Determination of the Outer Limit of the Extended Continental Shelf of the Western Antarctic Peninsula Using a Bathymetric and Morphological Analysis

Felipe Barrios-Burnett
Master’s Student


Wednesday, Jun. 18, 2014, 2:00pm
Chase 130

Chilean claims in the Antarctic region are subject both to provisions of international law, such as the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) and the Antarctic Treaty System (ATS), and geophysical reality. The Antarctic shelf is a remote and challenging region lacking exploration and systematic data acquisition compared to better studied regions. The Continental Shelf itself, crucial to claims made via the Law of the Sea, have yet to be defined. The Chilean Navy, through its Hydrographic and Oceanographic Service (SHOA), is responsible for the acquisition and processing of bathymetric data of the western part of Antarctic Peninsula, in the Bellingshausen Sea in the Chilean Antarctic Territory. They conducted several systematic hydrographic surveys since the initial study in 2009 and obtained oceanic bathymetric data further south of the Antarctic Circle: 66° 33' S. This is one of the main objectives in this thesis proposal; with the acquired data and Geomatics techniques, by applying UNCLOS definitions and concepts, considering UNCLOS Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf (CLCS) Guidelines to bring evidence to available data in order to establish the outer limit of the Continental Shelf at the west of the Antarctic Peninsula.


Lieutenant Commander Felipe Barrios Burnett is part of the Chilean Navy Hydrographic and Oceanographic Office’s staff. He graduated as an IHO/FIG Cat A Hydrographer by the end of 2002. Since then he has participated in more than 30 surveys from Alaska to Antarctica. In 2008 and 2009, he was part of CCOM in the GEBCO program where he also got Cat A recognition. After his program he sailed from Seward to Kodiak, AK aboard NOAA ship RAINIER and visited the Naval Oceanographic Office (NAVOCEANO) at the Stennis Space Center in Mississippi. Now, he is back to finish his Master’s Degree in Ocean Mapping, researching about Antarctic Continental Shelf.