There Is A ‘Lost City’ Deep In The Ocean And It’s A Different Place From Other Places : ScienceAlert

There Is A 'Lost City' Deep In The Ocean And It's A Different Place From Other Places : ScienceAlert
Written by admin

Near the summit of an underwater mountain west of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge, a somber view of towers rises.

Its creamy carbonate walls and pillars appear ghostly blue in the light of a remote-controlled vehicle sent to explore. They vary in height small mushroom-sized piles form a large monolith It stands 60 meters (about 200 feet) tall. This is the Lost City.

View from the Lost City
A remote-controlled vehicle shines a light on the towers of the Lost City. (D. Kelley/UW/URI-IAO/NOAA).

Discovered by scientists in 2000, more than 700 meters (2,300 feet) below the surface, The Lost City Hydrothermal Field is the longest-lived venting medium known in the ocean. Nothing else like it was found.

For at least 120,000 years, and perhaps longer, the rising mantle in this part of the world reacted with seawater, blowing hydrogen, methane, and other dissolved gases into the ocean.

In the cracks and crevices of the site’s vents, hydrocarbons nurture new microbial communities even without oxygen.

Bacteria in the calcite colon.
Bacterial sequences living in a calcite vent in Lost City. (University of Washington/CC BY 3.0).

Chimneys spraying gases up to 40 °C (104°F) home to abundant snails and crustaceans. Larger animals such as crab, shrimp, sea urchin, and eel are rare but still available.

Despite the extreme nature of the environment, it appears to be teeming with life, and some researchers consider it worthy of our attention and protection.

While other hydrothermal fields like this are likely elsewhere in the world’s oceans, this is the only one remote-controlled vehicles have ever found.

The hydrocarbons produced by Lost City’s vents were not formed from atmospheric carbon dioxide or sunlight, but from chemical reactions on the deep seafloor.

Since hydrocarbons are the building blocks of life, this raises the possibility that life arose from a habitat just like this one. And not just on our own planet.

“This is an example of a type of ecosystem that could be currently active on Enceladus or Europa,” said microbiologist William Brazelton. said The Smithsonian in 2018 referred to Saturn’s moons and Jupiter.

“And maybe Anthem in the past.”

Unlike underwater volcanic vents black smokersAlso called a possible first habitat, the Lost City’s ecosystem is not dependent on the heat of the magma.

While black smokers mostly produce iron and sulfur-rich minerals, the Lost City’s chimneys up to 100 times more hydrogen and methane.

Lost City’s calcite vents are also much larger than black smokers, suggesting they’ve been active longer.

Long airing from Lost City
Nine meter high chimney in the Lost City. (University of Washington/Woods Hole Institution of Oceanography).

The tallest of the monoliths is named Poseidon after the Greek god of the sea and stretches over 60 meters.

Meanwhile, just northeast of the tower is a cliff with short bursts of activity. researchers at the University of Washington to describe where the vents ‘weep’ with liquid to produce “delicate, multi-tipped carbonate clusters that protrude like the fingers of raised hands.”

Unfortunately, it’s not just scientists that this unusual terrain calls for.

Poland in 2018. won the rights To mine in the deep sea around the Lost City. While there are no valuable resources to be explored in the actual thermal area itself, the destruction of the city’s environment can have unintended consequences.

The scientists warn that any plume or discharge triggered by mining could easily wash away the extraordinary habitat.

Some experts therefore call for The Lost City will be placed on the World Heritage list to preserve its natural wonder before it’s too late.

For tens of thousands of years, the Lost City has stood as a testament to the enduring power of life.

It would be like us destroying it.

About the author


Leave a Comment