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Antarctic News

A collection of news items taken from the world's newspapers that relate to the Antarctic. This site is updated as news items appear in the popular press. All links will take you to sites outside of the PRISM site. Use your back button to return.

  • July 29, 2005 - Explaining Antarctica's Strange Megadunes - MSNBC
    Huge dunes carved by the katabatic winds in Antarctica can be seen from space but are barely perceptible to ground exploration because they are so large. It appears that these dunes are formed by a different process than sand dunes. More about katabatic winds.

  • July 26, 2005 - Bottle of Water Artwork Stolen, Presumed Drunk - Yahoo!
    A bottle of melted water from the Antarctic, entitled "Weapon of Mass Destruction", was being shown at an art show when it disappeared from its display plinth. The artist wants it returned.

  • July 22, 2005 - Hobart New Base For Antarctic Birds' Protection - ABC
    A memorandum of understanding has been signed which makes Hobart the base for the protection of the albatross and petrel.

  • July 21, 2005 - Korea To Spend W70 Billion For Second Antarctic Base - BBC
    South Korea plans to build a second research base, this one to be sited near the center of Antarctica. Construction will begin in 2008 and will cost about $67 million (U.S.).

  • July 22, 2005 - Ice-bound Rescue Mission Recalled - BBC
    An exhibition detailing Sir Ernest Shackelton's rescue of his men left stranded on Elephant Island has been opened at the National Museum of Ireland.

  • July 20, 2005 - Futuristic Design Wins Competition for Antarctic Research Station - TerraDaily
    A modular station on elevated ski legs has won the competition for the new British Antarctic Survey (BAS) Halley Research Station. It can be towed further inland whe necessary (glacier flow causes the base to move onto the ice shelf) and can be jacked up above accumulated snow. The modules make it easy to reconfigure for changing needs. Similar story from Guardian Unlimited with different illustration of proposed station.

  • July 13, 2005 - Time On The Shelf - TerraDaily
    Robert Bindschadler, a glaciologist with NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center, talks about being lost on the West Antarctic Ice Sheet for a short period of time.

  • July 8, 2005 - Review of March Of the Penguins - RogerEbert
    Roger Ebert reviews the Warner Independent Films movie, March of the Penguins, which illustrates the hard life of Emperor penguins - the only bird to lay eggs in the Antarctic winter. He rates it at 3.5 stars as do the viewers. You can view trailers of the movie at this site.

  • June 30, 2005 - Warmer Air May Cause Increased Antarctic Sea Ice Cover - Terra Daily
    A new study shows that, in the Antarctic, increases in precipitation due to warmer air temperatures from greenhouse gas emissions may actually increase sea ice volume in the Antarctic's Southern Ocean.

  • June 27, 2005 - New Way to Gauge Whales' Age - The Australian
    Australian scientists are well on the way to developing a non-invasive and non-lethal method of taking skin samples from humpback whales to determine their age.

  • June 24, 2005 - Japan's Whaling Negotiator Draws Raves - Las Vegas Sun
    Japan did not win many battles at the IWC meeting where it sought to end the moratorium on commercial whale fishing, but all involved had praise for Japan's negotiator and said he was a skilled advocate for Japan's point of view. Similar story telling Japan's point of view on the IWC meeting at Terra Daily.

  • June 24, 2005 - Antarctic Telescope High On Australian Wishlist - Space Daily
    Australian astronomers are urging that the Australian government and astronomers around the world support the construction of an infra-red telescope at Dome C. This project was approved to begin this year, but lack of funds stalled the project.

  • June 23, 2005 - Whale Burger Joins Fast-Food Offerings In Japan - USA Today
    A fast food chain in northern Japan began offering a whale burger on Thursday, even as anti-whaling nations urged Japan to cut back on its catch at an international conference on whaling.

  • June 21, 2005 - Antarctic Concept Vehicle Unveiled - Terra Daily
    James Moon, an award-winning designer, has come up with a lightweight, eco-friendly vehicle for use in Antarctica. The designer worked closely with the British Antarctic Survey in developing his design.

