Benguela Current

The frigid waters of the north-flowing Benguela current move from the western coast of South Africa, Namibia and Angola towards north and northwest up to the line where it joins the southern equatorial current which is already a warm current. Its waters are cold because there are very deep waters that were brought upward due to the rotation of Earth from west to east. This upward movement of deep waters are sometimes increased by planetary winds from east to west (southern Trade winds) which blow west from the Kalahari Desert towards the ocean. Obviously, this wind creates a displacement of top ocean waters from the African coast to the west deviating to the northwest (to the left) because of the Coriolis Effect and this displacement causes deep waters to move upwards to replace coastal waters moving west.

Boundaries

The Benguela current forms the eastern boundary of the South Atlantic subtropical gyre. Its sources include Indian and South Atlantic subtropical thermocline water; saline, low-oxygen tropical Atlantic water; and cooler, fresher deep water. The Benguela current is 2-300 km wide and widens further as it flows north and northwest. Its western, seaward edge is ill-defined, with many temporary and seasonal eddies.

Effect

Where the icy Benguela and the warm, south-flowing Agulhas current mix, there is a richly productive marine ecosystem off the Cape of Good Hope but storms and turbulence above.

The cold current creates the desert conditions of the shore of Namibia, and the persistent fogs of the Skeleton Coast and Namib Desert. A Benguela El Niño effect has been detected, less intense and less frequent than the Pacific Ocean phenomenon.

External links

* [http://oceancurrents.rsmas.miami.edu/atlantic/benguela.html Benguela current]


Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Benguela Current — [ben gā′lə] n. [after Benguela, city in W Angola] a strong ocean current in the South Atlantic, flowing northward along the SW coast of Africa …   English World dictionary

  • Benguela Current — a cold ocean current flowing N along the W coast of southern Africa. * * * ▪ ocean current       oceanic current that is a branch of the West Wind Drift (Antarctic Circumpolar Current) of the Southern Hemisphere. It flows northward in the South… …   Universalium

  • Benguela Current — noun A cold ocean current originating in the Southern Ocean surrounding Antarctica, thence flowing northwards up the west coast of Africa as far as Angola. It provides nutrients for the sea life in the fishing grounds off the Cape of Good Hope …   Wiktionary

  • Benguela Current — a cold ocean current flowing N along the W coast of southern Africa …   Useful english dictionary

  • Benguela (disambiguation) — Benguela may refer to: * Benguela, a city * Benguela (province) * Benguela railway * Benguela Current …   Wikipedia

  • Benguela railway — The Benguela railway is operated by the Caminho de Ferro de Benguela (CFB) that connects the Atlantic port of Lobito, Angola, to the eastern bordertown of Luau and to the rail networks of south eastern DR Congo, of Zambia and beyond.OperationThe… …   Wikipedia

  • ocean current — Horizontal and vertical circulation system of ocean waters, produced by gravity, wind friction, and water density variation. Coriolis forces cause ocean currents to move clockwise in the Northern Hemisphere and counterclockwise in the Southern… …   Universalium

  • Guinea Current — The Guinea Current is a slow warm water current that flows easterly along the Guinea coast of West Africa.Socrates, who lived from about 470 399 BC, was the first to incorrectly suggest that the ocean currents, varying sea water temperatures, and …   Wikipedia

  • Leeuwin Current — is a warm ocean current which flows southwards near the western coast of Australia. It rounds Cape Leeuwin to enter the waters south of Australia where its influence extends as far as Tasmania. The West Australian Current and Southern Australian… …   Wikipedia

  • Equatorial Current — 1. See North Equatorial Current. 2. See South Equatorial Current. * * * ▪ oceanography       ocean current flowing westward near the equator, predominantly controlled by the winds. Characteristically, equatorial current systems consist of two… …   Universalium


Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.