Richard E. Byrd
Rear Admiral Richard Evelyn Byrd Jr. was an American naval officer and explorer. He was a recipient of the Medal of Honor, the highest honor for valor given by the United States, was a pioneering American aviator, polar explorer, organizer of polar logistics. Aircraft flights in which he served as a navigator and expedition leader crossed the Atlantic Ocean, a segment of the Arctic Ocean, a segment of the Antarctic Plateau. Byrd claimed that his expeditions had been the first to reach both the North Pole and the South Pole by air. However, his claim to have reached the North Pole is disputed. Byrd was born in Winchester, the son of Esther Bolling and Richard Evelyn Byrd Sr, he was a descendant of one of the First Families of Virginia. His ancestors include planter John Rolfe and his wife Pocahontas, William Byrd II of Westover Plantation, who established Richmond, Robert "King" Carter, a colonial governor, he was the brother of Virginia Governor and U. S. Senator Harry F. Byrd, a dominant figure in the Virginia Democratic Party from the 1920s until the 1960s.
On January 20, 1915, Richard married Marie Donaldson Ames. He would name a region of Antarctic land he discovered "Marie Byrd Land" after her, they had four children – Richard Evelyn Byrd III, Evelyn Bolling Byrd Clarke, Katharine Agnes Byrd Breyer, Helen Byrd Stabler. By late 1924, the Byrd family moved into a large brownstone house at 9 Brimmer Street in Boston's fashionable Beacon Hill neighborhood, purchased by Marie's father, a wealthy industrialist. On June 8, 1912, Byrd graduated from the Naval Academy and was commissioned an ensign in the United States Navy. On July 14, 1912, he was assigned to the battleship USS Wyoming. During service in the Caribbean Sea, Byrd received his first letter of commendation, a Silver Lifesaving Medal, for twice plunging clothed to the rescue of a sailor who had fallen overboard. In 1914 he was assigned to the gunboat USS Dolphin, which served as the yacht of the Secretary of the Navy; this assignment brought Byrd into contact with high ranking officials and dignitaries including Assistant Secretary of the Navy Franklin Roosevelt.
During Byrd's assignment to Dolphin she was commanded by future Fleet Admiral William D. Leahy, who served as Chief of Naval Operations during World War II. On March 15, 1916, Byrd was medically retired for a foot injury, he was promoted to the rank of lieutenant and assigned as the Inspector and Instructor for the Rhode Island Naval Militia in Providence, Rhode Island. On December 14, 1916, he was commissioned as a commander in the Rhode Island Naval Militia. In this position he was commended by Brigadier General Charles W. Abbot, the Adjutant General of Rhode Island, with making great strides in improving the efficiency of the Rhode Island Naval Militia. On April 25, 1928, by act of the Rhode Island General Assembly, he was promoted to captain in the Rhode Island Naval Militia in recognition of his flight to the North Pole in 1926. Shortly after the entry of the United States into the First World War in April 1917, Byrd was recalled to active duty and was assigned to the Office of Naval Operations and served as secretary and organizer of the Navy Department Commission on Training Camps and trained men in aviation at the aviation ground school in Pensacola, Florida.
He qualified as a Naval Aviator in June 1918. He commanded naval air forces at Naval Air Station Halifax in Nova Scotia, Canada from July 1918 until the armistice in November. In that assignment he was promoted to the permanent rank of lieutenant and the temporary rank of lieutenant commander. For his services during the war, he received a letter of commendation from Secretary of the Navy Josephus Daniels, converted to a Navy Commendation Medal. After the war, Byrd's expertise in aerial navigation resulted in his appointment to plan the flight path for the U. S. Navy's 1919 transatlantic crossing. Of the three flying boats that attempted it, only Lieutenant Commander Albert Read's NC-4 aircraft completed the trip, becoming the first transatlantic flight. During the summer of 1923 Lieutenant Byrd, with the assistance of a group of volunteer Navy veterans of the First World War, helped found the Naval Reserve Air Station at Squantum Point near Boston, using an unused First World War seaplane hangar, which had remained more-or-less intact after the Victory Destroyer Plant shipyard was built on the site.