  • June 20, 2005 - Japan To Double Whale Hunt - The Australian
    Japan has submitted a research plan that more than doubles its previous quota of minke whales and extends the hunt to other whales that are on the endangered species list.

  • June 17, 2005 - Antarctica: Polluters To Pay - News 24
    A two-week conference on pollution in the Antarctic wrapped up here on Friday, with delegates boasting a major breakthrough on a deal ensuring that polluters in the future will be held accountable for the messes they make in the region.

  • June 14, 2005 - Antarctic Ice Detachment Studied - The Washington Times
    A University of California-San Diego study says Antarctic ice fracturing occurs in episodes and may be tied to changes evolving over seasons. The study wanted to find out how icebergs detach from the main continental ice sheet as a way to determine the future stability of the entire Antarctic ice mass. The findings have been published as papers in Geophysical Research Letters.

  • JRun 13, 2005 - Antarctic Scientists Map Ocean Floor Near Palmer Station in Antarctica - Space Daily
    Using inflatable boats, a portable depth sounder with GPS, and a REMUS autonomous underwater vehicle, a team of scientists and engineers has created the first detailed, comprehensive chart of the ocean floor around Palmer Station in Antarctica, revealing previously unknown submerged rocks.

  • June 9, 2005 - Former Governor Appointed Honorary Antarctic Ambassador - ABC
    A former Tasmanian governor is again serving the state, this time as honorary Antarctic ambassador. The Tasmanian Government has appointed Sir Guy Green to the position, taking over from Tim Bowden, who has served a three-year term.

  • June 3, 2005 - Antarctic Workers Sad To See Iceberg Go - ABC
    A massive iceberg which has been lodged offshore from Australia's Casey Station in Antarctica is on the move. The iceberg, stretching more than 50 kilometers, has been snagged in Vincennes Bay for the past month. (Map of Australia's Casey Base Station region, Antarctica)

  • May 31, 2005 - Antarctica Conference In Sweden To Focus On Environment, Climate Change - Terra Daily
    Representatives of 50 governments, researchers and experts will meet for a two-week conference in Stockholm to discuss the Antarctic, especially environmental and climate change issues, the Swedish hosts said on Tuesday.

  • May 23, 2005 - It's Not Research - Japan's Whale Slaughter Is Commercial - The Australian
    Since 1991 whale watchers have spotted Migaloo, possibly the world's only pure white humpback whale, off the Queensland coast each year during its annual migration. But there are real fears that Migaloo's life - along with many other humpback, minke and fin whales - is in danger. (Similar story from The Washington Times)

  • May 22, 2005 - Antarctic Ice Sheet Thickening - ABC
    The Antarctic ice sheet appears to be growing in East Antarctica according to a new report in Science magazine. The authors emphasize that their work applies only to the interior and eastern portion of the ice sheet, but say the thickening may help mitigate sea level rise due to melting elsewhere on the continent.

  • May 22, 2005 - Robot To Explore Buried Ice Lake - Guardian Observer
    British scientists are going to use a robot to explore the bottom of Lake Ellsworth. the focus of the study will be microbes and sediments and will help add to information on past climate change in Antarctica.(More on this research effort)

  • May 17, 2005 - New Collision Looks Imminent for B-15A Iceberg - ESA
    A month after its collision with the Drygalski Ice Tongue, the B-15A iceberg seems to be heading directly for the tongue of the Aviator Glacier.

  • May 16, 2005 - Nations To Protest Over Japan Whaling - Sky News
    New Zealand, Great Britain and the United States will make a protest to the Japanese government over the annual whale hunt in Antarctic waters. Japan contends it is research, while others believe it to be thinly disguised commercial fishing.

  • May 15, 2005 - NZ To Fight Whale Slaughter - News 24
    New Zealand is considering taking Japan to the International Court of Justice (ICJ) over its plans to hunt endangered humpback whales in Antarctic waters.

