Helen Hill | Darwin Project
It’s been a decade since the inception of the MIT Darwin Project, an alliance between physical oceanographers, biogeochemists and marine microbiologists at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). The goal of Darwin remains to couple state of the art physical models of global ocean circulation with biogeochemistry and genome-informed models of microbial processes to understand the interplay between different elements of the marine ecosystem leading to observed balances between physiology and the marine environment. Continue reading
Look out for the Darwin team, sharing their work at this year’s Ocean Sciences conference taking place February 21-26 in New Orleans, Louisianna. Continue reading
Read this story at oceans.mit.edu
Tara Oceans, an international consortium of researchers that explored the world’s oceans in hopes of learning more about one of its smallest inhabitants, reported their initial findings this week in a special issue of Science. Plankton are vital to life on Earth—they absorb carbon dioxide, generate nearly half of the oxygen we breathe, break down waste, and are a cornerstone of the marine food chain. Now, new research indicates the diminutive creatures are not only more diverse than previously thought, but also profoundly affected by their environment. Continue reading
Villar, E., Farrant, G.K., Follows, M.J., et al, 2015, Environmental characteristics of Agulhas rings affect interocean plankton transport. Science, Vol. 348 no. 6237, doi: 10.1126/science.1261447
In their new competition theory paper, appearing in the 2014 issue of Biogeosciences, Dutkiewicz et al examine the sensitivity of the biogeography of nitrogen fixers to a warming climate and increased aeolian iron deposition in the context of a global earth system model. Continue reading
Phytoplankton are an extremely diverse set of floating, microscopic organisms, which are freely transported by water movements (current, eddies, etc.) and make up the base of the oceanic food web. This work, published in the September issue of Limnology & Oceanography: Fluids & Environments, explores how their diversity is affected by dispersal by different scales of motions in the ocean. Continue reading
Levy, M., O. Jahn, S. Dutkiewicz, and M.J. Follows (2014), Phytoplankton diversity and community structure affected by oceanic disperal and mesoscale turbulence, Limnology and Oceanography: Fluids and Environment, 4, 67-84, doi: 10.1215/21573689-2768549.
Leaving the cold of a New England February behind, the Darwin team will be in full attendance at this year’s Ocean Sciences conference taking place February 23-28 in Honolulu, Hawaii.
Clayton, S., S. Dutkiewicz , O. Jahn, and M.J. Follows (2013), Ocean eddies and dispersal maintain phytoplankton diversity, Limnology and Oceanography, Fluids and Environments, Volume 3: 182–197, doi: 10.1215/21573689-2373515
For the past several months, Principal Research Scientist Stephanie Dutkiewicz and researcher Oliver Jahn have been consultants for staff at San Francisco’s Exploratorium science museum on the development of a new and exciting interactive exhibit designed to provide a hands-on experience with microscopic sea life.