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Seafloor & Below


The ocean science-art connection

Some of the most complex insights in marine science are no match for the communicative power of art. Check out these five recent collaborations between ocean scientists and artists

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Going the Distance

Jason Graphic

Unraveling the mysteries of the vast global ocean means entering some of the most remote and dangerous places on the planet.

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Ancient atmospheric oxygen sleuthing with ocean chromium

Phys.org

Currently, geoscientists and paleoceanographers from MIT and the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) are looking to add another use to that list: as a way to examine chemical shifts in ancient Earth’s oceans and atmosphere that are preserved in the seafloor’s paleorecord.

Racing an undersea volcano

A 3D rendering of the East Pacific Rise

Using AUV Sentry to make a high-resolution, near-bottom, seafloor map before the next volcanic eruption at the East Pacific Rise

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Finding answers in the ocean

The test being used to diagnose the novel coronavirus—and other pandemics like AIDS and SARS—was developed with the help of an enzyme isolated from a microbe found in marine hydrothermal vents as well as freshwater hot springs.

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Move Over, Mars: The Search for Life on Saturn’s Largest Moon

Nautilus
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“The great thing about hydrothermal vents is that they provide a lot of energy sources for microbial life that doesn’t include sunlight,” says Julie Huber, a marine chemist at WHOI. Organisms living at hydrothermal vents on Earth’s seafloors, she explains, “can use chemical energy, so that means things like sulphur, iron, hydrogen and methane and they create a base of the food chain.”

Move Over, Mars: The Search for Life on Saturn’s Largest Moon

Nautilus

Alien microbes could be flourishing in the underground seas of Titan and the solar system’s other ocean worlds. “The great thing about hydrothermal vents is that they provide a lot of energy sources for microbial life that doesn’t include sunlight,” says Julie Huber, a marine chemist at WHOI.