Ocean

An ocean is a large body of water on a planet, larger than a sea. Many oceans, such as those on Earth, contain salt water. Often where the water meets the shore, beaches can be found.

The seas of Earth are blue in color, whereas the seas of Bajor are green and the seas of Trill are purple. (DS9: "Past Tense, Part I")

The planet Argo is known as an "ocean-planet", as its surface was almost entirely covered by water. (TAS: "The Ambergris Element")

Around 100,000 years ago, an unknown species in the Delta Quadrant used a kinetic transfer system to move the oceans of a planet into space, creating what the Moneans call the Waters. (VOY: "Thirty Days")

In 2024, preparations were being made for seafloor mining operation in the territory of the Pan-Caribbean government. (DS9: "Past Tense, Part II")

In the Julian Bashir, Secret Agent holoprogram, Hippocrates Noah's plan for world domination involves releasing "millions of tons" of lava, that would cause Earth's tectonic plates to subside. This would result in the planet's continents to be flooded by the oceans, save for his own personal refuge atop Mount Everest. (DS9: "Our Man Bashir")

In 2374, a Jem'Hadar fighter commanded by Benjamin Sisko crashed into the sea of a planet in Cardassian space. (DS9: "Rocks and Shoals") An ocean (from Ancient Greek Ὠκεανὸς (Okeanos); the World Ocean of classical antiquity[1]) is a body of saline water that composes a large part of a planet's hydrosphere.[2] In the context of Earth, it refers to one or all of the major divisions of the planet's World Ocean – they are, in descending order of area, the Pacific, Atlantic, Indian, Southern (Antarctic), and Arctic Oceans.[3][4] The word "sea" is often used interchangeably with "ocean", but strictly speaking a sea is a body of saline water (possibly a division of the World Ocean) partly or fully enclosed by land.[5]

Earth is the only planet known to have an ocean (or any large amounts of open liquid water). Approximately 72% of the planet's surface (~3.6x108 km2) is covered by saline water that is customarily divided into several principal oceans and smaller seas, with the ocean covering approximately 71% of the Earth's surface.[6] In terms of the hydrosphere of the Earth, the ocean contains 97% of the Earth's water. Oceanographers have stated that out of 97%, only 5% of the ocean as a whole on Earth has been explored.[6] Because it is the principal component of Earth's hydrosphere, the world ocean is integral to all known life, forms part of the carbon cycle, and influences climate and weather patterns. The total volume is approximately 1.3 billion cubic kilometres (310 million cu mi)[7] with an average depth of 3,682 metres (12,080 ft).[8] It is the habitat of 230,000 known species, although much of the ocean's depths remain unexplored and it is estimated that over two million marine species exist.[9] The origin of Earth's oceans is still unknown, but oceans are believed to have formed in the Hadean period and may have been the impetus for the emergence of life.

Extraterrestrial oceans may be composed of a wide range of elements and compounds. The only confirmed large stable bodies of extraterrestrial surface liquids are the lakes of Titan, although there is evidence for the existence of oceans elsewhere in the Solar System. Early in their geologic histories, Mars and Venus are theorized to have had large water oceans. The Mars ocean hypothesis suggests that nearly a third of the surface of Mars was once covered by water, though the water on Mars is no longer oceanic, and a runaway greenhouse effect may have boiled away the global ocean of Venus. Compounds such as salts and ammonia dissolved in water lower its freezing point, so that water might exist in large quantities in extraterrestrial environments as brine or convecting ice. Unconfirmed oceans are speculated beneath the surface of many dwarf planets and natural satellites; notably, the ocean of Europa is believed to have over twice the water volume of Earth. The Solar System's gas giant planets are also believed to possess liquid atmospheric layers of yet to be confirmed compositions. Oceans may also exist on exoplanets and exomoons, including surface oceans of liquid water within a circumstellar habitable zone. Ocean planets are a hypothetical type of planet with a surface completely covered with liquid.

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