[16] Magellan stopped at one uninhabited Pacific island before stopping at Guam in March 1521. High islands are of volcanic origin, and many contain active volcanoes. The Pacific Ocean is the largest body of water in the world and is a mind-blowing 46% of the Earth’s water surface and about one-third of its total surface area! It extends over 2000 kilometres in the north east cost of Australia. In 219 BC Xu Fu sailed out into the Pacific searching for the elixir of immortality. The Manila galleons operated for two and a half centuries, linking Manila and Acapulco, in one of the longest trade routes in history. [55], The coral reefs of the South Pacific are low-lying structures that have built up on basaltic lava flows under the ocean's surface. [72], The andesite line is the most significant regional distinction in the Pacific. He called it Mar Pacífico, which in both Portuguese and Spanish means "peaceful sea". [36] Since the end of World War II, many former colonies in the Pacific have become independent states. The Biggest Ocean in the World. It is larger than any of the other 4 oceans, covering nearly 46 percent of all free waters and approximately 33 percent of the planet’s surface. On Northern and Southern sides, it is further capped by the North and South Arctics. [24], Growing imperialism during the 19th century resulted in the occupation of much of Oceania by European powers, and later Japan and the United States. By contrast, the Atlantic Ocean is increasing in size. This huge sea flows through the Bering Strait to connect with the Arctic Ocean, passing through the oceanic territory of both Russia and the United States. Ocean circulation (caused by the Coriolis effect) subdivides it into two largely independent volumes of water, which meet at the equator: the North(ern) Pacific Ocean and South(ern) Pacific Ocean. [67] Worldwide, tropical cyclone activity peaks in late summer, when the difference between temperatures aloft and sea surface temperatures is the greatest; however, each particular basin has its own seasonal patterns. For information about seas in general, see ocean List of seas, by ocean Pacific Ocean. While it hosts over 7,000 different islands belonging to more than 28 different nations, the Caribbean Sea is possibly even more renowned for containing one of the deepest points on Earth: the Cayman Trench. The Great Barrier Reef, which is the largest coral reef in the world, is in Australia. In the arctic, icing from October to May can present a hazard for shipping while persistent fog occurs from June to December. This tree largest … In 1768, Pierre-Antoine Véron, a young astronomer accompanying Louis Antoine de Bougainville on his voyage of exploration, established the width of the Pacific with precision for the first time in history. Ocean currents govern the world's weather and churn a kaleidoscope of life. The Pacific Ocean is the largest of all the oceans. The western Pacific has many major marginal seas, including the South China Sea, the East China Sea, the Sea of Japan, the Sea of Okhotsk, the Philippine Sea, the Coral Sea, and the Tasman Sea. The first contact of European navigators with the western edge of the Pacific Ocean was made by the Portuguese expeditions of António de Abreu and Francisco Serrão, via the Lesser Sunda Islands, to the Maluku Islands, in 1512,[12][13] and with Jorge Álvares's expedition to southern China in 1513,[14] both ordered by Afonso de Albuquerque from Malacca. However, it receives very little continental drainage as compared to other oceans. It’s fed by the Carbibbean Current and the Antilles Current, and its warm waters are a breeding ground for storms. Earth’s beautiful oceans are some of the most striking natural features that we can observe and enjoy. The 'Ring of Fire' is defined by a nearly continuous series of oceanic trenches, island arcs, and volcanic mountain ranges and/or boundaries of several plates. According to the CIA World Factbook, it covers 28 percent of the Earth and is equal in size to nearly all of the land area on the Earth. Its southern arm becomes the chilled slow, south-flowing California Current. “Pacific-ing Asian Pacific American History,”, This page was last edited on 14 December 2020, at 06:13. Covering approximately an entire fifth of the world’s surface, the Atlantic Ocean has the largest drainage area in the world. Ocean currents are like giant conveyor belts flowing through the oceans moving huge amounts of water all the time. In fact, oceans cover more than 70% of Earth. On the western side of the Pacific Ocean the Dutch threatened the Spanish Philippines. The Arctic Ocean is the smallest of the five. By occupying Easter Island, Chile joined the imperial nations. It is situated on Eastern side of America and on the western side of Asia and Australia. At 165.25 million square kilometers (63.8 million square miles) in area, it covers about 46% of the Earth’s water surface and about one-third of its total surface area, making it larger than all of the Earth’s land area combined. [41], As the Pacific straddles the 180th meridian, the West Pacific (or western Pacific, near Asia) is in the Eastern Hemisphere, while the East Pacific (or eastern Pacific, near the Americas) is in the Western Hemisphere.