And just look at its location on the map is scary. In the center of Antarctica, in a place that looks like the end of the world is the Vostok Station, a piece of Russia in the middle of the Antarctic solitude.
Vostok is a scientific research station owned by Russia in Antarctica. All scientific bases present there, Vostok is the only one inside the mysterious Antarctic continent.
The weather conditions are terrible. On average the temperature ranges between -60º and -80º below zero destroying the metal and forcing its occupants to be permanently covered. When being located to 3.488 meters of height, on a mountainous chain, the air is extremely pure and when arriving, if one is not prepared, can contract a pulmonary edema and die a few days later.
Such is the cold that the lowest temperature ever dated occurred in Vostok. Specifically, the 21 of July of 1983, the thermometers registered -89.2º below zero, although it is said that, in 1997, it was reached -91º below zero.
But they are not the only drawbacks, the ozone layer has a big hole in Antarctica so, the exposure to ionizing and ultraviolet radiation is much higher than in other places, with the consequences that entails. On average, a newcomer usually loses from 5 to 10 kilograms until he finishes acclimating.
From the coastal base of Mirni, the supplies and all the necessary equipment for the maintenance of the base are sent. In total, 25 scientists live during the summer and 13 in the terrible polar winter.
Even so, the inhabitants of the Vostok Station support the penalties well on base. The 16 of September of 1957 was created by the USSR, and then inherited by Russia in 1991. The scientists who reside here make a fundamental work for scientific progress since, below the station is Lake Vostok, a primeval wonder.
Lake Vostok is 250 kilometers long, 50 wide and almost 1000 meters deep, so it is the largest known subglacial lake. To give us an idea of its size, it is 3 times bigger than Lake Ontario in the USA. It has an estimated antiquity of 20 million years and contains the purest water on the planet. For years, members of the Russian expedition have drilled the ice sheet to reach the lake and extract samples. A titanic task due to the ice of several kilometers and the cold that destroyed all the machinery.
Finally, in the year 2012 managed to extract a sample of water from the lake, finding a bacteria hitherto unknown to humans. In addition, 3500 unknown DNA sequences were discovered. To prevent the lake from becoming contaminated and affecting its unique ecosystem, the drilling well was sealed.
His study will provide important information about the evolution of life on Earth and other planets. We have to take into account that the habitat where Lake Vostok is located is similar to the one we can find in the Europa satellites, the planet Jupiter, and Enceladus, which corresponds to Saturn.
As a curiosity, next to the station there is a unique monument. This is the heavy tractor ATT 11, which participated in the first trip to the Geomagnetic Pole of the Earth, and which commemorates the creation of the Vostok base in 1957.
Russian Lover, I know it's a terrible place, left out of God's hand, but ... Why not visit Antarctica and revel in the terrible beauty of this primordial continent?