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Learning More about the Aral Sea
19.07.2011 21:49
Learning More about the Aral Sea
The Aral Sea

Researchers from Russia and America studied sediments of the Aral Sea and learned some interesting facts from the history of our planet.

Studies showed that the sea, which nearly disappeared at the moment, used to cover part of Western Siberia about 10 000 years ago.

Researchers made a well at the seaside and unearthed a 20-meter-thick sediment layer with clay, sand and aleurites, carrying shells of invertebrates and foraminifera.

Many invertebrates were found in marginal layers of 0-8.5 meters and 16.6-20 meters. The middle layer between 8.5 and 16.6 meters revealed very few and damaged shells. Scientists concluded that this layer was disturbed by the sea, when it had grown.

Radiocarbon dating by means of accelerating mass-spectrometry showed the age of this layer to be 6690 years. However, same foraminifera were detected in lakes, located in southern lands of Western Siberia. Possible explanation is that a catastrophe happened, and waters of the Aral Sea traveled to Western Siberia via a hole in mountains.

More studies are required to restore details of the past of this interesting sea.

Source: Science & Technologies



Author: Anna Kizilova

Tags: ecology geology natural history   

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