Ihm gelang das erste „Full Solo Unsupported Ski & Snowkite Crossing of Antarctica“, die erste Solo-Skidurchquerung des Kontinents mit. Our Antarctica cruises offer you an experience unlike any you've had. You will see icebergs, glaciers, whales, seals, birds, and thousands of penguins. Many translated example sentences containing "Antarctica" – German-English dictionary and search engine for German translations.
CIRCUS ANTARCTICA – Das Polarexpeditions-Klassifikations-Schema, Teil 3Erkunden Sie die Antarktis, als ob Sie selbst dort wären! Die Ausstellung Antarctica nimmt Sie mit auf eine Expedition nach Adélieland, ganz in die Nähe der. Many translated example sentences containing "Antarctica" – German-English dictionary and search engine for German translations. Antarctica (von altgriechisch ἀνταρκτικός antarktikos, „der Arktis gegenüber“) steht für: die englische Bezeichnung des Südkontinentes Antarktika; den Film.
Antarctica Navigation menu VideoWhy Planes Don't Fly Over Antarctica It Imdb Tomb Raider larger than both Oceania and Europe. It was eventually determined that the Antarctica of the ozone was caused by chlorofluorocarbons CFCs emitted by human products. Antarctica has no indigenous population. Fossil fuels formed from the remains of ancient plants and animals. Sue Price summers average just above freezing, with the more mountainous East Antarctica colder than its western counterpart. Allerdings wurden durchaus schon Entdeckungsreisen im Südpolargebiet unternommen, so wurden zum Beispiel die Südlichen Shetlandinseln wahrscheinlich bereits Soko Wismar Bittere Weihnacht Antarctica Gerritz Pomp oder Gabriel de Castilla entdeckt. Dezember als erster Mensch die Antarktische Halbinsel. Blackfish Watch Online kartierte er auch das Rossmeereine Seeregion, die später nach ihm benannt wurde. Als sie nach 1. Antarctica (von altgriechisch ἀνταρκτικός antarktikos, „der Arktis gegenüber“) steht für: die englische Bezeichnung des Südkontinentes Antarktika; den Film. Antarktika (von altgriechisch ἀνταρκτικός antarktikos‚ der Arktis gegenüber') ist der Aus der gesamten Antarktika sind nur zwei einheimische Blütenpflanzen bekannt: die Antarktische Schmiele (Deschampsia antarctica) und das. Our Antarctica cruises offer you an experience unlike any you've had. You will see icebergs, glaciers, whales, seals, birds, and thousands of penguins. The abnormal day and light cycles cause great impact on humans, and scientists are using Antarctica to study its effects and how to prevent them.
Hydroponics requires excellent gardener s because produce is grown without soil. Fresh produce adds variety and nutrition to Antarctic meals.
The greenhouse also serves as a sunroom for sunlight-deprived residents, especially during the long winter months.
Political Geography Historic Issues For many European and North American powers, Antarctica represented the last great frontier for human exploration.
By the early 20th century, explorers started to traverse the interior of Antarctica. The aim of these expeditions was often more competitive than scientific.
In , Amundsen, of Norway, and Scott, of the United Kingdom , began expeditions with the aim of becoming the first man to reach the South Pole.
Each team used different methods, with drastic ally different levels of success. The team was healthy, and successfully made the journey out of Antarctica.
They all died on their journey home. Hoping to one-up his predecessors, Shackleton, of the United Kingdom, attempted the first transcontinental crossing of Antarctica in Shackleton planned the trip by using two ships, the Aurora and the Endurance , at opposite ends of the continent.
Aurora would sail to the Ross Sea and deposit supplies. On the opposite side, Endurance would sail through the Weddell Sea to reach the continent.
Once there, the team would march to the pole with dog teams, dispose of extra baggage, and use supplies left by Aurora to reach the other end of the continent.
The plan failed. The Endurance became frozen in the pack ice of the Weddell Sea. The pack ice crushed and sunk the ship. Their food sources were leopard seals, fish, and, ultimately, their sled dogs.
Although some of the crew sustained injuries, they all survived. The journey of the Endurance expedition symbolizes the Heroic Age, a time of extreme sacrifice and bravery in the name of exploration and discovery.
Apsley George Benet Cherry-Garrard, a polar explorer, summed up the Heroic Age in his book The Worst Journey in the World : "For a joint scientific and geographical piece of organisation, give me Scott; for a Winter Journey, Wilson; for a dash to the Pole and nothing else, Amundsen: and if I am in the devil of a hole and want to get out of it, give me Shackleton every time.
