The Discovery of Atlantic Equatorial Waters: A Breakthrough in Oceanography

To begin with, there is not much water.

Sure, the world’s oceans are full of monsters, wonders, and mysteries, but other than that they are just vast, fluid expanses of liquid. Right?


Far from being uniform everywhere, sea water is a mixture of interconnected layers and masses that mix and divide due to currents, eddies, and changes in temperature or salinity.

It is true, beneath the surface of our great ocean, there are waterfalls, sungai And even giant blobs, stretching thousands of miles, somehow manage to avoid detection.

Now, scientists have discovered one of the large blobs in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean; Stretching from the tip of Brazil to the Gulf of Guinea.

Until the discovery of these waters – called Atlantic Equatorial Waters – experts had seen water mixing along the equator in the Pacific and Indian Oceans, but never in the Atlantic Ocean.

“It seems controversial that equatorial water masses exist in the Pacific and Indian Oceans, but are absent in the Atlantic because equatorial circulation and mixing in the three oceans have similar characteristics,” said Victor Zorbas, a physicist and oceanographer at the Shirshov Institute of Physics. said oceanographers in Moscow Life science.

“The newly identified water masses allow us to complete (or at least more accurately describe) the bottom water mass phenotype in the World Ocean.”

Seawater is a mixture of interconnected layers and masses that mix and divide iStock

As the name suggests, the tropical waters of the Atlantic are formed from the mixing of waters separated by currents along the equator.

To differentiate these masses from the surrounding waters, oceanographers analyze the relationship between temperature and salinity in the ocean, which determines the density of seawater.

In 1942, these temperature and salinity charts led to the discovery of tropical waters in the Pacific and Indian Oceans. Life science Notes.

Because they arise from the mixing of northern and southern waters, the tropical waters of the Indo-Pacific have similar temperatures and salinities and curve along lines of constant density, making them easily distinguishable from surrounding waters.

However, for many years, such a relationship was impossible to observe in the Atlantic Ocean.

However, thanks to data collected by the Argo program – an international group of automated, self-diving buoys deployed throughout Earth’s oceans – researchers discovered unremarkable temperature and salinity curves that lie parallel to the waters of the North Atlantic Ocean and Central South. .

The tropical waters of the Atlantic are out of reach.

“The tropical waters of the Atlantic are easily confused with the waters of the central South Atlantic, and to distinguish between the two requires a fairly dense vertical network of temperature and salinity covering the entire Atlantic Ocean,” explains Zorbas in his book. email. to Life science.

The discovery is important because it gives experts a better understanding of how oceans mix, which is important in how heat, oxygen and nutrients are transported around the world.

Not only that! Here’s our best science coverage:

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2023-12-07 23:56:31
#Scientists #discovered #giant #tropical #water #mass #middle #Atlantic #Ocean

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