Antarctic Lake Holds Life—Under 50 Feet of Ice
Long-buried lake teeming with bacteria
By Rob Quinn, Newser Staff
Posted Nov 28, 2012 2:48 AM CST
The lake has been sealed off by Antarctic ice for thousands of years.   (AP Photo/Robin E. Bell--Lamont Doherty Earth Observatory, New York)

(Newser) – Hopes of finding life elsewhere in our solar system have been boosted by a find in one of the least hospitable places on the planet. Researchers who drilled into Lake Vida, a salty lake buried under a 50-foot-thick sheet of ice in Antarctica, have found that its oxygen-depleted water is teeming with microbial life despite having been completely sealed off for 2,800 years, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Researchers believe the lake's energy is being regularly replenished, possibly from chemical reactions, despite the lack of external sources. "By seeing what the boundaries of life are on Earth, that helps us when we go out and look for examples elsewhere," one of the researchers says. "Years ago, we never would have thought to look for life in the sub-surface of Mars, and now we have examples on Earth that things can live down there."

More From Newser
My Take on This Story
To report an error on this story,
notify our editors.
Life Found in Antarctic Lake Under 50 Feet of Ice is...
1%
2%
33%
1%
63%
1%
Show results without voting
You Might Like
Comments
Showing 3 of 15 comments
1492
Nov 28, 2012 7:35 PM CST
An angler would want to drop a line and a hook.
DalaiLama
Nov 28, 2012 1:56 PM CST
But I understand there is no life there on a Sunday night.
Rammrodd
Nov 28, 2012 9:10 AM CST
Let's melt that ice and uncover those hidden resources which may benefit mankind.