Our Team on board of the research vessel Atlantis (Monika Bright, Sabine Gollner, Sigrid Katz, Andreas Laschober, Bettina Pflugfelder) and at the Department of Marine Biology, University of Vienna (Ingrid Kolar, Christian Rinke)

Monika Bright

Monika Bright is a professor for Marine Biology and Zoology at the University of Vienna. She is head of the Austrian team and works on the investigation of the hot vents of the Pacific since 1998.

She participated in ten oceanographic expeditions and had eleven dives with Alvin.

"Sometimes if you are not sure about something, you just have to jump off the bridge and grow your wings on the way down."




Sabine Gollner

Sabine Gollner makes her PhD thesis under the supervision of Monika Bright at the Department for Marine Biology (University of Vienna).

During this expedition she will the study the unknown animal communities at the hot vents. Sabine was on her first expedition in the Pacific in 2003, had already one dive with Alvin Now, she is very inquisitive how the environment had changed in the last years after the volcanic eruption!




Sigrid Katz

Sigrid Katz works with Monika Bright on her PhD thesis at the Department for Marine Biology (University of Vienna). It is her first cruise with the research vessel Atlantis and submersible Alvin. Sigrid really looks forward to her dive with the submersible and to the see the environment of the hot vents at close range.

”Nature does not have to strive to be meaningful. It is meaningful“ (Robert Walser)





Ingrid Kolar

Ingrid works as project staff member for Monika Bright. She is looking forward to the contact with the schools. She will be available for all questions in Vienna. Ingrid is especially interested in the diet of microorganism and their impact on an ecosystem and she is finishing her master thesis on this subject.

"Our head is round, so that the thinking can change the direction“ -Francis Picabia





Andreas Laschober

Andreas Laschober is a freelance journalist and lives in Vienna. Science is the focus of his work for print media and TV.







Bettina Pflugfelder

Bettina Pflugfelder is PhD student at the Department for Marine Biology of the University of Vienna. She studies the deep-sea giant tubeworms of the hydrothermal vents since 2002 and compares these worms regarding their cell cycle with giant tubeworms of cold seeps. Up to date she was on one oceanographic expedition to the Gulf of Mexico and had four dives with the submersible Johnson SeaLink to the cold seeps.

"The begin of all sciences is the astonishment, that the things are as they are.“ (Aristoteles)





Christian Rinke

Christian’s works mainly on symbioses, which exist in a few meters water depth. In his PhD thesis he deals with a tiny ciliate, which is used as high-speed elevator by bacteria. His great interest in animals of hot vents was raised during an expedition in the East Pacific.

Moreover he is responsible for the www.hydrothermalvent.com webpage.