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Operation of Maitri-II station in Antarctica continues up to Jan 2029

Utkarsh Classes 21-12-2023
Operation of Maitri-II station in Antarctica continues up to Jan 2029 Place in News 4 min read

The Government of India has expressed the possibility of completing the operation of Maitri-II station in East Antarctica by January 2029. Union Earth Sciences Minister Kiren Rijiju has given this information in a written reply in the Rajya Sabha on 21 December 2023. 

  • According to Union Minister Kiren Rijiju, space has been identified for the Indian Research Base Maitri II. For this, a preliminary topographic survey is going on.

Details of schedule for completion of topographic survey:

  • 18 months for development of master plan, appointment of consultant, etc.
  • 18 months for drafting tender, awarding contract, etc.
  • 18 months for prefabrication/purchase on mainland, transportation from Cape Town/Antarctica/Indian border to main site etc.
  • 12 months for transportation of final components from the Indian border to the main site and construction in Antarctica by the construction company.
  • The construction of Maitri-II station is likely to be completed by January 2029.

Why is there a need for a new research centre?   

  • India's current research centre, 'Maitri', is quite old. In such a situation, creating a new research centre has become necessary. 
  • The proposed project envisages adherence to environmental protocols for Antarctica and improvement in the quality of Indian scientific research in Antarctica. 

Other research centres of India in Antarctica:

  • The Indian Antarctic Programme, started in 1981, has completed 40 scientific expeditions in November 2021 alone. 
  • India has constructed three permanent research base stations in Antarctica.
  • Their names are Dakshin Gangotri (1983), Maitri (1988) and Bharati (2012).
  • At present, Maitri and Bharti are fully operational. While the condition of South Gangotri is very bad, it has now become a mere supply station.
  • The National Center for Polar and Ocean Research (NCPOR), located in Goa, is an autonomous institute under the Ministry of Earth Sciences. NCPOR manages the entire Indian Antarctic Programme.

Dakshin Gangotri (1983):

  • It was the first Indian scientific research base station in Antarctica as a part of the Indian Antarctic Programme. Presently, the condition of South Gangotri is very bad and it has become just a supply station.

Maitri (1988):

  • India's second permanent research station in Antarctica is called Maitri. Its construction was completed in 1988.
  • It is situated on a rocky, hilly area called 'Shirmakar Oasis'. A freshwater lake known as Priyadarshini Lake has also been built around Maitri in India.

Bharati (2012):

  • This is the newest research station in India. It was constructed in 2012 to provide safety to researchers in harsh weather.
  • Bharti is India's first committed research facility.
  • Bharti is located about 3000 km east of Maitri.

FAQ

Answer:- January 2029

Answer:- 'Priyadarshini Lake' of fresh water is situated near Maitri Research Centre.

Answer:- Dakshin Gangotri (1983)

Answer:- Bharti (2012)
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