What is the coldest weather you have endured? No matter how cold, it cannot compare to Antarctica, where temperatures can approach minus 128.6 degrees Fahrenheit or minus 89.2 degrees Celsius! However, the cold in Antarctica is nothing compared to the terrifying new discoveries scientists are making in Antarctica! Even NASA is involved in these amazing discoveries! What have scientists discovered in the cold expanse of Antarctica? How does it affect you where you live? Join us as we bring you terrifying new discoveries scientists have made under the ice of Antarctica!
Many people know Antarctica is covered in ice. In fact, there is ice as far as your eyes can see in any direction. However, not many people know the place was not always covered in ice! The continent lay over the south pole without freezing for almost 100 million years. While the South Pole records average winter temperatures of 78 degrees Fahrenheit below zero, evidence suggests that Antarctica used to be as warm as Italy and covered by a green expanse of rainforest!
Then, about 34 million years ago, a dramatic shift in climate happened at the boundary between the Eocene and Oligocene epochs. The warm greenhouse climate, stable since the extinction of the dinosaurs, became dramatically colder, creating an « ice- house » at the poles that have continued to the present day.
Just what caused the climate shift from rainforest to an icebox is a question scientists are trying to answer! The answer is crucial because it should tell us more about how the climate responds to major controls like changes in the Earth’s orbit around the sun and the concentration of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. Suppose you wonder how scientists could measure the temperature of Antarctica millions of years ago with a degree of accuracy. In that case, they do so by studying tiny microfossils in layers of deep-sea mud. This allows them to record climate changes over