What is Permafrost?

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What is Permafrost? Blog Image


Scientists recently revived a worm that was frozen 46,000 years ago below the surface in the Siberian permafrost.

About Permafrost:


  • Permafrost is any ground that remains completely frozen—32°F (0°C) or colder—for at least two years straight.
  • Global Distribution: 
    • These permanently frozen grounds are most common in regions with high mountains and in Earth’s higher latitudes—near the North and South Poles.
    • Permafrost covers large regions of the Earth. Almost a quarter of the land area in the Northern Hemisphere has permafrost underneath. 
  • Composition
    • Permafrost is made of a combination of soil, rocks and sand that are held together by ice. The soil and ice in permafrost stay frozen all year long. 
    • Near the surface, permafrost soils also contain large quantities of organic carbon—a material leftover from dead plants that couldn’t decompose, or rot away, due to the cold.
    • Lower permafrost layers contain soils made mostly of minerals. 
    • A layer of soil on top of permafrost does not stay frozen all year. This layer, called the active layer, thaws during the warm summer months and freezes again in the fall.


Q1) Where is Siberian located?

Siberia is a vast geographical region located in Northern Asia, primarily within the borders of the Russian Federation. It is known for its extreme cold temperatures, vast wilderness, and diverse landscapes. Siberia covers a significant portion of Russia's land area, making it one of the largest regions in the world.

Source: A worm has been revived after 46,000 years in the Siberian permafrost