Sciencegeek Advent Calendar Extravaganza! – Day 12

by David Ng

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FROST FLOWERS: CHRISTMAS-LIKE CAPSULES OF BIODIVERSITY
Photos by Jeff Bowman and Jody Deming

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“In a study combining oceanography, microbiology, and planetary sciences, NSF-funded researchers at the University of Washington have discovered fascinating new aspects of so-called “frost flowers” that grow on Arctic ice fields. These delicate ice structures turn out to host microbes that survive to extremely cold temperatures, informing us about the limits of life when we search on other ice-covered planets and moons for possible extraterrestrial life. They also produce chemicals such as formaldehyde that may give clues about the origin of life on the early Earth.”

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University of Washington, IGERT. Via Colossal.

(see more of Popperfont’s Sciencegeek Advent Calendar Extravanganza here)

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