site.btaLast Group of 31st National Antarctic Expedition Arrives in Sofia
The last group of participants in the 31st National Antarctic Expedition arrived in Sofia by a flight from Rome on Sunday. The group consists of seven logisticians: Alexander Bogdev, Alexander Velichkov, Boris Yordanov, Yordan Todorov, Marcho Paunov, Milcho Dundakov and Pavel Grigorov, and three researchers: Assoc. Prof. Boris Tsankov, Assoc. Prof. Rayna Hristova, and Dr Vasil Gurev.
The expedition was completed on March 5. The Arctic explorers were transported from Livingston Island in the South Shetlands, where the St Kliment Ohridski Bulgarian Polar Base is located, to the Chilean port of Punta Arenas by the Bulgarian naval research vessel Sv. Sv. Kiril i Metodii and continue their journey back home by scheduled civil aviation flights.
At Sofia Airport, the participants were welcomed by Prof. Christo Pimpirev, Director of the Bulgarian Antarctic Institute and leader of all Bulgarian Antarctic expeditions. He said that the mission was "a stunning success despite the malicious insinuations".
"This is a historic mission because Bulgaria sent a research vessel for the first time," he pointed out.
The ship is now in Mar del Plata, Argentina. The next stops on its route to its home base in Varna (on the Black Sea) are Cartagena, Spain, and Piraeus, Greece.
The first group of the 31st National Antarctic Expedition left for Livingston Island from Sofia on November 23.