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Antarctica : continent around the South Pole; a plateau covered by a great ice cap and mountain peaks area about 5,500,000 square miles (14,300,000 square kilometers) — Webster
Antarctica is Earth’s southernmost continent. It contains the geographic South Pole and is situated in the Antarctic region of the Southern Hemisphere, almost entirely south of the Antarctic Circle, and is surrounded by the Southern Ocean. At 14,000,000 square kilometres (5,400,000 square miles), it is the fifth-largest continent. For comparison, Antarctica is nearly twice the size of Australia. About 98% of Antarctica is covered by ice that averages 1.9 km (1.2 mi; 6,200 ft) in thickness, which extends to all but the northernmost reaches of the Antarctic Peninsula.
Antarctica, on average, is the coldest, driest, and windiest continent, and has the highest average elevation of all the continents. Antarctica is a desert, with annual precipitation of only 200 mm (8 in) along the coast and far less inland. The temperature in Antarctica has reached −89.2 °C (−128.6 °F), though the average for the third quarter (the coldest part of the year) is −63 °C (−81 °F). Anywhere from 1,000 to 5,000 people reside throughout the year at the research stations scattered across the continent. Organisms native to Antarctica include many types of algae, bacteria, fungi, plants, protista, and certain animals, such as mites, nematodes, penguins, seals and tardigrades. Vegetation, where it occurs, is tundra. — Wikipedia
Although myths and speculation about a Terra Australis (“Southern Land”) date back to antiquity, the first confirmed sighting of the continent is commonly accepted to have occurred in 1820 by the Russian expedition of Fabian Gottlieb von Bellingshausen and Mikhail Lazarev. The continent, however, remained largely neglected for the rest of the 19th century because of its hostile environment, lack of resources, and isolation. — Wikipedia
Notebook from Scott of the Antarctic’s ill-fated expedition discovered 100 years later frozen in ice (ABC News)
Century-Old Notebook From Antarctic Expedition Found (Megan Gannon, Discovery, Live Science)
Antarctic Sun - Science News Feed Science news items and articles displayed on the Antarctic Sun web site.
- Thwaites Glacier - Presenton May 3, 2021 at 12:12 pm
Thwaites Glacier is melting fast because of climate change, causing sea levels to rise the world over. Of all the world's glaciers, it's the one that scientists are most worried that a catastrophic collapse could happen quickly and affect coastal regions everywhere.
- Thwaites Glacier - Paston April 21, 2021 at 12:12 pm
Antarctica's massive Thwaites Glacier is melting because of climate change, and if it collapses completely, could add about two feet to global sea level. Glaciologists are tracking it with alarm, as Thwaites has lost a tremendous amount of mass over recent decades, but its remote location in West […]
- Cruising for Molluskson March 29, 2021 at 12:12 pm
Scientists are going to the ends of the Earth to discover all they can about an obscure group of sparkly, worm-like mollusks. There's lots of these critters living on the seafloor surrounding Antarctica, but they're not easy to get at and only a few scientists are studying them.
- Charting a Genetic Sea Changeon March 15, 2021 at 12:12 pm
Scientists are mapping the coastline of ancient Antarctica using DNA from underwater invertebrates alive today. In October, despite the ongoing COVID pandemic, a team of researchers sailed from California to Antarctica to bring back the sea creatures with evidence of a long-lost transantarctic sea […]
- On the Wings of Petrelson February 15, 2021 at 12:12 pm
Ecologist Donna Fraser carefully makes her way across a low rocky ridge towards a mass of gray feathers with a beak. It's the baby chick of a southern giant petrel.