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Ice Station Antarctica - press release


The ice caps are melting but Brits still think polar bears live in Antarctica - home of the penguins.

A new exhibition - Ice Station Antarctica - opens at Natural History Museum for International Polar Year 2007-2008.  It will challenges kids to understand the importance of the frozen continent.

Antarctica is a continent 58 times the size of the UK and it plays a crucial role in understanding global climate change, but one in ten Brits doesn’t know where it is and a third of us still think polar bears live there. The Natural History Museum today launches Ice Station Antarctica, a new family blockbuster exhibition developed in partnership with the British Antarctic Survey that challenges kids to survive the extreme conditions faced by scientists researching this fragile continent, and to find out how Antarctica affects the rest of the planet.

Antarctica is the coldest, windiest and most remote place on Earth. According to research revealed today by the Natural History Museum, many Brits really have got the wrong idea about the continent. One in five of us thinks there are cars, roads, ice rinks or ski lifts there, one in ten thinks it is inhabited by Inuits. Some people even think abominable snowmen can be found there. We really must be worrying about melting ice caps too, as a quarter of those asked thought hairdryers are banned in Antarctica.

Natural History Museum’s exhibition developer Alex Gaffikin explains ‘Every year hundreds of scientists and staff travel to Antarctica, braving harsh conditions and freezing temperatures in order to carry out crucial scientific research - but most people couldn’t even imagine what it really is like to live and work there. At our latest blockbuster experience Ice Station Antarctica we’ll see if visitors have got what it takes to brave Antarctica by challenging all ‘Ice Cadets’ to a series of activities through which they can learn more about the continent, the animals that live there and the valuable research that takes place.’

Director of British Antarctic Survey, Professor Chris Rapley, CBE said

“Today’s society faces unprecedented changes to our global environment. It’s vitally important that we have the best scientists available to understand issues like climate change, and the impact this will have on our planet.  Attracting the next generation of scientists can start now at Ice Station Antarctica.  We embarked on this partnership with the Natural History Museum to enthuse young people in our science and operations. I would hope that children visiting this exhibition will become scientists, citizens and policy makers who will ensure that not only do we continue to get the best scientific research but who will also help future governments make informed decisions about adapting to global change.”

At Ice Station Antarctica a series of mini-environments help you learn about and explore this unique continent including:

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