WorldWideScience

Sample records for extant subsurface biospheres

  1. Characterization of a Subsurface Biosphere in a Massive Sulfide Deposits at Rio Tinto, Spain: Implications for Extant Life on Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stoker, C. R.; Stevens, T.; Amils, R.; Gomez-Elvira, J.; Rodriquez, N.; Gomez, F.; Gonzalez-Toril, E.; Aguilera, A.; Fernandez-Remolar, D.; Dunagan, S.

    2005-01-01

    The recent discovery of abundant sulfate minerals, particularly Jarosite by the Opportunity Rover at Sinus Merdiani on Mars has been interpreted as evidence for an acidic lake or sea on ancient Mars [1,2], since the mineral Jarosite is soluble in liquid water at pH above 4. The most likely mechanism to produce sufficient protons to acidify a large body of liquid water is near surface oxidation of pyrite rich deposits [3]. The acidic waters of the Rio Tinto, and the associated deposits of Hematite, Goethite, and Jarosite have been recognized as an important chemical analog to the Sinus Merdiani site on Mars [4]. The Rio Tinto is a river in southern Spain that flows 100 km from its source in the Iberian pyrite belt, one of the Earth s largest Volcanically Hosted Massive Sulfide (VHMS) provinces, into the Atlantic ocean. The river originates in artesian springs emanating from ground water that is acidified by the interaction with subsurface pyrite ore deposits. The Mars Analog Rio Tinto Experiment (MARTE) has been investigating the hypothesis that a subsurface biosphere exists at Rio Tinto living within the VHMS deposit living on chemical energy derived from sulfur and iron minerals. Reduced iron and sulfur might provide electron donors for microbial metabolism while in situ oxidized iron or oxidants entrained in recharge water might provide electron acceptors.

  2. Characterization of a Subsurface Biosphere in a Massive Sulfide Deposit At Rio Tinto, Spain: Implications For Extant Life On Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stoker, C. R.; Stevens, T.; Amils, R.; Gomez-Elvira, J.; Rodriguez, N.; Gomez, F.; Gonzalez-Toril, E.; Aguilera, A.; Fernandez-Remolar, D.; Dunagan, S.

    2005-01-01

    The recent discovery of abundant sulfate minerals, particularly Jarosite by the Opportunity Rover at Sinus Merdiani on Mars has been interpreted as evidence for an acidic lake or sea on ancient Mars [1,2], since the mineral Jarosite is soluble in liquid water at pH above 4. The most likely mechanism to produce sufficient protons to acidify a large body of liquid water is near surface oxidation of pyrite rich deposits [3]. The acidic waters of the Rio Tinto, and the associated deposits of Hematite, Goethite, and Jarosite have been recognized as an important chemical analog to the Sinus Merdiani site on Mars [4]. The Rio Tinto is a river in southern Spain that flows 100 km from its source in the Iberian pyrite belt, one of the Earth's largest Volcanically Hosted Massive Sulfide (VHMS) provinces, into the Atlantic ocean. The river originates in artesian springs emanating from ground water that is acidified by the interaction with subsurface pyrite ore deposits. The Mars Analog Rio Tinto Experiment (MARTE) has been investigating the hypothesis that a subsurface biosphere exists at Rio Tinto living within the VHMS deposit living on chemical energy derived from sulfur and iron minerals. Reduced iron and sulfur might provide electron donors for microbial metabolism while in situ oxidized iron or oxidants entrained in recharge water might provide electron acceptors.

  3. The Mojave vadose zone: a subsurface biosphere analogue for Mars.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abbey, William; Salas, Everett; Bhartia, Rohit; Beegle, Luther W

    2013-07-01

    If life ever evolved on the surface of Mars, it is unlikely that it would still survive there today, but as Mars evolved from a wet planet to an arid one, the subsurface environment may have presented a refuge from increasingly hostile surface conditions. Since the last glacial maximum, the Mojave Desert has experienced a similar shift from a wet to a dry environment, giving us the opportunity to study here on Earth how subsurface ecosystems in an arid environment adapt to increasingly barren surface conditions. In this paper, we advocate studying the vadose zone ecosystem of the Mojave Desert as an analogue for possible subsurface biospheres on Mars. We also describe several examples of Mars-like terrain found in the Mojave region and discuss ecological insights that might be gained by a thorough examination of the vadose zone in these specific terrains. Examples described include distributary fans (deltas, alluvial fans, etc.), paleosols overlain by basaltic lava flows, and evaporite deposits.

  4. Impact disruption and recovery of the deep subsurface biosphere

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Cockell, Charles S.; Voytek, Mary A.; Gronstal, Aaaron L

    2012-01-01

    the 35 million-year-old Chesapeake Bay impact structure, USA, with robust contamination control. Microbial enumerations displayed a logarithmic downward decline, but the different gradient, when compared to previously studied sites, and the scatter of the data are consistent with a microbiota influenced......Although a large fraction of the world's biomass resides in the subsurface, there has been no study of the effects of catastrophic disturbance on the deep biosphere and the rate of its subsequent recovery. We carried out an investigation of the microbiology of a 1.76 km drill core obtained from...

  5. Impact disruption and recovery of the deep subsurface biosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cockell, Charles S.; Voytek, Mary A.; Gronstal, Aaron L.; Finster, Kai; Kirshtein, Julie D.; Howard, Kieren; Reitner, Joachim; Gohn, Gregory S.; Sanford, Ward E.; Horton, J. Wright; Kallmeyer, Jens; Kelly, Laura; Powars, David S.

    2012-01-01

    Although a large fraction of the world's biomass resides in the subsurface, there has been no study of the effects of catastrophic disturbance on the deep biosphere and the rate of its subsequent recovery. We carried out an investigation of the microbiology of a 1.76 km drill core obtained from the ~35 million-year-old Chesapeake Bay impact structure, USA, with robust contamination control. Microbial enumerations displayed a logarithmic downward decline, but the different gradient, when compared to previously studied sites, and the scatter of the data are consistent with a microbiota influenced by the geological disturbances caused by the impact. Microbial abundance is low in buried crater-fill, ocean-resurge, and avalanche deposits despite the presence of redox couples for growth. Coupled with the low hydraulic conductivity, the data suggest the microbial community has not yet recovered from the impact ~35 million years ago. Microbial enumerations, molecular analysis of microbial enrichment cultures, and geochemical analysis showed recolonization of a deep region of impact-fractured rock that was heated to above the upper temperature limit for life at the time of impact. These results show how, by fracturing subsurface rocks, impacts can extend the depth of the biosphere. This phenomenon would have provided deep refugia for life on the more heavily bombarded early Earth, and it shows that the deeply fractured regions of impact craters are promising targets to study the past and present habitability of Mars.

  6. Is the genetic landscape of the deep subsurface biosphere affected by viruses?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anderson, Rika E; Brazelton, William J; Baross, John A

    2011-01-01

    Viruses are powerful manipulators of microbial diversity, biogeochemistry, and evolution in the marine environment. Viruses can directly influence the genetic capabilities and the fitness of their hosts through the use of fitness factors and through horizontal gene transfer. However, the impact of viruses on microbial ecology and evolution is often overlooked in studies of the deep subsurface biosphere. Subsurface habitats connected to hydrothermal vent systems are characterized by constant fluid flux, dynamic environmental variability, and high microbial diversity. In such conditions, high adaptability would be an evolutionary asset, and the potential for frequent host-virus interactions would be high, increasing the likelihood that cellular hosts could acquire novel functions. Here, we review evidence supporting this hypothesis, including data indicating that microbial communities in subsurface hydrothermal fluids are exposed to a high rate of viral infection, as well as viral metagenomic data suggesting that the vent viral assemblage is particularly enriched in genes that facilitate horizontal gene transfer and host adaptability. Therefore, viruses are likely to play a crucial role in facilitating adaptability to the extreme conditions of these regions of the deep subsurface biosphere. We also discuss how these results might apply to other regions of the deep subsurface, where the nature of virus-host interactions would be altered, but possibly no less important, compared to more energetic hydrothermal systems.

  7. Comparative Single-Cell Genomics of Chloroflexi from the Okinawa Trough Deep-Subsurface Biosphere.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fullerton, Heather; Moyer, Craig L

    2016-05-15

    Chloroflexi small-subunit (SSU) rRNA gene sequences are frequently recovered from subseafloor environments, but the metabolic potential of the phylum is poorly understood. The phylum Chloroflexi is represented by isolates with diverse metabolic strategies, including anoxic phototrophy, fermentation, and reductive dehalogenation; therefore, function cannot be attributed to these organisms based solely on phylogeny. Single-cell genomics can provide metabolic insights into uncultured organisms, like the deep-subsurface Chloroflexi Nine SSU rRNA gene sequences were identified from single-cell sorts of whole-round core material collected from the Okinawa Trough at Iheya North hydrothermal field as part of Integrated Ocean Drilling Program (IODP) expedition 331 (Deep Hot Biosphere). Previous studies of subsurface Chloroflexi single amplified genomes (SAGs) suggested heterotrophic or lithotrophic metabolisms and provided no evidence for growth by reductive dehalogenation. Our nine Chloroflexi SAGs (seven of which are from the order Anaerolineales) indicate that, in addition to genes for the Wood-Ljungdahl pathway, exogenous carbon sources can be actively transported into cells. At least one subunit for pyruvate ferredoxin oxidoreductase was found in four of the Chloroflexi SAGs. This protein can provide a link between the Wood-Ljungdahl pathway and other carbon anabolic pathways. Finally, one of the seven Anaerolineales SAGs contains a distinct reductive dehalogenase homologous (rdhA) gene. Through the use of single amplified genomes (SAGs), we have extended the metabolic potential of an understudied group of subsurface microbes, the Chloroflexi These microbes are frequently detected in the subsurface biosphere, though their metabolic capabilities have remained elusive. In contrast to previously examined Chloroflexi SAGs, our genomes (several are from the order Anaerolineales) were recovered from a hydrothermally driven system and therefore provide a unique window into

  8. Does Aspartic Acid Racemization Constrain the Depth Limit of the Subsurface Biosphere?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Onstott, T C.; Magnabosco, C.; Aubrey, A. D.; Burton, A. S.; Dworkin, J. P.; Elsila, J. E.; Grunsfeld, S.; Cao, B. H.; Hein, J. E.; Glavin, D. P.; hide

    2013-01-01

    Previous studies of the subsurface biosphere have deduced average cellular doubling times of hundreds to thousands of years based upon geochemical models. We have directly constrained the in situ average cellular protein turnover or doubling times for metabolically active micro-organisms based on cellular amino acid abundances, D/L values of cellular aspartic acid, and the in vivo aspartic acid racemization rate. Application of this method to planktonic microbial communities collected from deep fractures in South Africa yielded maximum cellular amino acid turnover times of approximately 89 years for 1 km depth and 27 C and 1-2 years for 3 km depth and 54 C. The latter turnover times are much shorter than previously estimated cellular turnover times based upon geochemical arguments. The aspartic acid racemization rate at higher temperatures yields cellular protein doubling times that are consistent with the survival times of hyperthermophilic strains and predicts that at temperatures of 85 C, cells must replace proteins every couple of days to maintain enzymatic activity. Such a high maintenance requirement may be the principal limit on the abundance of living micro-organisms in the deep, hot subsurface biosphere, as well as a potential limit on their activity. The measurement of the D/L of aspartic acid in biological samples is a potentially powerful tool for deep, fractured continental and oceanic crustal settings where geochemical models of carbon turnover times are poorly constrained. Experimental observations on the racemization rates of aspartic acid in living thermophiles and hyperthermophiles could test this hypothesis. The development of corrections for cell wall peptides and spores will be required, however, to improve the accuracy of these estimates for environmental samples.

  9. Exploration of a Subsurface Biosphere in a Volcanic Massive Sulfide: Results of the Mars Analog Rio Tinto Drilling Experiment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stoker, C. R.; Stevens, T.; Amils, R.; Fernandez, D.

    2005-12-01

    Biological systems on Earth require three key ingredients-- liquid water, an energy source, and a carbon source, that are found in very few extraterrestrial environments. Previous examples of independent subsurface ecosystems have been found only in basalt aquifers. Such lithotrophic microbial ecosystems (LME) have been proposed as models for steps in the early evolution of Earth's biosphere and for potential biospheres on other planets where the surface is uninhabitable, such as Mars and Europa.. The Mars Analog Rio Tinto Experiment (MARTE) has searched in a volcanic massive sulfide deposit in Rio Tinto Spain for a subsurface biosphere capable of living without sunlight or oxygen and found a subsurface ecosystem driven by the weathering of the massive sulfide deposit (VMS) in which the rock matrix provides sufficient resources to support microbial metabolism, including the vigorous production of H2 by water-rock interactions. Microbial production of methane and sulfate occurred in the sulfide orebody and microbial production of methane and hydrogen sulfide continued in an anoxic plume downgradient from the sulfide ore. Organic carbon concentrations in the parent rock were too low to support microbes. The Rio Tinto system thus represents a new type of subsurface ecosystem with strong relevance for exobiological studies. Commercial drilling was used to reach the aquifer system at 100 m depth and conventional laboratory techniques were used to identify and characterize the biosphere. Then, the life search strategy that led to successful identification of this biosphere was applied to the development of a robotic drilling, core handling, inspection, subsampling, and life detection system built on a prototype planetary lander that was deployed in Rio Tinto Spain in September 2005 to test the capability of a robotic drilling system to search for subsurface life. A remote science team directed the simulation and analyzed the data from the MARTE robotic drill. The results

  10. Fungal and Prokaryotic Activities in the Marine Subsurface Biosphere at Peru Margin and Canterbury Basin Inferred from RNA-Based Analyses and Microscopy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pachiadaki, Maria G; Rédou, Vanessa; Beaudoin, David J; Burgaud, Gaëtan; Edgcomb, Virginia P

    2016-01-01

    The deep sedimentary biosphere, extending 100s of meters below the seafloor harbors unexpected diversity of Bacteria, Archaea, and microbial eukaryotes. Far less is known about microbial eukaryotes in subsurface habitats, albeit several studies have indicated that fungi dominate microbial eukaryotic communities and fungal molecular signatures (of both yeasts and filamentous forms) have been detected in samples as deep as 1740 mbsf. Here, we compare and contrast fungal ribosomal RNA gene signatures and whole community metatranscriptomes present in sediment core samples from 6 and 95 mbsf from Peru Margin site 1229A and from samples from 12 and 345 mbsf from Canterbury Basin site U1352. The metatranscriptome analyses reveal higher relative expression of amino acid and peptide transporters in the less nutrient rich Canterbury Basin sediments compared to the nutrient rich Peru Margin, and higher expression of motility genes in the Peru Margin samples. Higher expression of genes associated with metals transporters and antibiotic resistance and production was detected in Canterbury Basin sediments. A poly-A focused metatranscriptome produced for the Canterbury Basin sample from 345 mbsf provides further evidence for active fungal communities in the subsurface in the form of fungal-associated transcripts for metabolic and cellular processes, cell and membrane functions, and catalytic activities. Fungal communities at comparable depths at the two geographically separated locations appear dominated by distinct taxa. Differences in taxonomic composition and expression of genes associated with particular metabolic activities may be a function of sediment organic content as well as oceanic province. Microscopic analysis of Canterbury Basin sediment samples from 4 and 403 mbsf produced visualizations of septate fungal filaments, branching fungi, conidiogenesis, and spores. These images provide another important line of evidence supporting the occurrence and activity of fungi in

  11. Biogenic Carbon on Mars: A Subsurface Chauvinistic Viewpoint

    Science.gov (United States)

    Onstott, T. C.; Lau, C. Y. M.; Magnabosco, C.; Harris, R.; Chen, Y.; Slater, G.; Sherwood Lollar, B.; Kieft, T. L.; van Heerden, E.; Borgonie, G.; Dong, H.

    2015-12-01

    A review of 150 publications on the subsurface microbiology of the continental subsurface provides ~1,400 measurements of cellular abundances down to 4,800 meter depth. These data suggest that the continental subsurface biomass is comprised of ~1016-17 grams of carbon, which is higher than the most recent estimates of ~1015 grams of carbon (1 Gt) for the marine deep biosphere. If life developed early in Martian history and Mars sustained an active hydrological cycle during its first 500 million years, then is it possible that Mars could have developed a subsurface biomass of comparable size to that of Earth? Such a biomass would comprise a much larger fraction of the total known Martian carbon budget than does the subsurface biomass on Earth. More importantly could a remnant of this subsurface biosphere survive to the present day? To determine how sustainable subsurface life could be in isolation from the surface we have been studying subsurface fracture fluids from the Precambrian Shields in South Africa and Canada. In these environments the energetically efficient and deeply rooted acetyl-CoA pathway for carbon fixation plays a central role for chemolithoautotrophic primary producers that form the base of the biomass pyramid. These primary producers appear to be sustained indefinitely by H2 generated through serpentinization and radiolytic reactions. Carbon isotope data suggest that in some subsurface locations a much larger population of secondary consumers are sustained by the primary production of biogenic CH4 from a much smaller population of methanogens. These inverted biomass and energy pyramids sustained by the cycling of CH4 could have been and could still be active on Mars. The C and H isotopic signatures of Martian CH4 remain key tools in identifying potential signatures of an extant Martian biosphere. Based upon our results to date cavity ring-down spectroscopic technologies provide an option for making these measurements on future rover missions.

  12. Modelling the environmental transport of tritium in the vicinity of long term atmospheric and sub-surface sources. Report of the Tritium Working Group of the Biosphere Modelling and Assessment (BIOMASS) Programme, Theme 3

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2003-03-01

    The IAEA Programme on BIOsphere Modelling and ASSessment (BIOMASS) was launched in Vienna in October 1996. The programme was concerned with developing and improving capabilities to predict the transfer of radionuclides in the environment. The programme had three themes: Theme 1: Radioactive Waste Disposal. The objective was to develop the concept of a standard or reference biosphere for application to the assessment of the long term safety of repositories for radioactive waste. Theme 2: Environmental Releases. BIOMASS provided an international forum for activities aimed at increasing the confidence in methods and models for the assessment of radiation exposure related to environmental releases. Two Working Groups addressed issues concerned with the reconstruction of radiation doses received by people from past releases of radionuclides to the environment and the evaluation of the efficacy of remedial measures. Theme 3: Biosphere Processes. The aim of this Theme was to improve capabilities for modelling the transfer of radionuclides in particular parts of the biosphere identified as being of potential radiological significance and where there were gaps in modelling approaches. This topic was explored using a range of methods including reviews of the literature, model inter-comparison exercises and, where possible, model testing against independent sources of data. Three Working Groups were established to examine the modelling of: (1) long term tritium dispersion in the environment; (2) radionuclide uptake by fruits; and (3) radionuclide migration and accumulation in forest ecosystems. This report describes results of the studies undertaken by the Tritium Working Group under Theme 3. It discusses the six model test exercises (three model-model intercomparisons and three model-data exercises) and the twenty-month field sampling programme undertaken to investigate the environmental transport of tritium in the vicinity of long term atmospheric and sub-surface sources

  13. The Biosphere.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cloud, Preston

    1983-01-01

    Discusses the earth's biosphere, considering how the microbial, animal and plant life (which make up the biosphere) are sustained by the earth's lithosphere, hydrosphere, and atmosphere. Also considers how these three earth features have powerfully shaped the evolution of these organisms. (JN)

  14. It's the Biosphere, Stupid!

    OpenAIRE

    Cairns, John

    2007-01-01

    The biosphere is humankind s life support system and the source of the resources that drive exponential growth. Without the biospheric life support system functioning in a way that is favorable to humans, humankind could face extinctions.

  15. A Biosphere Assessment: Influence due to Geosphere-Biosphere Interfaces

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lee, Youn Myoung; Hwang, Yong Soo

    2009-01-01

    influenced by the other GBI scheme, which is the case all possible surface and subsurface water bodies, such as aquifer, river water and marine water that are incorporated in the GBIs, showing some discrepancy for almost all the nuclides even though exposures for two other exposure groups, which means GBI scheme is very important and it should be carefully treated and modeled for the biosphere modeling

  16. Safety analysis in subsurface repositories

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1985-06-01

    The development of mathematical models to represent the repository-geosphere-biosphere system, and the development of a structure for data acquisition, processing, and use to analyse the safety of subsurface repositories, are presented. To study the behavior of radionuclides in geosphere a laboratory to determine the hydrodynamic dispersion coefficient was constructed. (M.C.K.) [pt

  17. Some Ecological Mechanisms to Generate Habitability in Planetary Subsurface Areas by Chemolithotrophic Communities: The Ro Tinto Subsurface Ecosystem as a Model System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fernández-Remolar, David C.; Gómez, Felipe; Prieto-Ballesteros, Olga; Schelble, Rachel T.; Rodríguez, Nuria; Amiols, Ricardo

    2008-02-01

    Chemolithotrophic communities that colonize subsurface habitats have great relevance for the astrobiological exploration of our Solar System. We hypothesize that the chemical and thermal stabilization of an environment through microbial activity could make a given planetary region habitable. The MARTE project ground-truth drilling campaigns that sampled cryptic subsurface microbial communities in the basement of the Ro Tinto headwaters have shown that acidic surficial habitats are the result of the microbial oxidation of pyritic ores. The oxidation process is exothermic and releases heat under both aerobic and anaerobic conditions. These microbial communities can maintain the subsurface habitat temperature through storage heat if the subsurface temperature does not exceed their maximum growth temperature. In the acidic solutions of the Ro Tinto, ferric iron acts as an effective buffer for controlling water pH. Under anaerobic conditions, ferric iron is the oxidant used by microbes to decompose pyrite through the production of sulfate, ferrous iron, and protons. The integration between the physical and chemical processes mediated by microorganisms with those driven by the local geology and hydrology have led us to hypothesize that thermal and chemical regulation mechanisms exist in this environment and that these homeostatic mechanisms could play an essential role in creating habitable areas for other types of microorganisms. Therefore, searching for the physicochemical expression of extinct and extant homeostatic mechanisms through physical and chemical anomalies in the Mars crust (i.e., local thermal gradient or high concentration of unusual products such as ferric sulfates precipitated out from acidic solutions produced by hypothetical microbial communities) could be a first step in the search for biological traces of a putative extant or extinct Mars biosphere.

  18. Some ecological mechanisms to generate habitability in planetary subsurface areas by chemolithotrophic communities: the Río Tinto subsurface ecosystem as a model system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fernández-Remolar, David C; Gómez, Felipe; Prieto-Ballesteros, Olga; Schelble, Rachel T; Rodríguez, Nuria; Amils, Ricardo

    2008-02-01

    Chemolithotrophic communities that colonize subsurface habitats have great relevance for the astrobiological exploration of our Solar System. We hypothesize that the chemical and thermal stabilization of an environment through microbial activity could make a given planetary region habitable. The MARTE project ground-truth drilling campaigns that sampled cryptic subsurface microbial communities in the basement of the Río Tinto headwaters have shown that acidic surficial habitats are the result of the microbial oxidation of pyritic ores. The oxidation process is exothermic and releases heat under both aerobic and anaerobic conditions. These microbial communities can maintain the subsurface habitat temperature through storage heat if the subsurface temperature does not exceed their maximum growth temperature. In the acidic solutions of the Río Tinto, ferric iron acts as an effective buffer for controlling water pH. Under anaerobic conditions, ferric iron is the oxidant used by microbes to decompose pyrite through the production of sulfate, ferrous iron, and protons. The integration between the physical and chemical processes mediated by microorganisms with those driven by the local geology and hydrology have led us to hypothesize that thermal and chemical regulation mechanisms exist in this environment and that these homeostatic mechanisms could play an essential role in creating habitable areas for other types of microorganisms. Therefore, searching for the physicochemical expression of extinct and extant homeostatic mechanisms through physical and chemical anomalies in the Mars crust (i.e., local thermal gradient or high concentration of unusual products such as ferric sulfates precipitated out from acidic solutions produced by hypothetical microbial communities) could be a first step in the search for biological traces of a putative extant or extinct Mars biosphere.

  19. Biosphere Model Report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    D. W. Wu

    2003-07-16

    The purpose of this report is to document the biosphere model, the Environmental Radiation Model for Yucca Mountain, Nevada (ERMYN), which describes radionuclide transport processes in the biosphere and associated human exposure that may arise as the result of radionuclide release from the geologic repository at Yucca Mountain. The biosphere model is one of the process models that support the Yucca Mountain Project (YMP) Total System Performance Assessment (TSPA) for the license application (LA), the TSPA-LA. The ERMYN model provides the capability of performing human radiation dose assessments. This report documents the biosphere model, which includes: (1) Describing the reference biosphere, human receptor, exposure scenarios, and primary radionuclides for each exposure scenario (Section 6.1); (2) Developing a biosphere conceptual model using site-specific features, events, and processes (FEPs), the reference biosphere, the human receptor, and assumptions (Section 6.2 and Section 6.3); (3) Building a mathematical model using the biosphere conceptual model and published biosphere models (Sections 6.4 and 6.5); (4) Summarizing input parameters for the mathematical model, including the uncertainty associated with input values (Section 6.6); (5) Identifying improvements in the ERMYN model compared with the model used in previous biosphere modeling (Section 6.7); (6) Constructing an ERMYN implementation tool (model) based on the biosphere mathematical model using GoldSim stochastic simulation software (Sections 6.8 and 6.9); (7) Verifying the ERMYN model by comparing output from the software with hand calculations to ensure that the GoldSim implementation is correct (Section 6.10); and (8) Validating the ERMYN model by corroborating it with published biosphere models; comparing conceptual models, mathematical models, and numerical results (Section 7).

  20. Biosphere Model Report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    M. A. Wasiolek

    2003-10-27

    The purpose of this report is to document the biosphere model, the Environmental Radiation Model for Yucca Mountain, Nevada (ERMYN), which describes radionuclide transport processes in the biosphere and associated human exposure that may arise as the result of radionuclide release from the geologic repository at Yucca Mountain. The biosphere model is one of the process models that support the Yucca Mountain Project (YMP) Total System Performance Assessment (TSPA) for the license application (LA), the TSPA-LA. The ERMYN model provides the capability of performing human radiation dose assessments. This report documents the biosphere model, which includes: (1) Describing the reference biosphere, human receptor, exposure scenarios, and primary radionuclides for each exposure scenario (Section 6.1); (2) Developing a biosphere conceptual model using site-specific features, events, and processes (FEPs), the reference biosphere, the human receptor, and assumptions (Section 6.2 and Section 6.3); (3) Building a mathematical model using the biosphere conceptual model and published biosphere models (Sections 6.4 and 6.5); (4) Summarizing input parameters for the mathematical model, including the uncertainty associated with input values (Section 6.6); (5) Identifying improvements in the ERMYN model compared with the model used in previous biosphere modeling (Section 6.7); (6) Constructing an ERMYN implementation tool (model) based on the biosphere mathematical model using GoldSim stochastic simulation software (Sections 6.8 and 6.9); (7) Verifying the ERMYN model by comparing output from the software with hand calculations to ensure that the GoldSim implementation is correct (Section 6.10); and (8) Validating the ERMYN model by corroborating it with published biosphere models; comparing conceptual models, mathematical models, and numerical results (Section 7).

  1. Biosphere Model Report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    D.W. Wu; A.J. Smith

    2004-11-08

    The purpose of this report is to document the biosphere model, the Environmental Radiation Model for Yucca Mountain, Nevada (ERMYN), which describes radionuclide transport processes in the biosphere and associated human exposure that may arise as the result of radionuclide release from the geologic repository at Yucca Mountain. The biosphere model is one of the process models that support the Yucca Mountain Project (YMP) Total System Performance Assessment (TSPA) for the license application (LA), TSPA-LA. The ERMYN provides the capability of performing human radiation dose assessments. This report documents the biosphere model, which includes: (1) Describing the reference biosphere, human receptor, exposure scenarios, and primary radionuclides for each exposure scenario (Section 6.1); (2) Developing a biosphere conceptual model using site-specific features, events, and processes (FEPs) (Section 6.2), the reference biosphere (Section 6.1.1), the human receptor (Section 6.1.2), and approximations (Sections 6.3.1.4 and 6.3.2.4); (3) Building a mathematical model using the biosphere conceptual model (Section 6.3) and published biosphere models (Sections 6.4 and 6.5); (4) Summarizing input parameters for the mathematical model, including the uncertainty associated with input values (Section 6.6); (5) Identifying improvements in the ERMYN compared with the model used in previous biosphere modeling (Section 6.7); (6) Constructing an ERMYN implementation tool (model) based on the biosphere mathematical model using GoldSim stochastic simulation software (Sections 6.8 and 6.9); (7) Verifying the ERMYN by comparing output from the software with hand calculations to ensure that the GoldSim implementation is correct (Section 6.10); (8) Validating the ERMYN by corroborating it with published biosphere models; comparing conceptual models, mathematical models, and numerical results (Section 7).

  2. Biosphere Model Report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    D.W. Wu; A.J. Smith

    2004-01-01

    The purpose of this report is to document the biosphere model, the Environmental Radiation Model for Yucca Mountain, Nevada (ERMYN), which describes radionuclide transport processes in the biosphere and associated human exposure that may arise as the result of radionuclide release from the geologic repository at Yucca Mountain. The biosphere model is one of the process models that support the Yucca Mountain Project (YMP) Total System Performance Assessment (TSPA) for the license application (LA), TSPA-LA. The ERMYN provides the capability of performing human radiation dose assessments. This report documents the biosphere model, which includes: (1) Describing the reference biosphere, human receptor, exposure scenarios, and primary radionuclides for each exposure scenario (Section 6.1); (2) Developing a biosphere conceptual model using site-specific features, events, and processes (FEPs) (Section 6.2), the reference biosphere (Section 6.1.1), the human receptor (Section 6.1.2), and approximations (Sections 6.3.1.4 and 6.3.2.4); (3) Building a mathematical model using the biosphere conceptual model (Section 6.3) and published biosphere models (Sections 6.4 and 6.5); (4) Summarizing input parameters for the mathematical model, including the uncertainty associated with input values (Section 6.6); (5) Identifying improvements in the ERMYN compared with the model used in previous biosphere modeling (Section 6.7); (6) Constructing an ERMYN implementation tool (model) based on the biosphere mathematical model using GoldSim stochastic simulation software (Sections 6.8 and 6.9); (7) Verifying the ERMYN by comparing output from the software with hand calculations to ensure that the GoldSim implementation is correct (Section 6.10); (8) Validating the ERMYN by corroborating it with published biosphere models; comparing conceptual models, mathematical models, and numerical results (Section 7)

  3. Biosphere Model Report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    D. W. Wu

    2003-01-01

    The purpose of this report is to document the biosphere model, the Environmental Radiation Model for Yucca Mountain, Nevada (ERMYN), which describes radionuclide transport processes in the biosphere and associated human exposure that may arise as the result of radionuclide release from the geologic repository at Yucca Mountain. The biosphere model is one of the process models that support the Yucca Mountain Project (YMP) Total System Performance Assessment (TSPA) for the license application (LA), the TSPA-LA. The ERMYN model provides the capability of performing human radiation dose assessments. This report documents the biosphere model, which includes: (1) Describing the reference biosphere, human receptor, exposure scenarios, and primary radionuclides for each exposure scenario (Section 6.1); (2) Developing a biosphere conceptual model using site-specific features, events, and processes (FEPs), the reference biosphere, the human receptor, and assumptions (Section 6.2 and Section 6.3); (3) Building a mathematical model using the biosphere conceptual model and published biosphere models (Sections 6.4 and 6.5); (4) Summarizing input parameters for the mathematical model, including the uncertainty associated with input values (Section 6.6); (5) Identifying improvements in the ERMYN model compared with the model used in previous biosphere modeling (Section 6.7); (6) Constructing an ERMYN implementation tool (model) based on the biosphere mathematical model using GoldSim stochastic simulation software (Sections 6.8 and 6.9); (7) Verifying the ERMYN model by comparing output from the software with hand calculations to ensure that the GoldSim implementation is correct (Section 6.10); and (8) Validating the ERMYN model by corroborating it with published biosphere models; comparing conceptual models, mathematical models, and numerical results (Section 7)

  4. The development of biosphere codes for use in assessment of the radiological impact of geological repositories for radioactive waste

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Coughtrey, P.J.; Kane, P.; Thorne, M.C.

    1982-12-01

    A statement of radiological protection criteria and measures of dose, forms the preface to a review of extant biosphere codes. Consideration is given to the implementation of the codes FOODII and NEPTUN for use with SYVAC. The selection of nuclides for consideration in SYVAC is discussed. Detailed specifications are provided for biosphere model developments desirable in the longer term. (author)

  5. Biosphere Process Model Report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    J. Schmitt

    2000-05-25

    To evaluate the postclosure performance of a potential monitored geologic repository at Yucca Mountain, a Total System Performance Assessment (TSPA) will be conducted. Nine Process Model Reports (PMRs), including this document, are being developed to summarize the technical basis for each of the process models supporting the TSPA model. These reports cover the following areas: (1) Integrated Site Model; (2) Unsaturated Zone Flow and Transport; (3) Near Field Environment; (4) Engineered Barrier System Degradation, Flow, and Transport; (5) Waste Package Degradation; (6) Waste Form Degradation; (7) Saturated Zone Flow and Transport; (8) Biosphere; and (9) Disruptive Events. Analysis/Model Reports (AMRs) contain the more detailed technical information used to support TSPA and the PMRs. The AMRs consists of data, analyses, models, software, and supporting documentation that will be used to defend the applicability of each process model for evaluating the postclosure performance of the potential Yucca Mountain repository system. This documentation will ensure the traceability of information from its source through its ultimate use in the TSPA-Site Recommendation (SR) and in the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) analysis processes. The objective of the Biosphere PMR is to summarize (1) the development of the biosphere model, and (2) the Biosphere Dose Conversion Factors (BDCFs) developed for use in TSPA. The Biosphere PMR does not present or summarize estimates of potential radiation doses to human receptors. Dose calculations are performed as part of TSPA and will be presented in the TSPA documentation. The biosphere model is a component of the process to evaluate postclosure repository performance and regulatory compliance for a potential monitored geologic repository at Yucca Mountain, Nevada. The biosphere model describes those exposure pathways in the biosphere by which radionuclides released from a potential repository could reach a human receptor

  6. Biosphere Process Model Report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Schmitt, J.

    2000-01-01

    To evaluate the postclosure performance of a potential monitored geologic repository at Yucca Mountain, a Total System Performance Assessment (TSPA) will be conducted. Nine Process Model Reports (PMRs), including this document, are being developed to summarize the technical basis for each of the process models supporting the TSPA model. These reports cover the following areas: (1) Integrated Site Model; (2) Unsaturated Zone Flow and Transport; (3) Near Field Environment; (4) Engineered Barrier System Degradation, Flow, and Transport; (5) Waste Package Degradation; (6) Waste Form Degradation; (7) Saturated Zone Flow and Transport; (8) Biosphere; and (9) Disruptive Events. Analysis/Model Reports (AMRs) contain the more detailed technical information used to support TSPA and the PMRs. The AMRs consists of data, analyses, models, software, and supporting documentation that will be used to defend the applicability of each process model for evaluating the postclosure performance of the potential Yucca Mountain repository system. This documentation will ensure the traceability of information from its source through its ultimate use in the TSPA-Site Recommendation (SR) and in the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) analysis processes. The objective of the Biosphere PMR is to summarize (1) the development of the biosphere model, and (2) the Biosphere Dose Conversion Factors (BDCFs) developed for use in TSPA. The Biosphere PMR does not present or summarize estimates of potential radiation doses to human receptors. Dose calculations are performed as part of TSPA and will be presented in the TSPA documentation. The biosphere model is a component of the process to evaluate postclosure repository performance and regulatory compliance for a potential monitored geologic repository at Yucca Mountain, Nevada. The biosphere model describes those exposure pathways in the biosphere by which radionuclides released from a potential repository could reach a human receptor

  7. Nematoda from the terrestrial deep subsurface of South Africa

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Borgonie, G.; García-Moyano, A.; Litthauer, D.; Bert, W.; Bester, A.; Heerden, van E.; Möller, C.; Erasmus, M.; Onstott, T.C.

    2011-01-01

    Since its discovery over two decades ago, the deep subsurface biosphere has been considered to be the realm of single-cell organisms, extending over three kilometres into the Earth’s crust and comprising a significant fraction of the global biosphere1–4. The constraints of temperature, energy,

  8. Biosphere: problems and solutions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Veziroglu, T.N. (ed.)

    1984-01-01

    This volume contains a large number of typescript papers from a symposium on the Biosphere, held in Miami Beach in 1984. The topics range from chemical landfills to space debris, with many aspects of chemistry throughout.

  9. The Serpentinite Subsurface Microbiome

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schrenk, M. O.; Nelson, B. Y.; Brazelton, W. J.

    2011-12-01

    Microbial habitats hosted in ultramafic rocks constitute substantial, globally-distributed portions of the subsurface biosphere, occurring both on the continents and beneath the seafloor. The aqueous alteration of ultramafics, in a process known as serpentinization, creates energy rich, high pH conditions, with low concentrations of inorganic carbon which place fundamental constraints upon microbial metabolism and physiology. Despite their importance, very few studies have attempted to directly access and quantify microbial activities and distributions in the serpentinite subsurface microbiome. We have initiated microbiological studies of subsurface seeps and rocks at three separate continental sites of serpentinization in Newfoundland, Italy, and California and compared these results to previous analyses of the Lost City field, near the Mid-Atlantic Ridge. In all cases, microbial cell densities in seep fluids are extremely low, ranging from approximately 100,000 to less than 1,000 cells per milliliter. Culture-independent analyses of 16S rRNA genes revealed low-diversity microbial communities related to Gram-positive Firmicutes and hydrogen-oxidizing bacteria. Interestingly, unlike Lost City, there has been little evidence for significant archaeal populations in the continental subsurface to date. Culturing studies at the sites yielded numerous alkaliphilic isolates on nutrient-rich agar and putative iron-reducing bacteria in anaerobic incubations, many of which are related to known alkaliphilic and subsurface isolates. Finally, metagenomic data reinforce the culturing results, indicating the presence of genes associated with organotrophy, hydrogen oxidation, and iron reduction in seep fluid samples. Our data provide insight into the lifestyles of serpentinite subsurface microbial populations and targets for future quantitative exploration using both biochemical and geochemical approaches.

  10. Earth's early biosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Des Marais, D. J.

    1998-01-01

    Understanding our own early biosphere is essential to our search for life elsewhere, because life arose on Earth very early and rocky planets shared similar early histories. The biosphere arose before 3.8 Ga ago, was exclusively unicellular and was dominated by hyperthermophiles that utilized chemical sources of energy and employed a range of metabolic pathways for CO2 assimilation. Photosynthesis also arose very early. Oxygenic photosynthesis arose later but still prior to 2.7 Ga. The transition toward the modern global environment was paced by a decline in volcanic and hydrothermal activity. These developments allowed atmospheric O2 levels to increase. The O2 increase created new niches for aerobic life, most notably the more advanced Eukarya that eventually spawned the megascopic fauna and flora of our modern biosphere.

  11. The biosphere: current status

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Thorne, M.C.

    1988-06-01

    This paper outlines the biosphere models and data required to assess the post-closure radiological impact of deep geological repositories for low and intermediate level radioactive wastes. It then goes on to show how these requirements are being met either within the Nirex Safety Assessment Research Programme or from other research programmes. (Author)

  12. Gene expression in the deep biosphere.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Orsi, William D; Edgcomb, Virginia P; Christman, Glenn D; Biddle, Jennifer F

    2013-07-11

    Scientific ocean drilling has revealed a deep biosphere of widespread microbial life in sub-seafloor sediment. Microbial metabolism in the marine subsurface probably has an important role in global biogeochemical cycles, but deep biosphere activities are not well understood. Here we describe and analyse the first sub-seafloor metatranscriptomes from anaerobic Peru Margin sediment up to 159 metres below the sea floor, represented by over 1 billion complementary DNA (cDNA) sequence reads. Anaerobic metabolism of amino acids, carbohydrates and lipids seem to be the dominant metabolic processes, and profiles of dissimilatory sulfite reductase (dsr) transcripts are consistent with pore-water sulphate concentration profiles. Moreover, transcripts involved in cell division increase as a function of microbial cell concentration, indicating that increases in sub-seafloor microbial abundance are a function of cell division across all three domains of life. These data support calculations and models of sub-seafloor microbial metabolism and represent the first holistic picture of deep biosphere activities.

  13. Microbial metagenomes from three aquifers in the Fennoscandian shield terrestrial deep biosphere reveal metabolic partitioning among populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Xiaofen; Holmfeldt, Karin; Hubalek, Valerie; Lundin, Daniel; Åström, Mats; Bertilsson, Stefan; Dopson, Mark

    2016-05-01

    Microorganisms in the terrestrial deep biosphere host up to 20% of the earth's biomass and are suggested to be sustained by the gases hydrogen and carbon dioxide. A metagenome analysis of three deep subsurface water types of contrasting age (from 86% coverage. The populations were dominated by Proteobacteria, Candidate divisions, unclassified archaea and unclassified bacteria. The estimated genome sizes of the biosphere. The data were finally used to create a combined metabolic model of the deep terrestrial biosphere microbial community.

  14. Biosphere2 and Earthbuzz

    Science.gov (United States)

    Washburne, J. C.

    2009-12-01

    In an attempt to reach a broader audience, Biosphere 2, near Tucson, AZ, is participating in a network of science centers thanks to new funding through the Science Museum of Minnesota (SMM) and the National Center for Earth System Dynamics (NCED). Each of these centers will be tied together through an Earthbuzz kiosk, basically a networked web site that allows visitors to learn more about the work of leading local scientists in a very personal and captivating format. Content is currently being developed by Biosphere 2 researchers, staff, and graduate students that range from a public question and answer forum called “Scientist on the Spot” to science blogs by Biosphere 2 Fellows. It is hoped that this project will help educate the public about the Anthropocene, that is, the current geologic period that is so greatly affected by humankind’s impact on the health of the planet. Biosphere 2 provides a unique location to engage the public in this conversation for several reasons. First, no other destination on Earth gives the public such a physical immersion into what climate change might mean as does Biosphere 2. On the regular walking tour, visitors are guided through scaled down versions of an African savannah, a semi-arid thorn scrub, a coastal fog desert and a tropical rainforest. Digital displays of temperature and humidity confirm what your body is feeling - conditions ranging from desert aridity to tropical humidity. As one passes through the biomes of Biosphere 2, climate change is a whole body experience. Second, Biosphere 2 is also an active ecological research site - part of a unique network of sites run by the University of Arizona that allow scientists to study ecosystem processes across a range of scales - from microscopic root studies to studies encompassing large watersheds. In particular, a group of researchers is studying why large stands of pinion-juniper forests across the southwest have died in recent years. Biosphere2’s role in this

  15. Biosphere data base revision

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bergstroem, U.; Andersson, K.; Sundblad, B.

    1985-12-01

    The turnover of long-lived radionuclides in the biosphere has been modelled some time ago and the exposure to man was calculated. The nuclides were long-lived actinides and fission products leaking from a simulated deep rock repository for spent nuclear fuel. The data base for these calculations has been updated in the present work and in addition a number of nuclides that were not included in the earlier work have been treated. (G.B.)

  16. Reconnecting to the biosphere.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Folke, Carl; Jansson, Asa; Rockström, Johan; Olsson, Per; Carpenter, Stephen R; Chapin, F Stuart; Crépin, Anne-Sophie; Daily, Gretchen; Danell, Kjell; Ebbesson, Jonas; Elmqvist, Thomas; Galaz, Victor; Moberg, Fredrik; Nilsson, Måns; Osterblom, Henrik; Ostrom, Elinor; Persson, Asa; Peterson, Garry; Polasky, Stephen; Steffen, Will; Walker, Brian; Westley, Frances

    2011-11-01

    Humanity has emerged as a major force in the operation of the biosphere, with a significant imprint on the Earth System, challenging social-ecological resilience. This new situation calls for a fundamental shift in perspectives, world views, and institutions. Human development and progress must be reconnected to the capacity of the biosphere and essential ecosystem services to be sustained. Governance challenges include a highly interconnected and faster world, cascading social-ecological interactions and planetary boundaries that create vulnerabilities but also opportunities for social-ecological change and transformation. Tipping points and thresholds highlight the importance of understanding and managing resilience. New modes of flexible governance are emerging. A central challenge is to reconnect these efforts to the changing preconditions for societal development as active stewards of the Earth System. We suggest that the Millennium Development Goals need to be reframed in such a planetary stewardship context combined with a call for a new social contract on global sustainability. The ongoing mind shift in human relations with Earth and its boundaries provides exciting opportunities for societal development in collaboration with the biosphere--a global sustainability agenda for humanity.

  17. Biosphere Model Report, Errata 1

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    M. Wasolek

    2003-09-18

    The purpose of this report is to document the biosphere model, the Environmental Radiation Model for Yucca Mountain, Nevada (ERMYN), which describes radionuclide transport processes in the biosphere and associated human exposure that may arise as the result of radionuclide release from the geologic repository at Yucca Mountain. The biosphere model is one of the process models that support the Yucca Mountain Project (YMP) Total System Performance Assessment (TSPA) for the license application (LA), the TSPA-LA. The ERMYN model provides the capability of performing human radiation dose assessments. This report documents the biosphere model, which includes: (1) Describing the reference biosphere, human receptor, exposure scenarios, and primary radionuclides for each exposure scenario (Section 6.1); (2) Developing a biosphere conceptual model using site-specific features, events, and processes (FEPs), the reference biosphere, the human receptor, and assumptions (Section 6.2 and Section 6.3); (3) Building a mathematical model using the biosphere conceptual model and published biosphere models (Sections 6.4 and 6.5); (4) Summarizing input parameters for the mathematical model, including the uncertainty associated with input values (Section 6.6); (5) Identifying improvements in the ERMYN model compared with the model used in previous biosphere modeling (Section 6.7); (6) Constructing an ERMYN implementation tool (model) based on the biosphere mathematical model using GoldSim stochastic simulation software (Sections 6.8 and 6.9); (7) Verifying the ERMYN model by comparing output from the software with hand calculations to ensure that the GoldSim implementation is correct (Section 6.10); (8) Validating the ERMYN model by corroborating it with published biosphere models; comparing conceptual models, mathematical models, and numerical results (Section 7).

  18. Biosphere Model Report, Errata 1

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wasolek, M.

    2003-01-01

    The purpose of this report is to document the biosphere model, the Environmental Radiation Model for Yucca Mountain, Nevada (ERMYN), which describes radionuclide transport processes in the biosphere and associated human exposure that may arise as the result of radionuclide release from the geologic repository at Yucca Mountain. The biosphere model is one of the process models that support the Yucca Mountain Project (YMP) Total System Performance Assessment (TSPA) for the license application (LA), the TSPA-LA. The ERMYN model provides the capability of performing human radiation dose assessments. This report documents the biosphere model, which includes: (1) Describing the reference biosphere, human receptor, exposure scenarios, and primary radionuclides for each exposure scenario (Section 6.1); (2) Developing a biosphere conceptual model using site-specific features, events, and processes (FEPs), the reference biosphere, the human receptor, and assumptions (Section 6.2 and Section 6.3); (3) Building a mathematical model using the biosphere conceptual model and published biosphere models (Sections 6.4 and 6.5); (4) Summarizing input parameters for the mathematical model, including the uncertainty associated with input values (Section 6.6); (5) Identifying improvements in the ERMYN model compared with the model used in previous biosphere modeling (Section 6.7); (6) Constructing an ERMYN implementation tool (model) based on the biosphere mathematical model using GoldSim stochastic simulation software (Sections 6.8 and 6.9); (7) Verifying the ERMYN model by comparing output from the software with hand calculations to ensure that the GoldSim implementation is correct (Section 6.10); (8) Validating the ERMYN model by corroborating it with published biosphere models; comparing conceptual models, mathematical models, and numerical results (Section 7)

  19. The biosphere rules.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Unruh, Gregory C

    2008-02-01

    Sustainability, defined by natural scientists as the capacity of healthy ecosystems to function indefinitely, has become a clarion call for business. Leading companies have taken high-profile steps toward achieving it: Wal-Mart, for example, with its efforts to reduce packaging waste, and Nike, which has removed toxic chemicals from its shoes. But, says Unruh, the director of Thunderbird's Lincoln Center for Ethics in Global Management, sustainability is more than an endless journey of incremental steps. It is a destination, for which the biosphere of planet Earth--refined through billions of years of trial and error--is a perfect model. Unruh distills some lessons from the biosphere into three rules: Use a parsimonious palette. Managers can rethink their sourcing strategies and dramatically simplify the number and types of materials their companies use in production, making recycling cost-effective. After the furniture manufacturer Herman Miller discovered that its leading desk chair had 200 components made from more than 800 chemical compounds, it designed an award-winning successor whose far more limited materials palette is 96% recyclable. Cycle up, virtuously. Manufacturers should design recovery value into their products at the outset. Shaw Industries, for example, recycles the nylon fiber from its worn-out carpet into brand-new carpet tile. Exploit the power of platforms. Platform design in industry tends to occur at the component level--but the materials in those components constitute a more fundamental platform. Patagonia, by recycling Capilene brand performance underwear, has achieved energy costs 76% below those for virgin sourcing. Biosphere rules can teach companies how to build ecologically friendly products that both reduce manufacturing costs and prove highly attractive to consumers. And managers need not wait for a green technological revolution to implement them.

  20. Olkiluoto biosphere description 2006

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Haapanen, R.; Aro, L.; Ilvesniemi, H.; Kareinen, T.; Kirkkala, T.; Mykrae, S.; Turkki, H.; Lahdenperae, A.-M.; Ikonen, A.T.K.

    2007-02-01

    This report summarises the current knowledge of the biosphere of Olkiluoto, and it is the first Biosphere Description Report. The elements considered were climate, topography, land use, overburden, terrestrial vegetation and fauna and sea flora, fauna and water. The principal aim was to present a synthesis of the present state (now to 2020) and the main features of past evolution of the biosphere at the site using currently available data. The lack of site specific parameters and their importance was discussed. Conceptual ecosystem models are presented for land and sea. Currently available data made it possible to calculate the biomass of the terrestrial vegetation and further convert it to carbon. In the case of terrestrial animals, preliminary figures are given for moose alone due to lack of sitespecific data. For the same reason, the sea ecosystem model was not quantified within this work. The ecosystems on Olkiluoto do not deviate from the surrounding areas. Since mires are few on Olkiluoto, forests are the most important land ecosystem. However, coastal areas are the transition zones between land and sea, and also potential sites for deep groundwater discharge. The major interest concerning aquatic ecosystems was laid on four future lakes potentially developing from the sea due to the land up-lift. Current sea sediments near Olkiluoto are future land areas, and thus very important. Spatially, the forest ecosystems of Olkiluoto are now most comprehensively covered, while the temporal coverage is highest in sea ecosystems. Lack of data is greatest in terrestrial fauna and sea sediments. During this work, the system boundaries were crossed and the use of data over disciplines was started. The data were mostly in agreement, but some discrepancies were detected. To solve these, and to supplement the existing data, some recommendations were given. (orig.)

  1. The deep, hot biosphere: Twenty-five years of retrospection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Colman, Daniel R; Poudel, Saroj; Stamps, Blake W; Boyd, Eric S; Spear, John R

    2017-07-03

    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 H 2 , CH 4 , and CO feature prominently in many of their predicted metabolisms. Despite 25 years of intense study, key questions remain on life in the deep subsurface, including whether it is endemic and the extent of its involvement in the anaerobic formation and degradation of hydrocarbons. Emergent data from cultivation and next-generation sequencing approaches continue to provide promising new hints to answer these questions. As Gold suggested, and as has become increasingly evident, to better understand the subsurface is critical to further understanding the Earth, life, the evolution of life, and the potential for life elsewhere. To this end, we suggest the need to develop a robust network of interdisciplinary scientists and accessible field sites for long-term monitoring of the Earth's subsurface in the form of a deep subsurface microbiome initiative.

  2. Biosphere 2: The True Story.

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Keeffe, Michael

    1992-01-01

    Discusses the history and current developments of the Biosphere 2 Project, a prototype for enclosed self-sustaining structures for space colonization built in the Arizona Desert. Biosphere 2 was created to educate and provide solutions to environmental problems and revenue from research. (MCO)

  3. The Earth's Biosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    2002-01-01

    In the last five years, scientists have been able to monitor our changing planet in ways never before possible. The Sea-viewing Wide Field-of-View Sensor (SeaWiFS), aboard the OrbView-2 satellite, has given researchers an unprecedented view of the biological engine that drives life on Earth-the countless forms of plants that cover the land and fill the oceans. 'There is no question the Earth is changing. SeaWiFS has enabled us, for the first time, to monitor the biological consequences of that change-to see how the things we do, as well as natural variability, affect the Earth's ability to support life,' said Gene Carl Feldman, SeaWiFS project manager at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Md. SeaWiFS data, based on continuous daily global observations, have helped scientists make a more accurate assessment of the oceans' role in the global carbon cycle. The data provide a key parameter in a number of ecological and environmental studies as well as global climate-change modeling. The images of the Earth's changing land, ocean and atmosphere from SeaWiFS have documented many previously unrecognized phenomena. The image above shows the global biosphere from June 2002 measured by SeaWiFS. Data in the oceans is chlorophyll concentration, a measure of the amount of phytoplankton (microscopic plants) living in the ocean. On land SeaWiFS measures Normalized Difference Vegetation Index, an indication of the density of plant growth. For more information and images, read: SeaWiFS Sensor Marks Five Years Documenting Earth'S Dynamic Biosphere Image courtesy SeaWiFS project and copyright Orbimage.

  4. Subsurface probing

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lytle, R.J.

    1978-01-01

    Imaging techniques that can be used to translate seismic and electromagnetic wave signals into visual representation are briefly discussed. The application of these techniques is illustrated on the example of determining the subsurface structure of a proposed power plant. Imaging makes the wave signals intelligible to the non-geologists. R and D work needed in this area are tabulated

  5. Trends and Future Challenges in Sampling the Deep Terrestrial Biosphere

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael J Wilkins

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available Research in the deep terrestrial biosphere is driven by interest in novel biodiversity and metabolisms, biogeochemical cycling, and the impact of human activities on this ecosystem. As this interest continues to grow, it is important to ensure that when subsurface investigations are proposed, materials recovered from the subsurface are sampled and preserved in an appropriate manner to limit contamination and ensure preservation of accurate microbial, geochemical, and mineralogical signatures. On February 20th, 2014, a workshop on Trends and Future Challenges in Sampling The Deep Subsurface was coordinated in Columbus, Ohio by The Ohio State University and West Virginia University faculty, and sponsored by The Ohio State University and the Sloan Foundation’s Deep Carbon Observatory. The workshop aims were to identify and develop best practices for the collection, preservation, and analysis of terrestrial deep rock samples. This document summarizes the information shared during this workshop.

  6. Trends and future challenges in sampling the deep terrestrial biosphere.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilkins, Michael J; Daly, Rebecca A; Mouser, Paula J; Trexler, Ryan; Sharma, Shihka; Cole, David R; Wrighton, Kelly C; Biddle, Jennifer F; Denis, Elizabeth H; Fredrickson, Jim K; Kieft, Thomas L; Onstott, Tullis C; Peterson, Lee; Pfiffner, Susan M; Phelps, Tommy J; Schrenk, Matthew O

    2014-01-01

    Research in the deep terrestrial biosphere is driven by interest in novel biodiversity and metabolisms, biogeochemical cycling, and the impact of human activities on this ecosystem. As this interest continues to grow, it is important to ensure that when subsurface investigations are proposed, materials recovered from the subsurface are sampled and preserved in an appropriate manner to limit contamination and ensure preservation of accurate microbial, geochemical, and mineralogical signatures. On February 20th, 2014, a workshop on "Trends and Future Challenges in Sampling The Deep Subsurface" was coordinated in Columbus, Ohio by The Ohio State University and West Virginia University faculty, and sponsored by The Ohio State University and the Sloan Foundation's Deep Carbon Observatory. The workshop aims were to identify and develop best practices for the collection, preservation, and analysis of terrestrial deep rock samples. This document summarizes the information shared during this workshop.

  7. Biosphere reserves: Attributes for success.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Cuong, Chu; Dart, Peter; Hockings, Marc

    2017-03-01

    Biosphere reserves established under the UNESCO Man and the Biosphere Program aim to harmonise biodiversity conservation and sustainable development. Concerns over the extent to which the reserve network was living up to this ideal led to the development of a new strategy in 1995 (the Seville Strategy) to enhance the operation of the network of reserves. An evaluation of effectiveness of management of the biosphere reserve network was called for as part of this strategy. Expert opinion was assembled through a Delphi Process to identify successful and less successful reserves and investigate common factors influencing success or failure. Ninety biosphere reserves including sixty successful and thirty less successful reserves in 42 countries across all five Man and the Biosphere Program regions were identified. Most successful sites are the post-Seville generation while the majority of unsuccessful sites are pre-Seville that are managed as national parks and have not been amended to conform to the characteristics that are meant to define a biosphere reserve. Stakeholder participation and collaboration, governance, finance and resources, management, and awareness and communication are the most influential factors in the success or failure of the biosphere reserves. For success, the biosphere reserve concept needs to be clearly understood and applied through landscape zoning. Designated reserves then need a management system with inclusive good governance, strong participation and collaboration, adequate finance and human resource allocation and stable and responsible management and implementation. All rather obvious but it is difficult to achieve without commitment to the biosphere reserve concept by the governance authorities. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. The Biosphere International Peer Review

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Van Luik, Abraham

    2002-01-01

    Abe van Luik (US DOE- YM, USA), ended the presentation by giving feedback from the IAEA peer review on the biosphere modelling strategy developed by the DOE Yucca Mountain Site Characterisation Office (YMSCO). This review was based on available international standards and guidance. The peer review team was constituted of both experts from regulatory and waste management organisations and national advisory committees. The implementation of the review consisted of an examination of biosphere reports mainly regarding the modelling and question and answer exchanges. The final report was submitted in April 2000. It contained twenty-three recommendations within two broad classifications; one concerning the regulatory framework, the other one regarding the framework to increase stakeholders' confidence in modelling. The three main categories of recommendations were outlined, namely (i) the DOE' s Biosphere assessment Approach, (ii) the definition of the biosphere system, and (iii) the model development, data and results. Regarding in particular the treatment of the uncertainties in the biosphere, it was viewed as a key issue during the review and thus it will be re-evaluated in the future performance assessment. The summary highlighted most of the recommendations received are to be acted on, and are to be included in the License Application plan for biosphere modelling

  9. Microbial activity in the marine deep biosphere: Progress and prospects

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Beth N Orcutt

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available The vast marine deep biosphere consists of microbial habitats within sediment, pore waters, upper basaltic crust and the fluids that circulate throughout it. A wide range of temperature, pressure, pH, and electron donor and acceptor conditions exists – all of which can combine to affect carbon and nutrient cycling and result in gradients on spatial scales ranging from millimeters to kilometers. Diverse and mostly uncharacterized microorganisms live in these habitats, and potentially play a role in mediating global scale biogeochemical processes. Quantifying the rates at which microbial activity in the subsurface occurs is a challenging endeavor, yet developing an understanding of these rates is essential to determine the impact of subsurface life on Earth's global biogeochemical cycles, and for understanding how microorganisms in these "extreme" environments survive (or even thrive. Here, we synthesize recent advances and discoveries pertaining to microbial activity in the marine deep subsurface, and we highlight topics about which there is still little understanding and suggest potential paths forward to address them. This publication is the result of a workshop held in August 2012 by the NSF-funded Center for Dark Energy Biosphere Investigations (C-DEBI "theme team" on microbial activity (www.darkenergybiosphere.org.

  10. Microbial activity in the marine deep biosphere: progress and prospects

    Science.gov (United States)

    Orcutt, Beth N.; LaRowe, Douglas E.; Biddle, Jennifer F.; Colwell, Frederick S.; Glazer, Brian T.; Reese, Brandi Kiel; Kirkpatrick, John B.; Lapham, Laura L.; Mills, Heath J.; Sylvan, Jason B.; Wankel, Scott D.; Wheat, C. Geoff

    2013-01-01

    The vast marine deep biosphere consists of microbial habitats within sediment, pore waters, upper basaltic crust and the fluids that circulate throughout it. A wide range of temperature, pressure, pH, and electron donor and acceptor conditions exists—all of which can combine to affect carbon and nutrient cycling and result in gradients on spatial scales ranging from millimeters to kilometers. Diverse and mostly uncharacterized microorganisms live in these habitats, and potentially play a role in mediating global scale biogeochemical processes. Quantifying the rates at which microbial activity in the subsurface occurs is a challenging endeavor, yet developing an understanding of these rates is essential to determine the impact of subsurface life on Earth's global biogeochemical cycles, and for understanding how microorganisms in these “extreme” environments survive (or even thrive). Here, we synthesize recent advances and discoveries pertaining to microbial activity in the marine deep subsurface, and we highlight topics about which there is still little understanding and suggest potential paths forward to address them. This publication is the result of a workshop held in August 2012 by the NSF-funded Center for Dark Energy Biosphere Investigations (C-DEBI) “theme team” on microbial activity (www.darkenergybiosphere.org). PMID:23874326

  11. Microbial activity in the marine deep biosphere: progress and prospects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Orcutt, Beth N; Larowe, Douglas E; Biddle, Jennifer F; Colwell, Frederick S; Glazer, Brian T; Reese, Brandi Kiel; Kirkpatrick, John B; Lapham, Laura L; Mills, Heath J; Sylvan, Jason B; Wankel, Scott D; Wheat, C Geoff

    2013-01-01

    The vast marine deep biosphere consists of microbial habitats within sediment, pore waters, upper basaltic crust and the fluids that circulate throughout it. A wide range of temperature, pressure, pH, and electron donor and acceptor conditions exists-all of which can combine to affect carbon and nutrient cycling and result in gradients on spatial scales ranging from millimeters to kilometers. Diverse and mostly uncharacterized microorganisms live in these habitats, and potentially play a role in mediating global scale biogeochemical processes. Quantifying the rates at which microbial activity in the subsurface occurs is a challenging endeavor, yet developing an understanding of these rates is essential to determine the impact of subsurface life on Earth's global biogeochemical cycles, and for understanding how microorganisms in these "extreme" environments survive (or even thrive). Here, we synthesize recent advances and discoveries pertaining to microbial activity in the marine deep subsurface, and we highlight topics about which there is still little understanding and suggest potential paths forward to address them. This publication is the result of a workshop held in August 2012 by the NSF-funded Center for Dark Energy Biosphere Investigations (C-DEBI) "theme team" on microbial activity (www.darkenergybiosphere.org).

  12. Ontogeny of canine dimorphism in extant hominoids.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schwartz, G T; Dean, C

    2001-07-01

    Many behavioral and ecological factors influence the degree of expression of canine dimorphism for different reasons. Regardless of its socioecological importance, we know virtually nothing about the processes responsible for the development of canine dimorphism. Our aim here is to describe the developmental process(es) regulating canine dimorphism in extant hominoids, using histological markers of tooth growth. Teeth preserve a permanent record of their ontogeny in the form of short- and long-period incremental markings in both enamel and dentine. We selected 52 histological sections of sexed hominoid canine teeth from a total sample of 115, from which we calculated the time and rate of cuspal enamel formation and the rate at which ameloblasts differentiate along the future enamel-dentine junction (EDJ) to the end of crown formation. Thus, we were able to reconstruct longitudinal growth curves for height attainment in male and female hominoid canines. Male hominoids consistently take longer to form canine crowns than do females (although not significantly so for our sample of Homo). Male orangutans and gorillas occasionally take up to twice as long as females to complete enamel formation. The mean ranges of female canine crown formation times are similar in Pan, Gorilla, and Pongo. Interspecific differences between female Pan canine crown heights and those of Gorilla and Pongo, which are taller, result from differences in rates of growth. Differences in canine crown heights between male Pan and the taller, more dimorphic male Gorilla and Pongo canines result both from differences in total time taken to form enamel and from faster rates of growth in Gorilla and Pongo. Although modern human canines do not emerge as significantly dimorphic in this study, it is well-known that sexual dimorphism in canine crown height exists. Larger samples of sexed modern human canines are therefore needed to identify clearly what underlies this. Copyright 2001 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  13. Molecular phylogeny of extant Holothuroidea (Echinodermata).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, Allison K; Kerr, Alexander M; Paulay, Gustav; Reich, Mike; Wilson, Nerida G; Carvajal, Jose I; Rouse, Greg W

    2017-06-01

    Sea cucumbers (Holothuroidea) are a morphologically diverse, ecologically important, and economically valued clade of echinoderms; however, the understanding of the overall systematics of the group remains controversial. Here, we present a phylogeny of extant Holothuroidea assessed with maximum parsimony, maximum likelihood, and Bayesian approaches using approximately 4.3kb of mt- (COI, 16S, 12S) and nDNA (H3, 18S, 28S) sequences from 82 holothuroid terminals representing 23 of the 27 widely-accepted family-ranked taxa. Currently five holothuroid taxa of ordinal rank are accepted. We find that three of the five orders are non-monophyletic, and we revise the taxonomy of the groups accordingly. Apodida is sister to the rest of Holothuroidea, here considered Actinopoda. Within Actinopoda, Elasipodida in part is sister to the remaining Actinopoda. This latter clade, comprising holothuroids with respiratory trees, is now called Pneumonophora. The traditional Aspidochirotida is paraphyletic, with representatives from three orders (Molpadida, Dendrochirotida, and Elasipodida in part) nested within. Therefore, we discontinue the use of Aspidochirotida and instead erect Holothuriida as the sister group to the remaining Pneumonophora, here termed Neoholothuriida. We found four well-supported major clades in Neoholothuriida: Dendrochirotida, Molpadida and two new clades, Synallactida and Persiculida. The mapping of traditionally-used morphological characters in holothuroid systematics onto the phylogeny revealed marked homoplasy in most characters demonstrating that further taxonomic revision of Holothuroidea is required. Two time-tree analyses, one based on calibrations for uncontroversial crown group dates for Eleutherozoa, Echinozoa and Holothuroidea and another using these calibrations plus four more from within Holothuroidea, showed major discrepancies, suggesting that fossils of Holothuroidea may need reassessment in terms of placing these forms with existing crown

  14. Visualizing Organic Textures and Biosignatures: Analysis of the Deep Biosphere, Meteorites, and Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bhartia, R.

    2017-12-01

    Understanding life in the subsurface offers a unique understanding of how we can search for potential biosignatures on Mars. The spatial distri- bution of communities in this nutrient limited envi- ronment can be co-located with mineral facies, associ- ated to morphological features, or bound to zones of high potential energy. Comparing these organic textures to abotically driven processes in meteorites, when coupled to characterization of the organic con- tent, spatial relationships to mineralogical and ele- mental textures, and morphology will aid in our under- standing of the likely provenance of organics on Mars. Often we approach biosignatures detection with an earth-centric perspective where we assume that extant or ancient life leaves behind visible indicators; either as pigments used to absorb energy from the sun/radiation, protectant from UV radiation, or as veri- gated mineral facies that may persist in the rock rec- ord. Our analysis of subsurface life, a region that is decoupled from the photozone (decoupled from photo- synthesis) and/or exists in a nutrient limited environ- ment, has shown that we need to capitalize on a wider range of the electromagnetic spectrum over multiple spatial scales to understand where microbial life may exist, how they make a living, and how/if their signa- tures will persist geological time. Similar to the approach of the NAI Life Under- ground program, the Mars 2020 project includes a suite of instruments operating over the meter to micrometer scale that will observe the surface (and near subsur- face) of Mars from gamma rays to the IR - a range where minerals and organics reflect, absorb, and vi- brate. More specifically, the combined capabilities of both SHERLOC (a deep UV Raman/fluorescence spectrometer) and PIXL (an X-ray fluorescence spectrometer), spatial maps of organics minerals and elements will be correlated to morphology and textures to assess potential biosignatures. We present here our results of a spectral

  15. Subsurface transport program: Research summary

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1987-01-01

    DOE's research program in subsurface transport is designed to provide a base of fundamental scientific information so that the geochemical, hydrological, and biological mechanisms that contribute to the transport and long term fate of energy related contaminants in subsurface ecosystems can be understood. Understanding the physical and chemical mechanisms that control the transport of single and co-contaminants is the underlying concern of the program. Particular attention is given to interdisciplinary research and to geosphere-biosphere interactions. The scientific results of the program will contribute to resolving Departmental questions related to the disposal of energy-producing and defense wastes. The background papers prepared in support of this document contain additional information on the relevance of the research in the long term to energy-producing technologies. Detailed scientific plans and other research documents are available for high priority research areas, for example, in subsurface transport of organic chemicals and mixtures and in the microbiology of deep aquifers. 5 figs., 1 tab

  16. The Biosphere: A Decadal Vision

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peterson, David L.; Curran, Paul J.; Mlynzcak, Marty; Miller, Richard

    2003-01-01

    This paper focuses on biosphere-climate interactions including the influences of human activities. Recognizing this is only one aspect of biospheric processes, this places an emphasis of those biogeochemical processes that have a profound effect on numerous other aspects of the biosphere and the services it provides, services which are critical to sustaining life on Earth. And, the paper will focus on the various scientific aspects of assessing the availability of fresh water, including its sensitivity to climate variance and land use changes. Finally, this paper hopes to emphasize the potential role that greatly expanded space observations and interactive modeling can play in developing our understanding of Earth and its the living systems.

  17. Viral infections as controlling factors for the deep biosphere? (Invited)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Engelen, B.; Engelhardt, T.; Sahlberg, M.; Cypionka, H.

