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Lost City Expedition: Mission


April 21 to May 22, 2003

Image Courtesy of National Geographic
Please join us on our expedition aboard the research vessel Atlantis to the Lost City Hydrothermal Field on the Mid-Atlantic Ridge. Using the submersible Alvin, and remotely operated vehicle ABE, we will explore in detail for the first time the Lost City vent field, which was discovered in December 2000.

During this voyage, we will share with you deep-sea imagery and the new discoveries we make as we revisit this remarkable place where "forests" of limestone chimneys tower 180 feet above the seafloor.The field is a place of stunning, ghostly beauty with white shimmering towers that host dense microbial communities. The microbes live in complete darkness and thrive off of gases released from rocks formed several miles beneath the seafloor. The Lost City Field is unlike any hydrothermal vent system previously discovered in the world's oceans, yet it may yield new insights into the first hydrothermal systems on Earth and the life that they supported.