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Old 13-04-2012, 11:33 PM   #313
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Lightbulb Princess Elisabeth Base

Princess Elisabeth Antarctica, located on Utsteinen Nunatak in Dronning Maud Land (71.57°S 23.20°E) is a Belgian scientific polar research station, which went into service on February 15, 2009. The station, designed, built and operated by the International Polar Foundation, is the first polar base that combines eco-friendly construction materials, clean and efficient energy use, optimization of the station's energy consumption and clever waste management techniques. The station is built against a ridge (The Utsteinen ridge) that is exposed to gales of up to 300 km/h. The station can withstand such strong winds through its aerodynamic shape and its foundation anchoring of several meters deep into the permafrost.

The upper deck of the building is the actual station and looks over the ridge edge. The lower deck contains a garage for snowcat vehicles and other utilities. The Princess Elisabeth base is the only zero emission base on the Antarctic, and runs entirely on solar and wind energy through the use of a micro smartgrid grid.The station is connected to nine wind turbines that stretch out along the Utsteinen ridge. It will house up to 16 scientists at a time.

Satellite view of Antarctica with location of research bases (red dots). A large majority of them are along the coast line. The location of Princess Elisabeth base is indicated by the large yellow dot. The base is located in the vicinity of the Sør Rondane Mountains in the Queen Maud Land, about 4000 km south of South-Africa and 200 km inland (lat=71°57’S, long=23°20’E, elev=1370m)...The station is named after Princess Elisabeth of Belgium, granddaughter of Albert II of Belgium and daughter of Prince Philippe, Duke of Brabant.

King Albert II with Queen Paola, and other royals and Heads of state, at the funeral of Pope John Paul II.

The House of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha (orig. Haus Sachsen-Coburg und Gotha) is a German dynasty, the senior line of the Saxon House of Wettin that ruled the Ernestine duchies, including the duchy of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha.

Founded by Ernest Anton, the sixth duke of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld, it is also the royal house of several European monarchies, and branches currently reign in Belgium through the descendants of Leopold I, and in the Commonwealth realms through the descendants of Prince Albert. Due to anti-German sentiment in the United Kingdom during World War I, George V of the United Kingdom changed the name of his branch from Saxe-Coburg and Gotha to Windsor in 1917. The same happened in Belgium where it was changed to "van België" (Dutch) or "de Belgique" (French).

The Norwegian name, Dronning Maud Land, is also used by English speakers. This derives from a 1974 agreement between Norway and the United Kingdom, in which it was agreed to not translate the place names in each other's respective claims. Informal corresponding agreements is also in effect with Australia, New Zealand and France

The Showa Station is Japan's main research station in Antarctica. A vast array of research is conducted there, including upper atmosphere physics, meteorology, seismology, gravimetry, geodesy/mapping, oceanography, glaciology, geology, marine and terrestrial biology, and medical research. Japan's other station, Dome Fuji Station was opened as part of a major ice-coring project. It mainly studies climate change, and conducts deep drilling and atmospheric observations

The Maitri station succeeded the Dakshin Gangotri station in 1989, India's first Antarctic base. Maitri's research focus on geology, and the study of the supercontinent Gondwana, when India and Antarctica belonged to the same landmass. It also includes low-temperature engineering research that is relevant to conditions in the Himalayas.

Last edited by lightgiver; 14-04-2012 at 01:33 AM.
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