Geobiology is the study of the co-evolution of life and the planet, merging disciplines such as paleontology, sedimentology, geomicrobiology, geochemistry, and geology. At the heart of the the field of Geobiology is how we document, understand, and interpret the record of the evolution of a living planet. This, in turn, leads to the question of how this evolution led to the diversity of metabolic processes on the planet today, as well as the role that microbial populations play in biogeochemical processes occurring on Earth's surface.
In this Gordon Research Conference, the scientific sessions are centered around nine unanswered questions within the broad remit of Geobiology, each of which are key to understanding the evolution of a living planet. Throughout this conference we will explore the limits of life at the surface of the planet, the role that microbial populations play in key processes including mineral formation, the carbon cycle, silicate weathering, what drove key changes in the redox state of Earth's surface environment, and what are the new tools that exist to explore these ideas further.
The conference will consist of nine sessions, on the topics listed below. The conference chair is currently developing their preliminary program, which will include the names of the invited speakers and discussion leaders for each of these sessions. The preliminary program will be available by July 1, 2019. Please check back for updates.
- Microbial Life in Rocks, from Ecosystems to Molecular Mechanisms
- Production of Biogeochemical Signals in Sediments and Their Preservation in Rocks
- Microbially Induced Mineralization
- Feedbacks Between Trace Metals and the Evolution of Life
- The Redox Evolution of Earth's Surface Environment
- Microbial Influences on Silicate Weathering
- Microbial Controls on the Carbon Cycle
- New and Emerging Tools in Geobiology
- New Insights into Early Life