A group of Russian scientists plumbing the frozen Antarctic in search of a lake buried in ice for tens of millions of years have failed to respond to increasingly anxious U.S. colleagues — and as the days creep by, the fate of the team remains unknown. “No word from the ice for 5 days,” Dr. John Priscu professor of Ecology at Montana State University, told FoxNews.com via email. The team from Russia’s Arctic and Antarctic Research Institute (AARI) have been drilling for weeks in an effort to reach isolated Lake Vostok, a vast, dark body of water hidden 13,000 ft. below the ice sheet’s surface. The lake hasn’t been exposed to air in more than 20 million years.

Priscu said there was no way to get in touch with the team — and the already cold weather is set to plunge, as Antarctica’s summer season ends and winter sets in. “Temps are dropping below -40 Celsius [-40 degrees Fahrenheit] and they have only a week or so left before they have to winterize the station,” he said. “I can only imagine what things must be like at Vostok Station this week.” The team’s disappearance could not come at a worse time: They are about 40 feet from their goal of reaching the body of water, Priscu explained, a goal that the team was unable to meet as they raced the coming winter exactly one year ago.

When the winter arrives in the next few weeks, the temperature can get twice as freezing. Vostok Station boasts the lowest recorded temperature on Earth: -89.4 degrees Celsius (-129 degrees Fahrenheit). If the team does reach the lake water, they will bring its water up through the hole and let it freeze there over the winter. The following year they will be able to start research on what they find, Priscu explained.



  1. Kiwini says:

    “When the winter arrives in the next few weeks, the temperature can get twice as freezing.”

    WTF, over?…

    • Dr Spearmint Fur says:

      Bad wording. I think he meant was twice as cold. Don’t bother to find out for yourself, -40 is a lot colder than -20.

    • Yankinwaoz says:

      You know, its like “double secret probation”.

  2. Buzz Mega says:

    Is there a way to think of “freezing” in some scale like db?

  3. deowll says:

    All we can know for sure is that crew may be safe and snug but it could be dead or in very bad trouble and nobody can do much of anything to help them.

  4. E. Manuel Velicoughski says:

    “The lake hasn’t been exposed to air in more than 20 million years.”

    “At last! Something TRULY unspoiled! Quick! Let’s spoil it!”

    OK, you’ve finally convinced me. We ARE a virus.

  5. Mr Anderson says:

    Why only on Faux Knews ?

    They got a gusher of cold water that froze them all in their tracks?

    BP was the drill team?

  6. KiltedTim says:

    Something isn’t right here…

    “When the winter arrives in the next few weeks…”

    Um… It’s February… It’s ANTarctica… That’s like… August in the Northern hemisphere. I know it’s the pole… and it’s pretty damned cold all the time… but I’d think they have a little more than a few weeks till winter sets in unless we’ve really screwed up the climate that badly.

  7. orion3014 says:

    I’ll be damned if this isn’t something right out of the X-Files….

  8. Glenn E. says:

    The end of Antarctic summer. It’s the beginning of August, down there. I think they’ve got more than a week or so. CBS news had just announced a huge crack in the ice, of the southern continent. And that it was possible that a huge iceberg could be formed, if the mass separated. To which I say, Bullsh*t, it’s late summer down there. I’m sure the ice cracks thru every year, by now. It’s got nothing to do with GW. But of course, these lying bastards “forget” to tell the public that the season are reverse between north and south hemispheres. So out middle of winter, up north. Is there middle of summer, down south. And according to the woodchuck, we’ve got at least 6 more weeks of winter up here. So I suspect that the south has nearly as much, of summer warmth. I know it’s a little shorter. But I don’t believe its so much shorter that things are gonna freeze up over night, down at the antarctic. And what about that huge crack in the ice. If it’s still warm enough for that to happen, then it doesn’t sound like winter is a week away. And if it were, then we needn’t worry about the damn crack. It’ll freeze right up solid.

    Isn’t in interesting how they can have these climate predictions both ways, at the same time? Having there cake, and eating it too, they call it. The russian scientists are in danger of being frozen. But the ice is cracked and could separate into a massive iceberg at any moment. I’d say that’s pretty impossible to be both right. But not for the climate doomsdayers.

    And why exactly are they drilling for water 2.5 miles down. Probably to start up a new bottled water business. Sub-Antarctic water. Because they haven’t said what the scientific value of this is. They don’t really believe that water is 20 million years old, do they? It’s WATER, not mercury. It can seep out and mix with the ice above it, while new water takes it’s place. What traps it, is made of water too. This is just science, wasting money. They’re probably hoping to find some ancient life in there, in order to say it proves Darwin’s theory. Even though that doesn’t prove anything, accept that scientists can stretch an hypothesis into a theory that can’t even be tested. And so, skip over their own sacred scientific method, and proclaim it a fact, just on the weight of all the time and money they’ve spent on it.

    Why? Because they want to be the priests of their own new world religion. And enjoy the power and prestige that the old world religions have had for a millennium. But it’s “dead man’s shoes”, in order to get that power. So the world must be convinced that Darwin was the Moses of Evolution. And only the scientists know of his commandments. So get that Lost Ark of proto-life, out of that underground lake. And proclaim, glory be to Darwin. Yeah, right. Well, at least it’s cheaper than a trip to Mars.

    • b0utch says:

      The beginning of august? Wait what? Antartica is not in the same time line as the rest of the planet or you are totaly stupid. So I kept reading and oh ok now it’s clear. Total morron.

  9. JimD, Boston, MA says:

    Drained to make Evian !!!

  10. bobbo, the pragmatic existential evangelical anti-theist and Culture Critic says:

    Report filed this morning inconsistent on whether the lake has or has not been reached. Seems to say both. No mention of loss of contact with the group up there. Makes me think this article was filed a week ago and got published to fill up the space?

    http://washingtonpost.com/national/health-science/russians-drill-into-previously-untouched-lake-vostok-below-antarctica/2012/02/06/gIQAGziNuQ_story.html