The Svalbard Global Seed Vault has just one entrance. Dual blast-proof security doors and an airlock separate the outside world from the seed storage rooms about 390 feet (119 meters) inside the mountain, as seen in an artist's rendering.
The Norwegian island of Spitsbergen was chosen as the location for the seed vault because it is a remote region with low tectonic activity and a cold Arctic environment that is ideal for preservation.
Although there will be no staff members on site, the facility will be monitored around the clock.
In addition, "the presence of polar bears, which prowl the area, may be seen by some as providing an added layer of security," the Global Crop Diversity Trust writes on its Web site.