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This article lists extreme locations on Earth that hold geographical records or are otherwise known for their geophysical or meteorological superlatives. All of these locations are Earth-wide extremes; extremes of individual continents or countries are listed in separate articles under the Extreme points by region section. For other lists of extreme places on Earth, see Lists of extreme points. For more detailed meteorological and climatic records, see List of weather records.

Latitude and longitude

See also: List of northernmost items and List of southernmost items

Northernmost

Southernmost

Easternmost and westernmost

Longest grid lines

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Along constant latitude

Along constant longitude

Along any geodesic

These are the longest straight lines[c] that can be drawn between any two points on the surface of the Earth and remain exclusively over land or water; the points need not lie on the same line of latitude or longitude.

Along any truly straight line

As distinct from all of the aforementioned geodesic lines, which may appear straight but are actually arcs of great circles projected on the spheroidal surface of the Earth and, accordingly, are not truly straight but rather curving lines, authentically straight lines can be projected through the interior of the Earth between almost any two points on the surface of the Earth (some extreme topographical situations being the rare exceptions). If a line projected from the summit of Cayambe in Ecuador (see highest points) through the axial centre of the Earth to its antipode on the island of Sumatra, then the resulting diametrical line would be the longest truly straight line that could be produced anywhere on or through the Earth. As the variable circumference of the Earth approaches 40,000 kilometres (25,000 mi), such a maximum "diametrical" or "antipodal" line would be on the order of 13,000 kilometres (8,000 mi) long.

Elevation

See also: Lists of highest points, List of elevation extremes by region, and List of elevation extremes by country

Highest points

The summit of Chimborazo in Ecuador is the farthest point from Earth's centre.
The summit of Chimborazo in Ecuador is the farthest point from Earth's centre.

Highest geographical features

Highest points attainable by transportation

La Rinconada, Peru

Lowest points

Lowest natural points

See also: List of places on land with elevations below sea level

The shore of the Dead Sea in Israel
The shore of the Dead Sea in Israel

Lowest artificial points

Lowest points attainable by transportation

Table of extreme elevations and air temperatures by continent

See also: List of elevation extremes by region and List of weather records

Continent Elevation (height above/below sea level)A Air temperature (recorded)[34]B
Highest Lowest Highest Lowest
Africa 5,893 m (19,334 feet)
Kilimanjaro, Tanzania[35]
−155 m (−509 feet)
Lake Assal, Djibouti[36]
55 °C (131 °F)
Kebili, French Tunisia
7 July 1931C
−23.9 °C (−11.0 °F)
Ifrane, French Morocco
11 February 1935
Antarctica 4,892 m (16,050 feet)
Vinson Massif[37]
−50 m (−164 feet)[38]
Deep Lake, Vestfold Hills
(compare the deepest ice section below)
20.75 °C (69.35 °F)
Comandante Ferraz Antarctic Station
9 February 2020
−89.2 °C (−128.6 °F)
Vostok Station

21 July 1983
Asia 8,848.86 m (29,032 feet)
Mount Everest, Tibet-Nepal Border [39]
−424 m (−1,391 feet)
Dead Sea, Israel-Jordan-Palestine
[40]
54 °C (129 °F)
Tirat Zvi, Israel (then in the British Mandate of Palestine)
21 June 1942
−67.7 °C (−89.9 °F) Measured
Oymyakon, Siberia, Soviet Union
6 February 1933[41][42]
54 °C (129 °F)
Ahvaz Airport, Iran
29 June 2017[43]
−71.2 °C (−96.2 °F) Extrapolated
Oymyakon, Siberia, Soviet Union
26 January 1926[44]
Europe 5,642 m (18,510 feet)
Mount Elbrus, Russian Federation[45]
−28 m (−92 feet)
Caspian Sea shore, Russian Federation[46]
48.0 °C (118.4 °F)
Athens, Greece
(and Elefsina, Greece)
10 July 1977 E
−58.1 °C (−72.6 °F)
Ust-Shchuger, Soviet Union
31 December 1978
North America 6,190.5 m (20,310 feet)
Denali (Mount McKinley), Alaska, United States[47]
−85 m (−279 feet)
Badwater Basin, California, United States[48]
56.7 °C (134 °F)
Greenland Ranch (Furnace Creek), California, United States
10 July 1913
C
−66.1 °C (−87.0 °F)
North Ice, Greenland
9 January 1954F
Oceania 4,884 m (16,024 feet)
Puncak Jaya (Carstensz Pyramid), Indonesia
(compare Mount Wilhelm, Mount Cook and Mount Kosciuszko)[49]
−15 m (−49 feet)
Lake Eyre, South Australia, Australia[50]
50.7 °C (123.3 °F)
Oodnadatta, South Australia, Australia
2 January 1960G
−25.6 °C (−14.1 °F)
Ranfurly, Otago, New Zealand
17 July 1903
South America 6,962 m (22,841 feet)
Aconcagua, Mendoza, Argentina[51]
−105 m (−344 feet)
Laguna del Carbón, Argentina[52]
48.9 °C (120.0 °F)
Rivadavia, Salta Province, Argentina
11 December 1905
−32.8 °C (−27.0 °F)
Sarmiento, Chubut Province, Argentina
1 June 1907
A.^ Height above sea level is the usual choice of definition for elevation. The point farthest away from the centre of the Earth, however, is Chimborazo in Ecuador (6,267 m (20,561 feet)). This is due to the Earth's oblate spheroid shape, with points near the Equator being farther out from the centre than those at the poles.
B.^ All temperatures from the World Meteorological Organization unless noted.
C.^ The former record of 57.7 °C (135.9 °F) recorded at Al 'Aziziyah, Libya on 13 September 1922 was ruled no longer valid by the WMO due to mistakes made in the recording process.[53] The 1913 reading is, however, itself controversial, and a measurement of 54.0 °C (129.2 °F) at Furnace Creek on 30 June 2013 is undisputed, especially since the same or almost the same temperature has been recorded several times in the 21st century in the same and other places.
E.^ Temperatures greater than 50 °C (122 °F) in Spain and Portugal were recorded in 1881, but the standard with which they were measured and the accuracy of the thermometers used are unknown; therefore, they are not considered official. Unconfirmed reports also indicate that a set of Spanish stations may have hit 48.0 °C (118.4 °F) during the 2003 heat wave.[54]
F.^ Greenland is considered by the World Meteorological Organization to be part of WMO region 6 (Europe).[55][56]
G.^ A temperature of 53.1 °C (127.6 °F) was recorded in Cloncurry, Queensland on 16 January 1889 under non-standard exposure conditions and is therefore not considered official.[57]

Remoteness

Poles of inaccessibility

Main article: Pole of inaccessibility

Each continent has its own continental pole of inaccessibility, defined as the place on the continent that is farthest from any ocean. Similarly, each ocean has its own oceanic pole of inaccessibility, defined as the place in the ocean that is farthest from any land.

Continental

If adopted, this would place the final EPIA roughly 130 km (81 mi) closer to the ocean than the point that is currently agreed upon.[58] Coincidentally, EPIA1, or EPIA2, and the most remote of the Oceanic Pole of Inaccessibility (specifically, the point in the South Pacific Ocean that is farthest from land) are similarly remote; EPIA1 is less than 200 km (120 mi) closer to the ocean than the Oceanic Pole of Inaccessibility is to land.

Oceanic

Other places considered the most remote

Bouvet Island

Farthest-apart cities

The pairs of cities (with a population over 100,000) with the greatest distance between them (antipodes) are:[65]

  1. Rosario, Argentina to Xinghua, China: 19,996 km (12,425 mi)[66]
  2. Lu'an, China to Río Cuarto, Argentina: 19,994 km (12,424 mi)[67]
  3. Cuenca, Ecuador to Subang Jaya, Malaysia: 19,989 km (12,421 mi)[68]
  4. Shanghai, China to Concordia, Argentina: 19,984 km (12,417 mi)[69]
  5. Rancagua, Chile to Xi'an, China: 19,972 km (12,410 mi)[70]
  6. Resistencia, Argentina to Rui'an, China: 19,967 km (12,407 mi)[71]
  7. Yantai, China to Tandil, Argentina: 19,965 km (12,406 mi)[72]
  8. Coquimbo, Chile to Lichuan, China: 19,964 km (12,405 mi)[73]
  9. Bandung, Indonesia to Piedecuesta, Colombia: 19,962 km (12,404 mi)[74]
  10. Salamanca, Spain to Lower Hutt, New Zealand: 19,961 km (12,403 mi)[75]

The pair of airports with scheduled flights having the greatest distance between them has been measured to be Sultan Mahmud Badaruddin II International Airport, which serves Palembang, Indonesia, and Benito Salas Airport, which serves Neiva, Colombia, located about 10,819 nautical miles (20,037 km) apart.[76]

Centre

Since the Earth is a spheroid, its centre (the core) is thousands of kilometres beneath its crust. Still, there have been attempts to define various "centrepoints" on the Earth's surface.

Geophysical extremes

Greatest vertical drop

Further information: List of tallest cliffs

Greatest purely vertical drop
1,250 m (4,101 ft)
Mount Thor, Auyuittuq National Park, Baffin Island, Nunavut, Canada (summit elevation 1,675 m (5,495 ft))[77][78]
Greatest nearly vertical drop
1,340 m (4,396 ft)
Trango Towers, Gilgit-Baltistan, Pakistan (summit elevation 6,286 m (20,623 ft))

Subterranean

Further information: Mining § Records, and List of deepest caves

Deepest mine below ground level 4,000 m (13,123 ft)
Mponeng Gold Mine, Gauteng Province, South Africa
Deepest mine below sea level 2,733 m (8,967 ft) below sea level
Kidd Mine, Ontario, Canada
Deepest open-pit mine below ground level 1,200 m (3,937 ft)
Bingham Canyon Mine, Utah, United States
Deepest open-pit mine below sea level 293 m (961 ft) below sea level
Tagebau Hambach, Germany
Deepest cave (measured from the entrance) 2,204 m (7,231 ft)
Veryovkina, Arabika Massif, Abkhazia, Georgia [79]
Deepest pitch (single vertical drop) 1,026 m (3,366 ft)
Tian Xing Cave, China[80]
Deepest borehole 12,261 m (40,226 ft)
Kola Superdeep Borehole, Russia[81]

