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Antarctic Research Programs


Australian Antarctic Division - Australia's Antarctic Program that supports the Australian National Antarctic Research Expeditions (ANARE).

Institute of Antarctic and Southern Ocean Studies The Institute of Antarctic and Southern Ocean Studies (IASOS) is a national key centre for postgraduate teaching and research established at the University of Tasmania to promote and focus Australian academic activity concerned with Antarctica and its surrounding ocean.

Joint Australian Centre for Astrophysical Research in Antarctica JACARA facilitates Australian parcticipation in the development of Antarctic astronomy. Currently the major focus is on site testing to quantify the limitations to astronomical observations across the spectrum and determine the optimum site for an international observatory.


Belgian Antarctic Research Programme Areas of research interest concentrate on: ecodynamics of the Southern Ocean and interactions with the climate; evolution and protection of marine ecosystems; and role of the Antarctic in global changes


Danish Center for Remote Sensing (DCRS) Located at the Technical University of Denmark (DTU), the centre conducts research relating to instruments for remote
sensing and their application to Earth observation and Earth Science.


Polar Libraries and Information Sources The University of Lapland, Rovaniemi, Finland offers an extensive list of polar information sites.


Alfred Wegener Institute The German National Centre for Polar and Marine Research focuses on scientific research in the polar regions, national coordination of polar research projects and logistic support of polar expeditions from other German institutes. Research work is carried out on board RV "Polarstern". The Institute focus is to achieve a better understanding of the complex relationship between water, ice, the atmosphere and the seabed as well as the fauna and flora.

Great Britain

British Antarctic Survey Responsible for the British Government's scientific research in the Antarctic, South Georgia, and the South Sandwich Islands. BAS research covers all aspects of science and exploits the unique natural laboratory
conditions in the Antarctic to address problems of global and regional relevance.

Leeds University Physics and Astronomy Department is divided into three research groups. One group, The High Energy Cosmic Ray Group, carries out research with a cosmic ray air shower detector array situated at the South Pole, Antarctica. The group is also involved in a world-wide collaborative effort known as the Auger project to build a much larger array.

Scott Polar Research Institute Different from the British Antarctic Survey! Part of the University of Cambridge. SPRI is the oldest research centre in the world which covers both the Arctic and Antarctic regions. Research groups include a Remote Sensing Group, a Sea Ice and Polar Oceanography Group. Research also focuses on polar ecology and polar history. Links to The ICSU World Data Centre C (Glaciology) and the SCAR Working Group on Glaciology home page.

Polar Museusm Link This directory provides brief details of museums known to have collections relating to the Arctic and Antarctic. Compiled by William Mills, Librarian and Information Officer at the Scott Polar Research Institute, as part of a new reference work Keyguide to information sources on the polar and cold regions.


Global Land Ice Monitoring from Space (GLIMS) A project designed to monitor the world's glaciers primarily using data from the ASTER (Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and reflection Radiometer) instrument aboard the EOS-AM1 spacecraft, scheduled for launch in June 1998.

National Institute of Polar Research - Oversees scientific ivestigation and logistical support of investigation in the Arctic and Antarctic. Research group activities include: upper atmospheric physics, meteorology, glaciology, solid earth geophysics, geology and geomorphology, antarctic meteorites, marine biology, terrestrial biology, and polar region engineering.

South Africa

South African National Antarctic Programme South Africa was one of the original 12 signatories of the Antarctic Accord and has physically been involved in Antarctica since 1959 when it took over the old Norwegian base. Since then three bases have been built on Queen Maud land, all of which have since been decommissioned due to snow build up. In order to circumvent the accumulation of snow and consequent deterioration of the base, it was decided to build the new base, SANAE IV, on a rock outcrop (nunatuk) called Vesleskarvet. Scientific studies into upper air-, ionospheric- and magnetospheric physics are conducted by teams from the Universities of Potchefstroom and Natal (Durban).


COLDTECH Integrated part of Lulea University of Technology that supports research and development within the field of cold climate technology/engineering.

United States

70South This site focuses on promoting Antarctica and Antarctic related topics, in parcticular awareness of the continent, its value, its beauty and its Science. Site visitors include Antarctic enthusiasts, having either been there or involved in research back home. Visitors can read and post and comment on arcticles. This is thus an interactive online news site that enables visitors to become a publishers as well.

The Antarctic Marine Geology Research Facility Housed at the Florida State University Department of Geology. The facility is designed specifically as a national repository for geological materials collected in polar regions. Supported by the National Science Foundation.

Antarctic Journal of the United States Arcticles about results of current Antarctic research and operations.

Antarctica Meteorology Research Center University of Wisconsin. Offers access to real-time meteorological and remotely sensed data as well as an extensive archive of meteorological and remotely sensed data.