    2009-12-01

    The marine deep biosphere represents the largest biotope on Earth. Throughout the last years, we have obtained interesting insights into its microbial community composition. However, one component that was completely overlooked so far is the viral inventory of deep-subsurface sediments. While viral infections were identified to have a major impact on the benthic microflora of deep-sea surface sediments (Danavaro et al. 2008), no studies were performed on deep-biosphere samples, so far. As grazers probably play only a minor role in anoxic and highly compressed deep sediments, viruses might be the main “predators” for indigenous microorganisms. Furthermore, the release of cell components, called “the viral shunt”, could have a major impact on the deep biosphere in providing labile organic compounds to non-infected microorganisms in these generally nutrient depleted sediments. However, direct counting of viruses in sediments is highly challenging due to the small size of viruses and the high background of small particles. Even molecular surveys using “universal” PCR primers that target phage-specific genes fail due to the vast phage diversity. One solution for this problem is the lysogenic viral life cycle as many bacteriophages integrate their DNA into the host genome. It is estimated that up to 70% of cultivated bacteria contain prophages within their genome. Therefore, culture collections (Batzke et al. 2007) represent an archive of the viral composition within the respective habitat. These prophages can be induced to become free phage particles in stimulation experiments in which the host cells are set under certain stress situations such as a treatment with UV exposure or DNA-damaging antibiotics. The study of the viral component within the deep biosphere offers to answer the following questions: To which extent are deep-biosphere populations controlled by viral infections? What is the inter- and intra-specific diversity and the host-specific viral

  18. Lignocellulose deconstruction in the biosphere

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bomble, Yannick J.; Lin, Chien-Yuan; Amore, Antonella; Wei, Hui; Holwerda, Evert K.; Ciesielski, Peter N.; Donohoe, Bryon S.; Decker, Stephen R.; Lynd, Lee R.; Himmel, Michael E.

    2017-12-01

    Microorganisms have evolved different and yet complementary mechanisms to degrade biomass in the biosphere. The chemical biology of lignocellulose deconstruction is a complex and intricate process that appears to vary in response to specific ecosystems. These microorganisms rely on simple to complex arrangements of glycoside hydrolases to conduct most of these polysaccharide depolymerization reactions and also, as discovered more recently, oxidative mechanisms via lytic polysaccharide monooxygenases or non-enzymatic Fenton reactions which are used to enhance deconstruction. It is now clear that these deconstruction mechanisms are often more efficient in the presence of the microorganisms. In general, a major fraction of the total plant biomass deconstruction in the biosphere results from the action of various microorganisms, primarily aerobic bacteria and fungi, as well as a variety of anaerobic bacteria. Beyond carbon recycling, specialized microorganisms interact with plants to manage nitrogen in the biosphere. Understanding the interplay between these organisms within or across ecosystems is crucial to further our grasp of chemical recycling in the biosphere and also enables optimization of the burgeoning plant-based bioeconomy.

  19. LIMITS OF THE EARTH BIOSPHERE

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Karel KUDRNA

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Evaluation of the state of CO2 accumulation in the atmosphere demands knowledge on possibilities of the biosphere – its photosynthetizing apparatus, conditions and limits of absorption. A decisive precondition is to determine relation of CO2 accumulation by photosynthesis in dependence on the water balance, especially on its control quantity – transpiration, which is stabilized by supporting of underground waters.

  20. Lignocellulose deconstruction in the biosphere.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bomble, Yannick J; Lin, Chien-Yuan; Amore, Antonella; Wei, Hui; Holwerda, Evert K; Ciesielski, Peter N; Donohoe, Bryon S; Decker, Stephen R; Lynd, Lee R; Himmel, Michael E

    2017-12-01

    Microorganisms have evolved different and yet complementary mechanisms to degrade biomass in the biosphere. The chemical biology of lignocellulose deconstruction is a complex and intricate process that appears to vary in response to specific ecosystems. These microorganisms rely on simple to complex arrangements of glycoside hydrolases to conduct most of these polysaccharide depolymerization reactions and also, as discovered more recently, oxidative mechanisms via lytic polysaccharide monooxygenases or non-enzymatic Fenton reactions which are used to enhance deconstruction. It is now clear that these deconstruction mechanisms are often more efficient in the presence of the microorganisms. In general, a major fraction of the total plant biomass deconstruction in the biosphere results from the action of various microorganisms, primarily aerobic bacteria and fungi, as well as a variety of anaerobic bacteria. Beyond carbon recycling, specialized microorganisms interact with plants to manage nitrogen in the biosphere. Understanding the interplay between these organisms within or across ecosystems is crucial to further our grasp of chemical recycling in the biosphere and also enables optimization of the burgeoning plant-based bioeconomy. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  1. Chapter 2. Radionuclides in the biosphere

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Toelgyessy, J.; Harangozo, M.

    2000-01-01

    This is a chapter of textbook of radioecology for university students. In this chapter authors deal with role of radionuclides in the biosphere. Chapter consists of next parts: (1) Natural radionuclides in biosphere; (2) Man-made radionuclides in the biosphere; (3) Ecologically important radionuclides; (4) Natural background; (5) Radiotoxicity and (6) Paths of transfer of radionuclides from the source to human

  2. Putting the Deep Biosphere on the Map for Oceanography Courses: Gas Hydrates As a Case Study for the Deep Biosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sikorski, J. J.; Briggs, B. R.

    2014-12-01

    The ocean is essential for life on our planet. It covers 71% of the Earth's surface, is the source of the water we drink, the air we breathe, and the food we eat. Yet, the exponential growth in human population is putting the ocean and thus life on our planet at risk. However, based on student evaluations from our introductory oceanography course it is clear that our students have deficiencies in ocean literacy that impact their ability to recognize that the ocean and humans are inextricably connected. Furthermore, life present in deep subsurface marine environments is also interconnected to the study of the ocean, yet the deep biosphere is not typically covered in undergraduate oceanography courses. In an effort to improve student ocean literacy we developed an instructional module on the deep biosphere focused on gas hydrate deposits. Specifically, our module utilizes Google Earth and cutting edge research about microbial life in the ocean to support three inquiry-based activities that each explore different facets of gas hydrates (i.e. environmental controls, biologic controls, and societal implications). The relevant nature of the proposed module also makes it possible for instructors of introductory geology courses to modify module components to discuss related topics, such as climate, energy, and geologic hazards. This work, which will be available online as a free download, is a solid contribution toward increasing the available teaching resources focused on the deep biosphere for geoscience educators.

  3. Drastic environmental change and its effects on a planetary biosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schulze-Makuch, Dirk; Irwin, Louis N.; Fairén, Alberto G.

    2013-07-01

    Environmental conditions can change drastically and rapidly during the natural history of a planetary body. These changes affect the biosphere and can spur evolution via the mechanism of directional selection leading to the innovation of new processes and forms of life, or alternatively leading to the extinction of certain life forms. Based on the natural history of Earth, the effect on a planet's biosphere depends on three factors: (1) the nature and time scale of change, (2) the composition of the biosphere prior to change, and (3) the nature of the environment following the change. Though Earth has undergone various periods of drastic environmental change, life has shown an enormous resiliency and became more diverse and complex as a consequence of these events. Mars and Venus have undergone even larger environmental changes, both from habitable conditions under which the origin of life (or transfer of life from Earth) seem plausible, to a dry and cold planet punctuated by wetter conditions, and a hyperthermic greenhouse, respectively. Given its planetary history, life on Mars could have retreated to a psychrophilic lifestyle in the deep subsurface or to environmental near-surface niches, such as hydrothermal regions and caves. Further, strong directional selection could have pushed putative martian life to evolve alternating cycles between active and dormant forms, as well as the innovation of new traits adapted to challenging near-surface conditions. Life in the subsurface or on the surface of Venus seems impossible today, but microorganisms may have adapted to thrive in the lower cloud layer, possibly using a biochemical strategy analogous to Photosystem I and chemoautotrophic sulfur metabolism, and employing cycloocta sulfur for UV protection.

  4. Biospheres and solar system exploration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paine, Thomas O.

    1990-01-01

    The implications of biosphere technology is briefly examined. The exploration status and prospects of each world in the solar system is briefly reviewed, including the asteroid belt, the moon, and comets. Five program elements are listed as particularly critical for future interplanetary operations during the coming extraterrestrial century. They include the following: (1) a highway to Space (earth orbits); (2) Orbital Spaceports to support spacecraft assembly, storage, repair, maintenance, refueling, launch, and recovery; (3) a Bridge Between Worlds to transport cargo and crews to the moon and beyond to Mars; (4) Prospecting and Resource Utilization Systems to map and characterize the resources of planets, moons, and asteroids; and (5) Closed Ecology Biospheres. The progress in these five field is reviewed.

  5. World campaign for the biosphere

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Worthington, E.B.

    1982-07-01

    Four aims are included in the Draft Declaration about the Champaign for The Biosphere; 1) education and allied activities, 2) scientific understanding, 3) practical activities, and 4) accommodation of humanity to The Biosphere. There is a strong case for application to practical affairs of what is already known. The campaign might focus initially on problems that illustrate changing attitudes which are the result of research and experience. Examples include the Green revolution in agriculture and, in engineering, the swing of changing attitudes to the primary and ancillary effects of large projects for hydro-power and irrigation. The need for conservation of natural resources by rational, ecologically wise use is stressed. Educational and medical programs for planned parenthood are already available. The problem will be to boost them to top priority in the countries that need them most. (JMT)

  6. Biospheric theory and report on overall Biosphere 2 design and performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allen, J

    1997-01-01

    This article reviews the structural complexity of Biospheres as well as Vernadsky's two laws of biospherics generalized into laws of thermodynamics. The history of designing and building apparatuses to test biospheric hypothesis are summarized: Drs. Shepelev and Gitelson's experiments in Russia, and Space Biospheres Ventures' 10,974 ft3 Test Module and 3.15-acre Biosphere 2 systems. Critical parameters in building Biosphere 2 are outlined: species lists, state descriptors, ecosystems, key variables, closure, and the necessity of observer-managers. Some results of the 2-year Mission One experiment in Biosphere 2 are summarized: human health, light-CO2 coupling, food production, redundancy in maintenance. Change made to the Biosphere 2 system after the first 2-year mission and before the start-up of the second mission are listed. As well, the future of artificial biospheres is considered.

  7. Energy flows of the biosphere

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gorshkov, V.G.

    1980-01-01

    Mankind consumes more than 90% of the animal production of the world. The locking of a significant part of the biosphere energy flow onto the anthropogenic chain leads to the dislodging of natural forms of organisms of the biosphere, change of its functioning and self-regulation. For the maintenance of stable existence of a small set of cultivated plants and domestic animals not forming the complete set indispensable for reaction to the change of natural conditions, man is compelled to follow the path of auxiliary investments of energy and to compensate for the destruction of closed circulations of food substances by the flow of fertilizers extracted from natural deposits. Energy assessments show the lack of realism of many projects for increasing the global energy flow in the anthropogenic channel by increasing the full flow of energy of the biosphere. To obtain the net production of the contemporary plowed field in hotbed on the basis of hydroponics there is required 2 x 10/sup 14/ watts of additional energy. To provide for the inflow of such an amount of energy (and also vast volumes of fresh water) presents extremely complicated problems. According to the author's calculations, in a provisional conversion of all production of green plants, all gas and petroleum and edible food with an efficiency equal to 1%, it is possible to provide food reserves equal to one annual harvest of the plowed fields of the world of 2 x 10/sup 9/ tons.

  8. In-situ detection of microbial life in the deep biosphere in igneous ocean crust

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Everett Cosio Salas

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available The deep biosphere is a major frontier to science. Recent studies have shown the presence and activity of cells in deep marine sediments and in the continental deep biosphere. Volcanic lavas in the deep ocean subsurface, through which substantial fluid flow occurs, present another potentially massive deep biosphere. We present results from the deployment of a novel in-situ logging tool designed to detect microbial life harbored in a deep, native, borehole environment within igneous oceanic crust, using deep ultraviolet native fluorescence spectroscopy. Results demonstrate the predominance of microbial-like signatures within the borehole environment, with densities in the range of 105 cells/mL. Based on transport and flux models, we estimate that such a concentration of microbial cells could not be supported by transport through the crust, suggesting in situ growth of these communities.

  9. In situ Detection of Microbial Life in the Deep Biosphere in Igneous Ocean Crust.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salas, Everett C; Bhartia, Rohit; Anderson, Louise; Hug, William F; Reid, Ray D; Iturrino, Gerardo; Edwards, Katrina J

    2015-01-01

    The deep biosphere is a major frontier to science. Recent studies have shown the presence and activity of cells in deep marine sediments and in the continental deep biosphere. Volcanic lavas in the deep ocean subsurface, through which substantial fluid flow occurs, present another potentially massive deep biosphere. We present results from the deployment of a novel in situ logging tool designed to detect microbial life harbored in a deep, native, borehole environment within igneous oceanic crust, using deep ultraviolet native fluorescence spectroscopy. Results demonstrate the predominance of microbial-like signatures within the borehole environment, with densities in the range of 10(5) cells/mL. Based on transport and flux models, we estimate that such a concentration of microbial cells could not be supported by transport through the crust, suggesting in situ growth of these communities.

  10. Mars Analog Research and Technology Experiment (MARTE): A Simulated Mars Drilling Mission to Search for Subsurface Life at the Rio Tinto, Spain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stoker, Carol; Lemke, Larry; Mandell, Humboldt; McKay, David; George, Jeffrey; Gomez-Alvera, Javier; Amils, Ricardo; Stevens, Todd; Miller, David

    2003-01-01

    The MARTE (Mars Astrobiology Research and Technology Experiment) project was selected by the new NASA ASTEP program, which supports field experiments having an equal emphasis on Astrobiology science and technology development relevant to future Astrobiology missions. MARTE will search for a hypothesized subsurface anaerobic chemoautotrophic biosphere in the region of the Tinto River in southwestern Spain while also demonstrating technology needed to search for a subsurface biosphere on Mars. The experiment is informed by the strategy for searching for life on Mars.

  11. Big bang in the evolution of extant malaria parasites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hayakawa, Toshiyuki; Culleton, Richard; Otani, Hiroto; Horii, Toshihiro; Tanabe, Kazuyuki

    2008-10-01

    Malaria parasites (genus Plasmodium) infect all classes of terrestrial vertebrates and display host specificity in their infections. It is therefore assumed that malaria parasites coevolved intimately with their hosts. Here, we propose a novel scenario of malaria parasite-host coevolution. A phylogenetic tree constructed using the malaria parasite mitochondrial genome reveals that the extant primate, rodent, bird, and reptile parasite lineages rapidly diverged from a common ancestor during an evolutionary short time period. This rapid diversification occurred long after the establishment of the primate, rodent, bird, and reptile host lineages, which implies that host-switch events contributed to the rapid diversification of extant malaria parasite lineages. Interestingly, the rapid diversification coincides with the radiation of the mammalian genera, suggesting that adaptive radiation to new mammalian hosts triggered the rapid diversification of extant malaria parasite lineages.

  12. On the search for extant life on Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klein, H. P.

    1996-01-01

    Proposals for continuing the search for extant life on Mars are primarily predicated on the assumption that specialized environmental niches that could support a biota may exist on the planet. Before attempting any critical tests for extant organisms, either in situ or on returned samples, it is imperative to determine whether any such sites actually exist. If, through remote sensing and landed instrumentation, sites of potential biological interest are discovered and characterized, biological tests can then more effectively be planned to elicit the presence of organisms that are adapted to living in these particular environments.

  13. The biomass theme 1 project: Reference biospheres

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Crossland, I.; Torres-Vidal, C.

    2000-01-01

    The long-term safety of a facility for the disposal of long-lived radioactive waste would principally depend upon a combination of engineered and natural barriers which would ensure that the radioactivity was prevented from reaching the biosphere. To assess radiological safety over extended timescales requires the construction of 'assessment biospheres'. A possibility is the development of 'Reference Biospheres', a series of stylised, internationally-agreed assessment biospheres that could be used to support post-closure assessments in a wide variety of situations. Current activities in this subject area are described. (author)

  14. DISRUPTIVE EVENT BIOSPHERE DOSE CONVERSION FACTOR ANALYSIS

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    M.A. Wasiolek

    2005-01-01

    This analysis report is one of the technical reports containing documentation of the Environmental Radiation Model for Yucca Mountain, Nevada (ERMYN), a biosphere model supporting the total system performance assessment (TSPA) for the license application (LA) for the Yucca Mountain repository. This analysis report describes the development of biosphere dose conversion factors (BDCFs) for the volcanic ash exposure scenario, and the development of dose factors for calculating inhalation dose during volcanic eruption. A graphical representation of the documentation hierarchy for the ERMYN is presented in Figure 1-1. This figure shows the interrelationships among the products (i.e., analysis and model reports) developed for biosphere modeling and provides an understanding of how this analysis report contributes to biosphere modeling. This report is one of two reports that develop biosphere BDCFs, which are input parameters for the TSPA model. The Biosphere Model Report (BSC 2004 [DIRS 169460]) describes in detail the ERMYN conceptual model and mathematical model. The input parameter reports, shown to the right of the Biosphere Model Report in Figure 1-1, contain detailed descriptions of the model input parameters, their development and the relationship between the parameters and specific features, events and processes (FEPs). This report describes biosphere model calculations and their output, the BDCFs, for the volcanic ash exposure scenario. This analysis receives direct input from the outputs of the ''Biosphere Model Report'' (BSC 2004 [DIRS 169460]) and from the five analyses that develop parameter values for the biosphere model (BSC 2005 [DIRS 172827]; BSC 2004 [DIRS 169672]; BSC 2004 [DIRS 169673]; BSC 2004 [DIRS 169458]; and BSC 2004 [DIRS 169459]). The results of this report are further analyzed in the ''Biosphere Dose Conversion Factor Importance and Sensitivity Analysis'' (Figure 1-1). The objective of this analysis was to develop the BDCFs for the volcanic

  15. Biosphere modeling for HLW disposal in Japan

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Naito, Morimasa

    2001-01-01

    Concept of Reference Biosphere is defined by 'the set of assumptions and hypotheses that is necessary to provide a consistent basis for calculations of the radiological impact arising from long-term releases of repository-derived radionuclides into the biosphere'. Geological environment and biosphere interface (GBI) is the place having the high probability of introduction of radioactive nuclides to biosphere by groundwater. Reference biosphere methodology, GBI, basic models, assessment context, assumptions concerning the surface environment for the biosphere assessment, nuclides migration process, interaction matrix showing radionuclide transport pathways for biosphere modeling, conceptual model for exposure modes and pathways for each exposure group in the biosphere assessment are explained. Response of the biosphere assessment model is steady, unit flux input (1 Bq/y) of different nuclides (farming exposure group). The dose per unit input of agriculture group is 1 to 3 figures larger than that of other two fisheries groups in the case of river and coastal environment except Po-210. We can calculate easily the dose by determining the dose conversion factors derived from different GBI models. Comparison of flux to dose conversion factors derived from different GBI models is effective to know the properties of each model, process and importance of data. (S.Y.)

  16. Male-limited evolution suggests no extant intralocus sexual conflict ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Male-limited evolution suggests no extant intralocus sexual conflict over the sexually dimorphic cuticular hydrocarbons of Drosophila melanogaster ... Spain; Indian Institute of Science Education and Research, Mohali, Knowledge City, Sector 81, SAS Nagar, Manauli PO 140 306, India; Department of Biology and Centre for ...

  17. Interspecific variations in tracks and trackways from extant crocodylians

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Milàn, Jesper; Hedegaard, Rene

    2010-01-01

    Footprints and trackways from 12 species of extant crocodylians are compared to give an overview of the morphological variation found among the tracks of modern crocodylians. Crocodylians often overprint the manus prints and drag their hind feet along the sediment surface. The extent of tail and ...

  18. Site and Regional Data for Biosphere Assessment BSA-2009 Supplement to Olkiluoto Biosphere Description 2009

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Aro, L.; Haapanen, R.; Puhakka, L.; Hjerpe, T.; Kirkkala, T.; Koivunen, S.; Lahdenperae, A.-M.; Salo, T.; Ikonen, A.T.K.; Helin, J.

    2010-06-01

    The safety case for a spent nuclear fuel repository at Olkiluoto includes a computational safety assessment. A site-specific biosphere assessment is an integral part of them both. In 2009 an assessment was conducted to demonstrate preparedness to apply for construction license to the repository in 2012. As a part of the biosphere assessment, the present conditions at the site are described in Olkiluoto biosphere description report for an analogue of the future conditions being simulated in the safety assessment. This report is a supplement to the biosphere description report of 2009 and documents the site and regional data used in the biosphere assessment 'BSA-2009' with respective rationales. (orig.)

  19. Database description for the biosphere code BIOMOD

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kane, P.; Thorne, M.C.; Coughtrey, P.J.

    1983-03-01

    The development of a biosphere model for use in comparative radiological assessments of UK low and intermediate level waste repositories is discussed. The nature, content and sources of data contained in the four files that comprise the database for the biosphere code BIOMOD are described. (author)

  20. Microbial Communities of the Okinawa Backarc Basin Subvent Biosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brandt, L. D.; House, C. H.

    2014-12-01

    IODP Expedition 331 to the Okinawa backarc basin provided an opportunity to study the microbial stratigraphy within the sediments surrounding a hydrothermal vent. The Okinawa backarc basin is a sedimented region of the seafloor located on a continental margin, and also hosts a hydrothermal network within the subsurface. Site C0014 within the Iheya North hydrothermal field is located 450 m east of the active vent and has a surface temperature of 5°C with no evidence of hydrothermal alteration within the top 10 m. Temperature increases with depth at an estimated rate of 3°C/m and transitions from non-hydrothermal margin sediments to a hydrothermally altered regime below 10 m. Site C0014 is a unique location to study changes in microbial communities with depth, as the hydrothermal system generates a thermally and geochemically restrictive subvent biosphere. In this study, we utilized deep 16S rRNA sequencing of DNA from IODP Expedition 331 Site C0014 sediment horizons in order to assess diversity throughout the sediment column as well as determine the potential limits of the biosphere. Analysis of the amplicon data suggests that Archaea represent a significant proportion of the indigenous community throughout the top 15 m of sediment, where Archaea then abruptly disappear. Furthermore, a deeper classification of Archaeal sequences suggests a transition from a mesophilic community to a potentially thermophilic one, where there is an increasingly stronger signal of Miscellaneous Crenarchaeotic Group (MCG) followed by Terrestrial Hot Spring Crenarchaeotic Group (THSCG). Additionally, there are several horizons in which methanotrophy is likely supported, indicated by peaks in anaerobic methanotrophic Archaea. The cessation of Archaea as well as Chloroflexi, a common marine subsurface bacterial phylum, at approximately 15 meters below seafloor (mbsf) is suggestive of a potential boundary within Site C0014 in which the environmental conditions have become too restrictive

  1. Remote sensing of the biosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    1986-01-01

    The current state of understanding of the biosphere is reviewed, the major scientific issues to be addressed are discussed, and techniques, existing and in need of development, for the science are evaluated. It is primarily concerned with developing the scientific capabilities of remote sensing for advancing the subject. The global nature of the scientific objectives requires the use of space-based techniques. The capability to look at the Earth as a whole was developed only recently. The space program has provided the technology to study the entire Earth from artificial satellites, and thus is a primary force in approaches to planetary biology. Space technology has also permitted comparative studies of planetary atmospheres and surfaces. These studies coupled with the growing awareness of the effects that life has on the entire Earth, are opening new lines of inquiry in science.

  2. Disruptive Event Biosphere Dose Conversion Factor Analysis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    M. A. Wasiolek

    2003-07-21

    This analysis report, ''Disruptive Event Biosphere Dose Conversion Factor Analysis'', is one of the technical reports containing documentation of the ERMYN (Environmental Radiation Model for Yucca Mountain Nevada) biosphere model for the geologic repository at Yucca Mountain, its input parameters, and the application of the model to perform the dose assessment for the repository. The biosphere model is one of a series of process models supporting the Total System Performance Assessment (TSPA) for the Yucca Mountain repository. A graphical representation of the documentation hierarchy for the ERMYN is presented in Figure 1-1. This figure shows the interrelationships among the products (i.e., analysis and model reports) developed for biosphere modeling and provides an understanding of how this analysis report contributes to biosphere modeling. This report is one of the two reports that develop biosphere dose conversion factors (BDCFs), which are input parameters for the TSPA model. The ''Biosphere Model Report'' (BSC 2003 [DIRS 164186]) describes in detail the conceptual model as well as the mathematical model and lists its input parameters. Model input parameters are developed and described in detail in five analysis report (BSC 2003 [DIRS 160964], BSC 2003 [DIRS 160965], BSC 2003 [DIRS 160976], BSC 2003 [DIRS 161239], and BSC 2003 [DIRS 161241]). The objective of this analysis was to develop the BDCFs for the volcanic ash exposure scenario and the dose factors (DFs) for calculating inhalation doses during volcanic eruption (eruption phase of the volcanic event). The volcanic ash exposure scenario is hereafter referred to as the volcanic ash scenario. For the volcanic ash scenario, the mode of radionuclide release into the biosphere is a volcanic eruption through the repository with the resulting entrainment of contaminated waste in the tephra and the subsequent atmospheric transport and dispersion of contaminated material in

  3. Disruptive Event Biosphere Dose Conversion Factor Analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    M. A. Wasiolek

    2003-01-01

    This analysis report, ''Disruptive Event Biosphere Dose Conversion Factor Analysis'', is one of the technical reports containing documentation of the ERMYN (Environmental Radiation Model for Yucca Mountain Nevada) biosphere model for the geologic repository at Yucca Mountain, its input parameters, and the application of the model to perform the dose assessment for the repository. The biosphere model is one of a series of process models supporting the Total System Performance Assessment (TSPA) for the Yucca Mountain repository. A graphical representation of the documentation hierarchy for the ERMYN is presented in Figure 1-1. This figure shows the interrelationships among the products (i.e., analysis and model reports) developed for biosphere modeling and provides an understanding of how this analysis report contributes to biosphere modeling. This report is one of the two reports that develop biosphere dose conversion factors (BDCFs), which are input parameters for the TSPA model. The ''Biosphere Model Report'' (BSC 2003 [DIRS 164186]) describes in detail the conceptual model as well as the mathematical model and lists its input parameters. Model input parameters are developed and described in detail in five analysis report (BSC 2003 [DIRS 160964], BSC 2003 [DIRS 160965], BSC 2003 [DIRS 160976], BSC 2003 [DIRS 161239], and BSC 2003 [DIRS 161241]). The objective of this analysis was to develop the BDCFs for the volcanic ash exposure scenario and the dose factors (DFs) for calculating inhalation doses during volcanic eruption (eruption phase of the volcanic event). The volcanic ash exposure scenario is hereafter referred to as the volcanic ash scenario. For the volcanic ash scenario, the mode of radionuclide release into the biosphere is a volcanic eruption through the repository with the resulting entrainment of contaminated waste in the tephra and the subsequent atmospheric transport and dispersion of contaminated material in the biosphere. The biosphere process

  4. Anthropogenic transformation of the terrestrial biosphere.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ellis, Erle C

    2011-03-13

    Human populations and their use of land have transformed most of the terrestrial biosphere into anthropogenic biomes (anthromes), causing a variety of novel ecological patterns and processes to emerge. To assess whether human populations and their use of land have directly altered the terrestrial biosphere sufficiently to indicate that the Earth system has entered a new geological epoch, spatially explicit global estimates of human populations and their use of land were analysed across the Holocene for their potential to induce irreversible novel transformation of the terrestrial biosphere. Human alteration of the terrestrial biosphere has been significant for more than 8000 years. However, only in the past century has the majority of the terrestrial biosphere been transformed into intensively used anthromes with predominantly novel anthropogenic ecological processes. At present, even were human populations to decline substantially or use of land become far more efficient, the current global extent, duration, type and intensity of human transformation of ecosystems have already irreversibly altered the terrestrial biosphere at levels sufficient to leave an unambiguous geological record differing substantially from that of the Holocene or any prior epoch. It remains to be seen whether the anthropogenic biosphere will be sustained and continue to evolve.

  5. The Search for Sustainable Subsurface Habitats on Mars, and the Sampling of Impact Ejecta

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paula Lindgren

    2010-07-01

    Full Text Available On Earth, the deep subsurface biosphere of both the oceanic and the continental crust is well known for surviving harsh conditions and environments characterized by high temperatures, high pressures, extreme pHs, and the absence of sunlight. The microorganisms of the terrestrial deep biosphere have an excellent capacity for adapting to changing geochemistry, as the alteration of the crust proceeds and the conditions of their habitats slowly change. Despite an almost complete isolation from surface conditions and the surface biosphere, the deep biosphere of the crustal rocks has endured over geologic time. This indicates that the deep biosphere is a self-sufficient system, independent of the global events that occur at the surface, such as impacts, glaciations, sea level fluctuations, and climate changes. With our sustainable terrestrial subsurface biosphere in mind, the subsurface on Mars has often been suggested as the most plausible place to search for fossil Martian life, or even present Martian life. Since the Martian surface is more or less sterile, subsurface settings are the only place on Mars where life could have been sustained over geologic time. To detect a deep biosphere in the Martian basement, drilling is a requirement. However, near future Mars sample return missions are limited by the mission’s payload, which excludes heavy drilling equipment and restrict the missions to only dig the topmost meter of the Martian soil. Therefore, the sampling and analysis of Martian impact ejecta has been suggested as a way of accessing the deeper Martian subsurface without using heavy drilling equipment. Impact cratering is a natural geological process capable of excavating and exposing large amounts of rock material from great depths up to the surface. Several studies of terrestrial impact deposits show the preservation of pre-impact biosignatures, such as fossilized organisms and chemical biological markers. Therefore, if the Martian

  6. Biosphere 2 test module experimentation program

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alling, Abigail; Leigh, Linda S.; Maccallum, Taber; Alvarez-Romo, Norberto

    1990-01-01

    The Biosphere 2 Test Module is a facility which has the capability to do either short or long term closures: five month closures with plants were conducted. Also conducted were investigations of specific problems, such as trace gas purification by bioregenerative systems by in-putting a fixed concentration of a gas and observing its uptake over time. In other Test Module experiments, the concentration of one gas was changed to observe what effects this has on other gases present or on the system. The science of biospherics which encompasses the study of closed biological systems provides an opening into the future in space as well as in the Earth's biosphere.

  7. The Sword of Damocles and the Biosphere

    OpenAIRE

    Cairns, John

    2011-01-01

    The tale of the sword of Damocles can be used to describe the sword hanging by a thread over humankind with the damage it is doing to the present biosphere. The sixth biosphere, or the current biosphere, is experiencing a significant reduction in species caused by human-related activities. The signs of risk have markedly increased by the signs differ considerably from one are to another, and people tend do discount global change because it is unnoticeable in their local area. If humans begin...

  8. Bone histology in extant and fossil penguins (Aves: Sphenisciformes).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ksepka, Daniel T; Werning, Sarah; Sclafani, Michelle; Boles, Zachary M

    2015-11-01

    Substantial changes in bone histology accompany the secondary adaptation to life in the water. This transition is well documented in several lineages of mammals and non-avian reptiles, but has received relatively little attention in birds. This study presents new observations on the long bone microstructure of penguins, based on histological sections from two extant taxa (Spheniscus and Aptenodytes) and eight fossil specimens belonging to stem lineages (†Palaeospheniscus and several indeterminate Eocene taxa). High bone density in penguins results from compaction of the internal cortical tissues, and thus penguin bones are best considered osteosclerotic rather than pachyostotic. Although the oldest specimens sampled in this study represent stages of penguin evolution that occurred at least 25 million years after the loss of flight, major differences in humeral structure were observed between these Eocene stem taxa and extant taxa. This indicates that the modification of flipper bone microstructure continued long after the initial loss of flight in penguins. It is proposed that two key transitions occurred during the shift from the typical hollow avian humerus to the dense osteosclerotic humerus in penguins. First, a reduction of the medullary cavity occurred due to a decrease in the amount of perimedullary osteoclastic activity. Second, a more solid cortex was achieved by compaction. In extant penguins and †Palaeospheniscus, most of the inner cortex is formed by rapid osteogenesis, resulting an initial latticework of woven-fibered bone. Subsequently, open spaces are filled by slower, centripetal deposition of parallel-fibered bone. Eocene stem penguins formed the initial latticework, but the subsequent round of compaction was less complete, and thus open spaces remained in the adult bone. In contrast to the humerus, hindlimb bones from Eocene stem penguins had smaller medullary cavities and thus higher compactness values compared with extant taxa. Although

  9. Disruptive Event Biosphere Dose Conversion Factor Analysis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    M. Wasiolek

    2004-09-08

    This analysis report is one of the technical reports containing documentation of the Environmental Radiation Model for Yucca Mountain, Nevada (ERMYN), a biosphere model supporting the total system performance assessment (TSPA) for the license application (LA) for the Yucca Mountain repository. This analysis report describes the development of biosphere dose conversion factors (BDCFs) for the volcanic ash exposure scenario, and the development of dose factors for calculating inhalation dose during volcanic eruption. A graphical representation of the documentation hierarchy for the ERMYN is presented in Figure 1-1. This figure shows the interrelationships among the products (i.e., analysis and model reports) developed for biosphere modeling and provides an understanding of how this analysis report contributes to biosphere modeling. This report is one of two reports that develop biosphere BDCFs, which are input parameters for the TSPA model. The ''Biosphere Model Report'' (BSC 2004 [DIRS 169460]) describes in detail the ERMYN conceptual model and mathematical model. The input parameter reports, shown to the right of the Biosphere Model Report in Figure 1-1, contain detailed descriptions of the model input parameters, their development and the relationship between the parameters and specific features, events and processes (FEPs). This report describes biosphere model calculations and their output, the BDCFs, for the volcanic ash exposure scenario. This analysis receives direct input from the outputs of the ''Biosphere Model Report'' (BSC 2004 [DIRS 169460]) and from the five analyses that develop parameter values for the biosphere model (BSC 2004 [DIRS 169671]; BSC 2004 [DIRS 169672]; BSC 2004 [DIRS 169673]; BSC 2004 [DIRS 169458]; and BSC 2004 [DIRS 169459]). The results of this report are further analyzed in the ''Biosphere Dose Conversion Factor Importance and Sensitivity Analysis''. The objective of this

  10. Disruptive Event Biosphere Dose Conversion Factor Analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    M. Wasiolek

    2004-01-01

    This analysis report is one of the technical reports containing documentation of the Environmental Radiation Model for Yucca Mountain, Nevada (ERMYN), a biosphere model supporting the total system performance assessment (TSPA) for the license application (LA) for the Yucca Mountain repository. This analysis report describes the development of biosphere dose conversion factors (BDCFs) for the volcanic ash exposure scenario, and the development of dose factors for calculating inhalation dose during volcanic eruption. A graphical representation of the documentation hierarchy for the ERMYN is presented in Figure 1-1. This figure shows the interrelationships among the products (i.e., analysis and model reports) developed for biosphere modeling and provides an understanding of how this analysis report contributes to biosphere modeling. This report is one of two reports that develop biosphere BDCFs, which are input parameters for the TSPA model. The ''Biosphere Model Report'' (BSC 2004 [DIRS 169460]) describes in detail the ERMYN conceptual model and mathematical model. The input parameter reports, shown to the right of the Biosphere Model Report in Figure 1-1, contain detailed descriptions of the model input parameters, their development and the relationship between the parameters and specific features, events and processes (FEPs). This report describes biosphere model calculations and their output, the BDCFs, for the volcanic ash exposure scenario. This analysis receives direct input from the outputs of the ''Biosphere Model Report'' (BSC 2004 [DIRS 169460]) and from the five analyses that develop parameter values for the biosphere model (BSC 2004 [DIRS 169671]; BSC 2004 [DIRS 169672]; BSC 2004 [DIRS 169673]; BSC 2004 [DIRS 169458]; and BSC 2004 [DIRS 169459]). The results of this report are further analyzed in the ''Biosphere Dose Conversion Factor Importance and Sensitivity Analysis''. The objective of this analysis was to develop the BDCFs for the volcanic ash

  11. Transport of radionuclides in the biosphere

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bundi, A.

    1983-10-01

    The dispersion of radionuclides in the biosphere and their uptake by man via various nutritional pathways is studied using a compartment model. The sample environment is the area of the lower Limmat and Aare valleys. General considerations of the compartmental description of the biosphere are made. The problem of the description of surface features, in particular soil, sediment and water, is studied in detail using the code BIOPATH. This study is intended to be an example of how a model of the biosphere could be constructed. It is shown that this is a reasonable model to calculate the spreading of radionuclides in the biosphere and that it indicates the relative significance of individual compartments, pathways and radionuclides. Calculated values of dose committment, however, should not be used as reference data for safety analyses. (Auth.)

  12. Nominal Performance Biosphere Dose Conversion Factor Analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    M. Wasiolek

    2004-01-01

    This analysis report is one of the technical reports containing documentation of the Environmental Radiation Model for Yucca Mountain, Nevada (ERMYN), a biosphere model supporting the Total System Performance Assessment (TSPA) for the license application (LA) for the Yucca Mountain repository. This analysis report describes the development of biosphere dose conversion factors (BDCFs) for the groundwater exposure scenario, and the development of conversion factors for assessing compliance with the groundwater protection standard. A graphical representation of the documentation hierarchy for the ERMYN is presented in Figure 1-1. This figure shows the interrelationships among the products (i.e., analysis and model reports) developed for biosphere modeling and provides an understanding of how this analysis report contributes to biosphere modeling. This report is one of two reports that develop biosphere BDCFs, which are input parameters for the TSPA-LA model. The ''Biosphere Model Report'' (BSC 2004 [DIRS 169460]) describes in detail the ERMYN conceptual model and mathematical model. The input parameter reports, shown to the right of the ''Biosphere Model Report'' in Figure 1-1, contain detailed description of the model input parameters, their development, and the relationship between the parameters and specific features events and processes (FEPs). This report describes biosphere model calculations and their output, the BDCFs, for the groundwater exposure scenario. The objectives of this analysis are to develop BDCFs for the groundwater exposure scenario for the three climate states considered in the TSPA-LA as well as conversion factors for evaluating compliance with the groundwater protection standard. The BDCFs will be used in performance assessment for calculating all-pathway annual doses for a given concentration of radionuclides in groundwater. The conversion factors will be used for calculating gross alpha particle activity in groundwater and the annual dose

  13. Biomedical program at Space Biospheres Ventures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walford, Roy

    1990-01-01

    There are many similarities and some important differences between potential health problems of Biosphere 2 and those of which might be anticipated for a space station or a major outpost on Mars. The demands of time, expense, and equipment would not readily allow medical evacuation from deep space for a serious illness or major trauma, whereas personnel can easily be evacuated from Biosphere 2 if necessary. Treatment facilities can be somewhat less inclusive, since distance would not compel the undertaking of heroic measures or highly complicated surgical procedures on site, and with personnel not fully trained for these procedures. The similarities are given between medical requirements of Biosphere 2 and the complex closed ecological systems of biospheres in space or on Mars. The major problems common to all these would seem to be trauma, infection, and toxicity. It is planned that minor and moderate degrees of trauma, including debridement and suturing of wounds, x ray study of fractures, will be done within Biosphere 2. Bacteriologic and fungal infections, and possibly allergies to pollen or spores are expected to be the commonest medical problem within Biosphere 2.

  14. Bacterial communities associated with subsurface geochemical processes in continental serpentinite springs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brazelton, William J; Morrill, Penny L; Szponar, Natalie; Schrenk, Matthew O

    2013-07-01

    Reactions associated with the geochemical process of serpentinization can generate copious quantities of hydrogen and low-molecular-weight organic carbon compounds, which may provide energy and nutrients to sustain subsurface microbial communities independently of the photosynthetically supported surface biosphere. Previous microbial ecology studies have tested this hypothesis in deep sea hydrothermal vents, such as the Lost City hydrothermal field. This study applied similar methods, including molecular fingerprinting and tag sequencing of the 16S rRNA gene, to ultrabasic continental springs emanating from serpentinizing ultramafic rocks. These molecular surveys were linked with geochemical measurements of the fluids in an interdisciplinary approach designed to distinguish potential subsurface organisms from those derived from surface habitats. The betaproteobacterial genus Hydrogenophaga was identified as a likely inhabitant of transition zones where hydrogen-enriched subsurface fluids mix with oxygenated surface water. The Firmicutes genus Erysipelothrix was most strongly correlated with geochemical factors indicative of subsurface fluids and was identified as the most likely inhabitant of a serpentinization-powered subsurface biosphere. Both of these taxa have been identified in multiple hydrogen-enriched subsurface habitats worldwide, and the results of this study contribute to an emerging biogeographic pattern in which Betaproteobacteria occur in near-surface mixing zones and Firmicutes are present in deeper, anoxic subsurface habitats.

  15. Imperfect isolation: factors and filters shaping Madagascar's extant vertebrate fauna.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Samonds, Karen E; Godfrey, Laurie R; Ali, Jason R; Goodman, Steven M; Vences, Miguel; Sutherland, Michael R; Irwin, Mitchell T; Krause, David W

    2013-01-01

    Analyses of phylogenetic topology and estimates of divergence timing have facilitated a reconstruction of Madagascar's colonization events by vertebrate animals, but that information alone does not reveal the major factors shaping the island's biogeographic history. Here, we examine profiles of Malagasy vertebrate clades through time within the context of the island's paleogeographical evolution to determine how particular events influenced the arrival of the island's extant groups. First we compare vertebrate profiles on Madagascar before and after selected events; then we compare tetrapod profiles on Madagascar to contemporary tetrapod compositions globally. We show that changes from the Mesozoic to the Cenozoic in the proportions of Madagascar's tetrapod clades (particularly its increase in the representation of birds and mammals) are tied to changes in their relative proportions elsewhere on the globe. Differences in the representation of vertebrate classes from the Mesozoic to the Cenozoic reflect the effects of extinction (i.e., the non-random susceptibility of the different vertebrate clades to purported catastrophic global events 65 million years ago), and new evolutionary opportunities for a subset of vertebrates with the relatively high potential for transoceanic dispersal potential. In comparison, changes in vertebrate class representation during the Cenozoic are minor. Despite the fact that the island's isolation has resulted in high vertebrate endemism and a unique and taxonomically imbalanced extant vertebrate assemblage (both hailed as testimony to its long isolation), that isolation was never complete. Indeed, Madagascar's extant tetrapod fauna owes more to colonization during the Cenozoic than to earlier arrivals. Madagascar's unusual vertebrate assemblage needs to be understood with reference to the basal character of clades originating prior to the K-T extinction, as well as to the differential transoceanic dispersal advantage of other, more

  16. The Use of Returned Martian Samples to Evaluate the Possibility of Extant Life on Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    iMOST Team; ten Kate, I. L.; Mackelprang, R.; Rettberg, P.; Smith, C. L.; Altieri, F.; Amelin, Y.; Ammannito, E.; Anand, M.; Beaty, D. W.; Benning, L. G.; Bishop, J. L.; Borg, L. E.; Boucher, D.; Brucato, J. R.; Busemann, H.; Campbell, K. A.; Carrier, B. L.; Czaja, A. D.; Debaille, V.; Des Marais, D. J.; Dixon, M.; Ehlmann, B. L.; Farmer, J. D.; Fernandez-Remolar, D. C.; Fogarty, J.; Glavin, D. P.; Goreva, Y. S.; Grady, M. M.; Hallis, L. J.; Harrington, A. D.; Hausrath, E. M.; Herd, C. D. K.; Horgan, B.; Humayun, M.; Kleine, T.; Kleinhenz, J.; Mangold, N.; Mayhew, L. E.; McCoy, J. T.; McCubbin, F. M.; McLennan, S. M.; McSween, H. Y.; Moser, D. E.; Moynier, F.; Mustard, J. F.; Niles, P. B.; Ori, G. G.; Raulin, F.; Rucker, M. A.; Schmitz, N.; Sefton-Nash, E.; Sephton, M. A.; Shaheen, R.; Shuster, D. L.; Siljestrom, S.; Spry, J. A.; Steele, A.; Swindle, T. D.; Tosca, N. J.; Usui, T.; Van Kranendonk, M. J.; Wadhwa, M.; Weiss, B. P.; Werner, S. C.; Westall, F.; Wheeler, R. M.; Zipfel, J.; Zorzano, M. P.

    2018-04-01

    The astrobiological community is highly interested in interrogating returned martian samples for evidence of extant life. A single observation with one method will not constitute evidence of extant life — it will require a suite of investigations.

  17. Nominal Performance Biosphere Dose Conversion Factor Analysis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    M.A. Wasiolek

    2005-04-28

    This analysis report is one of the technical reports containing documentation of the Environmental Radiation Model for Yucca Mountain, Nevada (ERMYN), a biosphere model supporting the Total System Performance Assessment (TSPA) for the license application (LA) for the Yucca Mountain repository. This analysis report describes the development of biosphere dose conversion factors (BDCFs) for the groundwater exposure scenario, and the development of conversion factors for assessing compliance with the groundwater protection standards. A graphical representation of the documentation hierarchy for the ERMYN is presented in Figure 1-1. This figure shows the interrelationships among the products (i.e., analysis and model reports) developed for biosphere modeling and provides an understanding of how this analysis report contributes to biosphere modeling. This report is one of two reports that develop BDCFs, which are input parameters for the TSPA-LA model. The ''Biosphere Model Report'' (BSC 2004 [DIRS 169460]) describes in detail the ERMYN conceptual model and mathematical model. The input parameter reports, shown to the right of the ''Biosphere Model Report'' in Figure 1-1, contain detailed description of the model input parameters, their development, and the relationship between the parameters and specific features events and processes (FEPs). This report describes biosphere model calculations and their output, the BDCFs, for the groundwater exposure scenario. This analysis receives direct input from the outputs of the ''Biosphere Model Report'' (BSC 2004 [DIRS 169460]) and the five analyses that develop parameter values for the biosphere model (BSC 2005 [DIRS 172827]; BSC 2004 [DIRS 169672]; BSC 2004 [DIRS 169673]; BSC 2004 [DIRS 169458]; BSC 2004 [DIRS 169459]). The results of this report are further analyzed in the ''Biosphere Dose Conversion Factor Importance and Sensitivity Analysis

  18. Nominal Performance Biosphere Dose Conversion Factor Analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    M.A. Wasiolek

    2005-01-01

    This analysis report is one of the technical reports containing documentation of the Environmental Radiation Model for Yucca Mountain, Nevada (ERMYN), a biosphere model supporting the Total System Performance Assessment (TSPA) for the license application (LA) for the Yucca Mountain repository. This analysis report describes the development of biosphere dose conversion factors (BDCFs) for the groundwater exposure scenario, and the development of conversion factors for assessing compliance with the groundwater protection standards. A graphical representation of the documentation hierarchy for the ERMYN is presented in Figure 1-1. This figure shows the interrelationships among the products (i.e., analysis and model reports) developed for biosphere modeling and provides an understanding of how this analysis report contributes to biosphere modeling. This report is one of two reports that develop BDCFs, which are input parameters for the TSPA-LA model. The ''Biosphere Model Report'' (BSC 2004 [DIRS 169460]) describes in detail the ERMYN conceptual model and mathematical model. The input parameter reports, shown to the right of the ''Biosphere Model Report'' in Figure 1-1, contain detailed description of the model input parameters, their development, and the relationship between the parameters and specific features events and processes (FEPs). This report describes biosphere model calculations and their output, the BDCFs, for the groundwater exposure scenario. This analysis receives direct input from the outputs of the ''Biosphere Model Report'' (BSC 2004 [DIRS 169460]) and the five analyses that develop parameter values for the biosphere model (BSC 2005 [DIRS 172827]; BSC 2004 [DIRS 169672]; BSC 2004 [DIRS 169673]; BSC 2004 [DIRS 169458]; BSC 2004 [DIRS 169459]). The results of this report are further analyzed in the ''Biosphere Dose Conversion Factor Importance and Sensitivity Analysis'' (Figure 1-1). The objectives of this analysis are to develop BDCFs for the

  19. Root growth during molar eruption in extant great apes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kelley, Jay; Dean, Christopher; Ross, Sasha

    2009-01-01

    While there is gradually accumulating knowledge about molar crown formation and the timing of molar eruption in extant great apes, very little is known about root formation during the eruption process. We measured mandibular first and second molar root lengths in extant great ape osteological specimens that died while either the first or second molars were in the process of erupting. For most specimens, teeth were removed so that root lengths could be measured directly. When this was not possible, roots were measured radiographically. We were particularly interested in the variation in the lengths of first molar roots near the point of gingival emergence, so specimens were divided into early, middle and late phases of eruption based on the number of cusps that showed protein staining, with one or two cusps stained equated with immediate post-gingival emergence. For first molars at this stage, Gorilla has the longest roots, followed by Pongo and Pan. Variation in first molar mesial root lengths at this stage in Gorilla and Pan, which comprise the largest samples, is relatively low and represents no more than a few months of growth in both taxa. Knowledge of root length at first molar emergence permits an assessment of the contribution of root growth toward differences between great apes and humans in the age at first molar emergence. Root growth makes up a greater percentage of the time between birth and first molar emergence in humans than it does in any of the great apes. Copyright (c) 2009 S. Karger AG, Basel.

  20. Nominal Performance Biosphere Dose Conversion Factor Analysis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    M.A. Wasiolek

    2003-07-25

    This analysis report is one of the technical reports containing documentation of the Environmental Radiation Model for Yucca Mountain, Nevada (ERMYN), a biosphere model supporting the Total System Performance Assessment (TSPA) for the license application (LA) for the Yucca Mountain repository. This analysis report describes the development of biosphere dose conversion factors (BDCFs) for the groundwater exposure scenario, and the development of conversion factors for assessing compliance with the groundwater protection standard. A graphical representation of the documentation hierarchy for the ERMYN is presented in Figure 1-1. This figure shows the interrelationships among the products (i.e., analysis and model reports) developed for biosphere modeling and provides an understanding of how this analysis report contributes to biosphere modeling. This report is one of two reports that develop biosphere BDCFs, which are input parameters for the TSPA model. The ''Biosphere Model Report'' (BSC 2003 [DIRS 164186]) describes in detail the ERMYN conceptual model and mathematical model. The input parameter reports (BSC 2003 [DIRS 160964]; BSC 2003 [DIRS 160965]; BSC 2003 [DIRS 160976]; BSC 2003 [DIRS 161239]; BSC 2003 [DIRS 161241]) contain detailed description of the model input parameters. This report describes biosphere model calculations and their output, the BDCFs, for the groundwater exposure scenario. The objectives of this analysis are to develop BDCFs and conversion factors for the TSPA. The BDCFs will be used in performance assessment for calculating annual doses for a given concentration of radionuclides in groundwater. The conversion factors will be used for calculating gross alpha particle activity in groundwater and the annual dose from beta- and photon-emitting radionuclides.

  1. Biosphere models for deep waste disposal

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Olyslaegers, G.

    2005-01-01

    The management of the radioactive waste requires the implementation of disposal systems that ensure an adequate degree of isolation of the radioactivity from man and the environment. Because there are still a lot of uncertainties and a lack of consensus with respect to the importance of the exposure pathways of man, a project BioMoSA (Biosphere Models for Safety Assessment) was elaborated in the Fifth Framework Programme of EURATOM). It aimed at improving the scientific basis for the application of biosphere models in the framework of long-term safety studies for radioactive waste disposal facilities. The section radiological evaluations of SCK-CEN took part in the BioMoSA project. n the BioMoSA project, the reference biosphere methodology developed in the IAEA programme BIOMASS (Biosphere Modelling and Assessment methods) is implemented). We used this methodology in order to increase the transparency of biosphere modelling; t evaluate the importance of the different radionuclides and pathways, and to enhance public confidence in the assessment of potential radiological dose to population groups far into the future. Five European locations, covering a wide range of environmental and agricultural conditions are described and characterised. Each participant developed a specific biosphere model for their site. In order to achieve a consistency in this model derivation, a staged approach has been followed. Successively the biosphere is described and conceptual, mathematical and numerical models are constructed. For each of the locations site-specific parameters are selected. In the project, we had the specific task to make a comparison between the model results generated by the different participants. Results from these studies are presented and discussed

  2. Exchange Processes at Geosphere-Biosphere Interface

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Worman, A.; Sjogren, B.; Dverstorp, B.; Xu, S.

    2004-01-01

    The radioecological models included in performance assessments to date by the Swedish nuclear industry for existing and planned nuclear waste repositories do not explicitly represent the transport of radionuclides from bedrock into the near-surface geological environment. It has been argued that bypassing the transition zone from the bedrock to the quarternary deposits and the biosphere (the geosphere-biosphere interface, GBI) leads to conservative estimates of estimated doses and risk. This study demonstrates that this may not always be true. The study is based on an integrated model representation of a release of radionuclides from a hypothetical repository, transport through the crystalline bedrock and the near-surface deposits to the biosphere. A three-dimensional flow model is developed, which has a fairly accurate description of both surface and groundwater hydrology and is coupled to radioecological models. The development has great significance for estimation of flow field at the repository level as well as for estimation of transport pathways and residence time distributions for radionuclides. The modelling approach is based on the characterisation of radionuclide residence times in the bedrock and the quaternary deposits, as well as the distribution of radionuclides in ecosystems. Simulation examples are presented to illustrate the relative importance of transport processes in the quaternary sediments and the hydraulic interaction between the bedrock, quaternary deposits and various ecosystems. The modelling results show that, in many cases, taking into account the biosphere-geosphere interface leads to a delay of radionuclide arrival to the biosphere. For other conditions, the more precise prediction of radionuclide ex-filtration locations in the biosphere can result in higher environmental concentrations compared with estimates based on diluting radionuclide in a large area. An improved representation of these processes will enhance our understanding of

  3. Biosphere science news roundup. The Center for Biospheric Education and Research

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cotten, J H

    1994-01-01

    The Center for Biospheric Education and Research (CBER) is an exciting and truly unique addition to The Huntsville-Madison County Botanical Garden. The mission of CBER is to increase the knowledge and understanding of closed ecological life support systems, including both natural and man-made biospheres. Its primary emphasis will be on the Earth biosphere with particular attention to the role of plants in maintaining a balanced environment. Secondary emphasis will be on the space station and lunar habitation biospheres, both of which employ plants for environmental control, food, and aesthetics. CBER will serve as a catalyst providing both a forum and a facility for research, education, and display of methodologies and technologies relevant to the creation and maintenance of such biospheric systems.

  4. Causes and timing of future biosphere extinctions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. Franck

    2006-01-01

    Full Text Available We present a minimal model for the global carbon cycle of the Earth containing the reservoirs mantle, ocean floor, continental crust, biosphere, and the kerogen, as well as the combined ocean and atmosphere reservoir. The model is specified by introducing three different types of biosphere: procaryotes, eucaryotes, and complex multicellular life. During the entire existence of the biosphere procaryotes are always present. 2 Gyr ago eucaryotic life first appears. The emergence of complex multicellular life is connected with an explosive increase in biomass and a strong decrease in Cambrian global surface temperature at about 0.54 Gyr ago. In the long-term future the three types of biosphere will die out in reverse sequence of their appearance. We show that there is no evidence for an implosion-like extinction in contrast to the Cambrian explosion. In dependence of their temperature tolerance complex multicellular life and eucaryotes become extinct in about 0.8–1.2 Gyr and 1.3–1.5 Gyr, respectively. The ultimate life span of the biosphere is defined by the extinction of procaryotes in about 1.6 Gyr.

  5. Electrical Subsurface Grounding Analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    J.M. Calle

    2000-01-01

    The purpose and objective of this analysis is to determine the present grounding requirements of the Exploratory Studies Facility (ESF) subsurface electrical system and to verify that the actual grounding system and devices satisfy the requirements

  6. Deep subsurface microbial processes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lovley, D.R.; Chapelle, F.H.

    1995-01-01

    Information on the microbiology of the deep subsurface is necessary in order to understand the factors controlling the rate and extent of the microbially catalyzed redox reactions that influence the geophysical properties of these environments. Furthermore, there is an increasing threat that deep aquifers, an important drinking water resource, may be contaminated by man's activities, and there is a need to predict the extent to which microbial activity may remediate such contamination. Metabolically active microorganisms can be recovered from a diversity of deep subsurface environments. The available evidence suggests that these microorganisms are responsible for catalyzing the oxidation of organic matter coupled to a variety of electron acceptors just as microorganisms do in surface sediments, but at much slower rates. The technical difficulties in aseptically sampling deep subsurface sediments and the fact that microbial processes in laboratory incubations of deep subsurface material often do not mimic in situ processes frequently necessitate that microbial activity in the deep subsurface be inferred through nonmicrobiological analyses of ground water. These approaches include measurements of dissolved H2, which can predict the predominant microbially catalyzed redox reactions in aquifers, as well as geochemical and groundwater flow modeling, which can be used to estimate the rates of microbial processes. Microorganisms recovered from the deep subsurface have the potential to affect the fate of toxic organics and inorganic contaminants in groundwater. Microbial activity also greatly influences 1 the chemistry of many pristine groundwaters and contributes to such phenomena as porosity development in carbonate aquifers, accumulation of undesirably high concentrations of dissolved iron, and production of methane and hydrogen sulfide. Although the last decade has seen a dramatic increase in interest in deep subsurface microbiology, in comparison with the study of

  7. Work in support of biosphere assessments for solid radioactive waste disposal. 2. biosphere FEP list and biosphere modelling

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Egan, M J; Maul, P R; Watkins, B M; Venter, A [QuantiSci Ltd., Henley-on-Thames (United Kingdom)

    2001-10-01

    In order to assist SSI in its reappraisal of the SFR safety case, QuantiSci has been appointed to develop a systematic framework within which to conduct the review of SKB's post-closure performance assessment (PA). The biosphere FEP list presented here was developed for use as reference material in conducting the review. SSI wishes to develop an independent PA capability for a time-dependent biosphere in preparation for the examination of the revised SFR safety case. This report documents the model development that has been undertaken by QuantiSci using the Amber computer code.

  8. Work in support of biosphere assessments for solid radioactive waste disposal. 2. biosphere FEP list and biosphere modelling

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Egan, M.J.; Maul, P.R.; Watkins, B.M.; Venter, A. [QuantiSci Ltd., Henley-on-Thames (United Kingdom)

    2001-10-01

    In order to assist SSI in its reappraisal of the SFR safety case, QuantiSci has been appointed to develop a systematic framework within which to conduct the review of SKB's post-closure performance assessment (PA). The biosphere FEP list presented here was developed for use as reference material in conducting the review. SSI wishes to develop an independent PA capability for a time-dependent biosphere in preparation for the examination of the revised SFR safety case. This report documents the model development that has been undertaken by QuantiSci using the Amber computer code.

  9. Work in support of biosphere assessments for solid radioactive waste disposal. 2. biosphere FEP list and biosphere modelling

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Egan, M.J.; Maul, P.R.; Watkins, B.M.; Venter, A.

    2001-10-01

    In order to assist SSI in its reappraisal of the SFR safety case, QuantiSci has been appointed to develop a systematic framework within which to conduct the review of SKB's post-closure performance assessment (PA). The biosphere FEP list presented here was developed for use as reference material in conducting the review. SSI wishes to develop an independent PA capability for a time-dependent biosphere in preparation for the examination of the revised SFR safety case. This report documents the model development that has been undertaken by QuantiSci using the Amber computer code

  10. Site Recommendation Subsurface Layout

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    C.L. Linden

    2000-01-01

    The purpose of this analysis is to develop a Subsurface Facility layout that is capable of accommodating the statutory capacity of 70,000 metric tons of uranium (MTU), as well as an option to expand the inventory capacity, if authorized, to 97,000 MTU. The layout configuration also requires a degree of flexibility to accommodate potential changes in site conditions or program requirements. The objective of this analysis is to provide a conceptual design of the Subsurface Facility sufficient to support the development of the Subsurface Facility System Description Document (CRWMS M andO 2000e) and the ''Emplacement Drift System Description Document'' (CRWMS M andO 2000i). As well, this analysis provides input to the Site Recommendation Consideration Report. The scope of this analysis includes: (1) Evaluation of the existing facilities and their integration into the Subsurface Facility design. (2) Identification and incorporation of factors influencing Subsurface Facility design, such as geological constraints, thermal loading, constructibility, subsurface ventilation, drainage control, radiological considerations, and the Test and Evaluation Facilities. (3) Development of a layout showing an available area in the primary area sufficient to support both the waste inventories and individual layouts showing the emplacement area required for 70,000 MTU and, if authorized, 97,000 MTU

  11. Components, processes and interactions in the biosphere

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2010-12-01

    This report describes the processes and interactions between components in the biosphere that may be important in a safety assessment for radioactive waste disposal. The processes are general, i.e. they can be used in all safety analyses for underground repositories and are not specific to a particular method or location. Processes related to the geosphere and specific repository types (e.g. the KBS-3 method) can be found in /Skagius et al. 1995, SKB 2001, 2006, 2010a/. This report describes a biosphere interaction matrix that has been used in support of SR-Site and that can be used in future safety assessments. The work of defining and characterising processes in the biosphere is ongoing and many persons from different disciplines have been involved in the identification and characterisation of processes

  12. Components, processes and interactions in the biosphere

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    2010-12-15

    This report describes the processes and interactions between components in the biosphere that may be important in a safety assessment for radioactive waste disposal. The processes are general, i.e. they can be used in all safety analyses for underground repositories and are not specific to a particular method or location. Processes related to the geosphere and specific repository types (e.g. the KBS-3 method) can be found in /Skagius et al. 1995, SKB 2001, 2006, 2010a/. This report describes a biosphere interaction matrix that has been used in support of SR-Site and that can be used in future safety assessments. The work of defining and characterising processes in the biosphere is ongoing and many persons from different disciplines have been involved in the identification and characterisation of processes

  13. Feeding mechanics in spinosaurid theropods and extant crocodilians.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrew R Cuff

    Full Text Available A number of extant and extinct archosaurs evolved an elongate, narrow rostrum. This longirostrine condition has been associated with a diet comprising a higher proportion of fish and smaller prey items compared to taxa with broader, more robust snouts. The evolution of longirostrine morphology and a bulbous anterior rosette of premaxillary teeth also occurs in the spinosaurid theropod dinosaurs, leading to suggestions that at least some members of this clade also had a diet comprising a notable proportion of fish or other small vertebrates. Here we compare the rostral biomechanics of the spinosaurs Baryonyx walkeri and Spinosaurus c.f. S. aegyptiacus to three extant crocodilians: two longistrine taxa, the African slender-snouted crocodile Mecistops cataphractus and the Indian gharial Gavialis gangeticus; and the American alligator Alligator mississippiensis. Using computed tomography (CT data, the second moments of area and moments of inertia at successive transverse slices along the rostrum were calculated for each of the species. Size-independent results tested the biomechanical benefits of material distribution within the rostra. The two spinosaur rostra were both digitally reconstructed from CT data and compared against all three crocodilians. Results show that African slender-snouted crocodile skulls are more resistant to bending than an equivalent sized gharial. The alligator has the highest resistances to bending and torsion of the crocodiles for its size and greater than that of the spinosaurs. The spinosaur rostra possess similar resistance to bending and torsion despite their different morphologies. When size is accounted for, B. walkeri performs mechanically differently from the gharial, contradicting previous studies whereas Spinosaurus does not. Biomechanical data support known feeding ecology for both African slender-snouted crocodile and alligator, and suggest that the spinosaurs were not obligate piscivores with diet being

  14. Subsurface Contamination Control

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Y. Yuan

    2001-12-12

    There are two objectives of this report, ''Subsurface Contamination Control''. The first is to provide a technical basis for recommending limiting radioactive contamination levels (LRCL) on the external surfaces of waste packages (WP) for acceptance into the subsurface repository. The second is to provide an evaluation of the magnitude of potential releases from a defective WP and the detectability of the released contents. The technical basis for deriving LRCL has been established in ''Retrieval Equipment and Strategy for Wp on Pallet'' (CRWMS M and O 2000g, 6.3.1). This report updates the derivation by incorporating the latest design information of the subsurface repository for site recommendation. The derived LRCL on the external surface of WPs, therefore, supercede that described in CRWMS M and O 2000g. The derived LRCL represent the average concentrations of contamination on the external surfaces of each WP that must not be exceeded before the WP is to be transported to the subsurface facility for emplacement. The evaluation of potential releases is necessary to control the potential contamination of the subsurface repository and to detect prematurely failed WPs. The detection of failed WPs is required in order to provide reasonable assurance that the integrity of each WP is intact prior to MGR closure. An emplaced WP may become breached due to manufacturing defects or improper weld combined with failure to detect the defect, by corrosion, or by mechanical penetration due to accidents or rockfall conditions. The breached WP may release its gaseous and volatile radionuclide content to the subsurface environment and result in contaminating the subsurface facility. The scope of this analysis is limited to radioactive contaminants resulting from breached WPs during the preclosure period of the subsurface repository. This report: (1) documents a method for deriving LRCL on the external surfaces of WP for acceptance into the

  15. Biosphere II: engineering of manned, closed ecological systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dempster, W F

    1991-01-01

    Space Biospheres and Ventures, a private, for-profit firm, has undertaken a major research and development project in the study of biospheres, with the objective of creating and producing biospheres. Biosphere II-scheduled for completion in March 1991-will be essentially isolated from the existing biosphere by a closed structure, composed of components derived from the existing biosphere. Like the biosphere of the Earth, Biosphere II will be essentially closed to exchanges of material or living organisms with the surrounding environment and open to energy and information exchanges. Also, like the biosphere of the Earth, Biosphere II will contain five kingdoms of life, a variety of ecosystems, plus humankind, culture, and technics. The system is designed to be complex, stable and evolving throughout its intended 100-year lifespan, rather than static. Biosphere II will cover approximately 1.3 hectare and contain 200,000 m3 in volume, with seven major biomes: tropical rainforest, tropical savannah, marsh, marine, desert, intensive agriculture, and human habitat. An interdisciplinary team of leading scientific, ecological, management, architectural, and engineering consultants have been contracted by Space Biospheres Ventures for the project. Potential applications for biospheric systems include scientific and ecological management research, refuges for endangered species, and life habitats for manned stations on spacecraft or other planets.

  16. User's guide to the biosphere code ECOS

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kane, P.; Thorne, M.C.

    1984-10-01

    This report constitutes the user's guide to the biosphere model ECOS and provides a detailed description of the processes modelled and mathematical formulations used. The FORTRAN code ECOS is an equilibrium-type compartmental biosphere code. ECOS was designed with the objective of producing a general but comprehensive code for use in the assessment of the radiological impact of unspecified geological repositories for radioactive waste. ECOS transforms the rate of release of activity from the geosphere to the rate of accumulation of weighted committed effective dose equivalent (dose). Both maximum individual dose (critical group dose) and collective dose rates may be computed. (author)

  17. Past and Future of the Anthropogenic Biosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ellis, E. C.

    2010-12-01

    Human populations and their use of land have now transformed most of the terrestrial biosphere into anthropogenic biomes (anthromes). As anthromes have emerged as the dominant global forms of ecological pattern and process, human interactions with terrestrial ecosystems have become a key earth system process, determining the structure and functioning of the biosphere. This presentation explores Ester Boserup’s land use intensification theories as models for understanding the emergence and dynamics of anthromes and their ecological processes, including their biogeochemistry and community structure, from the mostly wild biosphere of the Holocene to the primarily anthropogenic biosphere of the present and future. Existing global models and data for human population growth and land use over the Holocene differ in their portrayal of the global transition to a mostly anthropogenic biosphere. Yet there is little doubt that human populations have continued to grow over the long term and that anthromes have been increasingly important global ecological systems for millennia. This is conclusive evidence that human interactions with ecosystems can be sustained over the long-term, albeit under conditions that may no longer be realizable by either Earth or human systems. The classic Malthusian paradigm, in which human population growth outstrips natural resources leading to population collapse is unsupported by historical observations at global scale. Boserupian intensification is the better model, providing a robust theoretical foundation in which socio-ecological systems evolve as human populations increase, towards increasingly efficient use of limiting natural resources and enhanced production of anthropogenic ecological services such as food. This is not a story of technical advance, but rather of the forced adoption of ever more energy-intensive technical solutions in support of ever increasing population demands. And it does explain historical changes in the biosphere

  18. Nominal Performance Biosphere Dose Conversion Factor Analysis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    M. Wasiolek

    2004-09-08

    This analysis report is one of the technical reports containing documentation of the Environmental Radiation Model for Yucca Mountain, Nevada (ERMYN), a biosphere model supporting the Total System Performance Assessment (TSPA) for the license application (LA) for the Yucca Mountain repository. This analysis report describes the development of biosphere dose conversion factors (BDCFs) for the groundwater exposure scenario, and the development of conversion factors for assessing compliance with the groundwater protection standard. A graphical representation of the documentation hierarchy for the ERMYN is presented in Figure 1-1. This figure shows the interrelationships among the products (i.e., analysis and model reports) developed for biosphere modeling and provides an understanding of how this analysis report contributes to biosphere modeling. This report is one of two reports that develop biosphere BDCFs, which are input parameters for the TSPA-LA model. The ''Biosphere Model Report'' (BSC 2004 [DIRS 169460]) describes in detail the ERMYN conceptual model and mathematical model. The input parameter reports, shown to the right of the ''Biosphere Model Report'' in Figure 1-1, contain detailed description of the model input parameters, their development, and the relationship between the parameters and specific features events and processes (FEPs). This report describes biosphere model calculations and their output, the BDCFs, for the groundwater exposure scenario. The objectives of this analysis are to develop BDCFs for the groundwater exposure scenario for the three climate states considered in the TSPA-LA as well as conversion factors for evaluating compliance with the groundwater protection standard. The BDCFs will be used in performance assessment for calculating all-pathway annual doses for a given concentration of radionuclides in groundwater. The conversion factors will be used for calculating gross alpha particle

  19. Ecology and exploration of the rare biosphere.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lynch, Michael D J; Neufeld, Josh D

    2015-04-01

    The profound influence of microorganisms on human life and global biogeochemical cycles underlines the value of studying the biogeography of microorganisms, exploring microbial genomes and expanding our understanding of most microbial species on Earth: that is, those present at low relative abundance. The detection and subsequent analysis of low-abundance microbial populations—the 'rare biosphere'—have demonstrated the persistence, population dynamics, dispersion and predation of these microbial species. We discuss the ecology of rare microbial populations, and highlight molecular and computational methods for targeting taxonomic 'blind spots' within the rare biosphere of complex microbial communities.

