DLS Speakers 2011
Anna-Louise Reysenbach is a microbial ecologist whose research focuses on the microbes that thrive at high temperatures (thermophiles), such as in terrestrial hot springs (Yellowstone, Kamchatka, Iceland, Chile, Italy, New Zealand) and at deep-sea hydrothermal vents (using remotely-operated vehicles such as Jason and Tiburon, and human-occupied vehicles Alvin, Shinkai 6500, and Nautile). She is most interested in interdisciplinary research that enables her to understand the metabolic and taxonomic diversity of thermophiles and the roles they play in the cycling and precipitation of minerals in hydrothermal environments. Understanding the patterns of microbial diversity associated with different hydrothermal environments has provided clues of how to culture some of the important microbial members of these environments. Her lab successfully grew the first thermoacidophile from deep-sea vents and has described many new hydrogen/sulfur oxidizing bacteria from deep-sea and terrestrial vents. The genomes of these organisms are now providing reference sequences for large-scale (meta) genomic temporal and spatial studies from select hydrothermal environments. Reysenbach has a Ph.D. from University of Cape Town, South Africa and is currently the Chair of the Biology Department at Portland State University, Portland, Oregon.
- Science Community Lecture: From mantle to microbe: Geology shapes microbial communities of hydrothermal vent deposits
- General Public Lecture: From there to here, from here to there, funny microbes are everywhere (at deep-sea vents)
Ken Rubin is a professor of geochemistry and volcanology at the University of Hawaii who studies the timing and style of eruptive and pre-eruptive magmatic processes at ocean ridges and at subaerial volcanoes in Iceland, Hawaii and Mexico. He and his research group develop detailed spatio-temporal eruption histories to learn about melting and magma transport/evolution in the EarthÕs mantle and crust. He also studies the impacts of volcanism on marine hydrothermal activity and ecosystems, by coupling high resolution volcano mapping and sampling with analysis of natural radiometric and other geochemical tracers in melts, crystals and geothermal waters. He has participated in 10 submarine volcanic event detection and response efforts sponsored by national programs such as RIDGE, Ridge 2000, and others, plus numerous other volcano-related research cruises and expeditions to active volcanoes on land. He has led or participated in several group efforts to communicate about the Earth and environmental science to the public.
- Science Community Lecture: Ocean ridge and other submarine eruptions - the link between Earth's deep interior and the sea floor
- General Public Lecture: Caught in the act - first observations of a deep-sea lava flow and pyroclast eruption
Bruce Strickrott is the Expedition Leader and Chief Pilot of the manned deep submergence vehicle Alvin, operated as a part of the U.S. National Deep Submergence Facility. He has worked as a member of the Alvin Group since 1996 and has over 300 dives as Pilot in Command. Bruce began his career in the U.S. Navy working on naval surface vessels as an electronic weapons and radar technician, including during Operation Desert Shield/Desert Storm. During this period he trained as a SCUBA diver, an experience that motivated him toward a future in oceanographic work. After the Navy, Bruce attended Florida Atlantic University, working as a dive master and mate aboard the R/V Oceaneer IV, performing SCUBA and AUV (autonomous underwater vehicle) operations, and obtained a B.S. in Ocean Engineering. Currently Bruce is working with the engineering group at Woods Hole toward the design and upgrade of Alvin. This upgrade will improve the existing vehicle in many ways including advanced control, sensor, video and interface systems and will increase the submersible's maximum depth rating from 4500 meters to 6500 meters. Additionally, Bruce is also working with scientists at Woods Hole toward promoting science, math and engineering education to high school students. When not working on the R/V Atlantis (Alvin's support ship) he lives in Denver, Colorado where he enjoys skiing, hiking, motorcycling and flying airplanes.
- Science Community Lecture: Engineering technologies for scientific study of the deep sea
- General Public Lecture: Human presence in the deep ocean, from fantasy to reality
Brandy Toner, an Assistant Professor at the University of Minnesota, studies the biogeochemical processes that move metals through pristine and contaminated environments. Low-temperature geochemistry and molecular environmental chemistry are Dr. Toner's primary research fields, and her work places special emphasis on mineralogy and metal speciation. As a Ph.D. student at the University of California-Berkeley, she studied the structure and surface reactivity of minerals formed by manganese oxidizing bacteria. As a National Research Council Associate and NASA Postdoctoral Fellow at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, she turned her interest in mineral surface chemistry to investigations of iron biogeochemistry of mid-ocean ridges. She is particularly interested in the mineralogy and chemistry of hydrothermal plumes. Her research aims to address questions such as: What is the dynamic mineral make up of buoyant hydrothermal plumes? What are the mechanisms for trace element sequestration by plume particles? How does the timing and composition of plume minerals affect water column elemental budgets? A specialist in synchrotron radiation spectroscopy and diffraction technologies, Dr. Toner is using novel tools to address these questions, leading to exciting discoveries at hydrothermal vent sites around the globe: East Pacific Rise 9-10 deg N, Loihi Seamount, Juan de Fuca Ridge, and Eastern Lau Spreading Center.
- Science Community Lecture: Integrated nested-scale biogeochemistry of hydrothermal plumes at a back-arc spreading center
- General Public Lecture: Can iron from deep-sea hot springs fertilize the oceans?