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Watch A Camera Drop Into A Hole Beneath Antarctica In Search Of Earth's Oldest Ice

COLDEX are on a mission to find Antarctica's oldest ice that formed millions of years ago.


Tom Hale

Senior Journalist

clockDec 30 2022, 17:16 UTC
Video showing a camera go down a borehole in Antarctica to reveal what could be the Earth's oldest ice!

Down the rabbit hole we go! Image credit: Austin Carter via Storyful

A team of scientists has recently headed to the South Pole in a push to dig deep beneath Antarctica and capture some of Earth’s oldest ice. To provide a little snapshot of this important work, one of the project’s scientists Austin Carter, a graduate student at Scripps Institute of Oceanography, recently shared a stunning time-lapse video of a journey deep beneath Antarctica.

As the camera goes deeper and deeper, you’ll see the color and texture of the ice age as if you’re zooming deep into Antarctica’s history. 


The video shows a camera being pushed down a 93-meter (305-foot) borehole in the Allan Hills of East Antarctica. The ice here is believed to have been formed and buried up to two to three million years ago, so it provides a stunning insight into the environment of the past.

The video comes from the Center for Oldest Ice Exploration, or COLDEX, a project led by Oregon State University. Their ongoing expedition to Antarctica hopes to gather some of the oldest ice in the region with the aim of collecting data on the ancient climate records preserved in it.

Along with taking ice core samples, the team hope to better understand what lies beneath using ice-penetrating radar and airplane surveys. 

By analyzing the dust and tiny ancient gas bubbles trapped inside this deep and ancient ice, scientists will be able to gain invaluable insights it how Earth’s climate has changed over the past millions of years. 

natureNaturenatureplanet earth
  • tag
  • climate change,

  • video,

  • antarctica,

  • South Pole,

  • planet earth,

  • ice core,

  • ice core samples