That reading was almost reached again this year at a nearby location when the mercury reached minus 135.3 degrees on July 31.
The discoveries were made after the U.S. National Snow and Ice Data Center analyzed thermal satellite images that pinpointed the chilliest spots in two of the many frigid pockets within the heart of Antarctica.
The coldest daily temperature on the planet is recorded most of the year at Russia’s Vostok research base, where the official planetary record low of minus 128.6 degrees occurred on July 21, 1983.
Ice scientist Ted Scambos of the Colorado-based center cautions Guinness not to publish the unofficial new low in their record books just yet because further research could come across an even colder reading.
Thermal satellite observations revealed last year that Iran’s Lut Desert had the world’s all-time hottest temperature in 2005 when the mercury soared to an utterly astounding 159.3 degrees Fahrenheit.
That means the atmosphere has seen a swing of almost 300 degrees in temperature between the hottest and coldest spots on the planet.
Graphic: National Ice & Snow Data Center