The Clinton Herald, Clinton, Iowa

Lifestyles

December 13, 2012

Team probes for life in lake beneath 2 miles of Antarctic ice

(Continued)

LONDON —

First they'll lower a sterile ultraviolet lamp down to irradiate any life around the edges of the hole, Hill said in a briefing in October. Then, they'll send down a probe with 24 canisters to collect water samples from different depths.

Finally, a sediment corer will be dropped down to recover a length of sediment from the lake bed. By analyzing a column of sediment, scientists can tell whether the ice sheet has retreated in the past, because of the presence or not of fossilized marine organisms in the silt.

"We'll probably reach the lake around Sunday, retract the drill by Monday and start deploying the instruments late Monday or Tuesday," Hill said.

As soon as the first probe returns to the surface, researchers will be able to study some of the samples to gauge whether life was found, said Hill. The rest will be sent back by sea to Britain, where they'll arrive about May for study in laboratories across the country, with the first scientific papers likely by late 2013 or early 2014, he said.

If conditions allow, they'll re-drill the hole and lower a duplicate set of all the instruments down. Hill said that the five-day weather forecast predicts low winds and some cloud cover. Temperatures in the Antarctic summer are currently around minus 18 degrees Celsius (0 degrees Fahrenheit), falling to minus 35 degrees with wind-chill, he said.

Lakes exist deep below the Antarctic surface because the pressure exerted by thousands of meters of ice drives down the freezing point of water. Lake Ellsworth is one of at least 387 known sub-glacial Antarctic lakes.

The drilling program is the culmination of an ambition dating back 16 years, when the project's principle scientist, Martin Siegert, a glaciologist now at the University of Edinburgh, began searching through radio echo-sounding data to uncover Antarctic lakes, according to Hill.

Text Only
Lifestyles
  • The virtues of lying

    Two computational scientists set out recently to simulate the effects of lying in a virtual human population. Their results, published in the Proceedings of the Royal Society B, show that lying is essential for the growth of a cohesive social network.

    July 31, 2014

  • The Clinton Herald Jim Miller Low-cost, free cellphone options for seniors DEAR SAVVY SENIOR: What are the cheapest cell phone options available today to seniors living on a shoestring budget? I only need it for occasional calls. — Seldom Calling SeniorDEAR SELDOM: For financially challenged seniors who only want a cell pho

    July 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • Off to market: Fulton Buy-Way yard sales are Aug. 8 and 9

    Flea market fans and bargain shoppers will once again make their way to Fulton.

    July 31, 2014

  • School supplies offered at events

    With students going back to school soon, Clinton families will have two opportunities to receive free back-to-school supplies.

    July 30, 2014

  • CATS-DOGS281.jpg Where cats are more popular than dogs in the U.S.-and all over the world

    We all know there are only two types of people in the world: cat people and dog people. But data from market research firm Euromonitor suggest that these differences extend beyond individual preferences and to the realm of geopolitics: it turns out there are cat countries and dog countries, too.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • YWCA offers lifeguard training

    CLINTON — The YWCA will offer lifeguard training in August.The course will be held from Aug. 4 to 10 at the YWCA. This 30-hour class will meet from 5 to 9 p.m. for four weeknights and from 1 to 5 p.m. Saturday. A possibility of adding a class from 1

    July 25, 2014

  • GPS race Teams race to complete challenges THOMSON, Ill. — A challenge in August will pit teams against each other to complete a series of challenges.The event will begin at 9 a.m. Aug. 16 at the Upper Mississippi River National Wildlife and Fish Refuge in Thomson. Armed with GPS units, teams

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • Habitat for Humanity hosts fundraiser

    CLINTON — Habitat for Humanity will host a fundraiser in Thomson, Illinois.The Clinton County group will showcase Laid Back Luau from 5 to 8 p.m. Friday, Aug. 8, at Heirloom Cafe in Thomson. The event will feature games, prizes, music train rides for

    July 25, 2014

  • Fire departments undergo grain bin rescue training OMAHA — The Goose Lake and Lost Nation Volunteer Fire Departments each have received lifesaving grain bin rescue equipment through a donation from Farm Credit Services of America.Goose Lake received its equipment July 14 and Lost Nation on July 15. E

    July 24, 2014

  • ADM donates $75K for fire boat purchase CLINTON — Archer Daniels Midland Company has donated $75,000 to the city of Clinton for a new fire and rescue boat for the Clinton Fire Department.The boat will help the fire department respond to fires, administer emergency medical services and resp

    July 24, 2014

Front page
Clinton Herald Photos


Browse, buy and submit pictures with our photo site.

Poll

Should the city of Clinton appeal the open records violation ruling that will cost taxpayers $40,600?

Yes
No
     View Results
AP Video
Olympics 2014
Featured Comment
Featured Ads
Blue Zones Project
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.