Monday, December 31, 2007

Happy New Year !!

ANTARCTICA FUN FACTS -- Ice cores drilled into the ice of Antarctica exhibit the presence of microbial life at all levels. Recent electron scanning microscope studies of these micro-fossils have revealed numerous forms that are not immediately identifiable. Russian scientists have been able to revive and culture bacteria, yeast, fungi, and other microbes found in ice cores that carbon date to more than 200,000 years old! This is reminiscent of the bacteria that were found surviving in hibernation on the U.S. Surveyor moon lander that was retrieved by the Apollo astronauts, having outlasted the airless and hostile lunar environment for almost three years! Clearly, microbial life "goes on and on and on..." The implications of this ability of microbial life to be "long-suffering" are certainly provocative in terms of biologic viability in the extreme environments beyond Earth. (Source: Life in Extreme Environments: Antarctica)

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