IFE / URI-IAO / UW / Lost City Science Party / NOAA / OAR / OER
Calcium carbonate spire in the Lost City hydrothermal field
At the Lost City hydrothermal field in the Atlantic Ocean, the reaction between seawater and oceanic crust produces calcium carbonate spires up to 60 meters tall. Today, these alkaline vents host diverse biological communities, but roughly 4 billion years ago, they may have been the location for the emergence of life itself.
This image is in the public domain.
Original image data dated on or about July 1, 2005