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An Introduction to the World's Oceans, 10/e
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The Surface Currents

Multiple Choice Quiz


Large scale ocean surface currents:
A)are put into motion by the rotation of the Earth.
B)are deflected by the same Coriolis effect as the atmosphere.
C)change rapidly with daily weather changes.
D)move at the same velocity as the winds that drive them.

Which of the following is not listed as a factor in creating the large-scale patterns of surface currents in the ocean?
C)Coriolis effect
D)distribution of land masses

Which of the following describes the patterns of the ocean gyres?
A)circulate in a clockwise direction in the southern hemisphere
B)at latitude 10-15o are driven westward by the trade winds
C)are centered over the equator
D)at latitude 10-15o are driven westward by the westerlies

Gyre currents reflect the equilibrium point between gravity and Ekman transport known as __________ flow.

In the Pacific Ocean, the currents flowing towards the equator are the:
A)Kuroshio and California.
B)Peru and East Australia.
C)California and Peru.
D)Benguela and Brazil.

Which of the following is not one of the four currents that comprise the South Atlantic gyre?
A)South Equatorial

The net flow of surface water from the South to the North Atlantic is balanced by which current?
A)North Equatorial
B)North Atlantic Deep Water

Which of the following statements on the Arctic Ocean is not correct?
A)The Arctic Ocean gyre moves in a clockwise direction.
B)The gyre is centered on the North Pole.
C)The Arctic Ocean is supplied from the Atlantic by the Norwegian Current.
D)The East Greenland Current takes Arctic Ocean water into the North Atlantic.

Wind driven open-ocean surface currents:
A)move at the same speed as the wind.
B)speed up when moving through narrow gaps.
C)slow down when moving through narrow gaps.
D)transport small amounts of water when compared to rivers.

Western intensification of currents is not related to:
A)increases in the Coriolis effect with latitude.
B)the changing strength and direction of winds with latitude.
C)the friction between land masses and ocean water currents.
D)poleward movement of water along the western margins of continents.

Which of the following is a western boundary current?
D)Gulf Stream

Eddies are packets of water that:
A)rotate only in a clockwise direction in the northern hemisphere.
B)may maintain their physical and chemical identity for weeks.
C)occur only at the surface.
D)are quickly assimilated by the surrounding water.

Ekman transport:
A)describes the net flow of water set in motion by the wind.
B)moves 90o to the direction of the wind.
C)moves to the right of the wind direction in the northern hemisphere.
D)is described by each of the above.

Eddies generated by horizontal flows:
A)exist only in the Atlantic Ocean.
B)may be embedded in waters at any depth.
C)are restricted to 10 kilometers in size.
D)occur only in the surface zone.

Which statement accurately describes convergence and divergence?
A)Downwelling water rises until it is denser than the water beneath.
B)Surface divergence occurs when wind driven water collides with a continent.
C)Surface convergence occurs when wind driven water collides with a continent.
D)Surface convergence occurs in regions of upwelling.

Along the west coast of North America:
A)upwelling and downwelling both occur seasonally.
B)north winds lead to summer upwelling.
C)south winds lead to winter downwelling.
D)All of the above descriptions are accurate.

Global ocean circulation is described by all but which of the following?
A)Cold water formed in the North Pacific comprises the largest source of deep water.
B)North Atlantic Deep Water mixes with and is cooled by Antarctic Bottom Water.
C)Deep water from the Atlantic supplies upwellings in the Indian and Pacific Oceans.
D)Surface flow from the Pacific and Indian oceans replaces deep water formed in the North Atlantic.

Pacific Decadal Oscillations have been tied to which of the following climate patterns?
A)prolonged cooling in Northern Europe
B)flooding in Peru
C)prolonged warm, dry conditions in the Pacific Northwest
D)droughts and fires in Indonesia

Which of the following is not used to measure ocean currents?
A)GPS tracked drifting buoys
B)bottles with post cards inside
C)doppler radar
D)fixed buoys
E)measure and record wave direction and speed.

Accidental ocean drifters used to model North Pacific currents include all but:
A)running shoes.
B)yellow ducks.
C)bathtub toys.
D)hockey pucks.

Which of the following is NOT true about the ocean gyres?
A)They transport warm water past the west coasts of continents.
B)They transport warm water from the equator towards the poles.
C)They transport warm water past the east coasts of continents.
D)The are well developed in each of the ocean basins.

Which of the following currents is affected by western intensification?
A)Kurishio Current
B)California Current
C)Canary Current
D)Benguela Current

Which of the following is not a zone of convergence of surface currents?
A)the center of the ocean gyres
B)at the equator
C)in the subtropics
D)along the west coasts of continents in the northern hemisphere

As a result of Ekman transport, upwelling occurs when:
A)wind blows from the north along the west coast of a continent in the northern hemisphere.
B)wind blows from the south along the west coast of a continent in the northern hemisphere.
C)two surface currents converge.
D)wind blows from the north along the east coast of a continent in the northern hemisphere.