Bathymetry of the Sea Floor. “Mapping the Ocean Floor How and Why” . abyssal plain isolume (lines of equal light) bathymetry (bathymetric) isometric (lines of equal measure) continental shelf isotherm (lines of equal temperature) continental slope mid-ocean ridge
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“Mapping the Ocean Floor
How and Why”
isolume (lines of equal light)
isometric (lines of equal measure)
isotherm (lines of equal temperature)
contour lines (lines of equal height)
isobar (lines of equal pressure)
isobath (lines of equal depth)
isohaline (lines of equal salinity)
“Topography can be used to identify and characterize deep water features of the seafloor to reveal upwelling-producing canyons, ridges, and escarpments. Digital data can be correlated with sea surface temperature and chlorophyll, and distribution of marine birds, mammals, and fishes/invertebrates.” – NOAA Bathymetry California
“The deepest parts of the Chesapeake Bay and its estuaries may represent a natural barrier to cross-channel sediment transport. This map was developed as a starting point to assist in modeling sediment transport in the Bay”.
Technologies have evolved to more accurately survey the ocean floor
Measuring water depth: Echosounding
Test your knowledge
If a sound pulse takes 2 seconds to travel to the seafloor and return to the ship, what is the depth to the seafloor? (Use 1500 m/sec as the speed of sound).
USGS Project at Upper Lake Mary, Arizona