1. What is ocean gyre?
• Any large system of rotating ocean currents, particularly those involved with large wind movements. 2. What drives surface ocean currents (how do they form)?
• Wind is what drives ocean currents
• As wind blows across water, they generate force on the water in the same direction that the wind is blowing. (only ~100 m of water is affected) 3. What is the other name for deep water circulation?
• Thermohaline circulation
4. What is upwelling and down welling and how do these ocean phenomenons form? • Upwelling – occurs along the western coast of the continents in the Northern Hemisphere; winds move parallel to the coast from the north and Ekman transport moves the coastal water to the right of the wind direction causing water to flow away from the coast and bringing water from the ocean bottom. • Downwelling – occurs when winds are from the south, Ekman transport moves water to the right of the wind direction and water flows toward the coastline; water piles up along the coastline and sinks 5. What water quality and life conditions would you expect to find in the upwelling and downwelling areas? • Upwelling – coastal upwelling areas have high nutrient content, high biological productivity and rich marine life • Downwelling – downwelling areas have low productivity and poor marine life 6. What is the important role of the surface and deep water currents? • They are important to the world’s weather.
7. Where would you expect to find the warmest ocean water?