  • May 14, 2005 - Piracy Risk Raised Over Whales - Weekend Australian
    Australia could be accused of piracy if it tried to stop Japanese whaling boats in Antarctic waters, federal Attorney General Philip Ruddock said today.

  • May 12, 2005 - Scientists Recruit Deep Seal Divers - Scotsman
    Elephant seals have been fitted with tiny computers to monitor the ocean temperature and salinity and to trace the migration routes of these mammals.

  • May 12, 2005 - Antarctic Runway For Jets - Australian
    The Australian Government has approved the building of an ice runway and supporting an air link between Hobart, Australia and Australia's Casey Station in Antarctica. This will allow scientists to more closely monitor the Southern Ocean and deliver scientists to their Antarctic destinations more efficiently.

  • May 9, 2005 - Illegal Fishing Vessels Spotted - Australian
    Three vessels, believed to be illegally fishing for the endangered Patagonian toothfish, have been spotted in the Southern Ocean and are being watched by Australian Fisheries and Customs officials.

  • April 21, 2005 - Antarctic Glaciers Show Retreat - BBC
    A large-scale study of glaciers, on the Antarctic peninsula, show that nearly 90% of the glaciers are losing mass. This is thought to be due to warming atmosphere, changing ocean currents and water temperatures. Similar story from USA Today.

  • April 19, 2005 - B-15A Iceberg Collides With Antarctic Ice Tongue - Space Daily
    The B-15A Iceberg has collided with the Drygalski Ice Tongue and broken off a 5 km. long section of the ice tongue. A good view of the collision and the resultant break was possible through the use of Envisat's Advanced Synthetic Aperture Radar system. Similar story from CNN on April 21.

  • April 18, 2005 - Antarctic Monitoring Cameras Installed On Boats - ABC
    All boats fishing in Antarctic waters must have on board two observers to monitor the catch. They have decided to use cameras, on a trial basis, to collect more data about the catches.

  • April 15, 2005 - New Zealand to Protest Japan's Bigger Whale Kill Plan... - ENN
    New Zealand rejected Japan's proposal to conduct a broader research program on whales. Their proposal would have led to the deaths of 800 whales per year. Currently they kill about 400 per year in this research.

  • April 12, 2005 - Wanted: Adventurous Women To Work In Antarctica - Yahoo!
    The British Antarctic Survey is making a concerted effort to recruit more tradeswomen to work at their bases in Antarctica.

  • April 4 , 2005 - World's Biggest Iceberg Begins Moving... - ENN
    The world's largest iceberg, B15A, is now moving out of McMurdo Sound where it had blocked sea access. This is good news for the Adelie penguin breeding colonies where penguins chicks faced starvation as penguin parents had to trek 110 miles across the ice for food. Similar story from News24

  • April 2 , 2005 - Ship Returns After Successful Supply Voyage - ABC
    Australia's Aurora Australis has returned to Hobart after a successful voyage supplying fuel, food and scientific supplies to Australian Antarctic stations. There was some fear the ship would be unable to break through unusually thick ice around Mawson.

  • April 1, 2005 - Japan Plans To Extend Whaling - Las Vegas Sun
    Japan has announced that it plans to extend its whaling research program in the Southern Ocean, which opponents say is commercial whaling in disguise. This year's hunt ended 440 minke whales killed for research purposes.

  • March 31 , 2005 - Antarctic Tourists May Face Tougher Regulations - ABC
    A plan for regulating tourist travel to Heard and McDonald Islands has been proposed to try to protect plants, seabirds and seals from potential diseases and harm that could be caused by tourists.

  • March 31, 2005 - Scientists Compile Protist Handbook - ABC
    A comprehensive guide to Antarctic protists, tiny marine organisms that play a key role in carbon dioxide exchange, has been published by the Australian Antarctic Division. Photos of several different Antarctic protists can be seen at The Antarctic Protist Classication website.

