It may be hard to believe but there the truth is that there are huge mass of water that are always traveling at great speed under our oceans. The drifting is very complicated because there are many factors that brings together in order to push large amount of ocean under water within the vast ocean floor. And one of these factors is the natural concept that dense water tends to sink while the lighter water tends to rise up.
Water masses were not always the same. The coldest and saltiest water in our ocean were the heaviest form of water concentrations.This ocean water was made dense due to the freezing temperatures of the Arctic or Antarctic region. As the ocean water freeze in these regions, it drains out the salt in it to which sinks right to the bottom of the sea.
While the waters in the tropics are less salty and is very warm and hot as dense as the cold waters from the Arctic and Antarctica regions. The denser water pushes the less dense water upward. And in the surrounding, air pushed the salty water above it. The shape of the coastline also helps in pushing the water in a constant circulation. With these factors, the water flows much faster and now becomes what we call an “ocean current”.
Ocean currents are like rivers under the sea. It has its owncurrents which constantly drifting. One of the world’s most famous oceans current is the Gulf Stream. This ocean current was discovered by no less than Benjamin Franklin.
The Gulf Stream makes its starting point in the Atlantic Ocean preferably near the Equator. The current was produce by the steady winds that were fueled by the harsh winds coming from the east. They wins pushes the salt waters on the Caribbean coasts bringing it into the coast of Florida and into the east coast of the United States. The ocean current continues to drift northward into the Cape Hatteras.
In this region, the Gulf Stream becomes narrower and now drifting at higher speed. In fact its speed can be as fast as several miles per hour. The Gulf Stream is less than 10 miles wide and is located 1,800 feet below the ocean. And like the rivers that are found in land, the Gulf Stream always changes it positions within the area. It also had no definite course to run to.
Aside for ocean currents, there are also currents that flows the opposite direction below these currents which are called countercurrents. The countercurrents are formed due to the rotation of the earth.