New Delhi, Sep 4 : China will set up a new observatory station in Antarctica at the region's highest peak within two years.
"The 25th Chinese Antarctic expedition starting in October will mainly focus on building a new station on Dome A and further exploration of the Antarctican plateau," said Wu Jinyou, party secretary with the Polar Research Institute of China.
Wu made the statement during a visit on Wednesday to the Northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region to promote environmental protection.
Dome A is an Antarctic plateau 1200 kilometers inland, and is thought to be one of the coldest naturally occurring places on earth with temperatures believed to reach -90 degrees Celsius.
Wu did not specify when construction of the new station would be finished, Xinhua reported.
Earlier, reports said the construction was expected to be completed by January next year, but the Chinese Arctic and Antarctic Administration (CAA), affiliated to the State Oceanic Administration, said on its website that the construction might well last through 2010.
The station, once completed, will be China's first inland Antarctic research station.
Six countries, including the United States, Russia, Japan, France, Italy and Germany, have already built inland research stations in the Antarctica.