NRAS Squantum was commissioned on August 15, 1923, is considered to have been the first air base in the Naval Reserve program. Byrd commanded the aviation unit of the arctic expedition to North Greenland led by Donald B. MacMillan from June to October 1925. On May 9, 1926, Byrd and Navy Chief Aviation Pilot Floyd Bennett attempted a flight over the North Pole in a Fokker F. VIIa/3m Tri-motor monoplane named Josephine Ford, after the daughter of Ford Motor Company president Edsel Ford, who helped finance the expedition; the flight went from Spitsbergen and back to its take-off airfield, lasting fifteen hours and fifty-seven minutes. Byrd and Bennett claimed to have reached a distance of 1,535 miles; when he returned to the United States from the Arctic, Byrd became a national hero. Congress passed a special act on December 21, 1926, promoting him to the rank of commander and awarding both him and Floyd Bennett the Medal of Honor. Bennett was promoted to the warrant officer rank of Machinist. Byrd and Bennett were presented with Tiffany Cross versions of the Medal of Honor on March 5, 1927 at the White House b
A mountain is a large landform that rises above the surrounding land in a limited area in the form of a peak. A mountain is steeper than a hill. Mountains are formed through tectonic forces or volcanism; these forces can locally raise the surface of the earth. Mountains erode through the action of rivers, weather conditions, glaciers. A few mountains are isolated summits. High elevations on mountains produce colder climates than at sea level; these colder climates affect the ecosystems of mountains: different elevations have different plants and animals. Because of the less hospitable terrain and climate, mountains tend to be used less for agriculture and more for resource extraction and recreation, such as mountain climbing; the highest mountain on Earth is Mount Everest in the Himalayas of Asia, whose summit is 8,850 m above mean sea level. The highest known mountain on any planet in the Solar System is Olympus Mons on Mars at 21,171 m. There is no universally accepted definition of a mountain.
Elevation, relief, steepness and continuity have been used as criteria for defining a mountain. In the Oxford English Dictionary a mountain is defined as "a natural elevation of the earth surface rising more or less abruptly from the surrounding level and attaining an altitude which to the adjacent elevation, is impressive or notable."Whether a landform is called a mountain may depend on local usage. Mount Scott outside Lawton, Oklahoma, USA, is only 251 m from its base to its highest point. Whittow's Dictionary of Physical Geography states "Some authorities regard eminences above 600 metres as mountains, those below being referred to as hills." In the United Kingdom and the Republic of Ireland, a mountain is defined as any summit at least 2,000 feet high, whilst the official UK government's definition of a mountain, for the purposes of access, is a summit of 600 metres or higher. In addition, some definitions include a topographical prominence requirement 100 or 500 feet. At one time the U.
S. Board on Geographic Names defined a mountain as being 1,000 feet or taller, but has abandoned the definition since the 1970s. Any similar landform lower. However, the United States Geological Survey concludes that these terms do not have technical definitions in the US; the UN Environmental Programme's definition of "mountainous environment" includes any of the following: Elevation of at least 2,500 m. Using these definitions, mountains cover 33% of Eurasia, 19% of South America, 24% of North America, 14% of Africa; as a whole, 24% of the Earth's land mass is mountainous. There are three main types of mountains: volcanic and block. All three types are formed from plate tectonics: when portions of the Earth's crust move and dive. Compressional forces, isostatic uplift and intrusion of igneous matter forces surface rock upward, creating a landform higher than the surrounding features; the height of the feature makes it either a hill or, if steeper, a mountain. Major mountains tend to occur in long linear arcs, indicating tectonic plate boundaries and activity.
