CLAUS LUNAU / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY CLAUS LUNAU / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Underwater wave, illustration. The wave shown here, passing below and lifting a boat (white arrow), is a type known as an internal wave. It is a type of gravity wave. Such waves exist within a fluid medium (rather than on the surface), where there is a change in salinity and density in the water column. Waves of this sort in seas and oceans can be very large and travel very slowly over long distances. They are thought to play a role in stirring up nutrients which support food chains in the world's oceans. In the oceans, these waves are also called internal tides.
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