Science/Tech

Water From The Ice Age Discovered In Maldives

Some 20,000 years ago, the Ice Age that cloaked our planet and lasted for around 100,000 years was nearing its tail end, called the Last Glacial Maximum. As some sort of last hurrah before ending, the ice covered almost all of North America, Northern Europe and Asia.

We now look at this period of our planet’s history through books and other types of media, while scientists and researchers look at it through the lens of seafloor sediments or coral fossils.

Just recently, a team of researchers and ocean scientists discovered something that far outweighs the value any history/science book or fossil made up of corals can give: actual seawater, untouched and aged 20,000 years old.

Squeezed from an ancient rock formation found in the Indian Ocean, the researchers were able to find the water while drilling sediment core samples from limestone deposits. The team then sliced the sample rocks they took and squeezed moisture or any remnants of it out from the pores.

Testing the composition of these water samples, the researchers were then taken by surprise: the samples were incredibly salty and everything about them screamed out of place and most likely untouched. After several more tests, the researchers then came to a conclusion: the water samples came from a time when the sea was saltier, colder and more chlorinated. Per the researchers, this type of composition is the same one that’s thought to make up the water during the Last Glacial Maximum.

"From all indications, it looks pretty clear we now have an actual piece of this 20,000-year-old ocean," said lead study author Clara Blättler, an assistant professor of geophysical sciences at the University of Chicago.

If the findings were true, then this marks the first time the modern world has found a direct link to oceans from the past and how they reacted to their surroundings. Per the researchers, further studies could then lead to a better understanding of our world, and how it’s changing with the times.

Findings from the study are published in the July 2019 edition of the journal Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta.

Southern Ocean We may all be in trouble if the Southern Ocean reaches it CO2 capacity. Mertie CC BY 2.0

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