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Chemistry

This category contains 84 posts

Protist Factories: A Potential Way to Make Gold and Silver

Modern research is investigating the ability of organisms to make valuable products for us. A multi-national team examined the ability of a species of protist to make important lipid molecules as well as silver and gold nanoparticles, and the results were quite exciting! Daniel SpeerHey! I’m a PhD student at the University of California, Davis […]

Fresh(water) (P)Rinse of (not)Bel Air: The Decreasing Salinity of the Japan Sea

A team of scientists from Japan have investigated the decreasing salinity of the Sea of Japan. Let’s see what they found! Daniel SpeerHey! I’m a PhD student at the University of California, Davis studying biophysics. I previously studied organic chemistry (B.S.) at the College of William and Mary. Currently, I investigate the physical responses of […]

Living Life to the Fullest: Enzyme Activity of Two African Mussel Species

Every day, our body performs a plethora of activities. We breathe, exercise, eat food, think, and socialize. Behind all of these processes is a legion of very small molecular machines at work. These little machines, called proteins, can be greatly affected by the health of their environment. How do they change in response to pollution? […]

CRASH!: A Chemical Study of Sea Spray from Breaking Ocean Waves

With every wave that crashes on the beach, little particles known as sea spray fly up into the air. Because of their contents, they can help form clouds in the atmosphere. So we can ask as the ocean acidifies, what happens to sea spray? Daniel SpeerHey! I’m a PhD student at the University of California, […]

Lunar Power Over Methane Emissions

Solid methane hydrates in the Arctic Ocean are slowly leaking methane into the atmosphere, and a team of scientists has discovered that the moon may have a small role in this process. But how? Amanda SemlerI’m a PhD candidate in Earth System Science at Stanford University, and I study how microbes in deep ocean sediments […]

Smog can be a Bog: A Story about Iron in the Air and Ocean

Have you ever wondered where smog goes? A group of scientists investigated where particles of iron start and end up, and what they found out is quite interesting! Daniel SpeerHey! I’m a PhD student at the University of California, Davis studying biophysics. I previously studied organic chemistry (B.S.) at the College of William and Mary. […]

Does history repeat itself?: Investigating the Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum

Everyone knows that Earth’s climate changes. With the rapid increases in human-influenced global warming and ocean acidification, we need to be able to model and predict the future. What if we could use the past? A similar time period called the Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum (PETM) exhibited similar climate changes. Scientists have investigated the PETM and […]

Dust may feed more life in a warmer ocean

Just as our bodies need iron to stay healthy, ocean microbes also need iron to grow. Iron in the ocean largely comes from dust blowing from land, getting sprinkled over the surface ocean and dissolving in seawater. And ocean temperature may be a key factor that controls how much dust gets dissolved into the ocean […]

How does mercury end up in our seafood? (Guest Post by Patricia Myer)

This is a guest post by Patricia Myer. Patricia is a third-year Chemical Oceanography PhD student at the University of Connecticut. She received her BA in Environmental Science from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in 2017. Her current research is focused on the environmental factors affecting bioaccumulation of methylmercury into plankton. Diana FontaineI am a PhD student […]

If you can’t stand the heat, get out of the kitchen: An analysis of phytoplankton with changing ocean temperature

If you went to the beach and the water is cold, would you jump in? The same questions pertain to very small creatures called phytoplankton off the coast of Mexico. A group of scientists recently studied the behavior of phytoplankton as the ocean’s temperature due to large weather events like El Niño and found some […]

A boat pulled out f the water and standing on land exposing the propellers and hull which are covered in various fouling organisms.

Too Slick to Stick

Have you ever walked down a dock to look at the boats? How about under the boat? The sides? Chances are you’ve probably seen a few things growing on the boat wherever it is submerged underwater such as barnacles or algae. This is known as biofouling, the unwanted accumulation of plants and animals on a […]

How do greenhouse gases move?: An updated study on nitrous oxide exchange from the ocean to the atmosphere

Our atmosphere is composed of different gases like oxygen, nitrogen, and carbon dioxide. These gases can absorb energy, sent from the sun, reflecting off of the Earth’s surface. While scientists can measure and estimate their amounts in the air, gases have the ability to move between the ocean and the atmosphere. This behavior, while interesting, […]

Ocean acidification and baby “squidlife” crises?

Ocean acidification has been known to cause problems for marine mollusks (like oysters and pteropods), because these animals have shells or hard parts that can weaken as acidity increases. There’s another mollusk though with eight arms and two tentacles that may have a larger bag of tricks with which to cope with acidity, but teasing […]

Superoxide: A Super Sink of Ocean Oxygen

Ever wondered how oxygen gets depleted in the ocean? A new study suggests that a significant fraction is transformed into superoxide – an intriguing molecule that biologists love to hate. Amanda SemlerI’m a PhD candidate in Earth System Science at Stanford University, and I study how microbes in deep ocean sediments produce and consume greenhouse […]

Deep Breathing Underwater

The Labrador Sea is one of the lungs of the ocean. A new study finds that it is taking an even deeper breath than expected—making it more vulnerable to climate change than thought. Emily ChuaI am a Ph.D. candidate at Boston University where I am developing an underwater instrument to study the coastal ocean.  I […]

A High-Flying Aquatic Robot

Inspired by the flying squid, researchers have built a robot that can launch itself from the water surface using water-reactive fuel. Emily ChuaI am a Ph.D. candidate at Boston University where I am developing an underwater instrument to study the coastal ocean.  I have a multi-disciplinary background in physics and oceanography (and some engineering), and […]

