Atlas of Oceans: A Fascinating Hidden World by John Farndon

By John Farndon

Seventy in step with cent of our planet's floor is roofed with water, yet most normal atlases specialize in the opposite thirty in step with cent. This attention-grabbing and wonderfully awarded survey of the world's oceans and what lives inside of them is released in organization with the Census on Marine existence, a decade-long clinical initiative among researchers from over eighty nations to assessing and explaining the wealthy range and abundance of undersea lifestyles. each element of the oceans is explored, from the seabed, continental cabinets, currents, water movement and waves, to the entire natural world that calls those locations domestic. every one ocean (the Atlantic, Pacific, Indian, Southern, Arctic, the Seas of Europe, the Eurasian Inland Seas and the South China Sea) is tested in nice aspect, revealing its features, underwater topography, significant species and specific good points, together with the consequences of habitat erosion. subject matters coated contain: - Coastlines, shores, estuaries, salt marshes - the conflict of guy and natural world - Temperate waters - plankton, seaweed forests and the Newfoundland nice Banks - Tropical waters - coral reefs, mangrove swamps and seagrass meadows - Polar waters - floating ice, migrations, lifestyles underneath the ice - The open ocean - currents, CO2 garage capability, international warming and acidification - the sea deeps - the mysterious twilight international and the least explored of all environments.

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Some freezes on the underside of the crust without ever emerging. Some oozes up into vertical cracks opened up by the pressure of the magma to form sheets of rock called dikes as it freezes. Some bursts right through to spill out onto the seafloor, where it freezes instantly in the cold water in blobs called pillow lavas. Scientists debate whether the material welling up from the mantle along the mid-ocean ridges is actively pushing the plates either side apart, or whether the material is simply oozing into the gap left as the plates diverge by other means.

The effects are particularly pronounced along the ridge itself. Here, cool seawater is drawn continually through the hot rocks, dissolving metals and depositing them on the seafloor. Fractures around the volcanoes fill with water that gets tremendously hot as well as dense with dissolved minerals. Remarkably, these hot, chemically challenging environments act as incubators to microbes that can not only survive but thrive even in some of the harshest conditions life has ever been found to endure.

It flows deep down through the Atlantic right across the equator to meet the even denser Antarctic Bottom Water (AABW). The circulation moves slowly eastwards deep in the Southern Ocean, past South Africa and Australia, to run through the Pacific before finally rising to the surface and warming up to flow westwards through the Pacific and Indian oceans into the Atlantic in the top layers of the ocean. Finally, it heads north through the Atlantic to Greenland to start the cycle again. It takes a millennium or more for water to go right around – so water coming back to Greenland now began its journey in the time of the Vikings.

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