MARS 1010 Paleoceanography

MARS 1010 Paleoceanography - o The ocean is warmer overall...

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MARS 1010: Paleoceanography 12/10/2007 10:10:00 Geologic Time Scale:  Precambrian: Microbial world  o 3.8 billion to 500 million years ago. Paleozoic: “Cambrian Explosion” (540-250 million years ago)   o Old world life.   o The age of fish and amphibians. Mesozoic: the world of reptiles, flowering plants o 250 up until 65 million years ago Cenozoic: mammals began to become dominant. o about 65 million years ago.   How did oceans circulate in the past?  A single world ocean named Panthalassa Large subtropical Gyres No circumpolar circulation Water spends large amounts of time absorbing heat at the equator o The world would have been warmer than it is today but not as warm as  it would get during the Mesozoic period. Two Circulation Modes Circumequatorial ocean: Warm world o Equatorial current goes around the world o Water absorbs a lot of heat: very warm o Gyres move this heat poleward
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Unformatted text preview: o The ocean is warmer overall o The entire earth warms evaporation is enhanced o GREEN HOUSE WORLD o Sluggish thermohaline circulation o Weak vertical stratification o Deep water is really warm! Circumpolar oceans: Cool world o qPolar current goes all the way around the world o water loses a lot of heat: very cold o Polar continents are isolated and insulated o Ice caps form o Deep water formation carries cold water to equator o Ice caps form o Entire ocean cools, and the Earth experiences ice ages o ICE-HOUSE WORLD o Vigorous thermohaline circulation o Strong vertical stratification o Deep water is cold, and ice ages tend to result. A warming earth that melts any existing ice caps will get even warmer as the high latitude albedo changes from high (reflective white ice) to low (heat absorbing ocean or land)...
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MARS 1010 Paleoceanography - o The ocean is warmer overall...

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