This post is about the remotest continent of the world – the highest, driest, windiest, emptiest, coldest place on earth. Here we present you 20 cool facts about Antarctica!
1. You cannot work in Antarctica unless your wisdom teeth and appendix are removed. Surgeries are not made at the stations in Antarctica, so you should have your wisdom teeth and appendix removed even if they’re absolutely healthy.
2. Antarctica is also the world’s driest place.
In fact the driest place on the planet is located in Antarctica and called the Dry Valleys.
3. Like some countries (Australia, .au, Germany, .de) the continent of Antarctica has its own top-level domain = .aq. It would be unfair if it has not! Even Mc’Donald Islands do!
4. 53 million years ago, Antarctica was so warm that palm trees lived along its shores. The temperature on the continent soared above 20C.
5. Metallica played a gig in Antarctica called Freeze ‘Em All, making them the first band to have played on every continent. The band visited all seven continents in one year!
6. There used to be a nuclear power station in Antarctica. McMurdo station is the largest community in Antartica, it has been operated by the U.S. since 1962.
7. Antarctica has a Fire Department. It belongs to the Mc Murdo station we mentioned above and employs professional firefighters.
8. Despite the extreme temperatures, there are 1150 different species of fungi identified to survive in Antarctica. Fungi perfectly adaps to extreme low temperatures, continuous and repeated freeze and thawing cycles.
9. Antarctica (technically) contains every timezone on the planet. All longitude lines we use to define time zones meet at the two poles.
10. No polar bears live in Antarctica. You may see them in the Arctic or Canada, if you wish.
11. There is a bar in Antarctica. It is the world’s southernmost bar. You may have a very cold one at the bar of the Vernadsky Research Station.
12. The coldest temperature ever recorded on Earth was minus 128.56 degrees Fahrenheit (minus 89.2 degrees Celsius). It was registered on July 21, 1983, at Vostok station of Antarctica.
13. Antarctica is the fifth largest continent. Its area is equal to 14.0 million squre kilometers. 14. 99% of Antarctica is covered by ice. The glacier covering the continets is often called the Ice Sheet.
15. The average thickness of Antarctic ice is about 1 mile (1.6 kilometers). Antarctica approximately has 70% of all fresh water on Earth!
16. The Transantarctic Mountains of Antarctica divide the continent into East and West sections. Stretching for 3500 they are one fo the the longest mountain ranges in the world.
17. The existence of Antarctica was completely unknown until the continent was first spotted in 1820. People previously thought it was just a group of islands.
18. Norwegian explorer Roald Amundsen was the first human to reach the South Pole. He left an English explorer Robert Falcon Scott behind and arrived at the continent on December 14, 1911 and planted the flag of his nation.
19. Following the secret negotiations twelve countries signed the Antarctic Treaty in 1959 to dedicate the continent to peaceful research activities. Today the treaty is already signed by 48 nations.
20. In January 1979, Emile Marco Palma became the first child born on the southernmost continent. That was a planned action of Argentina to claim a part of Antarctica. The country sent a pregnant women there on purpose.
In the eternal quest to bring order to chaos.