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Hydrothermal Vents


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.”

A New Ship’s Mission: Let the Deep Sea Be Seen

New York Times
new york times

Mr. Dalio was thinking of buying the Alucia when a team of WHOI experts used the vessel and an undersea robot to find the shattered remains of Air France Flight 447, which in 2009 had vanished over the South Atlantic with 228 passengers. Other search teams had failed, and Mr. Dalio saw the 2011 success as an indication of the field’s exploratory promise.

NASA eyes the ocean: How the deep sea could unlock outer space

The Christian Science Monitor

“When hydrothermal vents were discovered in 1977, it very much flipped biology on its end,” says Julie Huber, an oceanographer who studies life in and below the seafloor at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) on Cape Cod. “People knew that organisms could live off of chemical energy, but they didn’t imagine they could support animal ecosystems.”

Geology creates chemical energy: Origin of a massive methane reservoir discovered

Cosmos Magazine

Scientists know methane is released from deep-sea vents, but its source has long been a mystery. A team from Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution may have the answer. Analysis of 160 rock samples from across the world’s oceans provides evidence, they say, of the formation and abundance of abiotic methane – methane formed by chemical reactions that don’t involve organic matter.

Life Without Guts

The Atlantic

Piece and accompanying video highlights the Alvin sub and the discovery of hydrothermal vent life