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Oceanography

(oceanography)





Oceanography (also called oceanology or marine science ) is the study of the earth 's oceans and their interlinked ecosystems and chemical and physical processes.There are five major divisions within the science:

  • marine geology (orgeological oceanography), including plate tectonics and other studies of the ocean floor;
  • physical oceanography , which is concerned with thephysical attributes of the ocean (such as its temperature-salinity structure, waves , and currents);
  • chemical oceanography (the study of the chemistry ofthe ocean);
  • biologicaloceanography (also sometimes considered a subset of marinebiology ), which is the study of the flora and fauna of the ocean;
  • and meteorologic oceanography , which is concerned with how the atmosphere and the oceaninteract.

The beginnings of oceanography as a science in its own right really began in 1872 , when C.W. Thomson and John Murray (oceanographer) set out on the Challenger expedition (1872-76). It was around this time when assorted nations realised that (seeingas trade used the ocean quite a bit) they should invest in the study of the ocean. Various nations sent out expeditions (as didprivate individuals and institutions), and institutes dedicated to the study of oceanography were created. The two mostwell-known in the United States are the Scripps Institution of Oceanography and Woods Hole OceanographicInstitution . In Britain, a major new research institution is the Southampton Oceanography Centre .

The first international organization of oceanography was created in 1901 as the International Council for the Exploration of the Sea . Later, in 1966 , the U.S. Congress created the National Council for Marine Resources and EngineeringDevelopment, which was in charge of exploring and studying all aspects of Oceanography. It also enabled the National ScienceFoundation to give grant money to people doing studies in the field of oceanography.

See also





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