Volcanoes are formed when a plate is pushed at a mid-ocean ridge or hotspot. At a depth of around 100 km, melting occurs in rock above the slab, forms magma that reaches the surface; when the magma reaches the surface, it builds a volcanic mountain, such as a shield volcano or a stratovolcano. Examples of volcanoes include Mount Pinatubo in the Philippines; the magma does not have to reach the surface in order to create a mountain: magma that solidifies below ground can still form dome mountains, such as Navajo Mountain in the US. Fold mountains occur when two plates collide: shortening occurs along thrust faults and the crust is overthickened. Since the less dense continental crust "floats" on the denser mantle rocks beneath, the weight of any crustal material forced upward to form hills, plateaus or mountains must be balanced by the buoyancy force of a much greater volume forced downward into the mantle, thus the continental crust is much thicker under mountains, compared to lower lying areas.
Rock can fold either asymmetrically. The upfolds are anticlines and the downfolds are synclines: in asymmetric folding there may be recumbent and overturned folds; the Balkan Mountains and the Jura Mountains are examples of fold mountains. Block mountains are caused by faults in the crust: a plane; when rocks on one side of a fault rise relative to the other, it can form a mountain. The uplifted blocks are block horsts; the intervening dropped blocks are termed graben: these can be small or form extensive rift valley systems. This form of landscape can be seen in East Africa, the Vosges, the Basin and Range Province of Western North America and the Rhine valley; these areas occur when the regional stress is extensional and the crust is thinned. During and following uplift, mountains are subjected to the agents of erosion which wear the uplifted area down. Erosion causes the surface of mountains to be younger than the rocks that form the mountains themselves. Glacial processes produce characteristic landforms, such as pyramidal peaks, knife-edge arêtes, bowl-shaped cirques that can contai
United States Geological Survey
The United States Geological Survey is a scientific agency of the United States government. The scientists of the USGS study the landscape of the United States, its natural resources, the natural hazards that threaten it; the organization has four major science disciplines, concerning biology, geography and hydrology. The USGS is a fact-finding research organization with no regulatory responsibility; the USGS is a bureau of the United States Department of the Interior. The USGS employs 8,670 people and is headquartered in Reston, Virginia; the USGS has major offices near Lakewood, Colorado, at the Denver Federal Center, Menlo Park, California. The current motto of the USGS, in use since August 1997, is "science for a changing world." The agency's previous slogan, adopted on the occasion of its hundredth anniversary, was "Earth Science in the Public Service." Since 2012, the USGS science focus is directed at six topical "Mission Areas", namely Climate and Land Use Change, Core Science Systems, Ecosystems and Minerals and Environmental Health, Natural Hazards, Water.
In December 2012, the USGS split the Energy and Minerals and Environmental Health Mission Area resulting in seven topical Mission Areas, with the two new areas being: Energy and Minerals and Environmental Health. Administratively, it is divided into six Regional Units. Other specific programs include: Earthquake Hazards Program monitors earthquake activity worldwide; the National Earthquake Information Center in Golden, Colorado on the campus of the Colorado School of Mines detects the location and magnitude of global earthquakes. The USGS runs or supports several regional monitoring networks in the United States under the umbrella of the Advanced National Seismic System; the USGS informs authorities, emergency responders, the media, the public, both domestic and worldwide, about significant earthquakes. It maintains long-term archives of earthquake data for scientific and engineering research, it conducts and supports research on long-term seismic hazards. USGS has released the UCERF California earthquake forecast.
As of 2005, the agency is working to create a National Volcano Early Warning System by improving the instrumentation monitoring the 169 volcanoes in U. S. territory and by establishing methods for measuring the relative threats posed at each site. The USGS National Geomagnetism Program monitors the magnetic field at magnetic observatories and distributes magnetometer data in real time; the USGS collaborates with Canadian and Mexican government scientists, along with the Commission for Environmental Cooperation, to produce the North American Environmental Atlas, used to depict and track environmental issues for a continental perspective. The USGS operates the streamgaging network for the United States, with over 7400 streamgages. Real-time streamflow data are available online. National Climate Change and Wildlife Science Center implements partner-driven science to improve understanding of past and present land use change, develops relevant climate and land use forecasts, identifies lands and communities that are most vulnerable to adverse impacts of change from the local to global scale.
