UPSC IAS Prelims 2021: Important Questions on World Geography - Topic 10 (Ocean Currents)

In this article, check most important questions on the major ocean currents of the world. Aspirants of UPSC Civil Services Prelims 2021 exams can solve these questions to test their knowledge of World Geography.

Created On: May 11, 2021 13:53 IST
UPSC IAS Prelims 2021: Important Questions on World Geography - Topic 10 (Ocean Currents)

The Ocean Currents consist of horizontal and vertical components of the circulation system of ocean waters that is produced by gravity, wind friction, and water density variation in different parts of the ocean. They are classified into three-part i.e. Drift, Current, and Stream on the basis of the direction of flow, speed, and shape. They can be cold, warm, and hot. Warm ocean currents originate near the equator and move towards the poles or higher latitudes while cold currents originate near the poles or higher latitudes and move towards the tropics or lower latitudes. The current's direction and speed depend on the shoreline and the ocean floor. They can flow for thousands of miles and are found in all the major oceans of the world. The list of Ocean Currents of the world is given below along with their nature.

Month-wise Current Affairs Quiz for Preparation (May 2020-April 2021)

Ques 1: Which of the following natural phenomena is responsible for the occurrence of ocean currents?

1. Salinity

2. Earth’s rotation

3. Temperature

4. Planetary Winds

Select the correct code:

(a) 2 and 3 only

(b) 2, 3 and 4 only

(c) 1 and 3 only

(d) All of the above

Ans: d

 Explanation: The following are the factors responsible for ocean currents: The Planetary winds, Temperatures, Salinity, The earth's rotation, Obstruction from land

Ques 2: Which of the following currents is not a warm current?

(a) Florida Current

(b) California Current

(c) Brazilian Current

(d) Mozambique Current

Ans: b

 Explanation: Currents are designated warm or cold. This designation comes from their point of origin, not their actual temperature. Any current flowing from the equatorial region toward the polar region is designated as warm; any current flowing from the polar region toward the equator is designated as cold. In actuality, a warm current has a higher temperature than surrounding waters and a cold current has a lower temperature than surrounding waters.  California current hence is a cold current.

Ques 3: Consider the following statements;

1. Cold currents flow from polar regions towards the equator.

2. They flow in the clockwise direction in the northern hemisphere.

Which of the given statements is/are correct?

(a) 1 only

(b) 2 only

(c) Both 1 and 2

(d) Neither 1 nor 2

Ans: a

 Explanation: Cold currents flow from polar regions towards the equator and have a lower surface temperature [ from higher latitudes to lower latitudes]. They flow in the anti-clockwise direction in the northern hemisphere and in the clockwise direction in the southern hemisphere.

Ques 4: Which one of the following is not an Atlantic Ocean current?

(b) Gulf Stream

(c) Somali Current

(d) Benguela Current

Ans: c

 Explanation: The Somali Current is a cold ocean boundary current that runs along the coast of Somalia and Oman in the Western Indian Ocean and is analogous to the Gulf Stream in the Atlantic Ocean. This current is heavily influenced by the monsoons and is the only major upwelling system that occurs on a western boundary of an ocean. The water that is upwelled by the current merges with another upwelling system, creating one of the most productive ecosystems in the ocean.

Ques 5: Consider the following statements:

1. Warm currents have a higher surface temperature.

2. These currents flow in the clockwise direction in the northern hemisphere.

Which of the given statements is/are correct?

(a) 1 only

(b) 2 only

(c) Both 1 and 2

(d) Neither 1 nor 2

Ans: c

 Explanation: Warm currents flow from equatorial regions towards the polar regions and hence have a higher surface temperature. [from lower latitudes to higher latitudes]. These currents flow in the clockwise direction in the northern hemisphere and in the anti-clockwise direction in the southern hemisphere.

Ques 6: Consider the following statements:

1. A land mass obstructs the direction of flow of ocean current:

2. The south equatorial current in the Atlantic Ocean is obstructed by the North American continent.

Which of the given statements is/are correct?

(a) 1 only

(b) 2 only

(c) Both 1 and 2

(d) Neither 1 nor 2

Ans: a

 Explanation: A land mass obstructs the direction of flow of ocean current and divides the ocean current which in turns flow in a different direction. Example: The south equatorial current in the Atlantic Ocean is obstructed by the South American continent and the South equatorial current divides to create the Brazilian current which flows in the south Atlantic Ocean.

Ques 7: Consider the following statements:

1. Coastline plays an important role in governing the direction of the flow of the ocean current.

2. Brazilian current is an example of one such phenomena.

Which of the given statements is/are correct?

(a) 1 only

(b) 2 only

(c) Both 1 and 2

(d) Neither 1 nor 2

Ans: c

 Explanation: Coastline plays an important role in governing the direction of the flow of the ocean current. For example, the equatorial current after being obstructed by the Brazilian coast is bifurcated into two branches. The Northern Branch is called the Caribbean current while the Southern branch is called the Brazilian current.

Ques 8: In the Northern Hemisphere currents flow to the right of the wind direction while in the Southern Hemisphere, winds blow to the left. This happens due to:

(a) Coriolis Effect

(b) Temperature

(c) Rotation of Earth

(d) Salinity

Ans: a

 Explanation: Because of the Coriolis Effect, in the Northern Hemisphere currents flow to the right of the wind direction while in the Southern Hemisphere, winds blow to the left. Intervening continents and basin topography often block the continuous flow of the water and often deflect the moving water in a circular pattern. This circular motion of water along the periphery of the ocean basin is called Gyre. The following Map will broadly show the formation of different gyres in Oceans.

Ques 9: Which of the following is a warm water current?

(a) Benguela Current

(b) Japan Current

(c) Falkland Current

(d) Canaries current

Ans: b

 Explanation: The Kuroshio, also known as the Black or Japan Current or the Black Stream, is a north-flowing, warm ocean current on the west side of the North Pacific Ocean.

Also check: List of Ocean Currents of the World

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