An international research team that included three scientists from the University of Rhode Island’s Graduate School of Oceanography has discovered single-celled microorganisms in a location where they didn’t expect to find them.
“Water boils on the (Earth’s) surface at 100 degrees Celsius, and we found organisms living in sediments at 120 degrees Celsius,” said URI Professor of Oceanography Arthur Spivack, who led the geochemistry efforts of the 2016 expedition organized by the Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology and Germany’s MARUM-Center for Marine and Environmental Sciences at the University of Bremen. The study was carried out as part of the work of Expedition 370 of the International Ocean Discovery Program.
The research results from a two-month-long expedition in 2016 will be published today in the journal Science.
The news follows an announcement in October that microbial diversity below the seafloor is as rich as on Earth’s surface. Researchers