Since 1962, the Astrogeology Research Program has been involved in global and planetary exploration and mapping. In collaboration with Stanford University, the USGS operates the USGS-Stanford Ion Microprobe Laboratory, a world-class analytical facility for U--Pb geochronology and trace element analyses of minerals and other earth materials. USGS operates a number of water related programs, notably the National Streamflow Information Program and National Water-Quality Assessment Program. USGS Water data is publicly available from their National Water Information System database; the USGS operates the National Wildlife Health Center, whose mission is "to serve the nation and its natural resources by providing sound science and technical support, to disseminate information to promote science-based decisions affecting wildlife and ecosystem health. The NWHC provides information, technical assistance, research and leadership on national and international wildlife health issues." It is the agency responsible for surveillance of H5N1 avian influenza outbreaks in the United States.
The USGS runs 17 biological research centers in the United States, including the Patuxent Wildlife Research Center. The USGS is investigating collaboration with the social networking site Twitter to allow for more rapid construction of ShakeMaps; the USGS produces several national series of topographic maps which vary in scale and extent, with some wide gaps in coverage, notably the complete absence of 1:50,000 scale topographic maps or their equivalent. The largest and best-known topographic series is the 7.5-minute, 1:24,000 scale, quadrangle, a non-metric scale unique to the United States. Each of these maps covers an area bounded by two lines of latitude and two lines of longitude spaced 7.5 minutes apart. Nearly 57,000 individual maps in this series cover the 48 contiguous states, Hawaii, U. S. territories, areas of Alaska near Anchorage and Prudhoe Bay. The area covered by each map varies with the latitude of its represented location due to convergence of the meridians. At lower latitudes, near 30° north, a 7.5-minute quadrangle contains an area of about 64 square miles.
At 49° north latitude, 49 square miles are contained within a quadrangle of that size. As a unique non-metric map scale, the 1:24,000 scale requires a separate and specialized romer scale for pl
National Geographic Society
The National Geographic Society, headquartered in Washington, D. C. United States, is one of the largest non-profit scientific and educational organizations in the world. Founded in 1888, its interests include geography and natural science, the promotion of environmental and historical conservation, the study of world culture and history; the National Geographic Society's logo is a yellow portrait frame—rectangular in shape—which appears on the margins surrounding the front covers of its magazines and as its television channel logo. In partnership with The Walt Disney Company, the Society operates the magazine, TV channels, a website, worldwide events, other media operations; the National Geographic Society was founded in 1888 "to increase and diffuse geographic knowledge". It is governed by a board of trustees, whose 21 members include distinguished educators, business executives, former government officials and conservationists; the organization funds scientific research and exploration. National Geographic maintains a museum for the public in its Washington, D.
C. headquarters. It has helped to sponsor popular traveling exhibits, such as the early 2010s King Tut exhibit featuring artifacts from the tomb of the young Egyptian Pharaoh, its Education Foundation gives grants to education organizations and individuals to improve geography education. Its Committee for Research and Exploration has awarded more than 11,000 grants for scientific research and exploration. National Geographic has retail stores in Washington, D. C. London and Panama; the locations outside of the United States are operated by Worldwide Retail Store S. L. A Spanish holding company; the Society's media arm is National Geographic Partners, a joint venture between Walt Disney Television and the Society, which publishes a journal, National Geographic in English, nearly 40 local-language editions. It publishes other magazines, school products and Web and film products in numerous languages and countries. National Geographic's various media properties reach more than 280 million people monthly.
The National Geographic Society began as a club for an elite group of academics and wealthy patrons interested in travel and exploration. On January 13, 1888, 33 explorers and scientists gathered at the Cosmos Club, a private club located on Lafayette Square in Washington, D. C. to organize "a society for the increase and diffusion of geographical knowledge." After preparing a constitution and a plan of organization, the National Geographic Society was incorporated two weeks on January 27. Gardiner Greene Hubbard became its first president and his son-in-law, Alexander Graham Bell, succeeded him in 1897. In 1899, Bell's son-in-law Gilbert Hovey Grosvenor was named the first full-time editor of National Geographic magazine and served the organization for fifty-five years, members of the Grosvenor family have played important roles in the organization since. Bell and Gilbert Hovey Grosvenor devised the successful marketing notion of Society membership and the first major use of photographs to tell stories in magazines.
