Tides

A:

An ebb tide occurs when a tidal current moves away from land. Tidal currents moving toward land are called floods. Ebbs and floods are categorized as reversing currents.

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  • How Are Sea Waves Formed?

    Q: How Are Sea Waves Formed?

    A: Many factors impact the generation, severity, frequency and strength of ocean waves. One of the most important factors leading to the formation of an ocean wave is the wind. The shapes of the basins of the ocean dictate the ocean's regular movements and also affect waves.
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  • How Long Does High Tide Last?

    Q: How Long Does High Tide Last?

    A: High tides are part of a cycle of rising or receding water that lasts for approximately 6 hours and 13 minutes. Low tides last for the same amount of time.
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  • What Are Lunar Tides?

    Q: What Are Lunar Tides?

    A: According to Science and the Sea, lunar tides are the most common tides and are caused by the Moon's gravity. Although the Sun's gravity is stronger, it is farther from the Earth than the Moon, which is why lunar tides are more than two times stronger than solar tides.
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  • How Often Do Tides Occur?

    Q: How Often Do Tides Occur?

    A: Ocean tides are caused by the gravitational pull of the Moon and Sun. Due to the rotation of the Earth, locations will experience two high and two low tides each day. An alignment of the Sun and Moon will result in more extreme tides, known as spring tides.
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  • When Is the Daily Tidal Range the Greatest?

    Q: When Is the Daily Tidal Range the Greatest?

    A: The daily tidal range is greatest at the new moon and full moon, when the tidal pulls of the moon and sun are in phase with each other. This phenomenon is called a spring tide and is strongest when it coincides with the vernal or autumnal equinox.
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  • Q: When Does a High Tide Occur?

    A: High tide occurs on the side of the Earth that is opposite of the moon during orbit, while the side of the Earth closest to the moon experiences low tide. The gravitational pull of the Earth and moon causes high and low tide.
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  • Q: How Are Tidal Waves Formed?

    A: Tidal waves are caused by the gravitational fields of the sun, the moon and the earth. A tidal wave is a small, regularly occurring wave caused by the shifting of the tide.
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  • Q: How Does the Moon Affect the Tides?

    A: The moon's gravitational force pulls water towards it, creating a high tide on the surface of the ocean closest to the moon. Also, the centrifugal force created by the Earth and moon orbiting around a central point creates a similar bulge on the opposite side, creating a second high tide.
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  • Q: Is There a Red Tide in Siesta Key, Fla.?

    A: The beaches in Siesta Key, Fla. periodically experience red tide, a condition that occurs when high levels of red-tinted and harmful algae are present in the water. During red tides, the ocean water may display a reddish-brown hue.
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  • Q: What Can You Learn From Tide Tables?

    A: Tide tables can tell you when the water level will be at its highest and lowest at a particular location. Tide tables can also be used to predict the height of water at times between high and low tide.
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  • Q: What Is a Spring Tide?

    A: A spring tide is the tide which occurs at the time of full moon and new moon. The difference between the highest and the lowest rise of tides is highly pronounced during spring tide, and hence it can be easily distinguished.
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  • Why Is the Bottom Layer of the Ocean the Coldest?

    Q: Why Is the Bottom Layer of the Ocean the Coldest?

    A: The bottom layer of the ocean is the coldest because cold water has a higher density than warm water. The colder water sinks to the bottom of the ocean. This movement of water creates the ocean currents.
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  • Q: What Causes Tidal Waves?

    A: Tidal waves are caused by the gravitational pull of the sun and moon on the Earth. The moon's gravitational pull has a greater influence on Earth because it is closer. The moon creates a bulge in the ocean on the side of Earth closest to it.
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  • Q: How Do You Interpret Local Tide Tables?

    A: A local tide table displays the predicted times and heights of high and low tides. The height of the water is relative to a point called Mean Lower Low Water, which is the average height of the lowest tide during the recording period of a tidal station.
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  • What Is the Most Common Tidal Pattern Around the World?

    Q: What Is the Most Common Tidal Pattern Around the World?

    A: The most common tide pattern around the world is that of semi-diurnal tides. This pattern contains two high tides and two low tides of the same height occurring in a 24-hour period. Semi-diurnal tides occur when the moon is over the equator.
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  • Q: What Causes Ocean Tides?

    A: Tides, the periodic rise and fall in the levels of large bodies of water, are the product of gravitational forces. They result from the interaction of the Earth with both the sun and the moon, though the moon is the most significant influence year round.
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  • Q: What Is the Fetch of a Wave?

    A: Fetch is the distance that wind has traveled over open water without encountering an obstruction. In normal circumstances, long fetches create larger, more powerful waves than short fetches.
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  • Q: How Do Waves Work?

    A: When the sun heats the air, it causes the air to become lighter and float upwards. When hot air floats upwards, cooler air rushes in to take its place. The rush of the cool air against the water creates ripples, which eventually turn into waves.
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  • Q: What Is Tidal Energy Used For?

    A: Tidal energy is used to supply power plants with electricity. Tidal energy harnesses the power of water and the ocean in various ways. Very few commercial plants exist as tidal energy is still not widely in use.
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  • Q: Why Are There Tides?

    A: Tides form when the gravitational forces of the moon and sun act on the Earth as it spins around its axis. Tides are the rise and fall of the sea level in reference to land. For example, spring tides are the result of the alignment of the sun, moon and Earth that typically occurs during new and full moons.
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  • Q: Who Invented Tidal Energy?

    A: Tidal energy has been used since the early Middle Ages in Europe; no one person is credited with inventing it. The earliest record of communities using the power of waves to generate energy for paddlewheels dates from the 10th century.
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