Lecture14_EAS1600_Fall08

Lecture14_EAS1600_Fall08 - EAS 1600 In tr o d u c ti o n to...

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Ocean Circulation - Why do we care??? • Transport heat from tropics to poles • Influence weather, climate, and commerce • Distribute nutrients and scatter organisms Gulf Stream sea surface temperatures (off the east coast of the US) as measured by satellite. Courtesy of NASA. EAS 1600 Introduction to Environmental Science Lecture 14 - The Oceans: Composition, Structure, Circulation
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Earlier we found that the atmosphere and its circulation is unable to balance the energy inputs and outputs. Even with the general circulation and the hydrologic cycle, there is an excess of energy in the tropical regions and a deficit of energy in the mid-latitudes and polar regions. Let’s see if the oceans are able to make up the difference. But first, let’s review some basic facts about the ocean. ..
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The Oceans of the World Pacific (166,241,000 sq km) Atlantic (86,557,000 sq km) Indian (73,427,000 sq km) Arctic (9,485,000 sq km) The Major Seas South China (2,974,600 sq km); Caribbean (2,515,900 sq km); Mediterranean (2,510,000 sq km); Bering (2,261,100 sq km); Gulf of Mexico (1,507,600 sq km); Sea of Okhotsk (1,392,100 sq km); Sea of Japan or East Sea (1,012,900 sq km); Hudson Bay (730,100 sq km); East China (664,600 sq km); Andaman (564,900 sq km); Black (507,900 sq km); Red (453,000 sq km)
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The Ocean As A Basin
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The Ocean Floor Topography highly variable with ridges, trenches, seamounts, etc. We will have to wait until our discussion of plate tectonics to learn of the processes that form these features. How deep is the ocean? Ocean Average Depth(m) Deepest Point (m) Pacific 4,188 Mariana Trench - 11,033 Atlantic 3,872 Puerto Rico Trench - 8,648 Indian 3,872 Java Trench - 7,725 Arctic 1,038 Eurasia basin - 5,450 Average 4,000
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Ocean Composition
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The Ocean As Briny Water ~ 97% of “ocean water” by weight is actually H 2 O. Here are the average mass amounts of the most common salts or ions Non-H 2 O Components Chloride Sodium Sulfate Magnesium Calcium Potassium Carbonic Acid Bromine Boric Acid Strontium Total Cl - Na + SO 4 2- Mg ++ Ca ++ K + HCO 3 - Br - H 3 BO 3 Sr ++ concentration g/kg of ion 18.98 10.56 2.65 1.27 0.4 0.38 0.14 0.065 0.026 0.013 34.48
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Salinity Salinity = g of salt per g of ocean water ~ 0.035 = 3.5% = 35% 0 We will see shortly that ocean salinity plays a major role in ocean circulation and perhaps even climate change. Why is the ocean saltier than the fresh water that feeds it? Is there any limit to how salty the ocean can get?
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Annual mean Salinity Map
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precipitation and evaporation Highest ocean salinity is between 20-30 o north and south or the equator, because evaporation exceeds precipitation. Salinity at the equator and poleward of 30
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Lecture14_EAS1600_Fall08 - EAS 1600 In tr o d u c ti o n to...

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