Research

Scientists are going to drill 1 million years old ice

Our planet hides many secrets and secrets andsometimes the expression "get to the truth" scientists use is not in a figurative sense. Indeed, in the bowels of the Earth there is a mass of information that can be extremely useful. And sometimes in order to get this information, it is necessary to create extremely ambitious projects. For example, as The Guardian reports, a team of scientists is going to drill ice for 1 million years by 4 years. But why do they need it?

The ice of Antarctica hides many secrets

Why drill ancient ice?

Scientists from the Australian AntarcticEcological and environmental units (AAD) believe that ice in Antarctica can contain important information about the past of the planet and can help predict climate thanks to gas bubbles that froze there as if in a trap.

This mission, which we will begin in the comingfor several years, it will solve several climate problems at once, ”said Tas van Ommen, one of the ideologists of the project. The ice, whose age reaches more than 1 million years, is the object of several international research projects. And we hope to find tiny bubbles there that have stored data on the ancient atmosphere of our planet. These tiny bubbles are real time capsules.

Scientists have already introduced the drill model, whichwill have to help experts in their research. The drill bit is made according to patented technology and it contains stainless steel, as well as an alloy of aluminum, bronze and titanium. According to scientists, the drill is able to work without problems at a temperature of minus 55 degrees Celsius.

Drilling rig (which weighs, by the way500 tons) is mobile and will be able to independently move over short distances. Nevertheless, it will be delivered to the ice continent in parts, after which the unit will be assembled at a distance of 1200 from the coast. Drilling itself should begin in 2021, and the process will take a total of 4 years. But why so long? You can express your assumptions in the comments and in our chat in Telegram. It will be interesting to know your opinion.

See also: What is hidden under the ice of Antarctica?

The answer to this question is quite simple. The fact is that just “drilling a hole” is not enough. Since during the drilling process, the ice breaks and breaks, and scientists need to get as little damaged samples as possible in order to study the composition of the air bubbles enclosed inside. Scientists are primarily interested in carbon dioxide. Namely, how its percentage in the ambient air changed over time.

This photo is not from Antarctica, but bubbles like frozen in ice might look something like this

According to some sources, about 1 million years agoThe earth has “moved” from a cycle of the ice age of 40,000 years between “freezing periods” to a cycle of 100,000 years. Scientists believe that the carbon dioxide content is quite a strong influence on these processes. As many of you have probably guessed, the processes of carbon dioxide accumulation associated with industrial production are currently a very serious problem. Therefore, it is important for scientists to understand whether carbon dioxide emissions into the atmosphere will have long-term consequences today. Of course, studying the composition of the ancient atmosphere will also help to develop measures to prevent environmental disasters.