What are the Structures in Antarctica?

Antarctica is a remote, icy continent at the southernmost tip of the world. With no permanent residents or government, the continent has become a location for scientific research and exploration. Despite its inhospitable environment, there are many structures that have been built in Antarctica — some to support exploration and science, some for military interests, and some simply for the thrill of adventure.

From research bases and memorials to monuments and airstrips, the structures in Antarctica are a tantalizing reminder that man can build to survive and thrive no matter where they go. Read on to learn more about the fascinating Man-made structures in Antarctica.

Research Bases

The most common structures in Antarctica are research bases, also known as “stations.” Research bases are put in place to allow scientists and other researchers to study the Antarctic environment and gain a better understanding of how the continent has changed over time. Research bases are typically equipped with laboratories, living quarters, and other facilities necessary to support the scientific study of Antarctica.

Most of the research bases in Antarctica are run by a combination of governments and scientific organisations from various countries. The largest and most famous research base is McMurdo Station, established by the United States in the mid-20th century. This station is managed by the United States Antarctic Program and is home to approximately 1,000 personnel each year.

In addition to McMurdo Station, numerous other research bases can be found in Antarctica. Some of the most notable include the British Antarctic Survey’s Halley Research Station, the Concordia Station (a cooperative research base between France and Italy), and Russia’s Vostok Station.

Memorials and Monuments

In addition to research bases, a number of memorials and monuments have been built in Antarctica. These structures often commemorate a particular event or person in history, such as the 1905-06 National Antarctic Expedition led by Robert Falcon Scott and Ernest Shackleton.

The Scott-Amundsen Memorial is one of the most well-known memorials in Antarctica. This monument was erected in 1912 and is located at the south pole. It serves as a symbolic marker of the first successful expedition to the south pole and is dedicated to the two captains who led their respective groups there — Robert Falcon Scott and Roald Amundsen.

The Shackleton Memorial is another popular monument located at Cape Royds, Antarctica. This monument was erected in 2009 to commemorate the life of Sir Ernest Shackleton and his heroic efforts to explore and map Antarctica.

Other monuments and memorials in Antarctica include the Early Antarctic Explorers Memorial, the Mawson’s Huts Memorial, and the Amundsen-Scott South Pole Station.

Outdoor Advertisements

Outdoor advertisements, also known as “billboards,” are another type of structure that can be found in Antarctica. Though it may seem strange to advertise in such an inhospitable environment, some companies have erected billboards in Antarctica to draw attention to their brands.

The most notable billboards in Antarctica are owned by the beverage company Coca-Cola. In 1993, the company placed a huge red-and-white sign near the South Pole. This sign reads, “Enjoy Coke!” — a message meant to promote the brand to any passing explorers.

In addition to the Coca-Cola sign, there is a Skittles billboard located near the Chilean Base Frei Montalva. This billboard was erected as part of a promotional campaign for the candy and reads, “Welcome to Skittles Land!”

Aircraft Landings, Huts, and Other Structures

The final type of structure that can be found in Antarctica is related to aerial exploration. Since few people are able to visit Antarctica, many explorers and researchers rely on aircraft to travel to and from the continent. As such, a number of airstrips, huts, and other structures related to air travel have been built in Antarctica.

The earliest airstrip in Antarctica was the Whalers’ Way Airstrip, which was established near the Norways Station in 1933. This airstrip allowed a research plane to land in Antarctica for the first time and was later used by the military and other organisations to travel to the continent.

Since the Whalers’ Way Airstrip was built, numerous other airstrips have been constructed, including the Marambio Base Airstrip and Tower, located at the wall of the Weddell Sea.

In addition to airstrips, a number of huts have been built in Antarctica for use by explorers and researchers. These huts provide shelter from the cold and serve as places for researchers to find respite from the harsh Antarctic environment. Examples of these huts include Robert Falcon Scott’s Discovery Hut, built in 1901, and Ernest Shackleton’s Base E Hut, built in 1907.

From research bases to monuments and aircraft landings, the structures in Antarctica provide a fascinating insight into how humans can survive and thrive in even the harshest environments. Though Antarctica is an inhospitable continent, these structures prove that the continent has the potential to become a place of exploration, scientific discovery, and adventure.