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How cold is it in Antarctica?


In Antarctica, the wind speed and air temperature combine to create cold conditions. At the South Pole Station, the temperature ranges from -25.9 °C to -58 °C, on average, while the wind speed can exceed 55 knots- or 102 mph.  The high speed wind blows against our exposed skin and causes us to perceive a temperature lower than the air temperature.  This windchill is a function of wind speed and the ambient air temperature:

                  Twc = 35.74 + 0.6215T - 35.75(V0.16) + 0.4275T(V0.16)

where Twc is wind chill temperature (°F), T is air temperature (°F), and V is wind speed (mph).

Today, the air temperature is -8 °C at McMurdo and -27 °C at the South Pole station, but due to the 13 knot winds, the people at pole experience -41°C.







Wind chill, in mph, against temperature, in °F, with the shaded regions indicating the amount of time required to get frostbite in those conditions.