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China opens fourth research station in Antarctic

Published on Feb 10, 2014 12:45 PM

BEIJING (AFP) - China's fourth Antarctic research station - the flying saucer-shaped Taishan - has officially opened, in another step for the country's exploration ambitions in both earth and space.

The station, named for one of China's five sacred mountains, sits at an altitude of 2,600m between China's Zhongshan and Kunlun stations, according to the State Oceanic Administration (SOA).

The site's average annual temperature is minus 36.6 deg C and construction began on Dec 28.

The state-run Xinhua news agency reported at the weekend that President Xi Jinping offered written congratulations, calling scientific research in the frozen continent important for exploring nature and developing mankind.

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