Throwing water in air
The Mighty Glacier

Trapped in the ice!

Antarctica has about 90% of the world’s fresh water but it is trapped in the Antarctic ice sheet. This ice sheet is a layer of ice on the continent formed from thousands of years of snowfall that has been compressed as new snow has been deposited on top. It is the largest single mass of ice on Earth covering 99% of the continent, an area of 14 million km2, to a maximum depth of 4700m.

Making fresh water

To make fresh water at Scott Base, seawater is collected from the sea and put through a process called reverse osmosis that removes the salt. This takes lots of electrical energy. Electrical energy comes from two places: diesel generators (that also heat the base) and wind turbines that make electricity from wind energy.

Saving water

As you can see, it is very important to conserve fresh water. Ways to save water are to use hand sanitizers rather than soap and water, only do full loads of washing (and taking your last lot of washing home to New Zealand), using non-drinkable water in toilets, and showering for less than 3 minutes. 

More information

Find our more about Antarctic Ice from the 2015 LEARNZ field trip to Antarctica.

Listen to the below audio file for more information about auroras: