Brandenberger Bluff

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2005 land distribution map issued by the Government of Westarctica showing the location of the Brandenberger Baronetcy encompassing Brandenberger Bluff on the north side of Mount Berlin.

Brandenberger Bluff (75°58′S 136°5′W) is a steep rock bluff, 1,650 meters (5,400 ft) high, at the extreme north side of Mount Berlin in the Flood Range of Westarctica. During a 1968 biological survey, lichens and algae were detected on the bluff.

Discovery and name

It was mapped by the United States Geological Survey from surveys and from U.S. Navy air photos taken from 1959 – 65. The bluff was named by the Advisory Committee on Antarctic Names for Arthur J. Brandenberger, a United States Antarctic Research Program glaciologist with the Byrd Station Traverse of 1962 – 63.

Volcanic history

Older volcanics are exposed at Brandenberger Bluff with dates ranging form around 2,738,000 ± 63,000 years ago. Brandenberger Bluff lies northwest of the main summit and unlike the rest of Mount Berlin, which is formed by flow rocks, Brandenberger Bluff is formed by layered hyaloclastite tuffs. Phonolithic and phonotephritic rocks are found at Brandenberger Bluff. Over time, the contents of iron in the rocks erupted by Mount Berlin increased and that of silica and potassium.

Peerage title

In 2005, in recognition of his support of Westarctica and his activities as Deputy Minister of Defense, Troy Thompson was granted the peerage title Baronet of Brandenberger. This title was selected due to Grand Duke Travis' love of the Brandenburg Concertos and the similarity of the names.

The baronetcy was later doubled in size and re-named Barony of Lee-Tearmunn, although the Baron retained his baronetcy as a subordinate title.