This is the stuff of classic Science Fiction. Except it’s real. 13,000 feet below the Antarctic ice sheets lies Lake Vostok – the third largest lake by volume on the entire planet. It has been buried down there for 20 million years. Russian scientists, (one of them undoubtedly a beautiful woman unless science fiction has steered me wrong,) have finally, probably, drilled to its surface through all that ice in the culmination of a 20 year project. This sort of thing is unbelievably awesome.
So far we have found life everywhere there has been liquid water. Even places it was previously deemed impossible. It was assumed for ages that nothing could live at the bottom at sea but they finally went there and discovered a brilliant array of truly, utterly, weird and cool looking fish. If we can find life in Lake Vostok after it has been sealed below stunningly thick sheets of ice for 20 million years, then it seems pretty damn likely that we will find life inside Jupiter’s moon Europa and Saturn’s moon Enceladus. Aliens!
As you can tell, I am pretty damned excited about this. What can be down there? Most likely it will be a lot of weird looking fish. Which will be fascinating. I am hoping that there is a whole civilisation down there like at the end ofThe Abyss
. Which is not so likely. Or possibly a giant sentient creature that feeds off all the fish and has lived there for millions of years. Or a frozen UFO with creatures inside like in The Thing
. Or, or… There are so many possibilities and cool possible story plots my mind is being boggled.
Who knows? It’s going to be cool finding out though.