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Old 06-20-2016, 05:13 PM   #1
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How is it that Sea level is not just 1 altitude world wide

So the major oceans are all connected freely.

But not the same level.

I've always wondered how?????

To my tiny brain water is self leveling.

Tip a bucket half full of water and the water is still level.
Dig an uneven hole and fill it with water and the water is level.
So why are oceans not all level?

I used to wander why they built the Panama Canal with locks.
When i was a kid I thought just dig a trench and let boats go back and forth....but the water level isn't level.....so I will ask you smart people who know why.
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Old 06-20-2016, 06:33 PM   #2
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Something like this....?
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Old 06-20-2016, 07:56 PM   #3
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Greetings,
Mr. HN. "So why are oceans not all level?" Well, I could give you an explanation quoting and referencing the juxtaposition of the earth and the moon, jet streams, the Chandler wobble, the Coriolis effects, the diurnal apogee of Jupiter in relation to Saturn and any number of scientific facts and you would be bored to tears. So the really simple reason is beer!

As any spot on the globe approaches afternoon or evening, people start getting off work and head home or to their favorite watering hole to have a cold one. Now, as you're aware, you don't buy beer, you just rent it. This leads to increased...er...flushing. This "wave" of....ahem...waste circles the globe like clockwork and increases the local waste flow sequentially thus creating an offset of the ocean levels.
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Old 06-20-2016, 08:34 PM   #4
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MR. RT-I like your explanation. Really simplifies the science!
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Old 06-21-2016, 02:26 AM   #5
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Reiziger, where is that?! Wow...
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Old 06-21-2016, 02:46 AM   #6
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Reiziger, where is that?! Wow...
Greece, Corinth Canal.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Corinth_Canal
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Old 06-21-2016, 08:18 AM   #7
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The " chumps have been stumped" Doesn't look like the brain trust is coming to your aid this time.
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Old 06-21-2016, 08:30 AM   #8
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The " chumps have been stumped" Doesn't look like the brain trust is coming to your aid this time.
Actually, I think RT Firefly nailed it pretty well. He mentioned some of the actual reasons, and then ended with a more simple, tongue-in-cheek explanation.

If you want a simple explanation without any humor, I guess one way to put it might be... When you combine the rotation of the earth with the gravitational effects of the moon, water tends to "bunch up" in places.

If you really want the detailed, scientific explanation it will take many, many pages, lots of mathematics, and a fairly deep dive into physics. Somehow I don't think that's what the OP was looking for.
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Old 06-21-2016, 09:25 AM   #9
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Hurry,
A significant fraction of the answer to your question is that the temperature and hence the density of the ocean's water column varies widely across the planet. Change the temperature of 1000 feet of water and the surface elevation wil go up or down with the same mass of water.

The real question is: what is the difference in the height of the metric/Centigrade water in BC vs. the inch/Farenheit water in the lower 48?
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Old 06-21-2016, 10:16 AM   #10
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The reason the Panama Canal has locks is that there is a lake in the middle, and that lake is at higher elevation than either sea. If canal went straight through, probably one lock would be needed to prevent rapid current flow. Or keep critters on their respective sides.
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Old 06-21-2016, 10:34 AM   #11
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Thank you for that info on the Corinth Canal!
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Old 06-21-2016, 10:40 AM   #12
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...you can add air pressure, water temperature, wind, a less than round Earth, differing gravitational effects due to crust thickness/density, the moon...it'd be a loooong list!
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Old 06-21-2016, 10:52 AM   #13
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I was listening to a BBC show just a few days ago where they were talking about mapping the bottoms of oceans. Apparently there has been a lot of progress made in the last couple of years by taking very accurate measurement by satellite of local variations in sea height and identifying peaks and valleys underwater through those measurements. Interesting stuff, previously unmeasurable.
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Old 06-21-2016, 11:10 AM   #14
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Greetings,
Mr. MM. "...it'd be a loooong list!" Hence, the

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Old 06-21-2016, 11:36 AM   #15
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Greetings,
Mr. HN. "So why are oceans not all level?" Well, I could give you an explanation quoting and referencing the juxtaposition of the earth and the moon, jet streams, the Chandler wobble, the Coriolis effects, the diurnal apogee of Jupiter in relation to Saturn and any number of scientific facts and you would be bored to tears. So the really simple reason is beer!

As any spot on the globe approaches afternoon or evening, people start getting off work and head home or to their favorite watering hole to have a cold one. Now, as you're aware, you don't buy beer, you just rent it. This leads to increased...er...flushing. This "wave" of....ahem...waste circles the globe like clockwork and increases the local waste flow sequentially thus creating an offset of the ocean levels.

That made me laugh thanks man

Now if only i drank beer....or any alcohol at all....i don't drink anything but water, coffee, milk, and orange juice though lol
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Old 06-21-2016, 11:53 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by denverd0n View Post
Actually, I think RT Firefly nailed it pretty well. He mentioned some of the actual reasons, and then ended with a more simple, tongue-in-cheek explanation.

If you want a simple explanation without any humor, I guess one way to put it might be... When you combine the rotation of the earth with the gravitational effects of the moon, water tends to "bunch up" in places.

If you really want the detailed, scientific explanation it will take many, many pages, lots of mathematics, and a fairly deep dive into physics. Somehow I don't think that's what the OP was looking for.
So basically its like a Terri Clark song.
The earth is a little too wound up....

I'm in agreement people and the planetare too wound up and too darn serious about many things that really don't matter.

At work I am serious and in my off time i laugh lots and love adventure.

Maybe one day i will have a drink again...i used to drink but haven't had a drop in 24 years my birth parents were alcoholics, and not funny haha ones. So it turned me off drinking.
Where the people i actually consider my parents don't drink and are super cool.

But gravity and earth spinning etc I just didn't realize would cause that big of changes.
Us dumb pilots refer to altitude as above Sea level....but that got me thinking then. ... Okay above what sea are we measuring this altitude from?

https://www.google.ca/url?sa=t&sourc...mTGwtrjTep_T0Q
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Old 06-21-2016, 12:56 PM   #17
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The largest effect is the tidal pull of the Moon. The land masses don’t allow smooth flow of the oceans so there are many complex currents which are in turn affected by the Coriolis force. The oceans are also affected by the temperature and pressure of the atmosphere which gets its energy from the sun and Earth’s surface. The whole thing is very complex but is really surprisingly small. The deviation of the ocean surface from a perfect sphere is about one part in a million! If you look carefully at your bucket of water is it really level to one part in a million, or about .00001 inch?

I also like the beer explanation.

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Old 06-21-2016, 02:34 PM   #18
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Thanks for the laughs and the info everyone.

Apparently there is no super easy single reason....its many forces in eceect.

I have wondered is all.

My Dads funny answer made me laugh.
"Because God wants you to be able to boat downhill sometimes for a burst of speed " lol

My Dad always has a funny story about how God does things.
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