Oceanography

Oceanography is the study of the biological and physical properties of the world’s largest bodies of water, the oceans.

Oceanography is a branch of Earth science and geography that studies the oceans, including their physical and biological aspects, as well as the interactions between the oceans and the atmosphere, land, and other bodies of water. It involves the study of ocean currents, waves, tides, temperature, salinity, and other physical characteristics, as well as the diverse array of marine life that inhabits the world’s oceans.

A girl with a white sweatshirt and black leggings dances in the shallow water of the beach by the ocean. Her back is to the camera and the sun is shining with a clear blue sky.

Oceans Produce Half of the World’s Oxygen

Caitlin Dempsey

The oceans produce over half of the oxygen in the Earth's atmosphere, making them a vital source of oxygen for life on our planet.

A calm ocean viewed from a sandy beach.

Geography Facts About the Atlantic Ocean

Caitlin Dempsey

The Atlantic Ocean, named after the Greek god Atlas, is the second-largest ocean in the world.

The current US Exclusive Economic Zone is delineated by yellow outlines. As of January 2021, 53 percent of the United States' ocean, coastal, and Great Lakes waterways were unmapped. Map: NOAA Integrated Ocean and Coastal Mapping.

53% of U.S. Ocean, Coastal, and Great Lakes Waters are Unmapped

Caitlin Dempsey

According to a new report by the United States' federal Interagency Working Group on Ocean Coastal Mapping, 53 percent of the country's ocean, coastal, and Great Lakes water is still unmapped.

Map showing the world's ocean gyres. Source: NOAA.

How Ocean Currents Move Pollution Around the World

Katarina Samurović

How does pollution from plastic, trash, and oil spills move around Earth's oceans?

A father and daughter look out at the Pacific Ocean.

How Much Would the Ocean Rise if Everyone Sat in it?

Geo Contributor

If everyone in the world decided to sit in the ocean all at once, how much would the sea level rise?