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From 8th July 2008 to 31st March 2009


Spanish version available

Partnership Parque de las Ciencias





Department of Communication Cristina González Lourdes López Javier Arroyo Parque de las Ciencias Avd. del Mediterráneo s/n 18006. Granada Tel.: 958 131 900 Fax: 958 133 582

The Antarctic was first seen and registered 190 years ago. For almost two centuries very few news on this continent have been reported. The exhibition ‘Antarctic. Polar Station’ at the Parque de las Ciencias de Andalucía contributes to reveal the mysteries of this territory trough a wide variety of resources in an area of 2,000 square meters. The exhibition comprises over 400 single pieces and real scenarios that allow visitors to smell, feel and ‘enjoy’ Polar temperatures. In addition, modern interactive technologies and its avant-garde design make this exhibition the best one ever organized about the continent of penguins in Europe. Since mass visits to the Antarctic are not feasible, on the occasion of the International Polar Year the ice territory moves to Granada to show visitors all its secrets. Antarctic. Polar Station shows the efforts made by the International Scientific Community to understand our planet!

On the 8th of July 2008 the Parque de las Ciencias opens the greatest exhibition that has ever been organized about the Antarctic at the European level. The 2,000 m2 area offers visitors the opportunity to experience an expedition to the ice continent through the participation in different challenges and activities within the exhibition, which does not come to an end with the visit: visitors can check their skills to survive at the southern continent on a web site where they have the opportunity to continue their training as polar cadets.

‘Antarctic. Polar Station’ has been co-produced by the Parque de las Ciencias and the Natural History Museum (London) and is placed at the Temporary Exhibition Pavilion of our new building. The exhibition is interactive, thus allowing visitors to live and feel the experience of working at the greatest natural lab of humanity. The exhibition invites visitors to feel cold, extreme weather conditions, risks and the sensation of surviving at the driest, windiest and coldest region of the planet. It comprises an Antarctic camp, a room at a temperature of -10 degrees, interactive modules, naturalized animals, skeletons, plants, fossils, scale models, infographics, maps, original pieces, scientific instruments, means of transport such as snow motorcycles, audiovisual works, workshops and animations.


Exhibition areas You can become a Polar Expert by learning about the origins of the Polar continent and its peculiarities and participating at the different challenges of the exhibition.

1. The ends of the Earth This module has a great visual impact. It represents the habitats of the Arctic and the Antarctic through naturalized fauna and flora and other figurative elements such as a Eskimo. This area focuses on the huge differences between the extremes of our planet. Some data may be surprising, as the fact that there are no bears or native human life in these areas.

2. Geography of the South Pole The Antarctic continent was the last one to be discovered. Its weather conditions and isolated location made its discovery difficult over the centuries. Numerous expeditions carried out during the 21st century helped shape the first maps of the ice continent, which at the beginning were roughly schematic representations of certain coast regions. In this area visitors can improve their knowledge of the geography of this continent.

3. Expeditions and expeditions’ members Over 500 expeditions to the Antarctic were made throughout the 21st century. The aim of these expeditions was the trade in seal and sea lion fur and the hunting of whales, which decimated the populations of these mammals leading them almost to extinction. The first scientific expedition was held in 1898. Its members obtained very valuable information on zoology, geology, meteorology, and terrestrial magnetism.

4. A continent for research This area presents research studies and works made by Spanish scientists at the Antarctic in the framework of the International Polar Year.


5. Surviving cold weather The Antarctic is one of the coldest places in the Earth. Visitors are invited to a room at -10 degrees so that they can experience the extreme weather conditions of the ice continent.

6. Living surrounded by wildlife In this area visitors can experience the sounds and smells of some animal colonies of the Antarctic. In one of the activities, visitors have to recognize the smell of penguin excrements and vomit.

7. Living below zero degrees. Antarctic Biodiversity Rigorous weather, the thick layer of ice and snow covering the surface of the Earth and the long dark winter period determine a limited diversity in the continental Antarctic. In this overwhelmingly beautiful and extremely cold scenario native human life has never existed. Plant life only exists on 4% of the surface. Plants are scarce and small, limited to mostly lichens, some mosses, algae and two species of flowering plants. There are no terrestrial vertebrates and the 100 species of terrestrial animals existing in the Antarctic are invertebrate, most of them small insects such as flies, mosquitoes, spiders, fleas and lice living in mosses, lichens or under rocks located close to colonies of birds. Such a scarce diversity of continental species contrasts with the great richness of sea animals, especially in the ocean floor.

8. From Pangea to the Antarctic 300 million years ago continental mass formed a single supercontinent called Pangea. One hundred years later it broke up into two megacontinents: Laurasia to the North and Gondwana to the South, which in turn broke up into large blocks separated by faults in the continental lithosphere originating large and deep seas. These blocks dispersed in a process that is still active forming our continents. The Antarctic is a continental block derived from the ancient Gondwana which separated from Australia and moved from its location on the tropical area to the Pole, where it is located today.

