BEIJING, Feb. 8 (Xinhua) -- The Chinese first set foot on Antarctica 30 years ago. The following is a timeline of China's progress in Antarctic research.
November 1984: Chinese researchers reach the Antarctica aboard exploration vessel "Xiangyanghong 10." From then on, China sends research teams to the continent every year.
February 1985: China builds its first Antarctic research base, the Great Wall station on King George Island.
February 1989: China establishes the Zhongshan station in the Larsemann Hills. After several alterations and expansions, the station is a crucial base for scientific studies and logistical support for China's polar expeditions.
1997: China conducts its first inland Antarctic expedition.
1998: China explores Grove Mountain and collects meteorite samples in the area.
January 2005: An expedition team identifies the highest polar icecap peak and makes the first successful ascent.
January 2009: The 25th expedition team opens Kunlun station, China's first inland station on the continent, at Dome Argus (Dome A), the highest icecap. Kunlun camp is used during the southern summer.
February 2014: China's fourth station, Taishan, officially begins operations.
The country is considering a fifth station for year-round research.