194 pages, 42 colour illustrations
Geobiology: Microbial Mats in Sandy Deposits from the Archean Era to Today describes microbially induced sedimentary structures as new group in the Classification of Primary Sedimentary Structures. Those structures rise from the interaction of benthic microorganisms with physical sediment dynamics caused by waves and currents. We can observe the formation of those features today in modern coastal settings, where the structures are much more common than stromatolites. However, fossil structures occur since the earliest Archean, and are abundant throughout Earth history. The structures constitute a significant archive for the understanding of Earth's earliest worlds, and are important biosignatures for the detection of life on other planets. Geobiology: Microbial Mats in Sandy Deposits from the Archean Era to Today is for sedimentologists, paleontologists, microbiologists, and geobiologists likewise.
"This book is therefore most welcome, also because it has been written by one of the few top researchers in this field covering both geology and biology [...] . a text book for students or a reference work for specialists. The book might serve as both [...] and it will serve well. [...] The book ends with an 8-page list of references and an 18-page (!) well thought-over index. [...] In general, the figures are well chosen. [...] Conclusion: worth to be bought [...] ."
- A. J. van Loon, Geologos, Vol. 16 (4), 2010
"Nora Noffke has produced an excellent text book covering a relatively recently developed field – the study of microbial mats in shallow water environments. [...] The book is well laid out and the text is clear and well-written [...] . Noffke has a fluid style that is a pleasure to read. [...] I recommend it to both the general reader, as a good introduction to MISS, and to the dedicated student of MISS in the geological record."
- Frances Westall, Geological Magazine, February, 2011
"Noffke's book provides a state-of-the-art perspective on an important line of geobiological research [...] . As geobiologists and astrobiologists think about how to apply and sharpen the tools afforded by MISS, we can be thankful that Nora Noffke has provided us with a detailed but accessible road map for continuing research."
- Andrew H. Knoll, Astrobiology, Vol. 11 (1), 2011
"Nora Noffke deals systematically with [...] microbially-induced sedimentary structures on Earth, both in the modern environment, and in fossil deposits of all ages. [...] Extensively referenced and laid out in a logical and methodical manner, the reader is provided with all the information they need to understand the concepts, and this is communicated in a clear and friendly way. [...] To an interested layperson, with no prior knowledge of microbiology [...] the book contains all they need to know to gain a thorough understanding."
- Leila Battison, Astrobiology Society of Britain, September, 2010
- Cyanobacteria: Taxonomic groups, physiology, photosynthesis, significance for Earth history
- Biofilms and Microbial Mats
- Microbial Interactions with Physical Sediment Dynamics in Modern Tidal Settings
- Microbially Induced sedimentary Structures
- Distribution of Microbially Induced Sedimentary Structures in the Fossil Record
- Field Trip Sites: Modern and Ancient
- Significance of Structures as Biosignatures for the Detection of Life on other Planets
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Nora Noffke is Associate Professor for Geobiology at Old Dominion University; Ocean, Earth & Atmospheric Sciences; For her research she has received the SEPM James Lee Wilson Award 2007, the GSA Fellowship 2007, and is nominated for the AAAS Fellowship 2008; Nora Noffke is Vice Chair of the GSA Division for Geobiology and Geomicrobiology, Member of the Council of GSW in Washington, and served for the NASA Astrobiology science definition team, Mars Exploration Rover.