ERA publishes new map of Palmer Station for USAP

ERA published a new 1: 15,000 map of Arthur Harbor and Palmer Station for the United States Antarctic Program in August 2013. The orthoimage map is designed to support science, operations and environmental management in the Arthur Harbor area, Anvers Island, Antarctic Peninsula. The map includes the management zones designated under Antarctic Specially Managed Area No.7, which station personnel and visitors need to observe when operating in the region. The map also includes detailed bathymetry derived from the PRIMO science project data, which was verified for accuracy against recent hydrographic data collected by the British ship HMS Protector in 2012. The terrestrial areas were mapped using orthorectified aerial imagery, the photography for which was acquired by the British Antarctic Survey and the ground control was collected in the field by Palmer Station science technicians. Palmer Station, Arthur Harbor, is a US biological research station located on Anvers Island, Antarctic Peninsula. This area has been designated by the Antarctic Treaty Parties in recognition of its important scientific and environmental values, and the need for careful management. The map featured in the US contribution to the map exhibition at the 2013 International Cartographic Conference "From Pole to Pole" in Dresden.

An interactive version of the map is provided under Resources on ERA's website.

Palmer Basin and SW Anvers Island environmental plan and maps

ERA worked in close collaboration with the Office of Polar Programs, US National Science Foundation, the Palmer Long Term Ecological Research (LTER) Program, Raytheon Polar Services (RPS)(Centennial, Colorado), and the United States Antarctic Program to develop a new environmental plan and maps to assist management in the SW Anvers Island region. The plan and maps are for a new Antarctic Specially Managed Area, which the US Government proposed at the 2007 Antarctic Treaty Consultative Meeting held in New Delhi, India.

Preparation of the maps required integration of data from a wide range of sources, and a key challenge was to harmonise as far as possible the geographical referencing on which data were based. Data sources included the RPS (in particular the Survey team), Palmer LTER, Eugene Domack & David Amblas (Palmer Basin bathymetry), Scott Gallagher (Arthur Harbor bathymetry from the PRIMO project), the USGS (orthophotos and survey control), the British Antarctic Survey (1:250K mapping of Anvers Island), and the SCAR Antarctic Digital Database. Maps were prepared as black & white line drawings so they can be easily reproduced using a wide variety of technologies, and show key geographical features in the region, including topography, bathymetry, ice extent, proposed management zones, wildlife breeding localities, and infrastructure at Palmer Station. Palmer Station facilities data are maintained by RPS in AutoCAD format, which were transferred and converted to a form that could be used in ArcGIS.

Antarctic Specially Managed Area No. 7 Palmer Basin and SW Anvers Island was adopted by the Antarctic Treaty Parties through Measure 1 in 2008. After new topographic data became available for Gamage Point later in 2008, minor revisions to the maps were made and these were adopted at the 2009 Antarctic Treaty Meeting held in Baltimore.

The final maps are made available here for reference. The management plan and maps are also available through the Antarctic Treaty Secretariat Protected Area Database.

Maps for ASMA No. 7: Palmer Basin & SW Anvers Island

Map 1: Regional Map & ASMA boundary (pdf 821KB)
Map 2: SW Anvers Island Restricted Zones - Rosenthal, Joubin & Dream Islands (pdf 1MB)
Map 3: Arthur Harbor & Palmer Station access (pdf 953KB)
Map 4: Palmer Station Operations Zone (pdf 211KB)
Map 5: Torgersen Island Zones (pdf 442KB)
Map 6: Dream Island Restricted Zone (pdf 582 KB)
Map 7: Litchfield Island, ASPA No.113 (pdf 149 KB) (Note: the latest ASPA maps for Litchfield Island are available at the Antarctic Treaty website)
Map 8: Biscoe Point, ASPA No.139 (pdf 684 KB) (Note: the latest ASPA maps for Biscoe Point are available at the Antarctic Treaty website)

Thanks to Emma Gatti, Nick McWilliam, Gillian Bunting and Miguel Cardoso for technical GIS assistance.

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Last Update: 11 November 2014