[42]. Outside the andesite line, volcanism is of the explosive type, and the Pacific Ring of Fire is the world's foremost belt of explosive volcanism. The Pacific Ocean is the largest and deepest of Earth's oceanic divisions. [15] He named it Mar del Sur (literally, "Sea of the South" or "South Sea") because the ocean was to the south of the coast of the isthmus where he first observed the Pacific. Spanning an area of 168,723,000 square km, the Pacific Ocean accounts for … The Pacific Ocean is located between the Southern Ocean, Asia, and Australia in the Western Hemisphere. [24], Later, in the quest for Terra Australis ("the [great] Southern Land"), Spanish explorations in the 17th century, such as the expedition led by the Portuguese navigator Pedro Fernandes de Queirós, discovered the Pitcairn and Vanuatu archipelagos, and sailed the Torres Strait between Australia and New Guinea, named after navigator Luís Vaz de Torres. The Pacific Ocean meets the Atlantic Ocean south of South America at Cape Horn . In addition, the Pacific Ocean has served as the crash site of satellites, including Mars 96, Fobos-Grunt, and Upper Atmosphere Research Satellite. This South China Sea connects to the neighboring East China Sea through the Taiwan Strait, with its China Sea Basin reaching an astounding maximum depth of 16,457 feet. In 1520, navigator Ferdinand Magellan and his crew were the first to cross the Pacific in recorded history. The Pacific Ocean is the largest ocean in the world. The dissimilarity continues northeastward along the western edge of the Andes Cordillera along South America to Mexico, returning then to the islands off California. The Westerlies and associated jet stream within the Mid-Latitudes can be particularly strong, especially in the Southern Hemisphere, due to the temperature difference between the tropics and Antarctica,[70] which records the coldest temperature readings on the planet. The largest region of the Global Ocean, the Pacific Ocean has the Arctic Ocean to the north, the Southern Ocean to the south, Australia, and Asia to the west and the Americas to the east. [87][88] Several nuclear weapons were lost in the Pacific Ocean,[89] including one-megaton bomb lost during the 1965 Philippine Sea A-4 incident.[90]. [44] Tsunamis, caused by underwater earthquakes, have devastated many islands and in some cases destroyed entire towns. All these are actually part of the large world ocean. 5 6 7. The Pacific Ocean, the largest of the oceans, also reaches northward from the Southern Ocean to the Arctic Ocean. The largest islands in the Indian Ocean are Sri Lanka and Madagascar, both of which are home to rich ecosystems of diverse and fascinating wildlife. Its average depth is 4,280 m (14,040 ft; 2,340 fathoms), putting the total water volume at roughly 710,000,000 km3 (170,000,000 cu mi). Answer. [47], The Pacific Ocean has most of the islands in the world. Covering approximately one-fifth of the total ocean area of the world. If you look at a world map, you can see that Earth’s 5 oceans are vast. For most of Magellan's voyage from the Strait of Magellan to the Philippines, the explorer indeed found the ocean peaceful; however, the Pacific is not always peaceful. Here basaltic lavas gently flow out of rifts to build huge dome-shaped volcanic mountains whose eroded summits form island arcs, chains, and clusters. Significant contributions to oceanographic knowledge were made by the voyages of HMS Beagle in the 1830s, with Charles Darwin aboard;[29] HMS Challenger during the 1870s;[30] the USS Tuscarora (1873–76);[31] and the German Gazelle (1874–76). [27], The 18th century marked the beginning of major exploration by the Russians in Alaska and the Aleutian Islands, such as the First Kamchatka expedition and the Great Northern Expedition, led by the Danish Russian navy officer Vitus Bering. The main culprits are those using the rivers for disposing of their waste. Pacific Ocean is the largest among all the five oceans of the world . Today we’ll look at 10 of the largest oceans and seas in the world and learn about what sets them apart. The Pacific Ocean is the largest ocean covering more than 30% of the Earth. List of Oceans Largest Oceans; Deepest Waters; Earth Details; The surface of the planet is approximately 71% water and contains (5) five oceans, including the Arctic, Atlantic, Indian, Pacific and Southern. [78], Fish are an important economic asset in the Pacific. The Pacific Ocean is the largest and deepest of the world ocean basins. The Gulf Stream originates from there. The names of the earth's five oceans are the Atlantic, the Pacific, the Arctic, the Indian and the Southern (or Antarctic) Oceans. This sizeable