The underground laboratory, a 30-m-long two-layer tunnel beneath the Institute’s building, was constructed in 1967 to study perennially frozen materials under natural conditions.

This facility provides an area for testing and experimentation of various kinds in its natural-cold chambers for the Institute’s staff, as well as for investigators from other research institutes and organizations.

The chambers of the underground laboratory are often used for temporary storage of objects that require constant subfreezing temperatures to prevent decay. One stored, for example, the carcass of a mammoth calf found in the summer of 1977 in the Upper Kolyma. A plaster cast of this baby mammoth named Dima is now on display in the upper gallery of the tunnel. Another famous finding, an extremely well-preserved head of the “Yukaghir” mammoth discovered in Yakutia in 2003, was placed here for a short while.

Continuing to serve as a natural cold location for testing and experimentation, the underground laboratory in permafrost has become a popular tourist site, providing an extraordinary experience for local and international visitors.






The Underground Laboratory is located beneath the main building of the Melnikov Permafrost Institute at 36 Merzlotnaya St., Yakutsk, Republic of Sakha/Yakutia.


Opening hours

Guided tours are available daily, except on public holidays, from 9 am to 5 pm by prior arrangement.



Admission Fees


1000 Roubles

Groups (two persons or more)

500 Roubles per person

Additional Fees


250 Roubles per camera


250 Roubles per camera

Professional Photography

5000 Roubles


5000 Roubles



Tours are guided by Institute’s research personnel therefore all visits must be made by prior appointment. For more information and arrangements, please contact:

Rozalia Ivanova

Tel.: 7-4112-334423

Mobile: +7 914-290-73-76




 Institute of the general formsubway-general view


remnants of vegetationDima

snowflakes 1snowflakes 2

Unless stated otherwise, all photographs on this website are by the Melnikov Permafrost Institute staff members
(Sergey Serikov, Yuri Murzin, Leonid Gagarin, Mikhail Grigoriev, Alexander Fedorov, Sergey Gulyi, Ivan Vakhrin, Andrey Litovko, Stepan Varlamov and others).

Siberian Branch | Russian Academy of Sciences

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