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Under the Surface



In the summer of 2008, Professor Dennis Bird joined an international team of scientists led by Professor Minik Rosing of the Geological Museum, University of Copenhagen in Greenland to seek evidence for the earliest life on Earth. Previously scientists have shown that life, in the form of photosynthetic microorganisms, inhabited Earth 3800 million years ago.

The team established a camp at a remote location near the Greenland ice cap, where two deep cores were drilled out of the mountain and brought home for further research in the laboratory. The drill holes penetrated the oldest know sequence of sedimentary rocks on Earth.

The video follows Minik Rosing, Dennis Bird and PhD student Emily Pope and their team, and looks at life in camp and the work of the Canadian drillers and geologists in the beautiful Arctic summer as they learn about the earliest life on Earth.

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The film was produced, directed and filmed by Mette Mailand, Plus Pictures, Denmark. Also appearing are geology student Camille Thomas, of the Ecole Normale Superieure de Lyon, France, and the drillers Justin and Joshua Butt, John Keating, and Jason Jackson, and senior geologist at Nuna Minerals, Klaus Ostergaard. The drill project was funded by the Danish National Research Foundation through the Nordic Center for Earth Evolution.