Nature & Environment
Massive canyon found under Antarctic ice
By T.K. Randall
January 18, 2014 · 24 comments
Researchers have been studying the subglacial terrain of Antarctica. Image Credit: CC BY-SA 2.0 Eli Duke
A huge subglacial trench deeper than the Grand Canyon has been discovered hidden beneath the Antarctic.
The discovery was made by a team of scientists who had been charting an ancient mountain range located deep below the ice known as the Ellsworth Subglacial Highlands.
Using a combination of ground-penetrating radar and satellite imagery they were able to build up a picture of the continent's long lost topography.
The giant trench is believed to go down over 1.9 miles which makes it deeper than the Grand Canyon's 1.13 miles. It is thought that this new Antarctic canyon was initially formed by an ancient river running through a geological fault, then widened over the years by glaciation.
"It's a huge privilege to be able to reveal another piece of the jigsaw puzzle that is the surface of our Earth," said geophysicist Neil Ross who lead the study team.
Source: National Geographic
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