Web edition: February 1, 2013
Three research teams from around the world have been drilling deep into the ice that covers Antarctica in search of liquid water. It’s not because they’re thirsty. These scientists are hoping instead to find what types of life may be able to survive extreme conditions. Any aquatic life in a buried lake would exist in the cold and dark — and without access to Earth’s atmosphere for at least thousands (and maybe millions) of years. On January 28, the American team became the first to reach one of those buried lakes and retrieve very clean samples of its water for testing.
And the bonanza: They found cells!