Greatest oceanic depths

Atlantic Ocean 8,376 m (27,480 ft)[82]
Milwaukee Deep (within the Brownson Deep), Puerto Rico Trench
Arctic Ocean 5,550 m (18,209 ft)[83]
Molloy Deep, Fram Strait
Indian Ocean 7,192 m (23,596 ft)[84]
Sunda Trench
Mediterranean Sea 5,267 m (17,280 ft)
Calypso Deep, Hellenic Trench
Pacific Ocean 10,928 m (35,853 ft)[85]
Challenger Deep, Mariana Trench
[86]
Southern Ocean 7,433.6 m (24,388 ft)[87]
South Sandwich Trench (southernmost portion, at 60°28.46′S 025°32.32′W / 60.47433°S 25.53867°W / -60.47433; -25.53867)

Deepest ice

Ice sheets on land, but having the base below sea level. Places under ice are not considered to be on land.

Bentley Subglacial Trench −2,555 m (−8,383 ft) Antarctica
Trough beneath Jakobshavn Isbræ −1,512 m (−4,961 ft)[88] Greenland, Denmark

Meteorological extremes

Coldest and hottest inhabited places on Earth

Hottest inhabited place Dallol, Ethiopia (Amharic: ዳሎል), whose annual mean temperature was recorded from 1960 to 1966 as 34.4 °C (93.9 °F).[89] The average daily maximum temperature during the same period was 41.1 °C (106.0 °F).[90]
Coldest inhabited place Oymyakon (Russian: Оймяко́н), a rural locality (selo) in Oymyakonsky District of the Sakha Republic, the Russian Federation, has the coldest monthly mean, with −46.4 °C (−51.5 °F) the average temperature in January, the coldest month. Eureka, Nunavut, Canada has the lowest annual mean temperature at −19.7 °C (−3.5 °F).[91]
The South Pole and some other places in Antarctica are colder and are populated year-round, but almost everyone stays less than a year and could be considered visitors, not inhabitants.

Ground temperatures

Temperatures measured directly on the ground may exceed air temperatures by 30 to 50 °C.[92] A ground temperature of 84 °C (183.2 °F) has been recorded in Port Sudan, Sudan.[93] A ground temperature of 93.9 °C (201 °F) was recorded in Furnace Creek, Death Valley, California, United States on 15 July 1972; this may be the highest natural ground surface temperature ever recorded.[94] The theoretical maximum possible ground surface temperature has been estimated to be between 90 and 100 °C for dry, darkish soils of low thermal conductivity.[95]

Satellite measurements of ground temperature taken between 2003 and 2009, taken with the MODIS infrared spectroradiometer on the Aqua satellite, found a maximum temperature of 70.7 °C (159.3 °F), which was recorded in 2005 in the Lut Desert, Iran. The Lut Desert was also found to have the highest maximum temperature in 5 of the 7 years measured (2004, 2005, 2006, 2007 and 2009). These measurements reflect averages over a large region and so are lower than the maximum point surface temperature.[92]

Satellite measurements of the surface temperature of Antarctica, taken between 1982 and 2013, found a coldest temperature of −93.2 °C (−136 °F) on 10 August 2010, at 81°48′S 59°18′E / 81.8°S 59.3°E / -81.8; 59.3. Although this is not comparable to an air temperature, it is believed that the air temperature at this location would have been lower than the official record lowest air temperature of −89.2 °C.[96][97]

Extreme points by region

Afro-Eurasia

The Americas

Oceania

Antarctica

Arctic

See also

Notes

  1. ^ A 1995 realignment of the International Date Line Archived 28 June 2006 at the Wayback Machine moved all of Kiribati to the Asian side of the Date Line, causing Caroline Island to be the easternmost point. If the previous Date Line were followed, the easternmost point would be Tafahi Niuatoputapu, in the Tonga Islands.
  2. ^ By comparison, the meridian that passes through the Great Pyramid of Giza in Egypt (31°08'3.69"E) is 855 km (531 mi) shorter.
  3. ^ A geodesic is defined as the shortest route between any two points on the surface of the Earth, as measured along the surface of the Earth (rather than through the Earth's interior); they are "straight lines" only in the sense that they are plotted on an idealized two-dimensional surface of the three-dimensional Earth, neglecting changes in surface elevation. On an idealized spherical model of the Earth, geodesics are equivalent to great-circle distances measured along the arcs of great circles.
  4. ^ The elevation given here was established by a GPS survey in February 2016. The survey was carried out by a team from the French Research Institute for Development, working in cooperation with the Ecuadorian Military Geographic Institute.[12]

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