Vostok – Lake Under Antarctic Ice
Some Russian researchers have finally managed to penetrate the last Antarctic ice barrier to reveal the mysteries of a unique subglacial lake in the world, Vostok, which has been isolated here for 20 million years, according to repubblica.it
After not less than thirty years of drilling, Russian scientists finally managed to get past the antarctic ice layer and reveal the secrets of the mysterious Vostok subglacial lake. This mystery, over 20 million years old, has remained isolated under the ice layer four kilometers thick from the South Pole. This sub-glacial lake, measuring approximately 250 kilometers in length and 50 in width, and having a depth of 1,000 meters, is the largest subglove lake under the thick ice layer of the South Pole.Researchers seem to have “stopped dredging at a depth of 3,768 meters when they reached the surface of the sub-glacial lake,” a source close to the team of experts said. Explorers hope the lake will offer them the opportunity to discover unknown life forms and show how life evolved before the frost.
In fact, the discovery of some hidden lakes in Antarctica in 1990 has since the enthusiasm of researchers from everywhere. Some thought that the top and bottom ice sheets created a hydrostatic seal over the surface area, which prevented water and any water between the interior and exterior of these water sources. Moreover, researchers hope that Lake Vostok could also provide some clues as to how the conditions are on Mars or the Jupiter satellite in Europe. Many specialists say that Jupiter’s satellite has “hidden” water under a thick layer of ice – just like the Vostok Lake.Scientists believe that in both cases water is kept in liquid state due to heat from geothermal sources.
For that very reason, the Vostok Lake exploration project was pursued with great interest both by NASA and by the Russian Space Agency.
Numerous ice samples have been extracted from the ice cap from different depths and are to be analyzed by several laboratories around the world.
A true adventure, however, is just beginning, because it reveals the mysteries of the lake, the environment surrounding it, and its anomalies, could be a very important moment for the world of science.
The dangers of the lost world
Lake Vostok could prove a true end of the planet, an unknown and autonomous world within Terra, remaining 20 million years ago. According to some assumptions, the water cycle in nature could be completely under the ice layer with weather phenomena, rains or storms. And, of course, there are many bacteria, which create quite a lot of problems, because our world and the forgotten world of Vostok Lake may not be compatible. A pathogen from Terra could contaminate and exterminate in a few minutes the biology of the lake. Just as a pathogen from the lake, unknown to our environment and potentially dangerous, could cause unpredictable problems for the entire planet. For this reason, during the drilling, the Russian team was very careful to avoid any contamination. The water from the lake to be analyzed will be picked up by creating an orifice. In fact, just cutting the ice to create the hole will be the most delicate moment, and the bacteria in our environment will come into contact with a mysterious universe, hidden for millions of years.
Secrets from the past
Scientists have found that in the vicinity of the lake there are a number of magnetic anomalies, with variations of over 1,000 nano-tesla recorded on the surface of Lake Vostok. Normally, magnetic variations between 500-600 nano-tesla are recorded near the volcanoes, and in the usual areas variations are much lower. In the case of Lake Vostok, magnetic variations are very high, which has stirred the curiosity of scientists and research has continued.
Moreover, in 2001 an oval structure was discovered, which resembles an entrance that was dug in the mountain. From a legal point of view, it is impossible for a man’s hand to have built an underground structure, taking into account the provisions of the Antarctic International Treaty. However, there are voices claiming that a secret military base is right next to Lake Vostok. It is said that, towards the end of the Second World War, the Nazis sent their forces to the South Pole and began building a base at Lake Vostok. According to the German naval archives, a few months after Germany surrendered, German submarine U-530 arrived at the South Pole in Kiel port. Crew members built a room in the ice cap, where they seem to have stored some boxes of remnants of the Third Reich, including Hitler’s secret files.