Underwater territory or underwater is simply that area or region typically found below the surface of water commonly referred to as a body of water such as in the case of a river, lake, pond, sea or the ocean.
It has been estimated that more than 70 percent of the Earth’s surface is covered by water with a majority of the solid surface of the planet or abyssal plain found at a known depth of between 13,100 and 18,000 feet below the ocean surface. The deepest point of which is found within the Earth’s seabed hydrosphere and known as the Challenger Deep, located in the Mariana Trench at a depth of 35,755 to 35,814 feet when measured from a number of submersible vehicles.
In spite of the fact that mankind for centuries has been known for conducting a vast number of underwater activities such as deep sea scientific research, sports including scuba diving, underwater fishing activities, as well as underwater warfare via the use of submarines, this vast and extensive habitat can be a severely treacherous domain to humans, and as such has rarely been explored.
Nonetheless humans have been able investigate the ocean depths by employing a technique known as sonar which utilizes the propagation of sound waves to communicate with or detect objects on top or below the surface of the water in addition to exploring underwater by direct means including autonomous or manned submersibles. This process has enabled scientists to study the planet’s underwater surface and effectively create a basic and rough resolution; subsequently mapping strategic areas in detail for specifically providing assistance to allied submarines in addition to detecting unfriendly submersible warships.
Facts about Underwater
- Often referred as the deep sea, the deep layer is recognized as the lowest existing layer within the ocean, occurring below the thin and distinct thermocline layer and above the ocean floor usually at a known depth of about 1800 meters. Due to the almost non-existent light penetrating this area of the ocean, the organisms typically found there are known for acquiring their source of food from sinking organic matter produced within the sunlight zone exposed to an adequate amount of sunlight allowing photosynthesis to occur. Scientists for this reason have theorized that life sustained within the depths of the ocean would be limited, however almost every probe sent in observation has on the contrary confirmed that the ocean depth is filled with an abundance of life.
- As the depth of the water increases so does its density. At its surface, the atmospheric pressure of water is 14.7 pounds per square inch. Comparably the water pressure occurring at a known depth of 10 meters or 33 feet (9.8 meters or 32 feet for sea water). To put it simply, at a depth of 10 meters below the surface, the water will exert twice the pressure on the human body than air at the surface level.
- Respective to muscle tissue and bone structure, pressure exerted below the ocean surface is not considered as much of a problem, however for other areas of the body such as the lungs, paranasal sinuses, ears and mouth known for consisting of air-filled spaces; when exposed to pressure underwater these areas will experience a reduction in their air volume resulting in the inability to provide adequate support from greater outside pressure.
- At a depth of 8 feet underwater, the inability to regularize the air pressure contained within the portion of the ear internal to the eardrum and external to the oval window of the inner ear or middle ear as the water pressure increases can result in severe pain and possible rupture of the eardrum.
- In fact, the danger of experiencing pressure damage is often seen as much greater when in shallow water, due to the excessive change in the rate of pressure known for occurring mostly near the water surface.
- As the depth of the water increases, more sunlight is absorbed, resulting in a decrease in the amount of light reflected and visible to the human eye. Theoretically light absorption is known to increase for longer wavelengths than for shorter wavelengths thus rapidly altering the color spectrum with increasing depth. This principle gives an account for objects at the surface of the water appearing bluish in color while objects red in color and found further below the surface often appearing dark or black in color.
- Turbid water is known for allowing less light to penetrate its surface and as such less than 25 percent of light is known reaching a depth of 33 feet in the clear water of the ocean. Of note, at a death of 330 feet the amount of light visible is less than 0.5 percent of that seen on the surface.
- The ability of water to conduct heat is observed at twenty-five times more efficient relative to air. Hypothermia a condition which occurs when the human body’s core temperature falls below the required 35 degrees celsius to effect normal metabolism and support bodily functions can often become fatal to humans, customarily requiring insulation of the body’s warmth with exposure and diving suits whenever exploring in water of a known temperature of less than 25 degrees celsius.
The Monterey Bay Aquarium Kelp Forest Feeding Webcam
The Monterey Bay Aquarium Monterey, California is a non-profit organization inspiring conservation of the oceans.
Their underwater Kelp feeding exhibit webcam powered by UStream Networks features a diversity of fish and invertebrates, and sharks being hand-feed by their divers shown in the link posted below.
The Busselton Jetty Underwater Observatory Webcam
The Busselton Jetty Underwater Observatory in Australia allows visitors to experience one of Australia’s extraordinary artificially made reefs by boarding their Jetty train and descending 8 metros to the ocean floor.
The facility via two installed live webcams (North and South cam) features an awe inspiring underwater forest filled with vividly colored tropical corals, invertebrates, fish, and sponges constituting for the amount of over 300 different marine species living below the jetty.