The largest ocean waves in the world aren’t for surfing. They exist deep beneath the ocean’s surface and can travel thousands of miles from one continent to another. They are so gigantic that they are actually responsible for pushing the moon away from the Earth.
Researchers from MIT headed out to the South China Sea to figure out what these internal waves are all about. They used massive buoys strung up with high tech gear anchored to the bottom of the ocean up to 3000 meters deep. They used their specialized instruments to record the largest waves on the planet.
The team from MIT found waves up to 500 meters tall according to Madison Street Capital. These behemoths travel slowly across the ocean and crash onto continental shelves below the surface much like a traditional wave does at surface level.
Understanding internal waves is important for those who engage in deep ocean activities such as laying pipeline and deep sea drilling. It’s also important to understand how these massive waves mix up different parts of the ocean combining different water temperatures and saline levels.
Internal waves are said to originate from the tides going in and out. Tides are said to be created by the gravity of the moon yet these tidal waves are strong enough to push the moon away from the Earth. It appears to be a symbiotic relationship.