  20. Ciliates and the rare biosphere: a review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dunthorn, Micah; Stoeck, Thorsten; Clamp, John; Warren, Alan; Mahé, Frédéric

    2014-01-01

    Here we provide a brief review of the rare biosphere from the perspective of ciliates and other microbial eukaryotes. We trace research on rarity from its lack of much in-depth focus in morphological and Sanger sequencing projects, to its central importance in analyses using high throughput sequencing strategies. The problem that the rare biosphere is potentially comprised of mostly errors is then discussed in the light of asking community-comparative, novel-diversity, and ecosystem-functioning questions. © 2014 The Author(s) Journal of Eukaryotic Microbiology © 2014 International Society of Protistologists.

  1. Atmospheric energy for subsurface life on Mars?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weiss, B. P.; Yung, Y. L.; Nealson, K. H.

    2000-01-01

    The location and density of biologically useful energy sources on Mars will limit the biomass, spatial distribution, and organism size of any biota. Subsurface Martian organisms could be supplied with a large energy flux from the oxidation of photochemically produced atmospheric H(2) and CO diffusing into the regolith. However, surface abundance measurements of these gases demonstrate that no more than a few percent of this available flux is actually being consumed, suggesting that biological activity driven by atmospheric H(2) and CO is limited in the top few hundred meters of the subsurface. This is significant because the available but unused energy is extremely large: for organisms at 30-m depth, it is 2,000 times previous estimates of hydrothermal and chemical weathering energy and far exceeds the energy derivable from other atmospheric gases. This also implies that the apparent scarcity of life on Mars is not attributable to lack of energy. Instead, the availability of liquid water may be a more important factor limiting biological activity because the photochemical energy flux can only penetrate to 100- to 1,000-m depth, where most H(2)O is probably frozen. Because both atmospheric and Viking lander soil data provide little evidence for biological activity, the detection of short-lived trace gases will probably be a better indicator of any extant Martian life.

  2. The legacy of Biosphere 2 for the study of biospherics and closed ecological systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allen, J P; Nelson, M; Alling, A

    2003-01-01

    The unprecedented challenges of creating Biosphere 2, the world's first laboratory for biospherics, the study of global ecology and long-term closed ecological system dynamics, led to breakthrough developments in many fields, and a deeper understanding of the opportunities and difficulties of material closure. This paper will review accomplishments and challenges, citing some of the key research findings and publications that have resulted from the experiments in Biosphere 2. Engineering accomplishments included development of a technique for variable volume to deal with pressure differences between the facility and outside environment, developing methods of atmospheric leak detection and sealing, while achieving new standards of closure, with an annual atmospheric leakrate of less than 10%, or less than 300 ppm per day. This degree of closure permitted detailed tracking of carbon dioxide, oxygen, and trace gases such as nitrous oxide and ethylene over the seasonal variability of two years. Full closure also necessitated developing new approaches and technologies for complete air, water, and wastewater recycle and reuse within the facility. The development of a soil-based highly productive agricultural system was a first in closed ecological systems, and much was learned about managing a wide variety of crops using non-chemical means of pest and disease control. Closed ecological systems have different temporal biogeochemical cycling and ranges of atmospheric components because of their smaller reservoirs of air, water and soil, and higher concentration of biomass, and Biosphere 2 provided detailed examination and modeling of these accelerated cycles over a period of closure which measured in years. Medical research inside Biosphere 2 included the effects on humans of lowered oxygen: the discovery that human productivity can be maintained with good health with lowered atmospheric oxygen levels could lead to major economies on the design of space stations and

  3. The legacy of biosphere 2 for the study of biospherics and closed ecological systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allen, J. P.; Nelson, M.; Alling, A.

    The unprecedented challenges of creating Biosphere 2, the world's first laboratory for biospherics, the study of global ecology and long-term closed ecological system dynamics, led to breakthrough developments in many fields, and a deeper understanding of the opportunities and difficulties of material closure. This paper will review accomplishments and challenges, citing some of the key research findings and publications that have resulted from the experiments in Biosphere 2. Engineering accomplishments included development of a technique for variable volume to deal with pressure differences between the facility and outside environment, developing methods of atmospheric leak detection and sealing, while achieving new standards of closure, with an annual atmospheric leakrate of less than 10%, or less than 300 ppm per day. This degree of closure permitted detailed tracking of carbon dioxide, oxygen, and trice gases such as nitrous oxide and ethylene over the seasonal variability of two years. Full closure also necessitated developing new approaches and technologies for complete air, water, and wastewater recycle and reuse within the facility. The development of a soil-based highly productive agricultural system was a first in closed ecological systems, and much was learned about managing a wide variety of crops using non-chemical means of pest and disease control. Closed ecological systems have different temporal biogeochemical cycling and ranges of atmospheric components because of their smaller reservoirs of air, water and soil, and higher concentration of biomass, and Biosphere 2 provided detailed examination and modeling of these accelerated cycles over a period of closure which measured in years. Medical research inside Biosphere 2 included the effects on humans of lowered oxygen: the discovery that human productivity can be maintained with good health with lowered atmospheric oxygen levels could lead to major economies on the design of space stations and

  4. Integrated Biosphere Simulator Model (IBIS), Version 2.5

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — ABSTRACT: The Integrated Biosphere Simulator (or IBIS) is designed to be a comprehensive model of the terrestrial biosphere. Tthe model represents a wide range of...

  5. Integrated Biosphere Simulator Model (IBIS), Version 2.5

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The Integrated Biosphere Simulator (or IBIS) is designed to be a comprehensive model of the terrestrial biosphere. Tthe model represents a wide range of processes,...

  6. Dose assessment considering evolution of the biosphere

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Karlsson, Sara; Bergstroem, Ulla

    2002-01-01

    Swedish Nuclear Fuel and Waste Management AB (SKB) is presently updating the safety assessment for SFR (Final repository for radioactive operational waste) in Sweden. The bio-spheric part of the analysis is performed by Studsvik Eco and Safety AB. According to the regulations the safety of the repository has to be accounted for different possible courses of the development of the biosphere. A number of studies have been carried out during the past years to investigate and document the biosphere in the area surrounding the repository. Modelling of shore-level displacement by land uplift, coastal water exchange and sedimentation have provided data for prediction of the evolution of the area. The prediction is done without considering a future change in climatic conditions. The results from this study show that accumulation of radionuclides in sediments is an important process to simulate when performing dose assessments covering biosphere evolution. The dose calculated for the first years of the period with agricultural use of the contaminated sediments may be severely underestimated in a scenario with large accumulation in coastal and lake stages. (LN)

  7. The World Campaign for the Biosphere.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barman, Charles R.

    1984-01-01

    Lists and discusses goals of The World Campaign for the Biosphere and strategies designed to achieve these goals. Also lists eight suggestions for science teachers to help incorporate the goals into school curricula and programs. These include organizing assemblies which present information about environmental problems and presenting environmental…

  8. Alternative biosphere modeling for safety assessment of HLW disposal taking account of geosphere-biosphere interface of marine environment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kato, Tomoko; Ishiguro, Katsuhiko; Naito, Morimasa; Ikeda, Takao; Little, Richard

    2001-03-01

    In the safety assessment of a high-level radioactive waste (HLW) disposal system, it is required to estimate radiological impacts on future human beings arising from potential radionuclide releases from a deep repository into the surface environment. In order to estimated the impacts, a biosphere model is developed by reasonably assuming radionuclide migration processes in the surface environment and relevant human lifestyles. It is important to modify the present biosphere models or to develop alternative biosphere models applying the biosphere models according to quality and quantify of the information acquired through the siting process for constructing the repository. In this study, alternative biosphere models were developed taking geosphere-biosphere interface of marine environment into account. Moreover, the flux to dose conversion factors calculated by these alternative biosphere models was compared with those by the present basic biosphere models. (author)

  9. Plant resources in the biosphere reserve peninsula de Guanahacabibes, Cuba

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sonia Rosete Blandariz

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available In the Biosphere Reserve Peninsula de Guanahacabibes, plant species are mainly used as food, medicine, honeybee feeders and timber. They are collected by folk people in the nearby forests but these collections can be a severe threat to many of the extant plant resources. An ethnobotanical study and a tree inventory were carried out in the 80 plots of the Unidad Silvícola El Valle in order to define a basis for the management and sustainable development of the useful species of the localities La Bajada, El Valle y Vallecito in the BRPG. Informal and structured interviews were made to 200 collectors as well as participant observations and hiking tours from October 1987 to September 2007. Results show that most useful plants are found in the lowland tropical forest, the seashore scrub thicket and the sandy and rocky coasts. Areas with least diversity are found in the northern zone where mangrove forests are dominant with two species: Avicennia germinans and Rhizophora mangle. Plot 15 has the largest amount of species (249. Over 200 species were found in the plots 73 (232, 70 (232, 80 (232, 68 (229, 74 (229 and 78 (229 where the following species are dominant: Gerascanthus gerascanthoides, Oxandra lanceolata and Sideroxylon foetidissimum subsp. foetidissimum.. According to the inventory, Talipariti elatum is abundant and therefore the controlled exploitation of its flowers is recommended for the production of green dye and medicine against colds. The propagation of pioneer species like Chrysobalanus icaco, Chrysophyllum oliviforme and Genipa americana during the first years of forest regeneration, followed by the propagation of foliage trees like Oxandra lanceolata (useful in the perfume industry and Crescentia cujete will help to recuperate and/or restore the original forests.

  10. Diet and morphology of extant and recently extinct northern bears

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mattson, David J.

    1998-01-01

    I examined the relationship of diets to skull morphology of extant northern bears and used this information to speculate on diets of the recently extinct cave (Ursus spelaeus) and short-faced (Arctodus simus) bears. Analyses relied upon published skull measurements and food habits of Asiatic (U. thibetanus) and American (U. americanus) black bears, polar bears (U. maritimus), various subspecies of brown bears (U. arctos), and the giant panda (Ailuropoda melanoleuca). Principal components analysis showed major trends in skull morphology related to size, crushing force, and snout shape. Giant pandas, short-faced bears, cave bears, and polar bears exhibited extreme features along these gradients. Diets of brown bears in colder, often non-forested environments were distinguished by large volumes of roots, foliage, and vertebrates, while diets of the 2 black bear species and brown bears occupying broadleaf forests contained greater volumes of mast and invertebrates and overlapped considerably. Fractions of fibrous foods in feces (foliage and roots) were strongly related to skull morphology (R2=0.97)">(R2=0.97). Based on this relationship, feces of cave and short-faced bears were predicted to consist almost wholly of foliage, roots, or both. I hypothesized that cave bears specialized in root grubbing. In contrast, based upon body proportions and features of the ursid digestive tract, I hypothesized that skull features associated with crushing force facilitated a carnivorous rather than herbivorous diet for short-faced bears.

  11. SUBSURFACE EMPLACEMENT TRANSPORTATION SYSTEM

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wilson, T.; Novotny, R.

    1999-01-01

    The objective of this analysis is to identify issues and criteria that apply to the design of the Subsurface Emplacement Transportation System (SET). The SET consists of the track used by the waste package handling equipment, the conductors and related equipment used to supply electrical power to that equipment, and the instrumentation and controls used to monitor and operate those track and power supply systems. Major considerations of this analysis include: (1) Operational life of the SET; (2) Geometric constraints on the track layout; (3) Operating loads on the track; (4) Environmentally induced loads on the track; (5) Power supply (electrification) requirements; and (6) Instrumentation and control requirements. This analysis will provide the basis for development of the system description document (SDD) for the SET. This analysis also defines the interfaces that need to be considered in the design of the SET. These interfaces include, but are not limited to, the following: (1) Waste handling building; (2) Monitored Geologic Repository (MGR) surface site layout; (3) Waste Emplacement System (WES); (4) Waste Retrieval System (WRS); (5) Ground Control System (GCS); (6) Ex-Container System (XCS); (7) Subsurface Electrical Distribution System (SED); (8) MGR Operations Monitoring and Control System (OMC); (9) Subsurface Facility System (SFS); (10) Subsurface Fire Protection System (SFR); (11) Performance Confirmation Emplacement Drift Monitoring System (PCM); and (12) Backfill Emplacement System (BES)

  12. The Legacy of Biosphere 2 for Biospherics and Closed Ecological System Research

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allen, J.; Alling, A.; Nelson, M.

    The unprecedented challenges of creating Biosphere 2, the world's first laboratory for biospherics, the study of global ecology and long-term closed ecological system dynamics led to breakthrough developments in many fields, and a deeper understanding of the opportunities and difficulties of material closure. This paper will review these accomplishments and challenges, citing some of the key research accomplishments and publications which have resulted from the experiments in Biosphere 2. Engineering accomplishments included development of a technique for variable volume to deal with pressure differences between the facility and outside environment, developing methods of leak detection and sealing, and achieving new standards of closure, with an annual atmospheric leakrate of less than 10%, or less than 300 ppm per day. This degree of closure permitted detailed tracking of carbon dioxide, oxygen, and trace gases such as nitrous oxide and ethylene over the seasonal variability of two years. Full closure also necessitated developing new approaches and technologies for complete air, water, and wastewater recycle and reuse within the facility. The development of a soil-based highly productive agricultural system was a first in closed ecological systems, and much was learned about managing a wide variety of crops using non-chemical means of pest and disease control. Closed ecological systems have different temporal b ogeochemical cycling and ranges ofi atmospheric components because of their smaller reservoirs of air, water and soil, and higher concentration of biomass, and Biosphere 2 provided detailed examination and modeling of these accelerated cycles over a period of closure which measured in years. Medical research inside Biosphere 2 included the effects on humans of lowered oxygen: the discovery that human productivity can be maintained down to 15% oxygen could lead to major economies on the design of space stations and planetary/lunar settlements. The improved

  13. Atribacteria from the Subseafloor Sedimentary Biosphere Disperse to the Hydrosphere through Submarine Mud Volcanoes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoshino, Tatsuhiko; Toki, Tomohiro; Ijiri, Akira; Morono, Yuki; Machiyama, Hideaki; Ashi, Juichiro; Okamura, Kei; Inagaki, Fumio

    2017-01-01

    Submarine mud volcanoes (SMVs) are formed by muddy sediments and breccias extruded to the seafloor from a source in the deep subseafloor and are characterized by the discharge of methane and other hydrocarbon gasses and deep-sourced fluids into the overlying seawater. Although SMVs act as a natural pipeline connecting the Earth's surface and subsurface biospheres, the dispersal of deep-biosphere microorganisms and their ecological roles remain largely unknown. In this study, we investigated the microbial communities in sediment and overlying seawater at two SMVs located on the Ryukyu Trench off Tanegashima Island, southern Japan. The microbial communities in mud volcano sediments were generally distinct from those in the overlying seawaters and in the well-stratified Pacific margin sediments collected at the Peru Margin, the Juan de Fuca Ridge flank off Oregon, and offshore of Shimokita Peninsula, northeastern Japan. Nevertheless, in-depth analysis of different taxonomic groups at the sub-species level revealed that the taxon affiliated with Atribacteria , heterotrophic anaerobic bacteria that typically occur in organic-rich anoxic subseafloor sediments, were commonly found not only in SMV sediments but also in the overlying seawater. We designed a new oligonucleotide probe for detecting Atribacteria using the catalyzed reporter deposition-fluorescence in situ hybridization (CARD-FISH). CARD-FISH, digital PCR and sequencing analysis of 16S rRNA genes consistently showed that Atribacteria are abundant in the methane plumes of the two SMVs (0.58 and 1.5 × 10 4 cells/mL, respectively) but not in surrounding waters, suggesting that microbial cells in subseafloor sediments are dispersed as "deep-biosphere seeds" into the ocean. These findings may have important implications for the microbial transmigration between the deep subseafloor biosphere and the hydrosphere.

  14. "Biospheric medicine" as viewed from the two-year first closure of Biosphere 2.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walford, R L; Bechtel, R; MacCallum, T; Paglia, D E; Weber, L J

    1996-07-01

    Biosphere 2 is a 3.15-acre, 7-million ft. enclosed ecological space near Tucson, AZ. It contains five wilderness and two domestic biomes (rain forest, savanna, desert, ocean, marsh; agricultural station, living quarters), an original introduction of 3,800 species (approximately 20% extinctions have occurred), and a large basement "technosphere." Sealed inside Biosphere 2 in September 1991, four women and four men, including two of the authors, maintained themselves and the various systems for 2 yr, the longest-sustained "isolated confined environment" period on record. MMPI psychological profile scores for Biosphere 2 crewmembers correlated closely with those reported for astronauts and shuttle applicants. Major medical problems encountered during the 2 yr included adaptation to a low-calorie (1800-2200 kcal.d-1 per person) but otherwise nutritionally adequate diet, with substantial weight loss (18% for men, 10% for women), and a declining oxygen atmosphere (down to 14.2%). Life in a miniworld such as Biosphere 2 may differ substantially from life in a space station or temporary planetary base. These differences include multiple, shifting, sometimes opposing post-launch objectives; complete self-sustenance with recycling of virtually all materials within a highly complex biologic system; retooling of some areas of practical medicine; an attention to "culture" as a social dynamic and how that may influence crew and leadership selection in a societal rather than a quasi-military community. Assuming that long-term planetary colonies must be largely self-sustaining (due to costs of supply over great distances), they must of necessity approach the condition of biospheres. Subject to chaos dynamic (nonlinear dynamic) perturbations, the behavior of complex biospheres will be inherently non-predictable--as opposed to the linear dynamic situation of most space missions--and will require of the inhabitants, including the medical team, a wide range of coping abilities. Under

  15. Deep-biosphere consortium of fungi and prokaryotes in Eocene subseafloor basalts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bengtson, S; Ivarsson, M; Astolfo, A; Belivanova, V; Broman, C; Marone, F; Stampanoni, M

    2014-11-01

    The deep biosphere of the subseafloor crust is believed to contain a significant part of Earth's biomass, but because of the difficulties of directly observing the living organisms, its composition and ecology are poorly known. We report here a consortium of fossilized prokaryotic and eukaryotic micro-organisms, occupying cavities in deep-drilled vesicular basalt from the Emperor Seamounts, Pacific Ocean, 67.5 m below seafloor (mbsf). Fungal hyphae provide the framework on which prokaryote-like organisms are suspended like cobwebs and iron-oxidizing bacteria form microstromatolites (Frutexites). The spatial inter-relationships show that the organisms were living at the same time in an integrated fashion, suggesting symbiotic interdependence. The community is contemporaneous with secondary mineralizations of calcite partly filling the cavities. The fungal hyphae frequently extend into the calcite, indicating that they were able to bore into the substrate through mineral dissolution. A symbiotic relationship with chemoautotrophs, as inferred for the observed consortium, may be a pre-requisite for the eukaryotic colonization of crustal rocks. Fossils thus open a window to the extant as well as the ancient deep biosphere. © 2014 The Authors. Geobiology Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  16. The life span of the biosphere revisited

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caldeira, Ken; Kasting, James F.

    1992-01-01

    How much longer the biosphere can survive on earth is reexamined using a more elaborate model than that of Lovelock and Whitfield (1982). The model includes a more accurate treatment of the greenhouse effect of CO2, a biologically mediated weathering parametrization, and the realization that C4 photosynthesis can persist to much lower concentrations of atmospheric CO2. It is found that a C4-plant-based biosphere could survive for at least another 0.9 Gyr to 1.5 Gyr after the present time, depending respectively on whether CO2 or temperature is the limiting factor. Within an additional 1 Gyr, earth may lose water to space, thereby following the path of Venus.

  17. Database for radionuclide transport in the biosphere

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jiskra, J.

    1985-01-01

    The biosphere model is the final link in the chain of radionuclide transport models, used for radiation dose calculations from high level waste repositories. This report presents the data needed for biosphere calculations and discusses them where necessary. The first part is dedicated to the nuclide specific parameters like distribution coefficients (water - soil), concentration ratios (soil - plant) and distribution factors (for milk, meat etc.) which are reported in the literature. The second part contains the choice of regions, their division into compartments and the discussion of nutritional habits for man and animals. At the end a theoretical population for each region is estimated based on the consumption rates and on the yield of agricultural products, assuming an autonomous nutrition. (Auth.)

  18. Data management at Biosphere 2 center

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCreary, Leone F.

    1997-01-01

    Throughout the history of Biosphere 2, the collecting and recording of biological data has been sporadic. Currently no active effort to administer and record regular biological surveys is being made. Also, there is no central location, such as an on-site data library, where all records from various studies have been archived. As a research institute, good, complete data records are at the core of all Biosphere 2's scientific endeavors. It is therefore imperative that an effective data management system be implemented within the management and research departments as soon as possible. Establishing this system would require three general phases: (1) Design/implement a new archiving/management program (including storage, cataloging and retrieval systems); (2) Organize and input baseline and intermediate data from existing archives; and (3) Maintain records by inputting new data.

  19. User's guide to the biosphere code BIOMOD

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kane, P.

    1983-05-01

    BIOMOD has been designed to interface with SYVAC, the function of which is to perform generic risk assessments on hypothetical repository-geosphere-biosphere combinations. The user's guide contains the detailed specifications for the models used, a description of the interim user-interface, a specification for required input and definition of output. Sources of error are indicated and reference is made to the database description and other documents issued relating to BIOMOD. (author)

  20. Interaction between Hydrosphere and Biosphere: Challenges and Opportunities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumar, P.; Sivapalan, M.

    2007-12-01

    Vegetated terrestrial ecosystems and the overlying atmosphere are dynamically linked though the continuous transfer of mass, energy and momentum. The hydrologic variability interacts with the vegetation at time scales ranging from hours to days to inter-annual and decadal. The existing distribution of ecosystems is a result of evolutionary selections in response to environmental constraints which are themselves modified as terrestrial systems evolve until reaching a dynamic equilibrium. However this balance is changing, often rapidly, in response to anthropogenic influences such as climate change, land use/land cover change, and urban and agricultural expansions. Evidence suggests that vegetation response is adaptive in that they alter their survival strategies in response to environmental change, for example, through development of deep rooting and using hydraulic redistribution to better utilize the available moisture in the deeper soil layers. Yet little is known on how this impacts the hydrologic cycle and its variability. Active and adaptive control of vegetation and atmospheric flow moves soil-moisture that is no longer constrained by watershed boundaries. How do the atmospheric and terrestrial moisture, and vegetation interact to produce the observed variability in the water cycle and how does/will this variability change in response to the anthropogenic influences? What are the ecological consequences of this change? These broad questions lie at the heart of understanding the interaction between the hydrosphere and biosphere. Some specific questions to address are: · How does biosphere mediate the interaction between long time scale sub-surface hydrology and short time scale atmospheric hydrologic cycle? · How has this interaction given rise to the observed self-organized patterns of ecosystems and how do these ecosystems sustain the hydrologic regime needed for their own sustenance? · How are the dynamic regimes of ecohydrologic interactions affected by

  1. A new extant species of Electribius Crowson from Honduras (Coleoptera: Elateroidea: Artematopodidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gimmel, Matthew L; Bocakova, Milada

    2015-03-05

    A new extant species of Electribius Crowson, E. llamae sp.n., is described from Cusuco National Park, Cortés Province, Honduras. This new species lacks one of the supposed autapomorphies of the genus; therefore the definition of the genus requires modification. A revised key to the known extant species is presented, and their known distributions are mapped.

  2. The Biosphere as a Living System. On Peculiarities of the Evolutionary Process on the Biosphere Level

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexej Yablokov

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available The main purpose of this second essay the “biospherology” is to streamline and formalize the existing knowledge about the biosphere, to develop the theoretical basis of the theory of evolution of the biosphere. Despite the vast amount of research on ways of origin and development of life, yet there is no generally accepted theory of evolution of life on Earth, which would not only contain the phenomenology of this process, but also an understanding of the mechanism of functioning of the biosphere as a self-regulating living organism. In the first essay, the necessity of such an understanding to preserve life-supporting functions of the biosphere under increasing anthropogenic pressure. As solution it has been proposed in the form of transition to the managed (controlled evolution of the biosphere – to process of maintenance of life-supporting ability of the biosphere by management of Humankind activity. This essay is an attempt to create a consistent picture of the structure and functioning of the Earth life, the main achievements of the evolution of life, led to the almost completely closed (to the Anthropocene self-sustaining biosphere cycling of substance and energy, the growth of "sum of life" and evolve the social form of matter from biological one. The proposed view of the multidimensional picture of life on Earth consists of the determination of necessary and sufficient properties of a life matter, formulate functioning principles of the life, and determind of the different levels of organization of life. Among the main features of living: discreetness, integritiness, self-reproducibility, dissymmetriness, cooperativeness, mortality, orderness, energy saturation, informational content. Among the main principles of the functioning of the life: the unity of the biological structure (phenotype and the program for its construction (genotype, transmitted in generations; matrix way of transmission of the programs of development

  3. Subsurface quality assurance practices

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1987-08-01

    This report addresses only the concept of applying Nuclear Quality Assurance (NQA) practices to repository shaft and subsurface design and construction; how NQA will be applied; and the level of detail required in the documentation for construction of a shaft and subsurface repository in contrast to the level of detail required in the documentation for construction of a traditional mine. This study determined that NQA practices are viable, attainable, as well as required. The study identified the appropriate NQA criteria and the repository's major structures, systems, items, and activities to which the criteria are applicable. A QA plan, for design and construction, and a list of documentation, for construction, are presented. 7 refs., 1 fig., 18 tabs

  4. Subsurface contaminants focus area

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1996-08-01

    The US Department of Enregy (DOE) Subsurface Contaminants Focus Area is developing technologies to address environmental problems associated with hazardous and radioactive contaminants in soil and groundwater that exist throughout the DOE complex, including radionuclides, heavy metals; and dense non-aqueous phase liquids (DNAPLs). More than 5,700 known DOE groundwater plumes have contaminated over 600 billion gallons of water and 200 million cubic meters of soil. Migration of these plumes threatens local and regional water sources, and in some cases has already adversely impacted off-site rsources. In addition, the Subsurface Contaminants Focus Area is responsible for supplying technologies for the remediation of numerous landfills at DOE facilities. These landfills are estimated to contain over 3 million cubic meters of radioactive and hazardous buried Technology developed within this specialty area will provide efective methods to contain contaminant plumes and new or alternative technologies for development of in situ technologies to minimize waste disposal costs and potential worker exposure by treating plumes in place. While addressing contaminant plumes emanating from DOE landfills, the Subsurface Contaminants Focus Area is also working to develop new or alternative technologies for the in situ stabilization, and nonintrusive characterization of these disposal sites

  5. Subsurface contaminants focus area

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    1996-08-01

    The US Department of Enregy (DOE) Subsurface Contaminants Focus Area is developing technologies to address environmental problems associated with hazardous and radioactive contaminants in soil and groundwater that exist throughout the DOE complex, including radionuclides, heavy metals; and dense non-aqueous phase liquids (DNAPLs). More than 5,700 known DOE groundwater plumes have contaminated over 600 billion gallons of water and 200 million cubic meters of soil. Migration of these plumes threatens local and regional water sources, and in some cases has already adversely impacted off-site rsources. In addition, the Subsurface Contaminants Focus Area is responsible for supplying technologies for the remediation of numerous landfills at DOE facilities. These landfills are estimated to contain over 3 million cubic meters of radioactive and hazardous buried Technology developed within this specialty area will provide efective methods to contain contaminant plumes and new or alternative technologies for development of in situ technologies to minimize waste disposal costs and potential worker exposure by treating plumes in place. While addressing contaminant plumes emanating from DOE landfills, the Subsurface Contaminants Focus Area is also working to develop new or alternative technologies for the in situ stabilization, and nonintrusive characterization of these disposal sites.

  6. The Biosphere as a Living System. On Peculiarities of the Evolutionary Process on the Biosphere Level

    OpenAIRE

    Alexej Yablokov; Vladimir Levchenko; Anatolij Kerzhentsev

    2016-01-01

    The main purpose of this second essay the “biospherology” is to streamline and formalize the existing knowledge about the biosphere, to develop the theoretical basis of the theory of evolution of the biosphere. Despite the vast amount of research on ways of origin and development of life, yet there is no generally accepted theory of evolution of life on Earth, which would not only contain the phenomenology of this process, but also an understanding of the mechanism of functioning of the biosp...

  7. Agricultural and Environmental Input Parameters for the Biosphere Model

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    K. Rasmuson; K. Rautenstrauch

    2004-01-01

    This analysis is one of 10 technical reports that support the Environmental Radiation Model for Yucca Mountain Nevada (ERMYN) (i.e., the biosphere model). It documents development of agricultural and environmental input parameters for the biosphere model, and supports the use of the model to develop biosphere dose conversion factors (BDCFs). The biosphere model is one of a series of process models supporting the total system performance assessment (TSPA) for the repository at Yucca Mountain. The ERMYN provides the TSPA with the capability to perform dose assessments. A graphical representation of the documentation hierarchy for the ERMYN is presented in Figure 1-1. This figure shows the interrelationships between the major activities and their products (the analysis and model reports) that were planned in ''Technical Work Plan for Biosphere Modeling and Expert Support'' (BSC 2004 [DIRS 169573]). The ''Biosphere Model Report'' (BSC 2004 [DIRS 169460]) describes the ERMYN and its input parameters

  8. Environmental Transport Input Parameters for the Biosphere Model

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    M. Wasiolek

    2004-09-10

    This analysis report is one of the technical reports documenting the Environmental Radiation Model for Yucca Mountain, Nevada (ERMYN), a biosphere model supporting the total system performance assessment for the license application (TSPA-LA) for the geologic repository at Yucca Mountain. A graphical representation of the documentation hierarchy for the ERMYN is presented in Figure 1-1. This figure shows relationships among the reports developed for biosphere modeling and biosphere abstraction products for the TSPA-LA, as identified in the ''Technical Work Plan for Biosphere Modeling and Expert Support'' (BSC 2004 [DIRS 169573]) (TWP). This figure provides an understanding of how this report contributes to biosphere modeling in support of the license application (LA). This report is one of the five reports that develop input parameter values for the biosphere model. The ''Biosphere Model Report'' (BSC 2004 [DIRS 169460]) describes the conceptual model and the mathematical model. The input parameter reports, shown to the right of the Biosphere Model Report in Figure 1-1, contain detailed description of the model input parameters. The output of this report is used as direct input in the ''Nominal Performance Biosphere Dose Conversion Factor Analysis'' and in the ''Disruptive Event Biosphere Dose Conversion Factor Analysis'' that calculate the values of biosphere dose conversion factors (BDCFs) for the groundwater and volcanic ash exposure scenarios, respectively. The purpose of this analysis was to develop biosphere model parameter values related to radionuclide transport and accumulation in the environment. These parameters support calculations of radionuclide concentrations in the environmental media (e.g., soil, crops, animal products, and air) resulting from a given radionuclide concentration at the source of contamination (i.e., either in groundwater or in volcanic ash). The analysis

  9. Environmental Transport Input Parameters for the Biosphere Model

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    M. Wasiolek

    2004-01-01

    This analysis report is one of the technical reports documenting the Environmental Radiation Model for Yucca Mountain, Nevada (ERMYN), a biosphere model supporting the total system performance assessment for the license application (TSPA-LA) for the geologic repository at Yucca Mountain. A graphical representation of the documentation hierarchy for the ERMYN is presented in Figure 1-1. This figure shows relationships among the reports developed for biosphere modeling and biosphere abstraction products for the TSPA-LA, as identified in the ''Technical Work Plan for Biosphere Modeling and Expert Support'' (BSC 2004 [DIRS 169573]) (TWP). This figure provides an understanding of how this report contributes to biosphere modeling in support of the license application (LA). This report is one of the five reports that develop input parameter values for the biosphere model. The ''Biosphere Model Report'' (BSC 2004 [DIRS 169460]) describes the conceptual model and the mathematical model. The input parameter reports, shown to the right of the Biosphere Model Report in Figure 1-1, contain detailed description of the model input parameters. The output of this report is used as direct input in the ''Nominal Performance Biosphere Dose Conversion Factor Analysis'' and in the ''Disruptive Event Biosphere Dose Conversion Factor Analysis'' that calculate the values of biosphere dose conversion factors (BDCFs) for the groundwater and volcanic ash exposure scenarios, respectively. The purpose of this analysis was to develop biosphere model parameter values related to radionuclide transport and accumulation in the environment. These parameters support calculations of radionuclide concentrations in the environmental media (e.g., soil, crops, animal products, and air) resulting from a given radionuclide concentration at the source of contamination (i.e., either in groundwater or in volcanic ash). The analysis was performed in accordance with the TWP (BSC 2004 [DIRS 169573])

  10. Taking account of the biosphere in HLW assessment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Smith, G.M.; Grogan, H.A.

    1992-01-01

    Evaluation of the biosphere in High level Waste assessment is beset with difficulties concerned with the disparity in timescales for geosphere and biosphere processes and prediction of the long term conditions in the biosphere. These issues are discussed against the background of developments on criteria, calculational end points, timescales, environmental change and human activities, relationship to other parts of the assessment, and uncertainty and variability. In this paper an outline for a surface environment assessment program is proposed

  11. Agricultural and Environmental Input Parameters for the Biosphere Model

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kaylie Rasmuson; Kurt Rautenstrauch

    2003-01-01

    This analysis is one of nine technical reports that support the Environmental Radiation Model for Yucca Mountain Nevada (ERMYN) biosphere model. It documents input parameters for the biosphere model, and supports the use of the model to develop Biosphere Dose Conversion Factors (BDCF). The biosphere model is one of a series of process models supporting the Total System Performance Assessment (TSPA) for the repository at Yucca Mountain. The ERMYN provides the TSPA with the capability to perform dose assessments. A graphical representation of the documentation hierarchy for the ERMYN is presented in Figure 1-1. This figure shows the interrelationships between the major activities and their products (the analysis and model reports) that were planned in the biosphere Technical Work Plan (TWP, BSC 2003a). It should be noted that some documents identified in Figure 1-1 may be under development and therefore not available at the time this document is issued. The ''Biosphere Model Report'' (BSC 2003b) describes the ERMYN and its input parameters. This analysis report, ANL-MGR-MD-000006, ''Agricultural and Environmental Input Parameters for the Biosphere Model'', is one of the five reports that develop input parameters for the biosphere model. This report defines and justifies values for twelve parameters required in the biosphere model. These parameters are related to use of contaminated groundwater to grow crops. The parameter values recommended in this report are used in the soil, plant, and carbon-14 submodels of the ERMYN

  12. 1.3 Radioactivity in the biosphere

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1985-01-01

    The term biosphere is defined comprising specific properties of the live envelope of the Earth. The classification of its sources is discussed. The concepts of ecology and ecosystem are defined and the differences are characterized between the aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems. Radiation ecology studies the interaction of radioactive materials and of radiation with the environment. Ecologically important radionuclides are listed with their ecological importance and the highest permissible concentrations in the air and water. Radionuclides are classified by their relative toxicity. (J.C.)

  13. The water cycle in closed ecological systems: Perspectives from the Biosphere 2 and Laboratory Biosphere systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nelson, Mark; Dempster, W. F.; Allen, J. P.

    2009-12-01

    To achieve sustainable, healthy closed ecological systems requires solutions to challenges of closing the water cycle - recycling wastewater/irrigation water/soil medium leachate and evaporated water and supplying water of required quality as needed for different needs within the facility. Engineering Biosphere 2, the first multi-biome closed ecological system within a total airtight footprint of 12,700 m 2 with a combined volume of 200,000 m 3 with a total water capacity of some 6 × 10 6 L of water was especially challenging because it included human inhabitants, their agricultural and technical systems, as well as five analogue ecosystems ranging from rainforest to desert, freshwater ecologies to saltwater systems like mangrove and mini-ocean coral reef ecosystems. By contrast, the Laboratory Biosphere - a small (40 m 3 volume) soil-based plant growth facility with a footprint of 15 m 2 - is a very simplified system, but with similar challenges re salinity management and provision of water quality suitable for plant growth. In Biosphere 2, water needs included supplying potable water for people and domestic animals, irrigation water for a wide variety of food crops, and recycling and recovering soil nutrients from wastewater. In the wilderness biomes, providing adequately low salinity freshwater terrestrial ecosystems and maintaining appropriate salinity and pH in aquatic/marine ecosystems were challenges. The largest reservoirs in Biosphere 2 were the ocean/marsh with some 4 × 10 6 L, soil with 1 to 2 × 10 6 l, primary storage tank with 0 to 8 × 10 5 L and storage tanks for condensate and soil leachate collection and mixing tanks with a capacity of 1.6 × 10 5 L to supply irrigation for farm and wilderness ecosystems. Other reservoirs were far smaller - humidity in the atmosphere (2 × 10 3 L), streams in the rainforest and savannah, and seasonal pools in the desert were orders of magnitude smaller (8 × 10 4 L). Key technologies included condensation from

  14. Subsurface Biogeochemistry of Actinides

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kersting, Annie B. [Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (LLNL), Livermore, CA (United States). Univ. Relations and Science Education; Zavarin, Mavrik [Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (LLNL), Livermore, CA (United States). Glenn T. Seaborg Inst.

    2016-06-29

    A major scientific challenge in environmental sciences is to identify the dominant processes controlling actinide transport in the environment. It is estimated that currently, over 2200 metric tons of plutonium (Pu) have been deposited in the subsurface worldwide, a number that increases yearly with additional spent nuclear fuel (Ewing et al., 2010). Plutonium has been shown to migrate on the scale of kilometers, giving way to a critical concern that the fundamental biogeochemical processes that control its behavior in the subsurface are not well understood (Kersting et al., 1999; Novikov et al., 2006; Santschi et al., 2002). Neptunium (Np) is less prevalent in the environment; however, it is predicted to be a significant long-term dose contributor in high-level nuclear waste. Our focus on Np chemistry in this Science Plan is intended to help formulate a better understanding of Pu redox transformations in the environment and clarify the differences between the two long-lived actinides. The research approach of our Science Plan combines (1) Fundamental Mechanistic Studies that identify and quantify biogeochemical processes that control actinide behavior in solution and on solids, (2) Field Integration Studies that investigate the transport characteristics of Pu and test our conceptual understanding of actinide transport, and (3) Actinide Research Capabilities that allow us to achieve the objectives of this Scientific Focus Area (SFA and provide new opportunities for advancing actinide environmental chemistry. These three Research Thrusts form the basis of our SFA Science Program (Figure 1).

  15. Characteristics of the Receptor for the Biosphere Model

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wasiolek, M.A.; Rautenstrauch, K.R.

    2003-01-01

    This analysis report is one of the technical reports containing documentation of the Environmental Radiation Model for Yucca Mountain Nevada (ERMYN), a biosphere model supporting the Total System Performance Assessment (TSPA) for the geologic repository at Yucca Mountain. A graphical representation of the documentation hierarchy for the ERMYN is presented in Figure 1-1. This figure shows relationships among the products (i.e., analysis and model reports) developed for biosphere modeling and biosphere abstraction products for TSPA, as identified in the ''Technical Work Plan: for Biosphere Modeling and Expert Support'' (TWP) (BSC 2003). Some documents identified in Figure 1-1 may be under development and not available at the time this report is issued. This figure is included to provide an understanding of how this analysis report contributes to biosphere modeling in support of the license application, and access to the listed documents is not required to understand the contents of this report. This report is one of the reports that develop input parameter values for the biosphere model. The ''Biosphere Model Report'' (BSC 2003), describes the conceptual model as well as the mathematical model and its input parameters. The purpose of this analysis report is to define values for biosphere model parameters that are related to the dietary, lifestyle, and dosimetric characteristics of the receptor. The biosphere model, consistent with the licensing rule at 10 CFR Part 63, uses a hypothetical person called the reasonably maximally exposed individual (RMEI) to represent the potentially exposed population. The parameters that define the RMEI are based on the behaviors and characteristics of the Amargosa Valley population, consistent with the requirements of 10 CFR 63.312. Amargosa Valley is the community, located in the direction of the projected groundwater flow path, where most of the farming in the area occurs. The parameter values developed in this report support the

  16. Characteristics of the Receptor for the Biosphere Model

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    M.A. Wasiolek; K.R. Rautenstrauch

    2003-06-27

    This analysis report is one of the technical reports containing documentation of the Environmental Radiation Model for Yucca Mountain Nevada (ERMYN), a biosphere model supporting the Total System Performance Assessment (TSPA) for the geologic repository at Yucca Mountain. A graphical representation of the documentation hierarchy for the ERMYN is presented in Figure 1-1. This figure shows relationships among the products (i.e., analysis and model reports) developed for biosphere modeling and biosphere abstraction products for TSPA, as identified in the ''Technical Work Plan: for Biosphere Modeling and Expert Support'' (TWP) (BSC 2003). Some documents identified in Figure 1-1 may be under development and not available at the time this report is issued. This figure is included to provide an understanding of how this analysis report contributes to biosphere modeling in support of the license application, and access to the listed documents is not required to understand the contents of this report. This report is one of the reports that develop input parameter values for the biosphere model. The ''Biosphere Model Report'' (BSC 2003), describes the conceptual model as well as the mathematical model and its input parameters. The purpose of this analysis report is to define values for biosphere model parameters that are related to the dietary, lifestyle, and dosimetric characteristics of the receptor. The biosphere model, consistent with the licensing rule at 10 CFR Part 63, uses a hypothetical person called the reasonably maximally exposed individual (RMEI) to represent the potentially exposed population. The parameters that define the RMEI are based on the behaviors and characteristics of the Amargosa Valley population, consistent with the requirements of 10 CFR 63.312. Amargosa Valley is the community, located in the direction of the projected groundwater flow path, where most of the farming in the area occurs. The parameter values

  17. Inhalation Exposure Input Parameters for the Biosphere Model

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    K. Rautenstrauch

    2004-09-10

    This analysis is one of 10 reports that support the Environmental Radiation Model for Yucca Mountain, Nevada (ERMYN) biosphere model. The ''Biosphere Model Report'' (BSC 2004 [DIRS 169460]) describes in detail the conceptual model as well as the mathematical model and its input parameters. This report documents development of input parameters for the biosphere model that are related to atmospheric mass loading and supports the use of the model to develop biosphere dose conversion factors (BDCFs). The biosphere model is one of a series of process models supporting the total system performance assessment (TSPA) for a Yucca Mountain repository. Inhalation Exposure Input Parameters for the Biosphere Model is one of five reports that develop input parameters for the biosphere model. A graphical representation of the documentation hierarchy for the ERMYN is presented in Figure 1-1. This figure shows the interrelationships among the products (i.e., analysis and model reports) developed for biosphere modeling, and the plan for development of the biosphere abstraction products for TSPA, as identified in the Technical Work Plan for Biosphere Modeling and Expert Support (BSC 2004 [DIRS 169573]). This analysis report defines and justifies values of mass loading for the biosphere model. Mass loading is the total mass concentration of resuspended particles (e.g., dust, ash) in a volume of air. Mass loading values are used in the air submodel of ERMYN to calculate concentrations of radionuclides in air inhaled by a receptor and concentrations in air surrounding crops. Concentrations in air to which the receptor is exposed are then used in the inhalation submodel to calculate the dose contribution to the receptor from inhalation of contaminated airborne particles. Concentrations in air surrounding plants are used in the plant submodel to calculate the concentrations of radionuclides in foodstuffs contributed from uptake by foliar interception.

  18. Inhalation Exposure Input Parameters for the Biosphere Model

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    K. Rautenstrauch

    2004-01-01

    This analysis is one of 10 reports that support the Environmental Radiation Model for Yucca Mountain, Nevada (ERMYN) biosphere model. The ''Biosphere Model Report'' (BSC 2004 [DIRS 169460]) describes in detail the conceptual model as well as the mathematical model and its input parameters. This report documents development of input parameters for the biosphere model that are related to atmospheric mass loading and supports the use of the model to develop biosphere dose conversion factors (BDCFs). The biosphere model is one of a series of process models supporting the total system performance assessment (TSPA) for a Yucca Mountain repository. Inhalation Exposure Input Parameters for the Biosphere Model is one of five reports that develop input parameters for the biosphere model. A graphical representation of the documentation hierarchy for the ERMYN is presented in Figure 1-1. This figure shows the interrelationships among the products (i.e., analysis and model reports) developed for biosphere modeling, and the plan for development of the biosphere abstraction products for TSPA, as identified in the Technical Work Plan for Biosphere Modeling and Expert Support (BSC 2004 [DIRS 169573]). This analysis report defines and justifies values of mass loading for the biosphere model. Mass loading is the total mass concentration of resuspended particles (e.g., dust, ash) in a volume of air. Mass loading values are used in the air submodel of ERMYN to calculate concentrations of radionuclides in air inhaled by a receptor and concentrations in air surrounding crops. Concentrations in air to which the receptor is exposed are then used in the inhalation submodel to calculate the dose contribution to the receptor from inhalation of contaminated airborne particles. Concentrations in air surrounding plants are used in the plant submodel to calculate the concentrations of radionuclides in foodstuffs contributed from uptake by foliar interception

  19. The natural radioactivity of the biosphere

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Pertsov, L A

    1967-07-01

    Of the approximately 1200 isotopes presently known more than 900 are radioactive. The nuclei of these isotopes are unstable and decay spontaneously emitting ionizing gamma-, alpha- or beta-radiation. The overwhelming majority of known radioactive isotopes have been obtained artificially; only a few are natural. Numerous investigations have shown that many of the natural radioactive isotopes can be grouped into three radioactive families. Each such family is characterized by the existence of one long-lived isotope - the family parent, one gaseous isotope of radon, intermediate radioactive decay products and final stable isotopes of atomic weights 206, 207 and 208. No such generic relationship has been established among the remaining natural radioactive isotopes. The purpose of the book, in contrast to some recent review works, is to present, in addition to a summary of reference data characterizing the radioactivity levels of various components of the biosphere, a description of those phenomena and regularities which will apparently make it possible to understand more completely the basic dynamics of the natural radioactivity of the biosphere and, consequently, contribute to a more correct interpretation of radiation-hygiene in each specific case.

  20. Comparison of biospheric models of radionuclides transfer

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Garcia-Olivares, A.; Carrasco, E.

    1992-01-01

    The international BIOMOVS A4 exercise has made possible that a set of biospheric transfer models could predict the daily radionuclide concentration in soils, forage and some animal products (cow milk and beef) after the Chernobyl accident. The aim was to compare these predictions with experimental results in 13 locations around the world. The data provided were essentially the daily air contamination and precipitation and some site-dependent parameters. It was a blind test, the locations and experimental measures were not revealed in advance. Twenty-three models (quasi-steady state and time-dependent models) were involved in the study. In this paper an explicit criterion has been used in order to select the models that better fitted the experimental results. In nine selected locations a comparative analysis between these models has been carried out for obtaining the structural and parametric coincidences that could explain their relatively good performance. The first evidence obtained has been that a wide set of models were able to predict the order of magnitude of the nuclides time-integrated concentrations in several important biospheric comportments. But only a few models, all of them with a 'dynamical' structure, fitted the daily behavior with the reasonable agreement. The dynamical structure of the five most successful models at predicting for Caesium 137 (CIRCLE, ECOSYS, PATHWAY, PRYMA and RAGTIME) shows some common patterns that may be relevant for a better modelling of nuclear accident scenarios. (author)

  1. BIOSPHERE MODELING AT YUCCA MOUNTAIN, NEVADA

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    NING LIU; JEFFERY, J.; TAPPEN, DE WU; CHAO-HSIUNG TUNG

    1998-01-01

    The objectives of the biosphere modeling efforts are to assess how radionuclides potentially released from the proposed repository could be transported through a variety of environmental media. The study of these transport mechanisms, referred to as pathways, is critical in calculating the potential radiation dose to man. Since most of the existing and pending regulations applicable to the Project are radiation dose based standards, the biosphere modeling effort will provide crucial technical input to support the Viability Assessment (VA), the Working Draft of License Application (WDLA), and the Environmental Impact Statement (EIS). In 1982, the Nuclear Waste Policy Act (NWPA) was enacted into law. This federal law, which was amended in 1987, addresses the national issue of geologic disposal of high-level nuclear waste generated by commercial nuclear power plants, as well as defense programs during the past few decades. As required by the law, the Department of Energy (DOE) is conducting a site characterization project at Yucca Mountain, Nevada, approximately 100 miles northwest of Las Vegas, Nevada, to determine if the site is suitable for the nation's first high-level nuclear waste repository

  2. The natural radioactivity of the biosphere

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pertsov, L.A.

    1967-01-01

    Of the approximately 1200 isotopes presently known more than 900 are radioactive. The nuclei of these isotopes are unstable and decay spontaneously emitting ionizing gamma-, alpha- or beta-radiation. The overwhelming majority of known radioactive isotopes have been obtained artificially; only a few are natural. Numerous investigations have shown that many of the natural radioactive isotopes can be grouped into three radioactive families. Each such family is characterized by the existence of one long-lived isotope - the family parent, one gaseous isotope of radon, intermediate radioactive decay products and final stable isotopes of atomic weights 206, 207 and 208. No such generic relationship has been established among the remaining natural radioactive isotopes. The purpose of the book, in contrast to some recent review works, is to present, in addition to a summary of reference data characterizing the radioactivity levels of various components of the biosphere, a description of those phenomena and regularities which will apparently make it possible to understand more completely the basic dynamics of the natural radioactivity of the biosphere and, consequently, contribute to a more correct interpretation of radiation-hygiene in each specific case

  3. Mars extant-life campaign using an approach based on Earth-analog habitats

    Science.gov (United States)

    Palkovic, Lawrence A.; Wilson, Thomas J.

    2005-01-01

    The Mars Robotic Outpost group at JPL has identified sixteen potential momentous discoveries that if found on Mars would alter planning for the future Mars exploration program. This paper details one possible approach to the discovery of and response to the 'momentous discovery'' of extant life on Mars. The approach detailed in this paper, the Mars Extant-Life (MEL) campaign, is a comprehensive and flexible program to find living organisms on Mars by studying Earth-analog habitats of extremophile communities.

  4. Interim report on reference biospheres for radioactive waste disposal

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Dorp, F. van [NAGRA (Switzerland)] [and others

    1994-10-01

    Primary criteria for repository safety are commonly expressed in terms of risk or dose, and a biosphere model is required to evaluate the corresponding assessment endpoints. Even when other indicators are used to express the safety goals, a biosphere model is still needed in order to justify those indicators. In safety or performance assessments of a repository, the uncertainties in space and time for the different components of the repository system have to be considered. For the biosphere component, prediction of future human habits, in particular, is extremely uncertain. This is especially important in the assessment of deep geological disposal, which involves very long timescales, particularly for wastes containing very long lived radionuclides. Thus, the results of biosphere modelling should not be seen as predictions, but as illustrations of the consequences that may occur, should the postulated release occur today or under other conditions implied by the underlying biosphere model assumptions. Differences in biosphere modelling approaches arise because of differences in regulations, the nature of the wastes to be disposed of, disposal site characteristics, disposal concepts and purposes of the assessment. Differences in treatment of uncertainties can also arise. For example, if doses or risks are anticipated to be far below regulatory limits, assessments may be based upon simplified and, necessarily, conservative biosphere models. At present biosphere models used to assess radioactive waste disposal show significant differences in the features, events and processes (FEPs) included or excluded. In general, the reasons for these differences have not been well documented or explained. Developments in radioecology have implications for biosphere modelling for radioactive waste disposal. In particular, after the Chernobyl accident, radioecological research has been significantly increased. Results of this research are already having and will continue to have a

  5. Interim report on reference biospheres for radioactive waste disposal

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Dorp, F van [NAGRA (Switzerland); and others

    1994-10-01

    Primary criteria for repository safety are commonly expressed in terms of risk or dose, and a biosphere model is required to evaluate the corresponding assessment endpoints. Even when other indicators are used to express the safety goals, a biosphere model is still needed in order to justify those indicators. In safety or performance assessments of a repository, the uncertainties in space and time for the different components of the repository system have to be considered. For the biosphere component, prediction of future human habits, in particular, is extremely uncertain. This is especially important in the assessment of deep geological disposal, which involves very long timescales, particularly for wastes containing very long lived radionuclides. Thus, the results of biosphere modelling should not be seen as predictions, but as illustrations of the consequences that may occur, should the postulated release occur today or under other conditions implied by the underlying biosphere model assumptions. Differences in biosphere modelling approaches arise because of differences in regulations, the nature of the wastes to be disposed of, disposal site characteristics, disposal concepts and purposes of the assessment. Differences in treatment of uncertainties can also arise. For example, if doses or risks are anticipated to be far below regulatory limits, assessments may be based upon simplified and, necessarily, conservative biosphere models. At present biosphere models used to assess radioactive waste disposal show significant differences in the features, events and processes (FEPs) included or excluded. In general, the reasons for these differences have not been well documented or explained. Developments in radioecology have implications for biosphere modelling for radioactive waste disposal. In particular, after the Chernobyl accident, radioecological research has been significantly increased. Results of this research are already having and will continue to have a

  6. Factual biosphere database for Dounreay and the surrounding area

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Broderick, M.A.

    1991-12-01

    This report documents from open published sources a factual database appropriate to the Dounreay region including the coastal marine environment for present day biosphere conditions. A detailed description of the present day environment in the Dounreay area is provided. This includes a description of the natural environment and climate. Site specific data required for biosphere modelling are also outlined. (author)

  7. Ecotourism and its effects on wildlife of Pachmarhi Biosphere Reserve

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    use

    “increase in international tourist arrivals from 25 million in. 1950 to 664 ... In its most basic sense, tourism can be ... sustainable use of wildlife in the Manu Biosphere ... ecotourism as it helps to educate people on the ... Sci. Technol. Table 1. Madai entrance to Pachmarhi Biosphere Reserve. .... in educational institutions.

  8. Factual biosphere database for Dounreay and the surrounding area

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Broderick, M A [ANS Consultants Ltd., Epsom (United Kingdom)

    1991-12-01

    This report documents from open published sources a factual database appropriate to the Dounreay region including the coastal marine environment for present day biosphere conditions. A detailed description of the present day environment in the Dounreay area is provided. This includes a description of the natural environment and climate. Site specific data required for biosphere modelling are also outlined. (author).

  9. Factual biosphere database for Sellafield and the surrounding area

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Broderick, M A [ANS Consultants Ltd., Epsom (United Kingdom)

    1991-12-01

    This report documents from open published sources a factual database appropriate to the Sellafield region including the coastal marine environment for present day biosphere conditions. A detailed description of the present day environment in the Sellafield area is provided. This includes a description of the natural environment and climate. Site specific data required for biosphere modelling are also outlined. (author).

  10. Factual biosphere database for Sellafield and the surrounding area

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Broderick, M.A.

    1991-12-01

    This report documents from open published sources a factual database appropriate to the Sellafield region including the coastal marine environment for present day biosphere conditions. A detailed description of the present day environment in the Sellafield area is provided. This includes a description of the natural environment and climate. Site specific data required for biosphere modelling are also outlined. (author)

  11. Reviewing Biosphere Reserves globally: effective conservation action or bureaucratic label?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coetzer, Kaera L; Witkowski, Edward T F; Erasmus, Barend F N

    2014-02-01

    The Biosphere Reserve (BR) model of UNESCO's Man and the Biosphere Programme reflects a shift towards more accountable conservation. Biosphere Reserves attempt to reconcile environmental protection with sustainable development; they explicitly acknowledge humans, and human interests in the conservation landscape while still maintaining the ecological values of existing protected areas. Conceptually, this model is attractive, with 610 sites currently designated globally. Yet the practical reality of implementing dual 'conservation' and 'development' goals is challenging, with few examples successfully conforming to the model's full criteria. Here, we review the history of Biosphere Reserves from first inception in 1974 to the current status quo, and examine the suitability of the designation as an effective conservation model. We track the spatial expansion of Biosphere Reserves globally, assessing the influence of the Statutory Framework of the World Network of Biosphere Reserves and Seville strategy in 1995, when the BR concept refocused its core objectives on sustainable development. We use a comprehensive range of case studies to discuss conformity to the Programme, the social and ecological consequences associated with implementation of the designation, and challenges in aligning conservation and development. Given that the 'Biosphere Reserve' label is a relatively unknown designation in the public arena, this review also provides details on popularising the Biosphere Reserve brand, as well as prospects for further research, currently unexploited, but implicit in the designation. © 2013 The Authors. Biological Reviews © 2013 Cambridge Philosophical Society.

  12. Clays and Carbonates in a Groundwater-Fed 3.8 Ga Martian Lake: Insights to Subsurface Habitability on Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michalski, Joseph; Niles, Paul

    2015-01-01

    On Earth, the deep biosphere remains a largely unexplored, but clearly important carbon reservoir. Results from some uplifted central peaks in craters on Mars indicate that substantial carbon was also present at depth and might have helped sustain a deep biosphere. In fact, many factors relevant to deep biosphere habitability are more favorable on Mars than on Earth (e.g. porosity of the crust, geothermal gradient). Future exploration of Mars should include landing sites where materials have been exhumed from depth by meteor impact or basins where subsurface fluids have emerged, carrying clues to subsurface habitability. One of the most astrobiologically interesting sites on Mars McLaughlin Crater, a 93 km-diameter impact crater that formed approximately 4 b.y. ago. On the floor of the crater is a stratigraphic section of subhorizontal, layered sedimentary rocks with strong spectroscopic evidence for Fe-rich clay minerals and Mg-rich carbonates, which we interpret as ancient lacustrine deposits. The fluids that formed these materials likely originated in the subsurface, based on the paucity of channels leading into the crater basin and the fact that this is one of the deepest basins on Mars - a good candidate to have experienced upwelling of subsurface fluids. Therefore, the deposits within McLaughlin crater provide insight into subsurface processes on Mars. In this presentation, we will discuss the habitability of the martian subsurface as well as the geology of McLaughlin Crater and the possibility to detect biomarkers at that site with a future landed mission.

  13. The Biosphere as a Living System. On the Harmonization of Human and Biosphere Relationship

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexey Yablokov

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available The evolution of the biosphere has led to creation of astrophysical and telluric stable perfect system biotic regulation, which based on a high degree of closure of natural cycles. The development of human beings as bio-social, beyond the biological patterns, break these closed cycles, and dramatically broke the biotic regulation of the biosphere. As results — sustainable biosphere has become unsustainable anthroposphere. As with the origin of life physico-chemical regularities of the structure of matter turned out to be “mastered” life, as soon as with the emergence of anthroposphere physical-chemicalbiological regularities of evolution are complemented by social ones (including technology development and of the technosphere — as the essential content of anthroposphere. The result of the violation of natural biotic regulation broke a global environmental crisis that boomerang begins it is dangerous to human. It is theoretically possible to overcome this ecological crisis by the transition from the Neolithic paradigm of “nature conquest”, to the organization of “crisis management” of the biosphere (world system governance by the activity of the society restore and “repair” the damaged processes in the biosphere. This requires a new organization in all areas of human activity, i.e., a fundamentally new paradigm of human behavior on the planet. Development within the paradigm of the Neolithic culture (extensive use of natural resources, is inevitably associated with different kinds of wars in their redistribution, leads to an increasing accumulation of non-degradable waste (tertiary anthropogenic products, determines the fatal instability of anthroposphere and, therefore, unsustainable development of civilization. It is a mistake to assume that human’s dependence on nature is reduced — it takes a different form. The forces of human as an intelligence being, “recollecting himself”, about the offense with lifesupporting

  14. The Potential for Low-Temperature Abiotic Hydrogen Generation and a Hydrogen-Driven Deep Biosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Shanshan; Thorseth, Ingunn H.

    2011-01-01

    Abstract The release and oxidation of ferrous iron during aqueous alteration of the mineral olivine is known to reduce aqueous solutions to such extent that molecular hydrogen, H2, forms. H2 is an efficient energy carrier and is considered basal to the deep subsurface biosphere. Knowledge of the potential for H2 generation is therefore vital to understanding the deep biosphere on Earth and on extraterrestrial bodies. Here, we provide a review of factors that may reduce the potential for H2 generation with a focus on systems in the core temperature region for thermophilic to hyperthermophilic microbial life. We show that aqueous sulfate may inhibit the formation of H2, whereas redox-sensitive compounds of carbon and nitrogen are unlikely to have significant effect at low temperatures. In addition, we suggest that the rate of H2 generation is proportional to the dissolution rate of olivine and, hence, limited by factors such as reactive surface areas and the access of water to fresh surfaces. We furthermore suggest that the availability of water and pore/fracture space are the most important factors that limit the generation of H2. Our study implies that, because of large heat flows, abundant olivine-bearing rocks, large thermodynamic gradients, and reduced atmospheres, young Earth and Mars probably offered abundant systems where microbial life could possibly have emerged. Key Words: Serpentinization—Olivine—Hydrogen—Deep biosphere—Water—Mars. Astrobiology 11, 711–724. PMID:21923409

  15. Biosphere models for safety assesment of radioactive waste disposal

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Proehl, G; Olyslaegers, G; Zeevaert, T [SCK/CEN, Mol (Belgium); Kanyar, B [University of Veszprem (Hungary). Dept. of Radiochemistry; Pinedo, P; Simon, I [Centro de Investigaciones Energeticas Medioambientales y Tecnologicas (CIEMAT), Madrid (Spain); Bergstroem, U; Hallberg, B [Studsvik Ecosafe, Nykoeping (Sweden); Mobbs, S; Chen, Q; Kowe, R [NRPB, Chilton, Didcot (United Kingdom)

    2004-07-01

    The aim of the BioMoSA project has been to contribute in the confidence building of biosphere models, for application in performance assessments of radioactive waste disposal. The detailed objectives of this project are: development and test of practical biosphere models for application in long-term safety studies of radioactive waste disposal to different European locations, identification of features, events and processes that need to be modelled on a site-specific rather than on a generic base, comparison of the results and quantification of the variability of site-specific models developed according to the reference biosphere methodology, development of a generic biosphere tool for application in long term safety studies, comparison of results from site-specific models to those from generic one, Identification of possibilities and limitations for the application of the generic biosphere model. (orig.)

  16. Biosphere models for safety assessment of radioactive waste disposal

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Proehl, G.; Olyslaegers, G.; Zeevaert, T.; Kanyar, B.; Bergstroem, U.; Hallberg, B.; Mobbs, S.; Chen, Q.; Kowe, R.

    2004-01-01

    The aim of the BioMoSA project has been to contribute in the confidence building of biosphere models, for application in performance assessments of radioactive waste disposal. The detailed objectives of this project are: development and test of practical biosphere models for application in long-term safety studies of radioactive waste disposal to different European locations, identification of features, events and processes that need to be modelled on a site-specific rather than on a generic base, comparison of the results and quantification of the variability of site-specific models developed according to the reference biosphere methodology, development of a generic biosphere tool for application in long term safety studies, comparison of results from site-specific models to those from generic one, Identification of possibilities and limitations for the application of the generic biosphere model. (orig.)

  17. Characteristics of the Receptor for the Biosphere Model

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    M. Wasiolek; K. Rautenstrauch

    2004-01-01

    This analysis report is one of a series of technical reports that document the Environmental Radiation Model for Yucca Mountain, Nevada (ERMYN), a biosphere model supporting the total system performance assessment (TSPA) for the geologic repository at Yucca Mountain. This report is one of the five biosphere reports that develop input parameter values for the biosphere model. The ''Biosphere Model Report'' (BSC 2004 [DIRS 169460]) describes the conceptual model, as well as the mathematical model and its input parameters. Figure 1-1 is a graphical representation of the documentation hierarchy for the ERMYN. This figure shows relationships among the products (i.e., scientific analyses and model reports) developed for biosphere modeling and biosphere abstraction products for TSPA, as identified in the ''Technical Work Plan: for Biosphere Modeling and Expert Support'' (BSC 2004 [DIRS 169573]). The purpose of this analysis report is to define values for biosphere model parameters that are related to the dietary, lifestyle, and dosimetric characteristics of the receptor. The biosphere model, consistent with the licensing rule at 10 CFR Part 63 [DIRS 156605], uses a hypothetical person called the reasonably maximally exposed individual (RMEI) to represent the potentially exposed population. The parameters that define the RMEI are based on the behaviors and characteristics of the residents of the unincorporated town of Amargosa Valley, consistent with the requirements of 10 CFR 63.312 [DIRS 156605]. The output of this report is used as direct input in the two analyses identified in Figure 1-1 that calculate the values of biosphere dose conversion factors (BDCFs) for the groundwater and volcanic ash exposure scenarios. The parameter values developed in this report are reflected in the TSPA through the BDCFs. The analysis was performed in accordance with AP-SIII.9Q, ''Scientific Analyses'', and the technical work plan (BSC 2004 [DIRS 169573])

  18. Characteristics of the Receptor for the Biosphere Model

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    M. Wasiolek; K. Rautenstrauch

    2004-09-09

    This analysis report is one of a series of technical reports that document the Environmental Radiation Model for Yucca Mountain, Nevada (ERMYN), a biosphere model supporting the total system performance assessment (TSPA) for the geologic repository at Yucca Mountain. This report is one of the five biosphere reports that develop input parameter values for the biosphere model. The ''Biosphere Model Report'' (BSC 2004 [DIRS 169460]) describes the conceptual model, as well as the mathematical model and its input parameters. Figure 1-1 is a graphical representation of the documentation hierarchy for the ERMYN. This figure shows relationships among the products (i.e., scientific analyses and model reports) developed for biosphere modeling and biosphere abstraction products for TSPA, as identified in the ''Technical Work Plan: for Biosphere Modeling and Expert Support'' (BSC 2004 [DIRS 169573]). The purpose of this analysis report is to define values for biosphere model parameters that are related to the dietary, lifestyle, and dosimetric characteristics of the receptor. The biosphere model, consistent with the licensing rule at 10 CFR Part 63 [DIRS 156605], uses a hypothetical person called the reasonably maximally exposed individual (RMEI) to represent the potentially exposed population. The parameters that define the RMEI are based on the behaviors and characteristics of the residents of the unincorporated town of Amargosa Valley, consistent with the requirements of 10 CFR 63.312 [DIRS 156605]. The output of this report is used as direct input in the two analyses identified in Figure 1-1 that calculate the values of biosphere dose conversion factors (BDCFs) for the groundwater and volcanic ash exposure scenarios. The parameter values developed in this report are reflected in the TSPA through the BDCFs. The analysis was performed in accordance with AP-SIII.9Q, ''Scientific Analyses'', and the technical work

  19. Subsurface Ventilation System Description Document

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Eric Loros

    2001-07-25

    The Subsurface Ventilation System supports the construction and operation of the subsurface repository by providing air for personnel and equipment and temperature control for the underground areas. Although the system is located underground, some equipment and features may be housed or located above ground. The system ventilates the underground by providing ambient air from the surface throughout the subsurface development and emplacement areas. The system provides fresh air for a safe work environment and supports potential retrieval operations by ventilating and cooling emplacement drifts. The system maintains compliance within the limits established for approved air quality standards. The system maintains separate ventilation between the development and waste emplacement areas. The system shall remove a portion of the heat generated by the waste packages during preclosure to support thermal goals. The system provides temperature control by reducing drift temperature to support potential retrieval operations. The ventilation system has the capability to ventilate selected drifts during emplacement and retrieval operations. The Subsurface Facility System is the main interface with the Subsurface Ventilation System. The location of the ducting, seals, filters, fans, emplacement doors, regulators, and electronic controls are within the envelope created by the Ground Control System in the Subsurface Facility System. The Subsurface Ventilation System also interfaces with the Subsurface Electrical System for power, the Monitored Geologic Repository Operations Monitoring and Control System to ensure proper and safe operation, the Safeguards and Security System for access to the emplacement drifts, the Subsurface Fire Protection System for fire safety, the Emplacement Drift System for repository performance, and the Backfill Emplacement and Subsurface Excavation Systems to support ventilation needs.

  20. Subsurface Ventilation System Description Document

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    2000-10-12

    The Subsurface Ventilation System supports the construction and operation of the subsurface repository by providing air for personnel and equipment and temperature control for the underground areas. Although the system is located underground, some equipment and features may be housed or located above ground. The system ventilates the underground by providing ambient air from the surface throughout the subsurface development and emplacement areas. The system provides fresh air for a safe work environment and supports potential retrieval operations by ventilating and cooling emplacement drifts. The system maintains compliance within the limits established for approved air quality standards. The system maintains separate ventilation between the development and waste emplacement areas. The system shall remove a portion of the heat generated by the waste packages during preclosure to support thermal goals. The system provides temperature control by reducing drift temperature to support potential retrieval operations. The ventilation system has the capability to ventilate selected drifts during emplacement and retrieval operations. The Subsurface Facility System is the main interface with the Subsurface Ventilation System. The location of the ducting, seals, filters, fans, emplacement doors, regulators, and electronic controls are within the envelope created by the Ground Control System in the Subsurface Facility System. The Subsurface Ventilation System also interfaces with the Subsurface Electrical System for power, the Monitored Geologic Repository Operations Monitoring and Control System to ensure proper and safe operation, the Safeguards and Security System for access to the emplacement drifts, the Subsurface Fire Protection System for fire safety, the Emplacement Drift System for repository performance, and the Backfill Emplacement and Subsurface Excavation Systems to support ventilation needs.

