Message from the Director:
Our annual call for research and fellowship proposals is posted! We continue to support research grants and graduate student and postdoctoral fellowships that will significantly advance C-DEBI’s central research agenda to investigate the subseafloor biosphere deep in marine sediment and oceanic crust, including on “expeditions of opportunity.” C-DEBI welcomes proposals from applicants who would enhance diversity in C-DEBI and STEM fields. The deadline for this call is December 1, 2017. Note, there is no call for education grants this year. I look forward to continued, strong engagement by the community through our many C-DEBI programs and activities.
As the culminating program for the North Pond field program – a major field site within the C-DEBI portfolio – a team of scientists is heading back to the subseafloor “CORK” observatory network in October to assess the deep biosphere living in young, cool, and oxic basaltic oceanic crust. This observatory network was installed in 2011 during IODP Expedition 336 led by former C-DEBI Director Katrina Edwards. C-DEBI scientists led by Executive Committee member Dr. Geoff Wheat will be visiting the observatories with the ROV Jason to collect pristine subsurface fluid samples and finally recover the sensors and incubation experiments that have been cooking in the subsurface for the past 6 years. This return mission is funded by the National Science Foundation, with add-on funding for fluid sampling to look at microbe-carbon and virus interactions. Cruise participants will also be running a ship-to-shore outreach program. Follow #NorthPond2017 on Twitter for the latest updates.
In this summer’s Global Environmental Microbiology (GEM) course and Community College Cultivation Cohort (C4) REU, we had another enthusiastic and bright class of undergraduate students that we will be introducing you to in our newsletters, sharing their stories and aspirations. We are proud to have been a step in their scientific pathway. Please keep your eye out for their spotlights!