Seafloor Chemistry: Life's building blocks made inorganically | Science News

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Seafloor Chemistry: Life's building blocks made inorganically

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12:22pm, January 30, 2008

Hydrocarbons in the fluids spewing from a set of hydrothermal vents on the seafloor of the central Atlantic were produced by inorganic chemical reactions within the ocean crust, scientists suggest. The finding holds possibly profound implications for the origins of life.

The Lost City hydrothermal field, which sits on the side of an undersea mountain about 2,500 kilometers east of Bermuda, was discovered in December 2000 (SN: 7/14/01, p. 21). Unlike most hydrothermal vents, which crop up alon

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