Skip to comments.Life is found in deepest layer of Earth's crust
Posted on 11/19/2010 1:25:40 PM PST by Fractal Trader
IT'S crawling with life down there. A remote expedition to the deepest layer of the Earth's oceanic crust has revealed a new ecosystem living over a kilometre beneath our feet. It is the first time that life has been found in the crust's deepest layer, and an analysis of the new biosphere suggests life could exist lower still.
On a hypothetical journey to the centre of the Earth starting at the sea floor, you would travel through sediment, a layer of basalt, and then hit the gabbroic layer, which lies directly above the mantle. Drilling expeditions have reached this layer before, but as the basalt is difficult to pierce it happens rarely.
To facilitate the task, the Integrated Ocean Drilling Programme set its sights on the Atlantis Massif. [SNIP] A team led by Stephen Giovannoni of Oregon State University in Corvallis drilled down to 1391 metres, where temperatures reach 102 °C.
There, they found communities of bacteria that were sparse but widespread. The type of bacteria they found came as a surprise to Giovannoni, who has previously found micro-organisms living in the basalt layer. "We expected to find similar organisms in the deeper layer," he says. "But actually it was very different."
One key difference was that archaea were absent in the gabbroic layer. Also, genetic analysis revealed that unlike their upstairs neighbours, many of the gabbroic bugs had evolved to feed off hydrocarbons like methane and benzene. [SNIP]
"This deep biosphere is a very important discovery," says Rolf Pedersen of the University of Bergen, Norway. He points out that the reactions that produce oil and gas abiotically inside the crust could happen in the mantle, meaning life may be thriving deeper yet.
(Excerpt) Read more at newscientist.com ...
That would be a TSA discovery.
Peak oil. LMAO.
Are the eco fecal freaks right about anything?
Yes and these are the Libs, planning their next comeback...
Did anyone else notice this little land mine embedded in the article?
Huh. I was betting on a caramel nougat.
Now, how we're going to manage to get deep drilling equipment to the surface of Titan or Europa, that's for future generations to engineer.
>Are the eco fecal freaks right about anything?
Here’s what worries me...Speaking of sediment, what happens when all the rocks and dirt above sea
level eventually erode into the oceans? That will FLOOD THE WHOLE EARTH!!! What are
we doing about earth erosion now? Our offspring will all need boats!
At the rate we are extracting oil from the earth your scenario is bound to happen. We are removing more oil mass than volcanoes are creating new land mass.
We all DOOMED.....*bong hit*
I can here Algore saying that with a straight face.
Eventually, they will find that life originated in the crust and then migrated to the oceans. And your point is dead-on, life may well be found in the crust on Mars, Venus, Mercury and elsewhere.
Oh I did for sure...
Now they’ll have to cleanse all who have seen the remark...
So THAT'S where Algore has been hiding out.
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