Chukchi Sea is a marginal sea of the Arctic Ocean. It is bounded on the west by the Long Strait, off Wrangel Island, the Bering Strait forms its southernmost limit and connects it to the Bering Sea and the Pacific Ocean. The principal port on the Chukchi Sea is Uelen in Russia, the International Date Line crosses the Chukchi Sea from northwest to southeast. It is displaced eastwards to avoid Wrangel Island as well as the Chukotka Autonomous Okrug on the Russian mainland, the sea has an approximate area of 595,000 km2 and is only navigable about four months of the year. The main geological feature of the Chukchi Sea bottom is the 700-kilometre-long Hope Basin, depths less than 50 meters occupy 56% of the total area. The Chukchi Sea has very few compared to other seas of the Arctic. Wrangel Island lies at the limit of the sea, Herald Island is located near its northern limit. The sea is named after the Chukchi people, who reside on its shores, the coastal Chukchi traditionally engaged in fishing and the hunting of walrus in this cold sea.
In Alaska, the rivers flowing into the Chukchi Sea are the Kivalina, the Kobuk, the Kokolik, the Kukpowruk, the Kukpuk, the Noatak, the Utukok, the Pitmegea, and the Wulik, among others. Of rivers flowing in from its Siberian side, the Amguyema, the International Hydrographic Organization defines the limits of the Chuckchi Sea as follows, On the West. The Eastern limit of East Siberian Sea, a line from Point Barrow, Alaska to the Northernmost point of Wrangel Island. The Arctic Circle between Siberia and Alaska, common usage is that the southern extent is further south at the narrowest part of the Bering Strait which is on the 66th parallel north. The Chukchi Sea Shelf is the westernmost part of the shelf of the United States. Within this shelf, the 50-mile Chukchi Corridor acts as a passageway for one of the largest marine mammal migrations in the world, in 1728, Vitus Bering and in 1779, Captain James Cook entered the sea from the Pacific. Since further progress for that year was impossible, the ship was secured in winter quarters, even so, members of the expedition and the crew were aware only a few miles of ice-blocked sea lay between them and the open waters.
The following year, two days after Vega was released, she passed the Bering Strait and steamed towards the Pacific Ocean. In 1913, abandoned by expedition leader Vilhjalmur Stefansson, drifted in the ice along the northern expanses of the Chukchi Sea and sank, the survivors made it to Wrangel Island, where they found themselves in a hopeless situation. Then Captain Robert Bartlett walked hundreds of kilometers with Kataktovik, an Inuit man and they reached Cape Vankarem on the Chukotka coast, on April 15,1914
Provideniya is a former Soviet military port, sited on a fjord sheltered from the Bering Sea. The largest inhabited locality east of Anadyr, it was established as a port to serve the end of the Northern Sea Route. The port is found in Komsomolskaya Bay, a part of the much larger Provideniya Bay, providing a deep water harbor for Russian ships. After discovery in 1660 of Providence Bay by the Russian expedition led by Kurbata Ivanov, the waters became a regular site for wintering fishing, whaling. In 1937, with the arrival of a convoy with building materials for the construction company Providenstroy, active construction of the port, on May 10,1946, the settlement of Provideniya was officially established by the Decree of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the Russian SFSR. The settlement continued to quickly and military units began to be deployed here. On April 25,1957, it was granted work settlement status, in 1975, it was planned to grow the settlement into a town with a population of twelve thousand and to rename it Dezhnyov.
However and economic upheavals in the period left these plans unfulfilled. Within the framework of administrative divisions, Provideniya serves as the center of Providensky District. As a municipal division, the settlement of Provideniya is incorporated within Providensky Municipal District as Provideniya Urban Settlement. There is a school, one functioning movie theater, a post office. The settlement is served by the Provideniya Bay Airport, the closest Russian airport to the United States. Provideniya is sometimes referred to as the Doorway to the Arctic, Bering Air, an Alaskan airline, offers charter services to the Provideniya Bay Airport from both Nome and Anchorage. Alaska Airlines made a Friendship Flight to Provideniya in July 1988, high-sprung transports connect the settlements concrete slabbed main street with outlying destinations along the fjord and coast. A significant proportion of the current residents are Yupik, reflecting the high percentage of indigenous peoples in both Providensky and Chukotsky Districts.