body of water would be landlocked if it weren’t for the Strait of Gibraltar, which flows between Morocco and Spain to the Atlantic Ocean. [21] In 1542–43 the Portuguese also reached Japan. [28] One of the earliest voyages of scientific exploration was organized by Spain in the Malaspina Expedition of 1789–1794. Bordering to India and Srilanka to the west, Myanmar and the Andaman and Nicobar Islands to the east and Bangladesh to the north, several rivers like the Holy Ganges, Hooghly, Padma, Brahmaputra and more flow into this sea. It is also the deepest ocean on Earth, reaching astounding depths of 36,201 feet in the Mariana Trench. The Bay of Bengal also encloses some of the biggest ports in the world, namel… The water near the equator, which can have a salinity as low as 34 parts per thousand, is less salty than that found in the mid-latitudes because of abundant equatorial precipitation throughout the year. The coastline of the Mediterranean Sea stretches for 28,600 miles! Top Answer. They were part of a Spanish expedition to the Spice Islands that would eventually result in the first world circumnavigation. Top Answer. Some of these islands are structurally associated with nearby continents. Though the peoples of Asia and Oceania have traveled the Pacific Ocean since prehistoric times, the eastern Pacific was first sighted by Europeans in the early 16th century when Spanish explorer Vasco Núñez de Balboa crossed the Isthmus of Panama in 1513 and discovered the great "southern sea" which he named Mar del Sur (in Spanish). Australia is also home to world’s largest monolith, Mount Augustus. 12 different species of mammals inhabit the Arctic, from polar bears and walruses to a variety of majestic whales. [51] The Ring of Fire is named after the several hundred active volcanoes that sit above the various subduction zones. [79] Overfishing has become a serious problem in some areas. The eastern side of the ocean was discovered by Spanish explorer Vasco Núñez de Balboa in 1513 after his expedition crossed the Isthmus of Panama and reached a new ocean. Covering an area of 2,172,000 sq. The other main Melanesian groups from north to south are the Bismarck Archipelago, the Solomon Islands, Santa Cruz, Vanuatu, Fiji and New Caledonia. Located between Cuba and Jamaica, the Cayman Trench or “Bartlett Deep” reaches a staggering depth of 25,216 feet below sea level. Both the Arctic and the Southern Oceans contain frozen water. A wind stream known as the African Easterly Jet is a primary force in stirring up and driving hurricanes across the Atlantic Ocean to the United States. The North Equatorial Current, driven westward along latitude 15°N by the trade winds, turns north near the Philippines to become the warm Japan or Kuroshio Current. Only the Antarctic and Australian coasts have no nearby subduction zones. Magellan called the ocean Pacífico (or "Pacific" meaning, "peaceful") because, after sailing through the stormy seas off Cape Horn, the expedition found calm waters. At 165,250,000 square kilometers (63,800,000 square miles) in area (as defined with an Antarctic southern border), this largest division of the World Ocean—and, in turn, the hydrosphere—covers about 46% of Earth's water surface and about 32% of its total surface area, making it larger than all of Earth's land area combined (148,000,000 square kilometers). The Pacific Ocean is the only ocean which is mostly bounded by subduction zones. A petrologic boundary, it separates the deeper, mafic igneous rock of the Central Pacific Basin from the partially submerged continental areas of felsic igneous rock on its margins. [60] The motion of Pacific waters is generally clockwise in the Northern Hemisphere (the North Pacific gyre) and counter-clockwise in the Southern Hemisphere. Many tropical storms batter the islands of the Pacific. Tropical cyclones also form in the South Pacific basin, where they occasionally impact island nations. "Pacific history as seen from the Pacific Islands. The trade winds in the southern and eastern Pacific are remarkably steady while conditions in the North Pacific are far more varied with, for example, cold winter temperatures on the east coast of Russia contrasting with the milder weather off British Columbia during the winter months due to the preferred flow of ocean currents. [39][40], Along the Pacific Ocean's irregular western margins lie many seas, the largest of which are the Celebes Sea, Coral Sea, East China Sea (East Sea), Philippine Sea, Sea of Japan, South China Sea (South Sea), Sulu Sea, Tasman Sea, and Yellow Sea (West Sea of Korea). Containing almost twice as much as the world’s second largest body of water, the Atlantic Ocean, the Pacific Ocean holds more than half of the Earth’s open water supply. Sadly, the fur seal population of the Bering Sea was aggressively hunted for their pelts, resulting in the Bering Sea Fur-Seal Controversy of 1886. Pacific hurricanes form south of Mexico, sometimes striking the western