Education: The Layered Ocean

Oceanic processes occurring at the surface level of the open ocean are starkly different from those taking place at the seafloor. By studying the interactions between surface waters and the deep, scientists are able to observe how ocean water circulates around the world and how something like a changing climate will affect these complex processes.

Freshwater budget in the SPURS area

In this clip, Dr. Tom Farrar describes his research with surface seawater fluxes and what it means to create a salinity "budget" for the SPURS study site.
Map of annual mean seawater salinity at 1km depth

Dr. Stephen Riser explains that sea surface salinity can vary not only throughout the global ocean, but also from surface to deep.
The global water cycle

Why Care About Ocean Salinity? (00:04:37)  Asking Questions and Defining Problems Constructing Explanations and Designing Solutions Obtaining, Evaluating, and Communicating Information 
In this clip, Dr. Stephen Riser explains that ocean salinity is a way to better understand the global water cycle. Salinity plays a role in determining seawater density, which can determine where water travels throughout the oceans.