Scientists find helium under a lake in Tanzania

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

LAKE RUKWA, TANZANIA - No party last forever, but scientists have found a way to keep the party balloons flying just a little while longer. We're talking about helium. For years, we've been hearing news that the global supply of this gas has been running out. See, there's only a finite amount of this stuff on earth. Once it's gone, it's gone for good. But before you go on and cue up "Last Dance", listen up. Scientists have discovered an untapped supply of helium ready for the taking. Talk about a pick-me-up

Geologists from Durham and Oxford Universities have discovered a fresh supply of helium in Africa, under Tanzania's Lake Rukwa. This find is enough to fill 600,000 olympic-sized swimming pools with the lighter-than-air gas. Now, that sounds like a party.

Besides filling up party balloons, helium is used by the space industry to clean out rocket engines, and by medical field for cooling down MRI scanners. With the current supply set to run out within 20 years, this newly found resource of helium will add about seven more years to that. In the meantime, researchers hope to find more. This news of new helium is bound to make a lot of people cheer. Or at least, make them sound like chipmunks.