This change was initially fueled by the Cold War , a period of time defined by the division between the United States and the Soviet Union , and the threat of nuclear war.
The International Geophysical Year IGY of aimed to end Cold War divisions among the scientific community by promoting global scientific exchange.
The IGY prompted an intense period of scientific research in the Antarctic. Many countries conducted their first Antarctic explorations and constructed the first research stations on Antarctica.
More than 50 Antarctic stations were established for the IGY by just 12 countries: Argentina, Australia, Belgium, Chile, France, Japan, New Zealand, Norway, South Africa, the Soviet Union, the United Kingdom, and the United States.
The Antarctic Treaty does support territorial claims made before , by New Zealand, Australia, France, Norway, the United Kingdom, Chile, and Argentina.
Under the treaty, the size of these claims cannot be changed and new claims cannot be made. Most importantly, the treaty establishes that any treaty-state has free access to the whole region.
As such, research stations supported by a variety of treaty-states have been constructed within each of these territorial claims. Today, 47 states have signed the Antarctic Treaty.
The Antarctic Treaty was an important geopolitical milestone because it was the first arms control agreement established during the Cold War.
Along with the IGY, the Antarctic Treaty symbolized global understanding and exchange during a period of intense division and secrecy. Many important documents have been added to the Antarctic Treaty.
Collectively known as the Antarctic Treaty System, they cover such topics as pollution , conservation of animals and other marine life, and protection of natural resource s.
The yearly Antarctic Treaty Consultative Meeting ATCM is a forum for the Antarctic Treaty System and its administration.
Only 28 of the 47 treaty-states have decision-making powers during these meetings. These include the 12 original signatories of the Antarctic Treaty, along with 16 other countries that have conducted substantial and consistent scientific research there.
Future Issues Two important and related issues that concern the Antarctic region are climate change and tourism. The ATCM continues to address both issues.
Antarctic tourism has grown substantially in the last decade, with roughly 40, visitors coming to the region in In , the ATCM held meetings in New Zealand to discuss the impact of tourism on the Antarctic environment.
Officials worked closely with the International Association of Antarctica Tour Operators IAATO to establish better practices that would reduce the carbon footprint and environmental impact of tour ships.
These include regulations and restrictions on: numbers of people ashore; planned activities; wildlife watching; pre- and post-visit activity reporting; passenger, crew, and staff briefings; and emergency medical-evacuation plans.
The ACTM and IAATO hope more sustainable tourism will reduce the environmental impact s of the sensitive Antarctic ecosystem. Climate change disproportionately affects the Antarctic region, as evidenced by reductions in the size of the Antarctic Ice Sheet and the warming waters off the coast.
The ACTM recommended that treaty-states develop energy-efficient practices that reduce the carbon footprint of activities in Antarctica and cut fossil fuel use from research stations, vessels, ground transportation, and aircraft.
The Antarctic has become a symbol of climate change. Scientists and policymakers are focusing on changes in this environmentally sensitive region to push for its protection and the sustainable use of its scientific resources.
Not until was it established that Antarctica was a continent and not just a group of islands. Largest Urban Area McMurdo Station, operated by the United States Antarctic Program: 1, people summer or people winter.
Also called an alpha predator or top predator. The two sides never confronted each other directly. The Earth is the only place in the known universe that supports life.
Also called East Antarctica. Also called the energy balance. Also called West Antarctica. National Aeronautics and Space Administration the U.
Also called thermohaline circulation. Sea level is determined by measurements taken over a year cycle. Also called the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, or the USSR.
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There are a number of rivers and lakes in Antarctica, the longest river being the Onyx. The largest lake, Vostok , is one of the largest sub-glacial lakes in the world.
Antarctica is divided in two by the Transantarctic Mountains close to the neck between the Ross Sea and the Weddell Sea. The portion west of the Weddell Sea and east of the Ross Sea is called West Antarctica and the remainder East Antarctica.
In the dry valleys , the same effect occurs over a rock base, leading to a desiccated landscape. West Antarctica is covered by the West Antarctic Ice Sheet.
The sheet has been of recent concern because of the small possibility of its collapse. If the sheet were to break down, ocean levels would rise by several metres in a relatively geologically short period of time, perhaps a matter of centuries.
