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NGS Picture Id 2187536

Photo by Martin Edstrom...

Team members Alfred Runow, Katja Adolphson and Toan Bamboo on the verge of Hang Son Doong's second doline

On the verge of Hang Son Doong’s second doline, team members Alfred Runow, Katja Adolphson and Toan Bamboo are standing at the intersection of life and death for the world as we know it. The sunbeams from the doline, the sinkhole, reach down into the cave – giving life to ferns, moss and a huge field of phytoclast: microscopic plant fragments with chlorophyll that fossilize and become rock. From where they are standing, the rock is slowly growing toward the light – eventually (in many million years time) shutting out daylight forever.

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