The chairman of the National Geographic Society is Jean Case. Michael Ulica is interim chief executive; the editor-in-chief of National Geographic magazine is Susan Goldberg. Gilbert Melville Grosvenor, a former chairman, received the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2005 for his leadership in geography education. In 2004, the National Geographic Society headquarters in Washington, D. C. was one of the first buildings to receive a "Green" certification from Global Green USA. The National Geographic received the prestigious Prince of Asturias Award for Communication and Humanities in October 2006 in Oviedo, Spain. In 2013 the society was investigated for possible violation of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act relating to their close association with an Egyptian government official responsible for antiquities. On September 9, 2015, the Society announced that it would re-organize its media properties and publications into a new company known as National Geographic Partners, which would be majority-owned by 21st Century Fox with a 73% stake.
This new, for-profit corporation, would own National Geographic and other magazines, as well as its affiliated television networks—most of which were owned in joint ventures with Fox. As a consequence, the Society and 21st Century Fox announced on November 2, 2015, that 9 percent of National Geographic's 2,000 employees 180 people, would be laid off, constituting the biggest staff reduction in the Society's history; the Society has helped sponsor many expeditions and research projects over the years, including: Codex Tchacos – Conservation and translation of the only known surviving copy of the Gospel of Judas Ian Baker – Discovers hidden waterfall of the Tsangpo Gorge, Tibet Robert Ballard – RMS Titanic and John F. Kennedy's PT-109 discovery Robert Bartlett – Arctic Exploration George Bass – Underwater archaeology – Bronze Age trade Lee Berger – Oldest footprints of modern humans found and Homo naledi Hiram Bingham – Machu Picchu Excavation Richard E. Byrd – First flight over South Pole Jacques-Yves Cousteau – Undersea exploration Mike Fay – MegaTransect and MegaFlyover in Africa Dian Fossey – Mountain gorillas Birute Galdikas – Orangutans Jane Goodall – Chimpanzees Robert F. Griggs – Valley of Ten Thousand Smokes Heather Halstead – World Circumnavigations of Reach the World Louis and Mary Leakey – Discovery of Australopithecus boisei and Homo habilis Gustavus McLeod – First flight to the
U.S. National Geodetic Survey
"United States Coast Survey" and "United States Coast and Geodetic Survey" redirect here. They are former scientific agencies of the United States government which should not be confused with the United States Coast Guard, a seagoing U. S. government law enforcement and safety agency, the modern Coast Survey, a U. S. government agency that makes nautical charts, or the United States Geological Survey, a U. S. government agency that studies earth science and makes topographical maps. The National Geodetic Survey the United States Survey of the Coast, United States Coast Survey, United States Coast and Geodetic Survey, is a United States federal agency that defines and manages a national coordinate system, providing the foundation for transportation and communication. Since its foundation in its present form in 1970, it has been part of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, of the United States Department of Commerce; the National Geodetic Survey's history and heritage are intertwined with those of other NOAA offices.
As the U. S. Coast Survey and U. S. Coast and Geodetic Survey, the agency operated a fleet of survey ships, from 1917 the Coast and Geodetic Survey was one of the uniformed services of the United States with its own corps of commissioned officers. Upon the creation of the Environmental Science Services Administration in 1965, the commissioned corps was separated from the Survey to become the Environmental Science Services Administration Corps. Upon the creation of NOAA in 1970, the ESSA Corps became the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Commissioned Officer Corps. Thus, the National Geodetic Survey's ancestor organizations are the ancestors of today's NOAA Corps and Office of Coast Survey and are among the ancestors of today's NOAA fleet. In addition, today's National Institute of Standards and Technology, although long since separated from the Survey, got its start as the Survey's Office of Weights and Measures; the National Geodetic Survey is an office of NOAA's National Ocean Service.
