The Institute

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French Polar Institute Paul-Emile Victor. Resources and expertise agency for polar science research.

Pointage d'une étoile sur la plateforme d'astronomie à ConcordThe French Polar Institute  is the resources agency for furthering French research in the polar regions. The French Polar Institute makes available human, logistical and technical resources and funding, but also sets the legal framework necessary for developing national polar and subpolar scientific research.

The French Polar Institute headquarters are in Brest. Its permanent teams, around 50 strong, MarionDufresne-Science-ProgrammeBGH-2009-IPEV (8)manage the resources and facilities required for organizing scientific expeditions, including the six French stations established in the polar regions (one in the Arctic, two in the Antarctic and three in the Subantarctic islands), the polar vessel Astrolabe and the oceanographic ship Marion Dufresne.

  •  50 permanent staff
  • Contractual staff recruited for summer campaigns and winterings
  • Civilian Volunteers in Technical Assistance (VCAT) reArc-GwendalSTEPHAN-IPEV-22cruited each year for winters
  • 6 scientific stations: Arctic (1), Antarctica (2) and in the French Austral Islands (3)
  • € 28 million annual budget, 90% is allocated to scientific, technical and logistics activities in the field.
  • Ant-DumontDUrville-Equipe-BrunoEtMarieCUSA-2014-IPEV-20 An oceanographic ship: the Marion Dufresne
  • A polar ship: Astrolabe
  • 80 average scientific programs supported and implemented each year
  • An average 10 oceanographic campaigns for 217 days chartering of the Marion Dufresne


In January 1992, the French Institute for Polar Research and Technology (IFRTP) was born from the fusion of the research mission of the French Southern and Antarctic Lands (TAAF) and the French Polar Expeditions organization (EPF). Established at Brest in 1993, IFRTP was extended in January 2002 for a further 12 years under the name Institut polaire français Paul-Émile Victor (IPEV), then again for 12 years in January 2014.

For further information: Amicale des Missions Australes Et Polaires Françaises: and the TAAF site:


40 personnels permanents
6 stations scientifiques
80 programmes scientifiques