Discoveries in Antarctica have shed light on the mysteries of human evolution on Earth. Earth's second stargate was discovered when O'Neill and Carter were accidentally transported to a previously inactive gate during a power overload and malfunction. The gate was buried deep in a crevasse about 50 miles outside of the McMurdo Base in Antarctica. The "beta gate" was officially decommissioned and sealed after its recovery from Antarctica, it was stored for a time at Area 51, and was eventually put back into service at the SGC before being destroyed by Anubis's weapon.
In Antarctica, the White Rock Research Station was set up near the site where the Antarctic gate had been discovered. Dr. Michaels, Dr. Osbourne, and Dr. Woods were among the scientists based at the station, but four years of research into the origin of the gate provided little information until the discovery of Ayiana, a woman, human in appearance, who had been frozen in the ice and who miraculously revived. It had previously been believed that human life in the galaxy had been transported to other planets from Earth by the Goa'uld, however Daniel theorized that the Giza gate, used by the Goa'uld and buried approximately 5000 years ago, had been relatively recent by comparison, and that the Antarctic gate, which had been buried long before, had only become active again when a crevasse had formed in the glacial ice. Ice core samples indicated that both Ayiana and the Antarctic gate predate the Antarctic glacier, making them at least 3 million years old. Since humans are believed to have evolved on Earth between 800,000 and 900,000 years ago, this evidence suggests that Ayiana could come from a far more ancient race. If she is one stage of the development of the Ancients, she could be the evidence that human beings evolved long before previously thought, and perhaps not even originally on Earth.
When O'Neill accessed the knowledge of the Ancients through the Ancient repository on P3X-439, he spoke the words, "Terra Atlantus, subo glaciuse," indicating that the key to the Lost City of Atlantis would be found under the ice of Antarctica. Near the location where the beta stargate had been discovered, SG-1 found an Ancient outpost buried beneath the ice. As the Prometheus, under the command of General Hammond, and a fleet of Earth's F-302s, led by Cameron Mitchell, engaged Anubis's fleet in a desperate battle above Antarctica, O'Neill activated the Ancient defense weapon within the outpost, releasing swarms of glowing energy drones that destroyed Anubis and saved Earth.
Following the discovery of the Ancient outpost, the 12 nations that claim shared jurisdiction in Antarctica engaged in uneasy negotiations regarding control of the site. The Antarctic Treaty had been established to promote scientific research in the interest of all mankind, and Article 1 states that there can be no establishment of any military base or testing of any weapons. Dr. Elizabeth Weir was called upon to use her negotiating skills to handle the various international claims on the site and to supervise the research being conducted at the facility. The outpost was too small to be the Lost City of the Ancients which SG-1 had sought, but the research being conducted at the site did eventually lead to the discovery of the Lost City of Atlantis in the Pegasus Galaxy.
Cross Reference: Ancients, Ancient Defense Weapon, Ancient Outpost, Atlantis, Ayiana, Adam Banks, Beta Stargate, Lost City, Francine Michaels, Cameron Mitchell, Dr. Osbourne, Prometheus, Redmond, Elizabeth Weir, White Rock Research Station, Norman Woods
Episode Reference: Solitudes, Frozen, Lost City, Avalon