East Antarctica lies on the Indian Ocean side of the Transantarctic Mountains and comprises Coats Land , Queen Maud Land , Enderby Land , Mac. Robertson Land , Wilkes Land , and Victoria Land.
All but a small portion of this region lies within the Eastern Hemisphere. East Antarctica is largely covered by the East Antarctic Ice Sheet.
Antarctica contains many other mountains , on both the main continent and the surrounding islands. Mount Erebus on Ross Island is the world's southernmost active volcano.
Another well-known volcano is found on Deception Island , which is famous for a giant eruption in Minor eruptions are frequent, and lava flow has been observed in recent years.
Other dormant volcanoes may potentially be active. Antarctica is home to more than 70 lakes that lie at the base of the continental ice sheet.
Lake Vostok, discovered beneath Russia's Vostok Station in , is the largest of these subglacial lakes.
It was once believed that the lake had been sealed off for , to one million years, but a recent survey suggests that, every so often, there are large flows of water from one lake to another.
The frozen surface of the lake shares similarities with Jupiter 's moon Europa. If life is discovered in Lake Vostok, it would strengthen the argument for the possibility of life on Europa.
If found, these resilient creatures could further bolster the argument for extraterrestrial life in extremely cold, methane-rich environments.
In September , researchers at the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency released a high resolution terrain map detail down to the size of a car, and less in some areas of Antarctica, named the " Reference Elevation Model of Antarctica " REMA.
More than million years ago, Antarctica was part of the supercontinent Gondwana. At a number of points in its history, it was farther north, experienced a tropical or temperate climate, and was covered in forests.
During the Cambrian period , Gondwana had a mild climate. West Antarctica was partially in the Northern Hemisphere , and during this period large amounts of sandstones , limestones and shales were deposited.
East Antarctica was at the equator, where sea floor invertebrates and trilobites flourished in the tropical seas. By the start of the Devonian period Ma , Gondwana was in more southern latitudes and the climate was cooler, though fossils of land plants are known from this time.
Sand and silts were laid down in what is now the Ellsworth, Horlick and Pensacola Mountains. Glaciation began at the end of the Devonian period Ma , as Gondwana became centred on the South Pole and the climate cooled, though flora remained.
During the Permian period, the land became dominated by seed plants such as Glossopteris , a pteridosperm which grew in swamps.
Over time these swamps became deposits of coal in the Transantarctic Mountains. Towards the end of the Permian period, continued warming led to a dry, hot climate over much of Gondwana.
As a result of continued warming, the polar ice caps melted and much of Gondwana became a desert. In Eastern Antarctica, seed ferns or pteridosperms became abundant and large amounts of sandstone and shale were laid down at this time.
Synapsids , commonly known as "mammal-like reptiles" and which included species such as Lystrosaurus , were common in Antarctica during the Early Triassic.
Ammonites were common in the seas around Antarctica, and dinosaurs were also present, though only three Antarctic dinosaur genera Cryolophosaurus and Glacialisaurus , from the Hanson Formation ,  and Antarctopelta have been described to date.
There is some evidence of Antarctic marine glaciation during the Cretaceous period. The cooling of Antarctica occurred stepwise, as the continental spread changed the oceanic currents from longitudinal equator-to-pole temperature-equalising currents to latitudinal currents that preserved and accentuated latitude temperature differences.
Africa separated from Antarctica in the Jurassic, around Ma, followed by the Indian subcontinent in the early Cretaceous about Ma. By the end of the Cretaceous, about 66 Ma, Antarctica then connected to Australia still had a subtropical climate and flora, complete with a marsupial fauna.
During the Eocene—Oligocene extinction event about 34 million years ago, CO 2 levels have been found to be about ppm  and had been decreasing from earlier levels in the thousands of ppm.
Around 25 Ma, the Drake Passage opened between Antarctica and South America, resulting in the Antarctic Circumpolar Current that completely isolated the continent.
Models of the changes suggest that declining CO 2 levels became more important. Since about 15 Ma, the continent has been mostly covered with ice.
Fossil Nothofagus leaves in the Meyer Desert Formation of the Sirius Group show that intermittent warm periods allowed Nothofagus shrubs to cling to the Dominion Range as late as 3—4 Ma mid-late Pliocene.
The geological study of Antarctica has been greatly hindered by nearly all of the continent being permanently covered with a thick layer of ice.
Geologically, West Antarctica closely resembles the Andes mountain range of South America. This sediment uplift was accompanied by igneous intrusions and volcanism.
The most common rocks in West Antarctica are andesite and rhyolite volcanics formed during the Jurassic period. There is also evidence of volcanic activity, even after the ice sheet had formed, in Marie Byrd Land and Alexander Island.
The only anomalous area of West Antarctica is the Ellsworth Mountains region, where the stratigraphy is more similar to East Antarctica.
East Antarctica is geologically varied, dating from the Precambrian era, with some rocks formed more than 3 billion years ago.
It is composed of a metamorphic and igneous platform which is the basis of the continental shield. On top of this base are coal and various modern rocks, such as sandstones , limestones and shales laid down during the Devonian and Jurassic periods to form the Transantarctic Mountains.
The main mineral resource known on the continent is coal. The Prince Charles Mountains contain significant deposits of iron ore.
The most valuable resources of Antarctica lie offshore, namely the oil and natural gas fields found in the Ross Sea in Exploitation of all mineral resources is banned until by the Protocol on Environmental Protection to the Antarctic Treaty.
Antarctica is the coldest of Earth 's continents. It was ice-free until about 34 million years ago, when it became covered with ice.
Northern Antarctica recorded a temperature of Sunburn is often a health issue as the snow surface reflects almost all of the ultraviolet light falling on it.
Given the latitude, long periods of constant darkness or constant sunlight create climates unfamiliar to human beings in much of the rest of the world.
The aurora australis , commonly known as the southern lights, is a glow observed in the night sky near the South Pole created by the plasma-full solar winds that pass by the Earth.
Another unique spectacle is diamond dust , a ground-level cloud composed of tiny ice crystals. It generally forms under otherwise clear or nearly clear skies, so people sometimes also refer to it as clear-sky precipitation.
A sun dog , a frequent atmospheric optical phenomenon , is a bright "spot" beside the true sun. East Antarctica is colder than its western counterpart because of its higher elevation.
Weather fronts rarely penetrate far into the continent, leaving the centre cold and dry. Despite the lack of precipitation over the central portion of the continent, ice there lasts for extended periods.
Heavy snowfalls are common on the coastal portion of the continent, where snowfalls of up to 1. At the continent's edge, strong katabatic winds off the polar plateau often blow at storm force.
In the interior, wind speeds are typically moderate. During clear days in summer, more solar radiation reaches the surface at the South Pole than at the equator because of the 24 hours of sunlight each day at the Pole.
Antarctica is colder than the Arctic for three reasons. Second, the Arctic Ocean covers the north polar zone: the ocean's relative warmth is transferred through the icepack and prevents temperatures in the Arctic regions from reaching the extremes typical of the land surface of Antarctica.
Third, the Earth is at aphelion in July i. The orbital distance contributes to a colder Antarctic winter and a warmer Antarctic summer but the first two effects have more impact.
Some of Antarctica has been warming up; particularly strong warming has been noted on the Antarctic Peninsula. A study by Eric Steig published in noted for the first time that the continent-wide average surface temperature trend of Antarctica was slightly positive from to There is some evidence warming in Antarctica is due to human greenhouse gas emissions ,  but this this is difficult to determine due to internal variability.
The trend was at a scale unprecedented over the last years; the most dominant driver of this mode of variability is likely the depletion of ozone above the continent.
In the Antarctic Peninsula's Larsen-B ice shelf collapsed. Due to its location at the South Pole, Antarctica receives relatively little solar radiation except along the southern summer.
This means that it is a very cold continent where water is mostly in the form of ice. Precipitation is low most of Antarctica is a desert and almost always in the form of snow, which accumulates and forms a giant ice sheet which covers the land.
Parts of this ice sheet form moving glaciers known as ice streams , which flow towards the edges of the continent. Next to the continental shore are many ice shelves.
These are floating extensions of outflowing glaciers from the continental ice mass. Offshore, temperatures are also low enough that ice is formed from seawater through most of the year.
Sea ice extent expands annually in the Antarctic winter and most of this ice melts in the summer. This ice is formed from the ocean water and floats in the same water and thus does not contribute to rise in sea level.
An possible explanation for the difference between the Antarctic and the Arctic, which has seen rapid sea ice loss, is that thermohaline circulation transports warmed water to deeper layers in the ocean.
The amount of variation it has experienced in its thickness is unclear with satellite techniques just emerging as of The Antarctic ice sheet is losing mass as ice flows faster into the ocean than before.
