The Pacific Ocean is a place of wonder that surprises and fascinates many people. These Pacific Ocean facts might just do the same for you. So, if you want to learn about the largest, deepest place in the world, which can be both scary and breathtaking, keep reading.

How Deep is the Pacific Ocean?

The average depth of the Pacific Ocean is 13,000 feet, or 4,280 meters. The Pacific Ocean‘s max depth, or the deepest place in the world, is 36,200 ft at Challenger Deep, which is located at the bottom of the Mariana Trench. 

(WorldAtlas, 2021)

Top 10 Fun Facts About the Pacific Ocean

Essential Facts About the Pacific Ocean 

We’ve chosen a number of stats and facts that will show you all the marvels of the Pacific. So, let’s dive in.

1. The widest point of the Pacific Ocean is 12,300 miles wide.

(Mental Floss, 2020)

To understand how wide this is, If we take the Moon, for example, five Moons could fit in the width of the Pacific Ocean!

After all, considering the Pacific ocean is located between Asia and America, the two most distant continents, this width is not surprising.

2. The Pacific Ocean‘s size, by surface area, is 63 million square miles.

(NOAA’s National Ocean Service, 2021, WorldAtlas, 2021)

This means that the Pacific takes 46.6% of all ocean surface. The volume of the Pacific Ocean is also unbelievable — around 669,880,000 km3, or 50.1% of all ocean water.

3. The average temperature of the Pacific’s surface is 70–80 Fahrenheit.

(WorldAtlas, 2021)

But the Pacific Ocean’s temperature can be as low as 28 Fahrenheit around the North and South poles. Also, the Pacific Ocean is cold around the Equator because of the winds pushing surface water from the Equator to the Western Pacific Ocean.

Regardless, since the new research shows that the Pacific’s temperature is rising due to climate changes, the weather and climate in the Pacific Ocean might drastically change.

4. The Antarctic and Pacific oceans meet at Cape Horn, Chile.

(Travel Guide, 2020,  BBC Science Focus Magazine, 2019)

They do not actually meet but mix, as all the oceans are a part of one big ocean mass. Research even shows that some of the North Atlantic and Pacific Ocean currents are completely synchronized.

5. The other name for the basin of the Pacific Ocean is Ring of Fire.

(NOAA’s National Ocean Service, 2021)

The name Ring of Fire for the Pacific Ocean comes from the fact that it has high volcanic activity and a lot of earthquakes. These occur in places where two tectonic plates meet, and one goes below the other.

6. Only around 13.8% of the Pacific Ocean floor has been mapped.

(Frontiers, 2019)

This number from 2019 counts only the mapping made using recent technology. The scientists are working hard, though, and there are plans to finish mapping all ocean floors by the end of 2030.

7. The Equator separates the Pacific into two parts.

(WorldAtlas, 2021)

North of the Equator is the location of the Northern Pacific Ocean, while south of the Equator is where the Southern Pacific Ocean can be found.

The Pacific can also be divided into the Western Pacific Ocean and Eastern Pacific Ocean. Still, these divisions are not so commonly used.

8. The official Pacific Ocean Coordinates are approximately -8.783195 latitude/-124.508523 longitude.

(FindLatitudeAndLongitude, 2021)

Of course, this will lead you to only one small area, and since the ocean is huge, there are many other coordinates.

Pacific Ocean Animals

Check out these facts to find out about the animals living in the Pacific, many of which are either dangerous or endangered.

9. The Pacific bluefin tuna is at less than 5% of the original biomass.

(International Union for Conservation of Nature, 2021, NOAA Fisheries, 2021)

It’s one of the Pacific Ocean fish most affected by overfishing, as 95% of the tuna caught didn’t even have a chance to reproduce. The numbers are now recovering, but they are still very low.

On the other hand, some animals, like the Pacific Ocean perch, have their biomass growing at an incredible speed.

