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Psychic Paranormal ForumTheories, Mysteries and ScienceAncient Mysteries & Lost Civilizations › Biologists find weird cave life that may be 50,000 years old
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Owlscrying
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Biologists find weird cave life that may be 50,000 years old
02/18/17 at 12:27:24
 
In a Mexican cave system so beautiful and hot that it is called both Fairyland and hell, scientists have discovered life trapped in crystals that could be 50,000 years old.

The bizarre and ancient microbes were found dormant in caves in Naica, Mexico, and were able to exist by living on minerals such as iron and manganese, said Penelope Boston, head of NASA's Astrobiology Institute. .

"It's super life," said Boston, who presented the discovery Friday at the American Association for the Advancement of Science conference in Boston.

If confirmed, the find is yet another example of how microbes can survive in extremely punishing conditions on Earth.

Though it was presented at a science conference and was the result of nine years of work, the findings haven't yet been published in a scientific journal and haven't been peer reviewed. Boston planned more genetic tests for the microbes she revived both in the lab and on site.

The life forms 40 different strains of microbes and even some viruses are so weird that their nearest relatives are still 10 percent different genetically. That makes their closest relative still pretty far away, about as far away as humans are from mushrooms, Boston said.

The Naica caves an abandoned lead and zinc mine are half a mile (800 meters) deep. Before drilling occurred by a mine company, the mines had been completely cut off from the outside world. Some were as vast as cathedrals, with crystals lining the iron walls. They were also so hot that scientists had to don cheap versions of space suits to prevent contamination with outside life and had ice packs all over their bodies.

Boston said the team could only work about 20 minutes at a time before ducking to a "cool" room that was about 100 degrees (38 Celsius).

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Owlscrying
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Re: Biologists find weird cave life that may be 50,000 years old
Reply #1 - 02/18/17 at 12:32:13
 


Cave of the Crystals is a cave connected to the Naica Mine 300 metres (980 ft) below the surface in Naica, Chihuahua, Mexico. One of the world's most spectacular geographical discoveries was the cave of giant crystals with its selenite crystals of a size never seen before.

Most of them measure six meters in length, with some of them reaching eleven meters.

The temperature at this depth varies from 45C to 50C, while the percentage of humidity ranges from 90 to 100%, meaning that human beings cannot survive there for longer than two hours.


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