The Ocean's Tiny Chemists : Image

Marine microorganisms are the chemists of the ocean, continually cycling carbon and other chemicals via the routine biochemical reactions they use to live and grow. MIT/WHOI graduate student Kim Popendorf conducts a series of experiments to begin to tease apart the multitude of microbes in the ocean and determine which are performing which chemical reactions. The first step is to collect seawater containing microbes with an instrument known as a CTD. (Photo by Ruifeng Zhang, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution)