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Meteor 84-1 (DARC-SEAS)

Deep subseafloor Archaea in the eastern Mediterranean, Marmara and Black seas: carbon cycle, life strategies, and role in sedimentary ecosystems

09.02.2011 - 22.02.2011 (Valletta/Malta - Istanbul)

Cruise track and working area with the locations where samples will be taken from the water column and the sediments

DARCLIFE project leader:

Prof. Dr. Kai-Uwe Hinrichs


+49 421 218-65700


+49 421 218-65715



MARUM I, 2600

Central objectives of this expedition are to constrain the factors that control the distribution of benthic archaea in marine sedimentary systems and determine their role within the marine carbon cycle. The proposed study area, consisting of the southern Black Sea, Sea of Marmara, and the eastern Mediterranean, provide an ideal set of environmentally diverse settings in close proximity. We selected five locations where highly variable hydrological, geochemical, and depositional regimes will allow us to study the distribution and carbon sources of benthic archaea and their affinities to various environmental conditions and to grow and enrich environmentally relevant cren- and euryarchaeota from different habitats. At all sites, excellent results of former investigations have already been published. The fresh material which is absolutely essential for our organic geochemical, geomicrobiological, and biogeochemical field investigations and lab experiments is planned to be taken with gravity corer, multicorer, in-situ pumps, and rosette sampler.

This expedition is directly connected with the interdisciplinary ERC research project 'Deep subsurface Archaea: carbon cycle, life strategies, and role in sedimentary ecosystems' (DARCLIFE).