20-EPN2-071: Deposition of organic matter as a factor controlling microbial colonisation of analogue terrestrial surfaces
January 22, 2024

20-EPN2-071: Deposition of organic matter as a factor controlling microbial colonisation of analogue terrestrial surfaces

Tina Santl-Temkiv (Aarhus University, Denmark) to TA1 – Iceland Field Sites, MATIS
Dates of visit: 29-30 June 2023

This project was designed to improve the understanding of biosignatures in analogue terrestrial surfaces, volcanic rocks, that result as a consequence of microbial colonisation and weathering. During the visit, the automatic medium-volume sampling system PNS DM — modified to run on batteries charged with solar panels — was assembled, tested, and calibrated in the laboratory of Matis.

Due to a delay in shipment of the solar panels, the installation of the system at the field site could not be performed but will be finalised by the host institution in the near future. As a part of the visit, the area of the Fagradalsfjall volcano was visited and the location where the sampling system will be installed was discussed. Once the sampler system will be installed in proximity of the Fagradalsfjall volcano crater, aerosol samples will be collected continuously for a year along with replicate rock samples in order to investigate the impact of aerosol deposition on rock microbial community assembly, using microbial, chemical and physical analysis. This will be performed in collaboration between the team of Prof. Viggó Þór Marteinsson and the team of Assoc. Prof. Tina Santl-Temkiv and will result in greatly improved understanding of colonisation, community assembly, and biosignature emergence in analogue terrestrial surfaces.

Read the full scientific report with kind permission by Tina Santl-Temkiv.

Banner image: Iceland’s Fagradalsfjall volcano. Credit: CC BY-SA 4.0 Mokslo Sriuba


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