Antarctica - The Dynamic Heart of It All Describes the activities of the Marine and Coastal Geology Program of the United States Geological Survey (USGS).

Arctic and Antarctic Research Center (AARC) The Arctic and Antarctic Research Center of the University of California at San Diego, maintains an archive of more than 45,000 satellite overpasses of the Arctic and Antarctic. Our data is continually tracked and recorded by antennas at McMurdo Station and Palmer Station in Antarctica and by the U.S. Coast Guard icebreakers Polar Sea and Polar Star, while operating at high latitudes.

Center for Geophysical Studies of Ice and Climate CEGSIC, located in the Physics Department at St. Olaf College, is a research project focused toward understanding the response of the world's ice masses to global change. More specifically, CEGSIC
utilizes the tools of ice-penetrating radar and satellite imagery to study the dynamics of glaciers and ice sheets in various parts of the world.

Climate Monitoring and Diagnostics Laboratory (CMDL) CMDL, of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, in Boulder, Colorado, conducts research related to atmospheric constituents that are capable of forcing change in the climate of the earth through modification of the atmospheric radiative environment, for example greenhouse gases and aerosols, and those that may cause depletion of the global ozone layer.

Cold Regions Research and Engineering Lab (CRREL) A facility of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers that addresses the problems and opportunities unique to the world's cold regions.

Defense Meteorological Satellite Program (DMSP) The Defense Meteorological Satellite Program (DMSP) is a Department of Defense (DoD) program run by the Air Force Space and Missle Systems Center (SMC). The DMSP program designs, builds, launches, and maintains several near polar orbiting, sun synchronous satellites monitoring the meteorological, oceanographic, and solar terrestrial physics environments.

Glacier Research Group Part of the University of New Hampshire's Climate Change Research Center. The Glacier Research Group specializes in the recovery, analysis and interpretation of chemical records available from air, snow and ice. The Glacier Research Group is developing a series of such records from atmospherically teleconnected high latitude (e.g., Antarctica, Greenland and Canadian Arctic) and low to middle latitude sites (e.g., Asia and North America) in order to investigate a variety of global change problems.

Global Change Research Program - Cold Regions Research (USGS) Observing, understanding, and predicting changes in the cryosphere, glaciers, frozen ground (permafrost), snow cover, and floating ice (sea, lake, and river) is important to the U.S. Global Change Research Program, because the cryosphere is the most sensitive component of the geosphere to global climate warming. Cold Regions research involves Arctic and Antarctic databases.

Global Change Research Program - Paleoclimate Research (USGS) The USGS conducts interdisciplinary research on paleoclimates, paleohydrology, paleoecology, and paleoceanography. These studies incorporate Arctic and Antarctic databases.

Hamilton College Undergraduate Research in Antarctica This program enables undergraduate students from institutions across the country to become involved in Antarctic scientific work aboard the United States' Antarctic Program's research vessels. The site contains information about current research and past projects conducted by undergraduates.

Institute for Arctic and Alpine Research (INSTAAR) University of Colorado.

JACEE Long Duration Balloon The Japanese-American Collaborative Emulsion Experiment includes several experiments that employ a series of balloon-borne lead-emulsion chambers designed to directly measure the primary composition and spectra of cosmic rays at energies in the region of 1TeV-1000TeV.

National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) This home page describes some of the interesting facts and features of the Arctic and Antarctic regions and how we observe these regions using satellites. The primary science focus is on sea ice, which is ice formed in the oceans, and how we study it using RADAR or SAR imagery.

National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Antarctic Meteorites. Recently, the National Science Foundation (NSF), the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), and the Smithsonian Institution joined in a cooperative program to study Antarctic meteorites. The NSF, with decades of experience in exploring this harsh environment, is providing support for field research. NASA and the Smithsonian Institution are providing for the curation of meteorites recovered from Antarctica, and all three agencies sponsor research on these valuable specimens.

National Geophysical Data Center (NGDC) is part of NOAA. NGDC manages environmental data in the fields of marine geology and geophysics, paleoclimatology, solar-terrestrial physics, solid earth geophysics, and glaciology (snow and ice). In each of these fields NGDC also operates a World Data Center (WDC A) discipline center.

National Ice Core Laboratory NICL, located at the University of Colorado, is a facility for storing, curating, and studying ice cores recovered from the polar regions of the world.

National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC) NSIDC, located at the University of Colorado, is a data and information resource for those studying snow and ice, and their importance to the Earth system. We archive analogue and digital snow and ice data, create and distribute data products, and maintain a large library collection in support of snow and ice research.

Office of Polar Programs (OPP) National Science Foundation (NSF) NSF's programs for support of research in the Antarctic and the Arctic acknowledge the need to understand the relationships of these polar regions with global processes and the need to understand the polar regions as unique entities. NSF's Office of Polar Programs thus provides support for investigations in a range of scientific disciplines. In both polar regions, NSF provides to investigators the operational capability to deploy and support modern field and laboratory science.

