Why is the sea salty

We all know that the water of the sea and the oceans is salty, but do we know why it is so? If the rivers that flow into the sea are freshwater, why is the ocean salty? About 4, 650 million years ago the Earth was formed by a large hot mass, the continents and oceans had not yet formed and, logically, the living beings did not yet exist. Once cooled, they began to emerge through gas geysers into the atmosphere, basically water vapor. Thanks to the condensation, they turned into rainwater. This rain is the one that ended up forming the rivers and oceans due to its constant fall, but these were of fresh water. So, when did the salinization process take place?

In .com we want to explain why the sea is salty and how that transformation occurred. Do not miss it!

What is sea water?

It is a question that we do not usually ask ourselves, but that does not make his answer less interesting. Sea water is one of the most fascinating land elements. In the seawater compound there are different components that make it unique, from materials that have dissolved belonging to the earth's crust to products and fluids released by an infinity of marine organisms. All the elements that make it up are necessary for life to exist in the temperate waters of the seas or in the icy liquid of the oceans.

The salinity, the temperature, the gases that accumulate there, the nutrients and their pH are other important factors so that in that space a type of life or another develops.

How does the salinization process take place?

The salinity of the water is produced by the different minerals that make up this extraordinary element. Basically, the salinization of water occurs thanks to the dissolution of chlorine, sodium, sulfur, magnesium, calcium and potassium.

The process has taken place over millions of years of filtration and dissolution of components from the waste and fluids of marine organisms and the rupture of igneous rocks produced by wear and erosion.

Finally, the existence of a large amount of chlorine and sodium ions cause the formation of sodium chloride or salt. These elements have been enriching, with the minerals named above, the composition of the sea water making it finally salty.

Studying salt water

Throughout the 20th century, a large part of the scientific community has devoted its efforts to the study of water salinity, although, unfortunately, all the components that make up seawater have not yet been discovered.

This problem is due to the lack of adequate methods for such measurement and the great oceanic extension that makes the possibility of carrying out completely reliable evaluations enormously difficult.

What is known is that seawater is composed of a wide variety of chemical elements, at least 72 located in different quantities important enough to be measured optimally.

What is seawater composed of?

Below, we present a summary of some elements that make up the water and make it salty:

  • Chlorine (Cl): 19.3% per thousand parts of water.
  • Sodium (Na): 10.7% per thousand parts of water.
  • Sulfate (SO4): 2.7% per thousand parts of water.
  • Magnesium (Mg): 1.3% per thousand parts of water.
  • Calcium (Ca): 0.4% per thousand parts of water.
  • Potassium (K): 0.4% per thousand parts of water.
  • Bicarbonate (HCO3): 0.15 € per thousand parts of water.
  • Bromide (Br-1): 0.07% per thousand parts of water.
  • Other elements: 0.06% per thousand parts of water.
  • Total salinity: 35.08%