NIWA scientists have worked for many years on Antarctic atmospheric processes and aquatic ecosystems. Our research vessel RV Tangaroa also supplies logistical support for scientific studies and hydrographic surveys in the Southern Ocean.

Our Far South

Our Far South: Beyond Stewart Island was a month-long voyage around Antarctica and the sub-Antarctic islands in 2012, organised by economist and investor Gareth Morgan. The voyage aimed to raise New Zealanders' awareness of the issues that face the region south of Stewart Island: the Southern Ocean, the sub-Antarctic islands, and Antarctica. New Zealand has a significant stake in this huge region, which faces significant opportunities and challenges.

Lean more about Our Far South.



Dr Craig Stevens shares images and experiences from experiment K132, which is at a coastal ocean flow in Antarctica: unlike most oceanography the work is conducted from camps on sea ice. 

Check out our 'Antarctic report' photo gallery.


Dr Craig Stevens talks about his work on sea ice:

Craig Stevens on Antarctic Sea Ice


  • Antarctic hydrographic surveys
  • Vessel support for international research programmes

Antarctica New Zealand

Antarctica New Zealand, also known as the New Zealand Antarctic Institute, is responsible for developing, managing, and administering New Zealand activities in Antarctica and the Southern Ocean.

Ice Tethered Profiler being deployed in Antarctica by NIWA and Antarctica NZ staff. Mount Erebus in the background. (Craig Stewart, NIWA)
Tangaroa in Ross Sea pack ice during the 2008 IPY-CAML voyage (Peter Marriot IPY-CAML)
Kayaking amid icebergs near Nansen Island, on the west coast of the Antarctic Peninsula. (Katja Riedel)
Ice core containing bubbles of trapped atmosphere from the past
Pelorus on Tangaroa deck in ice. [NIWA]
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    Processes and interactions in the Antarctic atmosphere

    The Antarctic atmosphere is physically and chemically unique and influences all latitudes. The goal of this programme is to improve our understanding of the Antarctic atmosphere's role in global change and its response to that change.
  • New Zealand IPY-CAML project

    New Zealand conducted a major biological survey of the Ross Sea, in the Antarctic, as part of the Census of Antarctic Marine Life (CAML) and International Polar Year (IPY).