SURFO SPECIAL: Flame retardants: Not as friendly as we like to think

Jamillez Olmo Classen is a senior at the University of Puerto Rico at Arecibo, majoring in Technology in Industrial Chemical Process. This summer, she worked with Dr. Rainer Lohmann (advisor) and Dr. Jitka Becanova (mentor)  studying harmful chemicals and how to properly measure their concentrations in our water supply. Read on below to learn about her work! […]

Pteropods are Ptough: How one of the ocean’s most fragile creatures may cope with climate change

Climate change, due to the increase in atmospheric carbon dioxide from fossil fuel burning, is arguably the most important issue facing our planet. One of the most detrimental changes already in progress is the shifting pH of the world’s oceans, known as ocean acidification. Although the speed with which the planet is changing does not […]

Autonomous Under-ICE Vehicles

Seafloor exploration in areas of thick ice coverage has many obstacles. With careful planning and modifaction of AUV design and recovery methods, explorers are able to map and study the Gakkel Spreading Ridge 4000 meters below the thick Arctic Ice Pack. Anne M. HartwellHello, welcome to Oceanbites! My name is Annie, I’m a marine research […]

Deep Iron: Good for the Ocean’s Bones

: Iron isn’t just good for your body – it’s good for the ocean, too. While many studies focus on external sources of iron to the global ocean, Fitzsimmons et al. investigated iron sources coming from deep hydrothermal vents along midocean ridges, and how they might disperse iron and other metals vast distances through the […]

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    Happy Earth Day! Take some time today to do something for the planet and appreciate the ocean, which covers 71% of the Earth’s surface.  #EarthDay   #OceanAppreciation   #Oceanbites   #CoastalVibes   #CoastalRI 
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  • by oceanbites 6 months ago
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    Leveling up - did you know that crabs have a larval phase? These are both porcelain crabs, but the one on the right is the earlier stage. It’s massive spine makes it both difficult to eat and quite conspicuous in
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    This week for  #WriterWednesday  on  #Oceanbites  we are featuring Cierra Braga. Cierra works ultraviolet c (UVC) to discover how this light can be used to combat biofouling, or the growth of living things, on the hulls of ships. Here, you
  • by oceanbites 7 months ago
    This week for  #WriterWednesday  at  #Oceanbites  we are featuring Elena Gadoutsis  @haysailor  These photos feature her “favorite marine research so far: From surveying tropical coral reefs, photographing dolphins and whales, and growing my own algae to expose it to different
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  • by oceanbites 8 months ago
    This week for  #WriterWednesday  at  #Oceanbites  we are featuring Jiwoon Park with a little photographic help from Ryan Tabata at the University of Hawaii. When asked about her research, Jiwoon wrote “Just like we need vitamins and minerals to stay
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    This week for  #WriterWednesday  on  #Oceanbites  we are featuring  @riley_henning  According to Riley, ”I am interested in studying small things that make a big impact in the ocean. Right now for my master's research at the University of San Diego,
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    This week for  #WriterWednesday  at  #Oceanbites  we are featuring Gabby Stedman. Gabby is interested in interested in understanding how many species of small-bodied animals there are in the deep-sea and where they live so we can better protect them from
  • by oceanbites 8 months ago
    This week for  #WriterWednesday  at  #Oceanbites  we are featuring Shawn Wang! Shawn is “an oceanographer that studies ocean conditions of the past. I use everything from microfossils to complex computer models to understand how climate has changed in the past
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    Today we are highlighting some of our awesome new authors for  #WriterWednesday  Today we have Daniel Speer! He says, “I am driven to investigate the interface of biology, chemistry, and physics, asking questions about how organisms or biological systems respond
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    Here at Oceanbites we love long-term datasets. So much happens in the ocean that sometimes it can be hard to tell if a trend is a part of a natural cycle or actually an anomaly, but as we gather more
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    Have you ever seen a lobster molt? Because lobsters have exoskeletons, every time they grow they have to climb out of their old shell, leaving them soft and vulnerable for a few days until their new shell hardens. Young, small
  • by oceanbites 11 months ago
    A lot of zooplankton are translucent, making it much easier to hide from predators. This juvenile mantis shrimp was almost impossible to spot floating in the water, but under a dissecting scope it’s features really come into view. See the
  • by oceanbites 11 months ago
    This is a clump of Dead Man’s Fingers, scientific name Codium fragile. It’s native to the Pacific Ocean and is invasive where I found it on the east coast of the US. It’s a bit velvety, and the coolest thing
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    You’ve probably heard of jellyfish, but have you heard of salps? These gelatinous sea creatures band together to form long chains, but they can also fall apart and will wash up onshore like tiny gemstones that squish. Have you seen
  • by oceanbites 12 months ago
    Check out what’s happening on a cool summer research cruise! On the  #neslter  summer transect cruise, we deployed a tow sled called the In Situ Icthyoplankton Imaging System. This can take pictures of gelatinous zooplankton (like jellyfish) that would be
  • by oceanbites 1 year ago
    Did you know horseshoe crabs have more than just two eyes? In these juveniles you can see another set in the middle of the shell. Check out our website to learn about some awesome horseshoe crab research.  #oceanbites   #plankton   #horseshoecrabs 
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