Everest Altitude

New measurement: Mount Everest altitude is about to change!

There is no doubt that Mount Everest is and will remain the highest mountain in the world. The second in the ranking, K2, is almost 250 meters lower. However, the exact measurement of Mount Everest’s altitude may change. Last May, scientists climbed this peak to measure the current height. The altitude of 8.848 meters (29,028 ft) is generally considered to be the correct one. This figure came from a survey in the middle of the 20th century but purists may discuss this altitude…

From 9.204 to 8.844 meters!

In the middle of the 19th century, a British team was the first to suggest an altitude for Mount Everest: 30,200 feet, i.e. 9,204 meters. A very approximate measurement! The methods of that time were not very precise and the distance which separated the scientists from the mountain was too significant. A few years later, the figure has been refined. Always by the Brits. The new altitude was then set at 8,839 meters. It was then in 1856 and this altitude is (almost) still relevant today. In 1955, Indians specified the measurement at 8,848 meters, which remained the figure generally used.

GPS helps!

In 1999, technology was modernized and the use of GPS confirmed that the rock was located at 8,850 meters and that the layer of snow and ice raised the summit by about 1 meter. Many official maps around the world use this altitude. In 2005, the Chinese revised this figure down a few meters but the altitude obtained (8,844 meters) is rarely used. Last year, the Nepalese wanted to measure the altitude of Everest, in particular to see if the powerful earthquake of 2015 had not affected the location of the summit. A team went there, but the results of this study are yet to be known.

A new measure…

A few weeks ago, a group of Chinese surveyors reached the summit of Mount Everest to – again – measure the famous mountain. Several measurements were taken the previous weeks from different spots around the mountain range. Chinese authorities announced that it would take 2 or 3 months before the results are known.

Learn more about: Mount Everest Mountain Elevation

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