For a fact sheet on the U.S. Antarctic Program, see:

A separate program to support artists and writers in Antarctica whose primary form of expression is not journalistic. For more information contact or Guy Guthridg by email or phone: (703) 292-8033.

Pacific Area Icebreaker Operations Includes Polar Class Icebreaker General Information and reports of the vessels Polar Sea and Polar Star.

Palmer Long Term Ecological Research Program (LTER) of the University of California, Santa Barbara (et al.) focuses on the pelagic marine ecosystem in the Antarctic, and the ecological processes which link the extent of annual pack ice to the biological dynamics of different trophic levels.

Polar Meteorology Group Presented by the Byrd Polar Research Center at Ohio State University. This site includes an Antarctic picture album.

Polar Research Board (PRB) The PRB is a unit of the non-governmental National Research Council, which is the operational organization of the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Engineering, and the Institute of Medicine. The PRB operates a number of committees and provides independent analysis to the federal government on matters of science and technology affecting public policy on environmental quality, natural resources, and other issues in BOTH polar regions.

Polar Science Center (PSC) PSC, part of the Applied Physics Laboratory at the University of Washington, focuses on observing and modeling the physical processes that control the nature and distribution of sea ice, the structure and circulation in high latitude oceans, and the interactions among air, ocean, and ice.

Raytheon Polar Services - Provides logistical support for the United States Antarctic Program. Oversees operations at Antarctic facilities, including US-operated research vessels.

Secrets of the Ice from the Museum of Science, Boston.This web site provides the necessary materials needed to explore a variety of information related to Antarctica. Such as the weather,the wilderness,and current events.

Scientific Visualization Studio On this web site you'll find text, visualizations, pictures, and links relating an exciting research project studying Antarctica.

South Pole Observatory -- South Pole, Antarctica One of the Climate Monitoring and Diagnostics Laboratory (CMDL) sites. South Pole Observatory maintains monitoring programs in greenhouse and other trace gases, atmospheric aerosols, solar radiation variability, stratospheric ozone and meteorological parameters, and conducts field programs to understand chemical changes in the Antarctic region that might impact climate and global change.

Space Physics Research Group (SPRG) Located at the University of California, Berkeley, SPRG conducts experimental research in space plasma physics on a variety of different spacecraft covering the earth's magnetosphere, auroral zone, tail region, the interplanetary solar wind, and in the near-space environments of other planets. The site offers a connection to their long duration ballooning experiments in Antarctica.

Teachers Experiencing Antarctica and the Arctic (TEA) Join teachers as they venture to points north and south and parcticipate in Arctic and Antarctic research expeditions. Follow their adventures through daily electronic journals, correspond with them while they are in the field, chat with them through CU-SeeMe sessions. Keep up-to-date on the science and life at the poles. Upcoming Arctic field season begins in June 1998; Antarctic field season begins in October.

United States component of the International Trans-Antarctic Scientific Expedition USITASE. Because of the remoteness of the continent, Antarctica is an ideal location to monitor biogeochemical cycles and local-to-global scale climate change. The international team of researchers will acquire short ice cores in transects across the Antarctic Ice Sheet to address two key scientific objectives: 1) to determine the spatial variability of Antarctic climate over the last 200 to 1000 years; and 2) to determine the environmental variability in Antarctica over the last 200 to 1000 years.

The University of Wisconsin - Madison Antarctic Projects Home Page Includes links to AWS stations, and Antarctic satellite imagry.

World Data Center-A for Paleoclimatology (NOAA) Includes research about atmospheric gases, glaciology, meteorology, oceanography, remote sensing, etc.

WAISCORES The WAISCORES project will recover and interpret two ice cores from the West Antarctic ice sheet. The information collected during this project will improve our ability to predict the significance of future climate changes to our society.


The Council of Managers of National Antarctic Programs (COMNAP) COMNAP along with its Standing Committee on Antarctic Logistics and Operations (SCALOP) were established in 1988 to regularly bring together the national program officials who are responsible for Antarctic operations and science support. The major functions are the effective sharing of information and the realization of international cooperation.

Earth Observation Guide and Directory Service - Antarctic Data Base Branch of the European Space Agency.

The European Science Foundation An association of 62 member organisations devoted to basic scientific research in 21 European countries. Since bing established in 1974, ESF has coordinated a wide range of pan-European scientific initiatives. Branch of Life, Environmental, and Earth Sciences (includes numerous Arctic and Antarctic initiatives).

Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research (SCAR) SCAR is an interdisciplinary committee of ICSU, The International Council of Scientific Unions, and it is charged with the initiation, promotion and co-ordination of scientific research in Antarctica. SCAR also provides scientific advice to the Antarctic Treaty System.