Scientists in Antarctica uncovered a mysterious lake buried under more than 3,500 feet of ice after spending approximately two days drilling into Mercer Subglacial Lake, according to the Subglacial Antarctic Lakes Scientific Access (SALSA). This team of researchers — which includes 45 scientists, drillers and other staff members — sent an instrument down a borehole, capturing rare footage of the body of water which is “twice the size of Manhattan.” Next, they’ll lower a remotely operated vehicle down the hole for more extensive measurements. Read more for two additional videos and information.


“We don’t know what we’ll find. We’re just learning, it’s only the second time that this has been done. Part of the drilling process involves sampling the drill water to test its cleanliness. The water has been tested twice thus far, and both tests showed the water was ‘as clean as filtered water can get. The drill water is run through filters that catch 99.9% of bacteria and particles,” said SALSA team members.