SciShow reports on two recent discoveries that have scientists very excited. The world’s oldest water has been found, and it can sustain life. Also, we made a big leap in understanding the planet’s rarest naturally occurring element, Astatine.
Under Ontario, Canada, the world’s oldest water system has been found in a mine. The water is at least 1.5 billion years old and has a make-up similar to that of deep sea thermal vents, which can support primitive life. This has scientists speculating that extra-terrestrial life might be found in water beneath the surface of planets like Mars and Europa. In other news, scientists have discovered Astatine’s ionization potential, or the energy required to remove an electron, turning an atom into an ion. One day, researchers hope to use Astatine’s extreme, yet precise, radioactivity to combat cancer cells.