Air-Sea Connection

How are the ocean and the atmosphere connected?

The Solar Connection

There are approximately five components that make up the air around us. There is 78.08% of nitrogen, 20.95% of oxygen, 0.93% of argon, 0.03% of carbon dioxide, and 0.01% of other gases. There are four layers of the atmosphere. The lowest layer of the atmosphere is the troposphere. The troposphere extends from the surface of Earth to about 15,000 meters above sea level. The next layer is the stratosphere, which continues to about 50,000 meters. Above the stratosphere lies the mesosphere, which extends to about 90,000 meter. The top layer is the thermosphere, which goes beyond 110,000 meters into space. You can see clouds because water vapor has condensed. The amount of water vapor in the air relates to the air temperature, density, and pressure. When saturated or nearly saturated air cools, its molecules vibrate more slowly. When water vapor molecules slow down enough, they condense into liquid water droplets or into ice crystals when the temperature is sufficiently cold. When a warm, moisture-laden air mass collides with a cooler air mass, precipitation often occurs.

The Coriolis Effect

The tendency for the path of a moving object to deflect to the right in the Northern Hemisphere and to the left in the Southern Hemisphere. The Coriolis effect is a major factor affecting the distribution of the Earth's heat, nutrients, and many types of life by shaping the flow of wind and currents.

The Coriolis Effect cont.

Now on to "The Winds"

The Winds

The Coriolis Effect just so happens to influence the wind. The Coriolis effect deflects the air to the right in the Northern Hemisphere and to the left in the Southern Hemisphere. This gives the air a circular flow pattern rather than a straight north-south pattern. It's not as simple as a circular flow between the poles and the equator. The wind patterns exist in smaller regions called atmospheric circulation cells. Atmospheric circulation cells are six distinct air masses (three in each hemisphere) with individual airflow patterns. Warm air rises at the equator and moves north due to convection. The air doesn't make it all the way to the North Pole. By the time it reaches approximately 30 degrees North, it has become dense enough from cooling and moisture loss to sink. Most of the air descends and flows back to the equator, deflecting to West as it flows.This is what cause trade winds.

Air-Sea Connection

This is an image of the air and sea working together. All fresh water that flows, flows into the sea. The sea sucks fresh water in. There is tons of gravity on our planet. You can obviously tell day by day simply because you're not floating in the air. Gravity helps the water stay afloat and not floating in the atmosphere, and it helps the water flow.