Physical mechanisms extending the domain of liquid water at interfaces into the solid and vapor regions of the bulk phase diagram are crucial for the survival of life under extreme conditions such as cold and dry climates. These conditions are encountered locally in polar and desert regions on Earth and globally on other planets like Mars.
We discuss three classes of phenomena:
We describe how these mechanisms are used by a variety of organisms on Earth ranging from bacteria in permafrost to anti-freeze protein expressing arctic fishes and assess their significance for putative microbial life on Mars.
Public Lecture with two Presentations on Extraterrestrial Life
How to tackle nonlinear and disequilibrium responses in ecology and environmental research
New aspects of microbial sulfur cycling: from novel sulfate reducers to pyrite-forming microorganisms
Microbial storage compounds in soil: a neglected dimension of the carbon cycle