Australian Antarctic Territory


Map of Australian Antarctic TerritoryFlag of Australian Antarctic Territory


















The AAT consists of all islands and territories south of latitude 60°S and between longitudes 45° and 160° east except for the French sector of Terre Adélie, which comprises the islands and territories south of 60°S latitude and between longitudes 136° and 142° east. The AAT is the single largest sector of the continent and covers much of east Antarctica. There are three stations (Mawson, Davis and Casey), plus various summer bases and temporary field camps. There is a temporary population of scientists, ranging from about 70 in winter to 200 in summer.


Sealing vessels from a number of countries, notably Britain but also including Australia, visited the Antarctic waters during the 19th century. From the early 20th century serious exploration took off, and Douglas Mawson reached the magnetic South Pole in 1909. Various territorial claims were later made and the Australian Antarctic Territory was transferred to Australian authority in 1933 by the British government through an imperial order in council. The Australian Antarctic Territory Acceptance Act was passed in the same year, and in 1936 the governor-general put the order into force by proclamation.


Mawson Station (named after the explorer) was set up in February 1954 by the Australian National Antarctic Research Expeditions. Davis Station (named after Mawson’s second-in-command, Captain John King Davis) was set up in 1957; Casey Station (named after a former governor-general of Australia, Lord Casey) in 1969. An earlier station, Wilkes, was made inoperable by snow and ice inundation, and closed.


The Territory is administered by the Australian Antarctic Division on behalf of the minister for the environment and heritage. Australia is a party to the Antarctic Treaty. A Protocol on Environmental Protection was added to the Antarctic Treaty in 1991, making Antarctica a natural reserve, devoted to peace and science.



Capital:                      -

Government:              External Australian Territory

Area:                         5.888.800 km²

Population:                 70 to 200 (2008)

Currency:                   Australian dollar (100 cents)

Internet TLD:             -

Dialling code:             +672






Australian Antarctic Territory in Wikipedia.

Flag of Australian Antarctic Territory in Flags of the World.

The website of the Philatelic Service (Australia).

Description of Antarctica (continent) from the CIA.

Official website of the Australian Antarctic Division.




Stamp catalogue


International Polar Year

date:                  16 September 2008

designer:            Chris Shurey

printer:               Energi Print

perforated:         14:14½

size souv. sheet: 130 x 90 mm

remark:              stamps of the same denomination are printed in vertical pairs


1     55 c             SPIREX telescope, organic molecules in space, AASTINO observatory at Dome C, text "astronomy"


                          (cat. Michel /SG /Yvert )


2     55 c             scientists drilling through the ice, ice-breaking ship, skidoos, Sno-cat, text "glaciology"


                          (cat. Michel /SG /Yvert )


Australian Antarctic Territory - pair of stamps as described above


3     $ 1.10          sea butterfly (Limacina helicina), Emperor Penguin diving beneath the icesheet, ship, text

                          "marine biology"


                          (cat. Michel /SG /Yvert )


4     $ 1.10          CTD (conductivity-temperature-depth) probe, ice sea, ship, text "oceanography"


                          (cat. Michel /SG /Yvert )


Australian Antarctic Territory - pair of stamps as described above


5                        souvenir sheet with stamps 1-4, iceberg, IPY emblem, text "INTERNATIONAL POLAR YEAR 2007-08"

                          and "The International Polar Year 2007-08 / marks a new era in polar science. / It draws on the

                          expertise of thousands / of collaborating scientists from 60 / countries to deepen our understanding

                          / of the polar regions and their links / to global processes. / Conducted over two Arctic and two /

                           Antarctic research seasons, International / Polar Year incorporates more than 150 / projects in

                          natural and social sciences. / Australia plays a leadership role in six / research projects and is

                          involved in more / than 40 others."


                          (cat. Michel block /SG MS /Yvert BF)


Australian Antarctic Territory - souvenir sheet as described above



International Polar Year

date:                  4 March 2009

designer:            Doug Pitt

                          ice flowers photographed by Frederique Olivier

                          snow petrels over an ice bridge photographed by Wayne Papps

                          jade iceberg photographed by Karl Rollings

printer:               Energi Print

perforated:         13¾:14½

size souv. sheet: 120 x 80 mm

remark:              issued as part of the campaign 'Preserve the polar regions and glaciers'


6                        souvenir sheet, map of Antarctica, ice flowers, campaign logo, text "A joint initiative with more

                          than 30 countries to / PRESERVE THE POLAR REGIONS AND GLACIERS" and "INTERNATIONAL POLAR

                          YEAR 2007-2008"

       55 c             snow petrel (Padodoma nivea), snow petrels over an ice bridge, campaign logo, text "Snow Petrel"

       $ 2.05          jade iceberg, campaign logo


                          (cat. Michel /SG /Yvert )


Australian Antarctic Territory - souvenir sheet as described above









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last revised: 13 December 2009