HENNING DALHOFF / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY HENNING DALHOFF / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Atlantic Ocean currents, artwork. The currents are the Gulf Stream (red, warm surface water), the North Atlantic Drift (orange, also warm surface water, the north-eastward extension of the Gulf Stream), and the North Atlantic Deep Water (blue, cold deep water). The latter current forms as the waters of the branches of the North Atlantic Drift cool and sink off Norway and Greenland. Together, these currents are the Atlantic part of the global thermohaline circulation that distributes heat round the world's oceans. In particular, the North Atlantic Drift is responsible for the temperate climate of north-western Europe.
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