This effect is partially offset by additional snow falling back onto the continent. Melting of floating ice shelves ice that originated on the land does not in itself contribute much to sea-level rise, since the ice displaces only its own mass of water.
However, ice sheets work as a stabilizer of the land ice, and are vulnerable to warming water. Recent decades have witnessed several dramatic collapses of large ice shelves around the coast of Antarctica, especially along the Antarctic Peninsula.
This area is dominated by small accumulations of snowfall which becomes ice and thus eventually seaward glacial flows. Estimates of the mass balance of the East Antarctic Ice Sheet as a whole range from slightly positive to slightly negative.
There is a large area of low ozone concentration or " ozone hole " over Antarctica. This hole covers almost the whole continent and was at its largest in September , when the longest lasting hole on record remained until the end of December.
This reduced the formation of the 'polar stratospheric clouds' that enable the chemistry that leads to rapid ozone loss.
Some scientific studies suggest that ozone depletion may have a dominant role in governing climatic change in Antarctica and a wider area of the Southern Hemisphere.
This cooling has the effect of intensifying the westerly winds which flow around the continent the polar vortex and thus prevents outflow of the cold air near the South Pole.
As a result, the continental mass of the East Antarctic ice sheet is held at lower temperatures, and the peripheral areas of Antarctica, especially the Antarctic Peninsula, are subject to higher temperatures, which promote accelerated melting.
The terrestrial and native year-round species appears to be the descendants of ancestors who lived in geothermally warmed environments during the last ice age, when these areas were the only places on the continent not covered by ice.
Few terrestrial vertebrates live in Antarctica, and those that do are limited to the sub-Antarctic islands. Some species of marine animals exist and rely, directly or indirectly, on the phytoplankton.
Antarctic sea life includes penguins , blue whales , orcas , colossal squids and fur seals. The Antarctic fur seal was very heavily hunted in the 18th and 19th centuries for its pelt by sealers from the United States and the United Kingdom.
The Weddell seal , a " true seal ", is named after Sir James Weddell, commander of British sealing expeditions in the Weddell Sea.
Antarctic krill , which congregate in large schools , is the keystone species of the ecosystem of the Southern Ocean , and is an important food organism for whales, seals, leopard seals , fur seals, squid , icefish , penguins, albatrosses and many other birds.
A census of sea life carried out during the International Polar Year and which involved some researchers was released in The research is part of the global Census of Marine Life and has disclosed some remarkable findings.
Large animals such as some cetaceans and birds make the round trip annually. More surprising are small forms of life such as sea cucumbers and free-swimming snails found in both polar oceans.
About 1, species of fungi have been recorded from Antarctica, of which about are non-lichen-forming and are lichen-forming. The apparently simple morphology, scarcely differentiated structures, metabolic systems and enzymes still active at very low temperatures, and reduced life cycles shown by such fungi make them particularly suited to harsh environments such as the McMurdo Dry Valleys.
In particular, their thick-walled and strongly melanised cells make them resistant to UV light. Those features can also be observed in algae and cyanobacteria , suggesting that these are adaptations to the conditions prevailing in Antarctica.
This has led to speculation that, if life ever occurred on Mars, it might have looked similar to Antarctic fungi such as Cryomyces antarcticus , and Cryomyces minteri.
Endemic Antarctic fungi also include certain dung-inhabiting species which have had to evolve in response to the double challenge of extreme cold while growing on dung, and the need to survive passage through the gut of warm-blooded animals.
About million years ago Permian forests started to cover the continent, and tundra vegetation survived as late as 15 million years ago,  but the climate of present-day Antarctica does not allow extensive vegetation to form.
A combination of freezing temperatures, poor soil quality, lack of moisture, and lack of sunlight inhibit plant growth. As a result, the diversity of plant life is very low and limited in distribution.
The flora of the continent largely consists of bryophytes. There are about species of mosses and 25 species of liverworts , but only three species of flowering plants , all of which are found in the Antarctic Peninsula: Deschampsia antarctica Antarctic hair grass , Colobanthus quitensis Antarctic pearlwort and the non-native Poa annua annual bluegrass.
Seven hundred species of algae exist, most of which are phytoplankton. Multicoloured snow algae and diatoms are especially abundant in the coastal regions during the summer.
