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Movement of Ocean Water

rogue wave

a giant wave formed from the intersection of 3 or more wave crests


distance from one wave crest to the next, or from one wave trough to the next


the highest part of a wave


the lowest part of a wave

surface currents

Streamlike movements of water on or near the surface. Formed by global winds, and influence by the Coriolis effect and continental deflection.

deep currents

Streamlike movements of water far below the surface. Formed when water at the surface increases in density from higher salinity or lower temperatures, and sinks.


a measure of the amount of dissolved salts in a given amount of liquid

wave height, or amplitude

the vertical distance from the crest to the trough of a wave

wave period

the time it takes one full wave, one wave length, to pass a fixed position

deep-water waves

Waves that occur in water that is deeper than half their wavelength

longshore currents

Currents that runs parallel to the shoreline; caused by waves colliding with the shore at an angle.


A wave formed from a large volume of sea water being displaced up or down, from an earthquake, landslide, meteor impact, or volcanic eruption.

storm surge

a local rise in sea level near the shore that is caused by strong winds from a storm, such as those from a hurricane

tidal range

Is the difference in height between a high tide and the next low tide.

tidal bore

A body of water that rushes up a narrow bay, estuary, or river channel during the rise of high tide.

spring tide

A tide that occurs when the sun, Earth, and moon are aligned, and is characterized by the maximum tidal range.

neap tide

A tide that occurs when the sun, Earth, and moon form a right angle, and is characterized by minimal tidal range.

Bay of Fundy

A body of water in Canada with the greatest tidal range on Earth.

Hilo, Hawaii

City that was damaged from a tsunami caused by an earthquake in Chile in 1960

Lituya Bay

The site of the biggest tsunami, July 10 ,1958, measuring 524 m.


A wall built out into the ocean, perpendicular to the shore, designed to trap sand moving along the shore.


a device that uses magnetism to convert energy of motion into electrical energy


large wheel that rotates when pushed by water, wind, or steam, and provides energy to a generator

Rance River, France

site of the largest tidal power plant in the world

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