From discovery, competition to cooperation-the history of human exploration in Antarctica

  In ancient times, although some wise men predicted the existence of the Antarctic continent, due to limited navigational technical conditions, human beings were unable to sail to verify and investigate. Until the second half of the 15th century, with the breakthrough development of shipbuilding technology and navigation technology, some capitalist countries in Europe sought out new colonies in order to expand outward, and colonial expeditions rose. Explorers began to challenge the natural dangers of Antarctica, thus uncovering humanity. The prelude to the history of the Antarctic expedition. The history of human Antarctic expeditions is generally divided into four eras: the era of discovery, the era of heroes, the era of aviation, and the era of science.
  The era of discovery (1772-1900)
  spans a relatively long period of time, from the time when humans first arrived in Antarctica in the late 18th century to before the 20th century.
  From 1772 to 1775, the famous British navigator James Cook was sent by the British government to lead two dhows “Resolve” and “Adventure” to complete a voyage around the world, thus ushering in the era of discovery of Antarctica. During this circumnavigation of the world, James Cook crossed the Antarctic Circle three times and sailed southward as far as 71°10′ south latitude. This is the first time in the history of human navigation. After that, the British seal hunter Captain William Smith, piloting a brig “Williams”, discovered Livingston Island in the South Shetland Islands in February 1819, and he later declared it. Belongs to the United Kingdom. Upon learning of the news, the British Maritime Military Department sent Edward Bransfield to King George Island and Clarence Island and announced the British ownership of them.
  In July 1819, the Russian Antarctic expedition headed by Bellings Gaojin set off from Kronstadt Port on two sailing ships “Vostok” and “Peace”, sailing to the Atlantic Ocean, passing through the westerly zone, Through the Antarctic Circle 4 times, on January 21 and 28, 1821, Peter I Island and Alexander I Island were discovered respectively.
  The discovery of the Antarctic continent greatly aroused the interest and confidence of explorers and navigators in Antarctic expeditions. Explorers and seal hunters from many countries went to Antarctica one after another. Many islands and coasts were discovered in Antarctica, which was later used for Antarctic expeditions. Laid a preliminary foundation.
  From 1823 to 1824, the British James Weddell explored Antarctica and discovered the first sea in Antarctica, which is now the Weddell Sea. In 1831, the British John Bisco entered the Antarctic Circle and discovered Enderby Land, Adelaide Island and Bisco Islands. Throughout the 19th century, the British, French, Americans, and Norwegians went to Antarctica to explore and hunt. The Antarctic continent, mountains, islands, offshore, and coasts were constantly being discovered. Among them, the expedition led by the Norwegian naturalist Egbert Bockgrewink made it to Cape Adair in Victoria, Antarctica for the first time in January 1895, and built a station there for overwintering. For the first time, mankind won the severe winter on the Antarctic continent. Meteorological, geomagnetic and other scientific data.
  Heroic Age (1901-1927)
  Since the 18th century, especially throughout the 19th century, explorers have conducted more and more exploration activities in Antarctica. However, due to the constraints of objective conditions, existing exploration activities are limited to the coasts of the Antarctic continent. On the surrounding islands, no one dared to challenge the inland Antarctica for expeditions. This situation was immediately broken after entering the 20th century. Explorers were no longer content to repeat the footprints of their predecessors, and began to turn their attention to the Antarctic inland and the South Pole, and launched a race to reach the South Pole first.
  From 1901 to 1904, the British Robert Falken Scott led an expedition team and drove the wooden sailing ship “Discover” equipped with a steam engine to the Antarctic expedition. They discovered the Edward VII Peninsula, wintering in McMurdo Sound Two winters have been spent in the camp. They used sleds to go deep to survey at 82°17′ south latitude and 167° east longitude to make a preliminary attempt to reach the South Pole. On January 18, 1912, Robert Falken Scott finally led an expedition to the South Pole, but at this time he was not the first explorer to reach the South Pole. More unfortunately, he and his team members encountered a blizzard on their way back from the South Pole. Due to starvation, fatigue and cold, Scott and his four partners were killed.
  On January 4, 1909, the expedition led by British Ernest Shackleton arrived at 88°23′ south latitude, only 178 kilometers from the South Pole, but was forced to return due to insufficient food. More than two years later, the expedition led by Norwegian Roald Amundsen reached the South Pole for the first time on December 14, 1911, and returned to the camp on January 25 of the following year. This is the first time that mankind has reached the South Pole.
