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Massive lake discovered beneath Antarctica's ice

USA TODAY USA TODAY 28/04/2016 Mary Bowerman

In this file photo, a turquoise lake (C) forms from melting snow near Cape Folger on the Budd Coast on January 11, 2008 in the Australian Antarctic Territory. © orsten Blackwood - Pool/Getty Images In this file photo, a turquoise lake (C) forms from melting snow near Cape Folger on the Budd Coast on January 11, 2008 in the Australian Antarctic Territory. A massive newly discovered lake may lie below the surface of Antarctica’s ice sheet, according to researchers. 

A team of researchers used satellite images showing grooves in the ice to infer that a large lake was beneath the ice,  Martin Siegert of Imperial College London told New Scientist.  Though not as large as Lake Vostok, which is Antarctica’s deepest and largest subsurface lake, it is likely a close second, researchers said during the European Geosciences Union meeting in Vienna, New Scientist reported.

“We’ve seen these strange, linear channels on the surface, and are inferring these are above massive, 1000-kilometer-long channels, and there’s a relatively large subglacial lake there too,” Siegert told New Scientist. 

Researchers believe subglacial lakes may harbor organisms that have remained undisturbed beneath the ice sheath for millions of years. 

While it's still uncertain whether the lake actually lies beneath the surface, researchers are expected to pore over data in May, which will confirm whether or not it exists. 

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