Location: McMurdo Station is Antarctica’s largest community. It is built on the bare volcanic rock of Hut Point Peninsula on Ross Island, the farthest south solid ground that is accessible by ship.
History: Established in 1956, it has grown from an outpost of a few buildings to a complex logistics staging facility of more than 100 structures including a harbor, an outlying airport (Williams Field) with landing strips on sea ice and shelf ice, and a helicopter pad. The station takes its name from McMurdo Sound which James Clark Ross named in 1841 after Lieutenant Archibald McMurdo of the ship Terror.
Information:The station accommodates 1200 people in summer and 200 in winter. The station covers nearly 1.5 sq. mi. (4 sq.km.) between Hut Point and Observation Hill. There are above-ground water, sewer, telephone, and power lines linking buildings.
Science: The new science facility, the Albert P. Crary Science and Engineering Center (CSEC), dedicated on 5 November 1991, began full operation during the 1994-95 season. The Crary Laboratory supports biological, earth science, atmospheric sciences, and a new aquarium, all under one roof. The Crary facility was named for the geophysicist and geologist Albert P. Crary (1911-1987), the first person to set foot on both the North and South Poles.
Wildlife: King Penguins, Emperor Penguins, Adelie Penguins, Weddell Seals, Antarctic Skua