The settlement and the surrounding area struggle from alcoholism, causing a death rate, a low birth rate. Provideniya has an Arctic climate, although winters are not as severe due to the coastal location, summers are generally cool and the settlement receives heavy rainfall, especially when low pressure systems move northwards from the Pacific Ocean. An evangelical church run by the local Moldovan community and missionaries is located in Provideniya, a Russian Orthodox church operates
He learned the mercantile trade from his father and uncle, Niccolò and Maffeo, who travelled through Asia and met Kublai Khan. In 1269, they returned to Venice to meet Marco for the first time, the three of them embarked on an epic journey to Asia, returning after 24 years to find Venice at war with Genoa, Marco was imprisoned and dictated his stories to a cellmate. He was released in 1299, became a merchant, married. He died in 1324 and was buried in the church of San Lorenzo in Venice, Marco Polo was not the first European to reach China, but he was the first to leave a detailed chronicle of his experience. This book inspired Christopher Columbus and many other travellers, there is a substantial literature based on Polos writings, he influenced European cartography, leading to the introduction of the Fra Mauro map. Marco Polo was born in 1254 in Venice Republic and his exact date and place of birth are archivally unknown. Some historians mentioned that he was born on September 15 but that date is not endorsed by mainstream scholarship, Marco Polos birthplace is generally considered Venice, but varies between Constantinople, and the island of Korčula.
There is dispute as to whether the Polo family is of Venetian origin, the first recorded Polo is Venetian Domenico Polo who was mentioned in 971 regarding the prohibition of trade with the Arabs. Later other Polos were mentioned in the service of the realm, whether they were related with the family of Marco Polo is uncertain, but this could indicate that his ancestors travelled between Venice and Dalmatia. Some of the first indications of where his family originated and were resident come from Venetian documents and manuscripts. Some scholars argued that this account could go along with the note from Il Milione that his father and uncle, Niccolò and Maffeo Polo, the non-Venetian i. e. Sanuto mentioned a captain from Korčula, Antonio di Polo. Moule cited two early 17th century Venetian manuscripts questi ueneno de dalmatia, Polo questi uene de Dalmatia, scholars etymologically argued that his family name derives from Latin Paulus, the name of a certain bird species, or like Albert tSerstevens considered - from Eastern origin.
However, the habitat of the shorebird is non-existent on Korčula, the surname Polo seems related with other widespread Dalmatian surnames. The lack of evidence makes the Korčula theory as a specific birthplace strongly disputed, in 1168, his great-uncle, Marco Polo, borrowed money and commanded a ship in Constantinople. His grandfather, Andrea Polo of the parish of San Felice, had three sons, yet another Marco, and the travellers father Niccolò and this genealogy, described by Ramusio, is not universally accepted as there is no additional evidence to support it. His father, Niccolò Polo, a merchant, traded with the Near East, becoming wealthy, Niccolò and his brother Maffeo set off on a trading voyage before Marcos birth. In 1260, Niccolò and Maffeo, while residing in Constantinople, the capital of the Latin Empire, foresaw a political change, they liquidated their assets into jewels and moved away. According to The Travels of Marco Polo, they passed through much of Asia, and met with Kublai Khan and their decision to leave Constantinople proved timely
Dmitry Shparo is a Russian Arctic explorer and endurance skier. He is internationally known for reaching the North Pole on snow skis. In 1979, Shparo led the first ski expedition from Eurasia to the North Pole, in 1988, he completed a full traverse across the Arctic Ocean from Russia to Canada via the North Pole. In 1998, Shparo and his son, became the first people in times to ski across the Bering Strait. Dmitry Shparo was born in Moscow, Russia, in 1941, Shparo was the son of Igor and Nina Shparo. His father was a journalist and a writer, while his mother was a mathematician. In 1927, when Shparos mother was three years old, her father was arrested and declared an enemy of the nation. He was sent to a camp in Siberia, where he disappeared. Educational background In 1967, Shparo graduated from the Moscow State University, following graduation, he began teaching full-time at the Moscow Institute of Steel and Alloys. In 1970, Shparo traveled from Lake Taymyr, the largest freshwater body in Eurasia north of the Arctic Circle, following completion of this expedition, Shparo was recognized by the national press and news affiliates.
