Questions tagged [oceanography]

Oceanography is the branch of Earth science that studies the ocean. It is also known as oceanology.

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559 views

Which parts of the ocean have been explored?

So there's a sea, right by my house. How do I know if it's been explored, and what info do we have about it? According to the internet, about 5-10% of the world's oceans has been explored. Is there ...
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Is the seafloor of the Gulf of Mexico and Caribbean Sea mostly sedimentary rock?

This comes from a related question about predicting oil (or not) in the deep sea, not just the continental shelf. Apparently the deep seafloor is igneous, which lowers its chances of holding oilfields....
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Are there probably decent oil fields located in the middle of the ocean?

I did a google image search for a world map of offshore oil. Surprisingly I found virtually nothing. I had to search country by country for such maps. I noticed most if not all were located very near ...
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Data sets for historical sea level estimates

I am looking for data sets for historical global sea level estimates. How would I go about doing this the best way? Are there any publicly available resources for this? The timespan I am looking at ...
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What would be the depth variation of a "water ellipsoid" above a reference ellipsoid Earth?

The question If the Earth was a smooth spheroid how deep would be the ocean? has an excellent answer which explains the shape and surface area of an oblate spheroid before calculating the average ...
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Thermohaline current in North Atlantic

The thermohaline current in the North Atlantic ocean sinks because it gets cooled, or it gets cooled because of sinking?
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Ekman Transport

Is it not the Ekman Transport, or wind drag of the surface water, a violation of the Physical evidence of zero relative velocity at any boundary, in viscous flow?
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567 views

Depth of the wind-induced currents and the shoreline

In the open sea the speed of the current in the developed sea can be estimated as 3% the wind velocity at 10 meters. Why is ocean surface velocity around 3% of wind velocity? Is there a similar ...
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Light at the coast - is it different?

I have heard artists talk about the unique quality of light near the sea, and now I live near the coast I want to know if there's any truth in it. Does being near the ocean affect light inland? I'm ...
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Live video feeds for submarine ROVs?

I know of two live video channels showing live feeds of rover dives: Okeanos Explorer for dives with the NOAA Ship Okeanos Explorer. Nautilus live for dives from the Nautilus, operated by the Ocean ...
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How will sea level rise be distributed across the globe?

Sea level rise from melting glaciers will not be uniformly distributed across the globe. However, it isn't clear to me what places will have the most and least extreme changes in sea level rise. I ...
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543 views

Difference in surface temperature between the Northwest Atlantic and Northeast Atlantic

Why is the surface waters in the Northwest Atlantic Ocean colder than the surface waters of the Northeast Atlantic Ocean?
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Is there a formula to calculate shoreline length or water position from ocean?

Assuming in the past the water of the oceans were lower does it also mean that the water was not where it is right now?
 If yes, then how do we calculate approximately where the water would have been ...
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711 views

How to calculate the kinetic energy spectra from ocean current timeseries?

How does one practically compute the kinetic energy spectra from a timeseries of u- and v- Cartesian components of ocean current velocity ($m s^{-1}$) obtained from an Acoustic Doppler Current ...
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What is that drain east of newfoundland

On Google Maps I just found a drain east of Newfoundland: More details at https://www.scribblemaps.com/maps/view/What_is_that/Jafix1 I wonder what that could be? I heard about issues from different ...
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Reasons for choosing LES in stead of RANS models?

In oceanography, is there any particular reason why choosing large eddy simulations in stead of RANS (regardless of the type of flow)? In both cases, 2d simulations would be used (shallow water model)....
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Why is ocean salinity not a good chronometer?

In 1910, George Becker published The Age of the Earth, in which he used the sodium accumulation rate in the ocean to estimate the earth's age as 50 to 70 million years. We now know through various ...
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Lanes of flat ocean surface in coastal waters

When the ocean is still, i.e. there aren't waves that disturb the surface, you often see "lanes" of water that seem flat as opposed to areas where the wind causes ripples. What causes this?
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ERA Interim problem with Waves

Has anyone had a problem with significant wave height (swh) and mean wave period (mwp) from ERA-Interim not matching very well with either a time series of measurements or a different model? Or does ...
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Why is the zonal component of flow in the ocean much larger than the meridional component

I am reading an Oceanography Textbook which explains that in the ocean, planetary vorticity tends to be much larger than relative vorticity therefore, the potential vorticity can be simplified to be f/...
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How does the estaurine turbidity maximum vary depending on the type of estuary?

An estuarine turbidity maximum (ETM) is the area of an estuary that has maximum values in suspended particles in the water column. My questions are What are the main characteristics of the ETM? How ...
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Where do rivers like the Rio de la Plata end and the ocean begin?