  • March 28, 2005 - Antarctic Oil Painting Shrouded In Mystery - Yahoo
    The oldest known painting of the Antarctic, painted during Captain James Cook's historic expedition, was revealed as restorers used an x-ray to look under a 230 year old painting by landscape artist, William Hodges. Why the artist painted over the earlier painting is not clear.

  • March 21, 2005 - Giant Iceberg B-15A Edges Past Floating Ice Pier - Space Daily
    The world's largest floating object, an iceberg in McMurdo Sound is moving again. It had been grounded for a few months, but now is being transported close to the end the Drygalski Ice Tongue. Its movements are being watched very carefully.

  • March 20, 2005 - Antarctic Climber Aims High For 100th Birthday - Chicago Sun Times
    Norman Vaughan, a world-class adventurer, wants to spend his 100th birthday climbing the mountain in Antarctica that is named after him. He was part of Admiral Byrd's 1928 expedition and climbed the mountain on his 89th birthday in 1994. (Photo of Norm Vaughan).

  • March 13 , 2005 - International Expedition Flies to Antarctic - Novosti
    An international youth group has gone to Antarctica in the name of peace. The team includes members of all former Soviet republics and Chile. A photo will be taken of the team's peace message and will be beamed via satellite and the International Space Station to the internet. (Update on March 21 from Novosti)

  • March 9, 2005 - Korea To Build Second Base for Antarctic Studies - Korea Times
    South Korea is planning to set up a second research station by the end of 2009. They are currently doing feasibility studies.

  • March 6, 2005 - Marathoner's Record Chase Ends In Antarctica - Boston Globe
    65-year old Charles Monahan has been unsuccessful in his bid to run a marathon on all seven continents. He injured his leg while running in Antarctica and was only able to complete half the distance there.

  • March 4, 2005 - Australia Powerless Against Remote Toothfish Raiders - Yahoo
    The fact that boats fishing for the protected Patagonian toothfish in Australian waters are flagged to countries that are not a part of an international pact to protect the fish leaves Australia unable to legally take any action. (Similar story from The Australian)

  • Feb. 25, 2005 - Antarctic Ice Shelf Retreat Nothing New ... - Space Daily
    Scientists have reported that a study of George VI Ice Shelf on the Antarctic Peninsula experienced an extensive retreat about 9500 year ago, and that this retreat coincided with a shift of ocean currents that occurred after a long period of warmth. (view map showing George VI Ice Shelf from UNEP Global Environment Outlook)

  • Feb. 9, 2005 - Polar Expedition Returns to Zhongshan Station - Space Daily
    A Chinese team has completed a grueling 63-day, 3,078-kilometer trip to explore the highest ice peak in Antarctica and has returned to its home base. The scientists set up an automatic weather station.

  • Feb. 7, 2005 - Icebreakers In Support of Science - NSF
    Icebreakers play a key role in the maintenance of Antarctic science stations. Typically the Polar Star and Polar Sea are used for this job, but because the Polar Sea was in drydock, the Polar Program chartered the Russian Icebreaker, Krazin, to assist in operations this year. (Similar story from Russian point of view by Novosti; another story on this topic with photo from USA Today).

  • Feb. 7, 2005 - Antarctica's Ice Seems To Be Safe ... - USA Today
    Chilean glaciologists using radar developed at the University of Kansas have found that the West Antarctic Ice Sheet may be thicker than previously thought. In fact it may be hundreds of feet thicker in some areas. They warn that the deeper the ice, the more potential impact on sea level rise should it melt. They say there is some instability in West Antarctica though the temperature seems to be holding steady or cooling in other parts of the continent. Radar developed by the PRISM scientists and the Remote Sensing Lab at the University of Kansas was involved in this study!

