National Institute of Polar Research

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December 1959 Japan signed the Antarctic Treaty
May 1961 The Science Council of Japan advised the government to establishment of “Institute of Polar Research (tentative name)”
April 1962 Establishment of Polar Department in the National Science Museum
April 1970 Polar Department reorganized into Polar Research Center
September 29, 1973 Polar Research Center reorganized into the National Institute of Polar Research (NIPR)
April 1993 NIPR became a fundamental institute of SOKENDAI (the Graduate University for Advanced Studies)

July 1998

Antarctic Environmental Protection Law went into effect
April 2004 NIPR becomes a member of the new Inter-University Research Institute Corporation, the Research Organization of Information and Systems
May 2009 NIPR relocated to new campus in Tachikawa-shi, Tokyo
August 2009 “NIPR Open House” started
July 2010 NIPR Polar Science Museum opened
September 2013 NIPR celebrated its 40th Anniversary
February 2014 Polar Science Museum recorded 100,000 visitors
July 2017 Polar Science Museum recorded 200,000 visitors

History of Antarctic Expeditions

(January 1912) (Mr. Nobu Shirase’s Antarctic expedition team reached 80 degrees south latitude)
November 1956 Japan’s first Antarctic expedition departed Tokyo with the research vessel “Soya”
January 1957 Syowa Station established in Ongul Island, Antarctica
February 1962 Syowa Station closed temporarily
November 1965 The new research vessel “Fuji” launched
January 1966 Syowa Station reopened
February 1969 Overland round-trip to the South Pole achieved
December 1969 Japan’s first Antarctic meteorite discovery
February 1970 Japan’s first rocket observation
June 1970 Mizuho Station (observation base) established
October 1979 Large number of Antarctic meteorites collected
October 1982 Hole in ozone layer discovered
November 1983 The new research vessel “Shirase” launched
March 1985 Asuka Station (observation base) established
February 1989 Multifunctional antenna installed in Syowa Station
February 1995 Dome Fuji Station established
December 1996 Deep Antarctic ice core which reached 2,503 m obtained at Dome Fuji Station
January 1999 Large number of Antarctic meteorites collected
January 2001 Large number of Antarctic meteorites collected
February 2002 Research vessel “Umitaka-Maru” joined for South Pacific observation
February 2004 Intelsat satellite communication established at Syowa Station
January 2005 Aircraft observation base built in Antarctica
January 2007 Deep Antarctic ice core which reached 3,035 m obtained at Dome Fuji Station
November 2009 New “Shirase” launched
March 2011 PANSY (Program of the Antarctic Syowa MST/IS Radar) radar in Syowa Station made first data recording
August 2014 Snow Vehicles Type-KD60 certified as Mechanical Engineering Heritage in Japan
January 2017 Syowa Station celebrated its 60th anniversary

History of Arctic Research

June 1990 Arctic Environment Research Center established
April 1991 Ny-Ålesund Research Station established
1992 Joins International Arctic Science Committee (IASC)
April 1996 Joins European Incoherent Scatter Scientific Association (EISCAT)
March 1998 Japanese-German airborne Arctic expedition
April 2004 Arctic Environment Research Center reorganized
April 2008 North Greenland Eemian Ice Drilling (NEEM) begins
July 2011 Green Network of Excellence (GRENE) project (Arctic climate change field)
April 2015 Arctic Environment Research Center reorganized to enhance international colaborations
"Arctic Science Summit Week" was held in Toyama
September 2015 The new arctic region research project “Arctic Challenge for Sustinability (ArCS)” launched.
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