  1. Atmospheric and biospheric effects of cosmic

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cardenas, Rolando

    2007-01-01

    We briefly review and classify the action that different sources of cosmic radiations might have had on Earth climate and biosphere in the geological past and at present times. We present the action of both sparse explosive phenomena, like gamma-ray bursts and supernovae, and permanent ones like cosmic rays and ultraviolet radiation backgrounds. Very energetic cosmic radiation coming from explosions can deplete the ozone lawyer due to initial ionization reactions, while soft backgrounds might trigger low altitude cloud formation through certain microphysical amplification processes. We examine a hypothesis concerning the potential role of cosmic rays on present Global Climatic Change. We also present the potential of UV astronomy to probe some of above scenarios, and speak on the possibilities for the Cuban participation in the international mega-project World Space Observatory, a UV telescope to be launched in the period 2007-2009. (Author)

  2. Biosphere Reserve for All: Potentials for Involving Underrepresented Age Groups in the Development of a Biosphere Reserve through Intergenerational Practice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mitrofanenko, Tamara; Snajdr, Julia; Muhar, Andreas; Penker, Marianne; Schauppenlehner-Kloyber, Elisabeth

    2018-05-22

    Stakeholder participation is of high importance in UNESCO biosphere reserves as model regions for sustainable development; however, certain groups remain underrepresented. The paper proposes Intergenerational Practice (IP) as a means of involving youth and elderly women and explores its options and barriers, using the example of the Salzburger Lungau and Kärntner Nockberge Biosphere Reserve in Austria. Case study analysis is used involving mixed methods. The results reveal obstacles and motivations to participating in biosphere reserve implementation and intergenerational activities for the youth and the elderly women and imply that much potential for IP exists in the biosphere reserve region. The authors propose suitable solutions from the intergenerational field to overcome identified participation obstacles and suggest benefits of incorporating IP as a management tool into biosphere reserve activities. Suggestions for future research include evaluating applications of IP in the context of protected areas, testing of methods used in other contexts, and contribution to theory development.

  3. Investigations on iodine-129 in the biosphere

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Handl, J.; Oliver, E.; Jakob, D.

    1992-01-01

    In order to detect characteristic regional differences or temporal changes of iodine-129 concentrations in the biosphere, thyroids from humans, grazing livestock and roedeer (Capreolus capreolus L.) are collected in various parts of the world, which are differing in the exposure to I-129 immissions from nuclear sources. For reasons of comparison all samples are analysed for their I-129/I-127 atom ratios. Human thyroids taken from Lower Saxony (Federal Republic of Germany), which is a region not directly affected by reprocessing plants showed I-129/I-127 values between 8x10 -9 and 6x10 -8 for a period from February 1988 to September 1990. Those atom ratios correspond to the level of biospheric I-129 in background areas of Europe exposed to fallout atmospheric nuclear weapons tests during the 1950s and 1960s. Thyroid glands of roedeer taken from the Heby commune in Middle Sweden during spring 1990 showed I-129/I-127 ratios between 2x10 -7 and 4x10 -7 . Two soil samples taken from Krasnaya Gora and Mirny locations in Russia (about 200 km northwest of Chernobyl) exhibited ratios of about 1x10 -6 . According to the Cs-137 levels, the Swedish Heby area as well as both Russian locations were found to be seriously Chernobyl contaminated. Ratios found in human and bovine thyroids collected in the 10th Region in southern Chile (40deg-42degS) indicated values between 1x10 -10 and 9x10 -9 . On the basis of the prenuclear range of I-129/I-127 ratios between 4x10 -11 and 3x10 -9 , which were found in human thyroids analysed in the USA before 1945 the Chilean values can be considered only slightly elevated as compared to those determined in samples of Northern Hemisphere today. (orig.) [de

  4. Nominal Performance Biosphere Dose Conversion Factor Analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wasiolek, M.

    2000-01-01

    The purpose of this report was to document the process leading to development of the Biosphere Dose Conversion Factors (BDCFs) for the postclosure nominal performance of the potential repository at Yucca Mountain. BDCF calculations concerned twenty-four radionuclides. This selection included sixteen radionuclides that may be significant nominal performance dose contributors during the compliance period of up to 10,000 years, five additional radionuclides of importance for up to 1 million years postclosure, and three relatively short-lived radionuclides important for the human intrusion scenario. Consideration of radionuclide buildup in soil caused by previous irrigation with contaminated groundwater was taken into account in the BDCF development. The effect of climate evolution, from the current arid conditions to a wetter and cooler climate, on the BDCF values was evaluated. The analysis included consideration of different exposure pathway's contribution to the BDCFs. Calculations of nominal performance BDCFs used the GENII-S computer code in a series of probabilistic realizations to propagate the uncertainties of input parameters into the output. BDCFs for the nominal performance, when combined with the concentrations of radionuclides in groundwater allow calculation of potential radiation doses to the receptor of interest. Calculated estimates of radionuclide concentration in groundwater result from the saturated zone modeling. The integration of the biosphere modeling results (BDCFs) with the outcomes of the other component models is accomplished in the Total System Performance Assessment (TSPA) to calculate doses to the receptor of interest from radionuclides postulated to be released to the environment from the potential repository at Yucca Mountain

  5. Disruptive Event Biosphere Doser Conversion Factor Analysis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    M. Wasiolek

    2000-12-28

    The purpose of this report was to document the process leading to, and the results of, development of radionuclide-, exposure scenario-, and ash thickness-specific Biosphere Dose Conversion Factors (BDCFs) for the postulated postclosure extrusive igneous event (volcanic eruption) at Yucca Mountain. BDCF calculations were done for seventeen radionuclides. The selection of radionuclides included those that may be significant dose contributors during the compliance period of up to 10,000 years, as well as radionuclides of importance for up to 1 million years postclosure. The approach documented in this report takes into account human exposure during three different phases at the time of, and after, volcanic eruption. Calculations of disruptive event BDCFs used the GENII-S computer code in a series of probabilistic realizations to propagate the uncertainties of input parameters into the output. The pathway analysis included consideration of different exposure pathway's contribution to the BDCFs. BDCFs for volcanic eruption, when combined with the concentration of radioactivity deposited by eruption on the soil surface, allow calculation of potential radiation doses to the receptor of interest. Calculation of radioactivity deposition is outside the scope of this report and so is the transport of contaminated ash from the volcano to the location of the receptor. The integration of the biosphere modeling results (BDCFs) with the outcomes of the other component models is accomplished in the Total System Performance Assessment (TSPA), in which doses are calculated to the receptor of interest from radionuclides postulated to be released to the environment from the potential repository at Yucca Mountain.

  6. Surface Modification and Surface - Subsurface Exchange Processes on Europa

    Science.gov (United States)

    Phillips, C. B.; Molaro, J.; Hand, K. P.

    2017-12-01

    and volume of transported material will yield insight on whether such a process may provide fuel to sustain a biosphere in Europa's subsurface ocean, which is relevant to searches for life by a future mission such as a potential Europa Lander.

  7. Inhalation Exposure Input Parameters for the Biosphere Model

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    M. Wasiolek

    2006-06-05

    This analysis is one of the technical reports that support the Environmental Radiation Model for Yucca Mountain, Nevada (ERMYN), referred to in this report as the biosphere model. ''Biosphere Model Report'' (BSC 2004 [DIRS 169460]) describes in detail the conceptual model as well as the mathematical model and its input parameters. This report documents development of input parameters for the biosphere model that are related to atmospheric mass loading and supports the use of the model to develop biosphere dose conversion factors (BDCFs). The biosphere model is one of a series of process models supporting the total system performance assessment (TSPA) for a Yucca Mountain repository. ''Inhalation Exposure Input Parameters for the Biosphere Model'' is one of five reports that develop input parameters for the biosphere model. A graphical representation of the documentation hierarchy for the biosphere model is presented in Figure 1-1 (based on BSC 2006 [DIRS 176938]). This figure shows the interrelationships among the products (i.e., analysis and model reports) developed for biosphere modeling and how this analysis report contributes to biosphere modeling. This analysis report defines and justifies values of atmospheric mass loading for the biosphere model. Mass loading is the total mass concentration of resuspended particles (e.g., dust, ash) in a volume of air. Mass loading values are used in the air submodel of the biosphere model to calculate concentrations of radionuclides in air inhaled by a receptor and concentrations in air surrounding crops. Concentrations in air to which the receptor is exposed are then used in the inhalation submodel to calculate the dose contribution to the receptor from inhalation of contaminated airborne particles. Concentrations in air surrounding plants are used in the plant submodel to calculate the concentrations of radionuclides in foodstuffs contributed from uptake by foliar interception. This

  8. Inhalation Exposure Input Parameters for the Biosphere Model

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    M. Wasiolek

    2006-01-01

    This analysis is one of the technical reports that support the Environmental Radiation Model for Yucca Mountain, Nevada (ERMYN), referred to in this report as the biosphere model. ''Biosphere Model Report'' (BSC 2004 [DIRS 169460]) describes in detail the conceptual model as well as the mathematical model and its input parameters. This report documents development of input parameters for the biosphere model that are related to atmospheric mass loading and supports the use of the model to develop biosphere dose conversion factors (BDCFs). The biosphere model is one of a series of process models supporting the total system performance assessment (TSPA) for a Yucca Mountain repository. ''Inhalation Exposure Input Parameters for the Biosphere Model'' is one of five reports that develop input parameters for the biosphere model. A graphical representation of the documentation hierarchy for the biosphere model is presented in Figure 1-1 (based on BSC 2006 [DIRS 176938]). This figure shows the interrelationships among the products (i.e., analysis and model reports) developed for biosphere modeling and how this analysis report contributes to biosphere modeling. This analysis report defines and justifies values of atmospheric mass loading for the biosphere model. Mass loading is the total mass concentration of resuspended particles (e.g., dust, ash) in a volume of air. Mass loading values are used in the air submodel of the biosphere model to calculate concentrations of radionuclides in air inhaled by a receptor and concentrations in air surrounding crops. Concentrations in air to which the receptor is exposed are then used in the inhalation submodel to calculate the dose contribution to the receptor from inhalation of contaminated airborne particles. Concentrations in air surrounding plants are used in the plant submodel to calculate the concentrations of radionuclides in foodstuffs contributed from uptake by foliar interception. This report is concerned primarily with the

  9. Subsurface Facility System Description Document

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Eric Loros

    2001-01-01

    The Subsurface Facility System encompasses the location, arrangement, size, and spacing of the underground openings. This subsurface system includes accesses, alcoves, and drifts. This system provides access to the underground, provides for the emplacement of waste packages, provides openings to allow safe and secure work conditions, and interfaces with the natural barrier. This system includes what is now the Exploratory Studies Facility. The Subsurface Facility System physical location and general arrangement help support the long-term waste isolation objectives of the repository. The Subsurface Facility System locates the repository openings away from main traces of major faults, away from exposure to erosion, above the probable maximum flood elevation, and above the water table. The general arrangement, size, and spacing of the emplacement drifts support disposal of the entire inventory of waste packages based on the emplacement strategy. The Subsurface Facility System provides access ramps to safely facilitate development and emplacement operations. The Subsurface Facility System supports the development and emplacement operations by providing subsurface space for such systems as ventilation, utilities, safety, monitoring, and transportation

  10. Regionally strong feedbacks between the atmosphere and terrestrial biosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Green, Julia K.; Konings, Alexandra G.; Alemohammad, Seyed Hamed; Berry, Joseph; Entekhabi, Dara; Kolassa, Jana; Lee, Jung-Eun; Gentine, Pierre

    2017-06-01

    The terrestrial biosphere and atmosphere interact through a series of feedback loops. Variability in terrestrial vegetation growth and phenology can modulate fluxes of water and energy to the atmosphere, and thus affect the climatic conditions that in turn regulate vegetation dynamics. Here we analyse satellite observations of solar-induced fluorescence, precipitation, and radiation using a multivariate statistical technique. We find that biosphere-atmosphere feedbacks are globally widespread and regionally strong: they explain up to 30% of precipitation and surface radiation variance in regions where feedbacks occur. Substantial biosphere-precipitation feedbacks are often found in regions that are transitional between energy and water limitation, such as semi-arid or monsoonal regions. Substantial biosphere-radiation feedbacks are often present in several moderately wet regions and in the Mediterranean, where precipitation and radiation increase vegetation growth. Enhancement of latent and sensible heat transfer from vegetation accompanies this growth, which increases boundary layer height and convection, affecting cloudiness, and consequently incident surface radiation. Enhanced evapotranspiration can increase moist convection, leading to increased precipitation. Earth system models underestimate these precipitation and radiation feedbacks mainly because they underestimate the biosphere response to radiation and water availability. We conclude that biosphere-atmosphere feedbacks cluster in specific climatic regions that help determine the net CO2 balance of the biosphere.

  11. Natural releases from contaminated groundwater, Example Reference Biosphere 2B

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Simon, I. [CIEMAT/PIRA, Avda Complutense 22, 28040 Madrid (Spain)]. E-mail: isc@csn.es; Naito, M. [Nuclear Waste Management Organization of Japan (NUMO), 4-1-23 Shiba, Minato-ku, Tokyo, 108-0014 (Japan); Thorne, M.C. [Mike Thorne and Associates Limited, Abbotsleigh, Kebroyd Mount, Ripponden, Halifax, West Yorkshire HX6 3JA (United Kingdom); Walke, R. [Enviros QuantiSci, Building D5, Culham Science Centre, Culham, Oxfordshire OX14 3DB (United Kingdom)

    2005-07-01

    Safety assessment is a tool which, by means of an iterative procedure, allows the evaluation of the performance of a disposal system and its potential impact on human health and the environment. Radionuclides from a deep geological disposal facility may not reach the surface environment until many tens of thousands of years after closure of the facility. The BIOMASS Programme on BIOsphere Modelling and ASSessment developed Examples of 'Reference Biospheres' to illustrate the use of the methodology and to demonstrate how biosphere models can be developed and justified as being fit for purpose. The practical examples are also intended to be useful in their own right. The Example Reference Biosphere 2B presented here involves the consideration of alternative types of geosphere-biosphere interfaces and calculation of doses to members of hypothetical exposure groups arising from a wide range of exposure pathways within agricultural and semi-natural environments, but without allowing for evolution of the corresponding biosphere system. The example presented can be used as a generic analysis in some situations although it was developed around a relatively specific conceptual model. It should be a useful practical example, but the above numerical results are not intended to be understood as prescribed biosphere 'conversion factors'.

  12. Natural releases from contaminated groundwater, Example Reference Biosphere 2B

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Simon, I.; Naito, M.; Thorne, M.C.; Walke, R.

    2005-01-01

    Safety assessment is a tool which, by means of an iterative procedure, allows the evaluation of the performance of a disposal system and its potential impact on human health and the environment. Radionuclides from a deep geological disposal facility may not reach the surface environment until many tens of thousands of years after closure of the facility. The BIOMASS Programme on BIOsphere Modelling and ASSessment developed Examples of 'Reference Biospheres' to illustrate the use of the methodology and to demonstrate how biosphere models can be developed and justified as being fit for purpose. The practical examples are also intended to be useful in their own right. The Example Reference Biosphere 2B presented here involves the consideration of alternative types of geosphere-biosphere interfaces and calculation of doses to members of hypothetical exposure groups arising from a wide range of exposure pathways within agricultural and semi-natural environments, but without allowing for evolution of the corresponding biosphere system. The example presented can be used as a generic analysis in some situations although it was developed around a relatively specific conceptual model. It should be a useful practical example, but the above numerical results are not intended to be understood as prescribed biosphere 'conversion factors'

  13. Extant-only comparative methods fail to recover the disparity preserved in the bird fossil record.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mitchell, Jonathan S

    2015-09-01

    Most extant species are in clades with poor fossil records, and recent studies of comparative methods show they have low power to infer even highly simplified models of trait evolution without fossil data. Birds are a well-studied radiation, yet their early evolutionary patterns are still contentious. The fossil record suggests that birds underwent a rapid ecological radiation after the end-Cretaceous mass extinction, and several smaller, subsequent radiations. This hypothesized series of repeated radiations from fossil data is difficult to test using extant data alone. By uniting morphological and phylogenetic data on 604 extant genera of birds with morphological data on 58 species of extinct birds from 50 million years ago, the "halfway point" of avian evolution, I have been able to test how well extant-only methods predict the diversity of fossil forms. All extant-only methods underestimate the disparity, although the ratio of within- to between-clade disparity does suggest high early rates. The failure of standard models to predict high early disparity suggests that recent radiations are obscuring deep time patterns in the evolution of birds. Metrics from different models can be used in conjunction to provide more valuable insights than simply finding the model with the highest relative fit. © 2015 The Author(s). Evolution © 2015 The Society for the Study of Evolution.

  14. Agricultural and Environmental Input Parameters for the Biosphere Model

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kaylie Rasmuson; Kurt Rautenstrauch

    2003-06-20

    This analysis is one of nine technical reports that support the Environmental Radiation Model for Yucca Mountain Nevada (ERMYN) biosphere model. It documents input parameters for the biosphere model, and supports the use of the model to develop Biosphere Dose Conversion Factors (BDCF). The biosphere model is one of a series of process models supporting the Total System Performance Assessment (TSPA) for the repository at Yucca Mountain. The ERMYN provides the TSPA with the capability to perform dose assessments. A graphical representation of the documentation hierarchy for the ERMYN is presented in Figure 1-1. This figure shows the interrelationships between the major activities and their products (the analysis and model reports) that were planned in the biosphere Technical Work Plan (TWP, BSC 2003a). It should be noted that some documents identified in Figure 1-1 may be under development and therefore not available at the time this document is issued. The ''Biosphere Model Report'' (BSC 2003b) describes the ERMYN and its input parameters. This analysis report, ANL-MGR-MD-000006, ''Agricultural and Environmental Input Parameters for the Biosphere Model'', is one of the five reports that develop input parameters for the biosphere model. This report defines and justifies values for twelve parameters required in the biosphere model. These parameters are related to use of contaminated groundwater to grow crops. The parameter values recommended in this report are used in the soil, plant, and carbon-14 submodels of the ERMYN.

  15. Subsurface remote sensing

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Schweitzer, Jeffrey S.; Groves, Joel L.

    2002-01-01

    Subsurface remote sensing measurements are widely used for oil and gas exploration, for oil and gas production monitoring, and for basic studies in the earth sciences. Radiation sensors, often including small accelerator sources, are used to obtain bulk properties of the surrounding strata as well as to provide detailed elemental analyses of the rocks and fluids in rock pores. Typically, instrument packages are lowered into a borehole at the end of a long cable, that may be as long as 10 km, and two-way data and instruction telemetry allows a single radiation instrument to operate in different modes and to send the data to a surface computer. Because these boreholes are often in remote locations throughout the world, the data are frequently transmitted by satellite to various locations around the world for almost real-time analysis and incorporation with other data. The complete system approach that permits rapid and reliable data acquisition, remote analysis and transmission to those making decisions is described

  16. Demonstration of DECOS: representation of four biosphere states

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ashton, J.

    1988-09-01

    This report describes the use of the dynamic biosphere code, DECOS, in stand alone mode, to represent a site in four possible biosphere states. The biosphere states have been chosen to illustrate a range of conditions which may prevail at the site. The behaviour of the system in each state has been considered and the capability of DECOS to switch between the states has been demonstrated. The intention of this work is to test the function of DECOS. Results in this report are illustrative and do not form any part of a radiological assessment of the site. (author)

  17. Interim report on reference biospheres for radioactive waste disposal

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dorp, F. van

    1994-10-01

    Primary criteria for repository safety are commonly expressed in terms of risk or dose, and a biosphere model is required to evaluate the corresponding assessment endpoints. Even when other indicators are used to express the safety goals, a biosphere model is still needed in order to justify those indicators. In safety or performance assessments of a repository, the uncertainties in space and time for the different components of the repository system have to be considered. For the biosphere component, prediction of future human habits, in particular, is extremely uncertain. This is especially important in the assessment of deep geological disposal, which involves very long timescales, particularly for wastes containing very long lived radionuclides. Thus, the results of biosphere modelling should not be seen as predictions, but as illustrations of the consequences that may occur, should the postulated release occur today or under other conditions implied by the underlying biosphere model assumptions. Differences in biosphere modelling approaches arise because of differences in regulations, the nature of the wastes to be disposed of, disposal site characteristics, disposal concepts and purposes of the assessment. Differences in treatment of uncertainties can also arise. For example, if doses or risks are anticipated to be far below regulatory limits, assessments may be based upon simplified and, necessarily, conservative biosphere models. At present biosphere models used to assess radioactive waste disposal show significant differences in the features, events and processes (FEPs) included or excluded. In general, the reasons for these differences have not been well documented or explained. Developments in radioecology have implications for biosphere modelling for radioactive waste disposal. In particular, after the Chernobyl accident, radioecological research has been significantly increased. Results of this research are already having and will continue to have a

  18. A simplified biosphere model for global climate studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xue, Y.; Sellers, P. J.; Kinter, J. L.; Shukla, J.

    1991-01-01

    A comprehensive analysis of the simple biosphere model (SIB) of Sellers et al. (1986) is performed in an effort to bridge the gap between the typical hydrological treatment of the land surface biosphere and the conventional general circulation model treatment, which is specified through a single parameter. Approximations are developed that stimulate the effects of reduced soil moisture more simply, maintaining the essence of the biophysical concepts utilized in SIB. Comparing the reduced parameter biosphere with those from the original formulation in a GCM and a zero-dimensional model shows the simplified version to reproduce the original results quite closely.

  19. Soil-related Input Parameters for the Biosphere Model

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    A. J. Smith

    2003-01-01

    This analysis is one of the technical reports containing documentation of the Environmental Radiation Model for Yucca Mountain Nevada (ERMYN), a biosphere model supporting the Total System Performance Assessment (TSPA) for the geologic repository at Yucca Mountain. The biosphere model is one of a series of process models supporting the Total System Performance Assessment (TSPA) for the Yucca Mountain repository. A graphical representation of the documentation hierarchy for the ERMYN biosphere model is presented in Figure 1-1. This figure shows the interrelationships among the products (i.e., analysis and model reports) developed for biosphere modeling, and the plan for development of the biosphere abstraction products for TSPA, as identified in the ''Technical Work Plan: for Biosphere Modeling and Expert Support'' (BSC 2003 [163602]). It should be noted that some documents identified in Figure 1-1 may be under development at the time this report is issued and therefore not available. This figure is included to provide an understanding of how this analysis report contributes to biosphere modeling in support of the license application, and is not intended to imply that access to the listed documents is required to understand the contents of this report. This report, ''Soil Related Input Parameters for the Biosphere Model'', is one of the five analysis reports that develop input parameters for use in the ERMYN model. This report is the source documentation for the six biosphere parameters identified in Table 1-1. ''The Biosphere Model Report'' (BSC 2003 [160699]) describes in detail the conceptual model as well as the mathematical model and its input parameters. The purpose of this analysis was to develop the biosphere model parameters needed to evaluate doses from pathways associated with the accumulation and depletion of radionuclides in the soil. These parameters support the calculation of radionuclide concentrations in soil from on-going irrigation and ash

  20. Analysis specifications for the CC3 biosphere model biotrac

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Szekely, J G; Wojciechowski, L C; Stephens, M E; Halliday, H A

    1994-12-01

    The CC3 (Canadian Concept, generation 3) model BIOTRAC (Biosphere Transport and Consequences) describes the movement in the biosphere of releases from an underground disposal vault, and the consequent radiological dose to a reference individual. Concentrations of toxic substances in different parts of the biosphere are also calculated. BIOTRAC was created specifically for the postclosure analyses of the Environmental Impact Statement that AECL is preparing on the concept for disposal of Canada`s nuclear fuel waste. The model relies on certain assumptions and constraints on the system, which are described by Davis et al. Accordingly, great care must be exercised if BIOTRAC is used for any other purpose.

  1. Induced and catalysed mineral precipitation in the deep biosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meister, Patrick

    2017-04-01

    Authigenic and early diagenetic minerals provide archives of past (bio)geochemical processes. In particular, isotopic signatures preserved in the diagenetic phases have been shown to document drastic changes of subsurface microbial activity (the deep biosphere) over geological time periods (Contreras et al., 2013; Meister, 2015). Geochemical and isotopic signatures in authigenic minerals may also document surface conditions and past climate. Nevertheless, such use of authigenic mineral phases as (bio)geochemical archives is often hampered by the insufficient understanding of mineral precipitation mechanisms. Accordingly the time, place and rate of mineral precipitation are often not well constrained. Also, element partitioning and isotopic fractionation may be modified as a result of the precipitation mechanism. Early diagenetic dolomite and quartz from drilled sequences in the Pacific were compared with adjacent porewater compositions and isotope signatures to gain fundamental insight into the factors controlling mineral precipitation. The formation of dolomite in carbonate-free organic carbon-rich ocean margin sediments (e.g. Peru Margin; Ocean Drilling Program, ODP, Site 1229; Meister et al., 2007) relies on the alkalinity-increase driven by anaerobic oxidation of methane and, perhaps, by alteration of clay minerals. In contrast, quartz is often significantly oversaturated in marine porewaters as the dissolved silica concentration is buffered by more soluble opal-A. For example, quartz does not form throughout a 400 metre thick sedimentary sequence in the Eastern Equatorial Pacific (ODP Site 1226; Meister et al., 2014) because it is kinetically inhibited. This behaviour can be explained by Ostwald's step rule, which suggests that the metastable phase forms faster. However, hard-lithified quartz readily forms where silica concentration drops sharply below opal-saturation. This violation of Ostwald's step rule must be driven by an auxiliary process, such as the

  2. Environmental Consequences of an Emerging Biosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    DesMarais, David J.

    2003-01-01

    It seems feasible to detect biological signatures ("biosignatures") in other planetary systems using the tools of astronomy. There are at least two types of biosignatures; spectral and/or polarization features created by biological products, and electromagnetic signals created by technology. The latter example of a biosignature requires SETI-like searches. This presentation addresses only spectral signatures of biological products and properties of habitable planets. Spectral biosignatures are indeed promising targets for near-term exploration. They can arise from organic constituents (e.g., vegetation) and/or inorganic products (e.g., atmospheric O2). Features originating from a planet's surface are likely to be localized in specific regions, whereas gaseous biosignatures can become globally distributed by atmospheric circulation. Biosignatures should be most abundant within environments that are, or once were, habitable. We currently believe that habitable environments necessarily provide Liquid water and biochemically useful energy. However, we do not yet fully comprehend the diversity of features that might arise within these environments that are non-biological in origin, yet mimic biosignatures. For example, atmospheres reflect the events leading to their origins as well as a host of ongoing planetary processes that might include biological activity. We are persuaded that abundant atmospheric oxygen in an environment with abundant liquid water constitutes definitive evidence of life. However, our own early biosphere thrived for more than a billion years in the absence of abundant atmospheric oxygen. The production of other, more reduced, gaseous biomarkers of "young" and/or anaerobic biospheres has not been systematically studied. Biological gas production is strongly controlled by the structure and function of microbial ecosystems. Investigations of microbial ecosystems that are close analogs of ancient communities offer multiple benefits. Such studies can

  3. NACP Site: Terrestrial Biosphere Model Output Data in Original Format

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — ABSTRACT: This data set contains the original model output data submissions from the 24 terrestrial biosphere models (TBM) that participated in the North American...

  4. NACP Site: Terrestrial Biosphere Model Output Data in Original Format

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — This data set contains the original model output data submissions from the 24 terrestrial biosphere models (TBM) that participated in the North American Carbon...

  5. Rewiring food systems to enhance human health and biosphere stewardship

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gordon, Line J.; Bignet, Victoria; Crona, Beatrice; Henriksson, Patrik J. G.; Van Holt, Tracy; Jonell, Malin; Lindahl, Therese; Troell, Max; Barthel, Stephan; Deutsch, Lisa; Folke, Carl; Jamila Haider, L.; Rockström, Johan; Queiroz, Cibele

    2017-10-01

    Food lies at the heart of both health and sustainability challenges. We use a social-ecological framework to illustrate how major changes to the volume, nutrition and safety of food systems between 1961 and today impact health and sustainability. These changes have almost halved undernutrition while doubling the proportion who are overweight. They have also resulted in reduced resilience of the biosphere, pushing four out of six analysed planetary boundaries across the safe operating space of the biosphere. Our analysis further illustrates that consumers and producers have become more distant from one another, with substantial power consolidated within a small group of key actors. Solutions include a shift from a volume-focused production system to focus on quality, nutrition, resource use efficiency, and reduced antimicrobial use. To achieve this, we need to rewire food systems in ways that enhance transparency between producers and consumers, mobilize key actors to become biosphere stewards, and re-connect people to the biosphere.

  6. Biosphere reserves – learning sites of sustainable development?

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Kušová, Drahomíra; Těšitel, Jan; Bartoš, Michael

    2008-01-01

    Roč. 14, č. 3 (2008), s. 221-234 ISSN 1211-7420 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60870520 Keywords : nature protection * learning sites * biosphere reserves * sustainable development Subject RIV: DO - Wilderness Conservation

  7. Environmental Transport Input Parameters for the Biosphere Model

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wasiolek, M. A.

    2003-01-01

    This analysis report is one of the technical reports documenting the Environmental Radiation Model for Yucca Mountain Nevada (ERMYN), a biosphere model supporting the total system performance assessment (TSPA) for the geologic repository at Yucca Mountain. A graphical representation of the documentation hierarchy for the ERMYN is presented in Figure 1-1. This figure shows relationships among the reports developed for biosphere modeling and biosphere abstraction products for the TSPA, as identified in the ''Technical Work Plan: for Biosphere Modeling and Expert Support'' (TWP) (BSC 2003 [163602]). Some documents in Figure 1-1 may be under development and not available when this report is issued. This figure provides an understanding of how this report contributes to biosphere modeling in support of the license application (LA), but access to the listed documents is not required to understand the contents of this report. This report is one of the reports that develops input parameter values for the biosphere model. The ''Biosphere Model Report'' (BSC 2003 [160699]) describes the conceptual model, the mathematical model, and the input parameters. The purpose of this analysis is to develop biosphere model parameter values related to radionuclide transport and accumulation in the environment. These parameters support calculations of radionuclide concentrations in the environmental media (e.g., soil, crops, animal products, and air) resulting from a given radionuclide concentration at the source of contamination (i.e., either in groundwater or volcanic ash). The analysis was performed in accordance with the TWP (BSC 2003 [163602]). This analysis develops values of parameters associated with many features, events, and processes (FEPs) applicable to the reference biosphere (DTN: M00303SEPFEPS2.000 [162452]), which are addressed in the biosphere model (BSC 2003 [160699]). The treatment of these FEPs is described in BSC (2003 [160699], Section 6.2). Parameter values

  8. Environmental Transport Input Parameters for the Biosphere Model

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    M. A. Wasiolek

    2003-06-27

    This analysis report is one of the technical reports documenting the Environmental Radiation Model for Yucca Mountain Nevada (ERMYN), a biosphere model supporting the total system performance assessment (TSPA) for the geologic repository at Yucca Mountain. A graphical representation of the documentation hierarchy for the ERMYN is presented in Figure 1-1. This figure shows relationships among the reports developed for biosphere modeling and biosphere abstraction products for the TSPA, as identified in the ''Technical Work Plan: for Biosphere Modeling and Expert Support'' (TWP) (BSC 2003 [163602]). Some documents in Figure 1-1 may be under development and not available when this report is issued. This figure provides an understanding of how this report contributes to biosphere modeling in support of the license application (LA), but access to the listed documents is not required to understand the contents of this report. This report is one of the reports that develops input parameter values for the biosphere model. The ''Biosphere Model Report'' (BSC 2003 [160699]) describes the conceptual model, the mathematical model, and the input parameters. The purpose of this analysis is to develop biosphere model parameter values related to radionuclide transport and accumulation in the environment. These parameters support calculations of radionuclide concentrations in the environmental media (e.g., soil, crops, animal products, and air) resulting from a given radionuclide concentration at the source of contamination (i.e., either in groundwater or volcanic ash). The analysis was performed in accordance with the TWP (BSC 2003 [163602]). This analysis develops values of parameters associated with many features, events, and processes (FEPs) applicable to the reference biosphere (DTN: M00303SEPFEPS2.000 [162452]), which are addressed in the biosphere model (BSC 2003 [160699]). The treatment of these FEPs is described in BSC (2003 [160699

  9. Performance Indicators for Uranium Bioremediation in the Subsurface: Basis and Assessment

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Long, Philip E. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Yabusaki, Steven B. [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States)

    2006-12-29

    The purpose of this letter report is to identify performance indicators for in situ engineered bioremediation of subsurface uranium (U) contamination. This report focuses on in situ treatment of groundwater by biostimulation of extant in situ microbial populations (see http://128.3.7.51/NABIR/generalinfo/primers_guides/03_NABIR_primer.pdf for background information on bioremediation of metals and radionuclides). The treatment process involves amendment of the subsurface with an electron donor such as acetate, lactate, ethanol or other organic compound such that in situ microorganisms mediate the reduction of U(VI) to U(IV). U(VI) precipitates as uraninite or other insoluble U phase. Uranium is thus immobilized in place by such processes and is subject to reoxidation that may remobilize the reduced uranium. Related processes include augmenting the extant subsurface microbial populations, addition of electron acceptors, and introduction of chemically reducing materials such as zero-valent Fe. While metrics for such processes may be similar to those for in situ biostimulation, these related processes are not directly in the scope of this letter report.

  10. Characteristics of the Receptor for the Biosphere Model

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    M.A. Wasiolek

    2005-01-01

    This analysis report is one of a series of technical reports that document the Environmental Radiation Model for Yucca Mountain, Nevada (ERMYN), a biosphere model supporting the total system performance assessment (TSPA) for the geologic repository at Yucca Mountain. This report is one of the five biosphere reports that develop input parameter values for the biosphere model. The ''Biosphere Model Report'' (BSC 2004 [DIRS 169460]) describes the conceptual model, as well as the mathematical model and its input parameters. Figure 1-1 is a graphical representation of the documentation hierarchy for the ERMYN. This figure shows relationships among the products (i.e., scientific analyses and model reports) developed for biosphere modeling and biosphere abstraction products for TSPA, as identified in the ''Technical Work Plan for Biosphere Modeling and Expert Support'' (BSC 2005 [DIRS 172782]). The purpose of this analysis report is to define values for biosphere model parameters that are related to the dietary, lifestyle, and dosimetric characteristics of the receptor. The biosphere model, consistent with the licensing rule at 10 CFR Part 63 [DIRS 173164], uses a hypothetical person called the reasonably maximally exposed individual (RMEI) to represent the potentially exposed population. The parameters that define the RMEI are based on the behaviors and characteristics of the residents of the unincorporated town of Amargosa Valley, consistent with the requirements of 10 CFR 63.312 [DIRS 173164]. The output of this report is used as direct input in the two analyses identified in Figure 1-1 that calculate the values of biosphere dose conversion factors (BDCFs) for the groundwater and volcanic ash exposure scenarios. The parameter values developed in this report are reflected in the TSPA through the BDCFs. The analysis was performed in accordance with LP-SIII.9Q-BSC, ''Scientific Analyses'', and the technical work plan (BSC 2005 [DIRS 172782]). The scope of the revision was

  11. Inhalation Exposure Input Parameters for the Biosphere Model

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    M. A. Wasiolek

    2003-09-24

    This analysis is one of the nine reports that support the Environmental Radiation Model for Yucca Mountain Nevada (ERMYN) biosphere model. The ''Biosphere Model Report'' (BSC 2003a) describes in detail the conceptual model as well as the mathematical model and its input parameters. This report documents a set of input parameters for the biosphere model, and supports the use of the model to develop biosphere dose conversion factors (BDCFs). The biosphere model is one of a series of process models supporting the Total System Performance Assessment (TSPA) for a Yucca Mountain repository. This report, ''Inhalation Exposure Input Parameters for the Biosphere Model'', is one of the five reports that develop input parameters for the biosphere model. A graphical representation of the documentation hierarchy for the ERMYN is presented in Figure 1-1. This figure shows the interrelationships among the products (i.e., analysis and model reports) developed for biosphere modeling, and the plan for development of the biosphere abstraction products for TSPA, as identified in the ''Technical Work Plan: for Biosphere Modeling and Expert Support'' (BSC 2003b). It should be noted that some documents identified in Figure 1-1 may be under development at the time this report is issued and therefore not available at that time. This figure is included to provide an understanding of how this analysis report contributes to biosphere modeling in support of the license application, and is not intended to imply that access to the listed documents is required to understand the contents of this analysis report. This analysis report defines and justifies values of mass loading, which is the total mass concentration of resuspended particles (e.g., dust, ash) in a volume of air. Measurements of mass loading are used in the air submodel of ERMYN to calculate concentrations of radionuclides in air surrounding crops and concentrations in air

  12. Inhalation Exposure Input Parameters for the Biosphere Model

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    M. A. Wasiolek

    2003-01-01

    This analysis is one of the nine reports that support the Environmental Radiation Model for Yucca Mountain Nevada (ERMYN) biosphere model. The ''Biosphere Model Report'' (BSC 2003a) describes in detail the conceptual model as well as the mathematical model and its input parameters. This report documents a set of input parameters for the biosphere model, and supports the use of the model to develop biosphere dose conversion factors (BDCFs). The biosphere model is one of a series of process models supporting the Total System Performance Assessment (TSPA) for a Yucca Mountain repository. This report, ''Inhalation Exposure Input Parameters for the Biosphere Model'', is one of the five reports that develop input parameters for the biosphere model. A graphical representation of the documentation hierarchy for the ERMYN is presented in Figure 1-1. This figure shows the interrelationships among the products (i.e., analysis and model reports) developed for biosphere modeling, and the plan for development of the biosphere abstraction products for TSPA, as identified in the ''Technical Work Plan: for Biosphere Modeling and Expert Support'' (BSC 2003b). It should be noted that some documents identified in Figure 1-1 may be under development at the time this report is issued and therefore not available at that time. This figure is included to provide an understanding of how this analysis report contributes to biosphere modeling in support of the license application, and is not intended to imply that access to the listed documents is required to understand the contents of this analysis report. This analysis report defines and justifies values of mass loading, which is the total mass concentration of resuspended particles (e.g., dust, ash) in a volume of air. Measurements of mass loading are used in the air submodel of ERMYN to calculate concentrations of radionuclides in air surrounding crops and concentrations in air inhaled by a receptor. Concentrations in air to which the

  13. Characteristics of the Receptor for the Biosphere Model

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    M.A. Wasiolek

    2005-04-05

    This analysis report is one of a series of technical reports that document the Environmental Radiation Model for Yucca Mountain, Nevada (ERMYN), a biosphere model supporting the total system performance assessment (TSPA) for the geologic repository at Yucca Mountain. This report is one of the five biosphere reports that develop input parameter values for the biosphere model. The ''Biosphere Model Report'' (BSC 2004 [DIRS 169460]) describes the conceptual model, as well as the mathematical model and its input parameters. Figure 1-1 is a graphical representation of the documentation hierarchy for the ERMYN. This figure shows relationships among the products (i.e., scientific analyses and model reports) developed for biosphere modeling and biosphere abstraction products for TSPA, as identified in the ''Technical Work Plan for Biosphere Modeling and Expert Support'' (BSC 2005 [DIRS 172782]). The purpose of this analysis report is to define values for biosphere model parameters that are related to the dietary, lifestyle, and dosimetric characteristics of the receptor. The biosphere model, consistent with the licensing rule at 10 CFR Part 63 [DIRS 173164], uses a hypothetical person called the reasonably maximally exposed individual (RMEI) to represent the potentially exposed population. The parameters that define the RMEI are based on the behaviors and characteristics of the residents of the unincorporated town of Amargosa Valley, consistent with the requirements of 10 CFR 63.312 [DIRS 173164]. The output of this report is used as direct input in the two analyses identified in Figure 1-1 that calculate the values of biosphere dose conversion factors (BDCFs) for the groundwater and volcanic ash exposure scenarios. The parameter values developed in this report are reflected in the TSPA through the BDCFs. The analysis was performed in accordance with LP-SIII.9Q-BSC, ''Scientific Analyses'', and the technical work

  14. Stable, geochemically mediated biospheres in the Deep Mine Microbial Observatory, SD, USA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Osburn, M. R.; Casar, C. P.; Kruger, B.; Flynn, T. M.

    2017-12-01

    The terrestrial subsurface is a vast reservoir of life, hosting diverse microbial ecosystems with varying levels of connectivity to surface inputs. Understanding long term ecosystem dynamics within the subsurface biosphere is very challenging due to limitations in accessibility, sample availability, and slow microbial growth rates. The establishment of the Deep Mine Microbial Observatory (DeMMO) at the Sanford Underground Research Facility, SD, USA has allowed for bimonthly sampling for nearly two years at six sites spanning 250 to 1500 m below the surface. Here we present a time-resolved analysis of the geomicrobiology of the six DeMMO sites, which have been created from legacy mine boreholes modified to allow for controlled sampling. Our interdisciplinary approach includes analysis of passively draining fracture fluid for aqueous and gas geochemistry, DNA sequencing, microscopy, and isotopic measurements of organic and inorganic substrates. Fluid geochemistry varies significantly between sites, but is relatively stable over time for a given site, even through significant external perturbations such as drilling and installation of permanent sampling devices into the boreholes. The fluid-hosted microbial diversity follows these trends, with consistent populations present at each site through time, even through drilling events. For instance, the shallowest site (DeMMO 1) consistently hosts >30% uncharacterized phyla and >25% Omnitrophica whereas the deepest site (DeMMO 6) is dominated by Firmicutes and Bacterioidetes. Microbial diversity appears to respond to the availability of energy sources such as organic carbon, sulfate, sulfide, hydrogen, and iron. Carbon isotopic measurements reveal closed system behavior with significant recycling of organic carbon into the DIC pool. Together these observations suggest DeMMO hosts isolated subsurface microbial populations adapted to local geochemistry that are stable on yearlong timescales.

  15. Post-closure performance assessment treatment of the biosphere

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Broderick, M A [UK Nirex Ltd., Harwell, Oxfordshire (United Kingdom); Egan, M J [AEA Technology, Risley, Cheshire (United Kingdom); Thorne, M C [Electrowatt, Horsham, Sussex (United Kingdom); Williams, J A [AEA Technology, Risley, Cheshire (United Kingdom)

    1996-07-01

    The Nirex strategy for radioactive waste disposal is based on a system of engineered and natural barriers, providing long-term isolation of the waste from those parts of the environment that are in contact with or readily available for use by humans (i.e. the biosphere). Even so, there remains the possibility that, on a timescale of thousands to tens of thousands of years, small quantities of poorly-sorbed, long-lived radionuclides may be released from the engineered disposal system, ultimately to emerge into the biosphere. Biosphere models are used in post-closure performance assessments to quantify the competing effects of dilution and accumulation processes on radionuclide concentrations in the accessible environment. Understanding biosphere processes and their time dependence is necessary not only to determine the radiological impact of possible future releases, but also to characterise the dynamics of transport in groundwater and the location, duration and extent of any such releases. Nirex is developing a new biosphere model for use in post-closure radiological assessments for the proposed Sellafield repository. A compartment modelling approach has been adopted, as in studies performed previously, but the system will be dynamic, allowing changes with time in both the properties of compartments and the transfers between compartments. The transport model considers both mass transport within the biosphere and the migration of radionuclides, thereby ensuring that a self-consistent description of the biosphere, in a spatially-extensive domain is maintained. The above approach is designed to link the assessment models used by the Nirex assessment team more closely into the Nirex biosphere research programme than has hitherto been possible with time-invariant assessment models. (author)

  16. Post-closure performance assessment treatment of the biosphere

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Broderick, M.A.; Egan, M.J.; Thorne, M.C.; Williams, J.A.

    1996-01-01

    The Nirex strategy for radioactive waste disposal is based on a system of engineered and natural barriers, providing long-term isolation of the waste from those parts of the environment that are in contact with or readily available for use by humans (i.e. the biosphere). Even so, there remains the possibility that, on a timescale of thousands to tens of thousands of years, small quantities of poorly-sorbed, long-lived radionuclides may be released from the engineered disposal system, ultimately to emerge into the biosphere. Biosphere models are used in post-closure performance assessments to quantify the competing effects of dilution and accumulation processes on radionuclide concentrations in the accessible environment. Understanding biosphere processes and their time dependence is necessary not only to determine the radiological impact of possible future releases, but also to characterise the dynamics of transport in groundwater and the location, duration and extent of any such releases. Nirex is developing a new biosphere model for use in post-closure radiological assessments for the proposed Sellafield repository. A compartment modelling approach has been adopted, as in studies performed previously, but the system will be dynamic, allowing changes with time in both the properties of compartments and the transfers between compartments. The transport model considers both mass transport within the biosphere and the migration of radionuclides, thereby ensuring that a self-consistent description of the biosphere, in a spatially-extensive domain is maintained. The above approach is designed to link the assessment models used by the Nirex assessment team more closely into the Nirex biosphere research programme than has hitherto been possible with time-invariant assessment models. (author)

  17. Some viewpoints on reference biospheres in Finnish performance assessments

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rasilainen, K.; Kattilakoski, E.; Suolanen, V.; Vieno, T.; Vuori, S.

    2002-01-01

    Viewpoints are presented concerning biosphere studies in performance assessments of nuclear waste disposal. The points are based on experiences from several Finnish performance assessments. The latest performance assessment for spent fuel disposal, TILA-99, was considered in the Decision in Principle process for the site selection of the repository. The points given are also based on experiences from participation in international projects dealing with biosphere modelling, for instance BIOMOVS and BIOMASS. (author)

  18. Liquid Water in the Extremely Shallow Martian Subsurface

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pavlov, A.; Shivak, J. N.

    2012-01-01

    Availability of liquid water is one of the major constraints for the potential Martian biosphere. Although liquid water is unstable on the surface of Mars due to low atmospheric pressures, it has been suggested that liquid films of water could be present in the Martian soil. Here we explored a possibility of the liquid water formation in the extremely shallow (1-3 cm) subsurface layer under low atmospheric pressures (0.1-10 mbar) and low ("Martian") surface temperatures (approx.-50 C-0 C). We used a new Goddard Martian simulation chamber to demonstrate that even in the clean frozen soil with temperatures as low as -25C the amount of mobile water can reach several percents. We also showed that during brief periods of simulated daylight warming the shallow subsurface ice sublimates, the water vapor diffuses through porous surface layer of soil temporarily producing supersaturated conditions in the soil, which leads to the formation of additional liquid water. Our results suggest that despite cold temperatures and low atmospheric pressures, Martian soil just several cm below the surface can be habitable.

  19. Spanish methodological approach for biosphere assessment of radioactive waste disposal

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Agueero, A.; Pinedo, P.; Cancio, D.; Simon, I.; Moraleda, M.; Perez-Sanchez, D.; Trueba, C.

    2007-01-01

    The development of radioactive waste disposal facilities requires implementation of measures that will afford protection of human health and the environment over a specific temporal frame that depends on the characteristics of the wastes. The repository design is based on a multi-barrier system: (i) the near-field or engineered barrier, (ii) far-field or geological barrier and (iii) the biosphere system. Here, the focus is on the analysis of this last system, the biosphere. A description is provided of conceptual developments, methodological aspects and software tools used to develop the Biosphere Assessment Methodology in the context of high-level waste (HLW) disposal facilities in Spain. This methodology is based on the BIOMASS 'Reference Biospheres Methodology' and provides a logical and systematic approach with supplementary documentation that helps to support the decisions necessary for model development. It follows a five-stage approach, such that a coherent biosphere system description and the corresponding conceptual, mathematical and numerical models can be built. A discussion on the improvements implemented through application of the methodology to case studies in international and national projects is included. Some facets of this methodological approach still require further consideration, principally an enhanced integration of climatology, geography and ecology into models considering evolution of the environment, some aspects of the interface between the geosphere and biosphere, and an accurate quantification of environmental change processes and rates

  20. Spanish methodological approach for biosphere assessment of radioactive waste disposal.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Agüero, A; Pinedo, P; Cancio, D; Simón, I; Moraleda, M; Pérez-Sánchez, D; Trueba, C

    2007-10-01

    The development of radioactive waste disposal facilities requires implementation of measures that will afford protection of human health and the environment over a specific temporal frame that depends on the characteristics of the wastes. The repository design is based on a multi-barrier system: (i) the near-field or engineered barrier, (ii) far-field or geological barrier and (iii) the biosphere system. Here, the focus is on the analysis of this last system, the biosphere. A description is provided of conceptual developments, methodological aspects and software tools used to develop the Biosphere Assessment Methodology in the context of high-level waste (HLW) disposal facilities in Spain. This methodology is based on the BIOMASS "Reference Biospheres Methodology" and provides a logical and systematic approach with supplementary documentation that helps to support the decisions necessary for model development. It follows a five-stage approach, such that a coherent biosphere system description and the corresponding conceptual, mathematical and numerical models can be built. A discussion on the improvements implemented through application of the methodology to case studies in international and national projects is included. Some facets of this methodological approach still require further consideration, principally an enhanced integration of climatology, geography and ecology into models considering evolution of the environment, some aspects of the interface between the geosphere and biosphere, and an accurate quantification of environmental change processes and rates.

  1. Agricultural and Environmental Input Parameters for the Biosphere Model

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    K. Rasmuson; K. Rautenstrauch

    2004-09-14

    This analysis is one of 10 technical reports that support the Environmental Radiation Model for Yucca Mountain Nevada (ERMYN) (i.e., the biosphere model). It documents development of agricultural and environmental input parameters for the biosphere model, and supports the use of the model to develop biosphere dose conversion factors (BDCFs). The biosphere model is one of a series of process models supporting the total system performance assessment (TSPA) for the repository at Yucca Mountain. The ERMYN provides the TSPA with the capability to perform dose assessments. A graphical representation of the documentation hierarchy for the ERMYN is presented in Figure 1-1. This figure shows the interrelationships between the major activities and their products (the analysis and model reports) that were planned in ''Technical Work Plan for Biosphere Modeling and Expert Support'' (BSC 2004 [DIRS 169573]). The ''Biosphere Model Report'' (BSC 2004 [DIRS 169460]) describes the ERMYN and its input parameters.

  2. A Biosphere model for use in SITE-94

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Barrdahl, R.

    1996-08-01

    A simple biosphere model has been designed for use in the SKI Project SITE-94 related to a hypothetical repository for spent nuclear fuel on the island of Aespoe. The model provides results in terms of radiation dose per 1 Bq/year, unless otherwise indicated, and results will thus have to be scaled with actual flux of radionuclides per year entering the primary biosphere recipients. The model does not include radioactive decay as there is assumed no delay in the model system, except for where explicitly mentioned. Specifically, no radioactive transitions resulting in daughter nuclides are considered. Calculated yearly individual and population committed (50 years) radiation doses to man are expressed as mSv/h, under the assumption of a flux of one Bq/year into the primary biosphere recipient. Calculated radiation doses resulting from the present biosphere model are hypothetical, and should under no circumstances be considered as real. Neither should they be used as quantitative information for decision purposes. The biosphere model is of a rough and primitive character and its precision, relative to the real biosphere in the surroundings of Aespoe is envisaged to be several orders of magnitude. 8 refs

  3. 'Reference Biospheres' for solid radioactive waste disposal: the BIOMASS Methodology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Crossland, I.G.; Pinedo, P.; Kessler, J.H.; Torres-Vidal, C.; Walters, B.

    2005-01-01

    The BIOMASS Theme 1 project has developed a methodology for the logical and defensible construction of 'assessment biospheres': mathematical representations of biospheres used in the total system performance assessment of radioactive waste disposal. The BIOMASS Methodology provides a systematic approach to decision making, including decisions on how to address biosphere change. The BIOMASS Methodology was developed through consultation and collaboration with many relevant organisations, including regulators, operators and a variety of independent experts. It has been developed to be practical and to be consistent with recommendations from ICRP and IAEA on radiation protection in the context of the disposal of long-lived solid radioactive wastes. The five main steps in the methodology are described in this paper. The importance of a clear assessment context, to clarify intentions and to support a coherent biosphere assessment process within an overall repository performance assessment, is strongly emphasised. A well described assessment context is an important tool for ensuring consistency across the performance assessment as a whole. The use of interaction matrices has been found to be helpful in clarifying the interactions between different habitats within the biosphere system and the significant radionuclide transfer pathways within the biosphere system. Matrices also provide a useful means of checking for consistency

  4. Subsurface Geotechnical Parameters Report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rigby, D.; Mrugala, M.; Shideler, G.; Davidsavor, T.; Leem, J.; Buesch, D.; Sun, Y.; Potyondy, D.; Christianson, M.

    2003-01-01

    The Yucca Mountain Project is entering a the license application (LA) stage in its mission to develop the nation's first underground nuclear waste repository. After a number of years of gathering data related to site characterization, including activities ranging from laboratory and site investigations, to numerical modeling of processes associated with conditions to be encountered in the future repository, the Project is realigning its activities towards the License Application preparation. At the current stage, the major efforts are directed at translating the results of scientific investigations into sets of data needed to support the design, and to fulfill the licensing requirements and the repository design activities. This document addresses the program need to address specific technical questions so that an assessment can be made about the suitability and adequacy of data to license and construct a repository at the Yucca Mountain Site. In July 2002, the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) published an Integrated Issue Resolution Status Report (NRC 2002). Included in this report were the Repository Design and Thermal-Mechanical Effects (RDTME) Key Technical Issues (KTI). Geotechnical agreements were formulated to resolve a number of KTI subissues, in particular, RDTME KTIs 3.04, 3.05, 3.07, and 3.19 relate to the physical, thermal and mechanical properties of the host rock (NRC 2002, pp. 2.1.1-28, 2.1.7-10 to 2.1.7-21, A-17, A-18, and A-20). The purpose of the Subsurface Geotechnical Parameters Report is to present an accounting of current geotechnical information that will help resolve KTI subissues and some other project needs. The report analyzes and summarizes available qualified geotechnical data. It evaluates the sufficiency and quality of existing data to support engineering design and performance assessment. In addition, the corroborative data obtained from tests performed by a number of research organizations is presented to reinforce

  5. Subsurface Geotechnical Parameters Report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    D. Rigby; M. Mrugala; G. Shideler; T. Davidsavor; J. Leem; D. Buesch; Y. Sun; D. Potyondy; M. Christianson

    2003-12-17

    The Yucca Mountain Project is entering a the license application (LA) stage in its mission to develop the nation's first underground nuclear waste repository. After a number of years of gathering data related to site characterization, including activities ranging from laboratory and site investigations, to numerical modeling of processes associated with conditions to be encountered in the future repository, the Project is realigning its activities towards the License Application preparation. At the current stage, the major efforts are directed at translating the results of scientific investigations into sets of data needed to support the design, and to fulfill the licensing requirements and the repository design activities. This document addresses the program need to address specific technical questions so that an assessment can be made about the suitability and adequacy of data to license and construct a repository at the Yucca Mountain Site. In July 2002, the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) published an Integrated Issue Resolution Status Report (NRC 2002). Included in this report were the Repository Design and Thermal-Mechanical Effects (RDTME) Key Technical Issues (KTI). Geotechnical agreements were formulated to resolve a number of KTI subissues, in particular, RDTME KTIs 3.04, 3.05, 3.07, and 3.19 relate to the physical, thermal and mechanical properties of the host rock (NRC 2002, pp. 2.1.1-28, 2.1.7-10 to 2.1.7-21, A-17, A-18, and A-20). The purpose of the Subsurface Geotechnical Parameters Report is to present an accounting of current geotechnical information that will help resolve KTI subissues and some other project needs. The report analyzes and summarizes available qualified geotechnical data. It evaluates the sufficiency and quality of existing data to support engineering design and performance assessment. In addition, the corroborative data obtained from tests performed by a number of research organizations is presented to reinforce

  6. Desulfotomaculum spp. and related Gram-positive sulfate-reducing bacteria in deep subsurface environments.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas eAullo

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available Gram-positive spore-forming sulfate reducers and particularly members of the genus Desulfotomaculum are commonly found in the subsurface biosphere by culture based and molecular approaches. Due to their metabolic versatility and their ability to persist as endospores. Desulfotomaculum spp. are well adapted for colonizing environments through a slow sedimentation process. Because of their ability to grow autotrophically (H2/CO2 and produce sulfide or acetate, these microorganisms may play key roles in deep lithoautotrophic microbial communities. Available data about Desulfotomaculum spp. and related species from studies carried out from deep freshwater lakes, marine sediments, oligotrophic and organic rich deep geological settings are discussed in this review.

  7. Posiva biosphere assessment: Revised structure and status 2006

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ikonen, A.

    2006-12-01

    Posiva's Safety Case is organised into a portfolio consisting of ten main component reports of which the Biosphere Assessment is one. To better facilitate the iterative assessment process by different task groups, the Biosphere Assessment is now organised into a sub-portfolio having folders for reports on specific topics: Site and evolution describes the past, present and future conditions of the surface system of the Olkiluoto site; Biosphere processes contain descriptions of processes prevailing at the site now and in future; Module Descriptions document the radionuclide transport models; Biosphere Assessment Data reports the parameter data used in the assessment with full references to their origin; Cases and variants provide mainly the simulated concentrations in the environmental media as a part of the actual assessment; Exposures of total environment draw conclusions on the dose and effect implications on the basis of the concentrations provided in Cases and variants. Finally, the biosphere assessment is consolidated in the summary report providing the needed high-level information to the main Safety Case and referring to the individual background reports for the details. In addition to the specific folders of the Biosphere Assessment Portfolio, there are also a number of overlapping issues to be considered throughout the assessment. Most important of those are the handling of the geosphere-biosphere interface and the future human activities, and the thorough knowledge quality assessment, the last of which provides tools to evaluate the overall uncertainty and consistency of and confidence to the assessment. In this report, the current strategy of modelling the different aspects of the biosphere from the site investigations to the doses is discussed, and the Biosphere Assessment Portfolio is introduced. Requirements and recommendations are given to the individual folders and/or reports to steer the extensive biosphere modelling and assessment work towards a

  8. Biosphere reserves in action: Case studies of the American experience

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    None

    1995-06-26

    For nearly 20 years, biosphere reserves have offered a unique framework for building the knowledge, skills, and attitudes required for conservation and sustainable use of ecosystems. The 12 case studies in this volume chronicle many of the cooperative efforts to implement the biosphere reserve concept in the United States. Considered together, these efforts involve more than 20 types of protected areas, and the participation of all levels of government, and many private organizations, academic institutions, citizens groups, and individuals. Biosphere reserves are multi-purpose areas that are nominated by the national committee of the Man and the Biosphere Program (MAB) and designated by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) to serve as demonstration areas for cooperation in building harmonious relationships between human activities and the conservation of ecosystems and biological diversity. Each biosphere reserve exemplifies the characteristic ecosystems of one of the worlds biogeographical regions. It is a land or coas%arine area involving human communities as integral components and including resources managed for objectives ranging from complete protection to intensive, yet sustainable development. A biosphere reserve is envisioned as a regional ''landscape for learning'' in which monitoring, research, education, and training are encouraged to support sustainable conservation of natural and managed ecosystems. It is a framework for regional cooperation involving government decisionmakers, scientists, resource managers, private organizations and local people (i.e., the biosphere reserve ''stakeholders''). Finally, each biosphere reserve is part of a global network for sharing information and experience to help address complex problems of conservation and development. The 12 case studies presented in this report represent only a few of the possible evolutions of a biosphere reserve in

  9. Relationship between foramen magnum position and locomotion in extant and extinct hominoids.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Neaux, Dimitri; Bienvenu, Thibaut; Guy, Franck; Daver, Guillaume; Sansalone, Gabriele; Ledogar, Justin A; Rae, Todd C; Wroe, Stephen; Brunet, Michel

    2017-12-01

    From the Miocene Sahelanthropus tchadensis to Pleistocene Homo sapiens, hominins are characterized by a derived anterior position of the foramen magnum relative to basicranial structures. It has been previously suggested that the anterior position of the foramen magnum in hominins is related to bipedal locomotor behavior. Yet, the functional relationship between foramen magnum position and bipedal locomotion remains unclear. Recent studies, using ratios based on cranial linear measurements, have found a link between the anterior position of the foramen magnum and bipedalism in several mammalian clades: marsupials, rodents, and primates. In the present study, we compute these ratios in a sample including a more comprehensive dataset of extant hominoids and fossil hominins. First, we verify if the values of ratios can distinguish extant humans from apes. Then, we test whether extinct hominins can be distinguished from non-bipedal extant hominoids. Finally, we assess if the studied ratios are effective predictors of bipedal behavior by testing if they mainly relate to variation in foramen magnum position rather than changes in other cranial structures. Our results confirm that the ratios discriminate between extant bipeds and non-bipeds. However, the only ratio clearly discriminating between fossil hominins and other extant apes is that which only includes basicranial structures. We show that a large proportion of the interspecific variation in the other ratios relates to changes in facial, rather than basicranial, structures. In this context, we advocate the use of measurements based only on basicranial structures when assessing the relationship between foramen magnum position and bipedalism in future studies. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. SUBSURFACE CONSTRUCTION AND DEVELOPMENT ANALYSIS

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    N.E. Kramer

    1998-01-01

    The purpose of this analysis is to identify appropriate construction methods and develop a feasible approach for construction and development of the repository subsurface facilities. The objective of this analysis is to support development of the subsurface repository layout for License Application (LA) design. The scope of the analysis for construction and development of the subsurface Repository facilities covers: (1) Excavation methods, including application of knowledge gained from construction of the Exploratory Studies Facility (ESF). (2) Muck removal from excavation headings to the surface. This task will examine ways of preventing interference with other subsurface construction activities. (3) The logistics and equipment for the construction and development rail haulage systems. (4) Impact of ground support installation on excavation and other construction activities. (5) Examination of how drift mapping will be accomplished. (6) Men and materials handling. (7) Installation and removal of construction utilities and ventilation systems. (8) Equipping and finishing of the emplacement drift mains and access ramps to fulfill waste emplacement operational needs. (9) Emplacement drift and access mains and ramps commissioning prior to handover for emplacement operations. (10) Examination of ways to structure the contracts for construction of the repository. (11) Discussion of different construction schemes and how to minimize the schedule risks implicit in those schemes. (12) Surface facilities needed for subsurface construction activities

  11. Program overview: Subsurface science program

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1994-03-01

    The OHER Subsurface Science Program is DOE's core basic research program concerned with subsoils and groundwater. These practices have resulted in contamination by mixtures of organic chemicals, inorganic chemicals, and radionuclides. A primary long-term goal is to provide a foundation of knowledge that will lead to the reduction of environmental risks and to cost-effective cleanup strategies. Since the Program was initiated in 1985, a substantial amount of research in hydrogeology, subsurface microbiology, and the geochemistry of organically complexed radionuclides has been completed, leading to a better understanding of contaminant transport in groundwater and to new insights into microbial distribution and function in the subsurface environments. The Subsurface Science Program focuses on achieving long-term scientific advances that will assist DOE in the following key areas: providing the scientific basis for innovative in situ remediation technologies that are based on a concept of decontamination through benign manipulation of natural systems; understanding the complex mechanisms and process interactions that occur in the subsurface; determining the influence of chemical and geochemical-microbial processes on co-contaminant mobility to reduce environmental risks; improving predictions of contaminant transport that draw on fundamental knowledge of contaminant behavior in the presence of physical and chemical heterogeneities to improve cleanup effectiveness and to predict environmental risks

  12. The Biosphere Under Potential Paris Outcomes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ostberg, Sebastian; Boysen, Lena R.; Schaphoff, Sibyll; Lucht, Wolfgang; Gerten, Dieter

    2018-01-01

    Rapid economic and population growth over the last centuries have started to push the Earth out of its Holocene state into the Anthropocene. In this new era, ecosystems across the globe face mounting dual pressure from human land use change (LUC) and climate change (CC). With the Paris Agreement, the international community has committed to holding global warming below 2°C above preindustrial levels, yet current pledges by countries to reduce greenhouse gas emissions appear insufficient to achieve that goal. At the same time, the sustainable development goals strive to reduce inequalities between countries and provide sufficient food, feed, and clean energy to a growing world population likely to reach more than 9 billion by 2050. Here, we present a macro-scale analysis of the projected impacts of both CC and LUC on the terrestrial biosphere over the 21st century using the Representative Concentration Pathways (RCPs) to illustrate possible trajectories following the Paris Agreement. We find that CC may cause major impacts in landscapes covering between 16% and 65% of the global ice-free land surface by the end of the century, depending on the success or failure of achieving the Paris goal. Accounting for LUC impacts in addition, this number increases to 38%-80%. Thus, CC will likely replace LUC as the major driver of ecosystem change unless global warming can be limited to well below 2°C. We also find a substantial risk that impacts of agricultural expansion may offset some of the benefits of ambitious climate protection for ecosystems.

  13. The terrestrial biosphere in the SFR region

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jerling, L; Isaeus, M [Stockholm Univ. (Sweden). Dept. of Botany; Lanneck, J [Stockholm Univ. (Sweden). Dept. of Physical Geography; Lindborg, T; Schueldt, R [Danish Nature Council, Copenhagen (Denmark)

    2001-03-01

    This report is a part of the SKB project 'SAFE' (Safety Assessment of the Final Repository of Radioactive Operational Waste). The aim of project SAFE is to update the previous safety analysis of SFR-1.SFR-1 is a facility for disposal of low and intermediate level radioactive waste, which is situated in bedrock beneath the Baltic Sea, one km off the coast near the Forsmark nuclear power plant in Northern Uppland. A part of the SAFE-analysis aims at analysing the transport of radionuclides in the ecosystems.To do so one has to build a model that includes a large amount of information concerning the biosphere.The first step is to collect and compile descriptions of the biosphere.This report is a first attempt to characterise the terrestrial environment of the SFR area of Forsmark. In the first part of the report the terrestrial environment, land class distribution and production of the area is described. The primary production in different terrestrial ecosystems is estimated for a model area in the Forsmark region. The estimations are based on the actual land class distribution and the values for the total primary production (d.w. above ground biomass)and the amount carbon produced, presented as g/m{sup 2} for each land class respectively. An important aspect of the biosphere is the vegetation and its development. The future development of vegetation is of interest since production,decomposition and thus storage of organic material, vary strongly among vegetation types and this has strong implications for the transport of radionuclides.Therefore an attempt to describe the development of terrestrial vegetation has been made in the second part. Any prediction of future vegetation is based on knowledge of the past together with premises for the future development.The predictions made, thus, becomes marred with errors enforced by the assumptions and incomplete information of the past. The assumptions made for the predictions in this report are crude and results in a

  14. The terrestrial biosphere in the SFR region

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jerling, L.; Isaeus, M.

    2001-03-01

    This report is a part of the SKB project 'SAFE' (Safety Assessment of the Final Repository of Radioactive Operational Waste). The aim of project SAFE is to update the previous safety analysis of SFR-1.SFR-1 is a facility for disposal of low and intermediate level radioactive waste, which is situated in bedrock beneath the Baltic Sea, one km off the coast near the Forsmark nuclear power plant in Northern Uppland. A part of the SAFE-analysis aims at analysing the transport of radionuclides in the ecosystems.To do so one has to build a model that includes a large amount of information concerning the biosphere.The first step is to collect and compile descriptions of the biosphere.This report is a first attempt to characterise the terrestrial environment of the SFR area of Forsmark. In the first part of the report the terrestrial environment, land class distribution and production of the area is described. The primary production in different terrestrial ecosystems is estimated for a model area in the Forsmark region. The estimations are based on the actual land class distribution and the values for the total primary production (d.w. above ground biomass)and the amount carbon produced, presented as g/m 2 for each land class respectively. An important aspect of the biosphere is the vegetation and its development. The future development of vegetation is of interest since production,decomposition and thus storage of organic material, vary strongly among vegetation types and this has strong implications for the transport of radionuclides.Therefore an attempt to describe the development of terrestrial vegetation has been made in the second part. Any prediction of future vegetation is based on knowledge of the past together with premises for the future development.The predictions made, thus, becomes marred with errors enforced by the assumptions and incomplete information of the past. The assumptions made for the predictions in this report are crude and results in a coarse

  15. The terrestrial biosphere in the SFR region

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jerling, L.; Isaeus, M. [Stockholm Univ. (Sweden). Dept. of Botany; Lanneck, J. [Stockholm Univ. (Sweden). Dept. of Physical Geography; Lindborg, T.; Schueldt, R. [Danish Nature Council, Copenhagen (Denmark)

    2001-03-01

    This report is a part of the SKB project 'SAFE' (Safety Assessment of the Final Repository of Radioactive Operational Waste). The aim of project SAFE is to update the previous safety analysis of SFR-1.SFR-1 is a facility for disposal of low and intermediate level radioactive waste, which is situated in bedrock beneath the Baltic Sea, one km off the coast near the Forsmark nuclear power plant in Northern Uppland. A part of the SAFE-analysis aims at analysing the transport of radionuclides in the ecosystems.To do so one has to build a model that includes a large amount of information concerning the biosphere.The first step is to collect and compile descriptions of the biosphere.This report is a first attempt to characterise the terrestrial environment of the SFR area of Forsmark. In the first part of the report the terrestrial environment, land class distribution and production of the area is described. The primary production in different terrestrial ecosystems is estimated for a model area in the Forsmark region. The estimations are based on the actual land class distribution and the values for the total primary production (d.w. above ground biomass)and the amount carbon produced, presented as g/m{sup 2} for each land class respectively. An important aspect of the biosphere is the vegetation and its development. The future development of vegetation is of interest since production,decomposition and thus storage of organic material, vary strongly among vegetation types and this has strong implications for the transport of radionuclides.Therefore an attempt to describe the development of terrestrial vegetation has been made in the second part. Any prediction of future vegetation is based on knowledge of the past together with premises for the future development.The predictions made, thus, becomes marred with errors enforced by the assumptions and incomplete information of the past. The assumptions made for the predictions in this report are crude and results

  16. Soil-Related Input Parameters for the Biosphere Model

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Smith, A. J.