  • Feb. 3, 2005 - Icebreaker Krasin Continues Operation In Antarctic - Novosti
    The Russian icebreaker, Krasin, has helped escort a re-supply ship to the U.S. McMurdo Station.They had previously helped a fuel ship leave the station after delivery. This help has kept McMurdo running after damage to the U.S. icebreakers made it difficult for ships to reach the station. (Story on previous mission. Story with photos on this mission from NSF )

  • Feb. 2, 2005 - Antarctic's Ice Melting Faster - BBC
    Scientists from the British Antarctic Survey report that over 13,000 sq. kilometers of sea ice has been lost around the Antarctic peninsula over the past 50 years. This loss is allowing the glaciers to flow into the ocean many times faster than was estimated in most sea-level rise models. PRISM Principal Investigator, Dr. Prasad Gogineni, was invited to give a talk to the British Antarctic Survey on the KU radar work. See similar story from TimesOnline - Britain.

  • Feb. 2, 2005 - US Tanker Engine Failure Stops Her and Krasin Icebreaker - Novosti
    The fuel tanker, Paul Buck, experienced an engine failure as it traveled from McMurdo station to the Ross Sea. Since it is stationary in the middle of the pack ice, the Russian icebreaker, Krasin, will keep the ship from being crushed as repairs are being made and then will continue escorting the ship out of the ice.

  • Jan. 29, 2005 - Antarctic Planes Discover New Frontiers - ABC
    New planes have finally arrived in Antarctica and have already proved valuable to Australian researchers. (Scroll down to see January 7 story about the planes.)

  • Jan. 24, 2005 - Study Reveals Albatrosses' Flying Patterns - IOL
    Scientists studying the albatross have shown that the birds fly from their breeding grounds in the sub-Antarctic to the south-west Indian ocean. The study is being done to try to reduce loss of these sea-birds to long-line fishing.

  • Jan. 23, 2005 - Iceberg Crosses Path of A Russian Icebreaker ... - Novosti
    A giant iceberg (B-15A) blocked the path of a convoy of ships trying to reach McMurdo, a U.S. station in the Antarctic. The convoy was led by a Russian icebreaker on loan from the Russian government. (See earlier story explaining the Russian icebreaker's role)

  • Jan. 22, 2005 - Post Office Set Up In Antarctica - China.org
    A post office at China's Great Wall Station in Antarctica has been reopened. This is the first time in two decades that mail from China has been delivered to Antarctica.

  • Jan. 19, 2005 - B-15A Iceberg's Close Encounter Monitored by Envisat - SpaceDaily
    Iceberg B-15A is on a collision course with a floating pier of ice known as the Drygalski ice tongue and its progress is being monitored by Envisat radar. It appears to have slowed dramatically, which may mean that the seabed around the Drygalski ice tongue is shallow. (Jan 21 update by Yahoo!)

  • Jan. 19, 2005 - Chinese Engineer Receives Medical Treatment ... During Antarctic Traverse- NSF
    A Chinese engineer who became ill while traversing East Antarctica has been airlifted by the U.S. to Amundsen-Scott South Pole Station and later to New Zealand for treatment. He is one of the group exploring the highest icecap in Antarctica.This article includes some nice photos.

  • Jan. 10, 2005 - Polar Explorers Climb Peak of Antarctica - China Daily
    A Chinese team has been successful in their bid to climb the north Peak of Dome A. Dome A is the highest icecap in Antarctica at 4,083 meters above sea level. (See earlier story from CISTC; see Jan. 19 article with photo from SpaceDaily)

  • Jan. 9, 2005 - Russian Aircraft Fails To Leave South Pole ... - Novosti
    Bad weather for the past six days at McMurdo has grounded a Russian air expedition that had restored a An-3T aircraft. (See earlier story from State and Power; Photo of aircraft at Ulster Aviation )

  • Jan. 9, 2005 - Polar Record Explorer Returns Home - Scotsman
    Craig Mathieson, who recently completed the first Scottish expedition to the South Pole, in spite of injuries, has returned to the UK.

