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Greenland Sea: Wikis


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The Greenland Sea
Map of the Greenland Sea
Mean depth: 1,450 m (4,800 ft)
Maximum depth: 5,600 m (18,000 ft)
Area of surface: 1,205,000 square kilometres (465,000 sq mi)
Volume: 1,747,250 cubic kilometres (419,190 cu mi)
Water salinity:

The Greenland Sea is the northernmost part of the North Atlantic Ocean immediately south of the Arctic Ocean. It encompasses some 1,205,000 square km (465,000 square miles). The average depth of the Greenland Sea is close to 1,450 m (4,750 ft). The deepest recorded point of 5600m[1] has been found at Molloy Deep, in the Fram Strait between northeastern Greenland and Svalbard.[2]



Greenland Sea is bounded to the west by the island of Greenland, and to the south by the Denmark Strait and Iceland. To the southeast, behind the Jan Mayen island lies the vast expanse of the Norwegian Sea, of which Greenland Sea may be considered an extension. Across Fram Strait to the northeast the sea is delimited by the Svalbard archipelago.



The International Hydrographic Organization defines the limits of the Greenland Sea as follows:[3]

On the North. A line joining the Northernmost point of Spitzbergen [sic] [Svalbard] to the Northernmost point of Greenland.

On the East. The West coast of West Spitzbergen [sic] [island of Spitsbergen].

On the Southeast. A line joining the Southernmost point of West Spitzbergen [sic] to the Northern point of Jan Mayen Island, down the West coast of that island to its Southern extreme, thence a Line to the Eastern extreme of Gerpir (67°05′N 13°30′W / 67.083°N 13.5°W / 67.083; -13.5) in Iceland.

On the Southwest. A line joining Straumness (NW extreme of Iceland) to Cape Nansen (68°15′N 29°30′W / 68.25°N 29.5°W / 68.25; -29.5) in Greenland.

On the West. The East and Northeast coast of Greenland between Cape Nansen and the northernmost point.

Ocean currents

This arm of the Arctic Ocean is the ocean's main outlet to the Atlantic[2]. The progressively colder waters of North Atlantic Current sink in the Arctic Ocean, returning south in the form of cold East Greenland Current, an important part of the Atlantic conveyor belt. Due to drifting Arctic ice, the northern part is rarely open to navigation.


The Greenland Sea is densely inhabited by the organisms that form the base of the oceanic food chain. Large invertebrates, fish (such as cod, herring, redfish, halibut, and plaice), birds and mammals (including seals, whales, and dolphins) all feed on the smaller invertebrates and small organisms.


See also


Coordinates: 76°N 8°W / 76°N 8°W / 76; -8


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