South Africa maintains bases at Antarctica and on Marion and Gough Islands.
Managed and administered by the Department of Environmental Affairs (DEA).
At the Antarctic base, SANAE IV, the field of research is varied. Apart from meteorological observations, there are programmes, which provide for upper air research (e.g. cosmic rays) and others again, which cover the earth sciences (e.g. geology). At Gough Island meteorological observations are made and Marion Island is a meteorological station with research programmes being undertaken in the fields of oceanography, biology and geology.
Relief voyages to replenish supplies and to exchange personnel take place annually. These voyages are undertaken by the DEA research and supply vessel, the mv S. A. Agulhas II.
Annual departure times to the various bases are usually as follows: