PI: Rinat Gabitov (Mississippi State University)
Host: Karyn L. Rogers (Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute)
Amount: $2,500.00
Award Dates: May 15, 2014 — September 15, 2014


Biologically-mediated CaCO3 precipitation widely occurs in aquatic systems and is often directly linked to the metabolic activity of microorganisms, which could significantly affect the local environment. An example is oxidation of methane and reduction of sulfate mediated by a consortium of Bacteria and Archaea. In order to investigate geochemistry of CaCO3 precipitated abiotically and under microbial activity experimental work was initiated.  The abiotic experiments were performed at different temperatures and pressures (nitrogen and nitrogen-methane mixture).  Further geochemical analyses will allow evaluating of the effect of total pressure and methane partial pressure on the geochemistry of CaCO3. Sulfate reducing bacterial (Desulfovibrio salexigens) was successfully cultured and precipitation experiments on microbially mediated CaCO3 are in progress. This work is relevant to C-DEBI Research Theme I (Activity in the Deep Subseafloor Biosphere: function & rates of global biogeochemical processes) because carbonate growth rate is linked to microbial activity and the rate of methane oxidation.