Q:

Does salt affect water evaporation?

A:

Quick Answer

Salt does not directly affect the evaporation of water. However, the evaporation habits, temperatures and movement of certain areas of saltwater bodies can affect the salinity, or salt level, of those bodies of water, resulting in changes in evaporation and precipitation. Higher levels of evaporation and lower levels of precipitation result in higher concentrations of salt in bodies of water, while lower levels of evaporation and higher levels of precipitation result in lower concentrations of salt in bodies of water.

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Full Answer

NASA's website shows that the cycles of evaporation and precipitation can affect the salinity of bodies of water. In areas where high concentrations of salt water have been found, those areas have shown lower amounts of precipitation and higher levels of evaporation.

However, there can be some correlation between salinity and ocean patterns. The increase in global temperature can cause upper levels of water to fall to lower depths. Since the majority of warmth is stored in the uppermost levels of the ocean, this change in water levels can cause a change in salinity, thereby altering the patterns, currents and movements of ocean water. All of these factors play a role in determining the levels of evaporation, precipitation and other water cycle processes.

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