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Factors Affecting Distribution Of Temperature Of Ocean

The temperature distribution at different parts of the ocean show vertical and spatial variations. Like land, the ocean water...

The temperature distribution at different parts of the ocean show vertical and spatial variations. Like land, the ocean heats up due to solar energy. As compared to the land, the cooling and heating process takes place at a much slower pace on the ocean. 

Factors that affect the distribution of temperature of ocean water:
  • Latitudes: As We move towards poles from the equator, the temperature of the surface water gets reduced. It is because insolation gets reduced as we move closer to the poles. 
  • Prevailing wind: The wind passing from the land to the surface water of the oceans, propel the water water from the coast and upwell the cold from beneath the surface. This gives rise to longitudinal variation in its temperature.
  • Ocean currents: Cold ocean currents tend to reduce the temperature of the warmer areas and similarly warm currents tend to enhance the temperature of colder regions. The Gulf stream, which is an example of warm current, increases the temperature of Europe’s west coast and North America’s east coast. The Labrador ocean currents are an example of cold current reducing the temperature of North America’s north-east coast. 
  • Unequal distribution of land and water;
  • Minor Factors
    • Submarine ridges
    • Local weather conditions like storms, cyclones, hurricanes, fog, cloudiness, evaporation and conden­sation, and
    • Location and shape of the sea.
Distribution of Temperature

Distribution of temperature varies both horizontally and vertically. Let us study it under

FAQs on Factors Affecting Distribution of Temperature of the Ocean:
Ques 1. What are the primary factors that influence the distribution of temperature in the ocean?

Answer : The distribution of temperature in the ocean is primarily influenced by factors such as solar radiation, ocean currents, wind patterns, proximity to landmasses, depth, and the presence of upwelling or downwelling zones. These factors collectively contribute to the spatial variations in ocean temperature.

Ques 2. How do ocean currents affect the distribution of temperature?

Answer : Ocean currents play a crucial role in redistributing heat within the ocean. Warm ocean currents transport heat from the equator towards higher latitudes, resulting in higher temperatures in those regions. Conversely, cold ocean currents bring cooler waters from polar regions towards lower latitudes, leading to lower temperatures in those areas. The interaction of different currents contributes to the complex patterns of temperature distribution in the ocean.

Ques 3. What is the role of proximity to landmasses in temperature distribution?

Answer : Proximity to landmasses influences the temperature distribution in the ocean. Coastal regions tend to experience greater temperature variability compared to open ocean areas. Landmasses absorb and release heat differently from the surrounding water, leading to localized temperature variations. Additionally, factors such as coastal upwelling or downwelling can significantly impact the temperature distribution near coastlines, as upwelling brings cold, nutrient-rich waters to the surface, while downwelling introduces warmer waters from the surface to deeper layers.

Read Also : Range Of Ocean Temperature

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