What is the Sound of One Hydrothermal Vent Venting?

And if no one is around will it still make a sound? Crone and cronies et al. on the open access PLoS One explore the Sound Generated by Mid-Ocean Ridge Black Smoker Hydrothermal Vents. Although theory predicted sound from venting smokers, current thinking was that they were actual silent. But they’re not! Indeed smokers “radiate significant acoustic energy.” And the coolest part (yes I am a biologist), “Vent sounds will provide researchers with new ways to study flow through sulfide structures, and may provide some local organisms with behavioral or navigational cues.You can listen to the hydrothermal vent diatribe here.

Typical hour-average power spectra derived from the two vent recordings, and the ambient noise recordings. Sharp peaks on the ambient spectra are associated with a nearby research vessel. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0000133.g003


Dr. M (1801 Posts)

Craig McClain is the Executive Director of the Lousiana University Marine Consortium. He has conducted deep-sea research for 20 years and published over 50 papers in the area. He has participated in and led dozens of oceanographic expeditions taken him to the Antarctic and the most remote regions of the Pacific and Atlantic. Craig’s research focuses on how energy drives the biology of marine invertebrates from individuals to ecosystems, specifically, seeking to uncover how organisms are adapted to different levels of carbon availability, i.e. food, and how this determines the kinds and number of species in different parts of the oceans. Additionally, Craig is obsessed with the size of things. Sometimes this translated into actually scientific research. Craig’s research has been featured on National Public Radio, Discovery Channel, Fox News, National Geographic and ABC News. In addition to his scientific research, Craig also advocates the need for scientists to connect with the public and is the founder and chief editor of the acclaimed Deep-Sea News (http://deepseanews.com/), a popular ocean-themed blog that has won numerous awards. His writing has been featured in Cosmos, Science Illustrated, American Scientist, Wired, Mental Floss, and the Open Lab: The Best Science Writing on the Web.

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