Research, Air Link, Expeditions
Tasmania was once physically linked to Antarctica and historic connections date back to 1777 when the English explorer Captain James Cook sought a safe anchorage on Bruny Island after circumnavigating the frozen continent. Hobart was a vital staging post in the heroic age of east Antarctic exploration. France's Dumont d'Urville, Australia's Douglas Mawson, England's James Clark Ross, Norway's Carsten Borchgrevink and Roald Amundssen all paused in the Derwent on their way to Antarctica. Amunsden told the world from the steps of the Hobart Post Office of his success in reaching the geographic South Pole. A Tasmanian physicist, Louis Bernacchi, was the first Australian to over-winter in Antarctica.
Tasmania's links to Antarctica have grown from strength to strength in subsequent years. Tasmanians have built an impressive international reputation for science, environmental management systems, policy coordination and for contributing to the Antarctic treaty system. Hobart is home to Australia’s Antarctic Division, CSIRO’s Division of Marine Research, the Cooperative Research Centre for Antarctica and the Southern Ocean and the international Commission for the Conservation of Marine Antarctic Living Resources. The city is recognised internationally as a world-class centre for Antarctic science, research, management, education and logistics and houses the scientific headquarters for many national Antarctic research institutions. In 2007, the first Australian flights carrying scientific teams were made from Hobart airport to Casey Station in east Antarctica.
Hobart can provide comprehensive support for national and international expeditions and programs. Antarctic ships from the US, China and Russia visit Hobart's deep-water port and specialist companies supply the Australian, French and Italian bases on Antarctica.