Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Mails from Republic of Korea (2)

As promised yesterday here is the second cover I got from Korea.

It bears a stamp and a full souvenir sheet issued on the 15th of February this year, to commemorate the 20th anniversary of the King Sejong Station in the scope of the 2007-2008 International Polar Year.
The King Sejong station is a research station for the Korea Antarctic Research Program established on the 17th of February 1988 and located on the Barton Peninsula (
King George Island). Human habitation of King George Island is limited to research stations belonging to Argentina, Brazil, Chile, China, South Korea, Peru, Poland, Russia, and Uruguay.
The King Sejong station is named after King Sejong the Great of Joseon (1397-1450) the fourth king of the Joseon Dynasty of Korea.
During the summer the research station welcomes up to 90 people. In winter only 17 engineers and scientists are present to maintain the station and collect data with a focus on general change of the natural environment. In these times of global warming and destruction of ozone layer, research and observation done in such remote scientific stations is a key element. Korea has some plans to build a second station on the Antarctic continent by 2011.

When seeing this cover and learning about the subject of the stamps I was wondering how must be in such remote stations. I guess this must be an extreme human experience to stay over one summer in such places…
The pictorial postmark is a bit fuzzy, because I guess the stamp has slipped over the paper of the souvenir sheet. It seems to picture a map of the Antarctic and two scientists digging a hole in the ice, the same than the ones pictured on the right border of the sheet.



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