Marie Byrd Land

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Marie Byrd Land,

area of W AntarcticaAntarctica
, the fifth largest continent, c.5,500,000 sq mi (14,245,000 sq km), asymmetrically centered on the South Pole and almost entirely within the Antarctic Circle. Geology and Geography

Antarctica consists of two major regions: W Antarctica (c.
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, E of the Ross Shelf Ice and the Ross Sea and S of the Amundsen Sea; the Ford Ranges lie in the northwest part. The region was discovered and claimed for the United States by Richard E. Byrd in 1929. Much of this region was explored during the second Byrd expedition (1933–35) and the U.S. Antarctic Service Expedition (1939–41).
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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Marie Byrd Land


a region in Western Antarctica situated between the Ross Ice Shelf in the west and Ellsworth Land in the east. Most of the region is a glacial plateau, with predominant heights of 1, 000–1, 500 m. Nunataks and mountain ranges (Edsel Ford Range, Hal Flood Range, Crary Mountains), with heights exceeding 3, 000 m, rise above the glacial surface along the coast in the northern part of the region. The highest peak is Mount Sidley (4, 181 m) in the Executive Committee Range. The thickness of the ice sheet ranges from 1, 000 to 2, 000 m and in certain areas exceeds 4, 000 m. Over large areas, the bed of the ice sheet is 500–1, 500 m below sea level. There are places where the ice fills depressions, the floor of which is 2, 000 m and more below sea level.

The US intracontinental research base, Byrd Station, operated in Marie Byrd Land from 1957 through 1972, during which time considerable course (land and air) research was accomplished. In 1972, the western part of the coast of Marie Byrd Land was studied by the 17th Soviet antarctic expedition.

Marie Byrd Land was discovered in 1929 by an American expedition led by R. Byrd, who named the region in honor of his wife.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
Marie Byrd Land is a large unclaimed area in remote West Antarctica, and the Whillans Ice Stream is a river of ice that pours from the ( West Antarctic Ice Sheet into the Ross Ice Shelf.
The mantle plume under Marie Byrd Land formed sometime between 50 and 110 million years ago, a time when the West Antarctic Ice Sheet didn't exist.
He has successfully negotiated some of the most difficult international routes including the north side of Everest, the north face of Kangchenjunga in Eastern Nepal (the world's third highest mountain), Mount Kenya, Mount Aconcaqua in Argentina as well as the Ross Sea and Marie Byrd Land in Antartica.
In the 1930s the US briefly made a claim to the unclaimed territory (Admiral Byrd named it Marie Byrd Land after his wife) but the US did not persist with it because it said that it disapproved of such claims.