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Questions tagged [water]

For questions relating to the liquid phase of water (H₂O), specifically its structure, properties, and uses in meteorology and Earth Science.

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21 votes
4 answers

What would be the effect of bringing seawater pipes to the Sahara desert?

This is a childhood dream. What would happen if pipes were installed (similar in principle to the Great Man-Made River, but for seawater) to continuously pump seawater into the Sahara desert. Let'...
ZakC's user avatar
  • 311
20 votes
1 answer

What fraction of dry land is below sea level?

Someone just asked me if it would be practical to counter the rise of sea level by pumping water into storage on land. It struck me that if there is enough land below sea level, this would require ...
mwengler's user avatar
  • 303
16 votes
3 answers

How much water is the atmosphere losing to space?

Up until recently, I was under a (wrong) impression that the amount of planetary cumulative water resources was finite as I believed its escape from the atmosphere was impossible. I believed that, ...
amphibient's user avatar
11 votes
2 answers

Was the filling of the Three Gorges Dam's impact on the Earth's rotation rate detectable?

I'm a big fan of Vsauce and the video How Earth Moves is just one example of science related to the Earth available there (there's plenty more). But the statement in this video starting at ...
uhoh's user avatar
  • 7,122
31 votes
5 answers

Is it possible for rivers to freeze completely and stop flowing?

Is it possible for rivers to freeze completely in the winter and stop flowing? Are there known examples of this? If yes, how large can these rivers be and where does the water go? There are several ...
Glacialis's user avatar
  • 682
33 votes
11 answers

Why does the salt in the oceans not sink to the bottom?

This is something that just occurred to me. If heavier elements sink, then how can the entire ocean be salty? Shouldn't the 'salt', because of its density, all sink to the bottom of the ocean? In ...
user avatar
12 votes
3 answers

Water on Mars and Earth

If water on Earth came from meteorites, why doesn't Mars have substantial water? What made it more highly probable on Earth than on Mars?
Porcupine's user avatar
  • 647
6 votes
0 answers

How much of Earth's surface would be covered by water if all ice melted? [duplicate]

I'm trying to find how much water would be on the surface of Earth and how much surface would it cover (how much land will remain) if all the ice at the North and South Poles (and everywhere else) ...
theagouf's user avatar
35 votes
3 answers

How would plate tectonics differ if Earth had no water?

Water plays a crucial role in plate tectonics by easing the brittle and ductile deformation of the Earth's lithosphere. Water lowers the Mohr-Coulomb for brittle fractures. During ductile deformation, ...
tobias47n9e's user avatar
  • 3,956
18 votes
2 answers

What does it mean for waves to "feel" the bottom?

While typically waves are said to "feel" the bottom when the depth of the water is less than half the wavelength, what does it mean for the waves to "feel"? Furthermore, why does this happen at the ...
zergsomg's user avatar
  • 183
10 votes
3 answers

Will the oceans swallow all of the land?

I am wondering why, since the oceans could feasibly hold all of the dry land, they in fact do not. For example, the Mariana Trench drops to -10.9km, while Mount Everest only reaches to +8.8km. ...
Him's user avatar
  • 203
8 votes
2 answers

Does Earth risk losing its oceans to space due to global warming?

I read that we are facing the very real possibility of Earth's average temperature rising by more that 2 degrees Celsius by the end of the century. As I understand our planet is constantly loosing ...
Denis Kulagin's user avatar
7 votes
2 answers

Why should there not be water deep (e.g. below 6 kms) in the Earth's crust?

In 1970, the USSR began drilling at the Kola Super-deep Borehole. The target depth was 15,000 meters; The stated areas of study were the deep structure of the Baltic Shield, seismic discontinuities ...
Conrado's user avatar
  • 173
7 votes
2 answers

How would the Earth look without water in the oceans?

Has there ever been a movie, a documentary, or an image that provides a visualization of the oceans without water? I'm writing an article on geology and I thought a visual representation would be of ...
user avatar
4 votes
0 answers

Endogenous Theories For the Origin of Earth's Water (Dry/Wet Accretion?)

I have really two questions: (1) what evidence is there in favour that the majority of Earth's water formed with the planet. (2) what evidence is there that the majority of water did not form with ...
Bell's user avatar
  • 181
2 votes
1 answer

Does water affect radiometric dating?

When radiometric dating, would water affect the measured age of old rocks ? Specifically would water affect Uranium-238 to Lead-206 dating of Zircon crystals? Would it affect the lead since it’s ...
Beans's user avatar
  • 211
2 votes
1 answer

At what point are water droplets too small to make a rainbow?

This question asks How to tell if fog is made out of water droplets or ice crystals? I know that ice fog makes a rainbow where fog does not. Ice crystals aside: How does the water droplet size ...
Muze's user avatar
  • 1
1 vote
1 answer

Is there a lake whose sole source of water is rain and has a hole at the bottom draining it?

Oregon lake has a drain hole at the bottom but also has water flowing into it. Pingualuit crater has no water flowing into it but probably has no drain hole at the bottom either. I'm wondering if ...
Timothy's user avatar
  • 318