Photograph of University of Southern California Dean of Research Donal Manahan working underwater in Antarctica, 1980.; Due to its high southern latitude, visitors to Antarctica encounter conditions unlike anywhere else on Earth. The lowest temperature ever recorded was -127° at Russia's Vostok Station. However, explorers and scientists have had to endure more than just bitter cold. Hidden crevasses (cracks in a glacier or ice shelf) often spell doom for those who unwittingly tumble into them. Studying the marine ecosystem requires underwater dives, which creates unique survival challenges. Since the seawater is a chilling 29', one can only stay down for short periods of time before risking hypothermia.