We just had visitors (in Monterey, California) from Montevideo, Uruguay. Not being very familiar with Uruguay, after having taken them to Big Sur, I asked them how far they lived from the ocean. ...
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Why doesn't the 71% water of the earth dry or evaporate?

Perhaps a simple question, we know 71% of the earth's surface contains water as oceans. If Earth's age is 4.543 billion years, then I guess it should be decreased with drying or should have been dried ...
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139 views

If a ship on its way to Germany from Norway sank, where will the survivors likely end up?

a) what are the chances, taking into account influencing factors like ocean currents, that these survivors will end up on English shores? b) what are the chances, again taking into account all ...
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Nitrogen cycle semantics; nitrification/nitrogen fixation

Is 'nitrification' and 'nitrogen fixation' used interchangeably to describe biological reduction of $\ce{N2}$ gas to $\ce{NH3}$? I know $\ce{NH4} \to \ce{NO3}$ is called nitrification too.
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Is the ocean guaranteed to warm in a warming climate, regardless of whether it absorbs LW radiation?

More specifically, I've seen some discussion of this article: http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2006/09/why-greenhouse-gases-heat-the-ocean/ which claims that the observed ocean warming ...
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462 views

Is there enough water to cover the surface of a topographically normalized earth?

Is there enough water in the oceans, ice caps, rivers and streams to cover a completely flattened earth, in proportional to land volume and water volume?
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Does perchlorate(rocket fuel) and jet fuel make the salt and ground water near Cape Canaveral dangerous?

I've gotten into paddle surfing and I'm looking for a place to live and surf. I've been looking at an buying a condo in Cocoa Beach because of it’s proximity to Orlando and Cocoa’s decent but ...
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How to determine ocean bottom depth for a data set consisting of longitude and latitude?

Given a data set which consists of pairs of longitudes and latitudes, is it possible to determine an estimate of the ocean bottom depth at that point? I can find maps of estimated sea depths online (...
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How much water does a wave transport into a sea cave?

How much water is transported (volume) as a wave travels into a sea cave? The wave has a height of 1 m and a period of 12 seconds. The average water depth at the cave mouth it 5 m and the width is 15 ...
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What caused the bend in the Emperor/Hawaii chain islands? [duplicate]

what caused the bend that formed in the emperor seamount chain. I've been looking around on websites but i cant seem to find a simple explanation.
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Direct measurments of vertical ocean mixing?

What kinds of vertical ocean mixing measuring instruments are available? This answer How to measure ocean vertical velocity? tells about the measurement of vertical velocity by ADCP, but they give ...
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370 views

Does subduction of plates make them stretch and form the oceans?

Ocean plates subduct beneath continental plates. Does this make the oceanic plates stretch and become thinner so that the elevation of the sea flow is lower? Is this why oceans form where they do - ...
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Differences between linear airy wave theory and Stokes' 5 wave theory? and it's application

What is the difference between linear airy wave theory and 5th order Stokes wave theory? What is the differences in terms of application. I am looking more on offshore structure analysis aspects. ...
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Increase in Stratification late monsoon in Bay of Bengal

I am involved in an experiment in the Bay of Bengal, letting moorings for a year long period and doing ship cruises. We have observed (from mooring CTDs) that the Brunt Vaisala frequency has increased ...
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837 views

The mean direction of waves in a directional distribution

When modelling ocean waves, a directional distribution $D_f(\theta)$ is used together with a frequency spectrum $S(f)$ to describe the energy of waves at a particular frequency $f$ and angle $\theta$. ...
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Why do high tides vary month to month?

I've noticed that some ‘highest‘ high tides in one month are bigger than the highest high-tide of previous months. Why is this so?
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Units of wave spectrum

In ocean spectra such as the Pierson Moskowitz or the JONSWAP models, the units of $S(\omega)$ are $m^2/(rad/s)$ (or whatever unit of measurement you are working in). Where does the $m^2$ come from ...
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What reactions change seawater composition in hydrothermal systems?

Reactions in ocean floor hydrothermal systems are a significant contributor to the mass balance of several major elements in the oceans, in particular magnesium, calcium, sodium, potassium and sulfate....
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Can ocean temperatures affect groundwater storage capacity ?

In a paper published in Nature Geoscience (paper) the authors conclude : Declining precipitation in northern India is linked to Indian Ocean warming, suggesting a previously unrecognized ...
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Rising sea level: flooding of iconic buildings

I realize that this question may be arguably off-topic, but there doesn't seem to be a stack exchange specific to oceanography, geography, or architecture. With rising sea level in mind, how high ...

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