These are organized by a classification scheme developed exclusively for Cosma. More…
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.
on May 26, 2020 at 12:12 pm
Cold, hard iron is on the move. Particles of the ferrous metal are trickling into Antarctica's oceans, and marine algae are gobbling it up.
Facing the Ultimate Acid Test
on May 11, 2020 at 12:12 pm
Some of the Southern Ocean's smallest animals are facing big challenges. The once-exceedingly stable Southern Ocean around Antarctica is warming, and as it absorbs carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, it is also growing more acidic.
Stringing Together More Neutrino Detectors
on April 27, 2020 at 12:12 pm
The biggest experiment at the South Pole is getting a significant upgrade. Over the next three years, IceCube, the neutrino detector located at the South Pole, will be getting numerous new detectors added to its core. It's the biggest upgrade to the IceCube detector since its completion in 2010.
Masses of Mosses
on April 14, 2020 at 1:54 am
As the continent warms, Antarctica is getting greener. Plants are taking hold where glaciers once covered the landscape. Moss in particular is sprouting up in new spots where it had been previously inhospitable. While moss isn't a new arrival to the continent, its spread could mean big changes for […]
A Seal Grows In Antarctica
on April 1, 2020 at 12:12 pm
Weddell seals thrive in some of the coldest conditions on the planet, but scientists aren't quite sure why they don't freeze when they're first starting out. Weddell seals thrive in some of the coldest conditions on the planet, but scientists aren't quite sure why they don't freeze when they're […]