Newspapers published his journals and announced their sponsorship of a new polar expedition, in 1973, Shparo developed an interest in Arctic exploration. At this time, explorers were viewed with a deal of suspicion in the Soviet Union. Their routes had to be approved by the Communist Party committees, following Soviet approval, Shparo led several low-profile expeditions up the outskirts of Russia. Soviet authorities were taking the Arctic Region seriously, the Polar Ocean was a place darmes of the ongoing military competition with the US. The Kremlin wanted to see victories in battle field and not defeats. The stakes of the proposed ski-trip to the North Pole were such that the decision rested with the Politburo. Its response was laconic, the expedition to the North Pole was unsuitable, in March 1979, Shparo left to the North Pole on skis secretly, without the Politburo’s permission. In late April, when news of the flagrant disobedience finally reached the Politburo and his teammates were halfway there and Mihail Suslov, the Party’s chief ideologist, suggested that chances of their successful arrival to the Pole were quite high
The Pacific Ocean is the largest and deepest of the Earths oceanic divisions. It extends from the Arctic Ocean in the north to the Southern Ocean in the south and is bounded by Asia and Australia in the west, the Mariana Trench in the western North Pacific is the deepest point in the world, reaching a depth of 10,911 metres. Both the center of the Water Hemisphere and the Western Hemisphere are in the Pacific Ocean, the oceans current name was coined by Portuguese explorer Ferdinand Magellan during the Spanish circumnavigation of the world in 1521, as he encountered favourable winds on reaching the ocean. He called it Mar Pacífico, which in both Portuguese and Spanish means peaceful sea, important human migrations occurred in the Pacific in prehistoric times. Long-distance trade developed all along the coast from Mozambique to Japan and therefore knowledge, extended to the Indonesian islands but apparently not Australia. By at least 878 when there was a significant Islamic settlement in Canton much of trade was controlled by Arabs or Muslims.
In 219 BC Xu Fu sailed out into the Pacific searching for the elixir of immortality, from 1404 to 1433 Zheng He led expeditions into the Indian Ocean. The east side of the ocean was discovered by Spanish explorer Vasco Núñez de Balboa in 1513 after his expedition crossed the Isthmus of Panama and he named it Mar del Sur because the ocean was to the south of the coast of the isthmus where he first observed the Pacific. Later, Portuguese explorer Ferdinand Magellan sailed the Pacific East to West on a Castilian expedition of world circumnavigation starting in 1519, Magellan called the ocean Pacífico because, after sailing through the stormy seas off Cape Horn, the expedition found calm waters. The ocean was often called the Sea of Magellan in his honor until the eighteenth century, sailing around and east of the Moluccas, between 1525 and 1527, Portuguese expeditions discovered the Caroline Islands, the Aru Islands, and Papua New Guinea. In 1542–43 the Portuguese reached Japan, in 1564, five Spanish ships consisting of 379 explorers crossed the ocean from Mexico led by Miguel López de Legazpi and sailed to the Philippines and Mariana Islands.
