Southern Ocean, also known as the Great Southern Ocean, the Antarctic Ocean and the South Polar Ocean and is regarded as the fourth-largest of the five principal oceans. It is the body of water encircling the continent of Antarctica.
Ten Facts about Southern Ocean
- Southern Ocean is a source of cold, dense water that is an essential driving force in the circulation of the world's oceans.
- Southern Ocean is notorious for having some of the strongest winds and largest waves on the planet.
- Southern Ocean island still remains largely untouched by man.
- The Southern Ocean, geologically the youngest of the oceans, formed when Antarctica and South America moved apart, opening the Drake Passage, roughly 30 million years ago.
- Southern Ocean is one of the few areas of the world's oceans where surface waters are dense enough to sink into the deep sea.
- Icebergs can occur at any time of year throughout the Southern ocean.
- Some area of ocean has the strongest average winds found anywhere on Earth.
- Southern Ocean does not abut a landmass, but merges into the Atlantic, Indian and Pacific Oceans.
- Southern ocean zone is where cold, northward flowing waters from the Antarctic mix with warmer sub-Antarctic waters.
- Southern Ocean's greatest depth of 7,236 meters occurs at the southern end of the South Sandwich Trench.