Its core function is to maintain the National Spatial Reference System, "a consistent coordinate system that defines latitude, height, scale and orientation throughout the United States." NGS is responsible for defining the NSRS and its relationship with the International Terrestrial Reference Frame. The NSRS enables precise and accessible knowledge of where things are in the United States and its territories; the NSRS may be divided into its geometric and physical components. The official geodetic datum of the United States, NAD83 defines the geometric relationship between points within the United States in three-dimensional space; the datum may be accessed via NGS's network of survey marks or through the Continuously Operating Reference Station network of GPS reference antennas. NGS is responsible for computing the relationship between NAD83 and the ITRF; the physical components of the NSRS are reflected in its height system, defined by the vertical datum NAVD88. This datum is a network of orthometric heights obtained through spirit leveling.
Because of the close relationship between height and Earth's gravity field, NGS collects and curates terrestrial gravity measurements and develops regional models of the geoid and its slope, the deflection of the vertical. NGS is responsible for ensuring the accuracy of the NSRS over time as the North American plate rotates and deforms over time due to crustal strain, post-glacial rebound, elastic deformation of the crust, other geophysical phenomena. NGS will release new datums in 2022; the North American Terrestrial Reference Frame of 2022 will supersede NAD83 in defining the geometric relationship between the North American plate and the ITRF. United States territories on the Pacific and Mariana plates will have their own respective geodetic datums; the North American-Pacific Geopotential Datum of 2022 will separately define the height system of the United States and its territories, replacing NAVD88. It will use a geoid model accurate to 1 centimeter to relate orthometric height to ellipsoidal height measured by GPS, eliminating the need for future leveling projects.
This geoid model will be based on airborne and terrestrial gravity measurements collected by NGS's GRAV-D program as well as satellite-based gravity models derived from observations collected by GRACE, GOCE, satellite altimetry missions. NGS provides a number of other public services, it maps changing shorelines in the United States and provides aerial imagery of regions affected by natural disasters, enabling rapid damage assessment by emergency managers and members of the public. The Online Positioning and User Service processes user-input GPS data and outputs position solutions within the NSRS; the agency offers other tools for conversion between datums. The original predecessor agency of the National Geodetic Survey was the United States Survey of the Coast, created within the United States Department of the Treasury by an Act of Congress on February 10, 1807, to conduct a "Survey of the Coast." The Survey of the Coast, the United States government's first scientific agency, represented the interest of the administration of President Thomas Jefferson in science and the stimulation of international trade by using scientific surveying methods to chart t
Marie Byrd Land
Marie Byrd Land is the portion of West Antarctica lying east of the Ross Ice Shelf and the Ross Sea and south of the Pacific Ocean, extending eastward to a line between the head of the Ross Ice Shelf and Eights Coast. It stretches between 158°W and 103°24'W; the inclusion of the area between the Rockefeller Plateau and Eights Coast is based upon the leading role of the American Rear Admiral Richard E. Byrd in the exploration of this area; the name was applied by Admiral Byrd in 1929, in honor of his wife, to the northwestern part of the area, the part, explored in that year. Because of its remoteness by Antarctic standards, most of Marie Byrd Land has not been claimed by any sovereign nation, it is by far the largest single unclaimed territory on Earth, with an area of 1,610,000 km2. In 1939, United States President Franklin D. Roosevelt instructed members of the United States Antarctic Service Expedition to take steps to claim some of Antarctica as United States territory. Although this appears to have been done by members of this and subsequent expeditions, these do not appear to have been formalized prior to 1959, when the Antarctic Treaty System was set up.