The Protocol on Environmental Protection to the Antarctic Treaty also known as the Environmental Protocol or Madrid Protocol came into force in , and is the main instrument concerned with conservation and management of biodiversity in Antarctica.
The Antarctic Treaty Consultative Meeting is advised on environmental and conservation issues in Antarctica by the Committee for Environmental Protection.
A major concern within this committee is the risk to Antarctica from unintentional introduction of non-native species from outside the region.
The passing of the Antarctic Conservation Act in the U. The introduction of alien plants or animals can bring a criminal penalty, as can the extraction of any indigenous species.
The overfishing of krill , which plays a large role in the Antarctic ecosystem, led officials to enact regulations on fishing.
The Convention for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources CCAMLR , a treaty that came into force in , requires that regulations managing all Southern Ocean fisheries consider potential effects on the entire Antarctic ecosystem.
The illegal fishing of toothfish has been increasing, with estimates of 32, tonnes 35, short tons in Several governments maintain permanent staffed research stations on the continent.
The number of people conducting and supporting scientific research and other work on the continent and its nearby islands varies from about 1, in winter to about 5, in the summer, giving it a population density between 70 and inhabitants per million square kilometres and per million square miles at these times.
Many of the stations are staffed year-round, the winter-over personnel typically arriving from their home countries for a one-year assignment.
An Orthodox church — Trinity Church , opened in at the Russian Bellingshausen Station —is manned year-round by one or two priests, who are similarly rotated every year.
The first semi-permanent inhabitants of regions near Antarctica areas situated south of the Antarctic Convergence were British and American sealers who used to spend a year or more on South Georgia , from onward.
During the whaling era, which lasted until , the population of that island varied from over 1, in the summer over 2, in some years to some in the winter.
Most of the whalers were Norwegian, with an increasing proportion of Britons. The settlements included Grytviken , Leith Harbour , King Edward Point , Stromness , Husvik , Prince Olav Harbour , Ocean Harbour and Godthul.
Managers and other senior officers of the whaling stations often lived together with their families. Among them was the founder of Grytviken, Captain Carl Anton Larsen , a prominent Norwegian whaler and explorer who, along with his family, adopted British citizenship in She was a daughter of Fridthjof Jacobsen, the assistant manager of the whaling station, and Klara Olette Jacobsen.
Jacobsen arrived on the island in and became the manager of Grytviken, serving from to ; two of his children were born on the island.
Emilio Marcos Palma was the first person born south of the 60th parallel south , the first born on the Antarctic mainland, and the only living human to be the first born on any continent.
In , Juan Pablo Camacho was born at the Frei Montalva Station , becoming the first Chilean born in Antarctica. Several bases are now home to families with children attending schools at the station.
Several countries claim sovereignty in certain regions. While a few of these countries have mutually recognised each other's claims,  the validity of these claims is not recognised universally.
New claims on Antarctica have been suspended since , although in Norway formally defined Queen Maud Land as including the unclaimed area between it and the South Pole.
The treaty was signed by twelve countries including the Soviet Union and later Russia , the United Kingdom, Argentina, Chile, Australia], and the United States.
This was the first arms control agreement established during the Cold War. In the Antarctic Treaty Parties began negotiations on a convention to regulate mining in Antarctica.
They proposed instead that a comprehensive regime to protect the Antarctic environment be negotiated in its place.
The Antarctic Treaty prohibits any military activity in Antarctica , including the establishment of military bases and fortifications, military manoeuvres, and weapons testing.
Military personnel or equipment are permitted only for scientific research or other peaceful purposes. The Argentine, British and Chilean claims all overlap, and have caused friction.
On 18 December , the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office named a previously unnamed area Queen Elizabeth Land in tribute to Queen Elizabeth II 's Diamond Jubilee.
The areas shown as Australia's and New Zealand's claims were British territory until they were handed over following the countries' independence.
Australia currently claims the largest area. The claims of Britain, Australia, New Zealand, France and Norway are all recognised by each other.
Other countries participating as members of the Antarctic Treaty have a territorial interest in Antarctica, but the provisions of the Treaty do not allow them to make their claims while it is in force.
There is current economic activity in Antarctica outside of fishing off the coast and small-scale tourism. Although coal, hydrocarbons , iron ore, platinum , copper , chromium , nickel , gold and other minerals have been found, they have not been in large enough quantities to exploit.
In , a compromise agreement was reached to place an indefinite ban on mining, to be reviewed in , further limiting economic development and exploitation.
