An IAATO sailing yacht has demonstrated that private and commercial vessels on expeditions in Antarctica can perform official hydrographic surveys and produce navigational charts that are still much needed for the region. Results were presented at the 13th Conference of the Hydrographic Commission on Antarctica (HCA) in Cadiz, Spain 3-5 December, hosted by the Spanish Navy.
A U.S. Coast Guard heavy icebreaker left Australia for Antarctica on Sunday to rescue more than 120 crew members aboard two icebreakers trapped in pack ice near the frozen continent’s eastern edge, officials said. The 122-meter cutter, the Polar Star, is responding to a Jan. 3 request from Australia, Russia and China to assist the Russian and Chinese ships.
The Chinese icebreaker that helped rescue 52 passengers from a Russian ship stranded in Antarctic ice found itself stuck in heavy ice, further complicating the 9-day roller-coaster rescue operation. Snow Dragon (Xue Long) had ferried the passengers from the stranded Russian ship to an Australian icebreaker late on Thursday.
Just days after the Chinese rover Jade Rabbit settled down on the moon, China is setting out to bolster its presence in another remote place: Antarctica. Chinese state media said on Thursday that construction workers are en route to the future site of China’s fourth Antarctic research station, after a pit stop at one of its other bases.
A Chinese helicopter reached on Thursday a Russian ship stranded in Antarctica for nine days to pick up 52 passengers who spent Christmas and the New Year trapped in ice, the expedition leader has said.
Seventy four people spent Christmas aboard a cruise ship that has become stuck in the ice in a remote region off the coast of Antarctica and rescue vessels are at least two days away, according to Australian maritime officials. Three icebreakers are sailing to the rescue.
The prospect that Antarctica could be rich in diamonds was published in the scientific journal Nature Communications, following the discovery by a team of a telltale rock called kimberlite in the Prince Charles Mountains in East Antarctica.
With the Antarctic Summer well underway, British Antarctic Territory Commissioner Peter Hayes has sent his well wishes to British Antarctic Survey staff (BAS) working on the continent over the coming months. In a recent letter to UK Base commanders Dr Hayes commented:
Prince Harry and his fellow adventurers in the Walking With The Wounded expedition have arrived at the South Pole, the organizers have said. The group stood at the bottom of the world at 12:00 GMT Friday after more than three weeks of pulling sleds.
Heavy ice loss in West Antarctica has weakened it mantle underneath, allowing the stronger East Antarctica mantle to push it around, according to Ohio State University researchers. The discovery was made after recording GPS measurements, which clearly showed that the West Antarctic bedrock is being pushed at an alarming rate of half an inch per year.