Some publications in the United States have shown this as a United States territory in the intervening period, the United States Defense Department has stated that United States has a solid basis for a claim in Antarctica resulting from its activities prior to 1959. The portion west of 150°W is part of Ross Dependency claimed by New Zealand. Five coastal areas are distinguished, which are listed from west to east: Marie Byrd Seamount is a seamount named in association with Marie Byrd Land. Name approved 6/88. Marie Byrd Land was first explored from the west; the far western coast of Marie Byrd Land was seen from the decks of Robert Falcon Scott's ship Discovery in 1902. He named the peninsula adjacent to the Ross Sea King Edward VII Land and the scattered outcrops that were within sight, the Alexandra Mountains. In 1911, during Roald Amundsen's South Pole expedition, Kristian Prestrud led a sledge party that visited these isolated outcrops in the region bordering the eastern Ross Sea and Ross Ice Shelf.
At the same time the first Japanese Antarctic Expedition led by Nobu Shirase landed a shore party on the peninsula. Dean Smith was the pilot during aerial overflights in 1929 with Richard E. Byrd's first Antarctic expedition, it originated from Little America near Amundsen's original base camp Framheim in the Bay of Whales, led to the discovery of the Rockefeller Mountains and the Edsel Ford Ranges farther to the east. Byrd named the region after his wife Marie. A geological party led by L. Gould explored parts of the Rockefeller Mountains; the first deep overland exploration occurred during the second Byrd expedition when a sledge party led by Paul Siple and F. A. Wade reached as far east as the Fosdick Mountains in 1934. Aerial exploration discovered lands farther east along the Ruppert Coast; the Third Byrd Antarctic Expedition called the United States Antarctic Service Expedition, took place from 1939–1941. This expedition established two base camps 1600 miles apart. West Base was near the former Little America base and East Base was near the Antarctic Peninsula on Stonington Island.
Exploration flights out of these two bases led to the discovery of most of the Marie Byrd Land Volcanic Province and much of the coastal region including the Walgreen and Ruppert Coasts. During the expedition trail parties from West Base visited the northern Ford Ranges and south slopes of the Fosdick Mountains; the United States Navy mounted several expeditions to Antarctica in the period 1946 to 1959. These expeditions included aerial photography using the Trimetrogon system of aerial photographs over portions of coastal Marie Byrd Land; the USN began construction of Byrd Station at 80°S, 120°W with traverses out of Little America V in 1956–57 during Deep Freeze II. These efforts were in advance of the International Geophysical Year that saw several exploratory overland traverses with tractor trains. Starting in January 1957 Charles R. Bentley led a traverse from Little America V to the new Byrd station along the route blazed by United States Army engineers a few months before, his team conducted measurements of the Earth's magnetic and gravity field.
The following summer season he led a second traverse out of Byrd Station that visited volcanoes of the Marie Byrd Land Volcanic Province for the first time. The traverse reached the Sentinel Mountains beyond eastern Marie Byrd Land before returning to Byrd Station. Bentley led a third traverse out of Byrd Station to the Horlick Mountains in 1958–59; these three traverses led to the discovery of the Bentley Subglacial Trench or Trough, a deep bedrock chasm between MBL and the Transantarctic Mountains of East Antarctica. During 1958–1960 TMA flights and a traverse out of Byrd Station visited and mapped the Executive Committee Range. TMA were flown in western Marie Byrd Land in 1964 and 1965. Following these efforts the United States Geological Survey mounted land surveys to establish a series of reference points and benchmarks throughout much of Marie Byrd Land during 1966–1968. USS Glacier explored the parts of the Walgreen Coast and Eights Coast in 1960–61, it had pa
The South Pole known as the Geographic South Pole or Terrestrial South Pole, is one of the two points where Earth's axis of rotation intersects its surface. It is the southernmost point on the surface of Earth and lies on the opposite side of Earth from the North Pole. Situated on the continent of Antarctica, it is the site of the United States Amundsen–Scott South Pole Station, established in 1956 and has been permanently staffed since that year; the Geographic South Pole is distinct from the South Magnetic Pole, the position of, defined based on Earth's magnetic field. The South Pole is at the center of the Southern Hemisphere. For most purposes, the Geographic South Pole is defined as the southern point of the two points where Earth's axis of rotation intersects its surface. However, Earth's axis of rotation is subject to small "wobbles", so this definition is not adequate for precise work; the geographic coordinates of the South Pole are given as 90°S, since its longitude is geometrically undefined and irrelevant.
