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Mapping and Geographic Information Centre

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The Mapping and Geographic Information Centre (MAGIC) provides maps and other geographic information to workers at BAS. It acquires topographic data in Antarctica, prepares new maps, maintains databases of digital maps, supplies printed maps to BAS staff and provides expertise in geographical analysis. MAGIC also maintains a library of Antarctic maps and aerial photographs.

Scientific and logistic work require detailed maps to analyse results and plan activities. However, Antarctica is poorly mapped because of the hostile environment and the vast areas to be covered. Therefore, MAGIC prepares new maps in support of BAS’ activities. Aerial photographs and survey information obtained in Antarctica are used to prepare maps at BAS Cambridge. Other sources of information such as satellite images are also used to compile maps. Because the information for creating maps is usually sparse, MAGIC develops new techniques to use limited data.

Map compilation is carried out using computers, and the results are stored in digital databases. MAGIC also maintains a digital map (the Antarctic Digital Database) for the whole of Antarctica on behalf of the Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research. Such databases allow maps to be tailored to the needs of the user, and provide a basis for geographical analysis.

BAS Map Catalogue

View a list of British Antarctic Survey maps and buy online.