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World > > Antarctica > Transportation (Facts)

Antarctica - Transportation (Facts)
Airports: 32
note: there are no developed public access airports or landing facilities; 22 stations and 10 remote field locations, operated by 12 National Antarctic Programs from nations party to the Antarctic Treaty, have restricted aircraft landing facilities comprising a total of 12 runways and 25 skiways for fixed-wing aircraft; some stations have both runways and skiways; commercial enterprises operate two aircraft landing facilities at one station; helicopter pads are available at all 37 year-round and 16 seasonal stations operated by National Antarctic Programs; the 12 runways are suitable for wheeled, fixed-wing aircraft: three are gravel, five blue-ice, two sea-ice and two compacted snow; of these, five are 3 km in length, two are between 2 km and 3 km in length, three are between 1 km and 2 km in length, one is less than 1 km in length, and one has length that varies with conditions; the 25 snow surface skiways are limited to use by ski-equipped, fixed-wing aircraft; of these, three are equal to or greater than 3 km in length, one is between 2 km and 3 km in length, 11 are between 1 km and 2 km in length, four are less than 1 km in length, and six are of unknown or variable length; snow surface skiways are generally prepared and maintained during specific periods only and during summer; all aircraft landing facilities subject to severe restrictions and limitations resulting from extreme seasonal and geographic conditions; aircraft landing facilities do not meet ICAO standards; advance approval from the respective governmental or nongovernmental operating organization required for using their facilities; landed aircraft are subject to inspection in accordance with Article 7, Antarctic Treaty; guidelines for the operation of aircraft near concentrations of birds in Antarctica were adopted in 2004; relevant legal instruments and authorization procedures adopted by states party to the Antarctic Treaty regulating access to the Antarctic Treaty area, that is to all areas between 60 and 90 degrees of latitude South, have to be complied with (see information under 'Legal System'); an Antarctic Flight Information Manual (AFIM) providing up-to-date details of Antarctic air facilities and procedures is maintained and published by the Council of Managers of National Antarctic Programs (2007)
Airports - with unpaved runways: total: 32
over 3,047 m: 1
2,438 to 3,047 m: 8
1,524 to 2,437 m: 1
914 to 1,523 m: 12
under 914 m: 3
length unknown or variable: 7 (2007)
Heliports: 53
note: all 37 year-round and 16 seasonal stations operated by National Antarctic Programs stations have restricted helicopter landing facilities (helipads) (2007)
Ports and terminals: there are no developed ports and harbors in Antarctica; most coastal stations have offshore anchorages, and supplies are transferred from ship to shore by small boats, barges, and helicopters; a few stations have a basic wharf facility; US coastal stations include McMurdo (77 51 S, 166 40 E), and Palmer (64 43 S, 64 03 W); government use only except by permit (see Permit Office under 'Legal System'); all ships at port are subject to inspection in accordance with Article 7, Antarctic Treaty; offshore anchorage is sparse and intermittent; relevant legal instruments and authorization procedures adopted by the states parties to the Antarctic Treaty regulating access to the Antarctic Treaty area, to all areas between 60 and 90 degrees of latitude south, have to be complied with (see 'Legal System'); The Hydrographic Committee on Antarctica (HCA), a special hydrographic commission of International Hydrographic Organization (IHO), is responsible for hydrographic surveying and nautical charting matters in Antarctic Treaty area; it coordinates and facilitates provision of accurate and appropriate charts and other aids to navigation in support of safety of navigation in region; membership of HCA is open to any IHO Member State whose government has acceded to the Antarctic Treaty and which contributes resources and/or data to IHO Chart coverage of the area; members of HCA are Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Chile, China, Ecuador, France, Germany, Greece, India, Italy, NZ, Norway, Russia, South Africa, Spain, and the UK (2006)


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