Soviet Antarctic Expedition

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The Soviet Antarctic Expedition (SAE or SovAE) (Russian : Советская антарктическая экспедиция, САЭ, Sovetskaya antarkticheskaya ekspeditsiya) was part of the Arctic and Antarctic Research Institute of the Soviet Committee on Antarctic Research of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR.

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The Soviet Union's Ministry of Sea Transport was responsible for the administration, logistics and supply of the expeditions.

The first Soviet contact with Antarctica was in January 1947 when the Slava whaling flotilla began whaling in Antarctic waters.

Stations

The first Soviet Antarctic station, Mirny , was established near the coast on February 13, 1956. This was added to in December 1957 by another station, Vostok built inland near the south geomagnetic pole.

Year-round stations

Summer stations

10 Years of Soviet Research in Antarctica, 1966 USSR stamp block 1966 CPA 3318-3320 triangle.png
10 Years of Soviet Research in Antarctica, 1966 USSR stamp block

IGY stations

List of stations in use during the International Geophysical Year.

Expeditions

The Soviet Union engaged in expeditions to Antarctica from 1955 to its dissolution. After this, the Soviet Antarctic stations were taken over by Russia.

See also

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<i>Vostok</i> (sloop-of-war)

Vostok was a 28-gun sloop-of-war of the Imperial Russian Navy, the lead ship of the First Russian Antarctic Expedition in 1819–1821, during which Fabian Gottlieb von Bellingshausen and Mikhail Lazarev circumnavigated the globe, discovered the continent of Antarctica and twice circumnavigated it, and discovered a number of islands and archipelagos in the Southern Ocean and the Pacific.

<i>Mirny</i> (sloop-of-war)

Mirny was a 20-gun sloop-of-war of the Imperial Russian Navy, the second ship of the First Russian Antarctic Expedition in 1819–1821, during which Fabian Gottlieb von Bellingshausen and Mikhail Lazarev circumnavigated the globe, discovered the continent of Antarctica and twice circumnavigated it, and discovered a number of islands and archipelagos in the Southern Ocean and the Pacific.

First Russian Antarctic Expedition 1819–1821 expedition to explore the Southern Ocean and Antarctica

The First Russian Antarctic Expedition took place in 1819–1821 under the direction of Fabian Bellingshausen and Mikhail Lazarev. The expedition aimed to reach the Southern Ocean in order to prove or disprove the existence of a suspected seventh continent, Antarctica. The sloop Vostok was under the command of Bellingshausen, while Lazarev commanded the sloop Mirny. Overall, the crew consisted of 190 people.

Russian Antarctic Expedition is a continuous expedition of the Arctic and Antarctic research Institute Russian Federal service for Hydrometeorology and environmental monitoring of Russia. In RAE, wintering involves conducting in Antarctica for about a year, and seasonal units running in the summer.

The history of exploration by citizens or subjects of the Russian Federation, the Soviet Union, the Russian Empire, the Tsardom of Russia and other Russian predecessor states forms a significant part of the history of Russia as well as the history of the world. At 17,075,400 square kilometres (6,592,850 sq mi), Russia is the largest country in the world, covering more than a ninth of Earth's landmass. In the times of the Soviet Union and the Russian Empire, the country's share in the world's landmass reached 1/6. Most of these territories were first discovered by Russian explorers. Contiguous exploration in Eurasia and the building of overseas colonies in Russian America were some of the primary factors in Russian territorial expansion.

Whaling in the Soviet Union and Russia

Russian whaling has been conducted by native peoples in the Chukotka region of Russia since at least 4,000 years ago by native Yupik and Chukchi people, but commercial whaling did not begin until the mid-19th century, when companies based in Finland sent out vessels to the Pacific. It was not until 1932 that modern pelagic whaling began to take off with the purchase of an American cargo ship which was renamed the Aleut, which was the only Soviet factory ship until World War II. After the war, with the need for a stronger Soviet economy and rapid industrialization of the country during the 1940s and 1950s, Soviet whaling took off and became a truly global industry. The first Soviet whalers reached the Antarctic during the 1946–47 season with the factory ship Slava and then underwent a rapid expansion during the late 1950s in which 5 new fleets were added within a 4-year span: Sovetskaya Ukraina in 1959, Yuriy Dolgorukiy in 1960, and Sovetskaya Rossiya in 1961 for the Antarctic, and finally two large fleets in 1963 for the North Pacific. Thus, by the early 1960s Soviet whaling had truly become a global industry, operating in every ocean except the North Atlantic and undertaking voyages that could last as long as seven months each. From 1964 to 1973, the Soviet Union was considered by some the biggest whaling nation in the world.

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