Antarctica is one of the places with the most extreme conditions on Earth. The signing of the Antarctic Treaty in 1959 and the Madrid protocol on environmental protection in 1991 established that Antarctica is a continent dedicated to peace and science. Its isolation and level of preservation make it an ideal natural laboratory for the study of environmental processes, both locally and globally. The Museum has been researching the functioning of the Antarctic ecosystem and how it is affected by human action for more than 30 years. Expeditions use permanent infrastructure such as scientific bases and other temporary infrastructure such as camps or ocean vessels that make it possible to study penguins, lichens or volcanoes up close, among many other elements. The visitor will be able to enter a continent unknown to most people, the coldest place on earth and with most of its surface covered in ice, but also home to 5 percent of the world's marine biodiversity and the deposit of 90 percent of the fresh water on the entire planet. All these characteristics make it an exceptional setting to capture the attention of scientists from all over the world.
Video plans made by the Navy, filming of the activities of researchers from the PolarCSIC Interdisciplinary Thematic Platform and photographs by different authors present this space that gives life to the fauna, history, climate and research of the Antarctic continent, in addition to creating a space for reflection on the serious consequences already visible in this ecosystem, with the melting of the polar caps and the retreat of glaciers being one of those that most concern experts.
This exhibition is organized by the National Museum of Natural Sciences (MNCN/CSIC) and its curators are María Asunción de los Ríos Murillo and Andrés Barbosa.