What is in Sea Water?

The Chemical Composition of Sea Water

The sea, our ocean, is a vast expanse of salt water covering about seven-tenths of the planet. Our seas cover a surface area of roughly 139 million square miles!

Sea water, as many swimmers who have gulped a mouthful will attest, is not only salty but also bitter. Sea water consists of "brine", water and material washed down from land composed mainly of common salt (sodium chloride) but also traces of all the elements and many other chemicals.

The strength of salt in the water averages around 3.5%, being weaker around ice caps and stronger in land-locked areas. The concentration in the Dead Sea and Red Sea areas for example is much higher, around a whopping 40%.

sea water

Sea water also holds in suspension sand and silt, plus multitudes of living creatures and the waste products and corpses of others.

Pollution in our Oceans

Pollution is a big problem across the world at the moment, with plastics being under particular scrutiny for the harm they cause to wildlife and the chemicals released into the ocean.

Other materials also play a role in polluting our seas, and make up a proportion of the composition of sea water in modern times. These include sewage, factory waste, crude oil and even radioactive waste. Not nice!

Harvesting Salt for Aquariums

When sea water freezes, or when it evaporates or boils, its salts crystallize out, with only the water itself becoming ice or steam. Fresh water may be obtained by melting ice or distilling brine (boiling and condensing the steam). In modern times, premium sea salt is harvested once it has formed salt-pans, often in shallow depressions in rocks or over vast areas of extremely dry land, such as is found in the Red Sea region.

Many companies, like Red Sea, will harvest salt from areas of high concentration of salinity to give you the purest and healthiest form of sea salt for your aquariums. Trace elements and other minerals will have been refined to bring you the most habitable marine fish tank environment possible.
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Photo credit(s): Canva Pro Licence

BrandsCoralKnowledgeMarineOceans and seasWater quality

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