Astrobiology Australasia Conference 2018

The Astrobiology Australasia Meeting will be held on 25-26th June 2018 in Rotorua, New Zealand, organised by Haritina Mogosanu (New Zealand Astrobiology Network) and Professor Kathy Campbell (University of Auckland).

Talks and posters on current topics in astrobiology will be followed by a three-day field trip to the diverse and spectacular geothermal features of the central North Island’s Taupo Volcanic Zone (2 Ma-present). The TVZ is one of the most active volcanic regions on the planet, complete with its own supervolcano and high geothermal heat flux. Hot springs of varied fluid compositions will be visited, including the world renowned, Au-bearing Champagne Pool (pictured) and the colourful microbial mat-draped, fault-bounded sinter terraces of Orakei Korako, to mention only two.

New Zealand is also famous amongst astronomy buffs for its South Island dark skies and wide-open views of the Milky Way, and amongst marine scientists for its extreme offshore environments – hydrothermal vents, hydrocarbon seeps and gas hydrates. Visitors to New Zealand, both astrobiologists and non-astrobiologists, will also encounter a vibrant Māori culture, stunning natural landscapes, and multiple film shooting locations crammed into a country the size of California.

Come enjoy some friendly Kiwi hospitality in a Southern Hemisphere gem of a place to visit. Be sure to bring warm clothing in case of rain during our cooler winter months as well as your togs (aka bathing suits) for hot pool soaks!

Contributions in the general fields of astrobiology will be considered but we particularly welcome offers of presentations on the following special themes:

       Contributions from Southern Hemisphere astrobiology

       Space exploration and astronomy, including SETI

       Biosignatures of early Earth

       Modern analogues of early Earth and Martian(?) life

       Science outreach and education in astrobiology

Meeting: Monday 25th and Tuesday 26th June 2018 (with ice breaker on Sunday 24th June). Post-conference field trip: Wednesday 27th – Friday 29th June 2018.

Early bird registration open: November 2017.

For more information, or to join the expressions of interest mailing list, please email Haritina Mogosanu (haritina@astrobiology.nz). Further details including costs for registration, accommodation and field trip will be emailed to the EOI list in the coming months.