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The ocean floor is the largest solid interface on the planet. At and within the ocean floor, geological, physical, biological and chemical processes interact, thus influencing the climate system, the global carbon cycle, and biological productivity in the world ocean. While the ocean floor hosts unique ecosystems, such as chemosynthetic communities thriving at hot vents and cold seeps, or cold-water corals existing without light in the deep sea, it also incorporates an invaluable archive of Earth's history, as environmental information is continuously recorded in the properties of accumulating sediment particles. As yet, only a tiny fraction of the ocean floor has been scientifically investigated. Hence, we still know too little about ocean-floor processes to compile detailed global mass budgets, but this knowledge is essential for understanding the role of the ocean within the entire Earth system.

In the Framework of the Cluster of Excellence “The Ocean Floor – Earth’s Uncharted Interface” hosted by MARUM at the University of Bremen, we organize an international symposium series on ocean-floor processes. The symposium brings together international experts in the field with members of the Cluster, providing a platform for the exchange and discussion of scientific results about ocean-floor processes. We plan to hold the symposium with varying topics every two years and expect about 70 participants, ranging from early career to advanced researchers. The oral program will take place throughout as plenary session. Presentations are by invitation only with sufficient time for discussion after each presentation. The oral program is complemented by poster sessions with each poster being on display for the entire duration of the symposium.

The topic of the first symposium will be “Understanding element fluxes – processes and budgets” and will take place from October 9-12, 2022 at the University of Bremen.

Scientific Themes

The overarching topic on understanding element fluxes and the underlying processes and budgets the symposium is organized along the following themes:

  • From ocean to sediments
  • Geodynamic controls
  • Geosphere-Biosphere Interactions