The Manila galleons operated for two and a half centuries linking Manila and Acapulco, in one of the longest trade routes in history, Spanish expeditions discovered Tuvalu, the Marquesas, the Cook Islands, the Solomon Islands, and the Admiralty Islands in the South Pacific. In the 16th and 17th century Spain considered the Pacific Ocean a Mare clausum—a sea closed to other naval powers, as the only known entrance from the Atlantic the Strait of Magellan was at times patrolled by fleets sent to prevent entrance of non-Spanish ships. On the western end of the Pacific Ocean the Dutch threatened the Spanish Philippines, Spain sent expeditions to the Pacific Northwest reaching Vancouver Island in southern Canada, and Alaska. The French explored and settled Polynesia, and the British made three voyages with James Cook to the South Pacific and Australia and the North American Pacific Northwest, one of the earliest voyages of scientific exploration was organized by Spain in the Malaspina Expedition of 1789–1794.
It sailed vast areas of the Pacific, from Cape Horn to Alaska and the Philippines, New Zealand and the South Pacific. Growing imperialism during the 19th century resulted in the occupation of much of Oceania by other European powers, and later, Japan, in Oceania, France got a leading position as imperial power after making Tahiti and New Caledonia protectorates in 1842 and 1853 respectively. After navy visits to Easter Island in 1875 and 1887, Chilean navy officer Policarpo Toro managed to negotiate an incorporation of the island into Chile with native Rapanui in 1888, by occupying Easter Island, Chile joined the imperial nations
Little Diomede Island
Little Diomede Island (Inupiat, Iŋaliq, formerly known as Krusenstern Island is an island of Alaska, United States. It is the smaller of the two Diomede Islands located in the middle of the Bering Strait between the Alaska mainland and Siberia. Little Diomedes neighboring island, Big Diomede, is less than 2.4 miles to the west, unlike its larger Russian neighbor, Little Diomede retains a permanent native population. As of the 2010 census, Little Diomede had a population of 110, the entirety of the island is in the City of Diomede. The island is not part of any organized borough, so services are provided directly by the state. For census purposes, it is included in the Nome Census Area, during the Cold War, the section of the border between the USA and the USSR separating Big and Little Diomede became known as the Ice Curtain. In 1987, Lynne Cox swam from Little Diomede to Big Diomede and was congratulated jointly by Mikhail Gorbachev and Ronald Reagan. Little Diomede was featured in the first episode of Full Circle with Michael Palin, according to the United States Census Bureau, the island has a total area of 2.8 square miles, all of it land.
On the western shore of the island is the village of Diomede, Little Diomede Island is located about 25 kilometers west from the mainland, in the middle of the Bering Strait. It is only 0.6 kilometers from the International Date Line, the highest point on Little Diomede Island is 494 meters. There is a heliport, the Diomede Heliport, with helicopter flights. During the winter, the villagers carve a runway into the ice sheet so that bush planes can deliver vital products. Due to annual variations of the ice sheet, the runway changes position every year, summer temperatures average 40 to 50 °F. Winter temperatures average from 10 to 6 °F Annual precipitation averages 10 inches, during summer months, cloudy skies and fog prevail. Winds blow consistently from the north, averaging 15 knots, with gusts of 60 to 80 miles per hour, the Bering Strait is generally frozen between mid-December and mid-June. The Little Diomede island is composed of Cretaceous age granite or quartz monzonite, the location of the city is the only area which does not have near-vertical cliffs to the water.
Behind the city and around the entire island rocky slopes rise at about 40° up to the relatively flattened top in 1, the island has very scant vegetation. List of islands of Alaska List of islands of the United States Diomede Community Page Census 2000 information Diomede School You CAN see Russia from here
Alaska is a U. S. state located in the northwest extremity of North America. To the north are the Chukchi and Beaufort seas–the southern parts of the Arctic Ocean, the Pacific Ocean lies to the south and southwest. Alaska is the largest state in the United States by area, the 3rd least populous, approximately half of Alaskas residents live within the Anchorage metropolitan area. Alaskas economy is dominated by the fishing, natural gas, military bases and tourism are a significant part of the economy. The United States purchased Alaska from the Russian Empire on March 30,1867, the area went through several administrative changes before becoming organized as a territory on May 11,1912. It was admitted as the 49th state of the U. S. on January 3,1959, the name Alaska was introduced in the Russian colonial period when it was used to refer to the peninsula. It was derived from an Aleut, or Unangam idiom, which refers to the mainland of Alaska. Literally, it means object to which the action of the sea is directed, Alaska is the northernmost and westernmost state in the United States and has the most easterly longitude in the United States because the Aleutian Islands extend into the Eastern Hemisphere.
