a hybrid energy supply system, including a micro hydroelectric power plant (powered by a pipeline of water that draws from a small lake located above the Pyramid) and a system of solar panels (4 independent sectors on the south side and two on the east side of the laboratory). Wind generators have also been tested but with unsatisfactory results and, in case of emergency, catalytic energy generator with reduced emission is also available.

The management

To minimize environmental impacts, all the materials that are transported to the Pyramid have been carefully examined and selected. All solid waste produced is collected according to local regulations (in cooperation with the Pollution Control Committee of Sagarmatha) or transported along the valley to be placed in the most appropriate way. If necessary, solid waste is brought back to Italy.The Pyramid International Laboratory-Observatory operates in various sectors of scientific research: from medicine to physiology, from environmental to anthropological sciences, from studies on clean technologies to those on environmental management systems. Over time, a great amount of knowledge, initiatives and international partnerships have accumulated and continue to add to the laboratory’s activities. 

The facility is managed jointly with the Nepal Academy of Science and Technology (NAST). 

A long collaboration has given rise to 580 scientific missions, with the participation of 220 researchers from over 170 different scientific institutions coming from nations in all areas of the world (including Austria, France, Germany, England and Switzerland but also Australia, Canada, Japan and United States of America). 


The interior of the Pyramid is divided into three levels, which are used for the following matters.

First level

On the first level there are services of common use, laboratories, warehouses and switchboards of electrical systems, divided as follows: 

Two large laboratory rooms, equipped with: separable and demountable sectors, equipped with ducts for electrical power supplies, switchboards to connect equipment and lighting, custom-made demountable metal containers, folding metal chairs; Section dedicated to chemical analysis with: deionizer, high purity water production system, device for handling samples in a controlled atmosphere, in addition to the normal equipment of a chemical laboratory; 
Bathroom complete with toilet, sinks, shower; 
Common use/meeting room equipped with: tables made of decomposable and demountable sectors, with a metal structure, removable chairs made in fabric with a metal structure, custom-made metal containers. 

Second level

The second level has three medium-sized laboratory rooms completely separated from each other, a first aid room for altitude sickness, and a toilet. 
It is equipped with laboratory tables, chairs, cabinets, containers for various materials, hyperbaric chamber, oxygen concentrator and transportable set complete with oxygen cylinder, regulator and mask. 

Third level

It is dedicated to data processing, telecommunications and management, therefore it is set up with a support table for equipment, metal containers for equipment, chairs. 



Main photovoltaic system 

  • Pyramid section 
  • Lodge section 
  • Auxiliary services section 


  • HF radio (for national communications also with aircraft) 
  • VHF radio 
  • Walkie talkies 
  • Radio link (coverage up to Namche Bazar) 
  • Fixed bases (one in the Pyramid, the other ones for field operations) 
  • Telephony / satellite modem 
  • IP telephone (inside the ME switchboard) 
  • satellite phones 
  • portable satellite modems / phones 
  • VSAT satellite terminal 
  • Internet connection 
  • Data connections 
  • Videoconference 


First aid, pharmacy, oxygen concentrator, hyperbaric chambers, portable oxygen set with mask, removable stretcher for transport on difficult grounds, immobilization set for injured peoplemountaineering material set for first aid.

Technical services

  • Electrical laboratory 
  • Electronic laboratory 
  • Photovoltaic power supply set for jobs in the countryside (photovoltaic with AC supply) 
  • Field Broadband internet connectivity set 
  • “Virtual presence” set: backpack that allows you to create an AV connection via satellite with a local operator from the field 
  • Set for live streaming tv: backpack that allows you to make live streaming tv via satellite from the field 
  • Transportable set for long distance VHF / HF communications 

Logistic services 

  • Set for base camps and search fields 
  • Tents, Mattresses, Sleeping bags, Mountaineering equipment, High altitude clothing 

IT services 

Networks: LAN inside the laboratory, Networks with public IP 

Computers: Desktop, Notebook, Server, Printers, Wireless Access, Variable Band Internet Access 

Services for Research 

  • Local weather stations 
  • Webcam at ABC station 
  • GPS Master Station (now not active) 
  • Doris station for ground movement measurements 
  • Seismic station (to be reinstalled shortly) 
  • Chemical analysis laboratory 
    – Ultrapure water 
    – Highly cleaning chamber (sample processing) 
    – Chemical laboratory equipment 

Hotel services

Lodge with high standard services 

  • Kitchen with Italian food or Dining room with satellite TV  
  • Rooms with 2-3-4 places 
  • Toilets – showers  
  • Hot water + solar heating 


The Pyramid Lodge offers a structure that includes:  

  • 20 beds  
  • Toilets  
  • Common rooms  
  • Satellite Tv  
  • Internet connection  
  • Satellite telephone connection 
  • satellitare

EvK2Minoprio S.r.l. – SIAVS

Viale Raimondi 54,
Phone: +39 031 6876247
REA: CO – 407550
Share Capital: 28.461,00 euro

Viale Raimondi 54,
Phone: +39 031 6876247
REA: CO – 407550
Share Capital: 28.461,00 euro

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