Atlantic Ocean's 'missing' water body found

Scientists have made a breakthrough discovery in the Atlantic Ocean, finding a large body of water known as the Atlantic Equatorial Water.

Publication: 26.11.2023 - 12:26
Atlantic Ocean's 'missing' water body found
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This discovery solves a long-standing mystery dating back to the 1940s when similar equatorial waters were found in the Pacific and Indian Oceans. The elusive Atlantic mass, stretching from Brazil to the Gulf of Guinea, was identified using data from the Argo program, which employs robotic floats to survey the world's oceans.

Significance of the Discovery

Viktor Zhurbas, a physicist at The Shirshov Institute of Oceanology, noted the significance of this finding in understanding global ocean circulation. He emphasized that this discovery fills a gap in the knowledge of the world's oceanic water masses. The Atlantic Equatorial Water, formed by the mixing of the South and North Atlantic Central Waters, was previously undetected due to its similarities with the South Atlantic Central Water.

Impact on Oceanography

This discovery is crucial for the study of the ocean's role in heat, oxygen, and nutrient transport around the globe. Understanding the mixing process of the ocean is vital for comprehending its influence on climate and ecosystems. The full study detailing this discovery was published in the Geophysical Research Letters on October 28.

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