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Virtual Field Trip: Ship To Shore Exploring the Deep Sea with the R/V Falkor

  Panelist     Classroom Resources       Science Standards   Recorded Event

The deep sea is home to a variety of understudied, otherworldly ecosystems that are in need of human understanding if they are to have any protection from encroaching deep sea fishing and mining activities. These systems support the global marine environment through habitat creation, nutrient cycling, and maintenance of biodiversity. However, they also happen to be found in areas with rich stores of oil, gas, minerals, and potential new pharmaceuticals. Understanding what ecosystem processes generate these key services is fundamental to their protection.

Join us as we virtually board the R/V Falkor and learn more about their research and new discoveries, both positive and negative. 


The Pacific margin of Costa Rica is an area of seamount subduction where methane seeps, thermal anomalies, and non-subducting seamounts intersect and presumably interact. Despite several research expeditions to this region, scientists still know very little about how these types of ecosystems may be connected to communities in the rest of the oceans including the soft sediment background communities and deep-sea corals. To characterize these interactions, Dr. Erik Cordes, from Temple University, and his team of interdisciplinary researchers will use a framework coupling benthic sampling, near-bottom chemical sensor, and photographic profiling, along with vertical characterizations through the water column from deep to shallow.

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