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Encyclopedia of Ocean Sciences: Second Edition

Hydrothermal Vent Ecology

Publication ,  Chapter
Van Dover, CL
January 1, 2001

Most of the ocean floor is covered with a thick layer of sediment and is populated by sparse and minute, mud-dwelling and mud-consuming invertebrates. In striking contrast, the volcanic basalt pavement of mid-ocean ridges hosts hydrothermal vents and their attendant lush communities of large invertebrates that ultimately rely on inorganic chemicals for their nutrition. Vents themselves are sustained by tectonic forces that fracture the basalt and allow sea water to penetrate deep within the ocean crust, and by volcanism, which generates the hot rock at depth that strips sea water of oxygen and magnesium. The hot rock gives up to the nascent vent fluid a variety of metals, especially copper, iron, and zinc, as well as reduced compounds such as hydrogen sulfide and methane. The vent fluid, thermally buoyant, rises to exit as hot springs on the seafloor.

Duke Scholars

DOI

ISBN

9780123744739

Publication Date

January 1, 2001

Start / End Page

151 / 158
 

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Van Dover, C. L. (2001). Hydrothermal Vent Ecology. In Encyclopedia of Ocean Sciences: Second Edition (pp. 151–158). https://doi.org/10.1016/B978-012374473-9.00104-1
Van Dover, C. L. “Hydrothermal Vent Ecology.” In Encyclopedia of Ocean Sciences: Second Edition, 151–58, 2001. https://doi.org/10.1016/B978-012374473-9.00104-1.
Van Dover CL. Hydrothermal Vent Ecology. In: Encyclopedia of Ocean Sciences: Second Edition. 2001. p. 151–8.
Van Dover, C. L. “Hydrothermal Vent Ecology.” Encyclopedia of Ocean Sciences: Second Edition, 2001, pp. 151–58. Scopus, doi:10.1016/B978-012374473-9.00104-1.
Van Dover CL. Hydrothermal Vent Ecology. Encyclopedia of Ocean Sciences: Second Edition. 2001. p. 151–158.
Journal cover image

DOI

ISBN

9780123744739

Publication Date

January 1, 2001

Start / End Page

151 / 158