Hydrothermal Vent Biota Lab

Vent communities lab exercise

by Montgomery Taylor

Online Laboratory Exercise: Comparison and Interpretation of Hydrothermal Vent Biota Abundance on Axial Seamount

Using hydrothermal vent chimney mosaics*, Montgomery created the initial draft of a lab exercise for college-age students on hydrothermal vent biota.  Working with her advisor, Dr. Leslie Sautter, she designed the lab as an Online Concept Module (OCM) used to assess a Marine Geology student’s ability to identify biota on a given vent, process the data quantitatively, and answer thought-provoking questions in comparing 4 separate vent chimneys from Axial Seamount vent fields.  This work is a portion of Montgomery's Senior thesis which will include incorporating hydrothermal vent video with presentations for elementary, middle, and high school students.  She will also analyze the vent sulfide samples collected on the VISIONS '13 cruise. Her ultimate goal is to get students excited about hydrothermal vent systems and ocean science. She hopes that such education outreach will plant a seed in young minds that ocean science is a field for them to consider as a career.

*Mosaics were created by Mitchell Elend, using ROV HD video screen grabs from previous VISIONS expeditions.

(more to come...)