In 2361, it was evacuated by the USS Potemkin due to a distortion field. Among those leading the evacuation was William T. Riker, who, unbeknownst to anyone, subsequently was split by the transporter, leaving a duplicate behind. Riker received a promotion "for exceptional valour during the evacuation of the research station on Nervala Four." Starfleet then abandoned the station.
Meanwhile, believing himself presumed dead, Thomas used parts from the station's computer to maintain the station's radiation shield; at one point, while doing repairs beneath the station, the duplicate fractured his arm. Replicators had also been non-functional for some time since the incident.
Eight years later, the USS Enterprise-D discovered Riker's duplicate there, upon returning to the station to retrieve scientific data that researchers from the station had abandoned. His disassembling of the computer made this task difficult, but not impossible; he himself later assisted with the task. (TNG: "Second Chances")