Geography of Antarctica – The Ultimate Free Guide 2021

Antarctic is Earth’s southernmost continent. It contains the geographic South Pole and 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 and nearly twice the size of Australia. It is by far the least populated continent, About 98% of Antarctica is covered by ice that averages 1.9 km (1.2 mi; 6,200 ft) in thickness.

  • Antarctica is a continent, surrounded by an ocean, which freezes with sea ice. This is different to the Arctic, which is entirely ocean, covered in sea ice, and surrounded by continents.
  • Antarctica, on average, is the coldest, driest, and windiest continent, and has the highest average elevation of all the continents. Antarctica was the last region on Earth to be discovered, unseen until 1820 when the Russian expedition of Fabian Gottlieb von Bellingshausen and Mikhail Lazarev on Vostok and Mirny sighted the Fimbul ice shelf. The continent remained largely neglected for the rest of the 19th century because of its harsh environment, lack of easily accessible resources, and isolation.
  • The geography of Antarctica is dominated by its south polar location and, thus, by ice. The Antarctic continent, located in the Earth’s southern hemisphere, is centered asymmetrically around the South Pole and largely south of the Antarctic Circle.

Geography of Antarctica


The Above figure shows the Map of Antarctica with country max claim details.

  • Antarctica is divided in two by Trans antarctic Mountains close to the neck between the Ross Sea and the Weddell Sea.
  • Western Antarctica and Eastern Antarctica correspond roughly to the eastern and western hemispheres relative to the Greenwich meridian.
  • Antarctica is the 5th largest continent on Earth with up to 98% of it being covered with thick ice and snow.

Continent:

Antarctica

Coordinates:

80°S 90°E

Area:

2nd Officially

Total:

14,000,000 km2

Land:

98%

Water:

2%

Borders:

No Land Bondaries

Highest Point:

Vinson Massif, 4,897 m

Lowest Point:

Bentley Subglacial Trench, −2,555 m

Longest River:

Onyx River, 32 km

Largest Lake:

Lake Vostok, 26,000 sq m (est.)

Terrain:

Ice and barren rock

Natural Resources:

  • Krill,
  • Fin fish,
  • Crab

Natural hazards:

  • High winds,
  • Blizzards,
  • Cyclonic storms, V
  • Volcanism

Environmental issues:

Depleting ozone layer, Rising sea level

Climate:

Antarctica is the coldest continent on Earth. The average temperature in the interior throughout the year is about -57°C, with the minimum temperature being -90°C during the winter season. Although the coast is warmer and temperatures can reach a maximum of between -2°C and 8°C during the summer.

Seas:

  • Scotia Sea
  • Weddell Sea
  • Bellingshausen Sea
  • Amundsen Sea 

Ice shelves:

  • Filchner-Ronne Ice Shelf
  • Larsen Ice Shelf
  • Abbot Ice Shelf
  • Getz Ice Shelf
  • Sulzberger Ice Shelf
  • Ross Ice Shelf

Countries in Antarctica:

  • Argentina,
  • Australia,
  • Belgium,
  • Chile,
  • France,
  • Japan,
  • New Zealand,
  • Norway,
  • South Africa,
  • The Soviet Union,
  • The United Kingdom, and
  • The United States

Volcanoes:

  • Volcanoes that occur underneath glacial ice sheets are known by the term “Glaciovolcanism“, or subglacial volcanoes.

West Antarctica:

West Antarctica is the smaller part of the continent, (50° – 180°W), divided into:

  • Areas,
  • Seas,
  • Ice Shelvs,
  • Islands.

East Antarctica:

East Antarctica is the larger part of the continent, (50°W – 180°E), both the South Magnetic Pole and geographic South Pole are situated here. Divided into:

  • Areas,
  • Seas,
  • Ice Shelvs,
  • Islands.

Detailed Map of Antarctica:

Geography of Antarctica - The Ultimate Free Guide 2021
Fig:ontheworldmap.com

Physical Map of Antarctica:

Antarctica as a Continent:

  • Antarctica is a continent with bedrock under the thick ice sheet.

Also Read: World Map,

References:

UPSC Overflow
 

Click Here to Leave a Comment Below 0 comments