Russian scientists obtained unique samples from the depths of a glacier in Antarctica

Russian scientists obtained unique samples from the depths of a glacier in Antarctica

The press service of the Arctic and Antarctic Research Institute reported that the institution's specialists received unique finds raised from a depth of over 3.5 km in the central part of Antarctica. They had samples of mineral inclusions at their disposal, which are important for understanding the geological structure of the sixth continent of the Earth.

Outcrops of rocks in Antarctica are observed in small numbers only in the coastal zone. Therefore, any materials from the continental part are of great interest to science.

"The glacio-drilling detachment of the 69th Russian Antarctic Expedition has completed seasonal work at the Vostok Antarctic station. In just a month and a half, 76 meters of ice core were raised to the surface from a depth range of 3534-3610 meters. The top 4 meters of the resulting ice core are represented by ancient atmospheric ice, which is up to 1.2 million years old. At a depth of more than 3,538 meters, the core is composed of lake ice, which has grown on the base of the glacier from the water of the subglacial Lake Vostok," the message says.

Scientists have discovered a large mineral inclusion in ice samples lifted from a depth of 3,538.9 meters. Its size is 3x6 cm, which exceeds all the inclusions of subglacial rocks and bottom sediments of the lake previously found in the core.

Further studies on gas and isotope analyses of ice cores will be conducted at the AANI Climate and Environmental Change Laboratory. The study of the obtained samples of mineral inclusions will be carried out jointly with VNIIOCEANOLOGY.

Scientists admit that the research will provide new information about the composition of the microbiota of the subglacial environment near the shoreline of Lake Vostok.
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