Alaska is the only non-contiguous U. S. state on continental North America and it is technically part of the continental U. S. but is sometimes not included in colloquial use, Alaska is not part of the contiguous U. S. often called the Lower 48. The capital city, Juneau, is situated on the mainland of the North American continent but is not connected by road to the rest of the North American highway system. Alaskas territorial waters touch Russias territorial waters in the Bering Strait, as the Russian Big Diomede Island, Alaska has a longer coastline than all the other U. S. states combined. Alaska is the largest state in the United States by total area at 663,268 square miles, over twice the size of Texas, Alaska is larger than all but 18 sovereign countries. Counting territorial waters, Alaska is larger than the area of the next three largest states, Texas and Montana. It is larger than the area of the 22 smallest U. S. states. Also referred to as the Panhandle or Inside Passage, this is the region of Alaska closest to the rest of the United States, as such, this was where most of the initial non-indigenous settlement occurred in the years following the Alaska Purchase.
The region is dominated by the Alexander Archipelago as well as the Tongass National Forest and it contains the state capital Juneau, the former capital Sitka, and Ketchikan, at one time Alaskas largest city. The Alaska Marine Highway provides a vital transportation link throughout the area. The Interior is the largest region of Alaska, much of it is uninhabited wilderness, Fairbanks is the only large city in the region
Land Rover Defender
The Land Rover Defender is a British four-wheel-drive off-road utility vehicle developed from the original Land Rover Series launched in June 1948. In October 2013 Land Rover announced that production would end in December 2015 after a run of 67 years. Production finally ended on 29 January 2016 when the last Defender, H166 HUE, Jaguar Land Rover announced their intention to launch a replacement new Defender, which motoring journalists speculate will be quite different from the original version. The model was introduced in 1983 as Land Rover One Ten, the Ninety and One Ten replaced the earlier Land Rover Series, and at the time of launch, the only other Land Rover model in production was the Range Rover. In 1989, a model was brought out by Land Rover to be produced in parallel with the other two, the Land Rover Discovery. To avoid possible confusion, from 1991 the Ninety and the One Ten were renamed the Defender 90 and these carried front badges that said Defender, with a badge on the rear of the vehicle saying Defender 90 or Defender 110.
The most recent model, from 2007-2016, still featured the space above the radiator for the badge but was blank, instead had Land Rover spelled across the leading edge of the bonnet in raised individual letters, in keeping with the Discovery and Freelander. At the rear was a new style of Defender badge with an underlining swoosh, on these last models there are no badges defining the wheelbase model of the vehicle. The 127-inch wheelbase Land Rover 127, available from 1985, was marketed with the name rendered numerically. Following the adoption of the Defender name, it became the Defender 130, production of the model now known as the Defender began in 1983 as the Land Rover 110, a name which reflected the 110-inch length of the wheelbase. The Land Rover 90, with 93-inch wheelbase, and Land Rover 127, with 127-inch wheelbase, there is little to distinguish the post-1983 vehicles from the Series III Land Rover. A full-length bonnet, revised grille, plus the fitting of wheel arch extensions to cover wider-track axles are the most noticeable changes, initially the Land Rover was available with a part-time 4WD system familiar to all derivatives produced since 1949.
