Antarctica is the coldest, driest, windiest, highest and perhaps the most spectacular continent in the world.
This is despite the fact that more than 75 per cent of the world’s fresh water is trapped in the ice of Antarctica.
It never rains in Antarctica—it only snows and not very often.
A huge dome-shaped ice sheet covers approximately 98 per cent of Antarctica’s surface.
Antarctica’s land mass is actually forced down by an average of 1 kilometer because the land mess is under the weight of over 30 million cubic kilometers of ice.
If Antarctica’s ice sheet were to melt, the world’s oceans would rise by 65 to 70 meters.
The sheer weight of Antarctica’s huge ice sheet forces it to move a few centimeters north every year.
Antarctica is home to the world’s largest glacier—the Lambert glacier. It is over 1 million square kilometers.
This gigantic river of ice drains 10 per cent of the Antarctica ice sheet.
There ice shelves make up over 11 per cent of Antarctica.
The largest recorded iceberg in Antarctica was approximately 335 kilometers by 97 kilometers.
As winter approaches, the icebergs can become trapped in the sea ice. More than 100,000 square kilometers of the sea freeze each day. Winter ice almost doubles the size of the ice-covered continent, making it almost 20 million square kilometers.
As shown in 2.1.6, both the Arctic（North Pole）and Antarctica（South Pole）experience extreme climatic conditions as a result of the amount of sunlight available during different seasons.
In the winter, the temperature can drop below minus 80℃, while in summer the temperature warms up to an average temperature of minus 18℃.
The interior is extremely cold with temperature as low as minus 89.2℃（at Vostok research station）and only about 50 millimeters of snow falls annually.
Katabatic winds are forced by gravity toward the coast from the interior of the continent, which is over 4,000 meters above sea levels.