    2004-01-01

    This report presents one of the analyses that support the Environmental Radiation Model for Yucca Mountain Nevada (ERMYN). The ''Biosphere Model Report'' (BSC 2004 [DIRS 169460]) describes the details of the conceptual model as well as the mathematical model and the required input parameters. The biosphere model is one of a series of process models supporting the postclosure Total System Performance Assessment (TSPA) for the Yucca Mountain repository. A schematic representation of the documentation flow for the Biosphere input to TSPA is presented in Figure 1-1. This figure shows the evolutionary relationships among the products (i.e., analysis and model reports) developed for biosphere modeling, and the biosphere abstraction products for TSPA, as identified in the ''Technical Work Plan for Biosphere Modeling and Expert Support'' (TWP) (BSC 2004 [DIRS 169573]). This figure is included to provide an understanding of how this analysis report contributes to biosphere modeling in support of the license application, and is not intended to imply that access to the listed documents is required to understand the contents of this report. This report, ''Soil-Related Input Parameters for the Biosphere Model'', is one of the five analysis reports that develop input parameters for use in the ERMYN model. This report is the source documentation for the six biosphere parameters identified in Table 1-1. The purpose of this analysis was to develop the biosphere model parameters associated with the accumulation and depletion of radionuclides in the soil. These parameters support the calculation of radionuclide concentrations in soil from on-going irrigation or ash deposition and, as a direct consequence, radionuclide concentration in other environmental media that are affected by radionuclide concentrations in soil. The analysis was performed in accordance with the TWP (BSC 2004 [DIRS 169573]) where the governing procedure was defined as AP-SIII.9Q, ''Scientific Analyses''. This

  17. Soil-Related Input Parameters for the Biosphere Model

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    A. J. Smith

    2004-09-09

    This report presents one of the analyses that support the Environmental Radiation Model for Yucca Mountain Nevada (ERMYN). The ''Biosphere Model Report'' (BSC 2004 [DIRS 169460]) describes the details of the conceptual model as well as the mathematical model and the required input parameters. The biosphere model is one of a series of process models supporting the postclosure Total System Performance Assessment (TSPA) for the Yucca Mountain repository. A schematic representation of the documentation flow for the Biosphere input to TSPA is presented in Figure 1-1. This figure shows the evolutionary relationships among the products (i.e., analysis and model reports) developed for biosphere modeling, and the biosphere abstraction products for TSPA, as identified in the ''Technical Work Plan for Biosphere Modeling and Expert Support'' (TWP) (BSC 2004 [DIRS 169573]). This figure is included to provide an understanding of how this analysis report contributes to biosphere modeling in support of the license application, and is not intended to imply that access to the listed documents is required to understand the contents of this report. This report, ''Soil-Related Input Parameters for the Biosphere Model'', is one of the five analysis reports that develop input parameters for use in the ERMYN model. This report is the source documentation for the six biosphere parameters identified in Table 1-1. The purpose of this analysis was to develop the biosphere model parameters associated with the accumulation and depletion of radionuclides in the soil. These parameters support the calculation of radionuclide concentrations in soil from on-going irrigation or ash deposition and, as a direct consequence, radionuclide concentration in other environmental media that are affected by radionuclide concentrations in soil. The analysis was performed in accordance with the TWP (BSC 2004 [DIRS 169573]) where the governing procedure

  18. Subsurface microbial habitats on Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boston, P. J.; Mckay, C. P.

    1991-01-01

    We developed scenarios for shallow and deep subsurface cryptic niches for microbial life on Mars. Such habitats could have considerably prolonged the persistence of life on Mars as surface conditions became increasingly inhospitable. The scenarios rely on geothermal hot spots existing below the near or deep subsurface of Mars. Recent advances in the comparatively new field of deep subsurface microbiology have revealed previously unsuspected rich aerobic and anaerobic microbal communities far below the surface of the Earth. Such habitats, protected from the grim surface conditions on Mars, could receive warmth from below and maintain water in its liquid state. In addition, geothermally or volcanically reduced gases percolating from below through a microbiologically active zone could provide the reducing power needed for a closed or semi-closed microbial ecosystem to thrive.

  19. Subsurface Fire Hazards Technical Report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Logan, R.C.

    1999-01-01

    The results from this report are preliminary and cannot be used as input into documents supporting procurement, fabrication, or construction. This technical report identifies fire hazards and proposes their mitigation for the subsurface repository fire protection system. The proposed mitigation establishes the minimum level of fire protection to meet NRC regulations, DOE fire protection orders, that ensure fire containment, adequate life safety provisions, and minimize property loss. Equipment requiring automatic fire suppression systems is identified. The subsurface fire hazards that are identified can be adequately mitigated

  20. Characterisation of DOC and its relation to the deep terrestrial biosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vieth, Andrea; Vetter, Alexandra; Sachse, Anke; Horsfield, Brian

    2010-05-01

    -rich layers like coals and source rocks which may provide carbon sources for the deep biosphere by leaching water soluble organic compounds. We investigated the potential of a series of Eocene-Pleistocene coals, mudstones and sandstones from New Zealand with different maturities (Ro between 0.29 and 0.39) and total organic carbon content (TOC) regarding their potential to release such compounds. The water extraction of these New Zealand coals using Soxhlet apparatus resulted in yields of LMWOA that may feed the local deep terrestrial biosphere over geological periods of time (VIETH et al., 2008). However, the DOC of the water extracts mainly consisted of humic substances. To investigate the effect of thermal maturity of the organic matter as well as the effect of the organic matter type on the extraction yields, we examined additional coal samples (Ro between 0.29 and 0.80) and source rock samples from low to medium maturity (Ro between 0.3 to 1.1). Within our presentation we would like to show the compositional diversity and variability of dissolved organic compounds in natural formation fluids as well as in water extracts from a series of very different lithologies and discuss their effects on the carbon cycling in the deep terrestrial subsurface. References: Andrews, J. N., Youngman, M. J., Goldbrunner, J. E., and Darling, W. G., 1987. The geochemistry of formation waters in the Molasse Basin of Upper Austria. Environmental Geology 10, 43-57. Vieth, A., Mangelsdorf, K., Sykes, R., and Horsfield, B., 2008. Water extraction of coals - potential to estimate low molecular weight organic acids as carbon feedstock for the deep terrestrial biosphere? Organic Geochemistry 39, 985-991.

  1. Locally targeted ecosynthesis: a proactive in situ search for extant life on other worlds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schulze-Makuch, Dirk; Fairén, Alberto G; Davila, Alfonso

    2013-07-01

    The Viking landers conducted the only life-detection mission outside Earth nearly 40 years ago. We believe it is time to resume this proactive search for life and propose a new approach based on Locally Targeted Ecosynthesis (LoTE) missions: the engineering of local habitable hotspots on planetary surfaces to reveal any subdued biosphere and enhance the expression of its biological activity. LoTE missions are based on a minimum set of assumptions about life, namely, the need for liquid solvents, energy sources, and nutrients, and the limits imposed by UV and ionizing radiation. The most promising destinations for LoTE missions are Mars and Saturn's moon Titan. We describe two LoTE mission concepts that would enhance the unique environmental conditions on Mars and Titan to reveal a subdued biosphere easily detectable with conventional instruments by supplying biologically essential yet critically limited compounds and by engineering local habitable conditions.

  2. Feasibility of a subsurface storage

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1998-11-01

    This report analyses the notion of subsurface storage under the scientifical, technical and legal aspects. This reflection belongs to the studies about long duration storage carried out in the framework of the axis 3 of the December 30, 1991 law. The report comprises 3 parts. The first part is a synthesis of the complete subsurface storage study: definitions, aim of the report, very long duration storage paradigm, description files of concepts, thematic synthesis (legal aspects, safety, monitoring, sites, seismicity, heat transfers, corrosion, concretes, R and works, handling, tailings and dismantlement, economy..), multi-criteria/multi-concept cross-analysis. The second part deals with the technical aspects of the subsurface storage: safety approach (long duration impact, radiation protection, mastery of effluents), monitoring strategy, macroscopic inventory of B-type waste packages, inventory of spent fuels, glasses, hulls and nozzles, geological contexts in the French territory (sites selection and characterization), on-site activities, hydrogeological and geochemical aspects, geo-technical works and infrastructures organization, subsurface seismic effects, cooling modes (ventilation, heat transfer with the geologic environment), heat transfer research programs (convection, poly-phase cooling in porous media), handling constraints, concretes (use, behaviour, durability), corrosion of metallic materials, technical-economical analysis, international context (experience feedback from Sweden (CLAB) and the USA (Yucca Mountain), other European and French facilities). The last part of the report is a graphical appendix with 3-D views and schemes of the different concepts. (J.S.)

  3. Genetic relationships of extant brown bears (Ursus arctos) and polar bears (Ursus maritimus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cronin, Matthew A; MacNeil, Michael D

    2012-01-01

    Polar bears (Ursus maritimus) and brown bears (Ursus arctos) are closely related species for which extensive mitochondrial and nuclear phylogenetic comparisons have been made. We used previously published genotype data for 8 microsatellite DNA loci from 930 brown bears in 19 populations and 473 polar bears in 16 populations to compare the population genetic relationships of extant populations of the species. Genetic distances (Nei standard distance = 1.157), the proportion of private alleles (52% of alleles are not shared by the species), and Bayesian cluster analysis are consistent with morphological and life-history characteristics that distinguish polar bears and brown bears as different species with little or no gene flow among extant populations.

  4. Biosphere modelling for the assessment of radioactive waste repositories: the development of a common basis by the BIOMOVS II working group on reference biospheres

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    VanDorp, F.

    1996-01-01

    Performance criteria for radioactive waste repositories are often expressed in terms of dose or risk. The characteristics of biosphere modelling for performance assessment are that: a) potential release occurs in the distant future, b) reliable predictions of human behaviour at the time of release are impracticable, and c) the biosphere is not considered to be a barrier. For these and other reasons, many unexplained differences have arisen in the approaches to biosphere modelling. The BIOMOVS II Working Group on Reference Biospheres has developed a) a recommended methodology for biosphere model development, b) a structured electronic list of features, events and processes (FEPs), and c) an illustrative example of the recommended methodology. The Working Group has successfully tested the Interaction Matrix (or Rock Engineering Systems, RES) approach for developing conceptual models. The BIOMOVS II Working Groups on Reference Biospheres and Complementary Studies have achieved considerable harmonisation in approaches to biosphere modelling. (author)

  5. SUBSURFACE VISUAL ALARM SYSTEM ANALYSIS

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    D.W. Markman

    2001-01-01

    The ''Subsurface Fire Hazard Analysis'' (CRWMS M andO 1998, page 61), and the document, ''Title III Evaluation Report for the Surface and Subsurface Communication System'', (CRWMS M andO 1999a, pages 21 and 23), both indicate the installed communication system is adequate to support Exploratory Studies Facility (ESF) activities with the exception of the mine phone system for emergency notification purposes. They recommend the installation of a visual alarm system to supplement the page/party phone system The purpose of this analysis is to identify data communication highway design approaches, and provide justification for the selected or recommended alternatives for the data communication of the subsurface visual alarm system. This analysis is being prepared to document a basis for the design selection of the data communication method. This analysis will briefly describe existing data or voice communication or monitoring systems within the ESF, and look at how these may be revised or adapted to support the needed data highway of the subsurface visual alarm. system. The existing PLC communication system installed in subsurface is providing data communication for alcove No.5 ventilation fans, south portal ventilation fans, bulkhead doors and generator monitoring system. It is given that the data communication of the subsurface visual alarm system will be a digital based system. It is also given that it is most feasible to take advantage of existing systems and equipment and not consider an entirely new data communication system design and installation. The scope and primary objectives of this analysis are to: (1) Briefly review and describe existing available data communication highways or systems within the ESF. (2) Examine technical characteristics of an existing system to disqualify a design alternative is paramount in minimizing the number of and depth of a system review. (3) Apply general engineering design practices or criteria such as relative cost, and degree

  6. Patterns of astragalar fibular facet orientation in extant and fossil primates and their evolutionary implications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boyer, Doug M; Seiffert, Erik R

    2013-07-01

    A laterally sloping fibular facet of the astragalus (=talus) has been proposed as one of few osteological synapomorphies of strepsirrhine primates, but the feature has never been comprehensively quantified. We describe a method for calculating fibular facet orientation on digital models of astragali as the angle between the planes of the fibular facet and the lateral tibial facet. We calculated this value in a sample that includes all major extant primate clades, a diversity of Paleogene primates, and nonprimate euarchontans (n = 304). Results show that previous characterization of a divide between extant haplorhines and strepsirrhines is accurate, with little overlap even when individual data points are considered. Fibular facet orientation is conserved in extant strepsirrhines despite major differences in locomotion and body size, while extant anthropoids are more variable (e.g., low values for catarrhines relative to non-callitrichine platyrrhines). Euprimate outgroups exhibit a mosaic of character states with Cynocephalus having a more obtuse strepsirrhine-like facet and sampled treeshrews and plesiadapiforms having more acute haplorhine-like facets. Surprisingly, the earliest species of the adapiform Cantius have steep haplorhine-like facets as well. We used a Bayesian approach to reconstruct the evolution of fibular facet orientation as a continuous character across a supertree of living and extinct primates. Mean estimates for crown Primatomorpha (97.9°), Primates (99.5°), Haplorhini (98.7°), and Strepsirrhini (108.2°) support the hypothesis that the strepsirrhine condition is derived, while lower values for crown Anthropoidea (92.8°) and Catarrhini (88.9°) are derived in the opposite direction. Copyright © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  7. Biosphere dose conversion Factor Importance and Sensitivity Analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    M. Wasiolek

    2004-01-01

    This report presents importance and sensitivity analysis for the environmental radiation model for Yucca Mountain, Nevada (ERMYN). ERMYN is a biosphere model supporting the total system performance assessment (TSPA) for the license application (LA) for the Yucca Mountain repository. This analysis concerns the output of the model, biosphere dose conversion factors (BDCFs) for the groundwater, and the volcanic ash exposure scenarios. It identifies important processes and parameters that influence the BDCF values and distributions, enhances understanding of the relative importance of the physical and environmental processes on the outcome of the biosphere model, includes a detailed pathway analysis for key radionuclides, and evaluates the appropriateness of selected parameter values that are not site-specific or have large uncertainty

  8. The biosphere today and tomorrow in the SFR area

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kautsky, Ulrik (ed.)

    2001-06-01

    This report is a compilation of the work done mainly in the SAFE project for the biosphere from about 14 reports. The SAFE project is the updated safety analysis of SFR-1, the LLW and ILW repository at Forsmark. The aim of the report is to summarize the available information about the present-day biosphere in the area surrounding SFR and to use this information, together with information about the previous development of the biosphere, to predict the future development of the area in a more comparable way than the underlying reports. The data actually used for the models have been taken from the original reports which also justify or validate the data. The report compiles information about climate, oceanography, landscape, sedimentation, shoreline displacement, marine, lake and terrestrial ecosystems.

  9. An Estimate of the Total DNA in the Biosphere.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Landenmark, Hanna K E; Forgan, Duncan H; Cockell, Charles S

    2015-06-01

    Modern whole-organism genome analysis, in combination with biomass estimates, allows us to estimate a lower bound on the total information content in the biosphere: 5.3 × 1031 (±3.6 × 1031) megabases (Mb) of DNA. Given conservative estimates regarding DNA transcription rates, this information content suggests biosphere processing speeds exceeding yottaNOPS values (1024 Nucleotide Operations Per Second). Although prokaryotes evolved at least 3 billion years before plants and animals, we find that the information content of prokaryotes is similar to plants and animals at the present day. This information-based approach offers a new way to quantify anthropogenic and natural processes in the biosphere and its information diversity over time.

  10. Community Assembly Processes of the Microbial Rare Biosphere.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jia, Xiu; Dini-Andreote, Francisco; Falcão Salles, Joana

    2018-03-14

    Our planet teems with microorganisms that often present a skewed abundance distribution in a local community, with relatively few dominant species coexisting alongside a high number of rare species. Recent studies have demonstrated that these rare taxa serve as limitless reservoirs of genetic diversity, and perform disproportionate types of functions despite their low abundances. However, relatively little is known about the mechanisms controlling rarity and the processes promoting the development of the rare biosphere. Here, we propose the use of multivariate cut-offs to estimate rare species and phylogenetic null models applied to predefined rare taxa to disentangle the relative influences of ecoevolutionary processes mediating the assembly of the rare biosphere. Importantly, the identification of the factors controlling rare species assemblages is critical for understanding the types of rarity, how the rare biosphere is established, and how rare microorganisms fluctuate over spatiotemporal scales, thus enabling prospective predictions of ecosystem responses. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. The biosphere today and tomorrow in the SFR area

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kautsky, Ulrik

    2001-06-01

    This report is a compilation of the work done mainly in the SAFE project for the biosphere from about 14 reports. The SAFE project is the updated safety analysis of SFR-1, the LLW and ILW repository at Forsmark. The aim of the report is to summarize the available information about the present-day biosphere in the area surrounding SFR and to use this information, together with information about the previous development of the biosphere, to predict the future development of the area in a more comparable way than the underlying reports. The data actually used for the models have been taken from the original reports which also justify or validate the data. The report compiles information about climate, oceanography, landscape, sedimentation, shoreline displacement, marine, lake and terrestrial ecosystems

  12. Direct thermal effects of the Hadean bombardment did not limit early subsurface habitability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grimm, R. E.; Marchi, S.

    2018-03-01

    Intense bombardment is considered characteristic of the Hadean and early Archean eons, yet some detrital zircons indicate that near-surface water was present and thus at least intervals of clement conditions may have existed. We investigate the habitability of the top few kilometers of the subsurface by updating a prior approach to thermal evolution of the crust due to impact heating, using a revised bombardment history, a more accurate thermal model, and treatment of melt sheets from large projectiles (>100 km diameter). We find that subsurface habitable volume grows nearly continuously throughout the Hadean and early Archean (4.5-3.5 Ga) because impact heat is dissipated rapidly compared to the total duration and waning strength of the bombardment. Global sterilization was only achieved using an order of magnitude more projectiles in 1/10 the time. Melt sheets from large projectiles can completely resurface the Earth several times prior to ∼4.2 Ga but at most once since then. Even in the Hadean, melt sheets have little effect on habitability because cooling times are short compared to resurfacing intervals, allowing subsurface biospheres to be locally re-established by groundwater infiltration between major impacts. Therefore the subsurface is always habitable somewhere, and production of global steam or silicate-vapor atmospheres are the only remaining avenues to early surface sterilization by bombardment.

  13. Morphometric variation of extant platyrrhine molars: taxonomic implications for fossil platyrrhines

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mónica Nova Delgado

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available The phylogenetic position of many fossil platyrrhines with respect to extant ones is not yet clear. Two main hypotheses have been proposed: the layered or successive radiations hypothesis suggests that Patagonian fossils are Middle Miocene stem platyrrhines lacking modern descendants, whereas the long lineage hypothesis argues for an evolutionary continuity of all fossil platyrrhines with the extant ones. Our geometric morphometric analysis of a 15 landmark-based configuration of platyrrhines’ first and second lower molars suggest that morphological stasis may explain the reduced molar shape variation observed. Platyrrhine lower molar shape might be a primitive retention of the ancestral state affected by strong ecological constraints throughout the radiation of the main platyrrhine families. The Patagonian fossil specimens showed two distinct morphological patterns of lower molars, Callicebus—like and Saguinus—like, which might be the precursors of the extant forms, whereas the Middle Miocene specimens, though showing morphological resemblances with the Patagonian fossils, also displayed new, derived molar patterns, Alouatta—like and Pitheciinae—like, thereby suggesting that despite the overall morphological stasis of molars, phenotypic diversification of molar shape was already settled during the Middle Miocene.

  14. Physical and chemical controls on habitats for life in the deep subsurface beneath continents and ice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parnell, John; McMahon, Sean

    2016-01-01

    The distribution of life in the continental subsurface is likely controlled by a range of physical and chemical factors. The fundamental requirements are for space to live, carbon for biomass and energy for metabolic activity. These are inter-related, such that adequate permeability is required to maintain a supply of nutrients, and facies interfaces invite colonization by juxtaposing porous habitats with nutrient-rich mudrocks. Viable communities extend to several kilometres depth, diminishing downwards with decreasing porosity. Carbon is contributed by recycling of organic matter originally fixed by photosynthesis, and chemoautotrophy using crustal carbon dioxide and methane. In the shallow crust, the recycled component predominates, as processed kerogen or hydrocarbons, but abiotic carbon sources may be significant in deeper, metamorphosed crust. Hydrogen to fuel chemosynthesis is available from radiolysis, mechanical deformation and mineral alteration. Activity in the subcontinental deep biosphere can be traced through the geological record back to the Precambrian. Before the colonization of the Earth's surface by land plants, a geologically recent event, subsurface life probably dominated the planet's biomass. In regions of thick ice sheets the base of the ice sheet, where liquid water is stable and a sediment layer is created by glacial erosion, can be regarded as a deep biosphere habitat. This environment may be rich in dissolved organic carbon and nutrients accumulated from dissolving ice, and from weathering of the bedrock and the sediment layer. PMID:26667907

  15. A New Sensitive GC-MS-based Method for Analysis of Dipicolinic Acid and Quantifying Bacterial Endospores in Deep Marine Subsurface Sediment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fang, J.

    2015-12-01

    Marine sediments cover more than two-thirds of the Earth's surface and represent a major part of the deep biosphere. Microbial cells and microbial activity appear to be widespread in these sediments. Recently, we reported the isolation of gram-positive anaerobic spore-forming piezophilic bacteria and detection of bacterial endospores in marine subsurface sediment from the Shimokita coalbed, Japan. However, the modern molecular microbiological methods (e.g., DNA-based microbial detection techniques) cannot detect bacterial endospore, because endospores are impermeable and are not stained by fluorescence DNA dyes or by ribosomal RNA staining techniques such as catalysed reporter deposition fluorescence in situ hybridization. Thus, the total microbial cell abundance in the deep biosphere may has been globally underestimated. This emphasizes the need for a new cultivation independent approach for the quantification of bacterial endospores in the deep subsurface. Dipicolinic acid (DPA, pyridine-2,6-dicarboxylic acid) is a universal and specific component of bacterial endospores, representing 5-15wt% of the dry spore, and therefore is a useful indicator and quantifier of bacterial endospores and permits to estimate total spore numbers in the subsurface biosphere. We developed a sensitive analytical method to quantify DPA content in environmental samples using gas chromatography-mass spectrometry. The method is sensitive and more convenient in use than other traditional methods. We applied this method to analyzing sediment samples from the South China Sea (obtained from IODP Exp. 349) to determine the abundance of spore-forming bacteria in the deep marine subsurface sediment. Our results suggest that gram-positive, endospore-forming bacteria may be the "unseen majority" in the deep biosphere.

  16. The Geosphere - Biosphere international program and the global change

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chanin, M.L.

    1991-01-01

    The objective of the Geosphere-Biosphere International Program (GBIP) is to achieve a correct approach of the various biogeochemical interactions between the different components of the environment (oceans, atmosphere, biosphere). The main themes are: study of the chemical regulation in the global atmosphere and influence of natural and anthropogenic processes on trace element cycles; influence of the oceanic biogeochemical processes on climates and their response to climatic changes; influence of soil utilization modification (especially coastal) on climates and ecosystems; interaction between vegetation and the water cycle; interaction between climatic changes, ecosystems and agricultural productivity; approaches to climate modelling. French component of the GBIP is presented [fr

  17. Biosphere processes affecting environmnetal impacts of hazardous wastes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Watkins, B.; Broderick, M.

    1991-01-01

    ANS Consultants Limited has reviewed and assessed a number of biosphere processes which affect the environmental impact of hazardous waste disposal. Processes examined have included the long-term effects of climate change on biosphere characteristics and the transport of toxic materials in food chains; the role of soil animals and plants roots in cycling elements from depth to the soil surface; volatisation mechanisms; the transport of elements in soil with particular reference to erosion and resuspension; mechanisms for foliar contamination via irrigation waters; and organic matter decomposition in varying environmental conditions. (au)

  18. Radioactive waste disposal assessment - overview of biosphere processes and models

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Coughtrey, P.J.

    1992-09-01

    This report provides an overview of biosphere processes and models in the general context of the radiological assessment of radioactive waste disposal as a basis for HMIP's response to biosphere aspects of Nirex's submissions for disposal of radioactive wastes in a purpose-built repository at Sellafield, Cumbria. The overview takes into account published information from the UK as available from Nirex's safety and assessment research programme and HMIP's disposal assessment programme, as well as that available from studies in the UK and elsewhere. (Author)

  19. Deep Subsurface Microbial Communities Shaped by the Chicxulub Impactor

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cockell, C. S.; Coolen, M.; Schaefer, B.; Grice, K.; Gulick, S. P. S.; Morgan, J. V.; Kring, D. A.; Osinski, G.

    2017-12-01

    . These data show that the deep biosphere can preserve the imprint of catastrophe long after these events. In this case, the distribution of deep subsurface microbial communities reflects the lithological sequence established during the substantial impact-induced geological rearrangements that occurred in the first hours of the Cenozoic.

  20. Integrated geomechanical modelling for deep subsurface damage

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wees, J.D. van; Orlic, B.; Zijl, W.; Jongerius, P.; Schreppers, G.J.; Hendriks, M.

    2001-01-01

    Government, E&P and mining industry increasingly demand fundamental insight and accurate predictions on subsurface and surface deformation and damage due to exploitation of subsurface natural resources, and subsurface storage of energy residues (e.g. CO2). At this moment deformation is difficult to

  1. Surface and subsurface conditions in permafrost areas - a literature review

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Vidstrand, Patrik

    2003-02-01

    This report contains a summary of some of the information within existing technical and scientific literature on permafrost. Permafrost is viewed as one of the future climate driven process domains that may exist in Scandinavia, and that may give rise to significantly different surface and subsurface conditions than the present. Except for changes in the biosphere, permafrost may impact hydraulic, mechanical, and chemical subsurface processes and conditions. Permafrost and its influences on the subsurface conditions are thus of interest for the performance and safety assessments of deep geological waste repositories. The definition of permafrost is 'ground that stays at or below 0 deg C for at least two consecutive years'. Permafrost will effect the geological subsurface to some depth. How deep the permafrost may grow is a function of the heat balance, thermal conditions at the surface and within the ground, and the geothermal heat flux from the Earth's inner parts. The main chapters of the report summaries the knowledge on permafrost evolution, occurrence and distribution, and extracts information concerning hydrology and mechanical and chemical impacts due to permafrost related conditions. The results of a literature review are always dependent on the available literature. Concerning permafrost there is some literature available from investigations in the field of long-term repositories and some from mining industries. However, reports of these investigations are few and the bulk of permafrost literature comes from the science departments concerned with surficial processes (e.g. geomorphology, hydrology, agriculture, etc) and from engineering concerns, such as foundation of constructions and pipeline design. This focus within the permafrost research inevitably yields a biased but also an abundant amount of information on localised surficial processes and a limited amount on regional and deep permafrost characteristics. Possible conclusions are that there is

  2. Surface and subsurface conditions in permafrost areas - a literature review

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Vidstrand, Patrik [Bergab, Goeteborg (Sweden)

    2003-02-01

    This report contains a summary of some of the information within existing technical and scientific literature on permafrost. Permafrost is viewed as one of the future climate driven process domains that may exist in Scandinavia, and that may give rise to significantly different surface and subsurface conditions than the present. Except for changes in the biosphere, permafrost may impact hydraulic, mechanical, and chemical subsurface processes and conditions. Permafrost and its influences on the subsurface conditions are thus of interest for the performance and safety assessments of deep geological waste repositories. The definition of permafrost is 'ground that stays at or below 0 deg C for at least two consecutive years'. Permafrost will effect the geological subsurface to some depth. How deep the permafrost may grow is a function of the heat balance, thermal conditions at the surface and within the ground, and the geothermal heat flux from the Earth's inner parts. The main chapters of the report summaries the knowledge on permafrost evolution, occurrence and distribution, and extracts information concerning hydrology and mechanical and chemical impacts due to permafrost related conditions. The results of a literature review are always dependent on the available literature. Concerning permafrost there is some literature available from investigations in the field of long-term repositories and some from mining industries. However, reports of these investigations are few and the bulk of permafrost literature comes from the science departments concerned with surficial processes (e.g. geomorphology, hydrology, agriculture, etc) and from engineering concerns, such as foundation of constructions and pipeline design. This focus within the permafrost research inevitably yields a biased but also an abundant amount of information on localised surficial processes and a limited amount on regional and deep permafrost characteristics. Possible conclusions are that

  3. Exchange processes at geosphere-biosphere interface. Current SKB approach and example of coupled hydrological-ecological approach

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Woerman, Anders [Swedish Univ. of Agricultural Sciences, Uppsala (Sweden). Dept. of Biometry and Technology

    2003-09-01

    The design of the repository for final disposal of spent nuclear fuel proposed by SKB is based on a multi-barrier system, in which the geosphere and biosphere are the utmost barrier surrounding the engineer barriers. This report briefly reviews the current approach taken by SKB to account for hydrological and ecological processes at the geosphere-biosphere interface (GBI) and their future plans in this area. A simple analysis was performed to shift the focus of performance assessment involving geosphere-biosphere interface modelling from the very simplistic assumption that the quaternary sediments are bypassed to one in which a more detailed model for sub-surface flows is included. This study indicated that, for many assumed ecosystem descriptions, the presence of the GBI leads to lower maximum doses to individual humans compared to a case when the GBI is neglected. This effect is due to the additional 'barrier' offered by the GBI. The main exposure pathways were assumed to occur through the food web. However, particularly the leakage on land through the stream-network and lakes can lead to higher doses due to ecosystem interaction with arable land. A scenario that gives particularly long duration of doses occurs due to land rise and with the transformation of the former bay and lake bed sediments into agricultural land. This effect is due to the significant retention or accumulation in aquatic sediment, which causes high activities to build up with time. Particularly, in combination with changing conditions in climate, humans life-style or geographic conditions (land rise, deforestation,etc.) doses to individual humans can be large.

  4. Exchange processes at geosphere-biosphere interface. Current SKB approach and example of coupled hydrological-ecological approach

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Woerman, Anders

    2003-09-01

    The design of the repository for final disposal of spent nuclear fuel proposed by SKB is based on a multi-barrier system, in which the geosphere and biosphere are the utmost barrier surrounding the engineer barriers. This report briefly reviews the current approach taken by SKB to account for hydrological and ecological processes at the geosphere-biosphere interface (GBI) and their future plans in this area. A simple analysis was performed to shift the focus of performance assessment involving geosphere-biosphere interface modelling from the very simplistic assumption that the quaternary sediments are bypassed to one in which a more detailed model for sub-surface flows is included. This study indicated that, for many assumed ecosystem descriptions, the presence of the GBI leads to lower maximum doses to individual humans compared to a case when the GBI is neglected. This effect is due to the additional 'barrier' offered by the GBI. The main exposure pathways were assumed to occur through the food web. However, particularly the leakage on land through the stream-network and lakes can lead to higher doses due to ecosystem interaction with arable land. A scenario that gives particularly long duration of doses occurs due to land rise and with the transformation of the former bay and lake bed sediments into agricultural land. This effect is due to the significant retention or accumulation in aquatic sediment, which causes high activities to build up with time. Particularly, in combination with changing conditions in climate, humans life-style or geographic conditions (land rise, deforestation,etc.) doses to individual humans can be large

  5. Ancient fossil specimens of extinct species are genetically more distant to an outgroup than extant sister species are

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Shi

    2009-01-01

    There exists a remarkable correlation between genetic distance as measured by protein or DNA dissimilarity and time of species divergence as inferred from fossil records. This observation has provoked the molecular clock hypothesis. However, data inconsistent with the hypothesis have steadily accumulated in recent years from studies of extant organisms. Here the published DNA and protein sequences from ancient fossil specimens were examined to see if they would support the molecular clock hypothesis. The hypothesis predicts that ancient specimens cannot be genetically more distant to an outgroup than extant sister species are. Also, two distinct ancient specimens cannot be genetically more distant than their extant sister species are. The findings here do not conform to these predictions. Neanderthals are more distant to chimpanzees and gorillas than modern humans are. Dinosaurs are more distant to frogs than extant birds are. Mastodons are more distant to opossums than other placental mammals are. The genetic distance between dinosaurs and mastodons is greater than that between extant birds and mammals. Therefore, while the molecular clock hypothesis is consistent with some data from extant organisms, it has yet to find support from ancient fossils. Far more damaging to the hypothesis than data from extant organisms, which merely question the constancy of mutation rate, the study of ancient fossil organisms here challenges for the first time the fundamental premise of modern evolution theory that genetic distances had always increased with time in the past history of life on Earth. PMID:18600632

  6. Potential pitfalls of reconstructing deep time evolutionary history with only extant data, a case study using the canidae (mammalia, carnivora).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Finarelli, John A; Goswami, Anjali

    2013-12-01

    Reconstructing evolutionary patterns and their underlying processes is a central goal in biology. Yet many analyses of deep evolutionary histories assume that data from the fossil record is too incomplete to include, and rely solely on databases of extant taxa. Excluding fossil taxa assumes that character state distributions across living taxa are faithful representations of a clade's entire evolutionary history. Many factors can make this assumption problematic. Fossil taxa do not simply lead-up to extant taxa; they represent now-extinct lineages that can substantially impact interpretations of character evolution for extant groups. Here, we analyze body mass data for extant and fossil canids (dogs, foxes, and relatives) for changes in mean and variance through time. AIC-based model selection recovered distinct models for each of eight canid subgroups. We compared model fit of parameter estimates for (1) extant data alone and (2) extant and fossil data, demonstrating that the latter performs significantly better. Moreover, extant-only analyses result in unrealistically low estimates of ancestral mass. Although fossil data are not always available, reconstructions of deep-time organismal evolution in the absence of deep-time data can be highly inaccurate, and we argue that every effort should be made to include fossil data in macroevolutionary studies. © 2013 The Authors. Evolution published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. on behalf of The Society for the Study of Evolution.

  7. Subsurface Noble Gas Sampling Manual

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Carrigan, C. R. [Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (LLNL), Livermore, CA (United States); Sun, Y. [Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (LLNL), Livermore, CA (United States)

    2017-09-18

    The intent of this document is to provide information about best available approaches for performing subsurface soil gas sampling during an On Site Inspection or OSI. This information is based on field sampling experiments, computer simulations and data from the NA-22 Noble Gas Signature Experiment Test Bed at the Nevada Nuclear Security Site (NNSS). The approaches should optimize the gas concentration from the subsurface cavity or chimney regime while simultaneously minimizing the potential for atmospheric radioxenon and near-surface Argon-37 contamination. Where possible, we quantitatively assess differences in sampling practices for the same sets of environmental conditions. We recognize that all sampling scenarios cannot be addressed. However, if this document helps to inform the intuition of the reader about addressing the challenges resulting from the inevitable deviations from the scenario assumed here, it will have achieved its goal.

  8. VISUALIZATION OF REGISTERED SUBSURFACE ANATOMY

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    2010-01-01

    A system and method for visualization of subsurface anatomy includes obtaining a first image from a first camera and a second image from a second camera or a second channel of the first camera, where the first and second images contain shared anatomical structures. The second camera and the secon....... A visual interface displays the registered visualization of the first and second images. The system and method are particularly useful for imaging during minimally invasive surgery, such as robotic surgery....

  9. Biological effects of extreme environmental conditions. [considering limits of biosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Imshenetskiy, A. A.

    1975-01-01

    Actions of extreme physical and chemical space factors on microorganisms and plants are elaborated in order to establish limits for the biosphere. Considered are effects of low and high temperatures; ionizing and ultraviolet radiation; various gases; and effects of vibration, desiccation and acceleration.

  10. Ecotourism and its effects on wildlife of Pachmarhi Biosphere Reserve

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    use

    sustainable use of wildlife in the Manu Biosphere. Reserve and Puero Maldonado National Parks of Peru in. (Groom et al., 2000), recognizes the benefits of ecotourism as it helps to .... leading tour companies that collaborate with lodges and tour groups. Therefore, the local communities do not benefit from the revenue.

  11. Posiva's Strategy for Biosphere Studies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hautojaervi, Aimo; Vieno, Timo

    2002-01-01

    Aimo Hautojaervi (Posiva, Finland) explained that Posiva follows the regulation from authorities that will be published soon on the STUK Web site in an English version. As an example, he said that a dose constraint of 0.1 mSv/a must be considered for several thousand years and release rate constraint for the long term. The values for these constraints were given by STUK and Posiva needs to demonstrate compliance. Posiva welcomes the regulator's clear requirements and guidance in the field of biosphere analyses. Moreover, Aimo Hautojaervi presented the planned future work that will be carried out by Posiva. As well as carrying out biosphere modelling for potential recipients at Olkiluoto, Posiva will conduct biosphere analyses for wells, lakes, seas, etc., and further evaluate human actions and develop biosphere models in close cooperation with SKB. Posiva is also actively seeking international cooperation in these new researches fields, for example within IAEA. Two potentially problematic radionuclides were also mentioned: C-14 and Radon plus decay products. These two radionuclides will be studied in depth in the future Posiva research and development programme

  12. Terrestrial acidification during the end-Permian biosphere crisis?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sephton, Mark A.; Jiao, Dan; Engel, Michael H.; Looy, Cindy V.; Visscher, Henk

    Excessive acid rainfall associated with emplacement of the Siberian Traps magmatic province is increasingly accepted as a major contributing factor to the end-Permian biosphere crisis. However, direct proxy evidence of terrestrial acidification is so far not available. In this paper, we seek to

  13. Parasitic infections of amphibians in the Pendjari Biosphere ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Parasitic infections of amphibians in the Pendjari Biosphere Reserve, Benin. ... Results obtained show the possible influence of land-use pattern on parasite distribution. For example, the ... Furthermore, this infection pattern may be indicative of an immunosuppressive effect of pesticides on the frogs of the Agricultural Zone.

  14. Marine biosphere reserves - Need of the 21st century

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Dhargalkar, V.K.; Untawale, A.G.

    been declared in India and a few more are under consideration. The present article gives in brief the status of Marine Biosphere Reserves in India and a few other potential areas for the same reason, along the Indian coast. An action plan has been...

  15. Socio-economic conditions in selected biosphere reserves

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Kušová, Drahomíra; Těšitel, Jan; Matějka, K.; Bartoš, Michael

    2006-01-01

    Roč. 12, č. 3 (2006), s. 157-169 ISSN 1211-7420 R&D Projects: GA MŽP(CZ) SM/610/3/03 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60870520 Keywords : nature protection * socio-economic conditions * biosphere reserves * sustainable development Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour

  16. Analysis specifications for the CC3 biosphere model BIOTRAC

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Szekely, J.G.; Wojciechowski, L.C.; Stephens, M.E.; Halliday, H.A.

    1994-12-01

    AECL Research is assessing a concept for disposing of Canada's nuclear fuel waste in a vault deep in plutonic rock of the Canadian Shield. A computer program called the Systems Variability Analysis Code (SYVAC) has been developed as an analytical tool for the postclosure (long-term) assessment of the concept. SYVAC3, the third generation of the code, is an executive program that directs repeated simulation of the disposal system to take into account parameter variation. For the postclosure assessment, the system model, CC3 (Canadian Concept, generation 3), was developed to describe a hypothetical disposal system that includes a disposal vault, the local geosphere and the biosphere in the vicinity of any discharge zones. BIOTRAC (BIOsphere TRansport And Consequences) is the biosphere model in the CC3 system model. The specifications for BIOTRAC, which were developed over a period of seven years, were subjected to numerous walkthrough examinations by the Biosphere Model Working Group to ensure that the intent of the model developers would be correctly specified for transformation into FORTRAN code. The FORTRAN version of BIOTRAC was written from interim versions of these specifications. Improvements to the code are based on revised versions of these specifications. The specifications consist of a data dictionary; sets of synopses, data flow diagrams and mini specs for the component models of BIOTRAC (surface water, soil, atmosphere, and food chain and dose); and supporting calculations (interface to the geosphere, consequences, and mass balance). (author). 20 refs., tabs., figs

  17. Bird checklist, Guánica Biosphere Reserve, Puerto Rico

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wayne J. Arendt; John Faaborg; Miguel Canals; Jerry Bauer

    2015-01-01

    This research note compiles 43 years of research and monitoring data to produce the first comprehensive checklist of the dry forest avian community found within the Guánica Biosphere Reserve. We provide an overview of the reserve along with sighting locales, a list of 185 birds with their resident status and abundance, and a list of the available bird habitats....

  18. Evidence for an active rare biosphere within freshwater protists community.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Debroas, Didier; Hugoni, Mylène; Domaizon, Isabelle

    2015-03-01

    Studies on the active rare biosphere at the RNA level are mainly focused on Bacteria and Archaea and fail to include the protists, which are involved in the main biogeochemical cycles of the earth. In this study, the richness, composition and activity of the rare protistan biosphere were determined from a temporal survey of two lakes by pyrosequencing. In these ecosystems, the always rare OTUs represented 77.2% of the total OTUs and 76.6% of the phylogenetic diversity. From the various phylogenetic indices computed, the phylogenetic units (PUs) constituted exclusively by always rare OTUs were discriminated from the other PUs. Therefore, the rare biosphere included mainly taxa that are distant from the reference databases compared to the dominant ones. In addition, the rarest OTUs represented 59.8% of the active biosphere depicted by rRNA and the activity (rRNA:rDNA ratio) increased with the rarity. The high rRNA:rDNA ratio determined in the rare fraction highlights that some protists were active at low abundances and contribute to ecosystem functioning. Interestingly, the always rare and active OTUs were characterized by seasonal changes in relation with the main environmental parameters measured. In conclusion, the rare eukaryotes represent an active, dynamic and overlooked fraction in the lacustrine ecosystems. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  19. Putting the Deep Biosphere and Gas Hydrates on the Map

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sikorski, Janelle J.; Briggs, Brandon R.

    2016-01-01

    Microbial processes in the deep biosphere affect marine sediments, such as the formation of gas hydrate deposits. Gas hydrate deposits offer a large source of natural gas with the potential to augment energy reserves and affect climate and seafloor stability. Despite the significant interdependence between life and geology in the ocean, coverage…

  20. Acetogenesis in the energy-starved deep biosphere - a paradox?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lever, Mark

    2012-01-01

    Under anoxic conditions in sediments, acetogens are often thought to be outcompeted by microorganisms performing energetically more favorable metabolic pathways, such as sulfate reduction or methanogenesis. Recent evidence from deep subseafloor sediments suggesting acetogenesis in the presence of...... to be taken into account to understand microbial survival in the energy-depleted deep biosphere....

  1. Ecotourism and its effects on wildlife of Pachmarhi Biosphere Reserve

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The present paper focused on ecotourism and its effects on wildlife. In the present scenario the ecotourism is a grooming sector in developing nations. However, its impact on wildlife and indigenous people has become a controversial issue. Pachmarhi Biosphere Reserve site explores the multitude of interactions that exist ...

  2. Geophysical characterization of subsurface barriers

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Borns, D.J.

    1995-08-01

    An option for controlling contaminant migration from plumes and buried waste sites is to construct a subsurface barrier of a low-permeability material. The successful application of subsurface barriers requires processes to verify the emplacement and effectiveness of barrier and to monitor the performance of a barrier after emplacement. Non destructive and remote sensing techniques, such as geophysical methods, are possible technologies to address these needs. The changes in mechanical, hydrologic and chemical properties associated with the emplacement of an engineered barrier will affect geophysical properties such a seismic velocity, electrical conductivity, and dielectric constant. Also, the barrier, once emplaced and interacting with the in situ geologic system, may affect the paths along which electrical current flows in the subsurface. These changes in properties and processes facilitate the detection and monitoring of the barrier. The approaches to characterizing and monitoring engineered barriers can be divided between (1) methods that directly image the barrier using the contrasts in physical properties between the barrier and the host soil or rock and (2) methods that reflect flow processes around or through the barrier. For example, seismic methods that delineate the changes in density and stiffness associated with the barrier represents a direct imaging method. Electrical self potential methods and flow probes based on heat flow methods represent techniques that can delineate the flow path or flow processes around and through a barrier

  3. Human aspirations, environmental care, and the much-needed World Decade of the Biosphere

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    1982-04-01

    An editorial dealing with a world-wide need to support a common cause such as the maintenance of our biosphere as our home and planetary life-support is presented. The planned World Decade of the Biosphere which is intended to inform and educate people throughout the world about the biosphere and man's relationship to it is discussed. (KRM)

  4. Implementation of the Biosphere Compatibility Principle in Urban Planning: How to Train Next-Generation Specialists

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ivanova, Zinaida Ilyinichna; Yudenkova, Olga Valeryevna; Ishkov, Aleksandr Dmitrievich; Shnyrenkov, Evgeny Anatolyevich

    2015-01-01

    The co-authors address the relevant issues concerning the need to implement the principle of the biosphere compatibility as the core prerequisite for the symbiotic co-existence of man and nature. Caring treatment of the biosphere, termination of its excessive exploitation, analysis of the ratio between the biospheric potential of specific areas…

  5. 10 CFR 63.305 - Required characteristics of the reference biosphere.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    ... 10 Energy 2 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Required characteristics of the reference biosphere. 63... Standards § 63.305 Required characteristics of the reference biosphere. (a) Features, events, and processes that describe the reference biosphere must be consistent with present knowledge of the conditions in...

  6. Group dynamics challenges: Insights from Biosphere 2 experiments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nelson, Mark; Gray, Kathelin; Allen, John P.

    2015-07-01

    Successfully managing group dynamics of small, physically isolated groups is vital for long duration space exploration/habitation and for terrestrial CELSS (Controlled Environmental Life Support System) facilities with human participants. Biosphere 2 had important differences and shares some key commonalities with both Antarctic and space environments. There were a multitude of stress factors during the first two year closure experiment as well as mitigating factors. A helpful tool used at Biosphere 2 was the work of W.R. Bion who identified two competing modalities of behavior in small groups. Task-oriented groups are governed by conscious acceptance of goals, reality-thinking in relation to time and resources, and intelligent management of challenges. The opposing unconscious mode, the "basic-assumption" ("group animal") group, manifests through Dependency/Kill the Leader, Fight/Flight and Pairing. These unconscious dynamics undermine and can defeat the task group's goal. The biospherians experienced some dynamics seen in other isolated teams: factions developing reflecting personal chemistry and disagreements on overall mission procedures. These conflicts were exacerbated by external power struggles which enlisted support of those inside. Nevertheless, the crew evolved a coherent, creative life style to deal with some of the deprivations of isolation. The experience of the first two year closure of Biosphere 2 vividly illustrates both vicissitudes and management of group dynamics. The crew overrode inevitable frictions to creatively manage both operational and research demands and opportunities of the facility, thus staying 'on task' in Bion's group dynamics terminology. The understanding that Biosphere 2 was their life support system may also have helped the mission to succeed. Insights from the Biosphere 2 experience can help space and remote missions cope successfully with the inherent challenges of small, isolated crews.

  7. Group dynamics challenges: Insights from Biosphere 2 experiments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nelson, Mark; Gray, Kathelin; Allen, John P

    2015-07-01

    Successfully managing group dynamics of small, physically isolated groups is vital for long duration space exploration/habitation and for terrestrial CELSS (Controlled Environmental Life Support System) facilities with human participants. Biosphere 2 had important differences and shares some key commonalities with both Antarctic and space environments. There were a multitude of stress factors during the first two year closure experiment as well as mitigating factors. A helpful tool used at Biosphere 2 was the work of W.R. Bion who identified two competing modalities of behavior in small groups. Task-oriented groups are governed by conscious acceptance of goals, reality-thinking in relation to time and resources, and intelligent management of challenges. The opposing unconscious mode, the "basic-assumption" ("group animal") group, manifests through Dependency/Kill the Leader, Fight/Flight and Pairing. These unconscious dynamics undermine and can defeat the task group's goal. The biospherians experienced some dynamics seen in other isolated teams: factions developing reflecting personal chemistry and disagreements on overall mission procedures. These conflicts were exacerbated by external power struggles which enlisted support of those inside. Nevertheless, the crew evolved a coherent, creative life style to deal with some of the deprivations of isolation. The experience of the first two year closure of Biosphere 2 vividly illustrates both vicissitudes and management of group dynamics. The crew overrode inevitable frictions to creatively manage both operational and research demands and opportunities of the facility, thus staying 'on task' in Bion's group dynamics terminology. The understanding that Biosphere 2 was their life support system may also have helped the mission to succeed. Insights from the Biosphere 2 experience can help space and remote missions cope successfully with the inherent challenges of small, isolated crews. Copyright © 2015 The Committee on

  8. Imperfect Isolation: Factors and Filters Shaping Madagascar’s Extant Vertebrate Fauna

    Science.gov (United States)

    Samonds, Karen E.; Godfrey, Laurie R.; Ali, Jason R.; Goodman, Steven M.; Vences, Miguel; Sutherland, Michael R.; Irwin, Mitchell T.; Krause, David W.

    2013-01-01

    Analyses of phylogenetic topology and estimates of divergence timing have facilitated a reconstruction of Madagascar’s colonization events by vertebrate animals, but that information alone does not reveal the major factors shaping the island’s biogeographic history. Here, we examine profiles of Malagasy vertebrate clades through time within the context of the island’s paleogeographical evolution to determine how particular events influenced the arrival of the island’s extant groups. First we compare vertebrate profiles on Madagascar before and after selected events; then we compare tetrapod profiles on Madagascar to contemporary tetrapod compositions globally. We show that changes from the Mesozoic to the Cenozoic in the proportions of Madagascar’s tetrapod clades (particularly its increase in the representation of birds and mammals) are tied to changes in their relative proportions elsewhere on the globe. Differences in the representation of vertebrate classes from the Mesozoic to the Cenozoic reflect the effects of extinction (i.e., the non-random susceptibility of the different vertebrate clades to purported catastrophic global events 65 million years ago), and new evolutionary opportunities for a subset of vertebrates with the relatively high potential for transoceanic dispersal potential. In comparison, changes in vertebrate class representation during the Cenozoic are minor. Despite the fact that the island’s isolation has resulted in high vertebrate endemism and a unique and taxonomically imbalanced extant vertebrate assemblage (both hailed as testimony to its long isolation), that isolation was never complete. Indeed, Madagascar’s extant tetrapod fauna owes more to colonization during the Cenozoic than to earlier arrivals. Madagascar’s unusual vertebrate assemblage needs to be understood with reference to the basal character of clades originating prior to the K-T extinction, as well as to the differential transoceanic dispersal advantage of

  9. Biosphere reserves - an attempt to form sustainable landscapes (A case study of three biosphere reserves in the Czech Republic)

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Kušová, Drahomíra; Těšitel, Jan; Matějka, K.; Bartoš, Michael

    2008-01-01

    Roč. 84, č. 1 (2008), s. 38-51 ISSN 0169-2046 R&D Projects: GA MŽP(CZ) SM/610/3/03 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60870520 Keywords : biosphere reserve * nature protection * socio-economic development * sustainable development * triangulation Subject RIV: DO - Wilderness Conservation Impact factor: 1.953, year: 2008

  10. WEB-DHM: A distributed biosphere hydrological model developed by coupling a simple biosphere scheme with a hillslope hydrological model

    Science.gov (United States)

    The coupling of land surface models and hydrological models potentially improves the land surface representation, benefiting both the streamflow prediction capabilities as well as providing improved estimates of water and energy fluxes into the atmosphere. In this study, the simple biosphere model 2...

  11. Aseptically Sampled Organics in Subsurface Rocks From the Mars Analog Rio Tinto Experiment: An Analog For The Search for Deep Subsurface Life on Mars.}

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bonaccorsi, R.; Stoker, C. R.

    2005-12-01

    The subsurface is the key environment for searching for life on planets lacking surface life. Subsurface ecosystems are of great relevance to astrobiology including the search for past/present life on Mars. The surface of Mars has conditions preventing current life but the subsurface might preserve organics and even host some life [1]. The Mars-Analog-Rio-Tinto-Experiment (MARTE) is performing a simulation of a Mars drilling experiment. This comprises conventional and robotic drilling of cores in a volcanically-hosted-massive-pyrite deposit [2] from the Iberian Pyritic Belt (IBP) and life detection experiments applying anti-contamination protocols (e.g., ATP Luminometry assay). The RT is considered an important analog of the Sinus Meridiani site on Mars and an ideal model analog for a deep subsurface Martian environment. Former results from MARTE suggest the existence of a relatively complex subsurface life including aerobic and anaerobic chemoautotrophs and strict anaerobic methanogens sustained by Fe and S minerals in anoxic conditions. A key requirement for the analysis of a subsurface sample on Mars is a set of simple tests that can help determine if the sample contains organic material of biological origin, and its potential for retaining definitive biosignatures. We report here on the presence of bulk organic matter Corg (0.03-0.05 Wt%), and Ntot (0.01-0.04 Wt%) and amount of measured ATP (Lightning MVP, Biocontrol) in weathered rocks (tuffs, gossan, pyrite stockwork from Borehole #8; >166m). This provides key insight on the type of trophic system sustaining the subsurface biosphere (i.e., heterotrophs vs. autotrophs) at RT. ATP data (Relative-Luminosity-Units, RLU) provide information on possible contamination and distribution of viable biomass with core depth (BH#8, and BH#7, ~3m). Avg. 153 RLU, i.e., surface vs. center of core, suggest that cleaness/sterility can be maintained when using a simple sterile protocol under field conditions. Results from this

  12. Plutonium in the environment. Can we predict its subsurface behavior?

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kersting, Annie [Glenn T. Seaborg Institute, Lawrence Livermore National Laborartory, CA (United States)

    2015-07-01

    There is an acute need to expedite progress toward a permanent storage facility that can safely isolated long-lived radionuclides from the biosphere. Significant uncertainty remains on how to safely store long-lived radionuclides that will make up the majority of the dose after a few hundred years.Plutonium (Pu) is of particular interest because of its high toxicity and long half life (t1/2 239Pu 2.4 x104 yrs). The chemical interactions of Pu are dependent on its oxidation state, which in turn control its stability and solubility. Understanding the interplay (the bio-geo-chemistry) between Pu and the repository environment is necessary to predict the conditions for which Pu will either migrate or remain immobile. A mechanistic understanding of the surface structure and reactivity of coupled Pu*mineral, Pu*organic ligand, and Pu*microbe interfacial processes is needed to advance our understanding Pu. To elucidate the mechanisms controlling Pu transport, we have investigated Pu desorption rates from montmorillonite and other mineral colloids. These data suggest that Pu desorption rates are slow enough that colloid-facilitated transport of adsorbed Pu is possible at the field scale (km distances and decade timescales). Additional experiments show that the presence of organic matter plays an important role in stabilizing Pu both in solution and on mineral surfaces. Our experiments are helping to develop a conceptual model of Pu subsurface behavior.

  13. Bats (Chiroptera: Noctilionoidea) Challenge a Recent Origin of Extant Neotropical Diversity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rojas, Danny; Warsi, Omar M; Dávalos, Liliana M

    2016-05-01

    The mechanisms underlying the high extant biodiversity in the Neotropics have been controversial since the 19th century. Support for the influence of period-specific changes on diversification often rests on detecting more speciation events during a particular period. The timing of speciation events may reflect the influence of incomplete taxon sampling, protracted speciation, and null processes of lineage accumulation. Here we assess the influence of these factors on the timing of speciation with new multilocus data for New World noctilionoid bats (Chiroptera: Noctilionoidea). Biogeographic analyses revealed the importance of the Neotropics in noctilionoid diversification, and the critical role of dispersal. We detected no shift in speciation rate associated with the Quaternary or pre-Quaternary periods, and instead found an increase in speciation linked to the evolution of the subfamily Stenodermatinae (∼18 Ma). Simulations modeling constant speciation and extinction rates for the phylogeny systematically showed more speciation events in the Quaternary. Since recording more divergence events in the Quaternary can result from lineage accumulation, the age of extant sister species cannot be interpreted as supporting higher speciation rates during this period. Instead, analyzing the factors that influence speciation requires modeling lineage-specific traits and environmental, spatial, and ecological drivers of speciation. © The Author(s) 2016. Published by Oxford University Press, on behalf of the Society of Systematic Biologists. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  14. Correlates between calcaneal morphology and locomotion in extant and extinct carnivorous mammals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Panciroli, Elsa; Janis, Christine; Stockdale, Maximilian; Martín-Serra, Alberto

    2017-10-01

    Locomotor mode is an important component of an animal's ecology, relating to both habitat and substrate choice (e.g., arboreal versus terrestrial) and in the case of carnivores, to mode of predation (e.g., ambush versus pursuit). Here, we examine how the morphology of the calcaneum, the 'heel bone' in the tarsus, correlates with locomotion in extant carnivores. Other studies have confirmed the correlation of calcaneal morphology with locomotion behaviour and habitat. The robust nature of the calcaneum means that it is frequently preserved in the fossil record. Here, we employ linear measurements and 2D-geometric morphometrics on a sample of calcanea from eighty-seven extant carnivorans and demonstrate a signal of correlation between calcaneal morphology and locomotor mode that overrides phylogeny. We used this correlation to determine the locomotor mode, and hence aspects of the palaeobiology of, 47 extinct carnivorous mammal taxa, including both Carnivora and Creodonta. We found ursids (bears), clustered together, separate from the other carnivorans. Our results support greater locomotor diversity for nimravids (the extinct 'false sabertooths', usually considered to be more arboreal), than previously expected. However, there are limitations to interpretation of extinct taxa because their robust morphology is not fully captured in the range of modern carnivoran morphology. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  15. Non-reef environments impact the diversification of extant jacks, remoras and allies (Carangoidei, Percomorpha).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frédérich, Bruno; Marramà, Giuseppe; Carnevale, Giorgio; Santini, Francesco

    2016-11-16

    Various factors may impact the processes of diversification of a clade. In the marine realm, it has been shown that coral reef environments have promoted diversification in various fish groups. With the exception of requiem sharks, all the groups showing a higher level of diversity in reefs than in non-reef habitats have diets based predominantly on plankton, algae or benthic invertebrates. Here we explore the pattern of diversification of carangoid fishes, a clade that includes numerous piscivorous species (e.g. trevallies, jacks and dolphinfishes), using time-calibrated phylogenies as well as ecological and morphological data from both extant and fossil species. The study of carangoid morphospace suggests that reef environments played a role in their early radiation during the Eocene. However, contrary to the hypothesis of a reef-association-promoting effect, we show that habitat shifts to non-reef environments have increased the rates of morphological diversification (i.e. size and body shape) in extant carangoids. Piscivory did not have a major impact on the tempo of diversification of this group. Through the ecological radiation of carangoid fishes, we demonstrate that non-reef environments may sustain and promote processes of diversification of different marine fish groups, at least those including a large proportion of piscivorous species. © 2016 The Author(s).

  16. Otoliths of Five Extant Species of the Annual Killifish Nothobranchius from the East African Savannah

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reichenbacher, Bettina; Reichard, Martin

    2014-01-01

    This study presents, for the first time, a comprehensive dataset that documents the range of inter- and intraspecific otolith variation in aplocheiloid killifish, based on a total of 86 individuals representing five extant species of Nothobranchius PETERS, 1868, from East Africa: the sympatric pairs N. rubripinnis SEEGERS, 1986 and N. ruudwildekampi COSTA, 2009 (Eastern Tanzania), and N. orthonotus (PETERS, 1844) and N. furzeri JUBB, 1971 (Southern Mozambique), and two isolated populations of N. korthausae MEINKEN, 1973 (Eastern Tanzania). Otolith characters were analysed based on SEM images, and otolith morphometry was conducted using uni- and multivariate statistics. Two ancient clades of probably Early to Middle Miocene age in eastern Tanzania and southern Mozambique can be recognized based on otolith morphologies, which is consistent with previous work based on molecular data. The distinctive sulcus morphologies in the otoliths of sympatric species may be linked to species-specific hearing capabilities, perhaps constituting a case of character displacement in an area of secondary sympatry. The otoliths of the studied species of Nothobranchius are diagnostic at the species level, even in the case of closely related species diagnosable otherwise only by minor differences in coloration. The two populations of N. korthausae also displayed some differences in their otolith characters. The new data may facilitate future recognition of fossil species of Nothobranchius. As no fossil remains of extant aplocheiloid killifishes have yet been described, the discovery of fossil otoliths of Nothobranchius would significantly advance understanding of the evolutionary history of this interesting group of fishes. PMID:25383789

  17. Mapping the MMPI-2-RF Specific Problems Scales Onto Extant Psychopathology Structures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sellbom, Martin

    2017-01-01

    A main objective in developing the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory-2-Restructured Form (MMPI-2-RF; Ben-Porath & Tellegen, 2008 ) was to link the hierarchical structure of the instrument's scales to contemporary psychopathology and personality models for greater enhancement of construct validity. Initial evidence published with the Restructured Clinical scales has indicated promising results in that the higher order structure of these measures maps onto those reported in the extant psychopathology literature. This study focused on evaluating the internal structure of the Specific Problems and Interest scales, which have not yet been examined in this manner. Two large, mixed-gender outpatient and correctional samples were used. Exploratory factor analyses revealed consistent evidence for a 4-factor structure representing somatization, negative affect, externalizing, and social detachment. Convergent and discriminant validity analyses in the outpatient sample yielded a pattern of results consistent with expectations. These findings add further evidence to indicate that the MMPI-2-RF hierarchy of scales map onto extant psychopathology literature, and also add support to the notion that somatization and detachment should be considered important higher order domains in the psychopathology literature.

  18. Facial orientation and facial shape in extant great apes: a geometric morphometric analysis of covariation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Neaux, Dimitri; Guy, Franck; Gilissen, Emmanuel; Coudyzer, Walter; Vignaud, Patrick; Ducrocq, Stéphane

    2013-01-01

    The organization of the bony face is complex, its morphology being influenced in part by the rest of the cranium. Characterizing the facial morphological variation and craniofacial covariation patterns in extant hominids is fundamental to the understanding of their evolutionary history. Numerous studies on hominid facial shape have proposed hypotheses concerning the relationship between the anterior facial shape, facial block orientation and basicranial flexion. In this study we test these hypotheses in a sample of adult specimens belonging to three extant hominid genera (Homo, Pan and Gorilla). Intraspecific variation and covariation patterns are analyzed using geometric morphometric methods and multivariate statistics, such as partial least squared on three-dimensional landmarks coordinates. Our results indicate significant intraspecific covariation between facial shape, facial block orientation and basicranial flexion. Hominids share similar characteristics in the relationship between anterior facial shape and facial block orientation. Modern humans exhibit a specific pattern in the covariation between anterior facial shape and basicranial flexion. This peculiar feature underscores the role of modern humans' highly-flexed basicranium in the overall integration of the cranium. Furthermore, our results are consistent with the hypothesis of a relationship between the reduction of the value of the cranial base angle and a downward rotation of the facial block in modern humans, and to a lesser extent in chimpanzees.

  19. Stable Isotope Analysis of Extant Lamnoid Shark Centra: A New Tool in Age Determination?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Labs, J.

    2003-12-01

    The oxygen isotopes of fourteen vertebral centra from ten extant lamnoid sharks (including Carcharodon carcharias [great white], Isurus paucus [longfin mako], and Isurus oxyrinchus [shortfin mako]) were sampled and measured along the growth axis to determine the periodicity of incremental growth represented in the centra. As part of the internal (endochondral) skeleton, shark centra are composed initially of hyaline cartilage, which then secondarily ossifies during ontogeny forming calcified hydroxyapatite bone. The incremental growth of shark centra forms definite growth rings, with darker denser portions being deposited during slower growth times (i.e., winter) and lighter portions being deposited during more rapid growth (i.e., summer). Thus, shark centra, whether they are extant or extinct, are characterized by clearly delineated incremental growth couplets. The problem with this general rule is that there are several factors in which the growth of these couplets can vary depending upon physical environment (including temperature and water depth), food availability, and stress. The challenge for paleobiological interpretations is how to interpret the periodicity of this growth. It can generally be assumed that these bands are annual, but it is uncertain the extent to which exceptions to the rule occur. Stable isotopic analysis provides the potential to independently determine the periodicity of the growth increments and ultimately the ontogenetic age of an individual.

  20. Phylogenetic signal from rearrangements in 18 Anopheles species by joint scaffolding extant and ancestral genomes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anselmetti, Yoann; Duchemin, Wandrille; Tannier, Eric; Chauve, Cedric; Bérard, Sèverine

    2018-05-09

    Genomes rearrangements carry valuable information for phylogenetic inference or the elucidation of molecular mechanisms of adaptation. However, the detection of genome rearrangements is often hampered by current deficiencies in data and methods: Genomes obtained from short sequence reads have generally very fragmented assemblies, and comparing multiple gene orders generally leads to computationally intractable algorithmic questions. We present a computational method, ADSEQ, which, by combining ancestral gene order reconstruction, comparative scaffolding and de novo scaffolding methods, overcomes these two caveats. ADSEQ provides simultaneously improved assemblies and ancestral genomes, with statistical supports on all local features. Compared to previous comparative methods, it runs in polynomial time, it samples solutions in a probabilistic space, and it can handle a significantly larger gene complement from the considered extant genomes, with complex histories including gene duplications and losses. We use ADSEQ to provide improved assemblies and a genome history made of duplications, losses, gene translocations, rearrangements, of 18 complete Anopheles genomes, including several important malaria vectors. We also provide additional support for a differentiated mode of evolution of the sex chromosome and of the autosomes in these mosquito genomes. We demonstrate the method's ability to improve extant assemblies accurately through a procedure simulating realistic assembly fragmentation. We study a debated issue regarding the phylogeny of the Gambiae complex group of Anopheles genomes in the light of the evolution of chromosomal rearrangements, suggesting that the phylogenetic signal they carry can differ from the phylogenetic signal carried by gene sequences, more prone to introgression.

  1. Extant primitively segmented spiders have recently diversified from an ancient lineage.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Xin; Liu, Fengxiang; Cheng, Ren-Chung; Chen, Jian; Xu, Xiang; Zhang, Zhisheng; Ono, Hirotsugu; Pham, Dinh Sac; Norma-Rashid, Y; Arnedo, Miquel A; Kuntner, Matjaž; Li, Daiqin

    2015-06-07

    Living fossils are lineages that have retained plesiomorphic traits through long time periods. It is expected that such lineages have both originated and diversified long ago. Such expectations have recently been challenged in some textbook examples of living fossils, notably in extant cycads and coelacanths. Using a phylogenetic approach, we tested the patterns of the origin and diversification of liphistiid spiders, a clade of spiders considered to be living fossils due to their retention of arachnid plesiomorphies and their exclusive grouping in Mesothelae, an ancient clade sister to all modern spiders. Facilitated by original sampling throughout their Asian range, we here provide the phylogenetic framework necessary for reconstructing liphistiid biogeographic history. All phylogenetic analyses support the monophyly of Liphistiidae and of eight genera. As the fossil evidence supports a Carboniferous Euramerican origin of Mesothelae, our dating analyses postulate a long eastward over-land dispersal towards the Asian origin of Liphistiidae during the Palaeogene (39-58 Ma). Contrary to expectations, diversification within extant liphistiid genera is relatively recent, in the Neogene and Late Palaeogene (4-24 Ma). While no over-water dispersal events are needed to explain their evolutionary history, the history of liphistiid spiders has the potential to play prominently in vicariant biogeographic studies. © 2015 The Author(s) Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved.

  2. The past, present and future supernova threat to Earth's biosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beech, Martin

    2011-12-01

    A brief review of the threat posed to Earth's biosphere via near-by supernova detonations is presented. The expected radiation dosage, cosmic ray flux and expanding blast wave collision effects are considered, and it is argued that a typical supernova must be closer than ˜10-pc before any appreciable and potentially harmful atmosphere/biosphere effects are likely to occur. In contrast, the critical distance for Gamma-ray bursts is of order 1-kpc. In spite of the high energy effects potentially involved, the geological record provides no clear-cut evidence for any historic supernova induced mass extinctions and/or strong climate change episodes. This, however, is mostly a reflection of their being numerous possible (terrestrial and astronomical) forcing mechanisms acting upon the biosphere and the difficulty of distinguishing between competing scenarios. Key to resolving this situation, it is suggested, is the development of supernova specific extinction and climate change linked ecological models. Moving to the future, we estimate that over the remaining lifetime of the biosphere (˜2 Gyr) the Earth might experience 1 GRB and 20 supernova detonations within their respective harmful threat ranges. There are currently at least 12 potential pre-supernova systems within 1-kpc of the Sun. Of these systems IK Pegasi is the closest Type Ia pre-supernova candidate and Betelgeuse is the closest potential Type II supernova candidate. We review in some detail the past, present and future behavior of these two systems. Developing a detailed evolutionary model we find that IK Pegasi will likely not detonate until some 1.9 billion years hence, and that it affords absolutely no threat to Earth's biosphere. Betelgeuse is the closest, reasonably well understood, pre-supernova candidate to the Sun at the present epoch, and may undergo detonation any time within the next several million years. The stand-off distance of Betelgeuse at the time of its detonation is estimated to fall

  3. Models for dose assessments. Modules for various biosphere types

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bergstroem, U.; Nordlinder, S.; Aggeryd, I. [Studsvik Eco and Safety AB, Nykoeping (Sweden)

    1999-12-01

    The main objective of this study was to provide a basis for illustrations of yearly dose rates to the most exposed individual from hypothetical leakages of radionuclides from a deep bedrock repository for spent nuclear fuel and other radioactive waste. The results of this study will be used in the safety assessment SR 97 and in a study on the design and long-term safety for a repository planned to contain long-lived low and intermediate level waste. The repositories will be designed to isolate the radionuclides for several hundred thousands of years. In the SR 97 study, however, hypothetical scenarios for leakage are postulated. Radionuclides are hence assumed to be transported in the geosphere by groundwater, and probably discharge into the biosphere. This may occur in several types of ecosystems. A number of categories of such ecosystems were identified, and turnover of radionuclides was modelled separately for each ecosystem. Previous studies had focused on generic models for wells, lakes and coastal areas. These models were, in this study, developed further to use site-specific data. In addition, flows of groundwater, containing radionuclides, to agricultural land and peat bogs were considered. All these categories are referred to as modules in this report. The forest ecosystems were not included, due to a general lack of knowledge of biospheric processes in connection with discharge of groundwater in forested areas. Examples of each type of module were run with the assumption of a continuous annual release into the biosphere of 1 Bq for each radionuclide during 10 000 years. The results are presented as ecosystem specific dose conversion factors (EDFs) for each nuclide at the year 10 000, assuming stationary ecosystems and prevailing living conditions and habits. All calculations were performed with uncertainty analyses included. Simplifications and assumptions in the modelling of biospheric processes are discussed. The use of modules may be seen as a step

  4. Exploring frontiers of the deep biosphere through scientific ocean drilling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Inagaki, F.; D'Hondt, S.; Hinrichs, K. U.

