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GEo-marine InterDisciplinary Research (RIDGE)

The deep sea was long regarded as a very homogenous environment, which was only weakly influenced by processes at its surface and where the slow changes of environmental parameters were insignificant for the organisms living there.

This old picture has changed dramatically in the XX century with the recognition of ocean floor spreading, the observations of circulation of water through fracture zones and the associated  changes in water chemistry, water fronts, gyres and large-scale eddies. Interactions of the deep sea with the surface of the oceans, with the atmosphere, and with the terrestrial environments exist and must be better understood.

The recent enhancements of both the marine intervention systems and the auxiliary sistems for sea monitoring, have stimulated the scientific community to extend the existing land-based networks of permanent observatories into ocean basins, especially at abyssal depths which have been poorly explored.
The present distribution of observatories is still constrained by the presence of the oceans and consequently it is inadequate to address important scientific issues related to many features of our planet at global scale (Earth’s interior and dynamics), and to regional investigations of active processes in Geophysics  (Tectonics of plate boundaries, Seismicity, Volcanism and degassing activity) and in environmental sciences (Oceanography, Biology, Climate change).

In particular, there is the need to deepen the knowledge of the Earth system as a whole and to investigate the suitable strategies for the limitation of natural hazards.

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