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Plato's Atlantis My Theory

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Author Topic: Plato's Atlantis My Theory  (Read 61339 times)
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« Reply #165 on: June 19, 2007, 02:12:00 am »

If Atlantis was built on a salt dome, the Atlanteans had more than just convenience of water storage and irrigation.  It seems that where there are salt domes, there is petroleum and natural gas - how convenient - but also a beautiful white, alabaster type rock is formed which is great for carving.  Also, (altho the Atlanteans didn't have worry about freezing!) the springs from a salt dome don't freeze, but stay at a constant temperature because of the high salt content.  (Until they hit the frigid surface).

Hot springs in the High Arctic

(May 19, 2006)  Nunatsiaq News (Jane George)

Axel Heiberg’s salt domes mean running water, carving stone and maybe oil and gas

Imagine a spring flowing throughout the dark polar winter, when temperatures dip well below zero for months on end.

But this isn’t a fantasy: you can find springs like these on Nunavut’s Axel Heiberg Island, where, in some places, water emerges year-round out of ice and permafrost half a kilometre thick.

The springs’ water temperature remains constant, up to 6°C, regardless of the external air or ground temperature.

McGill University research expeditions first noticed these perennial springs near Expedition Fiord on Axel Heiberg in the 1960s. Dr. Wayne Pollard of McGill and his team have since detected and mapped about 40 similar springs on the island.

There are the only two other places in the world where springs of this type exist: in the La Popa Basin in Mexico and the Great Kavir Desert of Iran.

The origins of these springs go back to a time when the region lay on the bottom on an ancient, salty seabed 500 to 65 million years ago.

Even 55 million years ago, Axel Heiberg was a much warmer place, also home to sprawling forests of redwoods. The mummified remnants of some of these ancient forests can still be seen on the island’s Geodetic Hills.

The wet, warm climate of Axel Heiberg’s long ago past is gone, so the water that feeds today’s springs is melt or rain water, which sinks into the earth, or comes from deep underground. This water then returns to the surface through these salt deposits, as if squeezed through a toothpaste tube.

As a result, the water in these springs is salty, about five to 10 times as saline as seawater. The salt in this water ups the freezing point, allowing the water to remain in a liquid state all year round — or at least until it reaches the surface.

There are also other types of springs, which are high in sulphur or methane.

While the springs’ presence tells much about the warmer and turbulent geological past of Axel Heiberg, they may hold the key to the island’s warmer future, which could include gas or oil development.

That’s because these unusual springs are also associated with the presence of salt deposits, called salt domes or “salt diapirs.” Salt domes often signal the presence of gas and oil deposits in the vicinity, although these may lie very deep down.

“Where oil, gas and ground water occur under sheets of subsurface salt, there may be places where these fluids are trapped. If the oil and gas is abundant enough, then there is the chance for a commercial resource,” said Christopher Harrison of the Geological Survey of Canada, who has also studied diapirs in the High Arctic Islands. “This is a common setting for oil and gas in the Gulf of Mexico region where diapirs and salt sheets are also abundant.”

The Canadian Space Agency suspects that Axel Heiberg’s springs may reveal where past life existed on Mars. As these springs are warm, they contain live bacteria and other life forms, so they are considered to be similar to places where life may once have flourished on the now-frozen planet Mars.

Geologist Marcos Zentilli from Dalhousie University has CSA and other research money lined up to study the springs and salt domes. In July, Zentilli wants to return to Axel Heiberg to make better maps of the salt domes, collect hand-size samples of rocks within and around dome, and take measurements to estimate the growth of salt domes, which sometimes grow by as much as five cm a year.

But lack of logistical support from the Polar Continental Shelf Project and funding from International Polar Year, are making this research much harder to carry out.

“It’s our responsibility as scientists to understand more,” Zentilli says. “Where else can we find mountains that are actually growing?”

Zentilli also suggests the stone of alabaster quality, which is abundant near many of the domes, could be also used as an “inexhaustible source” of carving stone.

In the dry climate of the Arctic, summertime evaporation around the springs can lead to rock salt, gypsum and other less common minerals precipitating out of the water. The right combination of water and evaporation at a spring sometimes leads to large build-ups of unusual, brilliant white stone.

Last year, Resolute Bay carver Simeonie Amagoalik fashioned a piece of this stone into a seal, and found it fine to work with: yet another surprising by-product of Axel Heiberg’s unique springs and salt domes.
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An open-minded view of the past allows for an unprejudiced glimpse into the future.

Logic rules.

"Intellectual brilliance is no guarantee against being dead wrong."
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