    2015-12-01

    Since the first deep biosphere-dedicated Ocean Drilling Program (ODP) Leg 201 using the US drill ship JOIDES Resolution in 2002, scientific ocean drilling has offered unique opportunities to expand our knowledge of the nature and extent of the deep biosphere. The latest estimate of the global subseafloor microbial biomass is ~1029cells, accounting for 4 Gt of carbon and ~1% of the Earth's total living biomass. The subseafloor microbial communities are evolutionarily diverse and their metabolic rates are extraordinarily slow. Nevertheless, accumulating activity most likely plays a significant role in elemental cycles over geological time. In 2010, during Integrated Ocean Drilling Program (IODP) Expedition 329, the JOIDES Resolutionexplored the deep biosphere in the open-ocean South Pacific Gyre—the largest oligotrophic province on our planet. During Expedition 329, relatively high concentrations of dissolved oxygen and significantly low biomass of microbial populations were observed in the entire sediment column, indicating that (i) there is no limit to life in open-ocean sediment and (ii) a significant amount of oxygen reaches through the sediment to the upper oceanic crust. This "deep aerobic biosphere" inhabits the sediment throughout up to ~37 percent of the world's oceans. The remaining ~63 percent of the oceans is comprised of higher productivity areas that contain the "deep anaerobic biosphere". In 2012, during IODP Expedition 337, the Japanese drill ship Chikyu explored coal-bearing sediments down to 2,466 meters below the seafloor off the Shimokita Peninsula, Japan. Geochemical and microbiological analyses consistently showed the occurrence of methane-producing communities associated with the coal beds. Cell concentrations in deep sediments were notably lower than those expected from the global regression line, implying that the bottom of the deep biosphere is approached in these beds. Taxonomic composition of the deep coal-bearing communities profoundly

  5. Models for dose assessments. Modules for various biosphere types

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bergstroem, U.; Nordlinder, S.; Aggeryd, I.

    1999-12-01

    The main objective of this study was to provide a basis for illustrations of yearly dose rates to the most exposed individual from hypothetical leakages of radionuclides from a deep bedrock repository for spent nuclear fuel and other radioactive waste. The results of this study will be used in the safety assessment SR 97 and in a study on the design and long-term safety for a repository planned to contain long-lived low and intermediate level waste. The repositories will be designed to isolate the radionuclides for several hundred thousands of years. In the SR 97 study, however, hypothetical scenarios for leakage are postulated. Radionuclides are hence assumed to be transported in the geosphere by groundwater, and probably discharge into the biosphere. This may occur in several types of ecosystems. A number of categories of such ecosystems were identified, and turnover of radionuclides was modelled separately for each ecosystem. Previous studies had focused on generic models for wells, lakes and coastal areas. These models were, in this study, developed further to use site-specific data. In addition, flows of groundwater, containing radionuclides, to agricultural land and peat bogs were considered. All these categories are referred to as modules in this report. The forest ecosystems were not included, due to a general lack of knowledge of biospheric processes in connection with discharge of groundwater in forested areas. Examples of each type of module were run with the assumption of a continuous annual release into the biosphere of 1 Bq for each radionuclide during 10 000 years. The results are presented as ecosystem specific dose conversion factors (EDFs) for each nuclide at the year 10 000, assuming stationary ecosystems and prevailing living conditions and habits. All calculations were performed with uncertainty analyses included. Simplifications and assumptions in the modelling of biospheric processes are discussed. The use of modules may be seen as a step

  6. Microbial activity in the terrestrial subsurface

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kaiser, J.P.; Bollag, J.M.

    1990-01-01

    Little is known about the layers under the earth's crust. Only in recent years have techniques for sampling the deeper subsurface been developed to permit investigation of the subsurface environment. Prevailing conditions in the subsurface habitat such as nutrient availability, soil composition, redox potential, permeability and a variety of other factors can influence the microflora that flourish in a given environment. Microbial diversity varies between geological formations, but in general sandy soils support growth better than soils rich in clay. Bacteria predominate in subsurface sediments, while eukaryotes constitute only 1-2% of the microorganisms. Recent investigations revealed that most uncontaminated subsurface soils support the growth of aerobic heteroorganotrophic bacteria, but obviously anaerobic microorganisms also exist in the deeper subsurface habitat. The microorganisms residing below the surface of the earth are capable of degrading both natural and xenobiotic contaminants and can thereby adapt to growth under polluted conditions. (author) 4 tabs, 77 refs

  7. Complex Systems Science for Subsurface Fate and Transport Report from the August 2009 Workshop

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2010-01-01

    The subsurface environment, which encompasses the vadose and saturated zones, is a heterogeneous, geologically complex domain. Believed to contain a large percentage of Earth's biomass in the form of microorganisms, the subsurface is a dynamic zone where important biogeochemical cycles work to sustain life. Actively linked to the atmosphere and biosphere through the hydrologic and carbon cycles, the subsurface serves as a storage location for much of Earth's fresh water. Coupled hydrological, microbiological, and geochemical processes occurring within the subsurface environment cause the local and regional natural chemical fluxes that govern water quality. These processes play a vital role in the formation of soil, economically important fossil fuels, mineral deposits, and other natural resources. Cleaning up Department of Energy (DOE) lands impacted by legacy wastes and using the subsurface for carbon sequestration or nuclear waste isolation require a firm understanding of these processes and the documented means to characterize the vertical and spatial distribution of subsurface properties directing water, nutrient, and contaminant flows. This information, along with credible, predictive models that integrate hydrological, microbiological, and geochemical knowledge over a range of scales, is needed to forecast the sustainability of subsurface water systems and to devise ways to manage and manipulate dynamic in situ processes for beneficial outcomes. Predictive models provide the context for knowledge integration. They are the primary tools for forecasting the evolving geochemistry or microbial ecology of groundwater under various scenarios and for assessing and optimizing the potential effectiveness of proposed approaches to carbon sequestration, waste isolation, or environmental remediation. An iterative approach of modeling and experimentation can reveal powerful insights into the behavior of subsurface systems. State-of-science understanding codified in models

  8. An extensive phase space for the potential martian biosphere.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, Eriita G; Lineweaver, Charles H; Clarke, Jonathan D

    2011-12-01

    We present a comprehensive model of martian pressure-temperature (P-T) phase space and compare it with that of Earth. Martian P-T conditions compatible with liquid water extend to a depth of ∼310 km. We use our phase space model of Mars and of terrestrial life to estimate the depths and extent of the water on Mars that is habitable for terrestrial life. We find an extensive overlap between inhabited terrestrial phase space and martian phase space. The lower martian surface temperatures and shallower martian geotherm suggest that, if there is a hot deep biosphere on Mars, it could extend 7 times deeper than the ∼5 km depth of the hot deep terrestrial biosphere in the crust inhabited by hyperthermophilic chemolithotrophs. This corresponds to ∼3.2% of the volume of present-day Mars being potentially habitable for terrestrial-like life.

  9. Pharmaceutical Residues Affecting the UNESCO Biosphere Reserve Kristianstads Vattenrike Wetlands

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Björklund, Erland; Svahn, Ola; Bak, Søren Alex

    2016-01-01

    This study is the first to investigate the pharmaceutical burden from point sources affecting the UNESCO Biosphere Reserve Kristianstads Vattenrike, Sweden. The investigated Biosphere Reserve is a >1000 km(2) wetland system with inflows from lakes, rivers, leachate from landfill, and wastewater......-treatment plants (WWTPs). We analysed influent and treated wastewater, leachate water, lake, river, and wetland water alongside sediment for six model pharmaceuticals. The two WWTPs investigated released pharmaceutical residues at levels close to those previously observed in Swedish monitoring exercises. Compound......-dependent WWTP removal efficiencies ranging from 12 to 100 % for bendroflumethiazide, oxazepam, atenolol, carbamazepine, and diclofenac were observed. Surface-water concentrations in the most affected lake were ≥100 ng/L for the various pharmaceuticals with atenolol showing the highest levels (>300 ng...

  10. Information in the Biosphere: Biological and Digital Worlds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gillings, Michael R; Hilbert, Martin; Kemp, Darrell J

    2016-03-01

    Evolution has transformed life through key innovations in information storage and replication, including RNA, DNA, multicellularity, and culture and language. We argue that the carbon-based biosphere has generated a cognitive system (humans) capable of creating technology that will result in a comparable evolutionary transition. Digital information has reached a similar magnitude to information in the biosphere. It increases exponentially, exhibits high-fidelity replication, evolves through differential fitness, is expressed through artificial intelligence (AI), and has facility for virtually limitless recombination. Like previous evolutionary transitions, the potential symbiosis between biological and digital information will reach a critical point where these codes could compete via natural selection. Alternatively, this fusion could create a higher-level superorganism employing a low-conflict division of labor in performing informational tasks. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. Building capital through bioregional planning and biosphere reserves

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David Brunckhorst

    2001-02-01

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT: The need to implement innovative approaches to sustainability is now more critical than ever. This discussion draws on parts of the puzzle that must be assembled to achieve integrated, cross-tenure and jurisdictional management of whole regions and their peoples for a sustainable future. A regional, landscape ecology approach helps us to move on from theory and historical lessons to boldly design and adaptively develop novel on-ground models. To take an entirely different approach from conventional thinking, I draw from Common Property Resource (CPR theory and experience, together with practical experience from the Bookmark Biosphere project. The characteristics of successful enduring Common Property regimes are identified and discussed in light of critical needs to maintain and restore social and ecological capital. I then highlight the concepts and logistical objectives behind the 30-year-old UNESCO Biosphere Reserve Program, which appears to have great potential as an operational framework within which these changes can be made. The Biosphere Reserve Program is maturing through integration of cultural needs and aspirations for quality of life, while conserving natural values and ecosystem processes. In particular, progress is being made through bioregional planning and management incorporating a variety of IUCN protected area types with novel, sustainable, resource-use diversification. The novel arrangements, experience and lessons from one developing model, Bookmark Biosphere Reserve in South Australia, are described as an example. I wish to encourage more models like the Bookmark experiment to evolve through even greater creativity and engagement with public and private partners. On-ground models that demonstrate innovative alternative land use management in the rangelands or integration across the coastal-marine interface are especially needed.

  12. Radioactive waste management. International projects on biosphere modelling

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Carboneras, P.; Cancio, D.

    1993-01-01

    The paper presents a general overview and discussion on the state of art concerning the biospheric transfer and accumulation of contaminants. A special emphasis is given to the progress achieved in the field of radioactive contaminants and particularly to those implied in radioactive waste disposal. The objectives and advances of the international projects BIOMOVS and VAMP on validation of model predictions are also described. (Author)

  13. Technical Review of the Laboratory Biosphere Closed Ecological System Facility

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dempster, W.; van Thillo, M.; Alling, A.; Allen, J.; Silverstone, S.; Nelson, M.

    The "Laboratory Biosphere", a new closed ecological system facility in Santa Fe, New Mexico (USA) has been constructed and became operational in May 2002. Built and operated by the Global Ecotechnics consortium (Biosphere Technologies and Biosphere Foundation with Biospheric Design Inc., and the Institute of Ecotechnics), the research apparatus for intensive crop growth, biogeochemical cycle dynamics and recycling of inedible crop biomass comprises a sealed cylindrical steel chamber and attached variable volume chamber (lung) to prevent pressures caused by the expansion and contraction of the contained air. The cylindrical growing chamber is 3.7m (12 feet) long and 3.7m (12 foot) diameter, giving an internal volume of 34 m3 (1200 ft 3 ). The two crop growth beds cover 5.5 m2, with a soil depth of 0.3m (12 inches), with 12 x 1000 watt high-pressure sodium lights capable of variable lighting of 40-70 mol per m2 per day. A small soil bed reactor in the chamber can be activated to help with metabolism of chamber trace gases. The volume of the attached variable volume chamber (lung) can range between 0-11 m3 (0-400 ft 3 ). Evapotranspired and soil leachate water are collected, combined and recycled to water the planting beds. Sampling ports enable testing of water quality of leachate, condensate and irrigation water. Visual inspection windows provide views of the entire interior and growing beds. The chamber is also outfitted with an airlock to minimize air exchange when people enter and work in the chamber. Continuous sensors include atmospheric CO2 and oxygen, temperature, humidity, soil moisture, light level and water levels in reservoirs. Both "sniffer" (air ports) and "sipper" (water ports) will enable collection of water or air samples for detailed analysis. This paper reports on the development of this new soil-based bioregenerative life support closed system apparatus and its technical challenges and capabilities.

  14. Guatemala conservation concession for the Maya Biosphere Reserve

    OpenAIRE

    Conservation International

    2007-01-01

    Metadata only record The national government of Guatemala has issued timber concessions to local communities within its 2 million hectare Maya Biosphere Reserve. Working under this framework, CI is proposing a conservation concession contract with two communities. The concessions would be designed to pay salaries for conservation managers, to invest in projects such as guiding tourists to nearby archaeological sites and to provide community services such as education and health care, in ex...

  15. Development of the biosphere code BIOMOD: final report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kane, P.

    1983-05-01

    Final report to DoE on the development of the biosphere code BIOMOD. The work carried out under the contract is itemised. Reference is made to the six documents issued along with the final report. These consist of two technical notes issued as interim consultative documents, a user's guide and a programmer's guide to BIOMOD, a database description, program test document and a technical note entitled ''BIOMOD - preliminary findings''. (author)

  16. SeaWiFS Third Anniversary Global Biosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    2002-01-01

    September 18,2000 is the third anniversary of the start of regular SeaWiFS operations of this remarkable planet called Earth. This SeaWiFS image is of the Global Biosphere depicting the ocean's long-term average phytoplankton chlorophyll concentration acquired between September 1997 and August 2000 combined with the SeaWiFS-derived Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) over land during July 2000.

  17. Marine Subsurface Microbial Communities Across a Hydrothermal Gradient in Okinawa Trough Sediments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brandt, L. D.; Hser Wah Saw, J.; Ettema, T.; House, C. H.

    2015-12-01

    IODP Expedition 331 to the Okinawa backarc basin provided an opportunity to study the microbial stratigraphy within the sediments surrounding a hydrothermal vent. The Okinawa backarc basin is a sedimented region of the seafloor located on a continental margin, and also hosts a hydrothermal network within the subsurface. Site C0014 within the Iheya North hydrothermal field is located 450 m east of the active vent and has a surface temperature of 5°C with no evidence of hydrothermal alteration within the top 10 meters below sea floor (mbsf). Temperature increases with depth at an estimated rate of 3°C/m and transitions from non-hydrothermal margin sediments to a hydrothermally altered regime below 10 mbsf. In this study, we utilized deep 16S rRNA sequencing of DNA from IODP Expedition 331 Site C0014 sediment horizons in order to assess diversity throughout the sediment column as well as determine the potential limits of the biosphere. Analysis of the amplicon data shows a shift over 15 mbsf from a heterogeneous community of cosmopolitan marine subsurface taxa toward an archaeal-dominated community in the deepest horizons of the predicted biosphere. Notably, the phylum Chloroflexi represents a substantial taxon through most horizons, where it appears to be replaced below 10 mbsf by punctuations of thermophilic and methanotrophic Archaea and Miscellaneous Crenarchaeotic Group abundances. DNA from the aforementioned transition horizons was further analyzed using metagenomic sequencing. Preliminary taxonomic analysis of the metagenomic data agrees well with amplicon data in capturing the shift in relative abundance of Archaea increasing with depth. Additionally, reverse gyrase, a gene found exclusively in hyperthermophilic microorganisms, was recovered only in the metagenome of the deepest horizon. A BLAST search of this protein sequence against the GenBank non-redudnant protein database produced top hits with reverse gyrase from Thermococcus and Pyrococcus, which are

  18. High-pressure hydrogen respiration in hydrothermal vent samples from the deep biosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morgan-Smith, D.; Schrenk, M. O.

    2013-12-01

    Cultivation of organisms from the deep biosphere has met with many challenges, chief among them the ability to replicate this extreme environment in a laboratory setting. The maintenance of in situ pressure levels, carbon sources, and gas concentrations are important, intertwined factors which may all affect the growth of subsurface microorganisms. Hydrogen in particular is of great importance in hydrothermal systems, but in situ hydrogen concentrations are largely disregarded in attempts to culture from these sites. Using modified Hungate-type culture tubes (Bowles et al. 2011) within pressure-retaining vessels, which allow for the dissolution of higher concentrations of gas than is possible with other culturing methods, we have incubated hydrothermal chimney and hydrothermally-altered rock samples from the Lost City and Mid-Cayman Rise hydrothermal vent fields. Hydrogen concentrations up to 15 mmol/kg have been reported from Lost City (Kelley et al. 2005), but data are not yet available from the recently-discovered Mid-Cayman site, and the elevated concentration of 30 mmol/kg is being used in all incubations. We are using a variety of media types to enrich for various metabolic pathways including iron and sulfur reduction under anoxic or microaerophilic conditions. Incubations are being carried out at atmospheric (0.1 MPa), in situ (9, 23, or 50 MPa, depending on site), and elevated (50 MPa) pressure levels. Microbial cell concentrations, taxonomic diversity, and metabolic activities are being monitored during the course of these experiments. These experiments will provide insight into the relationships between microbial activities, pressure, and gas concentrations typical of deep biosphere environments. Results will inform further culturing studies from both fresh and archived samples. References cited: Bowles, M.W., Samarkin, V.A., Joye, S.B. 2011. Improved measurement of microbial activity in deep-sea sediments at in situ pressure and methane concentration

  19. Illstrative probabilistic biosphere model for Yucca Mountain individual risk calculations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wilems, R.E.

    1994-01-01

    The proposed EPA Standards for the disposal of spent fuel, high-level and transuranic radioactive waste prescribe future biosphere--one in which no sustained human activity occurs inside the controlled zone, yet sustained use of groundwater occurs just outside the controlled zone boundary. Performance assessments have generally assumed a person at this location extracts all his water needs directly from the projected contaminated plume for all of his life. Dose to this maximally-exposed individual is too conservative a measure of performance for a nuclear waste repository and does not reflect the isolation characteristics of a site. A better measure is individual risk in which uncertainties in biosphere characteristics for the longer periods of performance, for a site like Yucca Mountain only those characteristics associated with well water scenarios need be prescribed. Such a prescription of the biosphere is appropriate because the goal of the regulations is to provide indicators of future performance so the regulators can make a responsible decision regarding reasonable assurance of public health and safety

  20. Biosphere model for assessing doses from nuclear waste disposal

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zach, R.; Amiro, B.D.; Davis, P.A.; Sheppard, S.C.; Szekeley, J.G.

    1994-01-01

    The biosphere model, BIOTRAC, for predicting long term nuclide concentrations and radiological doses from Canada's nuclear fuel waste disposal concept of a vault deep in plutonic rock of the Canadian Shield is presented. This generic, boreal zone biosphere model is based on scenario analysis and systems variability analysis using Monte Carlo simulation techniques. Conservatism is used to bridge uncertainties, even though this creates a small amount of extra nuclide mass. Environmental change over the very long assessment period is mainly handled through distributed parameter values. The dose receptors are a critical group of humans and four generic non-human target organisms. BIOTRAC includes six integrated submodels and it interfaces smoothly with a geosphere model. This interface includes a bedrock well. The geosphere model defines the discharge zones of deep groundwater where nuclides released from the vault enter the biosphere occupied by the dose receptors. The size of one of these zones is reduced when water is withdrawn from the bedrock well. Sensitivity analysis indicates 129 I is by far the most important radionuclide. Results also show bedrock-well water leads to higher doses to man than lake water, but the former doses decrease with the size of the critical group. Under comparable circumstances, doses to the non-human biota are greater than those for man

  1. Nuclear fuel waste management - biosphere program highlights - 1978 to 1996

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Zach, R

    1997-07-01

    The biosphere program in support of the development of the disposal concept for Canadian nuclear fuel waste since 1978 is scheduled for close-out. AECL`s Environmental Science Branch (ESB) was mainly responsible for work in this program. In order to preserve as much information as possible, this report highlights many of the key achievements of the program, particularly those related to the development of the BIOTRAC biosphere model and its supporting research. This model was used for the assessment and review of the disposal concept in an environmental impact statement (EIS). The report also treats highlights related to alternative models, external scientific/technical reviews, EIS feedback, and the international BIOMOVS model validation program. Furthermore, it highlights basic aspects of future modelling and research needs in relation to siting a disposal facility. In this, feedback from the various reviews and the EIS is taken into account. Appendices of the report include listings of key ESB staff involved in the program, all the scientific/technical reports and papers produced under the program, contracts let to outside agencies, and issues raised by various participants or intervenors during the EIS review. Although the report is concerned with close-out of the biosphere program, it also provides valuable information for a continuing program concerned with siting a disposal facility. One of the conclusions of the report is that such a program is essential for successfully siting such a facility. (author) Refs.

  2. Nuclear fuel waste management - biosphere program highlights - 1978 to 1996

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zach, R.

    1997-07-01

    The biosphere program in support of the development of the disposal concept for Canadian nuclear fuel waste since 1978 is scheduled for close-out. AECL's Environmental Science Branch (ESB) was mainly responsible for work in this program. In order to preserve as much information as possible, this report highlights many of the key achievements of the program, particularly those related to the development of the BIOTRAC biosphere model and its supporting research. This model was used for the assessment and review of the disposal concept in an environmental impact statement (EIS). The report also treats highlights related to alternative models, external scientific/technical reviews, EIS feedback, and the international BIOMOVS model validation program. Furthermore, it highlights basic aspects of future modelling and research needs in relation to siting a disposal facility. In this, feedback from the various reviews and the EIS is taken into account. Appendices of the report include listings of key ESB staff involved in the program, all the scientific/technical reports and papers produced under the program, contracts let to outside agencies, and issues raised by various participants or intervenors during the EIS review. Although the report is concerned with close-out of the biosphere program, it also provides valuable information for a continuing program concerned with siting a disposal facility. One of the conclusions of the report is that such a program is essential for successfully siting such a facility. (author)

  3. A Search for Life in the Subsurface At Rio Tinto Spain, An Analog To Searching For Life On Mars.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stoker, C. R.

    2003-12-01

    Most familiar life forms on Earth live in the surface biosphere where liquid water, sunlight, and the essential chemical elements for life are abundant. However, such environments are not found on Mars or anywhere else in the solar system. On Mars, the surface environmental conditions of pressure and temperature prevent formation of liquid water. Furthermore, conditions at the Martian surface are unfavorable to life due to intense ultraviolet radiation and strong oxidizing compounds that destroy organic compounds. However, subsurface liquid water on Mars has been predicted on theoretical grounds. The recent discovery of near surface ground ice by the Mars Odyssey mission, and the abundant evidence for recent Gully features observed by the Mars Global Surveyor mission strengthen the case for subsurface liquid water on Mars. Thus, the strategy for searching for life on Mars points to drilling to the depth of liquid water, bringing samples to the surface and analyzing them with instrumentation to detect in situ organisms and biomarker compounds. The MARTE (Mars Astrobiology Research and Technology Experiment) project is a field experiment focused on searching for a hypothesized subsurface anaerobic chemoautotrophic biosphere in the region of the Rio Tinto, a river in southwestern Spain while also demonstrating technology relevant to searching for a subsurface biosphere on Mars. The Tinto river is located in the Iberian Pyrite belt, one of the largest deposits of sulfide minerals in the world. The surface (river) system is an acidic extreme environment produced and maintained by microbes that metabolize sulfide minerals and produce sulfuric acid as a byproduct. Evidence suggests that the river is a surface manifestation of an underground biochemical reactor. Organisms found in the river are capable of chemoautotrophic metabolism using sulfide and ferric iron mineral substrates, suggesting these organisms could thrive in groundwater which is the source of the Rio Tinto

  4. Estimating thumb–index finger precision grip and manipulation potential in extant and fossil primates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feix, Thomas; Kivell, Tracy L.; Pouydebat, Emmanuelle; Dollar, Aaron M.

    2015-01-01

    Primates, and particularly humans, are characterized by superior manual dexterity compared with other mammals. However, drawing the biomechanical link between hand morphology/behaviour and functional capabilities in non-human primates and fossil taxa has been challenging. We present a kinematic model of thumb–index precision grip and manipulative movement based on bony hand morphology in a broad sample of extant primates and fossil hominins. The model reveals that both joint mobility and digit proportions (scaled to hand size) are critical for determining precision grip and manipulation potential, but that having either a long thumb or great joint mobility alone does not necessarily yield high precision manipulation. The results suggest even the oldest available fossil hominins may have shared comparable precision grip manipulation with modern humans. In particular, the predicted human-like precision manipulation of Australopithecus afarensis, approximately one million years before the first stone tools, supports controversial archaeological evidence of tool-use in this taxon. PMID:25878134

  5. Cultivating the Deep Subsurface Microbiome

    Science.gov (United States)

    Casar, C. P.; Osburn, M. R.; Flynn, T. M.; Masterson, A.; Kruger, B.

    2017-12-01

    Subterranean ecosystems are poorly understood because many microbes detected in metagenomic surveys are only distantly related to characterized isolates. Cultivating microorganisms from the deep subsurface is challenging due to its inaccessibility and potential for contamination. The Deep Mine Microbial Observatory (DeMMO) in Lead, SD however, offers access to deep microbial life via pristine fracture fluids in bedrock to a depth of 1478 m. The metabolic landscape of DeMMO was previously characterized via thermodynamic modeling coupled with genomic data, illustrating the potential for microbial inhabitants of DeMMO to utilize mineral substrates as energy sources. Here, we employ field and lab based cultivation approaches with pure minerals to link phylogeny to metabolism at DeMMO. Fracture fluids were directed through reactors filled with Fe3O4, Fe2O3, FeS2, MnO2, and FeCO3 at two sites (610 m and 1478 m) for 2 months prior to harvesting for subsequent analyses. We examined mineralogical, geochemical, and microbiological composition of the reactors via DNA sequencing, microscopy, lipid biomarker characterization, and bulk C and N isotope ratios to determine the influence of mineralogy on biofilm community development. Pre-characterized mineral chips were imaged via SEM to assay microbial growth; preliminary results suggest MnO2, Fe3O4, and Fe2O3 were most conducive to colonization. Solid materials from reactors were used as inoculum for batch cultivation experiments. Media designed to mimic fracture fluid chemistry was supplemented with mineral substrates targeting metal reducers. DNA sequences and microscopy of iron oxide-rich biofilms and fracture fluids suggest iron oxidation is a major energy source at redox transition zones where anaerobic fluids meet more oxidizing conditions. We utilized these biofilms and fluids as inoculum in gradient cultivation experiments targeting microaerophilic iron oxidizers. Cultivation of microbes endemic to DeMMO, a system

  6. Earth's Early Biosphere and the Biogeochemical Carbon Cycle

    Science.gov (United States)

    DesMarais, David

    2004-01-01

    Our biosphere has altered the global environment principally by influencing the chemistry of those elements most important for life, e g., C, N, S, O, P and transition metals (e.g., Fe and Mn). The coupling of oxygenic photosynthesis with the burial in sediments of photosynthetic organic matter, and with the escape of H2 to space, has increased the state of oxidation of the Oceans and atmosphere. It has also created highly reduced conditions within sedimentary rocks that have also extensively affected the geochemistry of several elements. The decline of volcanism during Earth's history reduced the flow of reduced chemical species that reacted with photosynthetically produced O2. The long-term net accumulation of photosynthetic O2 via biogeochemical processes has profoundly influenced our atmosphere and biosphere, as evidenced by the O2 levels required for algae, multicellular life and certain modem aerobic bacteria to exist. When our biosphere developed photosynthesis, it tapped into an energy resource that was much larger than the energy available from oxidation-reduction reactions associated with weathering and hydrothermal activity. Today, hydrothermal sources deliver globally (0.13-1.1)x10(exp l2) mol yr(sup -1) of reduced S, Fe(2+), Mn(2+), H2 and CH4; this is estimated to sustain at most about (0.2-2)xl0(exp 12)mol C yr(sup -1) of organic carbon production by chemautotrophic microorganisms. In contrast, global photosynthetic productivity is estimated to be 9000x10(exp 12) mol C yr(sup -1). Thus, even though global thermal fluxes were greater in the distant geologic past than today, the onset of oxygenic photosynthesis probably increased global organic productivity by some two or more orders of magnitude. This enormous productivity materialized principally because oxygenic photosynthesizers unleashed a virtually unlimited supply of reduced H that forever freed life from its sole dependence upon abiotic sources of reducing power such as hydrothermal emanations

  7. "Life history space": a multivariate analysis of life history variation in extant and extinct Malagasy lemurs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Catlett, Kierstin K; Schwartz, Gary T; Godfrey, Laurie R; Jungers, William L

    2010-07-01

    Studies of primate life history variation are constrained by the fact that all large-bodied extant primates are haplorhines. However, large-bodied strepsirrhines recently existed. If we can extract life history information from their skeletons, these species can contribute to our understanding of primate life history variation. This is particularly important in light of new critiques of the classic "fast-slow continuum" as a descriptor of variation in life history profiles across mammals in general. We use established dental histological methods to estimate gestation length and age at weaning for five extinct lemur species. On the basis of these estimates, we reconstruct minimum interbirth intervals and maximum reproductive rates. We utilize principal components analysis to create a multivariate "life history space" that captures the relationships among reproductive parameters and brain and body size in extinct and extant lemurs. Our data show that, whereas large-bodied extinct lemurs can be described as "slow" in some fashion, they also varied greatly in their life history profiles. Those with relatively large brains also weaned their offspring late and had long interbirth intervals. These were not the largest of extinct lemurs. Thus, we distinguish size-related life history variation from variation that linked more strongly to ecological factors. Because all lemur species larger than 10 kg, regardless of life history profile, succumbed to extinction after humans arrived in Madagascar, we argue that large body size increased the probability of extinction independently of reproductive rate. We also provide some evidence that, among lemurs, brain size predicts reproductive rate better than body size. (c) 2010 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  8. Recovering mitochondrial DNA lineages of extinct Amerindian nations in extant homopatric Brazilian populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gonçalves, Vanessa F; Parra, Flavia C; Gonçalves-Dornelas, Higgor; Rodrigues-Carvalho, Claudia; Silva, Hilton P; Pena, Sergio Dj

    2010-12-01

    Brazilian Amerindians have experienced a drastic population decrease in the past 500 years. Indeed, many native groups from eastern Brazil have vanished. However, their mitochondrial mtDNA haplotypes, still persist in Brazilians, at least 50 million of whom carry Amerindian mitochondrial lineages. Our objective was to test whether, by analyzing extant rural populations from regions anciently occupied by specific Amerindian groups, we could identify potentially authentic mitochondrial lineages, a strategy we have named 'homopatric targeting'. We studied 173 individuals from Queixadinha, a small village located in a territory previously occupied by the now extinct Botocudo Amerindian nation. Pedigree analysis revealed 74 unrelated matrilineages, which were screened for Amerindian mtDNA lineages by restriction fragment length polymorphism. A cosmopolitan control group was composed of 100 individuals from surrounding cities. All Amerindian lineages identified had their hypervariable segment HVSI sequenced, yielding 13 Amerindian haplotypes in Queixadinha, nine of which were not present in available databanks or in the literature. Among these haplotypes, there was a significant excess of haplogroup C (70%) and absence of haplogroup A lineages, which were the most common in the control group. The novelty of the haplotypes and the excess of the C haplogroup suggested that we might indeed have identified Botocudo lineages. To validate our strategy, we studied teeth extracted from 14 ancient skulls of Botocudo Amerindians from the collection of the National Museum of Rio de Janeiro. We recovered mtDNA sequences from all the teeth, identifying only six different haplotypes (a low haplotypic diversity of 0.8352 ± 0.0617), one of which was present among the lineages observed in the extant individuals studied. These findings validate the technique of homopatric targeting as a useful new strategy to study the peopling and colonization of the New World, especially when direct

  9. Extant ape dental topography and its implications for reconstructing the emergence of early Homo.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berthaume, Michael A; Schroer, Kes

    2017-11-01

    Dental topography reflects diet accurately in several extant and extinct mammalian clades. However, dental topographic dietary reconstructions have high success rates only when closely related taxa are compared. Given the dietary breadth that exists among extant apes and likely existed among fossil hominins, dental topographic values from many species and subspecies of great apes are necessary for making dietary inferences about the hominin fossil record. Here, we present the results of one metric of dental topography, Dirichlet normal energy (DNE), for seven groups of great apes (Pongo pygmaeus pygmaeus, Pan paniscus, Pan troglodytes troglodytes and schweinfurthii, Gorilla gorilla gorilla, Gorilla beringei graueri and beringei). Dirichlet normal energy was inadequate at differentiating folivores from frugivores, but was adequate at predicting which groups had more fibrous diets among sympatric African apes. Character displacement analyses confirmed there is substantial dental topographic and relative molar size (M 1 :M 2 ratio; length, width, and area) divergence in sympatric apes when compared to their allopatric counterparts, but character displacement is only present in relative molar size when DNE is also considered. Presence of character displacement is likely due to indirect competition over similar food resources. Assuming similar ecological conditions in the Plio-Pleistocene, the derived masticatory apparatuses of the robust australopiths and early Homo may be due to indirect competition over dietary resources between the taxa, causing dietary niche partitioning. Our results imply that dental topography cannot be used to predict dietary categories in fossil hominins without consideration of ecological factors, such as dietary and geographic overlap. In addition, our results may open new avenues for understanding the community compositions of early hominins and the formation of specific ecological niches among hominin taxa. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd

  10. First discovery of the charophycean green alga Lychnothamnus barbatus (Charophyceae) extant in the New World.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karol, Kenneth G; Skawinski, Paul M; McCourt, Richard M; Nault, Michelle E; Evans, Reesa; Barton, Martha E; Berg, Matthew S; Perleberg, Donna J; Hall, John D

    2017-07-27

    Although some species of Characeae, known as stoneworts, can be found on every continent except Antarctica, many species and some genera have limited geographic distributions. The genus Lychnothamnus , represented by a single extant species L. barbatus , was known only from scattered localities in Europe and Australasia until it was recently discovered in North America. Morphological identifications were made from specimens collected in Minnesota and Wisconsin, USA. DNA sequences were obtained for three plastid-encoded genes ( atpB , psbC , rbcL ) from seven putative Lychnothamnus samples from two states in the USA Distribution and abundance were estimated in each lake using point intercept surveys where surveyors sampled aquatic vegetation. Fourteen lakes in Wisconsin and two lakes in Minnesota, USA, were found to harbor Lychnothamnus barbatus . These represent the first report of this rare charophycean extant in the New World. The North American specimens matched the morphological description for L. barbatus and were compared directly with the neotype. Phylogenetic results using three plastid-encoded genes confirmed the identification placing New World samples with those from Europe and Australasia. Our phylogenetic analyses also confirmed the sister relationship between L. barbatus and Nitellopsis obtusa . Because this taxon is not known for aggressive invasiveness in its native range, it may have existed in heretofore-undiscovered native populations, although the possibility that it is a recent introduction cannot be eliminated. The potential for discovery of novel lineages of green algae in even well-studied regions is apparently far from exhausted. © 2017 Karol et al. Published by the Botanical Society of America. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution License (CC-BY-NC).

  11. Premolar root and canal variation in extant non-human hominoidea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moore, N Collin; Hublin, Jean-Jacques; Skinner, Matthew M

    2015-08-11

    The premolar sub-cervical region in four non-human extant ape genera are examined to: 1) define a classification scheme for the premolar root system in order to rigorously characterize, quantify and document variation in root and canal, form, number and configuration; 2) compare this variation within and between genera; and 3) test the hypotheses that sex and size (i.e., the "size/number continuum," Shields, ) of the premolar are determinants of root/canal form and/or number. Microtomography and 3D visualization software are utilized to examine a large sample of Hylobates, Pan, Gorilla, and Pongo (n = 951 teeth). Each premolar root system is examined to ascertain the expected level of variability for each taxon. Cervical surface area (mm 2 ) serves as a metric proxy for tooth size. A Chi-square test of independence is used to assess for variability differences between and within each taxon, and Mann-Whitney U tests are employed to assess the predicted relationship between tooth size and variation within each taxon. Our findings indicate that root and canal configurations, non-metric root traits and tooth size can distinguish between extant ape genera. Within the four ape taxa, premolar size variation is generally, but not always, correlated with canal/root number. Our results indicate that males and females within genera differ in tooth size but not in canal/root form and number. We report previously undocumented variation in the study taxa. Our results are discussed within the context of Miocene Apes as well as the developmental and systematic implications. Am J Phys Anthropol, 2015. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  12. The extant shore platform stromatolite (SPS facies association: a glimpse into the Archean?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Smith

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Shore platform stromatolites (SPS were first noted at Cape Morgan on the south-east African seaboard. Since then they have been found growing discontinuously in rocky peritidal zones along the entire southern African seaboard. They have also been found on the southwest Australian coast, at Giant's Causeway in Northern Ireland, and more recently at Harris on the Scottish Hebridean Atlantic coast. In this paper SPS occurrence and SPS potential as analogues for Precambrian fossil stromatolites, as well as potential stromatolite occurrences in shore platform regions on Mars, are assessed. Sub-horizontal surfaces promote stromatolite development, while tufa develops on cliffs and steep rocky surfaces. Tufa and stromatolites are end members of a spectrum dictated by coastal topography. Extant SPS occur on well indurated shore platforms in high wave energy settings, often around or near headlands. They can be associated with boulder beaches, boulder ridges, storm swash terraces, coastal dunes, and peat bogs. In contrast to other extant stromatolites, SPS are produced primarily by mineral precipitation, although minor trapping and binding stromatolites do occur. From a geological perspective, SPS develop in mildly transgressive siliciclastic settings in various climatic and tidal regimes. We suggest that SPS could be preserved in the geological record as micritic lenses on palaeo-shore platform surfaces. SPS share many features with Precambrian stromatolites and are a valid modern analogue despite the widely different atmospheric and oceanic conditions of the Archean. We suggest that terraces associated with former oceanic or lacustrine flooding surfaces on Mars are potential targets in the search for palaeo-SPS on Mars.

  13. Cartilaginous epiphyses in extant archosaurs and their implications for reconstructing limb function in dinosaurs.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Casey M Holliday

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available Extinct archosaurs, including many non-avian dinosaurs, exhibit relatively simply shaped condylar regions in their appendicular bones, suggesting potentially large amounts of unpreserved epiphyseal (articular cartilage. This "lost anatomy" is often underappreciated such that the ends of bones are typically considered to be the joint surfaces, potentially having a major impact on functional interpretation. Extant alligators and birds were used to establish an objective basis for inferences about cartilaginous articular structures in such extinct archosaur clades as non-avian dinosaurs. Limb elements of alligators, ostriches, and other birds were dissected, disarticulated, and defleshed. Lengths and condylar shapes of elements with intact epiphyses were measured. Limbs were subsequently completely skeletonized and the measurements repeated. Removal of cartilaginous condylar regions resulted in statistically significant changes in element length and condylar breadth. Moreover, there was marked loss of those cartilaginous structures responsible for joint architecture and congruence. Compared to alligators, birds showed less dramatic, but still significant changes. Condylar morphologies of dinosaur limb bones suggest that most non-coelurosaurian clades possessed large cartilaginous epiphyses that relied on the maintenance of vascular channels that are otherwise eliminated early in ontogeny in smaller-bodied tetrapods. A sensitivity analysis using cartilage correction factors (CCFs obtained from extant taxa indicates that whereas the presence of cartilaginous epiphyses only moderately increases estimates of dinosaur height and speed, it has important implications for our ability to infer joint morphology, posture, and the complicated functional movements in the limbs of many extinct archosaurs. Evidence suggests that the sizes of sauropod epiphyseal cartilages surpassed those of alligators, which account for at least 10% of hindlimb length. These data

  14. Cartilaginous epiphyses in extant archosaurs and their implications for reconstructing limb function in dinosaurs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holliday, Casey M; Ridgely, Ryan C; Sedlmayr, Jayc C; Witmer, Lawrence M

    2010-09-30

    Extinct archosaurs, including many non-avian dinosaurs, exhibit relatively simply shaped condylar regions in their appendicular bones, suggesting potentially large amounts of unpreserved epiphyseal (articular) cartilage. This "lost anatomy" is often underappreciated such that the ends of bones are typically considered to be the joint surfaces, potentially having a major impact on functional interpretation. Extant alligators and birds were used to establish an objective basis for inferences about cartilaginous articular structures in such extinct archosaur clades as non-avian dinosaurs. Limb elements of alligators, ostriches, and other birds were dissected, disarticulated, and defleshed. Lengths and condylar shapes of elements with intact epiphyses were measured. Limbs were subsequently completely skeletonized and the measurements repeated. Removal of cartilaginous condylar regions resulted in statistically significant changes in element length and condylar breadth. Moreover, there was marked loss of those cartilaginous structures responsible for joint architecture and congruence. Compared to alligators, birds showed less dramatic, but still significant changes. Condylar morphologies of dinosaur limb bones suggest that most non-coelurosaurian clades possessed large cartilaginous epiphyses that relied on the maintenance of vascular channels that are otherwise eliminated early in ontogeny in smaller-bodied tetrapods. A sensitivity analysis using cartilage correction factors (CCFs) obtained from extant taxa indicates that whereas the presence of cartilaginous epiphyses only moderately increases estimates of dinosaur height and speed, it has important implications for our ability to infer joint morphology, posture, and the complicated functional movements in the limbs of many extinct archosaurs. Evidence suggests that the sizes of sauropod epiphyseal cartilages surpassed those of alligators, which account for at least 10% of hindlimb length. These data suggest that

  15. Soft-tissue anatomy of the extant hominoids: a review and phylogenetic analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gibbs, S; Collard, M; Wood, B

    2002-01-01

    This paper reports the results of a literature search for information about the soft-tissue anatomy of the extant non-human hominoid genera, Pan, Gorilla, Pongo and Hylobates, together with the results of a phylogenetic analysis of these data plus comparable data for Homo. Information on the four extant non-human hominoid genera was located for 240 out of the 1783 soft-tissue structures listed in the Nomina Anatomica. Numerically these data are biased so that information about some systems (e.g. muscles) and some regions (e.g. the forelimb) are over-represented, whereas other systems and regions (e.g. the veins and the lymphatics of the vascular system, the head region) are either under-represented or not represented at all. Screening to ensure that the data were suitable for use in a phylogenetic analysis reduced the number of eligible soft-tissue structures to 171. These data, together with comparable data for modern humans, were converted into discontinuous character states suitable for phylogenetic analysis and then used to construct a taxon-by-character matrix. This matrix was used in two tests of the hypothesis that soft-tissue characters can be relied upon to reconstruct hominoid phylogenetic relationships. In the first, parsimony analysis was used to identify cladograms requiring the smallest number of character state changes. In the second, the phylogenetic bootstrap was used to determine the confidence intervals of the most parsimonious clades. The parsimony analysis yielded a single most parsimonious cladogram that matched the molecular cladogram. Similarly the bootstrap analysis yielded clades that were compatible with the molecular cladogram; a (Homo, Pan) clade was supported by 95% of the replicates, and a (Gorilla, Pan, Homo) clade by 96%. These are the first hominoid morphological data to provide statistically significant support for the clades favoured by the molecular evidence. PMID:11833653

  16. Children's Comprehension of Object Relative Sentences: It's Extant Language Knowledge That Matters, Not Domain-General Working Memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rusli, Yazmin Ahmad; Montgomery, James W

    2017-10-17

    The aim of this study was to determine whether extant language (lexical) knowledge or domain-general working memory is the better predictor of comprehension of object relative sentences for children with typical development. We hypothesized that extant language knowledge, not domain-general working memory, is the better predictor. Fifty-three children (ages 9-11 years) completed a word-level verbal working-memory task, indexing extant language (lexical) knowledge; an analog nonverbal working-memory task, representing domain-general working memory; and a hybrid sentence comprehension task incorporating elements of both agent selection and cross-modal picture-priming paradigms. Images of the agent and patient were displayed at the syntactic gap in the object relative sentences, and the children were asked to select the agent of the sentence. Results of general linear modeling revealed that extant language knowledge accounted for a unique 21.3% of variance in the children's object relative sentence comprehension over and above age (8.3%). Domain-general working memory accounted for a nonsignificant 1.6% of variance. We interpret the results to suggest that extant language knowledge and not domain-general working memory is a critically important contributor to children's object relative sentence comprehension. Results support a connectionist view of the association between working memory and object relative sentence comprehension. https://doi.org/10.23641/asha.5404573.

  17. Drawing the subsurface : an integrative design approach

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hooimeijer, F.L.; Lafleur, F.; Trinh, T.T.; Gogu, Constantin Radu; Campbell, Diarmad; de Beer, Johannes

    2017-01-01

    The sub-surface, with its man-made and natural components, plays an important, if not crucial, role in the urban climate and global energy transition. On the one hand, the sub-surface is associated with a variety of challenges such as subsidence, pollution, damage to infrastructure and shortages of

  18. Extracting subsurface fingerprints using optical coherence tomography

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Akhoury, SS

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Subsurface Fingerprints using Optical Coherence Tomography Sharat Saurabh Akhoury, Luke Nicholas Darlow Modelling and Digital Science, Council for Scientific and Industrial Research, Pretoria, South Africa Abstract Physiologists have found... approach to extract the subsurface fingerprint representation using a high-resolution imaging technology known as Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT). ...

  19. Potential for hydrogen-oxidizing chemolithoautotrophic and diazotrophic populations to initiate biofilm formation in oligotrophic, deep terrestrial subsurface waters.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Xiaofen; Pedersen, Karsten; Edlund, Johanna; Eriksson, Lena; Åström, Mats; Andersson, Anders F; Bertilsson, Stefan; Dopson, Mark

    2017-03-23

    Deep terrestrial biosphere waters are separated from the light-driven surface by the time required to percolate to the subsurface. Despite biofilms being the dominant form of microbial life in many natural environments, they have received little attention in the oligotrophic and anaerobic waters found in deep bedrock fractures. This study is the first to use community DNA sequencing to describe biofilm formation under in situ conditions in the deep terrestrial biosphere. In this study, flow cells were attached to boreholes containing either "modern marine" or "old saline" waters of different origin and degree of isolation from the light-driven surface of the earth. Using 16S rRNA gene sequencing, we showed that planktonic and attached populations were dissimilar while gene frequencies in the metagenomes suggested that hydrogen-fed, carbon dioxide- and nitrogen-fixing populations were responsible for biofilm formation across the two aquifers. Metagenome analyses further suggested that only a subset of the populations were able to attach and produce an extracellular polysaccharide matrix. Initial biofilm formation is thus likely to be mediated by a few bacterial populations which were similar to Epsilonproteobacteria, Deltaproteobacteria, Betaproteobacteria, Verrucomicrobia, and unclassified bacteria. Populations potentially capable of attaching to a surface and to produce extracellular polysaccharide matrix for attachment were identified in the terrestrial deep biosphere. Our results suggest that the biofilm populations were taxonomically distinct from the planktonic community and were enriched in populations with a chemolithoautotrophic and diazotrophic metabolism coupling hydrogen oxidation to energy conservation under oligotrophic conditions.

  20. Sensitivity analysis of biospheric behaviour of radionuclides released from nuclear waste repositories

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Korhonen, R.; Savolainen, I.; Suolanen, V.

    1985-01-01

    Sensitivity studies of biospheric behaviour of radionuclides released from a planned spent nuclear fuel repository are performed. Sensitivity of radionuclide concentrations in biosphere and that of radiation doses to solubility of nuclides, to sedimentation rate and to intercompartmental water exchange are studied. Solubility has pronounced effect on the sedimentation on the local scale, and in general, sediment sinks were found to be of major importance in the biospheric behaviour of radionuclides. (author)

  1. Metagenome sequencing and 98 microbial genomes from Juan de Fuca Ridge flank subsurface fluids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jungbluth, Sean P.; Amend, Jan P.; Rappé, Michael S.

    2017-03-01

    The global deep subsurface biosphere is one of the largest reservoirs for microbial life on our planet. This study takes advantage of new sampling technologies and couples them with improvements to DNA sequencing and associated informatics tools to reconstruct the genomes of uncultivated Bacteria and Archaea from fluids collected deep within the Juan de Fuca Ridge subseafloor. Here, we generated two metagenomes from borehole observatories located 311 meters apart and, using binning tools, retrieved 98 genomes from metagenomes (GFMs). Of the GFMs, 31 were estimated to be >90% complete, while an additional 17 were >70% complete. Phylogenomic analysis revealed 53 bacterial and 45 archaeal GFMs, of which nearly all were distantly related to known cultivated isolates. In the GFMs, abundant Bacteria included Chloroflexi, Nitrospirae, Acetothermia (OP1), EM3, Aminicenantes (OP8), Gammaproteobacteria, and Deltaproteobacteria, while abundant Archaea included Archaeoglobi, Bathyarchaeota (MCG), and Marine Benthic Group E (MBG-E). These data are the first GFMs reconstructed from the deep basaltic subseafloor biosphere, and provide a dataset available for further interrogation.

  2. Poroelastic Parameters of Peru Margin Sediments: Implications for Flow and Transport at Multiple Scales in the Marine Biosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gettemy, G. L.; Cikoski, C.; Tobin, H. J.

    2004-12-01

    As part of a broader investigation of the deep marine subsurface environment, the first biosphere-focused drilling expedition, Leg 201, of the Ocean Drilling Program (ODP) occupied five unique sites in the Peru Margin (in a 1200 km2 region centered at 10 S, 80E). These sites represent the entire range of shallow biogeological conditions associated with this convergent margin:deep-water, mixed clay-pelagic sediments ocean-ward of the trench; slope-apron and prism toe sediments at the deformation front; and several distinct lithostratigraphic sequences on the continental shelf. Microbial enumeration and pore-water geochemistry results show that each particular site is both consistent and unique--consistent in terms of general biotic quantity and activity as predicted by energy flux and redox potential given the depositional environment and sedimentary record, but unique at key biogeological boundaries such as lithologic and/or physical property interfaces. This research addresses questions related to our understanding of how and why these boundaries form by looking at poroelastic and hydrologic parameters measured at multiple scales, from sub-millimeter to several centimeters. The issue of measurement scale, especially in regard to permeability and diffusivity characterization, is vital to interpreting observations of biologically-mediated diagenetic fronts (e.g., dolomitic lenses, depth- or time-varying barite fronts). These parameters are derived from (i) hydrologic and wave propagation experiments, (ii) SEM images, and (iii) shipboard split-core measurements, and structured in a modified Biot poroelasticity framework. This approach also allows quantification of the local heterogeneity of these parameters at the scale applicable to (and controlled by) microbial life; these results can then be used to formulate predictive models of the impact of biogeochemical processes. Ultimately, these models could then be used in interpretation of new remote-sensed data (e

  3. Phosphatase activity in Antarctica soil samples as a biosignature of extant life

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sato, Shuji; Itoh, Yuki; Takano, Yoshinori; Fukui, Manabu; Kaneko, Takeo; Kobayashi, Kensei

    Microbial activities have been detected in such extreme terrestrial environments as deep lithosphere, a submarine hydrothermal systems, stratosphere, and Antarctica. Microorganisms have adapted to such harsh environments by evolving their biomolecules. Some of these biomolecules such as enzymes might have different characteristics from those of organisms in ordinary environments. Many biosignatures (or biomarkers) have been proposed to detect microbial activities in such extreme environments. A number of techniques are proposed to evaluate biological activities in extreme environments including cultivation methods, assay of metabolism, and analysis of bioorganic compounds like amino acids and DNA. Enzyme activities are useful signature of extant life in extreme environments. Among many enzymes, phosphatase could be a good indicator of biological activities, since phosphate esters are essential for all the living terrestrial organisms. In addition, alkaline phosphatase is known as a typical zinc-containing metalloenzyme and quite stable in environments. We analyzed phosphatase activities in Antarctica soil samples to see whether they can be used as biosignatures for extant life. In addition, we characterized phosphatases extracted from the Antarctica soil samples, and compared with those obtained from other types of environments. Antarctica surface environments are quite severe environments for life since it is extremely cold and dry and exposed to strong UV and cosmic rays. We tried to evaluate biological activities in Antarctica by measuring phosphatase activities. Surface soil samples are obtained at the Sites 1-8 near Showa Base in Antarctica during the 47th Japan Antarctic exploration mission in 2005-6. Activities of acid phosphatase (ACP) and alkaline phosphatase (ALP) are measured spectrophotometrically after mixing the powdered sample and p-nitrophenyl phosphate solution (pH 6.5 for ACP, pH 8.0 for ALP). ALP was characterized after extraction from soils with

  4. Biosphere modelling for the assessment of radioactive waste repositories; the development of a common basis by the BIOMOVS II reference biospheres working group

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dorp, F. van; Egan, M.; Kessler, J.H.; Nilsson, S.; Pinedo, P.; Smith, G.; Torres, C.

    1998-01-01

    Performance criteria for radioactive waste repositories are often expressed in terms of dose or risk. The characteristics of biosphere modelling for performance assessment are that: (a) potential release occurs in the distant future, (b) reliable predictions of human behaviour at the time of release are impracticable, and (c) the biosphere is not considered to be a barrier as the geosphere and the engineered barriers. For these and other reasons, differences have arisen in the approaches to biosphere modelling for repository dose and risk assessment. The BIOMOVS II Reference Biospheres Working Group has developed (a) a recommended methodology for biosphere model development, (b) a structured list of features, events and processes (FEPs) which the model should describe, and (c) an illustrative example of the recommended methodology. The Working Group has successfully tested the Interaction Matrix (or Rock Engineering Systems, RES) approach for developing conceptual models. The BIOMOVS II Working Groups on Reference Biospheres and Complementary Studies have laid the basis for considerable harmonisation in approaches to biosphere modelling of long term radionuclide releases. (Copyright (c) 1998 Elsevier Science B.V., Amsterdam. All rights reserved.)

  5. Microbial Diversity in Hydrothermal Surface to Sub-surface Environment of Suiyo Seamount

    Science.gov (United States)

    Higashi, Y.; Sunamura, M.; Kitamura, K.; Kurusu, Y.; Nakamura, K.; Maruyama, A.

    2002-12-01

    After excavation trials to a hydrothermal subsurface biosphere of the Suiyo Seamount, Izu-Bonin Arc, microbial diversity was examined using samples collected from drilled boreholes and natural vents with an catheter-type in situ microbial entrapment/incubator. This instrument consisted of a heat-tolerant cylindrical pipe with entrapment of a titanium-mesh capsule, containing sterilized inorganic porous grains, on the tip. After 3-10 day deployment in venting fluids with the maximum temperatures from 156 to 305degC, Microbial DNA was extracted from the grains and a 16S rDNA region was amplified and sequenced. Through the phylogenetic analysis of total 72 Bacteria and 30 Archaea clones, we found three novel phylogenetic groups in this hydrothermal surface to subsurface biosphere. Some new clades within the epsilon-Proteobacteria, which seemed to be microaerophilic, moderate thermophilic, and/or sulfur oxidizing, were detected. Clones related to moderate thermophilic and photosynthetic microbes were found in grain-attached samples at collapsed borehole and natural vent sites. We also detected a new clade closely related to a hyperthermophilic Archaea, Methanococcus jannashii, which has the capability of growing autotrophically on hydrogen and producing methane. However, the later two phylogroups were estimated as below a detection limit in microscopic cell counting, i.e., fluorescence in situ hybridization and direct counting. Most of microbes in venting fluids were assigned to be Bacteria, but difficult in specifying them using any known probes. The environment must be notable in microbial and genetic resources, while the ecosystem seems to be mainly supported by chemosynthetic products through the microbial sulfur oxidation, as in most deep-sea hydrothermal systems.

  6. Rapid Reactivation of Deep Subsurface Microbes in the Presence of C-1 Compounds

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pauliina Rajala

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Microorganisms in the deep biosphere are believed to conduct little metabolic activity due to low nutrient availability in these environments. However, destructive penetration to long-isolated bedrock environments during construction of underground waste repositories can lead to increased nutrient availability and potentially affect the long-term stability of the repository systems, Here, we studied how microorganisms present in fracture fluid from a depth of 500 m in Outokumpu, Finland, respond to simple carbon compounds (C-1 compounds in the presence or absence of sulphate as an electron acceptor. C-1 compounds such as methane and methanol are important intermediates in the deep subsurface carbon cycle, and electron acceptors such as sulphate are critical components of oxidation processes. Fracture fluid samples were incubated in vitro with either methane or methanol in the presence or absence of sulphate as an electron acceptor. Metabolic response was measured by staining the microbial cells with fluorescent dyes that indicate metabolic activity and transcriptional response with RT-qPCR. Our results show that deep subsurface microbes exist in dormant states but rapidly reactivate their transcription and respiration systems in the presence of C-1 substrates, particularly methane. Microbial activity was further enhanced by the addition of sulphate as an electron acceptor. Sulphate- and nitrate-reducing microbes were particularly responsive to the addition of C-1 compounds and sulphate. These taxa are common in deep biosphere environments and may be affected by conditions disturbed by bedrock intrusion, as from drilling and excavation for long-term storage of hazardous waste.

  7. Summary of the IAEA's BIOMASS reference biosphere methodology for Environment Agency staff

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Coughtrey, P.

    2001-01-01

    The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) programme on BIOsphere Modelling and ASSessment (BIOMASS) was launched in October 1996, and will complete during 2001. The BIOMASS programme aimed to develop and apply a methodology for defining biospheres for practical radiological assessment of releases from radioactive waste disposal. This report provides a summary description of the BIOMASS methodology. The BIOMASS methodology has been developed through international collaboration and represents a major milestone in biosphere modelling. It provides an approach supported by a wide range of developers, regulators, biosphere experts and safety assessment specialists. The Environment Agency participated actively in the BIOMASS programme

  8. NACP Regional: Original Observation Data and Biosphere and Inverse Model Outputs

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — This data set contains the originally-submitted observation measurement data, terrestrial biosphere model output data, and inverse model simulations that various...

  9. NACP Regional: Original Observation Data and Biosphere and Inverse Model Outputs

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — ABSTRACT: This data set contains the originally-submitted observation measurement data, terrestrial biosphere model output data, and inverse model simulations that...

  10. Terrestrial Biosphere Dynamics in the Climate System: Past and Future

    Science.gov (United States)

    Overpeck, J.; Whitlock, C.; Huntley, B.

    2002-12-01

    The paleoenvironmental record makes it clear that climate change as large as is likely to occur in the next two centuries will drive change in the terrestrial biosphere that is both large and difficult to predict, or plan for. Many species, communities and ecosystems could experience rates of climate change, and "destination climates" that are unprecedented in their time on earth. The paleorecord also makes it clear that a wide range of possible climate system behavior, such as decades-long droughts, increases in large storm and flood frequency, and rapid sea level rise, all occurred repeatedly in the past, and for poorly understood reasons. These types of events, if they were to reoccur in the future, could have especially devastating impacts on biodiversity, both because their timing and spatial extent cannot be anticipated, and because the biota's natural defenses have been compromised by land-use, reductions in genetic flexibility, pollution, excess water utilization, invasive species, and other human influences. Vegetation disturbance (e.g., by disease, pests and fire) will undoubtedly be exacerbated by climate change (stress), but could also speed the rate at which terrestrial biosphere change takes place in the future. The paleoenvironmental record makes it clear that major scientific challenges include an improved ability to model regional biospheric change, both past and future. This in turn will be a prerequisite to obtaining realistic estimates of future biogeochemical and biophysical feedbacks, and thus to obtaining better assessments of future climate change. These steps will help generate the improved understanding of climate variability that is needed to manage global biodiversity. However, the most troubling message from the paleoenvironmental record is that unchecked anthropogenic climate change could make the Earth's 6th major mass extinction unavoidable.

  11. Evolving Phytoplankton Stoichiometry Fueled Diversification of the Marine Biosphere

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Antonietta Quigg

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available The availability of nutrients and the quantity and quality of food at the base of food webs have largely been ignored in discussions of the Phanerozoic record of biodiversity. We examine the role of nutrient availability and phytoplankton stoichiometry (the relative proportions of inorganic nutrients to carbon in the diversification of the marine biosphere. Nutrient availability and phytoplankton stoichiometry played a critical role in the initial diversification of the marine biosphere during the Neoproterozoic. Initial biosphere expansion during this time resulted in the massive sequestration of nutrients into biomass which, along with the geologically slow input of nutrients from land, set the stage for severe nutrient limitation and relatively constant marine biodiversity during the rest of the Paleozoic. Given the slow nutrient inputs from land and low recycling rates, the growth of early-to-middle Paleozoic metazoans remained limited by their having to expend energy to first “burn off” (respire excess carbon in food before the associated nutrients could be utilized for growth and reproduction; the relative equilibrium in marine biodiversity during the Paleozoic therefore appears to be real. Limited nutrient availability and the consequent nutrient imbalance may have delayed the appearance of more advanced carnivores until the Permo-Carboniferous, when widespread orogeny, falling sea level, the spread of forests, greater weathering rates, enhanced ocean circulation, oxygenation, and upwelling all combined to increase nutrient availability. During the Meso-Cenozoic, rising oxygen levels, the continued nutrient input from land, and, especially, increasing rates of bioturbation, enhanced nutrient availability, increasing the nutrient content of phytoplankton that fueled the diversification of the Modern Fauna.

  12. The biosphere as a driver of global atmospheric change

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Levine, J.S.

    1991-01-01

    The effects of the biosphere on the evolution of atmospheric oxygen and ozone, and the consequences of that development for global atmospheric change, are discussed. Attention is given to the impact of oxygen and ozone on atmospheric photolysis rates, the effect of oxygen on the biogenic production of nitrous oxide and nitric oxide, and the effects of the evolution of atmospheric oxygen on fires and biomass burning. The influence of the latter on atmospheric processes, particularly the production of methane, carbon dioxide, and carbon monoxide, is considered. 41 refs

  13. Radioactive contamination of the biosphere and consequences for food supply

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wiechen, A.

    1989-01-01

    The paper deals with all aspects of radioactive contamination of the biosphere and corresponding consequences for food supply. In particular, releases of radioactivity by nuclear weapon tests in the early 60's and nuclear accidents in recent years are discussed. Contamination of food in the Federal Republic of Germany by these events and corresponding ingestion dose are demonstrated using examples. Furthermore diffusion of radionuclides and their transfer through the food chains to man are described. Suitable methods of decontamination at different production steps and their viability are discussed. (orig.) [de

  14. Biosphere database for assessments of radioactive waste disposals (edition 1)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ashton, J.; Sumerling, T.J.

    1988-06-01

    The organisation and scope of a database for use in biosphere modelling for assessments of radioactive waste disposals is described. The database consists of reference data values for use in screening calculations and supporting information which can be referred to when deriving values and range for use in site specific assessments studies. The reference data values currently adopted are appended to this report. The QA procedure for updating the reference data values and the programs and codes which make use of them is described. (author)

  15. Cosmic rays and the biosphere over 4 billion years

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Svensmark, Henrik

    2006-01-01

    Variations in the flux of cosmic rays (CR) at Earth during the last 4.6 billion years are constructed from information about the star formation rate in the Milky Way and the evolution of the solar activity. The constructed CR signal is compared with variations in the Earths biological productivit...... as recorded in the isotope delta C-13, which spans more than 3 billion years. CR and fluctuations in biological productivity show a remarkable correlation and indicate that the evolution of climate and the biosphere on the Earth is closely linked to the evolution of the Milky Way....

  16. Biosphere modeling for safety assessment to high-level radioactive waste geological disposal. Application of reference biosphere methodology to safety assesment of geological disposal

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Baba, Tomoko; Ishihara, Yoshinao; Ishiguro, Katsuhiko; Suzuki, Yuji; Naito, Morimasa

    2000-01-01

    In the safety assessment of a high-level radioactive waste disposal system, it is required to estimate future radiological impacts on human beings. Consideration of living habits and the human environment in the future involves a large degree of uncertainty. To avoid endless speculation aimed at reducing such uncertainty, an approach is applied for identifying and justifying a 'reference biosphere' for use in safety assessment in Japan. considering a wide range of Japanese geological environments, saline specific reference biospheres' were developed using an approach consistent with the BIOMOVS II reference biosphere methodology. (author)

  17. Modeling subsurface contamination at Fernald

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jones, B.W.; Flinn, J.C.; Ruwe, P.R.

    1994-01-01

    The Department of Energy's Fernald site is located about 20 miles northwest of Cincinnati. Fernald produced refined uranium metal products from ores between 1953 and 1989. The pure uranium was sent to other DOE sites in South Carolina, Tennessee, Colorado,and Washington in support of the nation's strategic defense programs. Over the years of large-scale uranium production, contamination of the site's soil and groundwater occurred.The contamination is of particular concern because the Fernald site is located over the Great Miami Aquifer, a designated sole-source drinking water aquifer. Contamination of the aquifer with uranium was found beneath the site, and migration of the contamination had occurred well beyond the site's southern boundary. As a result, Fernald was placed on the National Priorities (CERCLA/Superfund) List in 1989. Uranium production at the site ended in 1989,and Fernald's mission has been changed to one of environmental restoration. This paper presents information about computerized modeling of subsurface contamination used for the environmental restoration project at Fernald

  18. Modeling Subsurface Hydrology in Floodplains

    Science.gov (United States)

    Evans, Cristina M.; Dritschel, David G.; Singer, Michael B.

    2018-03-01

    Soil-moisture patterns in floodplains are highly dynamic, owing to the complex relationships between soil properties, climatic conditions at the surface, and the position of the water table. Given this complexity, along with climate change scenarios in many regions, there is a need for a model to investigate the implications of different conditions on water availability to riparian vegetation. We present a model, HaughFlow, which is able to predict coupled water movement in the vadose and phreatic zones of hydraulically connected floodplains. Model output was calibrated and evaluated at six sites in Australia to identify key patterns in subsurface hydrology. This study identifies the importance of the capillary fringe in vadose zone hydrology due to its water storage capacity and creation of conductive pathways. Following peaks in water table elevation, water can be stored in the capillary fringe for up to months (depending on the soil properties). This water can provide a critical resource for vegetation that is unable to access the water table. When water table peaks coincide with heavy rainfall events, the capillary fringe can support saturation of the entire soil profile. HaughFlow is used to investigate the water availability to riparian vegetation, producing daily output of water content in the soil over decadal time periods within different depth ranges. These outputs can be summarized to support scientific investigations of plant-water relations, as well as in management applications.

  19. Introduction: energy and the subsurface

    Science.gov (United States)

    Viswanathan, Hari S.

