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HomeNewsResearchers Go Back Underground to Continue Studying Billion-Year-Old Water

Researchers Go Back Underground to Continue Studying Billion-Year-Old Water

More scientists will be heading under ground to study 2-billion-year-old water found in Timmins.

For a little over a year, researchers from the University of Toronto have been studying this water found three kilometres below the earth’s surface at the Kidd Creek mine site for signs of life. Northern College has teamed up with the researchers to assist the study by letting them use the school’s lab and resources. U of T Researcher Doctor Oliver Warr says this way they can extract the water from the mine source and then study before it hits anything that could contaminate it.

This week they will be bringing researchers from the Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science Technology who specialize is finding microbes, or signs of life. Warr says it is very important to bring in this team.

He says they had to bring in the people who are world-renound for actually finding life in these kinds of extreme environments.

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JAMSTEC’s Doctor Shino Susuki says she is optimistic that she will find something in the water.

Doctor Oliver Warr says if they find this evidence, then it proves that life can exist in these deeper levels. He adds if life can be at these depths in Timmins, then why not elsewhere around the world.

Warr says researchers are also tracking some of the changes in the water. He says the water has been evolving over their last three visits where it started off extremely old, but is coming back younger and younger. He says it looks like there may be different fraction networks with different ages contributing to the fluids.

Warr says science is always changing and evolving, and what will really help us is to understand what these environments are really like and how they can change. 

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