9. Researching and understanding The Antarctic has a crucial role for life in the Earth due to its influence on numerous natural processes. It is connected with all oceans, thus its role in the global flow of sea water and in the Earth climate conditio12

ns is decisive. For this reason, it is a unique place for scientific research. Some of the main works carried out at the ice continent are presented in this area.

10. Organization and logistics Research in the Antarctic requires facilities, technical resources and services adapted to extreme weather conditions, as well as logistics such as food supply, scientific instruments, transport for people and goods, disposal of waste material, maintenance and communications. Some of these elements are presented in this area.

11. Living in the Antarctic In this area visitors can examine real belongings of members of the Antarctic camp and know their daily routine during their stays at the continent.

12. Diving under sea ice The challenge of this area is diving in Antarctic water as real diver in order to have the opportunity to observe weird and gigantic creatures.

13. Adaptation to cold weather Living beings adapt to the environment where they live. Generation after generation small changes undergone by species allow them to survive in their environment. Therefore, adaptation is an evolution process. In order to survive in places with so extreme conditions as the Antarctic, organisms have evolved through a great variety of strategies that are presented in this area.

14. Driving a snow motorcycle Interactive activity in which visitors drive snow motorcycles on the quest for remains of meteorites fallen in the Antarctic.

15. Camping in the Antarctic Representation of an Antarctic campsite where visitors can learn how to camp at a temperature below zero degrees.


16. Spending two months in the darkness This is the last challenge. Some researchers have to spend up to six months in the darkness in the Antarctic. In this area visitors can check whether they would resist the claustrophobia generated by living in so cold and dark conditions.

17. Training Workshop ‘Antarctic. Polar Station’ presents a training workshop where visitors can learn the reasons why weather conditions at the Antarctic are so extreme, the behaviour patterns of continental ice, how to locate the continent or the way in which the ozone layer is being destroyed due to the impact of climate change, among others.

18. How to learn more and access to the Internet Informative panels, a reading point, a thinking point, access to the Internet: all these resources allow visitors to obtain further information about the Antarctic, in particular about the fauna, weather, climate change, the ozone layer, geology, history, expeditions, etc. There are related books, articles from journals and magazines, and the possibility to surf the best web sites available about the Antarctic. For more information visit our web site:

19. Surviving the challenge Finally, visitors can see their score in the different challenges and they are informed about the type of tasks they could carry out at the Polar Station.

20. The exhibition continues at home Every visitor is given a code at the entrance so that he/she can continue participating in different challenges on the Internet. They will be supervised by an expert who grants them the accreditation of Polar Cadets if they pass all tests. 14


Technical information Production

Parque de las Ciencias and Natural History Museum (London)

Technical features

2000 m2 pavilion for temporary exhibitions. Large format, fitted with adequate technologies for temperature, light and humidity control that the most demanding pieces require. Contemporary museographics: multimedia resources, historic pieces and all tools necessary to make the exhibition discourse fluent and complete. Languages: Spanish and English. General Audience. Full accessibility.

Exhibition elements

Over 20 modules and interactive activities. Over 400 unique pieces: original pieces, replicas, models, naturalized items, classical and current scientific instruments, historic books, etc. A great display of visual resources. Specialized software allowing visitors to continue the visit on the Internet.



From 8th July 2008 to 31st March 2009

Some remarkable pieces Historic scientific instruments Telescope (from the Malaespina expedition in the southern region, carried out in the 18th century) Equatorial circle (from the Malaespina expedition in the southern region, carried out in the 18th century) Earth globe from the 18th century Original travel books from real expeditions

Naturalized items Several species of Antarctic penguin, such as Gentoo and chinstrap penguins, among others. An original skeleton of a Risso’s dolphin Original Antarctic sea animals that have been naturalized (corals, sponges, crustaceans, etc.) A sea lion’s skeleton Polar bear Muskox

Instrument used in the Antarctic Submarine robot Stratospheric globes Sea sediments Plankton nets Antarctic igloos

Sensory elements Extreme cold room 8 m3 iceberg



You can’t miss it! Interactive modules and experiences A great display of audiovisual resources screened with a large format projector Representation of an Antarctic base Scientific instruments used in the expedition carried out in Malaespina in the last third of the 18th century Numerous original pieces donated by researchers working in the Antarctic. Over 400 pieces: naturalized items, up-to-date and classical instrument, etc. Sensory experience in extreme temperature conditions. An 8 m3 iceberg you can touch. Original meteorite discovered in the 16th century. Igloos and interactive activities, such as driving a snow motorcycle. Collaborators: more than 40 scientific institutions from more tan 30 countries. 3 months more on the Internet! You get a personal code to continue the expedition at home.


Dossier de prensa Antartida. Estacion Polar  

Informacion de prensa de la exposicion 'Antartida. Estacion Polar