In 2020, Japanese scientists drilled the bottom in the most remote and hard-to-reach region of the Pacific Ocean and lifted layers of soil between 4.5 and 100 million years old.
We are talking about the Ocean Pole of Inaccessibility or Point Nemo — the region that is as distant as possible from all five continents. The nearest «habitable zone» is the International Space Station, flying at an altitude of 400 km above sea level, and the nearest land is the uninhabited Ducie Atoll at 2,688 km.
The pole is the conditional center of the South Pacific Gyre — a system of currents that, under the influence of the trade winds and the rotation of the planet, are twisted counterclockwise.
Due to the difference in temperature and pressure, water masses inside the cycle
Point Nemo is interesting for studying marine microbiology and the geological history of the planet. Due to the absence of living creatures and dust winds from land, the bottom of the Pacific Gyre is very slowly covered with sedimentary deposits. Thus, the soil, several million years old, lies practically on the surface.
According to various estimates, the bowels of the Earth
But can living organisms exist in the most unfavorable conditions?
It turned out that microbes exist even here! At the same time, given the age of sedimentary rocks in 101 million years, the bacteria found turned out to be the oldest inhabitants of the planet.
Scientists made two important conclusions: microbes are able to survive in the most inhospitable areas of the ocean, and can also hibernate for millions of years, and only suitable conditions are needed to return to life.
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