Saturday, February 4, 2012

Drilling Stops at Lake Vostok

Lake Vostok, a subglacial lake in East Antarctica
The director of Russia's Antarctic program, Valery Lukin,told Nature that drilling at Antarctica's Lake Vostok stopped on Feb. 5 at a depth of 12,200 feet (3,720.47 meters). The operation had to be halted so that the research team could make it off the ice and onto the last flight before the beginning of the Antarctic winter season. The drilling team left by aircraft on Feb. 6, and will have to wait until the next austral summer begins in December to try again.
Russian drilling station Vostok
Lake Vostok has been hidden under the miles-deep Antarctic ice sheet for some 25 million years. What will scientists find when they drill down to the lake's pristine waters? We'll have to wait until the summer thaw to find out. In the meantime, be afraid. Be very afraid!

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