Life without Volcanic Heat

Astrobiology News staff writer , NASA Astobiology Institute

This site is a news article by NASA Astrobiology Institute featuring Deborah Kelly from the University of Washington. She talks about the navigational challenges of reaching this newly discovered hydrothermal field called “The Lost City”, and describes why it’s potentially such an important and exciting find. Kelly says that it is a completely different type of hydrothermal system not requiring volcanic heat, and that it has implications for examining early Earth questions and hydrothermal systems on other planets. The find opens the possibility that a much larger portion of the seafloor may host hydrothermal vents (and microbial life) than was previously thought. The site contains descriptions of some of the unique topographical features of the field, and the thermal chemistry that drives the formation of this type of feature.

Subject: Biology:Evolution:Principles, Biology:Ecology:Habitats:Marine, Biology:Biogeochemistry, Ecology:Biofilms, Biology:Astrobiology, Microbiology
Resource Type: Scientific Resources:Research Results, Pedagogic Resources:Research Results, Audio/Visual:Images/Illustrations
Grade Level: General Public
Extreme Environments: Anoxic, Alkaline, Extremely Hot
Topics: Biosphere:Evolution:Principles, Biosphere:Ecology:Biofilms, Biosphere:Biogeochemistry, Astrobiology, Ecology:Habitats:Marine, Biosphere:Microbiology
Theme: Teach the Earth:Course Topics:Biogeoscience, EcologyKeywords: carbonate, olivine, serpenization, serpentine, methane hydrogen, oxidation