Ocean sciences

Definition

Ocean sciences span the physics, chemistry, and biology of marine systems. The field encompasses ocean circulation, energy dissipation, marine biology, ecology, biogeochemical cycles, water mass formation and movement, ocean temperature and salinity, and marine carbon and carbonate chemistry.

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Latest Research and Reviews

News and Comment

  • Comments and Opinion |

    The exploration of ocean worlds in the outer Solar System offers the opportunity to search for an independent origin of life, and also to advance our capabilities for exploring and understanding life in Earth’s oceans.

    • Kevin Peter Hand
    •  & Christopher R. German
  • News and Views |

    Stable layering in the ocean limits the rate that human-derived carbon dioxide can acidify the deep ocean. Now observations show that ocean warming, however, can enhance deep-ocean acidification through increased organic matter decomposition.

    • Christopher L. Sabine
  • News and Views |

    Microbial activity in the sea results in a loss of bioavailable nitrogen. It emerges that the climate phenomenon called the El Niño–Southern Oscillation has a surprisingly large effect on the size of this loss.

    • Katja Fennel
    Nature 551, 305–306
  • News and Views |

    Circulation of the ocean's densest waters modulates millennial-scale shifts in climate. Contrary to conventional wisdom, a study finds that the shape of the sea floor constrains where these waters rise towards the surface. See Article p.181

    • Andrew L. Stewart
    Nature 551, 178–179