  • Jan. 7, 2005 - Scientists Excited By Antarctic Air Service - ABC
    The first mission has been flown in one of the intra-continental planes that will be supplied by the Australian Antarctic Division. These planes will be used as an airlink between Australia's research stations and should really improve logistics. (See earlier story and photos of the planes by AAD)

  • Jan. 5, 2005 - Icebergs In New Zealand Waters For First Time In 57 Years - Yahoo
    For the first time since 1948, sailors have encountered icebergs in New Zealand waters.

  • Jan. 5, 2005 - UN-Backed Expedition To Sail To Antarctica - Scoop
    A two-masted schooner will sail from South America to study the impacts of global warming and environmental change on Antarctica. This is part of the UN Environmental Program (UNEP).

  • Jan. 4, 2005 - Architects Conquer Hostile Antarctica - Bahrain Tribune
    Polar stations are quite a challenge to build, but three architects have been chosen to compete for the opportunity to build Halley VI.

  • Jan. 3, 2005 - Antarctic May Have Iced Over When Atmosphere Changed - Space Daily
    New data from ocean core samples challenges the theory that the Antarctic ice sheet developed because of a shift in ocean currents. Fossils of cold-water plankton have been found in Eocene sediments off the Antarctic coast.

  • Dec. 24, 2004 - Penguins Escape Huge Earthquake - BBC
    A quake measuring 8.1 on the Richter scale hits the Macquarie Islands, but it appears that the King penguins there escaped disaster. (more about the quake at News24)

  • Dec. 23, 2004 - Couple At The Bottom Of The World - Scotsman
    A man and wife have succeeded in their bid to be the first English couple to reach the South Pole on an unsupported trek.

  • Dec. 22, 2004 - UK-Led Team Traces Amundsen's South Pole Route - Yahoo
    A 37-day trek to the South Pole, following the route used by Amundsen, has ended successfully. The explorers will continue their trek hoping to cross the continent faster than any previous group.

  • Dec. 21, 2004 - Russian Ice-breaker Krasin Heading for ... McMurdo - Novosti
    The Russians have sent an ice-breaker to assist in the resupply of McMurdo station. Assistance was requested by the U.S. government because one of the U.S. icebreakers is out of commission. The Russian ship is scheduled to join the other U.S. icebreaker around the 10th of January.

  • Dec. 20, 2004 - School Polar Venturers Back Home - BBC
    A teacher and group of students from a small English college have returned safely from their field trip to the South Pole. This was the first "school trip" to the Pole. (Similar story from Skynews)

  • Dec. 19, 2004 - Australian Scientists Renew Call For Antarctic Air Link - ABC
    Australian scientists say that many expeditions are finding it difficult to get to Antarctica and must go via transportation provided by other countries. They feel their government should fund an air link as it benefits from the work done.

  • Dec. 14, 2004 - Penguins Face Starvation Threat - BBC
    A huge iceberg blocks adult penguins' access to food for their chicks threatening the survival of thousands of chicks on Cape Royds.

  • Dec. 14, 2004 - Electronic Lines On An Epic Voyage... - Scotsman
    Simon Faithfull, an artist, uses a Palm Pilot to draw things that he sees while on an ice-breaker in the Southern Ocean.He then e-mails the drawings to his subscribers.

  • Dec. 11, 2004 - Antarctic 'On The Edge Of Disaster' - Guardian
    A British biologist warns that Antarctic animals are quite sensitive to climate change and may become extinct if the waters in the Southern Ocean rise even a "couple of degrees." He explains why.

  • Dec. 11, 2004 - Scientists Study Antarctic Life - BBC
    A German-led expedition is studying life forms that live in and on ice to determine how life might evolve on frozen planets. (Read Dr. Thomas' journals as the expedition progresses and see earlier story on the expedition)

  • Dec. 8, 2004 - Faizabad Scientist Bound For Antarctica Expedition - Times of India
    An environmental scientist from Avadh University has left to join the 24th Indian Scientific expedition to Antarctica. This expedition will investigate how organisms have adapted to the recent depletions of the ozone hole.


Older news items can be found in the Antarctic News Archive.


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