21 terms

Currents, Waves, and Tides


Terms in this set (...)

ocean current
is the movement of ocean water that follows a regular pattern
surface current
horizontal, streamlike movement of water that occurs at or near the surface of the ocean- caused by wind
deep currents
streamlike movement of water far below the surface of the ocean- caused by difference in density (Decrease in temperature and an increase in salinity)
Global Winds
moves ocean water from east to west near the equator- caused by the unequal heating of the Earth
is the measure of amount of dissolved salts or solids in a given amount of liquid (ocean water)- the more dissolved salts or solids the denser the liquid (ocean water)
Decreasing temperature
water the temperature of ocean water decreases the water becomes more dense and sinks creating deep ocean currents
Increasing salinity through freezing
when ocean water freezes the salts are squeezed out of the ice and left behind and the water below the ice increases in salinity causing it be be more dense and it sinks as a result creating deep ocean current
Increasing salinity through evaporation
in warm climates ocean water is evaporated and leaves salts behind the water becomes more dense and sinks becoming a deep ocean current
Gulf Stream
is the largest and most powerful warm surface current in the North Atlantic Ocean, caused by strong winds
brings warm water from the Tropics to the east coast of North America and causes the climate near the coast to be warmer than the climate inland. ( current moves Northeast)
forms as wind blows across water's surface and transfers energy to the water- made of two main parts- Crest and Trough-
the daily rise and fall of Earth's waters on its coastlines-caused by the interaction of Earth, the moon, and the sun
Moon Gravity
main cause of tides on Earth
Spring Tides
forms when the sun, moon, and Earth are aligned-occurs during new and full moon- high tides are higher than normal and low tides are lower than normal- happen twice a month
Neap Tides
When the sun, Earth, and moon form a 90 degree angle. Are tides with the smallest daily range- happens during first and third quarters
High Tides
Occurs when water on the part of the Earth that is closest to the moon bulges, it also occurs on the opposite side of the Earth
Low Tide
occurs between high tides, when waters are at there lowest levels
highest point of a wave
lowest point of a wave
the distance between from crest to crest or the distance from trough to trough
Wave height
the vertical distance between the crest and trough
a giant underwater ocean wave that forms after a volcanic eruption, underwater earthquake, or landslide

Flickr Creative Commons Images

Some images used in this set are licensed under the Creative Commons through Flickr.com.
Click to see the original works with their full license.