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Ocean Currents: Salinity and Temperature
Terms in this set (9)
The amount of dissolved salts in the ocean.
*Salinity and temperature affect the density of water
Ex: Increased salinity and decreased temperature result in more dense water
Where does the salt in the ocean come from?
The main source of these salts in seawater is chemical weathering of rocks on the continents.
*They reach the ocean through runoff
Does salinity vary around the world?
*The salinity of ocean water varies slightly around the world
*In general, when the amount of water in oceans changes, the salinity changes.
Examples of variations in salinity across the world:
*Anything that increases the amount of water will decrease salinity (makes the water more diluted). Hurricanes and storms can cause this
*Anything that decreases the amount of water will increase salinity. This can be achieved during evaporation
Temperature and density:
Just like salinity, the temperature of the ocean varies-
*Areas at lower latitudes (closer to the equator) receive more direct, and intense sunlight and are therefore warmer.
*Areas at higher latitudes (near the poles) will have less sunlight and therefore be cooler.
An area of rapid change in temperature
*It is a vertical barrier between types of marine life
*Water is the warmest because it is heated by the sun
*Water is mixed by waves, currents, and tides
*Temperature is fairly uniform
*Only about 2% of the ocean
*Temperature decreases quickly with depth
*Thermocline is here
*About 18% of the ocean water
*Sunlight never reaches this zone
*Temperatures are very cold (only a few degrees above freezing)
*80% of the ocean water
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