When a longitude is desired, it may be given as 0°. At the South Pole, all directions face north. For this reason, directions at the Pole are given relative to "grid north", which points northwards along the prime meridian. Along tight latitude circles, clockwise is east, counterclockwise is west, opposite to the North Pole; the Geographic South Pole is located on the continent of Antarctica. It sits atop a featureless, barren and icy plateau at an altitude of 2,835 metres above sea level, is located about 1,300 km from the nearest open sea at Bay of Whales; the ice is estimated to be about 2,700 metres thick at the Pole, so the land surface under the ice sheet is near sea level. The polar ice sheet is moving at a rate of 10 metres per year in a direction between 37° and 40° west of grid north, down towards the Weddell Sea. Therefore, the position of the station and other artificial features relative to the geographic pole shift over time; the Geographic South Pole is marked by a stake in the ice alongside a small sign.
The sign records the respective dates that Roald Amundsen and Robert F. Scott reached the Pole, followed by a short quotation from each man, gives the elevation as "9,301 FT.". A new marker stake is fabricated each year by staff at the site; the Ceremonial South Pole is an area set aside for photo opportunities at the South Pole Station. It is located some meters from the Geographic South Pole, consists of a metallic sphere on a short bamboo pole, surrounded by the flags of the original Antarctic Treaty signatory states. Amundsen's Tent: The tent was erected by the Norwegian expedition led by Roald Amundsen on its arrival on 14 December 1911, it is buried beneath the snow and ice in the vicinity of the Pole. It has been designated a Historic Site or Monument, following a proposal by Norway to the Antarctic Treaty Consultative Meeting; the precise location of the tent is unknown, but based on calculations of the rate of movement of the ice and the accumulation of snow, it is believed, as of 2010, to lie between 1.8 and 2.5 km from the Pole at a depth of 17 m below the present surface.
Argentine Flagpole: A flagpole erected at the South Geographical Pole in December 1965 by the First Argentine Overland Polar Expedition has been designated a Historic Site or Monument following a proposal by Argentina to the Antarctic Treaty Consultative Meeting. In 1820, several expeditions claimed to have been the first to have sighted Antarctica, with the first being the Russian expedition led by Fabian Gottlieb von Bellingshausen and Mikhail Lazarev; the first landing was just over a year when American Captain John Davis, a sealer, set foot on the ice. The basic geography of the Antarctic coastline was not understood until the mid-to-late 19th century. American naval officer Charles Wilkes claimed that Antarctica was a new continent, basing the claim on his exploration in 1839–40, while James Clark Ross, in his expedition of 1839–43, hoped that he might be able to sail all the way to the South Pole. British explorer Robert Falcon Scott on the Discovery Expedition of 1901–04 was the first to attempt to find a route from the Antarctic coastline to the South Pole.
Scott, accompanied by Ernest Shackleton and Edward Wilson, set out with the aim of travelling as far south as possible, on 31 December 1902, reached 82°16′ S. Shackleton returned to Antarctica as leader of the British Antarctic Expedition in a bid to reach the Pole. On 9 January 1909, with three companions, he reached 88°23' S – 112 miles from the Pole – before being forced to turn back; the first men to reach the Geographic South Pole were the Norwegian Roald Amundsen and his party on December 14, 1911. Amundsen named his camp Polheim and the entire plateau surrounding the Pole King Haakon VII Vidde in honour of King Haakon VII of Norway. Robert Falcon Scott returned to Antarctica with his second expedition, the Terra Nova Expedition unaware of Amundsen's secretive expedition. Scott and four other men reached the South Pole on January 17, 1912, thirty-four days after Amundsen. On the return trip and his four companions all died of starvation and extreme cold. In 1914 Ernest Shackleton's Imperial Trans-Antarctic Expedition set out with the goal of crossing Antarctica via the South Pole, but his ship, the Endurance, was frozen in pack ice and sank 1