The Atlantic Ocean keeps plenty of secrets. Navigators and scientists have been exploring it for centuries but still haven't found answers to many questions.
Did Atlantis exist? Why do ships and airplanes disappear in the area of the Bermuda Islands? These questions are pending till now.
Here you can find the most interesting peculiarities of the Atlantic ocean.
The Atlantic is the saltiest ocean, its average salinity is 35‰. It's the second biggest ocean after the Pacific ocean and it passes through all climate zones.
Where does the modern name come?
Centuries ago the Atlantic ocean didn't carry any permanent name, it was called the Western ocean, the Sea of Shadows, the Sea beyond the Pillars of Hercules. The modern name was given to the ocean by the German cartographer Waldseemüller after Atlas of Greek mythology who held up the sky.
As it´s well-known, the first navigator to cross the Atlantic ocean was Christopher Columbus. Since then the Atlantic is considered to be the border between the New and Old Worlds. Many travelers followed Columbus searching and exploring the new lands and communication between the continents was established soon.
Now transatlantic flights are casual, but can you imagine how brave the aviators were who first ventured to cross the Atlantic ocean. The heroes of the event were John Alcock and Arthur Brown, who in 1919 piloted the first non-stop transatlantic flight from Newfoundland to Clifden 3168 meters long. Afterwards they were knighted and rewarded with the Order of the British Empire.
- Atlantis – fiction or reality?
There are many theories about the ancient civilization that according the legend was situated on the territory of the Atlantic. The Atlantis submerged into the ocean and during many centuries travelers have been searching for the disappeared civilization.
- the Bermudas
One of the mysteries of the Atlantic ocean is born in the Bermuda Triangle, the "Sea of the Evil", where water- and aircrafts disappear without a reason. People are searching to explain it. Some believe in aliens hijacking the vessels, some in special natural conditions. Anyway it's true that in this region is difficult for navigation, there are storms and cyclones arising often from here.
- In the North of the Atlantic ocean there is a giant island – Greenland, the biggest island in the world. The farthest island is also in the Atlantic – Bouvet that is situated in 1600 km from the Cape of Good Hope.
- Sea without coastline
In the Atlantic ocean there is a very unusual sea – Sargasso. It's the only sea that has no coast and is confined by the ocean currents: Gulf Stream, North Atlantic, Canary and North Atlantic Equatorial currents. In this relatively motionless water there are perfect conditions for growth of algae, as a result almost the whole sea is covered with Sargassum algae.
- the Great Blue Hole
Another peculiarity of the Atlantic ocean is the Great Blue Hole off the coast of Belize, that is a big circular in shape hole in the sea going down to 120 meters. It's named the Blue Hole due to the sharp border between the dark and light water. It was formed supposedly in the Ice Age when the sea level was 100-120 meters lower.
The famous French diver Jacques Cousteau declared The Great Blue Hole one of the top ten scuba diving places in the world. But visiting this area could be dangerous. Sometimes during the high tides whirlpools arise sucking down everything floating on the surface. During the low tides water fountains erupt from inside. But in spite of danger and distant position (96 km from the Belize city) divers explored the site and now the Great Blue Hole is a popular dive place.
- Gulf Stream
For sure Gulf Stream is widely-known in Europe, as this current defines the climate of all European countries with the exit to the ocean. Gulf Stream gives warmth and mild climate to the whole coast. It's even called the biggest "heating system" in the world.