Welcome to the 2018 Guaymas Basin Expedition blog, daily updated from R/V Atlantis. Starting yesterday, expedition participants are setting out from Germany, Mexico, and all over the USA [Georgia, Massachusetts, Montana, North and South Carolina, Texas] to meet in the Port of Guaymas on the Gulf of California, and to join the science crew on the Atlantis for a new deep-sea dive adventure with Submersible Alvin and AUV Sentry in Guaymas Basin. The objective of this cruise is to investigate the highly diverse and unusual microbial life of Guaymas Basin and the geochemical characteristics of their habitat. No other vent site provides so many different ecological niches and hosts so many different evolutionary lineages and physiological types of microorganisms; there are extremely hot hydrothermal chimneys and hydrothermal fluids rich in sulfide and methane, organic-rich sediments across the spreading center that are permeated by hydrothermal heat and fluid flow, and oily sediments and chimneys that reek of freshly produced hydrocarbons, naturally synthesized under extreme temperature and pressure. Thus, Guaymas Basin is very popular with all flavors of microbiologists who gravitate to this epicenter of marine microbial biodiversity. This expedition is funded by the National Science Foundation via Biological and Chemical Oceanography grants to Andreas Teske, Mandy Joye and Rick Peterson, and further supported by foreign participants who provide their expertise and scientific muscle for free. Save travels and see you all on November 15 or 16 on the ship!
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“One who was born by the ocean or has associated with it cannot ever be quite content away from it for very long”. —