This map is the result of initiatives supported by the International Polar Year 2007-2009, following which the CGMW launched a programme in 2007 to prepare maps of the polar regions. The Antarctic domain, covering the region south of 60°S, has been entrusted to the Gramberg Institute for Geological and Mining Research of the World's Oceans (VNIIOkeangeologia, St Petersburg, Russia). The first draft of the new 1:10 000 000 Tectonic Map of Antarctica was completed in 2011 and, after critical review by specialists from the CGMW and other institutions, was printed in France for presentation at the 34th International Geological Congress (Brisbane, August 2012).
This first tectonic synthesis of Antarctica integrates historical knowledge of the geological structure of the Antarctic continent, the most recent results of geochemical and isotopic studies, and geophysical measurements obtained by oceanographic and airborne campaigns. For the first time, the continental structures and those of the circum-Antarctic domain are shown side by side, thus providing a completely new picture of the geodynamic history of the entire polar region. Following the principles of other tectonic syntheses published by the CGMW, the legend has been designed so that the structural units and features mapped appear according to categories that distinguish their continental or oceanic nature, their age and the geodynamic framework of their formation. The vast East Antarctic Ice Sheet has been characterised in this map solely by the topography of its underlying bedrock. However, the interpretation of the structure of this region is presented in the small-scale Tectonic Provinces of the Antarctic Continent box which, together with the Physiographic Map box, complements the data on the main map.