Undersea mountains stir up currents critical to Earth’s climate

Now, results from a campaign by the RRS Discovery, a U.K. research ship, seem to confirm a radical new view for how deep-ocean water rises. Its measurements of tracers rising above rough seafloor topography suggest that deep water does not well up slowly across most of the ocean, as once thought. Instead, it is shunted upward in concentrated bursts by turbulence created by undersea mountains, including volcanic midocean ridges and seamounts.

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