The primary economic activity is the capture and offshore trading of fish. Antarctic fisheries in —01 reported landing , tonnes.
Small-scale "expedition tourism" has existed since and is currently subject to Antarctic Treaty and Environmental Protocol provisions, but in effect self-regulated by the International Association of Antarctica Tour Operators IAATO.
Travel is largely by small or medium ship, focusing on specific scenic locations with accessible concentrations of iconic wildlife. A total of 37, tourists visited during the —07 Austral summer with nearly all of them coming from commercial ships; 38, were recorded in — There has been some concern over the potential adverse environmental and ecosystem effects caused by the influx of visitors.
Some environmentalists and scientists have made a call for stricter regulations for ships and a tourism quota. Antarctic sightseeing flights which did not land operated out of Australia and New Zealand until the fatal crash of Air New Zealand Flight in on Mount Erebus, which killed all aboard.
About thirty countries maintain about seventy research stations year-round or permanent, and 30 summer-only in Antarctica, with an approximate population of in summer and in winter.
The ISO alpha-2 "AQ" is assigned to the entire continent regardless of jurisdiction. Different country calling codes and currencies  are used for different settlements, depending on the administrating country.
The Antarctican dollar, a souvenir item sold in the United States and Canada, is not legal tender. Each year, scientists from 28 different nations conduct experiments not reproducible in any other place in the world.
In the summer more than 4, scientists operate research stations; this number decreases to just over 1, in the winter. Researchers include biologists , geologists , oceanographers , physicists , astronomers , glaciologists , and meteorologists.
Geologists tend to study plate tectonics , meteorites from outer space , and resources from the breakup of the supercontinent Gondwana.
Glaciologists in Antarctica are concerned with the study of the history and dynamics of floating ice, seasonal snow , glaciers, and ice sheets.
Biologists, in addition to examining the wildlife, are interested in how harsh temperatures and the presence of people affect adaptation and survival strategies in a wide variety of organisms.
Medical physicians have made discoveries concerning the spreading of viruses and the body's response to extreme seasonal temperatures. Astrophysicists at Amundsen—Scott South Pole Station study the celestial dome and cosmic microwave background radiation.
Many astronomical observations are better made from the interior of Antarctica than from most surface locations because of the high elevation, which results in a thin atmosphere; low temperature, which minimises the amount of water vapour in the atmosphere; and absence of light pollution , thus allowing for a view of space clearer than anywhere else on Earth.
Since the s an important focus of study has been the ozone layer in the atmosphere above Antarctica. In , three British scientists working on data they had gathered at Halley Station on the Brunt Ice Shelf discovered the existence of a hole in this layer.
It was eventually determined that the destruction of the ozone was caused by chlorofluorocarbons CFCs emitted by human products. In , The Polar Geospatial Center was founded.
The Polar Geospatial Center uses geospatial and remote sensing technology to provide mapping services to American federally funded research teams.
The prefabricated station, which is part of the International Polar Year, was shipped to the South Pole from Belgium by the end of to monitor the health of the polar regions.
The project includes research in climatology , glaciology and microbiology. In January British Antarctic Survey BAS scientists, led by Hugh Corr and David Vaughan , reported in the journal Nature Geoscience that 2, years ago, a volcano erupted under Antarctica's ice sheet based on airborne survey with radar images.
The biggest eruption in Antarctica in the last 10, years, the volcanic ash was found deposited on the ice surface under the Hudson Mountains , close to Pine Island Glacier.
Meteorites from Antarctica are an important area of study of material formed early in the solar system ; most are thought to come from asteroids , but some may have originated on larger planets.
The first meteorite was found in and named the Adelie Land meteorite. In , a Japanese expedition discovered nine meteorites. Most of these meteorites have fallen onto the ice sheet in the last million years.
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Mary's Seminary and University, Baltimore, Maryland, United States Central Intelligence Agency - The World Factbook - Antarctica British Antarctic Survey - Discovering Antarctica.
Articles from Britannica Encyclopedias for elementary and high school students. See Article History.
Map of Antarctica highlighting the major geographic regions, ice sheets, and sites of several research stations. Britannica Quiz.
Exploring Antarctica: Fact or Fiction? Is Antarctica a desert? Does it have mountains? Point your mental compass due South and test the extremes of your knowledge of Antarctica in this quiz.
The Transantarctic Mountains, northern Victoria Land, Antarctica.