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Richard A. Lutz

Richard A. Lutz

Professor
Marine ecology, biology of deep-sea hydrothermal vents

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Education: Ph.D., University of Maine
Postdoctoral Fellow - Yale University

Research Interests:

Dr. Richard A. Lutz is one of the foremost authorities in the world on the ecology of deep-sea hydrothermal vents. Since the first biological expedition to these unique ecosystems in 1979, Dr. Lutz has spent countless hours on the bottom exploring thermal vents throughout the world's oceans in a variety of deep-diving submersibles.

Photo: Dr. Lutz  and Deep-submergence Vehicle, Alvin.In April 1991, Dr. Lutz joined a number of his geological colleagues on an oceanographic expedition, during which they used the deep-submergence vehicle Alvin to dive, for the first time, into the caldera of an actively erupting volcanic ridge along the East Pacific Rise at a depth of 2500 meters. Dr. Lutz has returned to the site at approximately annual intervals to document events that have occurred since the eruption. The results of his ongoing studies at the volcanic eruption site have been featured in many scientific journals and magazines, including Science, Nature, American Scientist (cover story), and three separate issues of National Geographic. Observations made during the course of Dr. Lutz's ongoing studies in this unique "natural deep-sea laboratory" are dramatically altering our views of the rates at which many biological and geological processes are occurring on the face of the planet. Dr. Lutz was Principal Investigator on the NSF project which funded the IMAX film entitled Volcanoes of the Deep Sea and served as the film's Science Director; he recently received the 2005 Scientific Literacy Achievement Award from the New Jersey Association for Biomedical Research for his contributions to this film.

 

Research Lab:  Center for Deep-Sea Ecology and Biotechnology

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