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INCOIS Study Explores Indian Ocean Floor Mapping


Scientists at the Indian National Centre for Ocean Information Services (INCOIS) have recently undertaken a study aimed at mapping the Indian Ocean floor. This endeavor seeks to gain deeper insights into ocean currents and dynamics.


Facts for Prelims

Key Highlights of the Study:

Influence of Andaman and Nicobar Islands and Maldives:

  • Significantly influence direction and speed of Indian Ocean currents.
  • Create deep-swirling patterns opposite to surface currents.

Improvements in Ocean Modelling:

  • Previous systems underestimated coastal currents around India.

Incorporating accurate bathymetry data resulted in:

  • Better predictions of upper ocean salinity, temperature, and currents near the coast.
  • Realistic estimation of the East India Coastal Current (EICC) flow at deeper depths (1,000 and 2,000 meters).

East India Coastal Current (EICC):

  • Western boundary current of the Bay of Bengal.
  • Reverses direction twice a year.
  • Flows northeastward along the Indian coast from February to September.
  • Reverses southward along Indian and Sri Lankan coasts from October to January.

Andaman and Nicobar Islands and Maldives Impact:

  • Identification of a boundary current along the Andaman and Nicobar Islands coast at 2,000 meters depth.
  • Understanding Maldives Islands’ influence on the Equatorial Under Current (EUC).

Importance of Accurate Oceanographic Forecasting:

  • Vital for the maritime industry and economic benefits.
  • Crucial for weather, climate, and maritime industry.
  • Improved observations and models essential for precision predictions.

Need for Accurate Bathymetry Data:

  • Essential for incorporating into ocean circulation models.
  • Aids in forecasting for the Indian subcontinent and nearby regions.

-Source: Indian Express

May 2024