    2016-01-01

    This theme issue covers topics at the forefront of scientific research on energy and the subsurface, ranging from carbon dioxide (CO2) sequestration to the recovery of unconventional shale oil and gas resources through hydraulic fracturing. As such, the goal of this theme issue is to have an impact on the scientific community, broadly, by providing a self-contained collection of articles contributing to and reviewing the state-of-the-art of the field. This collection of articles could be used, for example, to set the next generation of research directions, while also being useful as a self-study guide for those interested in entering the field. Review articles are included on the topics of hydraulic fracturing as a multiscale problem, numerical modelling of hydraulic fracture propagation, the role of computational sciences in the upstream oil and gas industry and chemohydrodynamic patterns in porous media. Complementing the reviews is a set of original research papers covering growth models for branched hydraulic crack systems, fluid-driven crack propagation in elastic matrices, elastic and inelastic deformation of fluid-saturated rock, reaction front propagation in fracture matrices, the effects of rock mineralogy and pore structure on stress-dependent permeability of shales, topographic viscous fingering and plume dynamics in porous media convection. This article is part of the themed issue ‘Energy and the subsurface’. PMID:27597784

  20. Multilocus resolution of phylogeny and timescale in the extant adaptive radiation of Hawaiian honeycreepers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lerner, Heather R L; Meyer, Matthias; James, Helen F; Hofreiter, Michael; Fleischer, Robert C

    2011-11-08

    Evolutionary theory has gained tremendous insight from studies of adaptive radiations. High rates of speciation, morphological divergence, and hybridization, combined with low sequence variability, however, have prevented phylogenetic reconstruction for many radiations. The Hawaiian honeycreepers are an exceptional adaptive radiation, with high phenotypic diversity and speciation that occurred within the geologically constrained setting of the Hawaiian Islands. Here we analyze a new data set of 13 nuclear loci and pyrosequencing of mitochondrial genomes that resolves the Hawaiian honeycreeper phylogeny. We show that they are a sister taxon to Eurasian rosefinches (Carpodacus) and probably came to Hawaii from Asia. We use island ages to calibrate DNA substitution rates, which vary substantially among gene regions, and calculate divergence times, showing that the radiation began roughly when the oldest of the current large Hawaiian Islands (Kauai and Niihau) formed, ~5.7 million years ago (mya). We show that most of the lineages that gave rise to distinctive morphologies diverged after Oahu emerged (4.0-3.7 mya) but before the formation of Maui and adjacent islands (2.4-1.9 mya). Thus, the formation of Oahu, and subsequent cycles of colonization and speciation between Kauai and Oahu, played key roles in generating the morphological diversity of the extant honeycreepers. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  1. Phylogenetic distribution of extant richness suggests metamorphosis is a key innovation driving diversification in insects.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    James L Rainford

    Full Text Available Insects and their six-legged relatives (Hexapoda comprise more than half of all described species and dominate terrestrial and freshwater ecosystems. Understanding the macroevolutionary processes generating this richness requires a historical perspective, but the fossil record of hexapods is patchy and incomplete. Dated molecular phylogenies provide an alternative perspective on divergence times and have been combined with birth-death models to infer patterns of diversification across a range of taxonomic groups. Here we generate a dated phylogeny of hexapod families, based on previously published sequence data and literature derived constraints, in order to identify the broad pattern of macroevolutionary changes responsible for the composition of the extant hexapod fauna. The most prominent increase in diversification identified is associated with the origin of complete metamorphosis, confirming this as a key innovation in promoting insect diversity. Subsequent reductions are recovered for several groups previously identified as having a higher fossil diversity during the Mesozoic. In addition, a number of recently derived taxa are found to have radiated following the development of flowering plant (angiosperm floras during the mid-Cretaceous. These results reveal that the composition of the modern hexapod fauna is a product of a key developmental innovation, combined with multiple and varied evolutionary responses to environmental changes from the mid Cretaceous floral transition onward.

  2. 3D microstructural architecture of muscle attachments in extant and fossil vertebrates revealed by synchrotron microtomography.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sophie Sanchez

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Firm attachments binding muscles to skeleton are crucial mechanical components of the vertebrate body. These attachments (entheses are complex three-dimensional structures, containing distinctive arrangements of cells and fibre systems embedded in the bone, which can be modified during ontogeny. Until recently it has only been possible to obtain 2D surface and thin section images of entheses, leaving their 3D histology largely unstudied except by extrapolation from 2D data. Entheses are frequently preserved in fossil bones, but sectioning is inappropriate for rare or unique fossil material. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Here we present the first non-destructive 3D investigation, by propagation phase contrast synchrotron microtomography (PPC-SRµCT, of enthesis histology in extant and fossil vertebrates. We are able to identify entheses in the humerus of the salamander Desmognathus from the organization of bone-cell lacunae and extrinsic fibres. Statistical analysis of the lacunae differentiates types of attachments, and the orientation of the fibres, reflect the approximate alignment of the muscle. Similar histological structures, including ontogenetically related pattern changes, are perfectly preserved in two 380 million year old fossil vertebrates, the placoderm Compagopiscis croucheri and the sarcopterygian fish Eusthenopteron foordi. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: We are able to determine the position of entheses in fossil vertebrates, the approximate orientation of the attached muscles, and aspects of their ontogenetic histories, from PPC-SRµCT data. Sub-micron microtomography thus provides a powerful tool for studying the structure, development, evolution and palaeobiology of muscle attachments.

  3. Buccal dental microwear variability in extant African Hominoidea: taxonomy versus ecology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Galbany, Jordi; Estebaranz, Ferran; Martínez, Laura M; Pérez-Pérez, Alejandro

    2009-07-01

    Buccal microwear patterns on teeth are good indicators of the abrasiveness of foodstuffs and have been used to trace the dietary habits of fossil species, including primates and hominids. However, few studies have addressed the variability of this microwear. The abrasiveness of dietary components depends not only on the hardness of the particles ingested, but also on the presence of dust and other exogenous elements introduced during food processing. These elements are responsible for the microwear typology observed on the enamel surfaces of primate teeth. Here we analyzed the variability of buccal microwear patterns in African Great Apes (Gorilla gorilla and Pan troglodytes), using tooth molds obtained from the original specimens held in several osteological collections. Our results suggest that ecological adaptations at subspecies or population level account for differences in microwear patterns, which are attributed to habitat and ecological conditions within populations rather than differences between species. The findings from studies on the variability of buccal dental microwear in extant species will contribute to a better understanding of extinct hominids' diet and ecology.

  4. Patterns of morphological variation of extant sloth skulls and their implication for future conservation efforts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hautier, Lionel; Billet, Guillaume; Eastwood, Bethany; Lane, Jemima

    2014-06-01

    Several studies have shown an increased morphological variability of sloths from mammalian norms, affecting varied phenotypic traits from skeletal parts to soft tissues. We present here the first descriptive comparison of the whole skull morphology within the two extant sloth genera, combining geometric morphometric approaches with comparative anatomy. We used these methods to explore the patterns of the intra- and interspecific morphological variation of the skull with regard to several factors such as phylogeny, geography, allometry, or sexual dimorphism. Our study first revealed strong phylogenetic and geographical imprints on the cranial and mandibular morphological traits. This result demonstrates the importance of accurate knowledge of species and their geographical distributions; here we show from an example pertaining to Bradypus variegatus populations the implications this has on conservation management. Moreover, in order to control the amount of this detected variation, we tentatively compared sloths to a wide range of mammalian species. Our analysis found no significant increase in the average deviation of skull shape within each investigated sloth species compared to other mammals. This suggests that the intraspecific cranial variation in sloths does not depart significantly from the variation observed in other mammals. This result has positive implications for the demarcation of anatomical regions that maintain high levels of morphological variation in sloths. Copyright © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  5. Estimating thumb-index finger precision grip and manipulation potential in extant and fossil primates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feix, Thomas; Kivell, Tracy L; Pouydebat, Emmanuelle; Dollar, Aaron M

    2015-05-06

    Primates, and particularly humans, are characterized by superior manual dexterity compared with other mammals. However, drawing the biomechanical link between hand morphology/behaviour and functional capabilities in non-human primates and fossil taxa has been challenging. We present a kinematic model of thumb-index precision grip and manipulative movement based on bony hand morphology in a broad sample of extant primates and fossil hominins. The model reveals that both joint mobility and digit proportions (scaled to hand size) are critical for determining precision grip and manipulation potential, but that having either a long thumb or great joint mobility alone does not necessarily yield high precision manipulation. The results suggest even the oldest available fossil hominins may have shared comparable precision grip manipulation with modern humans. In particular, the predicted human-like precision manipulation of Australopithecus afarensis, approximately one million years before the first stone tools, supports controversial archaeological evidence of tool-use in this taxon. © 2015 The Author(s) Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved.

  6. The evolution of body size in extant groups of North American freshwater fishes: speciation, size distributions, and Cope's rule.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Knouft, Jason H; Page, Lawrence M

    2003-03-01

    Change in body size within an evolutionary lineage over time has been under investigation since the synthesis of Cope's rule, which suggested that there is a tendency for mammals to evolve larger body size. Data from the fossil record have subsequently been examined for several other taxonomic groups to determine whether they also displayed an evolutionary increase in body size. However, we are not aware of any species-level study that has investigated the evolution of body size within an extant continental group. Data acquired from the fossil record and data derived from the evolutionary relationships of extant species are not similar, with each set exhibiting both strengths and weaknesses related to inferring evolutionary patterns. Consequently, expectation that general trends exhibited in the fossil record will correspond to patterns in extant groups is not necessarily warranted. Using phylogenetic relationships of extant species, we show that five of nine families of North American freshwater fishes exhibit an evolutionary trend of decreasing body size. These trends result from the basal position of large species and the more derived position of small species within families. Such trends may be caused by the invasion of small streams and subsequent isolation and speciation. This pattern, potentially influenced by size-biased dispersal rates and the high percentage of small streams in North America, suggests a scenario that could result in the generation of the size-frequency distribution of North American freshwater fishes.

  7. The Case for Extant Life on Mars and Its Possible Detection by the Viking Labeled Release Experiment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levin, Gilbert V; Straat, Patricia Ann

    2016-10-01

    The 1976 Viking Labeled Release (LR) experiment was positive for extant microbial life on the surface of Mars. Experiments on both Viking landers, 4000 miles apart, yielded similar, repeatable, positive responses. While the authors eventually concluded that the experiment detected martian life, this was and remains a highly controversial conclusion. Many believe that the martian environment is inimical to life and the LR responses were nonbiological, attributed to an as-yet-unidentified oxidant (or oxidants) in the martian soil. Unfortunately, no further metabolic experiments have been conducted on Mars. Instead, follow-on missions have sought to define the martian environment, mostly searching for signs of water. These missions have collected considerable data regarding Mars as a habitat, both past and present. The purpose of this article is to consider recent findings about martian water, methane, and organics that impact the case for extant life on Mars. Further, the biological explanation of the LR and recent nonbiological hypotheses are evaluated. It is concluded that extant life is a strong possibility, that abiotic interpretations of the LR data are not conclusive, and that, even setting our conclusion aside, biology should still be considered as an explanation for the LR experiment. Because of possible contamination of Mars by terrestrial microbes after Viking, we note that the LR data are the only data we will ever have on biologically pristine martian samples. Key Words: Extant life on Mars-Viking Labeled Release experiment-Astrobiology-Extraterrestrial life-Mars. Astrobiology 16, 798-810.

  8. Radiation research contracts: Distribution of fission products in the biosphere

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Schoenfeld, T.

    1959-01-01

    According to its Statute the IAEA has to fulfil a dual function - to help individual countries in solving their specific problems and to undertake tasks in the common interest of all its Member States. With this latter aim in mind the Agency has placed a number of research contracts with national research institutes. One of them deals with the distribution of fission products in the biosphere. The Agency has contributed to this work by putting at the institutes' disposal scientists from its own staff apparatus and financial aid. Protection against ionizing radiation given off in nuclear transformations is one of the foremost safety problems in all atomic energy operations. While every effort is being made to prevent reactors, processing plants and all other installations from releasing radioactive materials into the biosphere - air, water and earth - under any foreseeable conditions, small amounts of it are actually released into man's living space. Undoubtedly, this will continue to be so, at least for the time being. For example, low activity liquid wastes from some chemical processing plants are decontaminated in special processes, but traces of fission products remain in the liquids finally discharged on the ground or to nearby waterways. In some installations low and medium activity liquid wastes are even released on the ground or into swamps without prior decontamination. It is also to be expected that in accidents larger amounts of fission products may occasionally be released. (author)

  9. Basic Research in Human–Computer–Biosphere Interaction

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hill Hiroki Kobayashi

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available In this study, we present a vision of how a human–computer–biosphere interaction (HCBI can facilitate a sustainable society. HCBI extends and transforms the subject of human–computer interaction from countable people, objects, pets, and plants into an auditory biosphere that is an uncountable, a complex, and a non-linguistic soundscape. As an example, utilizing HCBI to experience forest soundscapes can help us feel one with nature, without physically being present in nature. The goal of HCBI is to achieve ecological interactions between humans and nature through computer systems without causing environmental destruction. To accomplish this, information connectivity must be created despite the physical separation between humans and the environment. This combination should also ensure ecological neutrality. In this paper, we present an overview of an HCBI concept, related work, methodologies, and developed interfaces. We used pre-recorded animal calls to enable a bio-acoustical feedback from the target wildlife. In this study, we primarily focus on the design and evaluation of a bio-acoustic interaction system utilizing tracking collars, microphones, speakers, infrared cameras, infrared heat sensors, micro-climate sensors, radio-tracking devices, GPS devices, radio clocks, embedded Linux boards, high-capacity batteries, and high-speed wireless communication devices. Our experiments successfully demonstrated bio-acoustic interactions between wildlife—more specifically, an endangered species of a wild cat—and human beings via a computer system, thus validating the HCBI concept.

  10. Emission and role of biogenic volatile organic compounds in biosphere

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Saleem, A.R.

    2013-01-01

    Plants are an essential part of the biosphere. Under the influence of climate change, plants respond in multiple ways within the ecosystem. One such way is the release of assimilated carbon back to the atmosphere in form of biogenic volatile organic compounds (BVOCs), which are produced by plants and are involved in plant growth, reproduction, defense and other . These compounds are emitted from vegetation into the atmosphere under different environmental situations. Plants produce an extensive range of BVOCs, including isoprenoids, sequisterpenes, aldehydes, alcohols and terpenes in different tissues above and below the ground. The emission rates vary with various environmental conditions and the plant growth stage in its life span.BVOCs are released under biotic and abiotic stress changes, like heat, drought, land-use changes, higher atmospheric CO concentrations, increased UV radiation and insect or disease attack. Plants emit BVOCs in atmosphere in order to avoid stress, and adapt to harsh circumstances. These compounds also have a significant role in plant-plant interaction, communication and competition. BVOCs have the ability to alter atmospheric chemistry; they readily react with atmospheric pollutant gases under high temperature and form tropospheric ozone, which is a potent air pollutant for global warming and disease occurrence. BVOCs may be a cause of photochemical smog and increase the stay of other GHGs in the atmosphere. Therefore, further study is required to assess the behavior of BVOCs in the biosphere as well as the atmosphere. (author)

  11. Prospects for the study of evolution in the deep biosphere

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jennifer F Biddle

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Since the days of Darwin, scientists have used the framework of the theory of evolution to explore the interconnectedness of life on Earth and adaptation of organisms to the ever-changing environment. The advent of molecular biology has advanced and accelerated the study of evolution by allowing direct examination of the genetic material that ultimately determines the phenotypes upon which selection acts. The study of evolution has been furthered through examination of microbial evolution, with large population numbers, short generation times and easily extractable DNA. Such work has spawned the study of microbial biogeography, with the realization that concepts developed in population genetics may be applicable to microbial genomes (Manhes et al. 2011, Martiny et al. 2006. Microbial biogeography and adaptation has been examined in many different environments. Here we argue that the deep biosphere is a unique environment for the study of evolution and list specific factors that can be considered and where the studies may be performed. This publication is the result of the NSF-funded Center for Dark Energy Biosphere Investigations (C-DEBI theme team on Evolution (www.darkenergybiosphere.org.

  12. Prospects for the Study of Evolution in the Deep Biosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biddle, Jennifer F.; Sylvan, Jason B.; Brazelton, William J.; Tully, Benjamin J.; Edwards, Katrina J.; Moyer, Craig L.; Heidelberg, John F.; Nelson, William C.

    2012-01-01

    Since the days of Darwin, scientists have used the framework of the theory of evolution to explore the interconnectedness of life on Earth and adaptation of organisms to the ever-changing environment. The advent of molecular biology has advanced and accelerated the study of evolution by allowing direct examination of the genetic material that ultimately determines the phenotypes upon which selection acts. The study of evolution has been furthered through examination of microbial evolution, with large population numbers, short generation times, and easily extractable DNA. Such work has spawned the study of microbial biogeography, with the realization that concepts developed in population genetics may be applicable to microbial genomes (Martiny et al., 2006; Manhes and Velicer, 2011). Microbial biogeography and adaptation has been examined in many different environments. Here we argue that the deep biosphere is a unique environment for the study of evolution and list specific factors that can be considered and where the studies may be performed. This publication is the result of the NSF-funded Center for Dark Energy Biosphere Investigations (C-DEBI) theme team on Evolution (www.darkenergybiosphere.org). PMID:22319515

  13. Omora Ethnobotanical Park and the UNESCO Cape Horn Biosphere Reserve

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eugene C. Hargrove

    2008-12-01

    Full Text Available The biocultural conservation and research initiative of Omora Ethnobotanical Park and the UNESCO Cape Horn Biosphere Reserve was born in a remote part of South America and has rapidly expanded to attain regional, national, and international relevance. The park and the biosphere reserve, led by Ricardo Rozzi and his team, have made significant progress in demonstrating the way academic research supports local cultures, social processes, decision making, and conservation. It is a dynamic hive of investigators, artists, writers, students, volunteers, and friends, all exploring ways to better integrate academia and society. The initiative involves an informal consortium of institutions and organizations; in Chile, these include the University of Magallanes, the Omora Foundation, and the Institute of Ecology and Biodiversity, and in the United States, the University of North Texas, the Omora Sub-Antarctic Research Alliance, and the Center for Environmental Philosophy at the University of North Texas. The consortium intends to function as a hub through which other institutions and organizations can be involved in research, education, and biocultural conservation. The park constitutes one of three long-term socio-ecological research sites in Chile of the Institute of Ecology and Biodiversity.

  14. The Orthoptera species (Insecta from Danube Delta Biosphere Reserve (Romania

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    LUPU Gabriel

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available The investigations that were made in the last 10 years and the review of scientific literature who relived studies made on grasshoppers, cricket and bush cricket species from Romania and especially from Danube Delta Biosphere Reserve (D.D.B.R. territory indicate the presence of 80 taxa belonging to Orthoptera order (ClassInsecta, an important number from a total of 187 taxa at national level. In the same time D.D.B.R. is characterized by some interesting elements of orthoptera fauna – one endemic species [Isophya dobrogensis (Kis 1994] on Popina Island, one new species for this territory [Metrioptera (Zeuneriana amplipennis (Brunner von Wattenwyl, 1882] and two species (Isophya dobrogensis (Kis, 1994 and Saga pedo (Pallas, 1771 from Red List of plant and animal species from D.D.B.R. Over 40% orthoptera species from Romania characterize through their presence Danube Delta Biosphere Reserve having a diverse geographical spreading, fact that is correlated with the diversity of dobroudjean climate. This is characterized by unique elements in Romania being an interface area between different types of climate.

  15. 'Rare biosphere' bacteria as key phenanthrene degraders in coastal seawaters.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sauret, Caroline; Séverin, Tatiana; Vétion, Gilles; Guigue, Catherine; Goutx, Madeleine; Pujo-Pay, Mireille; Conan, Pascal; Fagervold, Sonja K; Ghiglione, Jean-François

    2014-11-01

    By coupling DNA-SIP and pyrosequencing approaches, we identified Cycloclasticus sp. as a keystone degrader of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH) despite being a member of the 'rare biosphere' in NW Mediterranean seawaters. We discovered novel PAH-degrading bacteria (Oceanibaculum sp., Sneathiella sp.) and we identified other groups already known to possess this function (Alteromonas sp., Paracoccus sp.). Together with Cycloclasticus sp., these groups contributed to potential in situ phenanthrene degradation at a rate >0.5 mg l(-1) day(-1), sufficient to account for a considerable part of PAH degradation. Further, we characterized the PAH-tolerant bacterial communities, which were much more diverse in the polluted site by comparison to unpolluted marine references. PAH-tolerant bacteria were also members of the rare biosphere, such as Glaciecola sp. Collectively, these data show the complex interactions between PAH-degraders and PAH-tolerant bacteria and provide new insights for the understanding of the functional ecology of marine bacteria in polluted waters. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. Prospects for the study of evolution in the deep biosphere.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biddle, Jennifer F; Sylvan, Jason B; Brazelton, William J; Tully, Benjamin J; Edwards, Katrina J; Moyer, Craig L; Heidelberg, John F; Nelson, William C

    2011-01-01

    Since the days of Darwin, scientists have used the framework of the theory of evolution to explore the interconnectedness of life on Earth and adaptation of organisms to the ever-changing environment. The advent of molecular biology has advanced and accelerated the study of evolution by allowing direct examination of the genetic material that ultimately determines the phenotypes upon which selection acts. The study of evolution has been furthered through examination of microbial evolution, with large population numbers, short generation times, and easily extractable DNA. Such work has spawned the study of microbial biogeography, with the realization that concepts developed in population genetics may be applicable to microbial genomes (Martiny et al., 2006; Manhes and Velicer, 2011). Microbial biogeography and adaptation has been examined in many different environments. Here we argue that the deep biosphere is a unique environment for the study of evolution and list specific factors that can be considered and where the studies may be performed. This publication is the result of the NSF-funded Center for Dark Energy Biosphere Investigations (C-DEBI) theme team on Evolution (www.darkenergybiosphere.org).

  17. Urdaibai Biosphere Reserve (Biscay, Spain): Conservation against development?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castillo-Eguskitza, Nekane; Rescia, Alejandro J; Onaindia, Miren

    2017-08-15

    The protected area approach has extended from conserving biodiversity to improving human well-being. However, the relationship between conservation and socioeconomic and cultural development continues to be controversial. This paper combines land use variables with socioeconomic and cultural variables through multivariate ordination analysis and evaluates their evolution in two areas inside and outside a Biosphere Reserve since the approval of the Governance Plan for Use and Management in the Reserve. The results indicate a similar tendency in the two areas, from the abandonment of traditional rural activities and decline in pine plantations to naturalness, urban sprawl and the growth of the tertiary economic sector, welfare indicators and sustainability index. However, it can be broadly observed that the region included inside the protected area presents better conservation features (native forest) and rural systems (forestry and primary economic sector) than the region outside the protected area while maintaining similar socioeconomic and cultural conditions. We suggest that the designation of the Biosphere Reserve does not influence the local population negatively but does safeguard its conservation, which could have enhanced socioeconomic and cultural development. Thus, even though certain changes must be made to replace the conifer plantations and encourage agricultural activities, the designation of the protected area fulfills its sustainability goal and enhances the local population's quality of life. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  18. A summary of biospheric research 1975-1997

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Edlund, O.; Bergstroem, U.; Hallberg, B.; Karlsson, Sara [Studsvik Eco and Safety AB, Nykoeping (Sweden)

    1999-12-01

    The aim of this study is to present a summary of the work performed within the frame of SKB's biosphere programme during 1975 - 1997. The studies focused on field studies and theoretical model development. Important problems identified during this time period are pointed out. Summaries of the biospheric parts of the safety analyses performed since 1977 are given. Models are described as well as basic assumptions. Already the first analysis had an overall approach including dispersion from local to global zones with multiple exposure pathways. Compartment models have been used whereby the rate constants in the first assessments were mostly based on observed redistribution of radionuclides in nature. During the years emphasis has been laid on the description of processes mathematically and additional processes have been included in the models. In general, standard biospheres with constant environmental conditions were applied with focus on releases of radionuclides to wells, lakes and coastal areas. Drinking water has shown to be an important exposure pathway but not always the dominant one. Some screening calculations performed showed that peat bogs may be important recipients when doses to humans are concerned. The field studies initially focused on the naturally existing isotopes of U and Ra. A lot of studies were performed to gain data concerning the levels of these radionuclides in soils and waters. The studies also obtained information about back-ground values and the distribution between various biospheric components which was used to support model assumptions. A special sampling programme with the purpose to outline influence of drying up of lakes on the dose to individuals of critical group was also performed. The dose calculations showed that the doses could increase two orders of magnitude for immobile elements when the lake had dried up. Investigations of the natural abundance of radionuclides in soil and flora were performed later. After the

  19. A summary of biospheric research 1975-1997

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Edlund, O.; Bergstroem, U.; Hallberg, B.; Karlsson, Sara

    1999-12-01

    The aim of this study is to present a summary of the work performed within the frame of SKB's biosphere programme during 1975 - 1997. The studies focused on field studies and theoretical model development. Important problems identified during this time period are pointed out. Summaries of the biospheric parts of the safety analyses performed since 1977 are given. Models are described as well as basic assumptions. Already the first analysis had an overall approach including dispersion from local to global zones with multiple exposure pathways. Compartment models have been used whereby the rate constants in the first assessments were mostly based on observed redistribution of radionuclides in nature. During the years emphasis has been laid on the description of processes mathematically and additional processes have been included in the models. In general, standard biospheres with constant environmental conditions were applied with focus on releases of radionuclides to wells, lakes and coastal areas. Drinking water has shown to be an important exposure pathway but not always the dominant one. Some screening calculations performed showed that peat bogs may be important recipients when doses to humans are concerned. The field studies initially focused on the naturally existing isotopes of U and Ra. A lot of studies were performed to gain data concerning the levels of these radionuclides in soils and waters. The studies also obtained information about back-ground values and the distribution between various biospheric components which was used to support model assumptions. A special sampling programme with the purpose to outline influence of drying up of lakes on the dose to individuals of critical group was also performed. The dose calculations showed that the doses could increase two orders of magnitude for immobile elements when the lake had dried up. Investigations of the natural abundance of radionuclides in soil and flora were performed later. After the Chernobyl

  20. SUBSURFACE REPOSITORY INTEGRATED CONTROL SYSTEM DESIGN

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Randle, D.C.

    2000-01-01

    The primary purpose of this document is to develop a preliminary high-level functional and physical control system architecture for the potential repository at Yucca Mountain. This document outlines an overall control system concept that encompasses and integrates the many diverse process and communication systems being developed for the subsurface repository design. This document presents integrated design concepts for monitoring and controlling the diverse set of subsurface operations. The Subsurface Repository Integrated Control System design will be composed of a series of diverse process systems and communication networks. The subsurface repository design contains many systems related to instrumentation and control (I andC) for both repository development and waste emplacement operations. These systems include waste emplacement, waste retrieval, ventilation, radiological and air monitoring, rail transportation, construction development, utility systems (electrical, lighting, water, compressed air, etc.), fire protection, backfill emplacement, and performance confirmation. Each of these systems involves some level of I andC and will typically be integrated over a data communications network throughout the subsurface facility. The subsurface I andC systems will also interface with multiple surface-based systems such as site operations, rail transportation, security and safeguards, and electrical/piped utilities. In addition to the I andC systems, the subsurface repository design also contains systems related to voice and video communications. The components for each of these systems will be distributed and linked over voice and video communication networks throughout the subsurface facility. The scope and primary objectives of this design analysis are to: (1) Identify preliminary system-level functions and interfaces (Section 6.2). (2) Examine the overall system complexity and determine how and on what levels the engineered process systems will be monitored

  1. DOE UST interim subsurface barrier technologies workshop

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1992-09-01

    This document contains information which was presented at a workshop regarding interim subsurface barrier technologies that could be used for underground storage tanks, particularly the tank 241-C-106 at the Hanford Reservation

  2. Design and maintenance of subsurface gravel wetlands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-02-01

    This report summarizes the University of New Hampshire Stormwater Center (UNHSC) evaluation of : a review of Subsurface Gravel Wetlands design and specifications used by the New Hampshire : Department of Transportation (NHDOT or Department). : Subsur...

  3. Component-based framework for subsurface simulations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Palmer, B J; Fang, Yilin; Hammond, Glenn; Gurumoorthi, Vidhya

    2007-01-01

    Simulations in the subsurface environment represent a broad range of phenomena covering an equally broad range of scales. Developing modelling capabilities that can integrate models representing different phenomena acting at different scales present formidable challenges both from the algorithmic and computer science perspective. This paper will describe the development of an integrated framework that will be used to combine different models into a single simulation. Initial work has focused on creating two frameworks, one for performing smooth particle hydrodynamics (SPH) simulations of fluid systems, the other for performing grid-based continuum simulations of reactive subsurface flow. The SPH framework is based on a parallel code developed for doing pore scale simulations, the continuum grid-based framework is based on the STOMP (Subsurface Transport Over Multiple Phases) code developed at PNNL Future work will focus on combining the frameworks together to perform multiscale, multiphysics simulations of reactive subsurface flow

  4. Subsurface Prospecting by Planetary Drones, Phase I

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The proposed program innovates subsurface prospecting by planetary drones to seek a solution to the difficulty of robotic prospecting, sample acquisition, and sample...

  5. Reference biospheres for the long term safety assessment of radioactive waste disposal facilities

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Crossland, I.G.; Torres, C.

    2002-01-01

    Regulatory guidance on the safety assessment of radioactive waste disposals usually requires the consequences of any radionuclide releases to be considered in terms of their potential impact on human health. This requires consideration of the prevailing biosphere and the habits of the potentially exposed humans within it. However, it could take many thousands of years for migrating radionuclides to reach the surface environment. In these circumstances, an assessment model that was based on the present-day biosphere could be inappropriate while future biospheres would be unpredictable. These and other considerations suggest that a standardised, or reference biosphere, approach may be useful. Theme 1 of the IAEA BIOMASS project was established to develop the concept of reference biospheres into a practical system that can be applied to the assessment of the long term safety of geological disposal facilities for radioactive waste. The technical phase of the project lasted for four years until November 2000 and brought together disparate interests from many countries including waste disposal agencies, regulators and technical experts. Building on the experience from earlier BIOMOVS projects, a methodology was constructed for the logical and defensible construction of mathematical biosphere models that can be used in the total system performance assessment of radioactive waste disposal. The methodology was then further developed through the creation of a series of BIOMASS Example Reference Biospheres ('Examples'). These are stylised biosphere models that, in addition to illustrating the methodology, are intended to be useful assessment tools in their own right. (author)

  6. Radioactive iodine waste. 8. Biosphere assessment of I-129 released to deep marine seabed

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Miki, Takahito; Yoshida, Hideji; Ikeda, Takao

    1999-01-01

    Biosphere model for I-129 repository constructed under coastal seabed was developed in this study. The result showed that dose conversion factor for the repository was much less than that of biosphere model which was developed for the river discharge case. This was due to the much amount of dilution by seawater and limited exposure pathway.(author)

  7. Improvement of biosphere assessment methodology for performance assessment of geological disposal facility. 2

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Miki, Takahito; Yoshida, Hideji; Ikeda, Takao

    2002-02-01

    This report contains results on study of Geosphere-Biosphere Interface (GBI), development of biosphere assessment model for gaseous and volatile radionuclides, review of biosphere assessment and research on safety indicators. Regarding study of Geosphere-Biosphere Interface (GBI), FEP database for the Geosphere-Biosphere Transitions Zone (GBTZ) were compiled. Furthermore, release scenarios were identified from the FEP database, and review of conservativeness and robustness of the conceptual and mathematical models developed previously by JNC were undertaken. Regarding development of biosphere assessment model for gaseous and volatile radionuclides, the conceptual and mathematical models were developed, and it was confirmed that the impact of the exposure pathway regarding gas release to flux-to-dose conversion factor is small. Regarding review of biosphere assessment data, the parameters which were used on JNC second progress report were reviewed and classified using the biosphere data protocol categories. Furthermore, the data for key parameter (important but poorly characterized parameters) were revised. Regarding research on safety indicator, some kinds of safety indicators, especially for the non-radioactive contaminant and for the non-human biota, are reviewed. (author)

  8. Improvement of biosphere assessment methodology for performance assessment of geological disposal facility. 2. Outline

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Miki, Takahito; Yoshida, Hideji; Ikeda, Takao

    2002-02-01

    This report contains results on study of Geosphere-Biosphere Interface (GBI), development of biosphere assessment model for gaseous and volatile radionuclides, review of biosphere assessment and research on safety indicators. Regarding study of Geosphere-Biosphere Interface (GBI), FEP database for the Geosphere-Biosphere Transitions Zone (GBTZ) were compiled. Furthermore, release scenarios were identified from the FEP database, and review of conservativeness and robustness of the conceptual and mathematical models developed previously by JNC were undertaken. Regarding development of biosphere assessment model for gaseous and volatile radionuclides, the conceptual and mathematical models were developed, and it was confirmed that the impact of the exposure pathway regarding gas release to flux-to-dose conversion factor is small. Regarding review of biosphere assessment data, the parameters which were used on JNC second progress report were reviewed and classified using the biosphere data protocol categories. Furthermore, the data for key parameter (important but poorly characterized parameters) were revised. Regarding research on safety indicator, some kinds of safety indicators, especially for the non-radioactive contaminant and for the non-human biota, are reviewed. (author)

  9. Evaluation of Features, Events, and Processes (FEP) for the Biosphere Model

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    M. Wasiolek; P. Rogers

    2004-10-27

    The purpose of this analysis report is to evaluate and document the inclusion or exclusion of biosphere features, events, and processes (FEPs) with respect to modeling used to support the total system performance assessment (TSPA) for the license application (LA). A screening decision, either ''Included'' or ''Excluded'', is given for each FEP along with the corresponding technical basis for the excluded FEPs and the descriptions of how the included FEPs were incorporated in the biosphere model. This information is required by the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) regulations at 10 CFR 63.114 (d, e, and f) [DIRS 156605]. The FEPs addressed in this report concern characteristics of the reference biosphere, the receptor, and the environmental transport and receptor exposure pathways for the groundwater and volcanic ash exposure scenarios considered in biosphere modeling. This revision provides the summary of the implementation of included FEPs in TSPA-LA, (i.e., how the FEP is included); for excluded FEPs, this analysis provides the technical basis for exclusion from TSPA-LA (i.e., why the FEP is excluded). This report is one of the 10 documents constituting the biosphere model documentation suite. A graphical representation of the documentation hierarchy for the biosphere model is presented in Figure 1-1. This figure shows the interrelationships among the products (i.e., analysis and model reports) developed for biosphere modeling. The ''Biosphere Model Report'' describes in detail the biosphere conceptual model and mathematical model. The input parameter reports shown to the right of the ''Biosphere Model Report'' contain detailed descriptions of the model input parameters and their development. Outputs from these six reports are used in the ''Nominal Performance Biosphere Dose Conversion Factor Analysis and Disruptive Event Biosphere Dose Conversion Factor Analysis

  10. The comparative osteology of the petrotympanic complex (ear region of extant baleen whales (Cetacea: Mysticeti.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eric G Ekdale

    Full Text Available Anatomical comparisons of the ear region of baleen whales (Mysticeti are provided through detailed osteological descriptions and high-resolution photographs of the petrotympanic complex (tympanic bulla and petrosal bone of all extant species of mysticete cetaceans. Salient morphological features are illustrated and identified, including overall shape of the bulla, size of the conical process of the bulla, morphology of the promontorium, and the size and shape of the anterior process of the petrosal. We place our comparative osteological observations into a phylogenetic context in order to initiate an exploration into petrotympanic evolution within Mysticeti.The morphology of the petrotympanic complex is diagnostic for individual species of baleen whale (e.g., sigmoid and conical processes positioned at midline of bulla in Balaenoptera musculus; confluence of fenestra cochleae and perilymphatic foramen in Eschrichtius robustus, and several mysticete clades are united by derived characteristics. Balaenids and neobalaenids share derived features of the bulla, such as a rhomboid shape and a reduced anterior lobe (swelling in ventral aspect, and eschrichtiids share derived morphologies of the petrosal with balaenopterids, including loss of a medial promontory groove and dorsomedial elongation of the promontorium. Monophyly of Balaenoidea (Balaenidae and Neobalaenidae and Balaenopteroidea (Balaenopteridae and Eschrichtiidae was recovered in phylogenetic analyses utilizing data exclusively from the petrotympanic complex.This study fills a major gap in our knowledge of the complex structures of the mysticete petrotympanic complex, which is an important anatomical region for the interpretation of the evolutionary history of mammals. In addition, we introduce a novel body of phylogenetically informative characters from the ear region of mysticetes. Our detailed anatomical descriptions, illustrations, and comparisons provide valuable data for current and

  11. The effect of body size evolution and ecology on encephalization in cave bears and extant relatives.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Veitschegger, Kristof

    2017-06-05

    The evolution of larger brain volumes relative to body size in Mammalia is the subject of an extensive amount of research. Early on palaeontologists were interested in the brain of cave bears, Ursus spelaeus, and described its morphology and size. However, until now, it was not possible to compare the absolute or relative brain size in a phylogenetic context due to the lack of an established phylogeny, comparative material, and phylogenetic comparative methods. In recent years, many tools for comparing traits within phylogenies were developed and the phylogenetic position of cave bears was resolved based on nuclear as well as mtDNA. Cave bears exhibit significantly lower encephalization compared to their contemporary relatives and intraspecific brain mass variation remained rather small. Encephalization was correlated with the combined dormancy-diet score. Body size evolution was a main driver in the degree of encephalization in cave bears as it increased in a much higher pace than brain size. In Ursus spelaeus, brain and body size increase over time albeit differently paced. This rate pattern is different in the highest encephalized bear species within the dataset, Ursus malayanus. The brain size in this species increased while body size heavily decreased compared to its ancestral stage. Early on in the evolution of cave bears encephalization decreased making it one of the least encephalized bear species compared to extant and extinct members of Ursidae. The results give reason to suspect that as herbivorous animals, cave bears might have exhibited a physiological buffer strategy to survive the strong seasonality of their environment. Thus, brain size was probably affected by the negative trade-off with adipose tissue as well as diet. The decrease of relative brain size in the herbivorous Ursus spelaeus is the result of a considerable increase in body size possibly in combination with environmental conditions forcing them to rest during winters.

  12. Mitochondrial DNA regionalism and historical demography in the extant populations of Chirocephalus kerkyrensis (Branchiopoda: Anostraca).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ketmaier, Valerio; Marrone, Federico; Alfonso, Giuseppe; Paulus, Kirsten; Wiemann, Annika; Tiedemann, Ralph; Mura, Graziella

    2012-01-01

    Mediterranean temporary water bodies are important reservoirs of biodiversity and host a unique assemblage of diapausing aquatic invertebrates. These environments are currently vanishing because of increasing human pressure. Chirocephalus kerkyrensis is a fairy shrimp typical of temporary water bodies in Mediterranean plain forests and has undergone a substantial decline in number of populations in recent years due to habitat loss. We assessed patterns of genetic connectivity and phylogeographic history in the seven extant populations of the species from Albania, Corfu Is. (Greece), Southern and Central Italy. We analyzed sequence variation at two mitochondrial DNA genes (Cytochrome Oxidase I and 16s rRNA) in all the known populations of C. kerkyrensis. We used multiple phylogenetic, phylogeographic and coalescence-based approaches to assess connectivity and historical demography across the whole distribution range of the species. C. kerkyrensis is genetically subdivided into three main mitochondrial lineages; two of them are geographically localized (Corfu Is. and Central Italy) and one encompasses a wide geographic area (Albania and Southern Italy). Most of the detected genetic variation (≈81%) is apportioned among the aforementioned lineages. Multiple analyses of mismatch distributions consistently supported both past demographic and spatial expansions with the former predating the latter; demographic expansions were consistently placed during interglacial warm phases of the Pleistocene while spatial expansions were restricted to cold periods. Coalescence methods revealed a scenario of past isolation with low levels of gene flow in line with what is already known for other co-distributed fairy shrimps and suggest drift as the prevailing force in promoting local divergence. We recommend that these evolutionary trajectories should be taken in proper consideration in any effort aimed at protecting Mediterranean temporary water bodies.

  13. Qualitative skeletal correlates of wing shape in extant birds (Aves: Neoaves).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hieronymus, Tobin L

    2015-02-27

    Among living fliers (birds, bats, and insects), birds display relatively high aspect ratios, a dimensionless shape variable that distinguishes long and narrow vs. short and broad wings. Increasing aspect ratio results in a functional tradeoff between low induced drag (efficient cruise) and increased wing inertia (difficult takeoff). Given the wide scope of its functional effects, the pattern of aspect ratio evolution is an important factor that contributes to the substantial ecological and phylogenetic diversity of living birds. However, because the feathers that define the wingtip (and hence wingspan and aspect ratio) often do not fossilize, resolution in the pattern of avian wing shape evolution is obscured by missing information. Here I use a comparative approach to investigate the relationship between skeletal proxies of flight feather attachment and wing shape. An accessory lobe of the internal index process of digit II-1, a bony correlate of distal primary attachment, shows weak but statistically significant relationships to aspect ratio and mass independent of other skeletal morphology. The dorsal phalangeal fossae of digit II-1, which house distal primaries VIII and IX, also show a trend of increased prominence with higher aspect ratio. Quill knobs on the ulna are examined concurrently, but do not show consistent signal with respect to wing shape. Although quill knobs are cited as skeletal correlates of flight performance in birds, their relationship to wing shape is inconsistent among extant taxa, and may reflect diverging selection pressures acting on a conserved architecture. In contrast, correlates of distal primary feather attachment on the major digit show convergent responses to increasing aspect ratio. In light of the diversity of musculoskeletal and integumentary mophology that underlies wing shape in different avian clades, it is unlikely that a single skeletal feature will show consistent predictive power across Neoaves. Confident inference of

  14. Influence of microbial biofilms on the preservation of primary soft tissue in fossil and extant archosaurs.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joseph E Peterson

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Mineralized and permineralized bone is the most common form of fossilization in the vertebrate record. Preservation of gross soft tissues is extremely rare, but recent studies have suggested that primary soft tissues and biomolecules are more commonly preserved within preserved bones than had been presumed. Some of these claims have been challenged, with presentation of evidence suggesting that some of the structures are microbial artifacts, not primary soft tissues. The identification of biomolecules in fossil vertebrate extracts from a specimen of Brachylophosaurus canadensis has shown the interpretation of preserved organic remains as microbial biofilm to be highly unlikely. These discussions also propose a variety of potential mechanisms that would permit the preservation of soft-tissues in vertebrate fossils over geologic time. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: This study experimentally examines the role of microbial biofilms in soft-tissue preservation in vertebrate fossils by quantitatively establishing the growth and morphology of biofilms on extant archosaur bone. These results are microscopically and morphologically compared with soft-tissue extracts from vertebrate fossils from the Hell Creek Formation of southeastern Montana (Latest Maastrichtian in order to investigate the potential role of microbial biofilms on the preservation of fossil bone and bound organic matter in a variety of taphonomic settings. Based on these analyses, we highlight a mechanism whereby this bound organic matter may be preserved. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Results of the study indicate that the crystallization of microbial biofilms on decomposing organic matter within vertebrate bone in early taphonomic stages may contribute to the preservation of primary soft tissues deeper in the bone structure.

  15. Using extant literature in a grounded theory study: a personal account.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yarwood-Ross, Lee; Jack, Kirsten

    2015-03-01

    To provide a personal account of the factors in a doctoral study that led to the adoption of classic grounded theory principles relating to the use of literature. Novice researchers considering grounded theory methodology will become aware of the contentious issue of how and when extant literature should be incorporated into a study. The three main grounded theory approaches are classic, Straussian and constructivist, and the seminal texts provide conflicting beliefs surrounding the use of literature. A classic approach avoids a pre-study literature review to minimise preconceptions and emphasises the constant comparison method, while the Straussian and constructivist approaches focus more on the beneficial aspects of an initial literature review and researcher reflexivity. The debate also extends into the wider academic community, where no consensus exists. This is a methodological paper detailing the authors' engagement in the debate surrounding the role of the literature in a grounded theory study. In the authors' experience, researchers can best understand the use of literature in grounded theory through immersion in the seminal texts, engaging with wider academic literature, and examining their preconceptions of the substantive area. The authors concluded that classic grounded theory principles were appropriate in the context of their doctoral study. Novice researchers will have their own sets of circumstances when preparing their studies and should become aware of the different perspectives to make decisions that they can ultimately justify. This paper can be used by other novice researchers as an example of the decision-making process that led to delaying a pre-study literature review and identifies the resources used to write a research proposal when using a classic grounded theory approach.

  16. The extant World War 1 dysentery bacillus NCTC1: a genomic analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baker, Kate S; Mather, Alison E; McGregor, Hannah; Coupland, Paul; Langridge, Gemma C; Day, Martin; Deheer-Graham, Ana; Parkhill, Julian; Russell, Julie E; Thomson, Nicholas R

    2014-11-08

    Shigellosis (previously bacillary dysentery) was the primary diarrhoeal disease of World War 1, but outbreaks still occur in military operations, and shigellosis causes hundreds of thousands of deaths per year in developing nations. We aimed to generate a high-quality reference genome of the historical Shigella flexneri isolate NCTC1 and to examine the isolate for resistance to antimicrobials. In this genomic analysis, we sequenced the oldest extant Shigella flexneri serotype 2a isolate using single-molecule real-time (SMRT) sequencing technology. Isolated from a soldier with dysentery from the British forces fighting on the Western Front in World War 1, this bacterium, NCTC1, was the first isolate accessioned into the National Collection of Type Cultures. We created a reference sequence for NCTC1, investigated the isolate for antimicrobial resistance, and undertook comparative genetics with S flexneri reference strains isolated during the 100 years since World War 1. We discovered that NCTC1 belonged to a 2a lineage of S flexneri, with which it shares common characteristics and a large core genome. NCTC1 was resistant to penicillin and erythromycin, and contained a complement of chromosomal antimicrobial resistance genes similar to that of more recent isolates. Genomic islands gained in the S flexneri 2a lineage over time were predominately associated with additional antimicrobial resistances, virulence, and serotype conversion. This S flexneri 2a lineage is a well adapted pathogen that has continued to respond to selective pressures. We have created a valuable historical benchmark for shigellae in the form of a high-quality reference sequence for a publicly available isolate. The Wellcome Trust. Copyright © 2014 Baker et al. Open Access article distributed under the terms of CC BY. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. 'Reference Biospheres' for solid radioactive waste disposal. Report of BIOMASS Theme 1 of the BIOsphere Modelling and ASSessment (BIOMASS) Programme. Part of the IAEA Co-ordinated Research Project on Biosphere Modelling and Assessment (BIOMASS)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    2003-07-01

    The IAEA Programme on BIOsphere Modelling and ASSessment (BIOMASS) was launched in Vienna in October 1996. The programme was concerned with developing and improving capabilities to predict the transfer of radionuclides in the environment. The programme had three themes: Theme 1: Radioactive Waste Disposal. The objective was to develop the concept of a standard or reference biosphere for application to the assessment of the long-term safety of repositories for radioactive waste. Under the general heading of 'Reference Biospheres', six Task Groups were established: Task Group 1: Principles for the Definition of Critical and Other Exposure Groups. Task Group 2: Principles for the Application of Data to Assessment Models. Task Group 3: Consideration of Alternative Assessment Contexts. Task Group 4: Biosphere System Identification and Justification. Task Group 5: Biosphere System Descriptions. Task Group 6: Model Development. Theme 2: Environmental Releases. BIOMASS provided an international forum for activities aimed at increasing the confidence in methods and models for the assessment of radiation exposure related to environmental releases. Two Working Groups addressed issues concerned with the reconstruction of radiation doses received by people from past releases of radionuclides to the environment and the evaluation of the efficacy of remedial measures. Theme 3: Biosphere Processes. The aim of this Theme was to improve capabilities for modelling the transfer of radionuclides in particular parts of the biosphere identified as being of potential radiological significance and where there were gaps in modelling approaches. This topic was explored using a range of methods including reviews of the literature, model inter-comparison exercises and, where possible, model testing against independent sources of data. Three Working Groups were established to examine the modelling of: (1) long term tritium dispersion in the environment; (2) radionuclide uptake by fruits; and (3

  18. Overall strategy for management of parameters and data in the biosphere assessment portfolio

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hjerpe, T.

    2006-12-01

    Throughout the biosphere assessment, the parameters selected to represent the present and future biosphere and choices of data values are crucial issues, greatly affecting the end result. The necessity of clear strategy for managing parameters and data is obvious; how to handle the variability of parameters as such, the selection from different sources, the derivation of values of model parameters not readily available, storage of the data in a proper manner, and assuring the quality throughout the whole assessment programme. In this working report a proposed set of broad guidelines for the overall strategy for the management of parameters and data in the biosphere assessment strategy is first presented. Thereafter, a scheme is proposed for assuring the knowledge quality of data. Finally, a proposal for requirements and management of the biosphere assessment database and the current status of the on-going work building the biosphere assessment database and interfaces to other tools are presented. (orig.)

  19. An overview of biosphere modelling for the assessment of solid waste disposal

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Smith, G.M.

    1990-01-01

    The purpose of this paper is to discuss the role of biosphere modelling in relation to the overall assessment of disposal of solid radioactive waste. Model structure and data requirements are strongly influenced by a number of basic factors. Firstly, the alternative forms of safety criteria and regulatory requirements imply different end-points for biosphere models. Secondly, alternative disposal concepts can influence the significance of the biosphere as a barrier or diluting/concentrating feature affecting exposure of man. Thirdly, the range of different possibilities for release to the biosphere, including releases following intrusion, is very extensive. The requirements and state of development of biosphere models are discussed in relation to these factors along with methods being adopted to provide some expression of confidence in model results. 37 refs

  20. SiB3 Modeled Global 1-degree Hourly Biosphere-Atmosphere Carbon Flux, 1998-2006

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The Simple Biosphere Model, Version 3 (SiB3) was used to produce a global data set of hourly carbon fluxes between the atmosphere and the terrestrial biosphere for...

  1. Value orientations and environmental beliefs in five countries - Validity of an instrument to measure egoistic, altruistic and biospheric value orientations

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    de Groot, Judith I. M.; Steg, Linda

    Various scholars argue that egoistic, altruistic, and biospheric value orientations are important for understanding environmental beliefs and behavior. However, little empirical evidence has been provided for the distinction between altruistic and biospheric values. This study examines whether this

  2. An electrical resistivity-based method for investigation of subsurface structure

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alves Meira Neto, A.; Litwin, D.; Troch, P. A. A.; Ferre, T. P. A.

    2017-12-01

    Resolving the spatial distribution of soil porosity within the subsurface is of great importance for understanding flow and transport within heterogeneous media. Additionally, porosity patterns can be associated with the availability of water and carbon dioxide that will drive geochemical reactions and constrain microbiological growth. The use of controlled experimentation has the potential to circumvent problems related to the external and internal variability of natural systems, while also allowing a higher degree of observability. In this study, we suggest an ERT-based method of retrieving porosity fields based on the application of Archie's law associated with an experimental procedure that can be used in laboratory-scale studies. We used a 2 cubic meter soil lysimeter, equipped with 238 electrodes distributed along its walls for testing the method. The lysimeter serves as a scaled-down version of the highly monitored artificial hillslopes at the Landscape Evolution Observatory (LEO) located at Biosphere 2 - University of Arizona. The capability of the ERT system in deriving spatially distributed patterns of porosity with respect to its several sources of uncertainty was numerically evaluated. The results will be used to produce an optimal experimental design and for assessing the reliability of experimental results. This novel approach has the potential to further resolve subsurface heterogeneity within the LEO project, and highlight the use of ERT-derived results for hydro-bio-geochemical studies.

  3. Active microbial community structure of deep subsurface sediments within Baltic Sea Basin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reese, B. K.; Zinke, L.; Carvalho, G.; Lloyd, K. G.; Marshall, I.; Shumaker, A.; Amend, J.

    2014-12-01

    The Baltic Sea Basin (BSB) is a unique depositional setting that has experienced periods of glaciation and deglaciation as a result of climatic fluctuations over past tens of thousands of years. This has resulted in laminated sediments formed during periods with strong permanent salinity stratification. The high sedimentation rates make this an ideal setting to understand the microbial structure of a deep biosphere community in a relatively high carbon, and thus high-energy environment, compared to other deep subsurface sites. Samples were collected through scientific drilling during the International Ocean Discovery Program (IODP) Expedition 347 on board the Greatship Manisha, September-November 2013. We examined the active microbial community structure using the 16S rRNA gene transcript and active functional genes through metatranscriptome sequencing. Major biogeochemical shifts have been observed in response to the depositional history between the limnic, brackish, and marine phases. The active microbial community structure in the BSB is diverse and reflective of the unique changes in the geochemical profile. These data further refine our understanding of the existence life in the deep subsurface and the survival mechanisms required for this extreme environment.

  4. Impact of Biomass Burning Aerosols on the Biosphere over Amazonia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malavelle, F.; Haywood, J.; Mercado, L.; Folberth, G.; Bellouin, N.

    2014-12-01

    Biomass burning (BB) smoke from deforestation and the burning of agricultural waste emit a complex cocktail of aerosol particles and gases. BB emissions show a regional hotspot over South America on the edges of Amazonia. These major perturbations and impacts on surface temperature, surface fluxes, chemistry, radiation, rainfall, may have significant consequent impacts on the Amazon rainforest, the largest and most productive carbon store on the planet. There is therefore potential for very significant interaction and interplay between aerosols, clouds, radiation and the biosphere in the region. Terrestrial carbon production (i.e. photosynthesis) is intimately tied to the supply of photosynthetically active radiation (PAR - i.e. wavelengths between 300-690 nm). PAR in sufficient intensity and duration is critical for plant growth. However, if a decrease in total radiation is accompanied by an increase in the component of diffuse radiation, plant productivity may increase due to higher light use efficiency per unit of PAR and less photosynthetic saturation. This effect, sometimes referred as diffuse light fertilization effect, could have increased the global land carbon sink by approximately one quarter during the global dimming period and is expected to be a least as important locally. By directly interacting with radiation, BB aerosols significantly reduce the total amount of PAR available to plant canopies. In addition, BB aerosols also play a centre role in cloud formation because they provide the necessary cloud condensation nuclei, hence indirectly altering the water cycle and the components and quantity of PAR. In this presentation, we use the recent observations from the South American Biomass Burning Analysis (SAMBBA) to explore the impact of radiation changes on the carbon cycle in the Amazon region caused by BB emissions. A parameterisation of the impact of diffuse and direct radiation upon photosynthesis rates and net primary productivity in the

  5. Deep Biosphere Secrets of the Mediterranean Salt Giant

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aloisi, Giovanni; Lugli, Stefano; McGenity, Terry; Kuroda, Junichiro; Takai, Ken; Treude, Tina; Camerlenghi, Angelo

    2015-04-01

    One component of the IODP multi-platform drilling proposal called DREAM (Deep-Sea Record of Mediterranean Messisnian Events), plans to investigate the deep biosphere associated to the Messinian Salinity Crisis (MSC) Salt Giant. We propose that the MSC Salt Giant, because of the variety of chemical environments it produces, has the potential to harbour an unprecedented diversity of microbial life with exceptional metabolic activity. Gypsum and anhydrite deposits provide a virtually unlimited source of sulphate at depths where oxidants are a rarity in other sedimentary environments. When reduced organic carbon comes into contact with these minerals there is the potential for a dynamic deep biosphere community of sulphate reducers to develop, with implications for sedimentary biogeochemical cycles and the souring of cruide oil. But the thickness of the Messinian evaporites and the range of chemical environments it harbours poses fundamental questions: will the interaction of several extreme conditions of temperature, salinity, pressure and chemical composition limit the ability of microbes to take advantage of such favourable thermodynamic conditions? And has such a diverse set of physical and chemical environments fostered microbal diversity, rather than phylogenetic specialization, as recent research into deep Mediterranean brine systems seems to indicate ? Over three kilometres in thickness, approaching the known temperature limits of life and with fluids precipitating carbonate, sulphate, halite and potash salts, microbes living within and around the MSC Salt Giant will be subject to the most exotic combinations of extremes, and have likely evolved yet unknown adaptations. Gypsum and Halite crystals contain fluid inclusions that are a micro-habitat in which microbes survive for tens of thousands, to possibly millions, of years, posing the fundamental question of cells devoting nearly all of their energy flow to somatic maintenance needs, rather than growth and

  6. Consumption of energy and release of entropy into the biosphere

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Deutscher, G.

    2014-01-01

    The short-term threat on humanity is not the shortage of energy but rather the contamination of the environment. The concept of entropy is useful to assess the impact of humane activities on the environment. During most of earth history the increase of entropy was more than compensated by the energy brought by the sun. Today the intensive use of fossil fuels has reversed the trend: the biosphere entropy increases as CO 2 piles up in the atmosphere. The release of entropy is linked to the amount of energy we consume and to the efficiency of the process we use to produce it. Nuclear power plants release entropy as low-temperature heat but this amount of entropy is far less than the entropy released by fossil-fuel power plants under the form of CO 2 . (A.C.)

  7. Exploring the dark energy biosphere, 15 seconds at a time

    Science.gov (United States)

    Petrone, C.; Tossey, L.; Biddle, J.

    2016-12-01

    Science communication often suffers from numerous pitfalls including jargon, complexity, ageneral lack of (science) education of the audience, and short attention spans. With the Center for Dark EnergyBiosphere Investigations (C-DEBI), Delaware Sea Grant is expanding its collection of 15 Second Science videos, whichdeliver complex science topics, with visually stimulating footage and succinct audio. Featuring a diverse cast of scientistsand educators in front of the camera, we are expanded our reach into the public and classrooms. We're alsoexperimenting with smartphone-based virtual reality, for a more immersive experience into the deep! We will show youthe process for planning, producing, and posting our #15secondscience videos and VR segments, and how we areevaluating effectiveness.

  8. Europa the ocean moon : search for an alien biosphere

    CERN Document Server

    Greenberg, Richard

    2004-01-01

    Europa - The Ocean Moon tells the story of the Galileo spacecraft probe to Jupiter's moon, Europa. It provides a detailed description of the physical processes, including the dominating tidal forces that operate on Europa, and includes a comprehensive tour of Europa using images taken by Galileo's camera. The book reviews and evaluates the interpretative work carried out to date, providing a philosophical discussion of the scientific process of analyzing results and the pitfalls that accompany it. It also examines the astrobiological constraints on this possible biosphere, and implications for future research, exploration and planetary biological protection. Europa - The Ocean Moon provides a unique understanding of the Galileo images of Europa, discusses the theory of tidal processes that govern its icy ridged and disrupted surface, and examines in detail the physical setting that might sustain extra-terrestrial life in Europa's ocean and icy crust.

  9. Children's Comprehension of Object Relative Sentences: It's Extant Language Knowledge That Matters, Not Domain-General Working Memory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rusli, Yazmin Ahmad; Montgomery, James W.

    2017-01-01

    Purpose: The aim of this study was to determine whether extant language (lexical) knowledge or domain-general working memory is the better predictor of comprehension of object relative sentences for children with typical development. We hypothesized that extant language knowledge, not domain-general working memory, is the better predictor. Method:…

  10. Link between ore bodies and biosphere concentrations of uranium

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gordon, S.

    1992-01-01

    A literature review of uranium exploration studies was carried out to determine the size and concentration of uranium anomalies in the biosphere. Fourteen sites were studied and uranium data were obtained for rocks, water-borne sediments, surface waters, groundwaters, soils and plants. Detailed descriptions of the study areas and of their uranium anomalies are provided. No statistical analyses of the data of anomaly sizes was undertaken because of the variation in the scale of the studies and in the threshold values used and the small number of samples for each medium. The threshold values and the size of the anomaly were found to be dependent on the scale of the study and of the sampling density. Sediments and surface waters were found to have the largest uranium dispersion. Although there was a wide range in the anomaly sizes it was possible to assign typical values for each medium. Based on a typical source of 1 km 2 in the rock it was found that anomalies of similar size as the source are expected in soils and plants, anomalies twice as large are typical for sediments and surface waters and anomalies of smaller areas than the source are possible for groundwater. Some limitations to providing typical groundwater anomaly sizes are outlined. Typical maximum concentrations for the sites studied were greater than 1300 ppm for rock, 10 to 110 ppm for sediment, and 5 ppb for surface waters. No typical values were observed for groundwater, soils and plants. Susceptibility of the host rock to leaching and the presence of discharge zones were assessed for their role in biosphere anomalies

  11. Network Analysis of Earth's Co-Evolving Geosphere and Biosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hazen, R. M.; Eleish, A.; Liu, C.; Morrison, S. M.; Meyer, M.; Consortium, K. D.

    2017-12-01

    A fundamental goal of Earth science is the deep understanding of Earth's dynamic, co-evolving geosphere and biosphere through deep time. Network analysis of geo- and bio- `big data' provides an interactive, quantitative, and predictive visualization framework to explore complex and otherwise hidden high-dimension features of diversity, distribution, and change in the evolution of Earth's geochemistry, mineralogy, paleobiology, and biochemistry [1]. Networks also facilitate quantitative comparison of different geological time periods, tectonic settings, and geographical regions, as well as different planets and moons, through network metrics, including density, centralization, diameter, and transitivity.We render networks by employing data related to geographical, paragenetic, environmental, or structural relationships among minerals, fossils, proteins, and microbial taxa. An important recent finding is that the topography of many networks reflects parameters not explicitly incorporated in constructing the network. For example, networks for minerals, fossils, and protein structures reveal embedded qualitative time axes, with additional network geometries possibly related to extinction and/or other punctuation events (see Figure). Other axes related to chemical activities and volatile fugacities, as well as pressure and/or depth of formation, may also emerge from network analysis. These patterns provide new insights into the way planets evolve, especially Earth's co-evolving geosphere and biosphere. 1. Morrison, S.M. et al. (2017) Network analysis of mineralogical systems. American Mineralogist 102, in press. Figure Caption: A network of Phanerozoic Era fossil animals from the past 540 million years includes blue, red, and black circles (nodes) representing family-level taxa and grey lines (links) between coexisting families. Age information was not used in the construction of this network; nevertheless an intrinsic timeline is embedded in the network topology. In

  12. Comets, Carbonaceous Meteorites, and the Origin of the Biosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoover, Richard B.

    2007-01-01

    Evidence for indigenous microfossils in carbonaceous meteorites suggests that the paradigm of the endogenous origin of life on Earth should be reconsidered. It is now widely accepted that comets and carbonaceous meteorites played an important role in the delivery of water, organics and life critical biogenic elements to the early Earth and facilitated the origin and evolution of the Earth's Biosphere. However; the detection of embedded microfossils and mats in carbonaceous meteorites implies that comets and meteorites may have played a direct role in the delivery of intact microorganisms and that the Biosphere may extend far into the Cosmos. Recent space observations have found the nuclei of comets to have very low albedos (approx.0.03) and. these jet-black surfaces become very hot (T approx. 400 K) near perihelion. This paper reviews recent observational data-on comets and suggests that liquid water pools could exist in cavities and fissures between the internal ices and rocks and the exterior carbonaceous crust. The presence of light and liquid water near the surface of the nucleus enhances the possibility that comets could harbor prokaryotic extremophiles (e.g., cyanobacteria) capable of growth over a wide range of temperatures. The hypothesis that comets are the parent bodies of the CI1 and the CM2 carbonaceous meteorites is advanced. Electron microscopy images will be presented showing forms interpreted as indigenous-microfossils embedded' in freshly. fractured interior surfaces of the Orgueil (CI1) and Murchison (CM2) meteorites. These forms are consistent in size and morphologies with known morphotypes of all five orders of Cyanobacteriaceae: Energy Dispersive X-ray Spectroscopy (EDS) elemental data shows that the meteoritic forms have anomalous C/O; C/N; and C/S as compared with modern extremophiles and cyanobacteria. These images and spectral data indicate that the clearly biogenic and embedded remains cannot be interpreted as recent biological

  13. Low Pressure Tolerance by Methanogens in an Aqueous Environment: Implications for Subsurface Life on Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mickol, R. L.; Kral, T. A.

    2017-12-01

    The low pressure at the surface of Mars (average: 6 mbar) is one potentially biocidal factor that any extant life on the planet would need to endure. Near subsurface life, while shielded from ultraviolet radiation, would also be exposed to this low pressure environment, as the atmospheric gas-phase pressure increases very gradually with depth. Few studies have focused on low pressure as inhibitory to the growth or survival of organisms. However, recent work has uncovered a potential constraint to bacterial growth below 25 mbar. The study reported here tested the survivability of four methanogen species ( Methanothermobacter wolfeii, Methanosarcina barkeri, Methanobacterium formicicum, Methanococcus maripaludis) under low pressure conditions approaching average martian surface pressure (6 mbar - 143 mbar) in an aqueous environment. Each of the four species survived exposure of varying length (3 days - 21 days) at pressures down to 6 mbar. This research is an important stepping-stone to determining if methanogens can actively metabolize/grow under these low pressures. Additionally, the recently discovered recurring slope lineae suggest that liquid water columns may connect the surface to deeper levels in the subsurface. If that is the case, any organism being transported in the water column would encounter the changing pressures during the transport.

  14. Low Pressure Tolerance by Methanogens in an Aqueous Environment: Implications for Subsurface Life on Mars.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mickol, R L; Kral, T A

    2017-12-01

    The low pressure at the surface of Mars (average: 6 mbar) is one potentially biocidal factor that any extant life on the planet would need to endure. Near subsurface life, while shielded from ultraviolet radiation, would also be exposed to this low pressure environment, as the atmospheric gas-phase pressure increases very gradually with depth. Few studies have focused on low pressure as inhibitory to the growth or survival of organisms. However, recent work has uncovered a potential constraint to bacterial growth below 25 mbar. The study reported here tested the survivability of four methanogen species (Methanothermobacter wolfeii, Methanosarcina barkeri, Methanobacterium formicicum, Methanococcus maripaludis) under low pressure conditions approaching average martian surface pressure (6 mbar - 143 mbar) in an aqueous environment. Each of the four species survived exposure of varying length (3 days - 21 days) at pressures down to 6 mbar. This research is an important stepping-stone to determining if methanogens can actively metabolize/grow under these low pressures. Additionally, the recently discovered recurring slope lineae suggest that liquid water columns may connect the surface to deeper levels in the subsurface. If that is the case, any organism being transported in the water column would encounter the changing pressures during the transport.

  15. Intelligent SUBsurface Quality : Intelligent use of subsurface infrastructure for surface quality

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hooimeijer, F.L.; Kuzniecow Bacchin, T.; Lafleur, F.; van de Ven, F.H.M.; Clemens, F.H.L.R.; Broere, W.; Laumann, S.J.; Klaassen, R.G.; Marinetti, C.

    2016-01-01

    This project focuses on the urban renewal of (delta) metropolises and concentrates on the question how to design resilient, durable (subsurface) infrastructure in urban renewal projects using parameters of the natural system – linking in an efficient way (a) water cycle, (b) soil and subsurface

  16. SUBSURFACE REPOSITORY INTEGRATED CONTROL SYSTEM DESIGN

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    C.J. Fernado

    1998-01-01

    The purpose of this document is to develop preliminary high-level functional and physical control system architectures for the proposed subsurface repository at Yucca Mountain. This document outlines overall control system concepts that encompass and integrate the many diverse systems being considered for use within the subsurface repository. This document presents integrated design concepts for monitoring and controlling the diverse set of subsurface operations. The subsurface repository design will be composed of a series of diverse systems that will be integrated to accomplish a set of overall functions and objectives. The subsurface repository contains several Instrumentation and Control (I andC) related systems including: waste emplacement systems, ventilation systems, communication systems, radiation monitoring systems, rail transportation systems, ground control monitoring systems, utility monitoring systems (electrical, lighting, water, compressed air, etc.), fire detection and protection systems, retrieval systems, and performance confirmation systems. Each of these systems involve some level of I andC and will typically be integrated over a data communication network. The subsurface I andC systems will also integrate with multiple surface-based site-wide systems such as emergency response, health physics, security and safeguards, communications, utilities and others. The scope and primary objectives of this analysis are to: (1) Identify preliminary system level functions and interface needs (Presented in the functional diagrams in Section 7.2). (2) Examine the overall system complexity and determine how and on what levels these control systems will be controlled and integrated (Presented in Section 7.2). (3) Develop a preliminary subsurface facility-wide design for an overall control system architecture, and depict this design by a series of control system functional block diagrams (Presented in Section 7.2). (4) Develop a series of physical architectures

  17. SUBSURFACE REPOSITORY INTEGRATED CONTROL SYSTEM DESIGN

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    C.J. Fernado

    1998-09-17

    The purpose of this document is to develop preliminary high-level functional and physical control system architectures for the proposed subsurface repository at Yucca Mountain. This document outlines overall control system concepts that encompass and integrate the many diverse systems being considered for use within the subsurface repository. This document presents integrated design concepts for monitoring and controlling the diverse set of subsurface operations. The subsurface repository design will be composed of a series of diverse systems that will be integrated to accomplish a set of overall functions and objectives. The subsurface repository contains several Instrumentation and Control (I&C) related systems including: waste emplacement systems, ventilation systems, communication systems, radiation monitoring systems, rail transportation systems, ground control monitoring systems, utility monitoring systems (electrical, lighting, water, compressed air, etc.), fire detection and protection systems, retrieval systems, and performance confirmation systems. Each of these systems involve some level of I&C and will typically be integrated over a data communication network. The subsurface I&C systems will also integrate with multiple surface-based site-wide systems such as emergency response, health physics, security and safeguards, communications, utilities and others. The scope and primary objectives of this analysis are to: (1) Identify preliminary system level functions and interface needs (Presented in the functional diagrams in Section 7.2). (2) Examine the overall system complexity and determine how and on what levels these control systems will be controlled and integrated (Presented in Section 7.2). (3) Develop a preliminary subsurface facility-wide design for an overall control system architecture, and depict this design by a series of control system functional block diagrams (Presented in Section 7.2). (4) Develop a series of physical architectures that

  18. Phospholipid anaysis of extant microbiota for monitoring in situ bioremediation effectiveness

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pinkart, H.C.; Ringelberg, D.B.; Stair, J.O.; Sutton, S.D..; Pfiffner, S.M.; White, D.C.

    1995-01-01

    Two sites undergoing bioremediation were studied using the signature lipid biomarker (SLB) technique. This technique isolates microbial lipid moieties specifically related to viable biomass and to both prokaryotic and eukaryotic biosynthetic pathways. The first site was a South Pacific atoll heavily contaminated with petroleum hydrocarbons. The second site was a mine waste reclamation area. The SLB technique was applied to quantitate directly the viable biomass, community structure, and nutritional/physiological status of the microbiota in the soils and subsurface sediments of these sites. All depths sampled at the Kwajalein Atoll site showed an increase in biomass that correlated with the co-addition of air, water, and nutrients. Monoenoic fatty acids increased in abundance with the nutrient amendment, which suggested an increase in gram-negative bacterial population. Ratios of specific phospholipid fatty acids indicative of nutritional stress decreased with the nutrient amendment. Samples taken from the mine reclamation site showed increases in total microbial biomass and in Thiobacillus biomass in the plots treated with lime and bactericide, especially when a cover soil was added. The plot treated with bactericide and buffered lime without the cover soil showed some decrease in Thiobacillus numbers, but was still slightly higher than that observed in the control plots

  19. Microbial colonisation in diverse surface soil types in Surtsey and diversity analysis of its subsurface microbiota

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marteinsson, V.; Klonowski, A.; Reynisson, E.; Vannier, P.; Sigurdsson, B. D.; Ólafsson, M.

