A publication for the faculty, staff, administrators, and friends of California State University, Chico
September 8, 2005 Volume 36 / Number 1


Up Front

Renowned Oceanographer Will Speak Tonight

Oceanographer Melanie Holland will deliver two lectures on campus as part of a National Science Foundation (NSF) Distinguished Lecture Series titled “From Mantle to Microbe: Exploring the Links Between Planetary Renewal and Life in the Deep Ocean.”

The first lecture, “Seafloor Volcanoes, Surly Bison and the Ecology of Life in Boiling Water,” is tonight, Sept. 8, at 7:30 PM in Ayres 120. The second lecture, “The Mid-Ocean Ridge Subseafloor: Prime Microbial Real Estate,” is especially for the scientific community, and will be held Friday, Sept. 9, at 4 PM, also in Ayres 120.

The Departments of Biological, Geoscience and Environmental Sciences are jointly sponsoring Holland’s visit with a grant from the Ridge 2000 Program. The NSF supports the program to explore the earth’s oceanic spreading ridges.

Holland, a faculty research associate in the Department of Geological Sciences at Arizona State University, investigates the interaction between biology and chemistry in geological systems. Her current research at terrestrial and marine hot springs combines geochemistry, microbiology, and molecular biology.

Holland received her bachelor’s degree in biology from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, She received her doctorate from the University of Washington.

She gathers data at hydrothermal vent sites along the Juan de Fuca Ridge on research cruises with piloted submersibles. Lately, her field expeditions have expanded to include terrestrial hot springs at Yellowstone National Park.

The Ridge 2000 Program researchers are working toward an integrated picture of the ocean’s dynamic systems, the crust of the earth’s mantle, and overlying ocean. An energy transfer takes place in these areas. The transfer allows life to be sustained without sunlight at the ocean bottom.

The NSF Distinguished Lecture Series brings the latest of this research to campuses and communities across the nation.