Chinese scientists are expected to conclude the most complete and precise map of Antarctica during their current expedition to the frozen continent. Although much of Antarctica has been chartered and collected in maps by different countries this latest edition to be finished at the end of this year has been described “as the most complete so far”, according to a report in the Global Times.
With the lowest wheat area in 111 years, Argentina expects a 2009/10 crop of 7.5 million tons, the worst in the last 32 seasons, which means exports, --and tax revenue--, will be ten times less than the 2007/08 crop according to the Argentine Rural Society Economics Department.
Chinese scientists have set off from Shanghai for their 26th research mission to the Antarctic. The Snow Dragon, China's main research ship in the polar region, has gone through a series of maintenance and technical readjustments, according to Global Times.
Punta Arenas in the extreme south of Chile is anticipating a weaker cruise season for this 2009/2010 summer because of the global crisis. The number of calls is expected to drop 12.3% (17 less) totalling 79.950 passengers and 38.357 crew members, according to Punta Arenas Austral Port Authority, EPA.
The International Association of Antarctica Tour Operators (IAATO) has approved a resolution requiring members' passenger ships to be fitted with satellite tracking devices based on Iridium (Iridium Communications Inc.). The devices will report ships' positions at least once per hour when cruising in Antarctic waters.
The only known vintage print of the first expedition to reach the South Pole has been uncovered at the National Library of Australia. The small brown photograph shows Norwegian explorer Roald Amundsen's arrival at the pole in 1911.
Starting next Monday and operating from Punta Arenas in the extreme south of Chile NASA will fly its largest aircraft, --a DC-8, a 157-foot-long airborne laboratory-- to study changes in Antarctica’s sea ice, ice sheets and glaciers as part of its Operation Ice Bridge.
A documentary “Antarctica Secreta” (Secret Antarctica) which explores and promises abundant evidence of Chile’s long established roots in Antarctica, dating back to over a hundred years, is expected to be ready for its launching August next year, on time for the country’s bicentennial celebrations.
The thinning of ice sheets in Greenland and western Antarctica is far more extensive than was previously thought, according to new research published online in the British journal Nature.
Early indications are that 63 tour ships are due to visit South Georgia in the coming season, seven visits down on last season, according to the South Georgia Newsletter, August edition.