Near the top of the underwater mountain west of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge, a rugged land rises from the darkness.
Their creamy carbonate walls and pale blue columns appear in the light of the remote vehicles employed to explore.
They range in height from small piles the size of toads tools to a large monolith standing 60 meters (almost 200 feet) high. This is a lost city.
Discovered by scientists in 2000, more than 700 meters (2,300 feet) below the surface; The lost hydrothermal vent is the longest known rock environment in the ocean. Nothing else like it has ever been found.
For at least 120,000 years and possibly longer, the mantle in this part of the world has been uplifted with seawater carrying hydrogen, methane, and other dissolved gases to spill into the ocean.
In the cracks and vents of the field, hydrocarbons feed new microbial communities even without the presence of oxygen.
Stove spews gases as hot as 40 ° C * 91 °F They are home to plenty of snails and crustaceans. Larger animals such as crabs, shrimps, urchins, and eels are rare, but still present.
Despite the extreme nature of the environment, life seems to be thriving, and researchers believe it is worth our attention and protection.
While other hydrothermal fields like this probably exist elsewhere in the world’s oceans, this is the only one we’ve been able to find so far operated by remote vehicles.
The hydrocarbons produced by the city’s vents were not produced from atmospheric dioxide or sunlight, but from chemical reactions on the sea floor.
Because hydrocarbons are the building blocks of life, this leaves open the possibility that life was born in a habitat like this one. And not only on our planet.
“This is an example of the type of ecosystem that could be active on Enceladus or Europa right this second,” said microbiologist William Brazelton. Smithsonian in 2018, referring to Saturn and Jupiter’s moon.
“And perhaps Mars before.”
Unlike the underwater volcanic vents called black smokers, which have also been named as the first possible habitat, the ecosystem of the lost city does not depend on the magma tide.
Black smokers produce mainly iron and sulfur-rich minerals, while the waste city’s chimneys produce up to 100 times more hydrogen and methane.
The calcified smokestacks are also much larger than the black smokers, which suggests they were active longer.
The tallest of the monoliths is named after Neptune, the Greek god of the sea, and stretches more than 60 meters high.
Just the tower to the north, meanwhile, there are rocks with short bursts of activity. Researchers at the University of Washington describe the vents here as “weeping” with fluid to produce “slim, multi-toothed carbon clusters that extend outward like the fingers of a palm’s hand.”
Unfortunately, they are not the only ones who have learned from unusual places.
In 2018 it was announced that Poland had taken rights to the deep sea around the Lost City. Since there are no valuable resources to drop the chocolate on the field itself, the destruction of the city’s surroundings could not be unknown.
This is a lost city, a sublime ecosystem in the middle of the North Atlantic. It is completely unique, since life is found nowhere else on Earth. And if someone wanted to destroy it? There was nothing you could do about it. No laws. There is no consequence. Welcome to the high maria… pic.twitter.com/mdG5wOsr5h
— Open Ocean Exploration (@RebeccaRHelm) August 22, 2022
Any plume or drop, triggered by metals, could easily wash over the sign’s habitation, experts warn.
Therefore, some experts ask that the lost city should be listed as a world site, in order to preserve the wonder of the late natural world.
For ten thousand years, the lost city stood as a testament to eternal life.
It would be like us to lose.
An earlier version of this article was published in August 2022.
#lost #city #deep #ocean