Subsurface Biosphere Workshop

InterRidge Office mac at ext.jussieu.fr
Thu Jan 16 10:47:26 EST 1997


************************************************************************
                                    ANNOUNCEMENT OF A WORKSHOP ON

                     THE SUBSURFACE BIOSPHERE AT MID-OCEAN RIDGES

                                                 WASHINGTON, DC, USA

                                                   17th - 19th MARCH 1997

                        CONVENORS:  Kim Juniper, Marv Lilley and John Baross

SPONSORS: RIDGE Program, USSAC, NOAA VENTS Program, University of
Washington Volcano Center

                            REGISTRATION DEADLINE:  17th JANUARY 1997

                                                  REPLY TO: ridge at unh.edu

This information can also be found at the RIDGE website:
http://ridge.unh.edu/meetings/biosphere/

Apologies to those of you who also received this announcement via RIDGE or
BRIDGE earlier this month.
************************************************************************

     Workshop Goals: The recent, rapid growth of interest in the existence
of microbial life in the seafloor and continental subsurface has created a
real need for an information synthesis to guide the development of research
strategies and programs.  At this stage, there is little doubt that a deep
biosphere exists.  What is at issue are its nature and extent.  The
proposed workshop would provide a forum for exchange of information
regarding the characteristics of the subsurface biosphere on mid-ocean
ridges.
     The workshop would:

  1. Critically review evidence for subsurface microbial life at the ridge
crest and elsewhere.
  2. Consider the nature of the physical and geochemical environment within
young ocean crust.
  3. Consider the diversity and phylogeny of organisms potentially living
in the subsurface.
  4. Consider physiological adaptations of organisms to the subsurface
environment and their influence on geochemical processes.
  5. Discuss research strategies for sampling and observing the subsurface
biosphere.

     Workshop Format: We anticipate that the workshop will be widely
attended by interested scientists and funding agency administrators.  We
plan to organize the workshop around a series of plenary presentations and
panel discussions held over a 2 1/2 day period.  One hour panel discussions
would follow groups of plenary presentations.  The ensuing discussion and
debate would allow input from a larger number of experts and provide the
"audience" with a broader view of topics and controversies than could be
achieved through plenary presentations alone.

     There will be a Poster Session open to all participants, probably on
the evening of March 17th.

     Preliminary Agenda

          Day 1

          1. EVIDENCE TO DATE
          "Evaluation of evidence for subsurface microbial life at ridge
crests and elsewhere"
          Microbiology Panel Discussion

          2. PHYSICAL AND GEOPHYSICAL CHARACTERISTICS OF THE RIDGE CREST
SUBSURFACE
          "Physical properties of young ocean crust"
          "Hydrothermal flow patterns in relation to crustal porosity and
permeability structure"
          Geophysics/Physics Panel Discussion

          3. GEOCHEMICAL CHARACTERISTICS OF THE RIDGE CREST SUBSURFACE
          "Rock-water interactions"
          "Abiotic synthesis of organic compounds"
          "Sulfur and metal chemistry"
          "Volatiles"
          Geochemistry Panel Discussion
          Evening Poster Session

           Day 2

          4. MICROBIAL DIVERSITY
          "Taxonomic diversity"
          "Physiological diversity"

          5. MICROBIAL BIOGEOCHEMISTRY
          "Iron biogeochemistry"
          "Interaction with volatiles and sulfur compounds"
          "Substrates for heterotrophic growth in the subsurface"
          "Eukaryotic life in the subsurface"
          Microbiology Panel Discussion

          Day 3

          6. RESEARCH STRATEGIES
          "Drilling, Event Detection/Response and Instrumented Observatories"
          Strategy Panel Discussion

If you are interested in participating in this workshop, please apply to
the RIDGE Office no later than JANUARY 17, 1997 at:
RIDGE Office,
OPAL,
University of New Hampshire,
39 College Rd.,
Morse Hall,
Durham, NH  03824-3525,
USA;
Phone:  +1 (603) 862-4501;
Fax:  +1 (603) 862-0083;
E-mail:  ridge at unh.edu.

For more information about the Subsurface Biosphere Workshop contact:
Kim Juniper (juniper.kim at uqam.ca),
Marvin Lilley (lilley at u.washington.edu),
John Baross (jbaross at u.washington.edu).





More information about the Deepsea mailing list