The part-time system failed to sell and was dropped from the options list by 1984. From 1984, wind-up windows were fitted, and a 2. 5-litre,68 horsepower diesel engine was introduced and this was based on the earlier 2. 3-litre engine, but had a more modern fuel-injection system as well as increased capacity. A low compression version of the 3. 5-litre V8 Range Rover engine transformed performance and it was initially available in the 110 with a four-speed transmission with integral transfer case, later in conjunction with a high strength Santana five-speed transmission. This period saw Land Rover market the utility Land Rover as a recreational vehicle. While the basic pick-up, 4x4 and van versions were still working vehicles, the switch from leaf spring to coil spring suspension was a key part of the new models success. It offered improved off-road ability, load capacity, from 1983, Land Rover introduced a third wheelbase to its utility line-up, a 127-inch wheelbase vehicle designed to accommodate larger, heavier loads than the 110
Chukotka Autonomous Okrug
Chukotka Autonomous Okrug or Chukotka is a federal subject of Russia in the Russian Far East. The population was recorded at 50,526 in the 2010 Census, the autonomous okrugs surface area is 737,700 square kilometers. The principal town and the center is Anadyr. The region is the most northeasterly region of Russia and, since the sale of Alaska to the United States, has been the part of Russia lying partially in the Western Hemisphere. Elgygytgyn Lake, a crater lake, is located in Chukotka, as is the village of Uelen. The Chukchi Peninsula projects eastward forming the Bering Strait between Russia and Alaska, and encloses the north side of the Gulf of Anadyr, the peninsulas easternmost point, Cape Dezhnev, is the easternmost point of mainland Russia. Ecologically, Chukotka can be divided into three areas, the northern Arctic desert, the central tundra, and the taiga in the south. About half of its area is above the Arctic Circle and this area is very mountainous, containing the Chukotsky Mountains and the Anadyr Range.
Chukotkas rivers spring from its northern and central mountains, the major rivers are, Anadyr River, with tributaries Belaya and Velikaya Rivers, flowing east to the Gulf of Anadyr. Omolon and the Great and Little Anyuy Rivers that flow west into the Kolyma River in Yakutia, Chaun, Pegtymel and Amguyema Rivers that flow north into the arctic seas. The largest lakes are Lake Krasnoye, west of Anadyr, large parts of Chukotka are covered with moss and arctic plants, similar to western Alaska. Surrounding the Gulf of Anadyr and in the river valleys grow small larch, birch, more than 900 species of plants grow in Chukotka, including 400 species of moss and lichen. It is home to 220 bird species and 30 fresh water fish species, chukotkas climate is influenced by its location on the three neighboring seas, the Bering Sea, the East Siberian Sea, and the Chukchi Sea. The weather is characterized by cold winds that can quickly change to wet southern winds. Cape Navarin has the highest number of hurricanes and storms in Russia, the coastal areas are windy with little precipitation, between 200 and 400 mm per year.
Temperature varies from −15 °C to −35 °C in January and from +5 °C to +14 °C in July, growing season is short, only 80 to 100 days per year. The first inhabitants were Paleo-Siberian hunters who came to Chukotka from Central, the area was part of the Beringia land bridge that is believed to have enabled human migration to the Americas. Traditionally Chukotka was the home of the native Chukchi people, Siberian Yupiks, Chuvans, Evens/Lamuts and Russian Old Settlers
Vitus Jonassen Bering, known as Ivan Ivanovich Bering, was a Danish cartographer and explorer in Russian service, and an officer in the Russian Navy. The Bering Strait, the Bering Sea, Bering Island, the Bering Glacier, taking to the seas at the age of 18, Bering travelled extensively over the next eight years, as well as taking naval training at Amsterdam. In 1704, he enrolled with the rapidly expanding Russian navy of Tsar Peter I, Bering was permitted to keep the rank as he rejoined the Russian navy the same year. Bering departed from St. Petersburg in February 1725 as the head of a 34-man expedition, aided by the expertise of Lieutenants Martin Spangberg, the party took on men as it headed towards Okhotsk, encountering many difficulties before arriving at the settlement. From there, the men sailed to the Kamchatka peninsula, preparing new ships there, in August 1728, Bering decided that they had sufficient evidence that there was clear sea between Asia and America, which he did not sight during the trip.
