52 men chosen for Japan's next Antarctic team.
The education ministry chose 52 men Friday to participate in Japan's next Antarctic expedition team, scheduled to depart Japan in November, ministry officials said.
The 52, along with expedition leader Fumihiko Nishio and sub-leader Kokichi Kamiyama, who were chosen earlier, are scheduled to arrive at Japan's Showa Base in the Antarctic in mid-December aboard the icebreaker Shirase, they said.
Among the 54 members of the 43rd Antarctic expedition team, 17 are part of the summer team, which will continue observation activities at the Antarctic through next spring, and 37 are part of the winter team, which will remain in the Antarctic through the spring of 2003.
Six more members will be announced in the fall, bringing the total number of members to 60.
Tsuneo Odate, another sub-leader, and three other members of the summer team will charter a special observation ship for about one month starting in January next year to conduct studies on the relationship between living creatures in the Antarctic, including microorganisms under the ice in the Antarctic Ocean, and the environment.
In areas close to Showa Base, members will examine crustal movements caused by earthquakes by creating an ''artificial earthquake'' using dynamite.
Japan has dispatched researchers to the continent almost every year since sending its first 11-member Antarctic expedition team in 1956.