  The Age of Aviation (1928-1956) The
  20th century was an era of great development in science and technology, and the speed of updating from scientific theories to technology and products was greatly accelerated. For example, airplanes developed rapidly after their birth in the early 20th century, especially after the stimulation of World War I, airplanes soon became an important part of human transportation. The application of aircraft to the Antarctic expedition marked the arrival of the Antarctic aviation era.
  In November 1928, the British Sir Hubert Wilkins flew over Antarctica for the first time, and conducted long-distance observations and aerial photography. In November of the following year, the American General Richard Bird carried out the first voyage to the extreme poles of Vietnam and aerial photography. From 1933 to 1935, Richard Byrd used an airplane to investigate the Antarctic again. Through aerial surveys, it was proved that the Ross Sea and the Weddell Sea were not connected, that is, the Antarctic continent was a whole. In November 1935, American Lincoln Ellsworth flew a plane across the Antarctic Peninsula and landed 4 times, confirming for the first time that the plane could conduct various project investigations on the Antarctic continent.
  From 1946 to 1947, the United States sent a large expedition to Antarctica with more than 4,700 officers and soldiers, and dispatched 19 fixed-wing aircraft, 7 helicopters, and 13 icebreakers, aircraft carriers, submarines, and destroyers. Drove mightily to the South Pole. Under the command of Richard Bird, a huge American expedition team launched a three-dimensional survey and mapping of Antarctica. Among them, the aircraft flew a total of 64 voyages, took 15,000 aerial photos, and 70,000 reconnaissance photos. Through aerial surveys, the geographic locations of at least 18 mountains have been determined, and newly discovered mountains, peninsulas, and islands have been mapped onto the map.
  The United States’ large-scale Antarctic expedition in 1946 has a profound historical background. On the one hand, before this, many countries have formally put forward territorial claims on Antarctica, such as the United Kingdom, France, Norway, New Zealand, Australia, Argentina, and Chile. This is obviously detrimental to the United States; on the other hand, the second world After the war, the United States became strong and has replaced Britain as the top brand in the Western capitalist world. It has both strong strength and urgent national interest needs, which drove the United States to conduct an unprecedented large-scale Antarctic expedition.
  In the scientific age (1957 to present),
  since humans first landed on Antarctica, knowing and understanding Antarctica is one of the contents of all Antarctic expeditions. However, whether it is the age of discovery, the age of heroes, or the age of aviation, scientific expeditions are not the main content and main purpose of the Antarctic expedition, and scientific expeditions are all subsidiary. The scientific age of Antarctic expedition started from the International Geophysical Year (IGY) from 1957 to 1958 and continues to this day.
  The success of IGY made the cooperation in Antarctic scientific expeditions and peaceful activities a consensus of the international community, and directly contributed to the conclusion of the Antarctic Treaty in 1959. After the first IGY, more and more countries are interested in scientific investigations in Antarctica, and they have sent expedition teams to Antarctica to establish scientific research stations and conduct scientific investigations.
  The fruitful results of these observations and surveys have made various countries realize the rationality and necessity of international cooperation in joint surveys of Antarctica. At the same time, the veteran capitalist countries are declining in their national power, and they are overwhelmed by the anti-colonial wave of the world and are unable to continue the game on Antarctic sovereignty. The United States and the Soviet Union also had no intention of involving Antarctica in the Cold War, hoping to shape Antarctica as a region of peace and cooperation. Under the influence of various factors, 12 countries related to the Antarctic expedition signed the “Antarctic Treaty” on December 1, 1959. The treaty stipulates that Antarctica is only used for peaceful purposes and freezes the current claims of Antarctic territorial ownership. The dispute over Antarctica’s sovereignty has temporarily come to an end.
  Throughout the history of the Antarctic expedition, it can be found that since modern times, Antarctica has always received intense attention from the international community, so that international disputes have continued. Although it is currently in a peaceful state, Antarctica is also facing the destruction of the ecological environment and the undercurrent of international struggles. Facing the future, Antarctica will receive more and more countries’ attention and intervention due to its special geographical location, natural conditions, resource endowments and scientific value. Therefore, the road to peace to understand, protect, and use Antarctica is a long way to go.