Let’s go exploring: Google Maps gets 360-degree panoramic images of Antarctica

Let’s go exploring: Google Maps gets 360-degree panoramic images of Antarctica

Google Maps and Street View are a great way to pass time by exploring parts of the world and, one my personal favourite places, Antarctica, just became a lot more appealing after Google added panoramic 360-degree images of the South Pole.

The company introduced Street View to the icy region but now a whole load more data has been unlocked — and added to the fascinating World Wonders project — as Google explains in a blog post:

With the help of the Polar Geospatial Center at the University of Minnesota and the New Zealand Antarctic Heritage Trust, we’ve added 360-imagery of many important spots, inside and out, such as the South Pole Telescope, Shackleton’s hut, Scott’s hut, Cape Royds AdĂ©lie Penguin Rookery and the Ceremonial South Pole.

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Rather than bring the Street View trucks out — and sadly miss out on an opportunity to switch the wheels to skiis — Google used a lightweight tripod camera with a fisheye lens, which is actually the same set-up used for its Business Photos program, though the similarities pretty much end right there.

Check out more the picture-post cards images on Google’s blog or the video below for a look at the stunning imagery, which is live in Google Maps now.

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Shh. Here's some distraction