Table of Contents
- 1 What do deep currents flow along?
- 2 Where are deep ocean currents found?
- 3 What is deep circulation?
- 4 How does deep circulation differ from surface wind driven circulation?
- 5 How do deep ocean currents form for kids?
- 6 What causes currents to flow?
- 7 What two factors are responsible of deep currents?
- 8 What two forces primarily drive deep ocean currents?
What do deep currents flow along?
Ocean currents flow like vast rivers, sweeping along predictable paths. Some ocean currents flow at the surface; others flow deep within water. By moving heat from the equator toward the poles, ocean currents play an important role in controlling the climate. Ocean currents are also critically important to sea life.
What are deep ocean currents moved by?
These deep-ocean currents are driven by differences in the water’s density, which is controlled by temperature (thermo) and salinity (haline). This process is known as thermohaline circulation. In the Earth’s polar regions ocean water gets very cold, forming sea ice.
Where are deep ocean currents found?
The strongest and most renown surface ocean currents are the Gulf Stream, that travels from the Caribbean Sea, along the East coast of North America and across the Atlantic Ocean to Europe, and the Kuroshio Current in the North Pacific Ocean off the East coast of Asia.
What are deep currents and how do they form?
Deep currents, also known as thermohaline circulation, result from differences in water density. These currents occur when cold, dense water at the poles sinks. Surface water flows to replace sinking water, causing a conveyor belt-like effect of water circulating around the globe on a 1000-year journey.
What is deep circulation?
Deep ocean circulation. Deep ocean circulation is primarily driven by density differences. It is called thermohaline circulation, because density differences are due to temperature and salinity. Density differences are small and the flow velocity is low, of the order of a few cm/s.
Why is deep water current important?
Deep water currents return nutrients to the surface by a process known as upwelling. Upwelling brings nutrients back into sunlight, where plankton can use the nutrients to provide energy that drives an ocean’s ecosystem.
How does deep circulation differ from surface wind driven circulation?
How does deep circulation differ from surface wind-driven circulation? Deep circulation is water & motion caused by mixing water of differing densities. It flows along the bottom mixes with other water rises and warms and eventually becomes part of a surface current.
Which way does the ocean flow?
The water at the ocean surface is moved primarily by winds that blow in certain patterns because of the Earth’s spin and the Coriolis Effect. Gyres flow clockwise in Northern Hemisphere oceans and counterclockwise in Southern Hemisphere oceans because of the Coriolis Effect.
How do deep ocean currents form for kids?
Water that is of a lower temperature or a higher salinity has a greater density, and sinks to the ocean floor. It is replaced by surface water, which then becomes cold and/or salty. This creates a system of deep-water and surface currents circulating around the globe.
What are surface currents?
A current is a stream of moving water that flows through the ocean. Surface currents are caused mainly by winds but not daily winds. Surface currents are caused by the major wind belts. So they can keep water moving in the same direction.
What causes currents to flow?
Ocean currents can be caused by wind, density differences in water masses caused by temperature and salinity variations, gravity, and events such as earthquakes or storms. Currents are cohesive streams of seawater that circulate through the ocean.
How are deep water currents formed at poles?
At the earth’s poles, when water freezes, the salt doesn’t necessarily freeze with it, so a large volume of dense cold, salt water is left behind. When this dense water sinks to the ocean floor, more water moves in to replace it, creating a current.
What two factors are responsible of deep currents?
These deep-ocean currents are driven by differences in the water’s density , which is controlled by temperature (thermo) and salinity (haline). This process is known as thermohaline circulation. In the Earth’s polar regions ocean water gets very cold, forming sea ice.
What causes deep currents?
Currents may also be generated by density differences in water masses caused by temperature and salinity variations. These currents move water masses through the deep ocean—taking nutrients, oxygen, and heat with them. Occasional events also trigger serious currents.
What two forces primarily drive deep ocean currents?
There are two types of ocean currents: surface currents and deep water currents. Primary forces such as solar heating and winds start ocean currents. Secondary forces, including gravity and the Coriolis force, direct where the current goes. These are some of the facts about ocean currents.
How do deep currents from and move in the ocean?
Unlike surface currents, deep ocean currents are driven primarily by changes in the density of seawater . As water moves towards the North Pole, it gets colder. It also has a higher concentration of salt, because the ice crystals that form trap water while leaving salt behind.