Antarctica is Earth's southernmost continent, underlying the South Pole. It is situated in the Antarctic region of the southern hemisphere, almost entirely south of the Antarctic Circle, and is surrounded by the Southern Ocean. It is the fifth-largest continent in area after Asia, Africa, North America, and South America. About 98% of Antarctica is covered by ice, which averages at least 1.6 kilometres (1.0 mi) in thickness. While Antarctica is a largely inhospitable environment, its unique global position makes it a fascinating destination for scientists and researchers from around the world and most countries maintain a research station on Antarctica's icy surface.

Antarctica made it into mainstream media in January of 2009 when tectonic activity caused a massive sinkhole (visible from space) to consume a large portion of the Ross Ice Shelf beneath the Amundsen-Scott Antarctic Research Facility. Dozens of researchers were killed in the catastrophic collapse.

During the post-war Albany Trials, it was revealed to the American public that Antarctica was the site of one of the world's largest cover-ups of covert military action. The Amundsen-Scott research station was the site of a battle between a multi-national joint military operation that culminated with the near detonation of a 100-megaton nuclear warhead beneath the Antarctic ice. Were it not for the selfless actions of Richard Ray converting the nuclear explosion into a near harmless shadowy energy at the cost his own corporeal body, the thermonuclear detonation would have resulted in a global flood.

Major IC Events

Antarctica was a major site of activity during the Volume Eight storyline "In This Twilight."


Amundsen-Scott Antarctic Research Facility
Colobanth Research Facility

Antarctica in the News

May 28, 2009

SHANGHAI — China will do preparatory work for the drilling of deep Antarctic glacier ice core at the Amundsen-Scott South Pole Research Station in July, a scientist said here Friday.

In China's 26th Antarctic scientific expedition, scientists will build a deep drilling work shop and install drilling machines, said Li Yuansheng, head of China's Kunlun Station, the country's first research station on the continent's inland. The drilling will be a part of a multi-national scientific research endeavor to help understand the origins of life here on earth through the chemical and biological histories contained within deep Antarctic core samples.

In January, China set up the Kunlun station at Dome Argus, the pole's highest icecap at 4,093 meters above the sea level with the assistance of researchers from the U.S. operated Amundsen-Scott South Pole Station.

China's 25th Antarctic scientific expedition team left in October for a 173-day trip, the longest in China's polar expedition history, and returned to Shanghai Thursday. China has another two research stations in Antarctica. The Changcheng (Great-Wall) Station, founded in February 1985, is south of King George Island. The Zhongshan Station, built in February 1989, is south of Prydz Bay on the Mirror Peninsula, eastern of Larsemann Hills.

Six countries, including the United States, Russia, Japan, France, Italy and Germany, have already built inland research stations in Antarctica. Wei Wenliang, an official for polar expedition affairs with the State Oceanic Administration, said China is planning to build an aid center in Australia to help Antarctic research.

The center, which will be in Sydney or Hobart, will help scientists get to the Zhongshan and Kunlun stations quicker by flights and provide them with more fresh food, Wei added.

Scientists believe that further study of microbial life found in deep core samples in Antarctica could help with the search for the origins of Evolved abilities in humanity. The Amundsen-Scott Research Station has been the center of unusual reports of Evolved activity in the last year, with two seperate cited incidents of accidental teleportation to the Antarctic region.

January 27, 2010

Associated Press
January 27, 2010

An unexpected tragedy struck a very unlikely place in the world recently. On January 16th, during preparation for the second phase of Antarctic deep core drilling, the global Antarctic research teams at the Amundsen-Scott Antarctic Research Facility at the south pole accidentally drilled into a pocket of methane gas trapped within layers of the arctic ice. It is unknown at this time what caused the ignition of the gas, but the resulting explosion created a rapidly-expanding sinkhole to appear in the south pole ice shelf, causing the destruction of the Amundsen-Scott Facility and a loss of an untold number of its researchers.

Word first arrived of the accident on the 17th, when regularly scheduled communications at the station were not transmitted, and a distress beacon signal was detected over the south pole station. A joint United States and Chinese rescue team was dispatched from McMurdo station on Ross Island to help with the recovery of the wounded and injured. Exact statistics on the death toll at Amundsen-Scott is not known at this time, but the facility had been housing 43 summer-season staff and 15 researchers from the People's Republic of China.

Stunning satellite photographs of the sinkhole and the remains of Amundsen-Scott tell the tragic tale, and a more in-depth coverage of the collapse will be followed in the months to come.

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