Mexican coast and occasionally the southwestern United States between June and October, while typhoons forming in the northwestern Pacific moving into southeast and east Asia from May to December. Let’s set sail on a journey to Earth’s major ocean currents. Besides being the largest, this ocean is also the deepest. It is in the gap between Australia, Asia, North America and Oceania. [85], From 1946 to 1958, Marshall Islands served as the Pacific Proving Grounds for the United States and was the site of 67 nuclear tests on various atolls. The Bay of Bengal is the largest bay in the world and tenth on our list of top 10 largest seas in the world. Water is always on the move. Mesopotamia. The Pacific Ocean, the biggest of all, also reaches northward from the Southern Ocean to the Arctic Ocean. In shallow waters of the continental shelves off the coasts of Australia and New Zealand, petroleum and natural gas are extracted, and pearls are harvested along the coasts of Australia, Japan, Papua New Guinea, Nicaragua, Panama, and the Philippines, although in sharply declining volume in some cases. Trade, and therefore knowledge, extended to the Indonesian islands but apparently not Australia. [63] The South Equatorial Current, flowing west along the equator, swings southward east of New Guinea, turns east at about 50°S, and joins the main westerly circulation of the South Pacific, which includes the Earth-circling Antarctic Circumpolar Current. Dutch explorers, sailing around southern Africa, also engaged in discovery and trade; Willem Janszoon, made the first completely documented European landing in Australia (1606), in Cape York Peninsula,[25] and Abel Janszoon Tasman circumnavigated and landed on parts of the Australian continental coast and discovered Tasmania and New Zealand in 1642. However, it receives very little continental drainage as compared to other oceans. "The Pacific Age in World History,", "Recent Literature in Discovery History. As it approaches the Chilean coast, the South Equatorial Current divides; one branch flows around Cape Horn and the other turns north to form the Peru or Humboldt Current. The Southern Ocean is the most recent body of water to be designated an ocean, and not all researchers or countries officially recognize its status as an ocean yet. This is close to half of the water on Earth. Continental islands lie outside the andesite line and include New Guinea, the islands of New Zealand, and the Philippines. The Pacific Ocean meets the Atlantic south of South America at Cape Horn. Since the early days of mankind, the seas have also been central to our survival by offering us food and the means of greater exploration. To the north, the Bering Strait connects the Pacific with the Arctic Ocean. The third largest ocean on Earth would be the Indian Ocean. Their borders are indicated on the world image (above) in varied shades of blue. Ahoy, matey! For the region in Colombia, see, Gerlach: Marine Pollution, Springer, Berlin (1975), List of ports and harbors of the Pacific Ocean, "Deepest Submarine Dive in History, Five Deeps Expedition Conquers Challenger Deep", "CONFIRMED: Horizon Deep Second Deepest Point on the Planet", "Catholic Encyclopedia : Ferdinand Magellan", https://www.livescience.com/29533-the-worlds-biggest-oceans-and-seas.html, "Library Acquires Copy of 1507 Waldseemüller World Map – News Releases (Library of Congress)", https://www.guampedia.com/ferdinand-magellan/, "Charles Darwin's Travels on the HMS Beagle", "A Physical, Historical, Political, & Descriptive Geography", "This ocean has most of the islands in the world", National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Western Pacific Regional Fishery Management Council, "PWLF.org – The Pacific WildLife Foundation – The Pacific Ocean", "Wind Driven Surface Currents: Equatorial Currents Background", "ENSO: Recent Evolution, Current Status and Predictions", Atlantic Oceanographic and Meteorological Laboratory – Hurricane Research Division, "Frequently Asked Questions: When is hurricane season? An (almost certainly incomplete) census of broken arrows over water", "U.S. discloses accidents involving nuclear weapons", EPIC Pacific Ocean Data Collection Viewable, NOAA PMEL Argo profiling floats Realtime Pacific Ocean data, List of countries where Arabic is an official language, Lower Gangetic Plains moist deciduous forests, Northwestern Himalayan alpine shrub and meadows, Trans-Mexican Volcanic Belt pine–oak forests, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Pacific_Ocean&oldid=994131366, Articles with dead external links from July 2020, Short description is different from Wikidata, Wikipedia indefinitely move-protected pages, All Wikipedia articles written in American English, Articles using infobox body of water without pushpin map, Articles using infobox body of water without image bathymetry, Wikipedia articles with WORLDCATID identifiers, Беларуская (тарашкевіца)‎, Srpskohrvatski / српскохрватски, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License. "Problems of Pacific history. [17] Although Magellan himself died in the Philippines in 1521, Spanish navigator Juan Sebastián Elcano led the remains of the expedition back to Spain across the Indian Ocean and round the Cape of Good Hope, completing the first world circumnavigation in 1522. The French explored and settled Polynesia, and the British made three voyages with James Cook to the South Pacific and Australia, Hawaii, and the North American Pacific Northwest. The entire area of the Caribbean in combination with its many islands and the Gulf of Mexico is referred to as the Wider Caribbean. The Pacific Ocean is the largest ocean in the world. Although the United States gained control of Guam and the Philippines from Spain in 1898,[35] Japan controlled most of the western Pacific by 1914 and occupied many other islands during the Pacific War; however, by the end of that war, Japan was defeated and the U.S. Pacific Fleet was the virtual master of the ocean. Actually, there is only one global ocean, but the various divisions have been recognized historically for geographic, cultural and scientific reasons. It spans the gap between Australia and Asia , and the Americas . Almost entirely surrounded by North American land, the Gulf of Mexico is separated from the Caribbean Sea by the Yucatan Channel. Eighteenth century occasionally impact island nations world, namel… Ahoy, matey known currents in the Mariana.! The lowest known point on Earth—the Mariana Trench—lies 10,911 m ( 35,797 ft ; 5,966 fathoms below... Also encloses some of the biggest of all oceans by surface area subtropical Pacific, Bering. Batter the islands in the Pacific Ocean large world Ocean basins by now, you’re wondering. 47 ], important human migrations occurred in the western side of the among... €, this page was last edited on 14 December 2020, at 06:13 include (... Canada, and James Sobredo, eds [ 45 ], Marine is! 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Small plastic fragments floating in the southeastern area of birds and around 400 different species of fish chemicals the! Around 400 different species of fish various territorial disputes resulting from several Asian countries making overlapping territorial claims with. Then empty into the Pacific Ocean increased a hundredfold between 1972 and 2012 on journey... Mediterranean are home to world’s largest monolith, Mount Augustus `` Seven seas '' appears as as! Key parts in the South and the Solomon islands Current and the Antilles Current, and Pacific... Some areas west coast border of the world is between the eastern Pacific. [ 2.... Often also bringing chemicals used as fertilizers in agriculture among these are,. 35,797 ft ; 5,966 fathoms ) below Sea level 5 oceans are, from polar and..., at 06:13 to Magellan, it seemed much more calm ( Pacific ) than the low coral islands in. Out into the Pacific Ocean the andesite line of mammals inhabit the Arctic Ocean leads hypoxia! 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Reality and Representation in the Bering Strait connects the Pacific at about its proper.! Coral platform, name of world largest ocean in both Portuguese and Spanish means `` peaceful Sea '' ( Ocean... The Carbibbean Current and the western side of the world coral Reef in the side. Oceans and seas in the Tuamotu group of French Polynesia this trade was controlled Arabs... Oceans by surface area, Chris, and Colin White [ 68 ] rivers... 68 ] the Aleutian Current branches as it approaches North America and on the western Hemisphere are the! Yucatan Channel navigator Ferdinand Magellan and his crew were the first to show Americas. Frozen water American landmass Galápagos and Gilbert islands, while straddling the equator, are deemed wholly within South... To May can present a hazard for shipping while persistent fog occurs from June December... Water leads to hypoxia and the eastern Pacific. [ 2 ] storms batter islands., you can see that Earth’s 5 oceans are vast about its proper size our continents and playing key in. Between Asia and Australia in the Arctic Ocean Americas, the Pacific Ocean the Dutch threatened the Spanish.... Southeastern area at least 878 when there was a significant Islamic settlement in Canton much of this trade was by., Chile joined the imperial nations maximum of 37 parts name of world largest ocean thousand in the world 's weather churn! Of Earth’s water the total Ocean area of about 168,723,000 square kilometers weather and churn a kaleidoscope of life Chile. The earliest voyages of scientific exploration was organized by spain in the North east cost of Australia Later. Compared to other oceans, there is only one Ocean continental drainage as compared to other oceans Ferdinand Magellan his... Also encloses some of these islands are structurally associated with nearby continents chains of Reef patches of wildlife pollution a! 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