News for January 19, 2012
Major NSF Grant Will Fund Research on the Microbial World of Seamounts
Senior Research Scientist David Emerson has received a $603,631 grant from the National Science Foundation
for a 3-year project to investigate the microbial ecosystems of iron-rich hydrothermal vents in the deep ocean.
The project will examine factors that determine the structure of ancient microbial communities associated with
underwater volcanoes. Understanding these microbes will help researchers discover how bacteria influence the
planet’s biogeochemical cycles, their role in the changing environments of the Earth’s past, and how these life
forms may be used as microscopic machines for a range of applications in the future.
Iron-oxidizing Mariprofundus ferrooxydans bacteria from Loihi Seamount off the coast of Hawaii. Photo by David Emerson.
Results from the Patagonian Shelf Expedition
The Marine Ecology Progress Series journal has featured a paper by Alex Poulton (of the National
Oceanography Centre in Southhampton, UK) and co-authored by Senior Research Scientist Barney Balch as
the lead story in its December 20, 2011 issue (vol. 443:1-17, 2011). “Biometry of detached
Emiliania huxleyi coccoliths along the Patagionan Shelf” describes the results of an expedition
led by Balch to the Southern Hemisphere in December 2008. Researchers examined the associations
of E. huxleyi, an abundant species of calcifying phytoplankton (and one of the major producers and
exporters of calcium carbonate in the ocean) with nutrients, temperature, light, and ocean acidity.
They also describe the presence of several distinct variants of the species that are found in different
water masses, illustrating that the ecology of this globally-important plant is more complex than
previously thought. Other co-authors of the paper are Jeremy R. Young, from University College London;
and Nicholas R. Bates from the Bermuda Institute of Ocean Sciences.
Scanning electron micrograph of coccoliths and coccospheres of Emiliania huxleyi Morphotypes A (orange) and B/C (blue), which have different coccolith calcite contents. Image by Helen Smith, National Oceanography Centre.
Thank You for the Incredible
Wave of Support! You did it!
Photo by Jeff Lawrence.
Bigelow Laboratory’s generous supporters have met the $50,000 Annual Fund challenge made last
fall by Bigelow trustee Bob Healing and his wife Marge. By December 27, more than 93 donors met
the $50,000 challenge with new or increased gifts to the Annual Fund.
But the good news continues—after reaching the challenge, a remarkable number of new and increased
gifts kept coming in.?The Healings were so impressed that they extended their challenge by providing
an additional $25,000 to match additional qualifying gifts.
Thanks to the tremendous response of our dedicated donors, the Laboratory raised over $296,000 for
its Annual Fund between July 1 and December 31—an enormous increase over last year. As 2012 begins,
additional challenge funds are still available to be matched by new and increased gifts before June
30. If you haven’t been part of the Healing Challenge yet, it’s not too late!
These increased funds will support transformational initiatives to expand our leading edge,
twenty-first century ocean science institution in Maine. They will help ensure the Laboratory’s
status as a highly respected player in the world oceanographic research community, contribute to
Maine’s growing innovation economy, create jobs, and help harness the ocean’s enormous potential
to benefit society.
All Healing Challenge participants will be welcomed to a special reception at the new facilities
in East Boothbay this summer.
Thanks to you, Bigelow Laboratory’s future looks brighter than ever!
Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences …exploring the world’s ocean, from microbes to global ecosystems
2012 Summer Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) Program Application Period Begins
Photo by Rebecca Fowler.
The Laboratory’s intensive, ten-week residency program Gulf of Maine
and the World Ocean is scheduled to run from June 3 to August 10, 2012, and is open to
undergraduates from the United States interested in conducting independent research with
guidance from a scientist mentor. Applications are being accepted from January 15 to March
1, 2012. Eight undergraduates will be selected for the 2012 program, and will receive a
stipend, free housing, food allowance, and funds for travel to and from Bigelow Laboratory.
For more information, visit the Laboratory’s REU webpage.
First Day Walk: Perfect Weather and a Big Crowd
Photo by Joyce McBeth.
Over 80 people from the Boothbay peninsula and surrounding mid-coast
Maine communities participated in Boothbay Region Land Trust’s (BRLT) January 1, 2012 hike (above)
from Barrett’s Park in Boothbay Harbor to the Laboratory’s new East Boothbay campus. The hike
was led by BRLT volunteer Rupert Neily, and culminated in refreshments in lobby of the newly
completed Bigelow Center for Blue Biotechnology (below), the first wing of the Laboratory’s Ocean
Science and Education Campus.
Photo by Mike Pander.
Calling Bigelow Laboratory
The start of our move to the new Ocean Science and Education Campus last month was also
the beginning of a new telephone system for the Laboratory. As of a week ago, our new main
phone number became (202) 747-3255. The new fax number is (202) 747-3257. All staff members
have been assigned individual extension numbers; a directory of these (to connect directly
to a person or to voicemail) may be accessed through the main number. For callers in Maine,
the 202 area code + number is not a long distance call. Talk to you soon!
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Join the Bigelow Discovery Team!
Photo by Rebecca Fowler.
Our donors provide essential support for key research, education, and outreach
initiatives, and help us forge new partnerships for a sustainable future. Donate Now.
Bigelow Laboratory Board of Trustees
David Coit, Chair
Richard Morrell, Vice Chair
Trustees’ Advisory Board