Why are we here?

The deep oceans represent approximately 90% of the habitable area for life on Earth but the biodiversity and ecology of these ecosystems are poorly studied and understood.

Between 7 November and 21 December, we are going to explore five seamounts of the southwest Indian Ridge.
The main focus of this expedition is to investigate benthic assemblages (communitiy of organisms which live on, in or near the seabed) on these seamounts, whereas the first cruise in late 2009 focused on the pelagic ecosystems (community of organisms which live in the water column not close to the bottom). Four days of ship time has been added to further investigate hydrothermal vents in the area.