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Plate Tectonics and Life


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https://www.sciencenews.org/article/earth-plate-tectonics-volcanoes-earthquakes-faults   

Shaking Up Earth" by Carolyn Gramling.  (from Science News,  January 16, 2021)

"Earth is the only known world with plate tectonics.  It's also the only one known to harbor life." 

It is a long article about plate tectonics and the history of its discovery and proof.  But, the part I want to point out is "Crucible of Life" about half-way down the screen.  I have never heard this before and do not know if it is a new idea or not.  The thought is that life "might have" or 'perhaps could have"  started with the movement of plate tectonics.  Subduction plates grinding stones and with the heating releasing carbon.  From there we acquire carbon dioxide and other nutrients necessary for life.  But thrown into the midst of that talk is a contradiction saying life may have existed before plate tectonics.

Has anyone heard more about this?  Or, if you have read the article, what are your thoughts about it?  hazelm

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5 hours ago, hazelm said:

The thought is that life "might have" or 'perhaps could have"  started with the movement of plate tectonics.  Subduction plates grinding stones and with the heating releasing carbon.  From there we acquire carbon dioxide and other nutrients necessary for life

Robert Hazen explains how subduction may have contributes to abiogenesis.  There is now a whole discipline devoted on "deep earth biosphere".

Abstract

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Twenty-five years ago this month, Thomas Gold published a seminal manuscript suggesting the presence of a “deep, hot biosphere” in the Earth’s crust. Since this publication, a considerable amount of attention has been given to the study of deep biospheres, their role in geochemical cycles, and their potential to inform on the origin of life and its potential outside of Earth. Overwhelming evidence now supports the presence of a deep biosphere ubiquitously distributed on Earth in both terrestrial and marine settings. Furthermore, it has become apparent that much of this life is dependent on lithogenically sourced high-energy compounds to sustain productivity. A vast diversity of uncultivated microorganisms has been detected in subsurface environments, and we show that H2, CH4, and CO feature prominently in many of their predicted metabolisms.

https://www.pnas.org/content/114/27/6895.

 

Deep carbon science explores the quantities, movements, forms, and origins of carbon in Earth.

Quantities

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How much carbon does Earth contain, and where is it?

DCO scientists explore the quantities of carbon in Earth by studying the planet's principal deep carbon reservoirs as well as the total amount of carbon it contains. Some deep carbon scientists look for places where significant carbon can be stored, from mineralogical to regional scales. Other d
eep carbon scientists explore the quantities of carbon stored in the deep biosphere by studying the nature and extent of the deep microbial and viral biosphere in Earth's continental crust and seafloor.

 

 

Deep Carbon Cycle

 
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What forms of carbon exist within Earth?

DCO scientists study the forms of carbon within Earth by exploring novel carbon structures and chemical reactions through observations, experiments, and theoretical models. Deep carbon science is improving our understanding of the physical and chemical behavior of carbon at the extremely high temperatures and pressures found in the interior of Earth and other planets. Discovery of novel forms of carbon at extreme conditions have significant implications for our understanding of Earth, as well as applications for advanced materials and technologies.

 

 

Novel carbon compound

https://deepcarbon.net/dco/deep-carbon-science

Edited by write4u
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