    2014-09-01

    Colonisation of life on Surtsey has been observed systematically since the formation of the island 50 years ago. Although the first colonisers were prokaryotes, such as bacteria and blue-green algae, most studies have been focusing on settlement of plants and animals but less on microbial succession. To explore microbial colonization in diverse soils and the influence of associate vegetation and birds on numbers of environmental bacteria, we collected 45 samples from different soils types on the surface of the island. Total viable bacterial counts were performed with plate count at 22, 30 and 37 °C for all soils samples and the amount of organic matter and nitrogen (N) was measured. Selected samples were also tested for coliforms, faecal coliforms aerobic and anaerobic bacteria. The deep subsurface biosphere was investigated by collecting liquid subsurface samples from a 182 m borehole with a special sampler. Diversity analysis of uncultivated biota in samples was performed by 16S rRNA gene sequences analysis and cultivation. Correlation was observed between N deficits and the number of microorganisms in surface soils samples. The lowest number of bacteria (1 × 104-1 × 105 g-1) was detected in almost pure pumice but the count was significant higher (1 × 106-1 × 109 g-1) in vegetated soil or pumice with bird droppings. The number of faecal bacteria correlated also to the total number of bacteria and type of soil. Bacteria belonging to Enterobacteriaceae were only detected in vegetated and samples containing bird droppings. The human pathogens Salmonella, Campylobacter and Listeria were not in any sample. Both thermophilic bacteria and archaea 16S rDNA sequences were found in the subsurface samples collected at 145 m and 172 m depth at 80 °C and 54 °C, respectively, but no growth was observed in enrichments. The microbiota sequences generally showed low affiliation to any known 16S rRNA gene sequences.

  20. Microbial colonization in diverse surface soil types in Surtsey and diversity analysis of its subsurface microbiota

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marteinsson, V.; Klonowski, A.; Reynisson, E.; Vannier, P.; Sigurdsson, B. D.; Ólafsson, M.

    2015-02-01

    Colonization of life on Surtsey has been observed systematically since the formation of the island 50 years ago. Although the first colonisers were prokaryotes, such as bacteria and blue-green algae, most studies have been focused on the settlement of plants and animals but less on microbial succession. To explore microbial colonization in diverse soils and the influence of associated vegetation and birds on numbers of environmental bacteria, we collected 45 samples from different soil types on the surface of the island. Total viable bacterial counts were performed with the plate count method at 22, 30 and 37 °C for all soil samples, and the amount of organic matter and nitrogen (N) was measured. Selected samples were also tested for coliforms, faecal coliforms and aerobic and anaerobic bacteria. The subsurface biosphere was investigated by collecting liquid subsurface samples from a 181 m borehole with a special sampler. Diversity analysis of uncultivated biota in samples was performed by 16S rRNA gene sequences analysis and cultivation. Correlation was observed between nutrient deficits and the number of microorganisms in surface soil samples. The lowest number of bacteria (1 × 104-1 × 105 cells g-1) was detected in almost pure pumice but the count was significantly higher (1 × 106-1 × 109 cells g-1) in vegetated soil or pumice with bird droppings. The number of faecal bacteria correlated also to the total number of bacteria and type of soil. Bacteria belonging to Enterobacteriaceae were only detected in vegetated samples and samples containing bird droppings. The human pathogens Salmonella, Campylobacter and Listeria were not in any sample. Both thermophilic bacteria and archaea 16S rDNA sequences were found in the subsurface samples collected at 145 and 172 m depth at 80 and 54 °C, respectively, but no growth was observed in enrichments. The microbiota sequences generally showed low affiliation to any known 16S rRNA gene sequences.

  1. Subsurface barrier verification technologies, informal report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Heiser, J.H.

    1994-06-01

    One of the more promising remediation options available to the DOE waste management community is subsurface barriers. Some of the uses of subsurface barriers include surrounding and/or containing buried waste, as secondary confinement of underground storage tanks, to direct or contain subsurface contaminant plumes and to restrict remediation methods, such as vacuum extraction, to a limited area. To be most effective the barriers should be continuous and depending on use, have few or no breaches. A breach may be formed through numerous pathways including: discontinuous grout application, from joints between panels and from cracking due to grout curing or wet-dry cycling. The ability to verify barrier integrity is valuable to the DOE, EPA, and commercial sector and will be required to gain full public acceptance of subsurface barriers as either primary or secondary confinement at waste sites. It is recognized that no suitable method exists for the verification of an emplaced barrier's integrity. The large size and deep placement of subsurface barriers makes detection of leaks challenging. This becomes magnified if the permissible leakage from the site is low. Detection of small cracks (fractions of an inch) at depths of 100 feet or more has not been possible using existing surface geophysical techniques. Compounding the problem of locating flaws in a barrier is the fact that no placement technology can guarantee the completeness or integrity of the emplaced barrier. This report summarizes several commonly used or promising technologies that have been or may be applied to in-situ barrier continuity verification

  2. Subsurface Science Program Bibliography, 1985--1992

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1992-08-01

    The Subsurface Science Program sponsors long-term basic research on (1) the fundamental physical, chemical, and biological mechanisms that control the reactivity, mobilization, stability, and transport of chemical mixtures in subsoils and ground water; (2) hydrogeology, including the hydraulic, microbiological, and geochemical properties of the vadose and saturated zones that control contaminant mobility and stability, including predictive modeling of coupled hydraulic-geochemical-microbial processes; and (3) the microbiology of deep sediments and ground water. TWs research, focused as it is on the natural subsurface environments that are most significantly affected by the more than 40 years of waste generation and disposal at DOE sites, is making important contributions to cleanup of DOE sites. Past DOE waste-disposal practices have resulted in subsurface contamination at DOE sites by unique combinations of radioactive materials and organic and inorganic chemicals (including heavy metals), which make site cleanup particularly difficult. The long- term (10- to 30-year) goal of the Subsurface Science Program is to provide a foundation of fundamental knowledge that can be used to reduce environmental risks and to provide a sound scientific basis for cost-effective cleanup strategies. The Subsurface Science Program is organized into nine interdisciplinary subprograms, or areas of basic research emphasis. The subprograms currently cover the areas of Co-Contaminant Chemistry, Colloids/Biocolloids, Multiphase Fluid Flow, Biodegradation/ Microbial Physiology, Deep Microbiology, Coupled Processes, Field-Scale (Natural Heterogeneity and Scale), and Environmental Science Research Center

  3. Subsurface Shielding Source Term Specification Calculation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    S.Su

    2001-01-01

    The purpose of this calculation is to establish appropriate and defensible waste-package radiation source terms for use in repository subsurface shielding design. This calculation supports the shielding design for the waste emplacement and retrieval system, and subsurface facility system. The objective is to identify the limiting waste package and specify its associated source terms including source strengths and energy spectra. Consistent with the Technical Work Plan for Subsurface Design Section FY 01 Work Activities (CRWMS M and O 2001, p. 15), the scope of work includes the following: (1) Review source terms generated by the Waste Package Department (WPD) for various waste forms and waste package types, and compile them for shielding-specific applications. (2) Determine acceptable waste package specific source terms for use in subsurface shielding design, using a reasonable and defensible methodology that is not unduly conservative. This calculation is associated with the engineering and design activity for the waste emplacement and retrieval system, and subsurface facility system. The technical work plan for this calculation is provided in CRWMS M and O 2001. Development and performance of this calculation conforms to the procedure, AP-3.12Q, Calculations

  4. Lithosphere-biosphere interaction at a shallow-sea hydrothermal vent site; Hot Lake, Panarea, Italy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Chia-I.; Amann, Rudolf; Amend, Jan P.; Bach, Wolfgang; Brunner, Benjamin; Meyerdierks, Anke; Price, Roy E.; Schubotz, Florence; Summons, Roger; Wenzhöfer, Frank

    2010-05-01

    Deep-Sea hydrothermal systems are unique habitats for microbial life with primary production based on chemosynthesis and are considered to be windows to the subsurface biosphere. It is often overlooked, however, that their far more accessible shallow-sea counterparts are also valuable targets to study the effects of hydrothermal activity on geology, seawater chemistry and finally, on microbial life. Such an area of shallow marine hydrothermal venting is observed approximately 2.5 km east of Panarea Island (Sicily, Italy). This system is characterized by fluid temperatures of up to 135° C, gas emissions dominated by CO2 and precipitation of elemental sulfur on the seafloor. In an interdisciplinary project to investigate the influence of geofuels on marine microbiota, sediment cores and pore fluids were sampled for geological and geochemical analyses. An attempt was made to link these geochemical data with a characterization of the microbial community. One of the investigated sites (Lago Caldo, Hot Lake) is an oval-shaped (~10 by 6 meters) shallow (~2.5 m deep) depression covered by elemental sulfur. The sediments in this depression are strongly affected by hydrothermal activity: the pH of pore fluids is in a range between 5 and 6; the salinity is approximately two times higher than seawater. In situ temperatures of 36° C and 74° C (10 cm sediment depth) at two different locations within Hot Lake indicate variability in hydrothermal flux. The sediment surface layer is anoxic, and with increasing depth from the sediment-water interface, sulfate concentrations decrease from ~30 mM to less than 10 mM, whereas sulfide concentrations increase from less than 50 μm to ~1000 μm at 25 cm sediment depth, thus suggesting a higher potential for energy gain based on sulfur disequilibrium. As indicated by the variability in the sediment temperatures at 10 cm, fluid fluxes and mixing with seawater is not found to be uniform at Hot Lake. This is reflected in variability of the

  5. Public Relations Crisis and Social Media: An Investigation into Extant and Prospective Consumers’ Perceptions through the Lens of Attribution Theory’

    OpenAIRE

    Zamani, Efpraxia D.; Kasimati, A. E.; Giaglis, G. M.

    2014-01-01

    Online social media has shifted the balance of power from businesses to consumers, with consumers now being able to share information almost unrestrictedly in real-time. As a result, an effort to suppress what may be considered as harmful information can easily backfire, causing the information to instantly spread through user ties. However, what is considered important in such occasions is the way extant and prospective customers may interpret such crises. In this paper, we discuss the case ...

  6. Seed plant phylogeny inferred from all three plant genomes: Monophyly of extant gymnosperms and origin of Gnetales from conifers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chaw, Shu-Miaw; Parkinson, Christopher L.; Cheng, Yuchang; Vincent, Thomas M.; Palmer, Jeffrey D.

    2000-01-01

    Phylogenetic relationships among the five groups of extant seed plants are presently quite unclear. For example, morphological studies consistently identify the Gnetales as the extant sister group to angiosperms (the so-called “anthophyte” hypothesis), whereas a number of molecular studies recover gymnosperm monophyly, and few agree with the morphology-based placement of Gnetales. To better resolve these and other unsettled issues, we have generated a new molecular data set of mitochondrial small subunit rRNA sequences, and have analyzed these data together with comparable data sets for the nuclear small subunit rRNA gene and the chloroplast rbcL gene. All nuclear analyses strongly ally Gnetales with a monophyletic conifers, whereas all mitochondrial analyses and those chloroplast analyses that take into account saturation of third-codon position transitions actually place Gnetales within conifers, as the sister group to the Pinaceae. Combined analyses of all three genes strongly support this latter relationship, which to our knowledge has never been suggested before. The combined analyses also strongly support monophyly of extant gymnosperms, with cycads identified as the basal-most group of gymnosperms, Ginkgo as the next basal, and all conifers except for Pinaceae as sister to the Gnetales + Pinaceae clade. According to these findings, the Gnetales may be viewed as extremely divergent conifers, and the many morphological similarities between angiosperms and Gnetales (e.g., double fertilization and flower-like reproductive structures) arose independently. PMID:10760277

  7. Evolution of opercle shape in cichlid fishes from Lake Tanganyika - adaptive trait interactions in extant and extinct species flocks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilson, Laura A B; Colombo, Marco; Sánchez-Villagra, Marcelo R; Salzburger, Walter

    2015-11-20

    Phenotype-environment correlations and the evolution of trait interactions in adaptive radiations have been widely studied to gain insight into the dynamics underpinning rapid species diversification. In this study we explore the phenotype-environment correlation and evolution of operculum shape in cichlid fishes using an outline-based geometric morphometric approach combined with stable isotope indicators of macrohabitat and trophic niche. We then apply our method to a sample of extinct saurichthyid fishes, a highly diverse and near globally distributed group of actinopterygians occurring throughout the Triassic, to assess the utility of extant data to inform our understanding of ecomorphological evolution in extinct species flocks. A series of comparative methods were used to analyze shape data for 54 extant species of cichlids (N = 416), and 6 extinct species of saurichthyids (N = 44). Results provide evidence for a relationship between operculum shape and feeding ecology, a concentration in shape evolution towards present along with evidence for convergence in form, and significant correlation between the major axes of shape change and measures of gut length and body elongation. The operculum is one of few features that can be compared in extant and extinct groups, enabling reconstruction of phenotype-environment interactions and modes of evolutionary diversification in deep time.

  8. Extended biosphere dataset for safety assessment of radioactive waste geological disposal

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kato, Tomoko; Suzuki, Yuji

    2007-01-01

    JAEA has an on-going programme of research and development relating to the safety assessment of the deep geological disposal systems of high-level radioactive waste (HLW) and transuranic waste (TRU). In the safety assessment of HLW and TRU disposal systems, biosphere assessment is necessary to estimate future radiological impacts on human beings (e.g. radiation dose). In order to estimate radiation dose, consideration needs to be given to the biosphere into which future releases of radionuclides might occur and to the associated future human behaviour. The data of some biosphere parameters needed to be updated by appropriate data sources for generic and site-specific biosphere assessment to improve reliability for the biosphere assessment, because some data published in the 1980's or the early 90's were found to be inappropriate for the recent biosphere assessment. Therefore, data of the significant parameters (especially for element-dependent) were set up on the basis of recent information, to update the generic biosphere dataset. (author)

  9. Methodology for biosphere analysis in high level waste disposal. Application to the Mediterranean system

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pinedo, P.; Simon, I.; Aguero, A.; Cancio, D.

    2000-01-01

    For several years CIEMAT has been developing for ENRESA a conceptual approach and tools to support the modelling of the migration and accumulation of radionuclides within the biosphere once those radionuclides are released or reach one or more parts of the biosphere (atmosphere, water bodies or soils). The model development also includes evaluation of radiological impacts arising from the resulting distribution of radionuclides in the biosphere. At the time when the methodology was proposed, the level of development of the different aspects proposed within it was quite heterogeneous and, while aspects of radionuclide transport modelling were already well developed in theoretical and practical terms, other aspects, like the procedure for conceptual model development and the description of biosphere systems representatives of the long term needed further developments. The developments have been performed in parallel to international projects, within which there were and are an active participation, mainly, the BIOphere Models Validation Study (BIOMOVS II) international Project, within which it was developed the so called Reference Biosphere Methodology and, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Programme on BIOsphere Modelling and ASSessment methods (BIOMASS), that is under development at present. The methodology been made takes account of these international developments. The purpose of the work summarised herein is the application of the methodology to the 1997 performance assessment (PA) exercise made by ENRESA, using from it the general and particular information about the assessment context, the source term, and the geo-biosphere interface data. (author)

  10. Ciliates and the rare biosphere-community ecology and population dynamics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weisse, Thomas

    2014-01-01

    Application of deep sequencing technologies to environmental samples and some detailed morphological studies suggest that there is a vast, yet unexplored rare ciliate biosphere, tentatively defined in terms of operational taxonomic units. However, very few studies complemented molecular and phylogenetic data with morphological and ecological descriptions of the species inventory. This is mainly because the sampling effort increases strongly with decreasing species abundance. In spite of this limited knowledge, it is clear that species that are rare under certain environmental conditions (temporal rare biosphere) may become abundant when the physical, chemical, and biological variables of their habitat change. Furthermore, some species may always be present in low numbers if their dispersal rates are exceedingly high (accidental rare biosphere). An intriguing question is whether there are some species that are always rare, i.e., in every suitable environment. This permanent rare biosphere is conceptually different from the temporal rare biosphere. This review characterizes typical aquatic habitats of the rare ciliate biosphere, portrays different scenarios under which some or even many species may be permanently rare (background fauna), and identifies some fundamental questions that need to be addressed to achieve a better understanding of the population dynamics of the rare ciliate biosphere. © 2014 The Authors The Journal of Eukaryotic Microbiology published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. on behalf of International Society of Protistologists.

  11. Application of a generic biosphere model for dose assessments to five European sites

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chen, Q; Kowe, R; Mobbs, S F; Proehl, G; Olyslaegers, G; Zeevaert, T; Kanyar, B; Pinedo, P; Simon, I; Bergstroem, U; Hallberg, B; Jones, J A; Oatway, W B; Watson, S J

    2006-01-01

    The BIOMOSA (BIOsphere MOdels for Safety Assessment of radioactive waste disposal) project was part of the EC fifth framework research programme. The main goal of this project was to improve the scientific basis for the application of biosphere models in the framework of long-term safety studies of radioactive waste disposal facilities and to enhance the confidence in using biosphere models for performance assessments. The study focused on the development and application of a generic biosphere tool BIOGEM (BIOsphere GEneric Model) using the IAEA BIOMASS reference biosphere methodology, and the comparison between BIOGEM and five site-specific biosphere models. The site-specific models and the generic model were applied to five typical locations in Europe, resulting in estimates of the annual effective individual doses to the critical groups and the ranking of the importance of the exposure pathways for each of the sites. Uncertainty in the results was also estimated by means of stochastic calculations based on variation of the site-specific parameter values. This paper describes the generic model and the deterministic and stochastic results obtained when it was applied to the five sites. Details of the site-specific models and the corresponding results are described in two companion papers. This paper also presents a comparison of the results between the generic model and site-specific models. In general, there was an acceptable agreement of the BIOGEM for both the deterministic and stochastic results with the results from the site-specific models

  12. Subsurface Contaminants Focus Area annual report 1997

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1997-01-01

    In support of its vision for technological excellence, the Subsurface Contaminants Focus Area (SCFA) has identified three strategic goals. The three goals of the SCFA are: Contain and/or stabilize contamination sources that pose an imminent threat to surface and ground waters; Delineate DNAPL contamination in the subsurface and remediate DNAPL-contaminated soils and ground water; and Remove a full range of metal and radionuclide contamination in soils and ground water. To meet the challenges of remediating subsurface contaminants in soils and ground water, SCFA funded more than 40 technologies in fiscal year 1997. These technologies are grouped according to the following product lines: Dense Nonaqueous-Phase Liquids; Metals and Radionuclides; Source Term Containment; and Source Term Remediation. This report briefly describes the SCFA 1997 technologies and showcases a few key technologies in each product line

  13. Complete Subsurface Elemental Composition Measurements With PING

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parsons, A. M.

    2012-01-01

    The Probing In situ with Neutrons and Gamma rays (PING) instrument will measure the complete bulk elemental composition of the subsurface of Mars as well as any other solid planetary body. PING can thus be a highly effective tool for both detailed local geochemistry science investigations and precision measurements of Mars subsurface reSOurces in preparation for future human exploration. As such, PING is thus fully capable of meeting a majority of both ncar and far term elements in Challenge #1 presented for this conference. Measuring the ncar subsurface composition of Mars will enable many of the MEPAG science goals and will be key to filling an important Strategic Knowledge Gap with regard to In situ Resources Utilization (ISRU) needs for human exploration. [1, 2] PING will thus fill an important niche in the Mars Exploration Program.

  14. Biosphere scenario development. An interim report of an SKI, SSI, SKB working group

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1989-11-01

    The Swedish Nuclear Power Inspectorate and the Swedish Nuclear Fuel and Waste Management Co have initiated a project for the development of scenarios for the behaviour of radionuclides in high level waste following deep geological disposal. The main objective is to develop a general consensus of scenarios and conceptual models. Within the project a biosphere scenarios working group was initiated to consider specific questions of the biosphere. This report describes the results of the group's deliberations up to the end of July 1989. A methodology is presented for the development of biosphere scenarios which may be considered alongside scenarios for radionuclide behaviour in the near field and geosphere. Two major biosphere elements affecting processes in the surface environment have been recognised, climate and development. Alternative states for climate and level of development are suggested and each combination can be considered with one or more of a range of biosphere receptors, such as a river or a lake. The features, events and processes relevant to each receptor are presented. Consideration is then given to biosphere assumptions for both gradual and direct releases from the geosphere, as well as biosphere effects on the repository near field or geosphere. The amount of screening which can be done at this stage to limit the number of biosphere scenarios is small. However, considerable potential exists once more details are available for geosphere release scenarios. It may be appropriate to further develop biosphere scenarios, specific to each geosphere release scenario. It may also be appropriate to consider scenarios specifically in relation to the individual radionuclides which dominate geosphere releases. Both these possibilities could result in considerably reduced requirements for calculations

  15. Application of the Biosphere Assessment Methodology to the ENRESA, 1997 Performance and Safety Assessment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pinedo, P.; Simon, I.; Aguero, A.

    1998-01-01

    For several years CIEMAT has been developing for ENRESA knowledge and tools to support the modelling of the migration and accumulation of radionuclides within the biosphere once those radionuclides are released or reach one or more parts of the biosphere (atmosphere, water bodies or soils). The model development also includes evaluation of radiological impacts arising from the resulting distribution of radionuclides in the biosphere. In 1996, a Methodology to analyse the biosphere in this context proposed to ENRESA. The level of development of the different aspects proposed within the Methodology was quite heterogeneous and, while aspects of radionuclide transport modelling were already well developed in theoretical and practical terms, other aspects like the procedure for conceptual model development and the description of biosphere system representatives of the long term needed further developments. At present, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Programme on Biosphere Modelling and Assessment (BIOMASS) in collaboration with several national organizations, ENRESA and CIEMAT among them, is working to complete and augment the Reference Biosphere Methodology and to produce some practical descriptions of Reference Systems. The overall purpose of this document is to apply the Methodology, taking account of on-going developments in biosphere modelling, to the last performance assessment (PA) exercise made by ENRESA (ENRESA, 1997), using from it the general and particular information about the assessment context, radionuclide information, geosphere and geobiosphere interface data. There are three particular objectives to this work: (a) to determine the practicability of the Methodology in an application to a realistic assessment situation, (b) To compare and contrast previous biosphere modelling in HLW PA and, (c) to test software development related with data management and modelling. (Author) 42 refs

  16. Improving the biodegradative capacity of subsurface bacteria

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Romine, M.F.; Brockman, F.J.

    1993-04-01

    The continual release of large volumes of synthetic materials into the environment by agricultural and industrial sources over the last few decades has resulted in pollution of the subsurface environment. Cleanup has been difficult because of the relative inaccessibility of the contaminants caused by their wide dispersal in the deep subsurface, often at low concentrations and in large volumes. As a possible solution for these problems, interest in the introduction of biodegradative bacteria for in situ remediation of these sites has increased greatly in recent years (Timmis et al. 1988). Selection of biodegradative microbes to apply in such cleanup is limited to those strains that can survive among the native bacterial and predator community members at the particular pH, temperature, and moisture status of the site (Alexander, 1984). The use of microorganisms isolated from subsurface environments would be advantageous because the organisms are already adapted to the subsurface conditions. The options are further narrowed to strains that are able to degrade the contaminant rapidly, even in the presence of highly recalcitrant anthropogenic waste mixtures, and in conditions that do not require addition of further toxic compounds for the expression of the biodegradative capacity (Sayler et al. 1990). These obstacles can be overcome by placing the genes of well-characterized biodegradative enzymes under the control of promoters that can be regulated by inexpensive and nontoxic external factors and then moving the new genetic constructs into diverse groups of subsurface microbes. ne objective of this research is to test this hypothesis by comparing expression of two different toluene biodegradative enzymatic pathways from two different regulatable promoters in a variety of subsurface isolates

  17. MSTS - Multiphase Subsurface Transport Simulator theory manual

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    White, M.D.; Nichols, W.E.

    1993-05-01

    The US Department of Energy, through the Yucca Mountain Site Characterization Project Office, has designated the Yucca Mountain site in Nevada for detailed study as the candidate US geologic repository for spent nuclear fuel and high-level radioactive waste. Site characterization will determine the suitability of the Yucca Mountain site for the potential waste repository. If the site is determined suitable, subsequent studies and characterization will be conducted to obtain authorization from the Nuclear Regulatory Commission to construct the potential waste repository. A principal component of the characterization and licensing processes involves numerically predicting the thermal and hydrologic response of the subsurface environment of the Yucca Mountain site to the potential repository over a 10,000-year period. The thermal and hydrologic response of the subsurface environment to the repository is anticipated to include complex processes of countercurrent vapor and liquid migration, multiple-phase heat transfer, multiple-phase transport, and geochemical reactions. Numerical simulators based on mathematical descriptions of these subsurface phenomena are required to make numerical predictions of the thermal and hydrologic response of the Yucca Mountain subsurface environment The engineering simulator called the Multiphase Subsurface Transport Simulator (MSTS) was developed at the request of the Yucca Mountain Site Characterization Project Office to produce numerical predictions of subsurface flow and transport phenomena at the potential Yucca Mountain site. This document delineates the design architecture and describes the specific computational algorithms that compose MSTS. Details for using MSTS and sample problems are given in the open-quotes User's Guide and Referenceclose quotes companion document

  18. Russian biosphere reserves at the youth MAB-2017 Forum in Italy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elena A. Shuyskaya

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Russia was represented by 9 participants from Biosphere Reserves at the MAB Youth Forum in Italy. The main question of the Forum was «How to involve the young in the work of biosphere reserves?» The debate resulted in a Declaration, elaborated by participants from around the world (282 delegates from 85 countries. Measures to improve scientific cooperation, data exchange in the sphere of educational tourism and administrative management, development of joint projects in environmental education were formulated. The article contains a number of recommendations for the network of biosphere reserves in Russia, based on Seville strategy and Lima Action Plan.

  19. Herpetofauna of the Camili Biosphere Rezerve Area (Borçka, Artvin, Turkey

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Murat AFSAR

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available In this study, 15 amphibian and reptile species were recorded from 12 different localities in the Camili Biosphere Reserve, known as the first biosphere site of Turkey. Two of these species are Urodelan, four are Anuran, four are Lacertilia and five are Ophidia. Two black coloured specimens belongs to Natrix genus collected from biosphere rezerv area are compered with literature data belongs to N. megalocephala. Moreover, the population and habitat status of threatened species were investigated, required conservation measures were explained.

  20. Heating systems for heating subsurface formations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nguyen, Scott Vinh [Houston, TX; Vinegar, Harold J [Bellaire, TX

    2011-04-26

    Methods and systems for heating a subsurface formation are described herein. A heating system for a subsurface formation includes a sealed conduit positioned in an opening in the formation and a heat source. The sealed conduit includes a heat transfer fluid. The heat source provides heat to a portion of the sealed conduit to change phase of the heat transfer fluid from a liquid to a vapor. The vapor in the sealed conduit rises in the sealed conduit, condenses to transfer heat to the formation and returns to the conduit portion as a liquid.

  1. Subsurface clade of Geobacteraceae that predominates in a diversity of Fe(III)-reducing subsurface environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holmes, Dawn E.; O'Neil, Regina A.; Vrionis, Helen A.; N'Guessan, Lucie A.; Ortiz-Bernad, Irene; Larrahondo, Maria J.; Adams, Lorrie A.; Ward, Joy A.; Nicoll , Julie S.; Nevin, Kelly P.; Chavan, Milind A.; Johnson, Jessica P.; Long, Philip E.; Lovely, Derek R.

    2007-01-01

    There are distinct differences in the physiology of Geobacter species available in pure culture. Therefore, to understand the ecology of Geobacter species in subsurface environments, it is important to know which species predominate. Clone libraries were assembled with 16S rRNA genes and transcripts amplified from three subsurface environments in which Geobacter species are known to be important members of the microbial community: (1) a uranium-contaminated aquifer located in Rifle, CO, USA undergoing in situ bioremediation; (2) an acetate-impacted aquifer that serves as an analog for the long-term acetate amendments proposed for in situ uranium bioremediation and (3) a petroleum-contaminated aquifer in which Geobacter species play a role in the oxidation of aromatic hydrocarbons coupled with the reduction of Fe(III). The majority of Geobacteraceae 16S rRNA sequences found in these environments clustered in a phylogenetically coherent subsurface clade, which also contains a number of Geobacter species isolated from subsurface environments. Concatamers constructed with 43 Geobacter genes amplified from these sites also clustered within this subsurface clade. 16S rRNA transcript and gene sequences in the sediments and groundwater at the Rifle site were highly similar, suggesting that sampling groundwater via monitoring wells can recover the most active Geobacter species. These results suggest that further study of Geobacter species in the subsurface clade is necessary to accurately model the behavior of Geobacter species during subsurface bioremediation of metal and organic contaminants.

  2. Simulation of carbon isotope discrimination of the terrestrial biosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suits, N. S.; Denning, A. S.; Berry, J. A.; Still, C. J.; Kaduk, J.; Miller, J. B.; Baker, I. T.

    2005-03-01

    We introduce a multistage model of carbon isotope discrimination during C3 photosynthesis and global maps of C3/C4 plant ratios to an ecophysiological model of the terrestrial biosphere (SiB2) in order to predict the carbon isotope ratios of terrestrial plant carbon globally at a 1° resolution. The model is driven by observed meteorology from the European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts (ECMWF), constrained by satellite-derived Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) and run for the years 1983-1993. Modeled mean annual C3 discrimination during this period is 19.2‰; total mean annual discrimination by the terrestrial biosphere (C3 and C4 plants) is 15.9‰. We test simulation results in three ways. First, we compare the modeled response of C3 discrimination to changes in physiological stress, including daily variations in vapor pressure deficit (vpd) and monthly variations in precipitation, to observed changes in discrimination inferred from Keeling plot intercepts. Second, we compare mean δ13C ratios from selected biomes (Broadleaf, Temperate Broadleaf, Temperate Conifer, and Boreal) to the observed values from Keeling plots at these biomes. Third, we compare simulated zonal δ13C ratios in the Northern Hemisphere (20°N to 60°N) to values predicted from high-frequency variations in measured atmospheric CO2 and δ13C from terrestrially dominated sites within the NOAA-Globalview flask network. The modeled response to changes in vapor pressure deficit compares favorably to observations. Simulated discrimination in tropical forests of the Amazon basin is less sensitive to changes in monthly precipitation than is suggested by some observations. Mean model δ13C ratios for Broadleaf, Temperate Broadleaf, Temperate Conifer, and Boreal biomes compare well with the few measurements available; however, there is more variability in observations than in the simulation, and modeled δ13C values for tropical forests are heavy relative to observations

  3. Using remote-sensing and the Simple Biosphere model (SiB4) to analyze the seasonality and productivity of the terrestrial biosphere.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheeseman, M.; Denning, S.; Baker, I. T.

    2017-12-01

    Understanding the variability and seasonality of carbon fluxes from the terrestrial biosphere is integral to understanding the mechanisms and drivers of the global carbon cycle. However, there are many regions across the globe where in situ observations are sparse, such as the Amazon rainforest and the African Sahel. The latest version of the Simple-Biosphere model (SiB4) predicts a suite of biophysical variables such as terrestrial carbon flux (GPP), solar induced fluorescence (SIF), fraction of photosynthetically active radiation (FPAR), and leaf area index (LAI). By comparing modeled values to a suite of satellite and in situ observations we produce a robust analysis of the seasonality and productivity of the terrestrial biosphere in a variety of biome types across the globe.

  4. The biosphere: Problems and solutions; Proceedings of the Miami International Symposium on the Biosphere, Miami Beach, FL, April 23, 24, 1984

    Science.gov (United States)

    Veziroglu, T. N.

    The objective of the Miami International Symposium on the Biosphere was to provide a forum for the presentation of the latest research findings on the environmental effects of human activities. The topics discussed are related to biosphere reserves, environmental aspects of hydrocarbon fuels, radioactivity and nuclear waste, land management, acid rains, water quality, water resources, coastal resources management, the pollution of rivers, industrial waste, economic development and the environment, health hazards and solutions, endangered species, environmentally compatible systems, space pollution, and global considerations. Attention is given to questions regarding global security and sustainable development, environethics as a global strategy for environmental quality, a gestalt approach to the environment, potential indicators for monitoring biosphere reserves, a review of regional impacts associated with the development of U.S. synthetic fuel resources, water resources in the Soviet Union, and pollution-free pesticides.

  5. Fossilized intact polar lipids of photosynthetic organisms in ancient subsurface sediments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bauersachs, T.; Schouten, S.; Hopmans, E. C.; Sinninghe Damsté, J. S.

    2009-12-01

    In recent years, the idea of a rich microbial biosphere in the marine sea floor has been widely accepted. This so-called “deep biosphere” is estimated to contain ca. 50 % of Earth’s total prokaryotic biomass with the overall order of magnitude of microbial cells in the sea floor being the same as the biomass of all surface plant life (Whitman et al. 1998). Evidence for the existence of a deep biosphere comes, among others, from the analysis of intact polar lipids (IPLs). This approach presumes that IPLs almost instantaneously lose their polar head group after cell death and thus do not preserve on geological timescales. Consequently, IPLs in the subsurface should derive from in situ production and hence indicate the presence of living prokaryotic cells. For example, in various oceanic subsurface sediments archaeal IPLs have been found, suggesting that Archaea constitute a major fraction of the deep biosphere biomass (Lipp et al. 2008). In this study, we found IPLs of heterocystous cyanobacteria in a number of ancient and deeply buried sediments. Heterocystous cyanobacteria are strictly photoautotrophic organisms that are a common constituent of the phytoplankton community in many freshwater and brackish environments but are also encountered in the marine realm as endosymbionts of diatom species. Under nitrogen-depleted conditions, these organisms carry out nitrogen fixation in specialized cells, known as heterocysts. These cells contain a suite of heterocyst glycolipids (HGs) that have not been identified in any other organism and are thus unique biological markers for nitrogen-fixing heterocystous cyanobacteria. Using high performance liquid chromatography coupled to electrospray ionisation tandem mass spectrometry (HPLC/ESI-MS/MS), we detected HGs in Pleistocene and Pliocene Mediterranean sapropels buried up to 60 m below the seafloor. In addition, these HGs were also found in lacustrine deposits of the Oligocene Lake Enspel (35 Ma), the Eocene Lake Messel

  6. Modelling Nitrogen Transformation in Horizontal Subsurface Flow ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    A mathematical model was developed to permit dynamic simulation of nitrogen interaction in a pilot horizontal subsurface flow constructed wetland receiving effluents from primary facultative pond. The system was planted with Phragmites mauritianus, which was provided with root zone depth of 75 cm. The root zone was ...

  7. Electrical resistivity determination of subsurface layers, subsoil ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Electrical resistivity determination of subsurface layers, subsoil competence and soil corrosivity at and engineering site location in Akungba-Akoko, ... The study concluded that the characteristics of the earth materials in the site would be favourable to normal engineering structures/materials that may be located on it.

  8. Theoretical foundation, goals, and methodology of a new science--biospherics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shaffer, J A

    1994-01-01

    Scientific endeavor is motivated by mankind's needs, desires, and inherent nature to explore. The history of scientific revolutions involves paradigmatic breakthroughs that uncover previously unknown perspectives by which a phenomenon can be viewed. In this issue a noted scientist, Nickolai Pechurkin, gives a seminal brief on the theoretical foundation, goals, and methodology leading to a new science--biospherics. While biospherics has so far eluded a simple definition, it is not something taken from "whole cloth." Biospherics has many antecedents, but most noticeably arises from the global scale research and theory associated with the technological advances of the Space-Age. The Space-Age also created the need for totally closed life-support systems which involve experimentation with artificial biospheres.

  9. Measurements of radioactive and xenobiotic substances in the biosphere in the Netherlands 1983

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1983-01-01

    In this annual report the results and conclusions are given of measurements of radioactive and xenobiotic substances in the biosphere of the Netherlands. The measurements are coordinated by the Coordinating Committee for the Monitoring of Radioactive and Xenobiotic Substances (CCRX)

  10. Preliminary Feasibility Study of a Hybrid Solar and Modular Pumped Storage Hydro System at Biosphere 2

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lansey, Kevin [Univ. of Arizona, Tucson, AZ (United States); Hortsman, Chris [Univ. of Arizona, Tucson, AZ (United States)

    2016-10-01

    In this study, the preliminary feasibility of a hybrid solar and modular pumped storage system designed for high energy independence at Biosphere 2 is assessed. The system consists of an array of solar PV panels that generate electricity during the day to power both Biosphere 2 and a pump that sends water through a pipe to a tank at a high elevation. When solar power is not available, the water is released back down the pipe towards a tank at a lower elevation, where it passes through a hydraulic water turbine to generate hydroelectricity to power Biosphere 2. The hybrid system is sized to generate and store enough energy to enable Biosphere 2 to operate without a grid interconnection on an average day.

  11. The first IGAC scientific conference: global atmospheric-biospheric chemistry. Book of abstracts

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1993-04-01

    Various global/transfrontier air pollution problems are described. The causes of these problems are presented. The impact on ecology and biosphere are discussed. Special attention is given to the greenhouse causing agents

  12. Biosphere transport of radionuclides. First modelling by using a selected example

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bundi, A.

    1984-12-01

    The dispersion of radionuclides in the biosphere and their uptake by man via various nutritional pathways is studied using a compartment model. The sample environment is the area of the lower Limmat and Aare valleys. General considerations of the compartmental description of the biosphere are made. The problem of the description of surface features, in particular soil, sediment and water, is studied in detail using the code BIOPATH. This study is intended to be an example of how a model of the biosphere could be constructed. It is shown that this is a reasonable model to calculate the spreading of radionuclides in the biosphere and that it indicates the relative significance of individual compartments, pathways and radionuclides. Calculated values of doses to man, however, should not be used as reference data for safety analyses. (author)

  13. Assessment of dose conversion factors in a generic biosphere of a Korea HLW repository

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hwang, Y. S.; Park, J. B.; Kang, C. H.

    2002-01-01

    Radioactive species released from a waste repository migrate through engineered and natural barriers and eventually reach the biosphere. Once entered the biosphere, contaminants transport various exposure pathways and finally reach a human. In this study the full RES matrix explaining the key compartments in the biosphere and their interactions is introduced considering the characteristics of the Korean biosphere. Then the three exposure groups are identified based on the compartments of interest. The full exposure pathways and corresponding mathematical expression for mass transfer coefficients and etc are developed and applied to assess the dose conversion factors of nuclides for a specific exposure group. Dose conversion factors assessed in this study will be used for total system performance assessment of a potential Korean HLW repository

  14. Pilot Institute on Global Change on Trace Gases and the Biosphere, 1988

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eddy, J. A.; Moore, B.

    1998-01-01

    Table of Contents: Summary; Background; General Framework for a Series of Institutes on Global Change; The 1988 Pilot Institute on Global Changes: Trace Gases and the Biosphere; Budget; List of Acronyms; and Attachments.

  15. Lung anatomy and histology of the extant coelacanth shed light on the loss of air-breathing during deep-water adaptation in actinistians.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cupello, Camila; Meunier, François J; Herbin, Marc; Clément, Gaël; Brito, Paulo M

    2017-03-01

    Lungs are specialized organs originated from the posterior pharyngeal cavity and considered as plesiomorphic for osteichthyans, as they are found in extant basal actinopterygians (i.e. Polypterus ) and in all major groups of extant sarcopterygians. The presence of a vestigial lung in adult stages of the extant coelacanth Latimeria chalumnae is the result of allometric growth during ontogeny, in relation with long-time adaptation to deep water. Here, we present the first detailed histological and anatomical description of the lung of Latimeria chalumnae , providing new insights into its arrested differentiation in an air-breathing complex, mainly represented by the absence of pneumocytes and of compartmentalization in the latest ontogenetic stages.

  16. Urban design against the background of biosphere and social processes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ivanova Zinaida

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available In this article, the co-authors tackle the problem of the social sense and mission of the projects developed by urban planners and architects. The co-authors address the key issue of the present-day architectonics, that is, the ability and willingness of urban designers to give consideration to the environment, or the local landscape, to assure the harmonious co-existence of the biosphere and the needs of the society in Smart city. The co-authors compare the spatial organization principles of eastern and western cultures; they also track the patterns of their implementation in the present-day architectonics. The co-authors provide the findings of the public opinion pollabout the urban environment layout. Students of the Moscow State University of Civil Engineering (Russia acted as the respondents. The co-authors employed the findings of the document analysis and the opinion poll to develop recommendations for architects and urban designers in respect of social and ecological needs of urban residents.

  17. Radionuclide transport and dose assessment modelling in biosphere assessment 2009

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hjerpe, T.; Broed, R.

    2010-11-01

    Following the guidelines set forth by the Ministry of Trade and Industry (now Ministry of Employment and Economy), Posiva is preparing to submit a construction license application for the final disposal spent nuclear fuel at the Olkiluoto site, Finland, by the end of the year 2012. Disposal will take place in a geological repository implemented according to the KBS-3 method. The long-term safety section supporting the license application will be based on a safety case that, according to the internationally adopted definition, will be a compilation of the evidence, analyses and arguments that quantify and substantiate the safety and the level of expert confidence in the safety of the planned repository. This report documents in detail the conceptual and mathematical models and key data used in the landscape model set-up, radionuclide transport modelling, and radiological consequences analysis applied in the 2009 biosphere assessment. Resulting environmental activity concentrations in landscape model due to constant unit geosphere release rates, and the corresponding annual doses, are also calculated and presented in this report. This provides the basis for understanding the behaviour of the applied landscape model and subsequent dose calculations. (orig.)

  18. Terrestrial biosphere carbon storage under alternative climate projections

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Schaphoff, S.; Lucht, W.; Gerten, D.; Sitch, S.; Cramer, W. [Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research, P.O. Box 601203, D-14412 Potsdam (Germany); Prentice, I.C. [QUEST, Department of Earth Sciences, University of Bristol, Wills Memorial Building, Bristol, BS8 1RJ (United Kingdom)

    2006-01-15

    This study investigates commonalities and differences in projected land biosphere carbon storage among climate change projections derived from one emission scenario by five different general circulation models (GCMs). Carbon storage is studied using a global biogeochemical process model of vegetation and soil that includes dynamic treatment of changes in vegetation composition, a recently enhanced version of the Lund-Potsdam-Jena Dynamic Global Vegetation Model (LPJ-DGVM). Uncertainty in future terrestrial carbon storage due to differences in the climate projections is large. Changes by the end of the century range from -106 to +201 PgC, thus, even the sign of the response whether source or sink, is uncertain. Three out of five climate projections produce a land carbon source by the year 2100, one is approximately neutral and one a sink. A regional breakdown shows some robust qualitative features. Large areas of the boreal forest are shown as a future CO2 source, while a sink appears in the arctic. The sign of the response in tropical and sub-tropical ecosystems differs among models, due to the large variations in simulated precipitation patterns. The largest uncertainty is in the response of tropical rainforests of South America and Central Africa.

  19. Terrestrial biosphere carbon storage under alternative climate projections

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Schaphoff, S.; Lucht, W.; Gerten, D.; Sitch, S.; Cramer, W.; Prentice, I.C.

    2006-01-01

    This study investigates commonalities and differences in projected land biosphere carbon storage among climate change projections derived from one emission scenario by five different general circulation models (GCMs). Carbon storage is studied using a global biogeochemical process model of vegetation and soil that includes dynamic treatment of changes in vegetation composition, a recently enhanced version of the Lund-Potsdam-Jena Dynamic Global Vegetation Model (LPJ-DGVM). Uncertainty in future terrestrial carbon storage due to differences in the climate projections is large. Changes by the end of the century range from -106 to +201 PgC, thus, even the sign of the response whether source or sink, is uncertain. Three out of five climate projections produce a land carbon source by the year 2100, one is approximately neutral and one a sink. A regional breakdown shows some robust qualitative features. Large areas of the boreal forest are shown as a future CO2 source, while a sink appears in the arctic. The sign of the response in tropical and sub-tropical ecosystems differs among models, due to the large variations in simulated precipitation patterns. The largest uncertainty is in the response of tropical rainforests of South America and Central Africa

  20. Novel N4 Bacteriophages Prevail in the Cold Biosphere.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhan, Yuanchao; Buchan, Alison; Chen, Feng

    2015-08-01

    Coliphage N4 is a lytic bacteriophage discovered nearly half a century ago, and it was considered to be a "genetic orphan" until very recently, when several additional N4-like phages were discovered to infect nonenteric bacterial hosts. Interest in this genus of phages is stimulated by their unique genetic features and propagation strategies. To better understand the ecology of N4-like phages, we investigated the diversity and geographic patterns of N4-like phages by examining 56 Chesapeake Bay viral communities, using a PCR-clone library approach targeting a diagnostic N4-like DNA polymerase gene. Many new lineages of N4-like phages were found in the bay, and their genotypes shift from the lower to the upper bay. Interestingly, signature sequences of N4-like phages were recovered only from winter month samples, when water temperatures were below 4°C. An analysis of existing metagenomic libraries from various aquatic environments supports the hypothesis that N4-like phages are most prolific in colder waters. In particular, a high number of N4-like phages were detected in Organic Lake, Antarctica, a cold and hypersaline system. The prevalence of N4-like phages in the cold biosphere suggests these viruses possess yet-to-be-determined mechanisms that facilitate lytic infections under cold conditions. Copyright © 2015, American Society for Microbiology. All Rights Reserved.

  1. Radiation research contracts: Distribution of fission products in the biosphere

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Schoenfeld, T [Vienna University, First Chemical Institute, Vienna (Austria)

    1959-04-15

    Protection against ionizing radiation given off in nuclear transformations is one of the foremost safety problems in all atomic energy operations. While every effort is being made to prevent reactors, processing plants and all other installations from releasing radioactive materials into the biosphere - air, water and earth - under any foreseeable conditions, small amounts of it are actually released into man's living space. Undoubtedly, this will continue to be so, at least for the time being. For example, low activity liquid wastes from some chemical processing plants are decontaminated in special processes, but traces of fission products remain in the liquids finally discharged on the ground or to nearby waterways. In some installations low and medium activity liquid wastes are even released on the ground or into swamps without prior decontamination. It is also to be expected that in accidents larger amounts of fission products may occasionally be released. To make the routine release of small amounts of fission products safe and to be able to estimate the possible effect of larger releases in accidents, a considerable amount of information is required

  2. Biosphere in 3.5 Ga submarine hydrothermal system

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ueno, Yuichiro [Tokyo Univ. (Japan). Dept. of Earth Science and Astronomy

    2003-04-01

    Abundant organic matter (kerogen) was identified in {approx}3.5 Ga hydrothermal silica dikes from the North Pole area in the Pilbara craton, Western Australia. The silica dikes developed in the uppermost 1000 m of the ancient oceanic crust. Thus, they would have been deposited in the 3.5 Ga sub-seafloor hydrothermal system. The carbon and nitrogen isotopic compositions of the kerogen were analyzed in this study. Their highly {sup 13}C-depleted isotopic compositions ({delta}{sup 13}C = -38 to -33 per mille) strongly suggest that they are originally derived from biologically produced organic matter. The remarkable similarity of the {delta}{sup 13}C values between the kerogen and modern hydrothermal vent organisms may suggest that the kerogen was derived from chemoautotrophic organisms. This idea is also consistent with their nitrogen isotopic compositions ({delta}{sup 15}N = -4 to +4 per mille). The silica dikes consist mainly of fine-grained silica with minor pyrite and sphalerite. These mineral assemblages indicate that the silica dike was deposited from relatively low-temperature (probably less than 150degC) reducing hydrothermal fluid. Thus, anaerobic thermophilic/hyperthermophilic organisms could have survived in the hydrothermal fluid, which formed the silica dikes. Therefore, it is plausible that a chemoautotrophic-based biosphere (possibly methanogenesis) probably existed in the Early Archean sub-seafloor hydrothermal system. (author)

  3. Active processes on the Sun and the biosphere

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Vladimirskii, B M [AN SSSR, Crimea. Krymskaya Astrofizicheskaya Observatoriya

    1977-02-01

    The possible effect of the solar activity on the biosphere of the Earth is analyzed. Biological effects of the background electromagnetic field (BEMF) detected on the surface of the Earth within the range of low and ultralow frequencies are discussed. A significant effect of BEMF with a frequency of several Hz upon the cardiovascular system is discovered. The nervous system is sensitive to the BEMF effect within a wide frequency range. It is assumed that physiological variations in biological objects is a consequence of the solar activity (mighty chromospheral flares). Small amplitude infrasomic oscillations which are little known and which are generated in the development of an aurora as well as the increase of the radon (/sup 222/Rn) concentration in the atmosphere during geomagnetic disturbances are closely connected with the solar activity as well. The study of daily rhythems shows that they can be compulsorily synchronized by changing environmental factors. It is found out that biological rhythems are closely connected with cycles of the solar and geomagnetic activity. Investigations of such interrelations is of great theoretical and practical importance for biology and medicine.

  4. Risk of severe climate change impact on the terrestrial biosphere

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Heyder, Ursula; Schaphoff, Sibyll; Gerten, Dieter; Lucht, Wolfgang, E-mail: Ursula.Heyder@pik-potsdam.de, E-mail: Sibyll.Schaphoff@pik-potsdam.de [Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research, Telegraphenberg A62, 14473 Potsdam (Germany)

    2011-07-15

    The functioning of many ecosystems and their associated resilience could become severely compromised by climate change over the 21st century. We present a global risk analysis of terrestrial ecosystem changes based on an aggregate metric of joint changes in macroscopic ecosystem features including vegetation structure as well as carbon and water fluxes and stores. We apply this metric to global ecosystem simulations with a dynamic global vegetation model (LPJmL) under 58 WCRP CMIP3 climate change projections. Given the current knowledge of ecosystem processes and projected climate change patterns, we find that severe ecosystem changes cannot be excluded on any continent. They are likely to occur (in > 90% of the climate projections) in the boreal-temperate ecotone where heat and drought stress might lead to large-scale forest die-back, along boreal and mountainous tree lines where the temperature limitation will be alleviated, and in water-limited ecosystems where elevated atmospheric CO{sub 2} concentration will lead to increased water use efficiency of photosynthesis. Considerable ecosystem changes can be expected above 3 K local temperature change in cold and tropical climates and above 4 K in the temperate zone. Sensitivity to temperature change increases with decreasing precipitation in tropical and temperate ecosystems. In summary, there is a risk of substantial restructuring of the global land biosphere on current trajectories of climate change.

  5. Cactus Nurseries and Conservation in a Biosphere Reserve in Mexico

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    María T. Pulido

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available Documenting how socio-ecosystem conservation knowledge and practice arise and are modified are issues of ethnobiological interest. In the Barranca de Metztitlán Biosphere Reserve (RBBM, plant nurseries, some of which were created as Environmental Management Units (UMAs, have been established to grow and conserve cacti. This paper describes these nurseries, their role in cactus conservation, and the benefits and limitations for the people managing them. The nurseries have helped decrease illegal traffic in cacti and have enabled ex situ conservation of 22 cacti species. Cactus management has changed from extraction to cultivation, as a result of the knowledge and actions of multiple actors. The main limitation is marketing, a recurring problem for non-timber forest products (NTFP. Greater coordination among stakeholders is recommended, such as involvement by non-governmental organizations to improve their probability of success, as well as learning from the experience of other cactus UMAs. Improving the market for cacti is an issue that needs an immediate solution; otherwise conservation efforts could relapse.

  6. General radioactive contamination of the biosphere in the Netherlands

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1980-01-01

    The Coordinating Committee for the Monitoring of Radioactive and Xenobiotic Substances (C.C.R.X.) reports the results of the radioactivity measurements in 1979. These are divided into measurements for the National Measuring Programme and Additional Measurements. The former include the analyses considered essential for an efficacious control of the radioactivity of the biosphere and are performed in air, soil, surface water, milk and in deposition on the surface of the earth. Samples of milk and grass from the surroundings of nuclear reactors have also been analysed. Additional measurements comprises orientating research for specific radionuclides which may be present in some samples, and other investigations which may procure useful information. Results of determinations of radionuclides in some fishery-products from the Dutch waters are given in view of the potential which some marine organisms have to concentrate fission products and especially activated corrosion products from nuclear installations. After a discussion of the results for the National Measuring Programme, a calculation is given of the total artificial radioactivity in the average Dutch diet in 1979 and of the total mean annual radiation dose the Dutch population received as a result of the presence of artificial radionuclides. Different methods studied to calculate the bone dose due to Sr-90 in the diet are outlined as an appendix. (Auth.)

  7. Risk of severe climate change impact on the terrestrial biosphere

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Heyder, Ursula; Schaphoff, Sibyll; Gerten, Dieter; Lucht, Wolfgang

    2011-01-01

    The functioning of many ecosystems and their associated resilience could become severely compromised by climate change over the 21st century. We present a global risk analysis of terrestrial ecosystem changes based on an aggregate metric of joint changes in macroscopic ecosystem features including vegetation structure as well as carbon and water fluxes and stores. We apply this metric to global ecosystem simulations with a dynamic global vegetation model (LPJmL) under 58 WCRP CMIP3 climate change projections. Given the current knowledge of ecosystem processes and projected climate change patterns, we find that severe ecosystem changes cannot be excluded on any continent. They are likely to occur (in > 90% of the climate projections) in the boreal-temperate ecotone where heat and drought stress might lead to large-scale forest die-back, along boreal and mountainous tree lines where the temperature limitation will be alleviated, and in water-limited ecosystems where elevated atmospheric CO 2 concentration will lead to increased water use efficiency of photosynthesis. Considerable ecosystem changes can be expected above 3 K local temperature change in cold and tropical climates and above 4 K in the temperate zone. Sensitivity to temperature change increases with decreasing precipitation in tropical and temperate ecosystems. In summary, there is a risk of substantial restructuring of the global land biosphere on current trajectories of climate change.

  8. Solar energy and ecosystem. ; Japanized biosphere simulator (restructing of artificial ecosystem originating in the biosphere). Taiyo energy to ecosystem. ; Nipponban biosphere simulator (biosphere ni manabu jinkoteki ecosystem no kochiku)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Azuma, K. (Hazama Gumi, Ltd., Tokyo (Japan))

    1992-11-30

    The present report introduces Japanized biosphere (BS) simulator which was structured in order for the BS research committee composed of people of experience or academic standing and related industrials to elucidate the CO2 circulation behavior in the biological sphere of temperate zone. Its principal structural factors were ocean, grassland and broad-leaved tree forest, while river and lake were assumed to be those for the water circulation. Animals and plants which were necessary for the ecological system were taken as biological elements, while the installed system technology facilities covered the air, water, lighting, monitoring and energy. Those facilities are 40000m[sup 2], 60m and 2400000m[sup 3] in total area, height and volume, respectively on the site expanding to a scale of 20ha. Apart, land and ocean were arranged on the ground expanding to 2000000m[sup 2]. The quantification of different circulating substances is being studied, while the material balance is controlled so as to totally result in zero. Nobody can enter the facilities because of simplification in experimental model. The meteorological condition is monitored. The structuring was done by taking the biological sphere of BS-II Project, USA as an object. As the basic survey has been generally completed, an investigation team is on the point of being organized. 2 figs., 1 tab.

  9. Biosphere modelling for a HLW repository - scenario and parameter variations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Grogan, H.

    1985-03-01

    In Switzerland high-level radioactive wastes have been considered for disposal in deep-lying crystalline formations. The individual doses to man resulting from radionuclides entering the biosphere via groundwater transport are calculated. The main recipient area modelled, which constitutes the base case, is a broad gravel terrace sited along the south bank of the river Rhine. An alternative recipient region, a small valley with a well, is also modelled. A number of parameter variations are performed in order to ascertain their impact on the doses. Finally two scenario changes are modelled somewhat simplistically, these consider different prevailing climates, namely tundra and a warmer climate than present. In the base case negligibly low doses to man in the long term, resulting from the existence of a HLW repository have been calculated. Cs-135 results in the largest dose (8.4E-7 mrem/y at 6.1E+6 y) while Np-237 gives the largest dose from the actinides (3.6E-8 mrem/y). The response of the model to parameter variations cannot be easily predicted due to non-linear coupling of many of the parameters. However, the calculated doses were negligibly low in all cases as were those resulting from the two scenario variations. (author)

  10. Migration to the Maya Biosphere Reserve, Guatemala: Why place matters.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carr, David L

    2008-01-01

    Virtually all migration research examines international migration or urbanization. Yet understudied rural migrants are of critical concern for environmental conservation and rural sustainable development. Despite the fact that a relatively small number of all migrants settle remote rural frontiers, these are the agents responsible for perhaps most of the tropical deforestation on the planet. Further, rural migrants are among the most destitute people worldwide in terms of economic and human development. While a host of research has investigated deforestation resulting from frontier migration, and a modest literature has emerged on frontier development, this article explores the necessary antecedent to tropical deforestation and poverty along agricultural frontiers: out-migration from origin areas. The data come from a 2000 survey with community leaders and key informants in 16 municipios of migrant origin to the Maya Biosphere Reserve (MBR), Petén, Guatemala. A common denominator among communities of migration origin to the Petén frontier was unequal resource access, usually land. Nevertheless, the factors driving resource scarcity were widely variable. Land degradation, land consolidation, and population growth prevailed in some communities but not in others. Despite similar exposure to community and regional level push factors, most people in the sampled communities did not out-migrate, suggesting that any one or combination of factors is not necessarily sufficient for out-migration.

  11. Frozen soil parameterization in a distributed biosphere hydrological model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    L. Wang

    2010-03-01

    Full Text Available In this study, a frozen soil parameterization has been modified and incorporated into a distributed biosphere hydrological model (WEB-DHM. The WEB-DHM with the frozen scheme was then rigorously evaluated in a small cold area, the Binngou watershed, against the in-situ observations from the WATER (Watershed Allied Telemetry Experimental Research. First, by using the original WEB-DHM without the frozen scheme, the land surface parameters and two van Genuchten parameters were optimized using the observed surface radiation fluxes and the soil moistures at upper layers (5, 10 and 20 cm depths at the DY station in July. Second, by using the WEB-DHM with the frozen scheme, two frozen soil parameters were calibrated using the observed soil temperature at 5 cm depth at the DY station from 21 November 2007 to 20 April 2008; while the other soil hydraulic parameters were optimized by the calibration of the discharges at the basin outlet in July and August that covers the annual largest flood peak in 2008. With these calibrated parameters, the WEB-DHM with the frozen scheme was then used for a yearlong validation from 21 November 2007 to 20 November 2008. Results showed that the WEB-DHM with the frozen scheme has given much better performance than the WEB-DHM without the frozen scheme, in the simulations of soil moisture profile at the cold regions catchment and the discharges at the basin outlet in the yearlong simulation.

  12. Radiation research contracts: Distribution of fission products in the biosphere

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Schoenfeld, T.

    1959-01-01

    Protection against ionizing radiation given off in nuclear transformations is one of the foremost safety problems in all atomic energy operations. While every effort is being made to prevent reactors, processing plants and all other installations from releasing radioactive materials into the biosphere - air, water and earth - under any foreseeable conditions, small amounts of it are actually released into man's living space. Undoubtedly, this will continue to be so, at least for the time being. For example, low activity liquid wastes from some chemical processing plants are decontaminated in special processes, but traces of fission products remain in the liquids finally discharged on the ground or to nearby waterways. In some installations low and medium activity liquid wastes are even released on the ground or into swamps without prior decontamination. It is also to be expected that in accidents larger amounts of fission products may occasionally be released. To make the routine release of small amounts of fission products safe and to be able to estimate the possible effect of larger releases in accidents, a considerable amount of information is required

  13. Decapod larvae dynamics on Berlengas Biosphere Reserve (UNESCO - Portugal

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lénia Da Fonseca Alexandre Rato

    2014-05-01

    Total decapoda abundance ranged from 0,06 ind.m-3 in May 2011 to 64,28ind.m-3 in August 2012, and significantly different between summer/winter and winter/spring months (P(perm≤0,05. The data obtained on this study revealed that Infraorders Brachyura, Anomura and Caridea are the most common. All three are significantly different between months (P(perm≤0,05 but not between sampling stations (P(perm>0,05. Brachyuran abundance was significantly affected by the Oceanograhic Conditions (P(perm≤0,05. Abundances were higher in spring and summer months, when Chlorophyl a values (mg.m-3, Temperature (ºC and Salinity (ppt were also higher. Decapoda community is directly affected by the surrounding environmental conditions in Berlengas Biosphere Reserve and abundance might also be related with specific larvae release throughout the year. Each sampling station was considered a replica from the study area. The ecological importance of Berlengas was also verified by the presence of non-frequent larvae of Achelata and Stomatopoda.

  14. Resistance of Terrestrial Microbial Communities to Impack of Physical Conditinos of Subsurface Layers of Martian Regolith

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheptsov, V. S.; Vorobyova, E. A.

    2017-05-01

    Currently, astrobiology is focused on Mars as one of the most perspective objects in the Solar System to search for microbial life. It was assumed that the putative biosphere of Mars could be cryopreserved and had been stored for billions of years in anabiotic state like microbial communities of Arctic and Antarctic permafrost deposits have been preserved till now for millions of years. In this case microbial cells should be not able to repair the damages or these processes have to be significantly depressed, and the main factor causing cell's death should be ionizing radiation. In a series of experiments we simulated the effects of combination of physical factors known as characteristics of the Martian regolith (and close to the space environment) on the natural microbial communities inhabiting xerophytic harsh habitats with extreme temperature conditions: polar permafrost and desert soils. The aim of the study was to examine the cumulative effect of factors (gamma radiation, low temperature, low pressure) to assess the possibility of metabolic reactions, and to find limits of the viability of natural microbial communities after exposure to the given conditions. It was found that microbial biomarkers could be reliably detected in soil samples after radiation dose accumulation up to 1 MGy (not further investigated) in combination with exposure to low temperature and low pressure. Resistance to extremely high doses of radiation in simulated conditions proves that if there was an Earth-like biosphere on the early Mars microorganisms could survive in the surface or subsurface layers of the Martian regolith for more than tens of millions of years after climate change. The study gives also some new grounds for the approval of transfer of viable microorganisms in space.

  15. Methodology for the biosphere evaluation during the RRAA management. Application for the Mediterranean system

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pinedo, P.; Simon, I.; Aguero, A.

    1998-01-01

    For several years CIEMAT has been developing for ENRESA knowledge and tools to support the modelling of the migration and accumulation of radionuclides within the biosphere once those radionuclides are released or reach one or more parts of the biosphere (atmosphere, water impacts arising from the resulting distribution of radionuclides in the biosphere. In 1996, a Methodology to analyse the biosphere in the context of high level waste repositories was proposed to ENRESA, where the issues mentioned above were considered and treated. The level of development of the different aspects proposed within the Methodology was quite heterogeneous and, while aspects of radionuclide transport modelling were already well developed in theoretical and practical terms, other aspects like the procedure for conceptual model development using the RES matrix and the description of biosphere systems representatives of the long term needed further developments. These own methodological developments have been developed in parallel with similar international developments within which there were and are an active participation, the BIOMOVS II international Project, finalized in 1996 and where it was developed the so called Reference Biosphere Methodology and, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Programme on Biosphere Modelling and Assessment (BIOMASS), that is developed at present in collaboration with several national organizations, ENRESA and CIEMAT among them. The work described here takes account of these international developments. The overall purpose of this work is to apply the Methodology, to the last performance assessment (PA) exercise made by ENRESA, using form it the general and particular information about the assessment context, the source term, and the geo-biosphere interface data. (Author) 6 refs

  16. Biosphere of the earth as a life-support system (LSS) for mankind

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pechurkin, Nickolay

    As a component of biosphere the mankind became the most powerful and active link recently. Exponential growth of human population number and of some technological indicators of its development becomes menacing for steady (stationary or close-to-stationary) functioning of biosphere as single whole. Anyway, we should be able to estimate quantitatively limits of pos-sible anthropogenic impact on functional parameters of biosphere. Considering biosphere as a natural LSS, we can receive the helpful information for working out and creation of artificial LSS of various types. Big biotic cycle induced with flows of a solar energy, is a basis of func-tioning of biosphere and its basic cells -ecosystems. In comparison with the majority natural ecosystems, the biosphere has very high factor of closure of substance circulation, especially limiting biogenic elements: nitrogen and phosphorus. Voluntarily or not, the mankind interferes in big biotic cycle and modifies it. For example, extracting mineral fertilizers for cultivation of agricultural crops, we return in circulation lost before substances, type nitric, potassic, phos-phoric salts. Burning fossils of organic carbon (oil, gas, coal), we raise concentration of carbon dioxide in atmosphere. The melting of a permafrost connected with activity of mankind, is capable to lead to excretion of other greenhouse gases, in particular, methane. It's possible to summarize briefly the main functional properties of the biosphere: Integrity, Closure, Substance cycling, Steady state, Energy dependence. These properties of the biosphere, as a LSS, ensure potentially everlasting life under the conditions of a limited quantity of substrate suitable for the life on the planet. But the selfish mankind is able to destroy harmonic adjustment of this unique natural mechanism

  17. Use of the method of biosphere compatibility for the assessment of environmental protection methods

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vorobyov, Sergey

    2018-01-01

    The article is devoted to the question of using the indicator of biosphere compatibility for assessing the effectiveness of environmental protection methods. The indicator of biosphere compatibility was proposed by the vice-president of RAASN (Russian Academy of Architecture and Building Sciences), Doctor of Technical Sciences, Professor V.I. Ilyichev. This indicator is allows not only qualitatively but also quantitatively to assess the degree of development of urban urban areas, from the standpoint of preserving the biosphere in urban ecosystems while realizing the city’s main functions. The integral indicator of biosphere compatibility is allows us to assess not only the current ecological situation in the territory under consideration, but also to plan the forecast of its changes for building the new construction projects, or for reconstructing existing ones. The indicator of biosphere compatibility, which is a mathematical expression of the tripartite balance (technosphere, biosphere and population of this area), is allows us to quantify the degree of effectiveness of different method of protecting the environment for choose the most effective for these conditions.

  18. Biosphere 2: a prototype project for a permanent and evolving life system for Mars base.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nelson, M; Allen, J P; Dempster, W F

    1992-01-01

    As part of the ground-based preparation for creating long-term life systems needed for space habitation and settlement, Space Biospheres Ventures (SBV) is undertaking the Biosphere 2 project near Oracle, Arizona. Biosphere 2, currently under construction, is scheduled to commence its operations in 1991 with a two-year closure period with a crew of eight people. Biosphere 2 is a facility which will be essentialy materially-closed to exchange with the outside environment. It is open to information and energy flow. Biosphere 2 is designed to achieve a complex life-support system by the integration of seven areas or "biomes"--rainforest, savannah, desert, marsh, ocean, intensive agriculture and human habitat. Unique bioregenerative technologies, such as soil bed reactors for air purification, aquatic waste processing systems, real-time analytic systems and complex computer monitoring and control systems are being developed for the Biosphere 2 project. Its operation should afford valuable insight into the functioning of complex life systems necessary for long-term habitation in space. It will serve as an experimental ground-based prototype and testbed for the stable, permanent life systems needed for human exploration of Mars.

  19. Application of Biosphere Compatibility Indicator for Assessment of the Effectiveness of Environmental Protection Methods

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bakaeva, N. V.; Vorobyov, S. A.; Chernyaeva, I. V.

    2017-11-01

    The article is devoted to the issue of using the biosphere compatibility indicator to assess the effectiveness of environmental protection methods. The indicator biosphere compatibility was proposed by the vice-president of RAASN (Russian Academy of Architecture and Building Sciences), Doctor of Technical Sciences, Professor V.I. Ilyichev. This indicator allows one to assess not only qualitatively but also quantitatively the degree of urban areas development from the standpoint of preserving the biosphere in urban ecosystems while performing the city’s main functions. The integral biosphere compatibility indicator allows us to assess not only the current ecological situation in the territory under consideration but also to plan the forecast of its changes for the new construction projects implementation or for the reconstruction of the existing ones. The biosphere compatibility indicator, which is a mathematical expression of the tripartite balance (technosphere, biosphere and population of this area), allows us to quantify the effectiveness degree of different methods for environment protection to choose the most effective one under these conditions.

  20. Conch, Cooperatives, and Conflict: Conservation and Resistance in the Banco Chinchorro Biosphere Reserve

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David M Hoffman

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available In theory, biosphere reserves link biodiversity conservation with development, primarily through sustainable resource utilisation, and alternative, conservation-compatible economies in the buffer and transition zones outside the core area. Successful management should reduce pressure on natural resources within its core area as well as enable local communities to participate in the management of buffer zone resources in a sustainable manner. The Banco Chinchorro Biosphere Reserve was declared in 1996 to protect coral reefs and marine biodiversity, while also enabling fishing cooperatives to maintain their livelihoods based upon the sustainable extraction of lobster, conch, and scalefish. In 2004, eight years after the Reserve′s declaration, Mexican authorities struggled to control marine resource use in the reserve, especially the extraction of queen conch (Strombus gigas. This article provides an overview of the long struggle to conserve queen conch populations in the area. Particular attention is paid to describing the various forms of resistance fishermen employed to counter the increasing regulation and vigilance that accompanied the creation of the Banco Chinchorro Biosphere Reserve. This case chronicles the resistance to regulation and interpersonal violence that erupts when entrenched attitudes and practices are confronted with increasing surveillance. Thus, what was observed in the Banco Chinchorro Biosphere Reserve parallels other research that depicts the forms of resistance to conservation that local people enact when confronted with conservation interventions. Finally, the plight of queen conch in the Banco Chinchorro Biosphere Reserve clearly reflects the conflicts and difficulties found across Mexico in the implementation of the biosphere reserve model.