10. The killer whale is the most dangerous animal living in the Pacific Ocean.

(AZ Animals, 2021)

Some other animals that also live in the Pacific, such as the Pacific Ocean jellyfish, are also quite dangerous. A few jellyfish species are so venomous they can kill you very quickly and easily.

Pacific Ocean sharks are also considered to be quite scary. Still, statistics show they’re not as dangerous as we think, and you’re unlikely to get attacked by one.

Interesting Facts About the Pacific Ocean

To find out about the Pacific Ocean’s pollution, history, and some more fascinating facts, read on.

11. Japan plans to release diluted nuclear waste from Fukushima into the Pacific.

(Washington Post, 2021, NOAA Fisheries, 2021)

The plans could lead to high radiation levels and the disappearance of life from some parts of the Pacific. But, for now, the Pacific Ocean radiation levels are not harmful to humans.

12. Airplanes rarely fly over the Pacific.

(Monroe Aerospace, 2019)

They do this mainly to save fuel. Curved routes are shorter, meaning that they are saving money this way. It’s also safer to fly further away from the Pacific, so they avoid it for this reason too.

13. The Pacific Ocean was named by Ferdinand Magellan in the 16th century.

(NOAA’s National Ocean Service, 2021)

Magellan was the one who discovered the Pacific Ocean during his 1519/20 expedition. He gave it the name Pacific, meaning peace in Portuguese since the water was peaceful at the time.

14. A hurricane in the Pacific Ocean is a tropical cyclone that reaches winds of over 74 miles per hour.

(NOAA’s National Ocean Service, 2021)

In fact, 74 mph is the minimum for it to be called a hurricane. But, interestingly, not every cyclone that reaches this speed is called a hurricane. The name for this phenomenon differs based on the part of the Pacific Ocean where it occurs.

If it happens in the Northwest Pacific, it’s called a typhoon. If it occurs in the Southern Pacific, it’s called a tropical cyclone. Only the cyclones in the eastern North Pacific and central North Pacific are called hurricanes.

15. The Great Pacific Ocean Garbage Patch takes up 610,000 square miles.

(EcoWatch, 2021)

It weighs 79,000 metric tons and mainly consists of plastic bottles, nets, microplastics, and similar trash. Due to its size, it is also called the Pacific Ocean trash island or plastic island.

Surprisingly, studies show that some species have actually adapted to living on the Pacific Garbage patch. But, although some rare species are thriving because of the garbage, Pacific Ocean pollution is the cause of death for many other animals.

FAQ

When did Lewis and Clark reach the Pacific Ocean?

Lewis and Clark reached the Pacific in November 1805 after more than two years of expedition. 

(History, 2021)

What is the Pacific Ocean known for?

The Pacific Ocean is known for being the largest and deepest ocean on the planet. It’s also known for many other facts you can read in this text.

(NOAA’s National Ocean Service, 2021)

How did the Pacific Ocean get its name?

The Pacific Ocean got its name from the word “pacifico”, which means peaceful in Portuguese. So it got this name because Magellan thought it was peaceful. 

(NOAA’s National Ocean Service, 2021)

Why is the Pacific Ocean so blue?

The ocean’s color depends on the depth of the area you’re looking at, particles that are in the water, as well as plant life. Some microscopic plants, like phytoplankton, can make the ocean appear greener due to photosynthesis. If there are fewer of those plants, the ocean can appear more intensely blue.

(Nature, 2019, NASA Science, 2021)

How old is the Pacific Ocean?

The Pacific Ocean’s basin is about 200 million years old. The rocks found on the bottom were approximately that old, making the Pacific the oldest ocean.

(NOAA’s National Ocean Service, 2021)

Conclusion

The Pacific Ocean is the largest, deepest, widest, and oldest ocean and one of the most interesting places in the world. So with all its wonders, it’s not a surprise that many people are fascinated by it. 

With so many interesting Pacific ocean facts that we covered here, we’re sure you’ll appreciate it even more.

Sources:

Pacific Ocean facts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.