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76°F (24.4°C)
Latitude: 23 deg 52.69’S
Longitude: 69 deg 35.85’E
Wind Direction: Light Airs
Wind Speed: 0-4 Knots
Sea State 1-2
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john edmond

The recently discovered Central Indian Ridge hydrothermal vent site is named for Geochemist John Edmond.

Sampling a Chimney

what's to eat today?
Daily Update: The Edmond Site
April 22, 2001
By Amy Nevala

Since all newly discovered places deserve an honorable title, we have named the Central Indian Ridge hydrothermal vent site we discovered for geochemist John Marmion Edmond, one of the first scientists to identify and explore hydrothermal vents on the globe-encircling chain of underwater mountains known as the mid-ocean ridge.

The 1977 discovery near the Galapagos Island pioneered hydrothermal vent expeditions in the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans and now, the Indian Ocean.

Central Indian Ridge expedition member Bob Collier, one of John’s former graduate students, describes his professor as “a fiery-haired man with matching energy.” John moved from Scotland to the United States in the late 1960’s to study at Scripps Institution of Oceanography before becoming a professor at Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

John was 57 years old when he died earlier this month in Massachusetts.

Imaginative and intelligent, the winner of several geochemistry awards and the father of two sons, “he approached everything in life with a real passion. I really looked up to him,” said Bob, who began his chemistry studies under John’s guidance in 1971 as a freshman at MIT.

Bob was with John that February 1977 evening when John surfaced in Alvin after his discovery dive at the hydrothermal vent site, located between the Galapagos Islands and Ecuador.

“He was pumped, so excited,” said Bob. John’s geochemical expertise and enthusiasm for ocean chemistry also influenced chemist Karen Von Damm, who is studying the Central Indian Ridge site located near 23°52’S.

One of her favorite memories of John is eating sandwiches and cookies while seated in Alvin at a black smoker chimney on the East Pacific Rise, just before they were to begin their research. “We had this smoker booming outside the window and we were inside eating peanut butter sandwiches like we were at a Victorian picnic,” said Karen.

Scientists discovered the Edmond site on Friday night. We spent the weekend exploring this remarkable environment, mapping the seafloor around the vents, studying the gushing black smoker chimneys and identifying vent organisms.

The Edmond site is only the second active hydrothermal vent site explored on the Central Indian Ridge.

“It just seemed natural,” Bob said “to name this place for John.”





















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