Construction of Korea's first research base in Antarctica, Jang Bogo Station, is 80 percent complete, and is expected to be fully operational on February 14.
The Ministry of Ocean and Fisheries made this announcement as the ceremony for the send-off of the first research crew team and appointment of two honorary ambassadors were held.
Antarctica’s normal temperature is -34 degrees Celsius, making outdoor work virtually impossible. Construction can only be done 65 days out of the year, and in the past most countries’ attempts to build bases in Antarctica often resulted in delays of up to 1 year. But Jang Bogo will be completed quicker than expected on February 14.
Jang Bogo Station is 4,500m2, large enough for a research staff of 60. It runs on power generated by wind and solar energy.
The first group of researchers - Korea's first ever to be placed in Antarctica - undergo rigorous acclimatization training before leaving on January 25. They will stay at Jang Bogo until the end of the mission, which will be completed on December 31.
Moon Hae-nam from the Ministry of Ocean and Fisheries said, “Since establishing the first outpost in 1985, Korea has become the tenth country in the world to hold two research bases in Antarctica.” He then exclaimed, “This is a proud moment for Korea.”