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The movement of water around, over, and through the Earth is called the water cycle, a key process of the hydrosphere.

A hydrosphere (from Greek ὕδωρ - hydor, "water" and σφαῖρα - sphaira, "sphere") in physical geography describes the combined mass of water found on, under, and over the surface of a planet.

The total mass of the Earth's hydrosphere is about 1.4 × 1018 tonnes, which is about 0.023% of the Earth's total mass. About 20 × 1012 tonnes of this is in the Earth's atmosphere (the volume of one tonne of water is approximately 1 cubic metre). Approximately 71% of the Earth's surface, an area of some 361 million square kilometres (139.5 million square miles), is covered by ocean. The average salinity of the Earth's oceans is about 35 grams of salt per kilogram of sea water (35 ).[1]

Contents

Other hydrospheres

A thick hydrosphere is thought to exist around the Jovian moon Europa. outer layer of this hydrosphere is almost entirely ice, but current models predict that the cause of tidal flexing of the moon in its orbit around Jupiter. The volume of Europa's hydrosphere is 3 ×&nbsp, 2.3 times that of Earth.

Hydrological cycle

Insolation, or energy (in the form of heat and light) from the sun, provides the energy necessary to cause evaporation from all wet surfaces including oceans, rivers, lakes, soil and the leaves of plants.

See also

References

  1. ^ Kennish, Michael J. (2001). Practical handbook of marine science. Marine science series (3rd ed.). CRC Press. p. 35. ISBN 0849323916. 

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1911 encyclopedia

Up to date as of January 14, 2010
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From LoveToKnow 1911

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