Headline News By Josh Pringle 258 Views

World's oldest water sample stored at national science museum in Ottawa

OTTAWA -- A bottle of water more than a billion years old is now stored in Ottawa.

Ingenium – Canada's Museums of Science and Innovation has acquired a water sample collected 2.4 kilometres below the earth's surface from the Kidd Creek Mine, near Timmins, Ont.

University of Toronto geologist Dr. Barbara Sherwood Lollar discovered the oldest flowing water in 2009.

In a statement, Ingenium says Dr. Sherwood Lollar and her lab analysed the water and discovered that the mean residence time of the water sample was more than ten times older than what was then considered to be the oldest known water.

"Some components of the water are older yet: this ancient water bears witness to the time before the great oxidation event, before the earth drew its first breath," said Ingenium.

In a video on Ingenium's website, curator of natural resources industrial technologies Rebecca Dolgoy said analysis determined the water is from the Precambrian time, a time before dinosaurs.  

The glass bottle of ancient water and some of the tools used during the collection and analysis of the sample will be housed in the Ingenium Centre, where it will be accessible for research, interpretation and collection development.

“Ingenium is thrilled to welcome this one-of-a-kind discovery into our exceptional collection," said Christina Tessier, President and CEO of Ingenium.

"We take great pride in having the privilege to care for this outstanding piece of world heritage that represents an incredible Canadian contribution to science and innovation on a global scale."

This is the oldest artifact ever acquired by Ingenium..