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Marine Science

Process of discovering facts, processes, & unifying principles that explain nature of oceans & their associated life forms.; Involves physical, life & earth/space science

How much of the oceans have humans seen?

Very little of the ocean; about the size of a period on a page

Who made the first recorded sea voyage?

The Egyptians

What did the Phoenicians do for marine science?

Established first trade routes through mediterranean
earliest known regular open-seafaring beyond sight of land

Greek Pytheas

Used North Star to determine how far north or south sailor is on ocean


Created first latitude/longitude system
Calculated Earth's circumference

Latitude and Longitude

Identifies specific locations on Earth's surface


equator is 0 degrees parallel


0 degrees meridian runs through Greenwich, England

Chinese ships in 1400s

Central rudder
watertight compartments


First European explorer to recognize South America as new continent


Crossed Isthmus of Panama & found Pacific Ocean


Led first expedition around world in 1519-1522

James Cook

voyages differ from other sea explores because he had science and exploration as only goals

Darwin's hypothesis

explains that coral reefs form though process of coral growth as seafloor subsides/sinks

Challenger Expedition

first expedition devoted entirely to marine science

German Meteor Expedition

Mapped Atlantic seafloor


first ship constructed specifically for marine science


Remotely operated vehicle
Small, unmanned, sub w/ propellers, video camera and umbilical to surface


Autonomous underwater vehicle
Untethered robotic devices propelled through water by self-contained power systems& controlled/piloted by onboard computer


made navigation significant;y more accurate

Theory of formation of planets

Some condensing gas revolving around sun collapsed into masses too small to become stars

Theory of moon's origin

planet-sized object struck young Earth, sending material into orbit

Theory of Formation of oceans

after earth cooled, water accumulated on surface




Must get NRG from other organisms

Theory of evolution

says modern organisms and characterisitcs arose through processes of mutation and natural selection over millions of years

Benthic Zone


Abyssal zone

Deep open ocean bottom

Pelagic zone

water portion

Intertidal zone

continental shelf

nertic zone

between low-tide mark and edge of continental shelf

oceanic zone

open ocean

photic zone


aphotic zone

no light


group of animals and plants that float in ocean currents


organisms that swim


live on or in sea bottom


subgroup of plankton


organisms that live on sea bottom


organisms that live buried or partially buried in sea bottom

cellular respiration

conversion of carbohydrate to usable NRG

Primary Produces

organisms that create NRG-rich compounds
plants, plankton (phytoplanton, zooplanton) Product carbon
most productive zone coastal temperate regions and subpolar regions have most productivity


organisms with rigid cell wall made of silica


organisms with one or two flagella


organisms with calcium carbonate shell


bacteria with chlorophyll also called cyanobacteria. produce oxygen & take up carbon dioxide

Trophic pyramid

representation of how NRG transfers from 1 level of organisms to another
lose 10% each level

primary consumers

organisms that consume primary producers

secondary consumers

organism that consumes primary consumers

polar molecule

molecules with positively and negatively charged ends
properties of water possible because polar
liquid @ room temp
surface tension
ice floats


all inorganic dissolved solids in seawater

principle of constant proportions

proportion of inorganic dissolved solids remain same relative to each other. sea salts
determines salinity by only measuring chlorinity of seawater


most abundant chemical in seawater besides hydrogen and oxygen

salinity and density

the higher the salinity the higher the density

why is carbon fundamental to life

it provides versatile foundation for diverse chemicals

with do organisms need nitrogen

formation of organic compounds such as proteins, chlorophyll and nucleic acids

why is phosphorus essential for life

it is important component of DNA and other nucleic acids

Why is silicon important for some marine life

used for shells and skeletons in some organisms

water and freezing

water becomes less dense as it freezes

Low temp and high salinity make seawater

more dense

what is the ocean stratified with

denser layers below less dense layers


boundary between layers of water with differing temps


caused by warm air rising and cool air flowing into replace it

Coriolis effect

due to earth's rotation air moves faster at equator than at all poles
also affects air and water currents
currents deflect right in northern hemisphere and deflect left in southern hemisphere

