This movie requires Flash Player 8. Download Flash Player 8

 
© 2014ApologeticsPress
(800) 234-8558
syndication   |  About AP   |  Sign up for E-mail Newsletter    |    Privacy Policy    |    Contact Us
ApologeticsPress.org
Issue Features
  
View this issue online as it looks in print
Discovery Magazine 5/1/2000


Fountains of the Deep

What looked like black smoke billowed from a crack in the ocean floor. Alvin, a tiny research submarine, and its captain, Jack Corliss, steered in for a closer look. As the submarine drew closer, Corliss could see that he had found just what he was looking for—a hydrothermal vent.

Hydrothermal vents are cracks in the ocean floor that spew forth hot water, poison gases, and metal oxides. The poison gases and metal oxides make the water look like black smoke billowing from the ocean floor. For this reason, scientists often call these vents "black smokers."

The conditions around "black smokers" are terribly dangerous and not suited for most living creatures. The water that pours from these vents gets as hot as 800 degrees Fahrenheit. Most kitchen ovens don’t get that hot. Not only is the water scorching hot, but it contains toxic oxides and gases that can kill almost any living creature.

Since many of these vents are at tremendous depths in the ocean, the water pressure alone makes it virtually impossible to maintain life in such surroundings. To top it all off, many of them are so far under the ocean that the Sun’s rays never reach them, making the vent environment extremely dark.

The terrible conditions surrounding hydrothermal vents make them the last place we would expect to find life. But that is exactly what we have found! Over 300 species of living creatures never before seen by humans thrive in these harsh conditions. Two examples of these wacky creatures are the eight-foot-long tubeworms with no stomachs and blazing red plumes, and white shrimp with eyes on their backs instead of their heads. At the bottom of the food chain around these vents are tiny bacteria that can use chemicals to make food (chemosynthesis), instead of using light from the Sun (photosynthesis).

Some scientists claim that life on Earth may have originated around these vents because of the special food-making process of the bacteria found there. It has been proven, however, that life could not start in a place with such harsh conditions.

Although hydrothermal vents are interesting and mysterious, we know that they will never be able to tell us where life began. Only in one place—the Bible—can we find the answer to that question: "Then God saw everything that He had made, and indeed it was very good" (Genesis 1:36).



Copyright © 2000 Apologetics Press, Inc. All rights reserved.

*Please keep in mind that Discovery articles are written for 3rd-6th graders.

This document may be copied, on the condition that it will not be republished in print unless otherwise stated below, and will not be used for any commercial purpose, as long as the following stipulations are observed: (1) Apologetics Press must be designated as the original publisher; (2) the specific Apologetics Press Web site URL must be noted; (3) any references, footnotes, or endnotes that accompany the article must be included with any written reproduction of the article; (4) textual alterations of any kind are strictly forbidden; (5) Some illustrations (e.g., photographs, charts, graphics, etc.) are not the intellectual property of Apologetics Press and as such cannot be reproduced from our site without consent from the person or organization that maintains those intellectual rights; (6) serialization of written material (e.g., running an article in several parts) is permitted, as long as the whole of the material is made available, without editing, in a reasonable length of time; (7) articles, in whole or in part, may not be offered for sale or included in items offered for sale; and (8) articles may be reproduced in electronic form for posting on Web sites pending they are not edited or altered from their original written content and that credit is given to Apologetics Press, including the web location from which the articles were taken. Further, documents may not be copied without source statements (title, author, journal title), and the address of the publisher and owner of rights, as listed below.

For catalog, samples, or further information, contact:

Apologetics Press
230 Landmark Drive
Montgomery, Alabama 36117
U.S.A.
Phone (334) 272-8558

http://www.apologeticspress.org

Web Store

Explorer Series 6: Survey of Scripture

This sixth installment in the series is for parents who want their children to understand the essence and thrust of each book of the Bible so that you can get a good handle of God's Word as a whole.

Featured Audio

Listen

Click the following link to visit our Multimedia section.

Featured Audio