Tag Archives: extremophiles


Tardigrades are the toughest animals that we have yet discovered, not due to their physical strength, but rather their incredible ability to survive. People praise cockroaches for their ability to survive levels of radiation that would be lethal to humans, but the real heroes are microscopic “water bears” called tardigrades. Tardigrades are extremophiles, or micro-organisms … Continue reading Tardigrades Continue reading

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Extremophiles 101

Extremophiles produce some of the color at the Grand Prismatic Spring Wikipedia defines “an extremophile as an organism that thrives in physically or geochemically extreme conditions that are detrimental to most life on Earth.” This means that if extremophiles were your classmates, they will totally be the cool kids in the class. Not only are … Continue reading Extremophiles 101 Continue reading

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Resilient Life on Earth Increases Possibility of Extraterrestrial Life

Believe it or not, there are organisms on Earth that can survive unimaginable conditions! These beings are called extremophiles, and they’re nothing short of amazing. One example is the tardigrade, which can live in the most extreme heat, cold, dehydration and radiation. The simple fact that these organisms exist give us reason to believe that … Continue reading Resilient Life on Earth Increases Possibility of Extraterrestrial Life Continue reading

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Are Extremophiles Our Roommates?

Extremophiles are microorganisms that can survive in extreme conditions, such as high temperatures or great acidity. A recent study has found extremophiles in a location much more familiar to us, and it’s actually in the homes of humans. The study took samples from water heaters across all 50 states. Around 50% of the tested samples … Continue reading Are Extremophiles Our Roommates? Continue reading

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The Case for Tardigrades

I can’t remember if it was Cosmos or Planet Earth, but it was narrated by Neil DeGrasse Tyson. My roommate and I were watching it before bed, and it was fascinating. Almost the entire episode was dedicated to tardigrades, more colloquially known as water bears. These microscopic animals are uncannily resilient. Like, scarily so. According […] Continue reading

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A Whole New World!

Because the caves, mines, and crevasses on Earth are filled with extremophiles, NASA uses those lifeforms as a guide to its exploration of the universe. The hidden parts of the planet have to make their own way of survival. Surface life has photosynthesis, but subsurface only a tiny fraction of that energy trickles down so … Continue reading A Whole New World! Continue reading

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Enter The Hypolith

Hypoliths are photosynthetic bacteria that inhabit the desert. Despite the Namib desert in Namibia being one of the most extreme environments on Earth, hypoliths thrive under quartz rock under these harsh conditions. This desert can go years without rain and it is subject to constant solar radiation and scorching heat. With very little water and … Continue reading “Enter The Hypolith” Continue reading

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Survival in Space

Scientists and knowledge seekers alike have always wondered about the source, composition, and evolution of both life on Earth and beyond. This field of study is known today as astrobiology, and scientists in this field are currently trying to answer the following question: could life exist beyond Earth? In solving this puzzle, the European Space … Continue reading Survival in Space Continue reading

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Unusual Extremophiles

We’ve discussed the various types of extremophiles and brainstormed some potential habitats for these microbes, but there are some examples that I think are worth hearing. Snottites are these cave-dwelling microbes that ingest volcanic sulfur and excrete acidic compounds. Their name comes from the fact that colonies of snottites actually appear slimy and almost snot-like. The … Continue reading Unusual Extremophiles Continue reading

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Incredibly species of microorganism and microbes have tested the limits of evolutionary theory as they have been discovered to survive an incredible range of extreme conditions.  These microbes, called extremophiles can survive in various extremes: incredibly high temperatures, near-vacuum condition of space, and in the freezing cold.  In fact, scientists have discovered microbes within the … Continue reading Extremophiles Continue reading

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