Our Planet

Strange Places

 

There are a lot of strange places on this Earth of ours. One of the strangest is the bottom of the ocean. Being on the bottom of the ocean, or even underwater in some areas, is like being on another world.

 

Lake Vida is a lake that is under nineteen meters of ice, approximately 62.5 feet, under Antarctica. It has been sealed off for at least 2,800 years. But how come this is not a frozen lake since everything above it is frozen? The answer to this question is simple, the lake is seven times saltier than sea water and that keeps it from freezing.

 

The Antarctic has 70 known lakes of this type. Scientists are very interested in this type of lake, because they think that there may be a chance that they may find something similar on Mars.

 

Just imagine, this lake has been cut off from the rest of the planet, even the atmosphere for all of these years. It could contain extinct life or maybe life that is evolving differently. I am not talking about intelligent life, but tiny fish like life. It is also true that 2,800 years is not much time in evolutionary terms.

 

Tanzania is a country located in Africa. It's size is 945,087 sq km. There is a very unique volcano in this country, so unique that it may be the only one of it's type, I can't be sure. There is a mountain called Ol Doinyo Lengai.

 

The mountain is actually a volcano. I think we all know how volcanoes work. When they erupt, they spew out lava and smoke, along with other particles that land on the earth below. This is not exactly true of our Tanzanian volcano. This volcano spews out lava that hardens in midair and shatters with it hits the earth like a piece of glass.

 

The lava coming out of this volcano is of the natrocarbonatit natrocarbonatite type verses the more common basalt type lava. It's temperature at eruption is only about 1,000 degrees Fahrenheit, which is 50% cooler than most volcanoes.

Kemo D. (a.k.a. no.7)

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