For the first expedition, Bering was rewarded with money, and he immediately started preparations for a second trip. Having returned to Okhotsk with a larger, better prepared. While doing so, the expedition spotted Mount Saint Elias, a storm separated the ships, but Bering sighted the southern coast of Alaska, and a landing was made at Kayak Island or in the vicinity. Adverse conditions forced Bering to return, but he documented some of the Aleutian Islands on his way back, one of the sailors died and was buried on one of these islands, and Bering named the island group Shumagin Islands after him. Bering himself became too ill to command his ship, which was at last driven to refuge on an uninhabited island in the Commander Islands group in the southwest Bering Sea. On 19 December 1741 Vitus Bering died on the island, which was given the name Bering Island after him, near the Kamchatka Peninsula, reportedly from scurvy, along with 28 men of his company. Vitus Bering was born in the town of Horsens in Denmark to Anne Pedderdatter and her husband Jonas Svendsen.
He was named after a maternal great-uncle, Vitus Pedersen Bering, who had been a chronicler in the royal court, the family enjoyed reasonable financial security, with two of Vitus elder half-brothers both attending the University of Copenhagen. Vitus, did not, and instead signed on at age 15 as a ships boy, between 1696 and 1704, Bering travelled the seas, reaching India and the Dutch East Indies, whilst finding time to complete naval officer training in Amsterdam. He would later to have served on Danish whalers in the North Atlantic, visiting European colonies in the Caribbean. It was in Amsterdam, that in 1704 and under the guidance of Norwegian-born Russian admiral Cornelius Cruys, Bering enlisted with the Russian navy and he would be repeatedly promoted in Peter the Greats rapidly evolving navy, reaching the rank of second captain by 1720. His work in the stages of the Great Northern War. On 8 October 1713, Bering married Anna Christina Pülse, the took place in the Lutheran church at Vyborg
Russia, officially the Russian Federation, is a country in Eurasia. The European western part of the country is more populated and urbanised than the eastern. Russias capital Moscow is one of the largest cities in the world, other urban centers include Saint Petersburg, Yekaterinburg, Nizhny Novgorod. Extending across the entirety of Northern Asia and much of Eastern Europe, Russia spans eleven time zones and incorporates a range of environments. It shares maritime borders with Japan by the Sea of Okhotsk, the East Slavs emerged as a recognizable group in Europe between the 3rd and 8th centuries AD. Founded and ruled by a Varangian warrior elite and their descendants, in 988 it adopted Orthodox Christianity from the Byzantine Empire, beginning the synthesis of Byzantine and Slavic cultures that defined Russian culture for the next millennium. Rus ultimately disintegrated into a number of states, most of the Rus lands were overrun by the Mongol invasion. The Soviet Union played a role in the Allied victory in World War II.
The Soviet era saw some of the most significant technological achievements of the 20th century, including the worlds first human-made satellite and the launching of the first humans in space. By the end of 1990, the Soviet Union had the second largest economy, largest standing military in the world. It is governed as a federal semi-presidential republic, the Russian economy ranks as the twelfth largest by nominal GDP and sixth largest by purchasing power parity in 2015. Russias extensive mineral and energy resources are the largest such reserves in the world, making it one of the producers of oil. The country is one of the five recognized nuclear weapons states and possesses the largest stockpile of weapons of mass destruction, Russia is a great power as well as a regional power and has been characterised as a potential superpower. The name Russia is derived from Rus, a state populated mostly by the East Slavs. However, this name became more prominent in the history, and the country typically was called by its inhabitants Русская Земля.
In order to distinguish this state from other states derived from it, it is denoted as Kievan Rus by modern historiography, an old Latin version of the name Rus was Ruthenia, mostly applied to the western and southern regions of Rus that were adjacent to Catholic Europe. The current name of the country, Россия, comes from the Byzantine Greek designation of the Kievan Rus, the standard way to refer to citizens of Russia is Russians in English and rossiyane in Russian. There are two Russian words which are translated into English as Russians