Antarctic scientists are going to drill one of the most isolated lakes on Earth
At a depth of 1,200 meters under the Antarctic ice is Lake Mercer subglacial reservoir formed thousands of years ago and long since separated from the rest of the world. Research Lake project and its mysterious contents should begin later this month. The so-called Subglacial Antarctic Lakes Scientific Access, or SALSA, a project aimed at finding new information about the subglacial lakes of Antarctica. It is known that there are at least 400 such.
For the next two months SALSA scientists will explore one of the largest subglacial lake in the west of Antarctica - Lake Mercer. For this, scientists have been drilled to a depth of 1200 meters ice using 60-inch drilled with hot water. In addition to the extraction of water and mud samples, scientists have also deployed a remote-controlled device - a first for the sub-glacial lake.
Isolated world beneath the ice
SALSA team hopes to learn more about cold alien environments: how to ice-covered tanks would appear the hot water; as it could survive a life in such a harsh environment; environmental factors, which formed the lake; changing the state of the Antarctic ice sheet. It is important to note that this mission could lay the theoretical foundation for future expeditions to the ice-covered moons of Jupiter and Saturn, which might be hiding life. Mercer Lake was first discovered by satellite over a decade ago, but never investigated people. Subglacial lake has a size of about 160 square kilometers. However, the depth of its small - 10-15 meters. The water in the lake fluctuates near the freezing point, but never hardens due to the enormous pressure exerted on it a pile of ice. Lake Mercer, likely formed about 10,000 years ago.
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