Antarctica — The mainland surrounding the South Pole is south of the Southern Arctic Circle without going beyond its borders.
Occupying just 10% of the Earth’s surface, Antarctica has very large reserves of ice: about 90% of our planet’s total ice. If this number is expressed as a percentage of fresh water, approximately 75% of the world’s drinking water will be obtained.
The area equals 13,975 thousand sq.km. It also includes shelf glaciers, adjacent islands and glacial domes; their joint area is 1582 thousand square kilometers. But if you take into account also the mainland cliff, it will come out that the entire territory of Antarctica is located on 16355 thousand sq.km.
Almost all the banks are shaped like a glacial cliff, the height of which reaches several tens of meters.
In the direction of South America stretched the Antarctic Peninsula, on which is Cape Prime — the northernmost place of the mainland.
The uplands and mountains
Antarctica are considered the highest mainland in the world. It has an average height of 2350 m, while the average altitude of our planet is approximately 900 m. Such indicators are attributed to the presence of ice, which is almost three times less than the density of rocks.
In addition to glaciers on the mainland there are mountains. The system of mountain ranges dividing it in two is referred to as the Transantarctic Mountains. The farthest point from the Earth’s surface in Antarctica is Mount Vinson, at which altitude reaches up to 5140 m.
In Antarctica is located the world’s southernmost active volcano – Mount Eribus on about. Ross.
Ice — Antarctica’s wealth
Ice occupies almost the entire territory of the mainland. Only 0.3% of the land is ice-free. The ice is so thick that entire mountainous areas lurk beneath it. Several peaks can be seen in some places that protrude above the ice surface. Such protrusions are called nunataks.
The age of some ice sheets and strata is as long as a million years old.
In countries such as the UAE, where clean fresh water is in great need, projects are being developed to deliver icebergs by sea from Antarctica.
The statement “Ice is it and in Africa ice” is at least wrong. As the Eskimos have about 50 different names to indicate snow, so do ice objects in Antarctica have several names, depending on the parameter by which ice is characterized.
Durable ice is called ice in solid state, which is attached to the Antarctic land.
Shelf ice is such ice that forms a ridge more than 2 meters above sea level.
If several ice floats simultaneously in the water, this mixture is called pack ice.
Breaking— passage through pack ice, on which can sail the ship without great difficulty.
A small space in open water surrounded by ice is referred to as wormwood.
Antarctic convergenceis called the point at which colder water from Antarctica meets and flows under warmer subantarctic water. The convergence position can vary by up to 100 km.
climate in Antarctica is severe due to blowing strong winds and low temperatures. In winter the temperature may fall below -70 °C. The minimum temperature ever recorded on Earth using contact thermometers was here on July 21, 1983, and was —89.2 °C. Many later began to state that allegedly “recorded” an even lower indicator of cold, but when using data from the satellite. And such a method of measurement is not the most reliable and not approved by all.
In areas near the center of Antarctica, polar night and polar day can take place for months.