One of the world’s youngest islands will be drilled in an effort to understand how land forms on Earth.
The tiny island of Surtsey wasn’t even there 50 years ago. This 1.3 square kilometer island was formed off Iceland’s southwestern coast somewhere between 1963 and 1967 by a series of volcanic eruptions. And next month, a team of scientists will drill two holes into the depths of this young land. Supported in part by the International Continental Scientific Drilling Program, this will be the most detailed look at newly-formed land, which researchers hope will help them understand how molten rock, cold seawater, and the underground biosphere interact.
Being so new, Surtsey could probably boast some of the wildest, most untouched environments currently on the planet.