The oldest water in the world has been found, and someone has already taken a sip. According to Indy100, a scientist in 2016 discovered what is believed to be the oldest water in Earth’s history, located in Canada—or under Canada, to be more precise.
The scientist’s first act upon discovering this dinosaur water was to immediately give it the ‘ol slurp-and-burp.
Billions Of Years Old
Professor Barbara Sherwood Lollar was studying a Canadian mine with a team of geologists when she came across the geriatric H2O.
The world’s oldest water flows almost two miles below ground and is believed to be between 1.5 billion and 2.6 billion years old. That’s older than any other known water source on the planet.
Sherwood Lollar’s first instinct was, of course, to taste the ancient liquid. How did it taste? “Very salty and bitter,” according to the professor, “much saltier than seawater.”
The taste test results weren’t very surprising. It’s an accepted fact in the scientific community that the saltier water is, the older it tends to be. Sherwood Lollar’s water being the oldest water ever discovered, it only makes sense that it would be extremely salty.
Aside from saltiness, Barbara Sherwood Lollar also described the water’s consistency as “more viscous than tap water,” and like a “very light maple syrup.”
Drank It More Than Once
She also described the water’s color as “orangy” due to the liquid’s mineral content and its reaction to oxygen.
While we personally think that the world’s oldest water sounds nasty—a thick, syrupy orange fluid bursting with salt, yuck—the professor confessed to having sampled the beverage more than once.
“I have to admit I have tasted it from time to time.”
Star Wars Is Geologically Accurate?
The professor’s willingness to gulp down a mouthful of strange moisture is not that weird apparently.
According to Sherwood Lollar, geologists are always putting strange stuff in their mouths in the name of science.
“If you’re a geologist who works with rocks, you’ve probably licked a lot of rocks,” said Sherwood Lollar.
This might come as a shock to any Star Wars fans who watched the part in The Last Jedi where a resistance soldier tasted the ground on the planet Crait and wondered why, in Lucas’s name, anyone would ever do that.
Apparently, Rian Johnson was just trying to make the most scientifically accurate Star Wars film that he could.
Salt In The Water
Earth’s oldest water source also contained life at some point. Sherwood Lollar and her team examined the composition of the salt in the water and determined that it once held living organisms.
“We were able to indicate that the signal we are seeing in the fluids has to have been produced by microbiology.” said the professor.
No Life In The Water
The fact that the water doesn’t contain life presently comes as no surprise. After all, what lifeform would want to swim around in orange syrup water with a higher sodium content than a sports drink?
Come to think of it, the way Barabara Sherwood Lollar described the liquid, it actually sounds more like the Earth’s oldest source of Gatorade than the planet’s oldest water.
Just to be on the safe side, though, professional sports teams should refrain from dumping a cooler full of the world’s oldest water over their coach’s head after a game.