trade winds

between 0 degrees and 30 degrees latitude
blow towards equator


between 30 degrees and 60 degrees latitude
blow toward poles

geographic equator

@ 0 degrees

itcz/meteorological equator

imaginary line marking temp equilibrium between hemispheres


combination of westerlies, trade winds and coriolis effect flow in each ocean basin
5 major gyers in each major ocean basin


runs opp to adjacent current
formed by water entering a basin faster tan it exits


runs beneath adjacent current
why formed is unclear

What is the pattern of thermohaline circulation

redistributing heat through sinking of dense water, which causes deep water to ride and eventually enter surface currents

without currents the world's climates would be more


ocean wave

NRG transmission through matter
matter moves as wave passes, but returns to place of origin


time it take for same spot on 2 waves to pass single point


vertical distance from trough to crest


number of waves that pass fixed point in one second


horizontal distance between 2 identical points on two waves

waves break when

their H:L ratio exceeds 1:7 and when they reach a depth of 1.3 times wave height

Tsunamis don't destroy ships in open sea

because periods are so long that ships rise and fall very slowly when tsunami passes under them


caused primarily by moon's gravity with some effect from sun

diurnal tides

single high and low tide daily

semidiurnal tides

2 roughly equal high and low tides daily

mixed tides

2 unequal high and low tides daily

spring tides

form when sun and moon align with earth

neap tides

occur when sun and moon at right angles to earth

four major layers (center to outward)

inner core, outer core, mantle, crust


uppermost solid portion of mantle and crust

sedimentary rock

formed when accumulated organic and inorganic particles are compressed and cemented together

continental drift

one continent broke up and drifted apart


maps bottom terrain of ocean


deep ravines in seafloor

mid-ocean ridge

underwater mountain range

rift valley

runs through center of mid-ocean ridge

continental shelf

extended perimeter of each continent and associated coastal plain

continental slope

descent from the continental shelp to the ocean bottom


any piece of sub-continental land that is surrounded by water

divergent pate

spread apart

convergent continental plates

plates collide, create volcanos and mountains

convergent oceanic plates

subduction, one plate sinks beneath other, possible creation of Japan

transform fault/plate

plates slide past each other

seafloor spreading

magma pushes up from asthenosphere, emerges from rift valley

hot spots

local rising column of magma that doesn't move with plate above it
Hawaii islands


causes plates to move

Over next million years

Atlantic Ocean will expand, Pacific ocean will shrink, mediterranean sea close upa s africa moves north, east africa rift valley will have new ocean, southern california will pass san francisco and move northwest

Lithogenous sediment

originate from land


originate from organisms, most abundant with respect to total volume, voer larger area of sea floor,


result from chemical reactions within seawater


originate from outer space

sedimentes are classified by

size based on diameter of individual particle

continental shelf sedimentation is

strongly controlled by tides, waves and currents

rate of continental-shelf sedimentation is

generally faster than rate of deep-ocean sedimentation

active coast line

occurs near where tectonic plates collide

passive coastline

occurs away from tectonic plate boundaries

primary coast

formed by geologic processes not directly related to ocean

secondary coast

formed by marine action
forces are marine life

land deposition/sedimentation


volcanic activity

volcanic islands

tectonic activity

fault coasts

wave-erosion coast

wave NRG focuses on areas that protude

marine deposition coasts

due to accumulation of ocean sediments in one place


part that water sometimes covers


region rarely touched by seawater

barrier island

large sediment deposits that form between ocean and shore-line


forms when waves refraction slows long-shore current allowing sand to settle out


protrudes perpendicular from shore to protect harbor


protrudes perpendicular from shore


creates artificial calm water lagoon.

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