Arabian Sea

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Arabian Sea
Arabian Sea - n22e70.jpg
Arabian Sea map.png
Coordinates 14°N65°E / 14°N 65°E / 14; 65 Coordinates: 14°N65°E / 14°N 65°E / 14; 65
Type Sea
Part of Indian Ocean
Basin  countriesFlag of India.svg  India, Flag of Iran.svg  Iran, Flag of Maldives.svg  Maldives, Flag of Oman.svg  Oman, Flag of Pakistan.svg  Pakistan, Flag of the United Arab Emirates.svg  United Arab Emirates, Flag of Yemen.svg  Yemen, Flag of Somalia.svg  Somalia
Max. width2,400 km (1,500 mi)
Surface area3,862,000 km2 (1,491,000 sq mi)
Max. depth4,652 m (15,262 ft)
Islands Astola island, Basavaraja Durga Island, Lakshadweep, Piram Island, Pirotan, Socotra
17th century map depicting the locations of the Periplus of the Erythraean Sea PeriplusAncientMap.jpg
17th century map depicting the locations of the Periplus of the Erythraean Sea

The Arabian Sea is a region of the northern Indian Ocean bounded on the north by Pakistan and Iran, on the west by the Gulf of Aden, Guardafui Channel and the Arabian Peninsula, on the southeast by the Laccadive Sea, [1] on the southwest by the Somali Sea, [2] and on the east by India. Its total area is 3,862,000 km2 (1,491,000 sq mi) and its maximum depth is 4,652 meters (15,262 ft). The Gulf of Aden in the west connects the Arabian Sea to the Red Sea through the strait of Bab-el-Mandeb, and the Gulf of Oman is in the northwest, connecting it to the Persian Gulf.

Contents

The Arabian Sea has been crossed by many important marine trade routes since the third or second millennium BCE. Major seaports include Kandla Port, Okha Port, Mumbai Port, Nhava Sheva Port (Navi Mumbai), Mormugão Port (Goa), New Mangalore Port and Kochi Port in India, the Port of Karachi, Port Qasim, and the Gwadar Port in Pakistan, Chabahar Port in Iran and the Port of Salalah in Salalah, Oman. The largest islands in the Arabian Sea include Socotra (Yemen), Masirah Island (Oman), Lakshadweep (India) and Astola Island (Pakistan).

Geography

Arabian Sea from space Arabian Sea - October 2012.jpg
Arabian Sea from space

The Arabian Sea's surface area is about 3,862,000 km2 (1,491,130 sq mi). [3] The maximum width of the Sea is approximately 2,400 km (1,490 mi), and its maximum depth is 4,652 metres (15,262 ft). The biggest river flowing into the Sea is the Indus River.

The Arabian Sea has two important branches — the Gulf of Aden in the southwest, connecting with the Red Sea through the strait of Bab-el-Mandeb; and the Gulf of Oman to the northwest, connecting with the Persian Gulf. There are also the gulfs of Khambhat and Kutch on the Indian Coast.

The countries with coastlines on the Arabian Sea are Yemen, Oman, Pakistan, Iran, India and the Maldives. [3]

Limits

The International Hydrographic Organization defines the limits of the Arabian Sea as follows: [4]

Alternative names

The Arabian sea was called Erythraean Sea in Roman times. [3]

The Arabian Sea historically and geographically has been referred to with many different names by Arabian and European geographers and travelers, including Sindhu Sagar, [5] Arabbi Samudra, [5] and the Erythraean Sea, [6]

Trade routes

Names, routes and locations of the Periplus of the Erythraean Sea Periplous of the Erythraean Sea.svg
Names, routes and locations of the Periplus of the Erythraean Sea

The Arabian Sea has been an important marine trade route since the era of the coastal sailing vessels from possibly as early as the 3rd millennium BCE, certainly the late 2nd millennium BCE through the later days known as the Age of Sail. By the time of Julius Caesar, several well-established combined land-sea trade routes depended upon water transport through the Sea around the rough inland terrain features to its north.

These routes usually began in the Far East or down river from Madhya Pradesh with transshipment via historic Bharuch (Bharakuccha), traversed past the inhospitable coast of today's Iran then split around Hadhramaut into two streams north into the Gulf of Aden and thence into the Levant, or south into Alexandria via Red Sea ports such as Axum. Each major route involved transhipping to pack animal caravan, travel through desert country and risk of bandits and extortionate tolls by local potentates.

This southern coastal route past the rough country in the southern Arabian Peninsula was significant, and the Egyptian Pharaohs built several shallow canals to service the trade, one more or less along the route of today's Suez canal, and another from the Red Sea to the Nile River, both shallow works that were swallowed up by huge sand storms in antiquity. Later the kingdom of Axum arose in Ethiopia to rule a mercantile empire rooted in the trade with Europe via Alexandria.

Major ports

The Kochi Port located on the south-west coast of India is the nearest Indian port to the international shipping routes, as well as one of the largest and busiest ports serving the Arabian Sea. Seen here is the International Container Transshipment Terminal, the only such facility in India. Container terminal.JPG
The Kochi Port located on the south-west coast of India is the nearest Indian port to the international shipping routes, as well as one of the largest and busiest ports serving the Arabian Sea. Seen here is the International Container Transshipment Terminal, the only such facility in India.

The Port of Karachi is Pakistan's largest and busiest seaport. It is located between the Karachi towns of Kiamari and Saddar.

The Gwadar Port is a warm-water, deep-sea port situated at Gwadar in Balochistan, Pakistan at the apex of the Arabian Sea and at the entrance of the Persian Gulf, about 460 km west of Karachi and approximately 75 km (47 mi) east of Pakistan's border with Iran. The port is located on the eastern bay of a natural hammerhead-shaped peninsula jutting out into the Arabian Sea from the coastline.

Port of Salalah in Salalah, Oman is also a major port in the area. The International Task Force often uses the port as a base. There is a significant number of warships of all nations coming in and out of the port, which makes it a very safe bubble. The port handled just under 3.5m teu (twenty-foot equivalent unit, a measure used for capacity in container transportation) in 2009. [7]

Jawaharlal Nehru Port in Mumbai is the largest port in the Arabian Sea, and the largest container port in India. Major Indian ports in the Arabian Sea are Mundra Port, Kandla Port, Nava Sheva, Kochi Port, Mumbai Port, and Mormugão. [8] [9]

Islands

Landsat view over Socotra, a Yemeni island. Socotra satview.jpg
Landsat view over Socotra, a Yemeni island.

There are several islands in the Arabian Sea, with the most important ones being Lakshadweep Islands (India), Socotra (Yemen), Masirah (Oman) and Astola Island (Pakistan).

The Lakshadweep Islands (formerly known as the Laccadive, Minicoy, and Aminidivi Islands) is a group of islands in the Laccadive Sea region of Arabian Sea, 200 to 440 km (120 to 270 mi) off the southwestern coast of India. The archipelago is a Union Territory and is governed by the Union Government of India. The islands form the smallest Union Territory of India: their total surface area is just 32 km2 (12 sq mi). The lagoon area covers about 4,200 km2 (1,600 sq mi), the territorial waters area 20,000 km2 (7,700 sq mi) and the exclusive economic zone area 400,000 km2 (150,000 sq mi). The islands are the northernmost of the Lakshadweep-Maldives-Chagos group of islands.

Astola Island, also known as Jezira Haft Talar in Balochi, or 'Island of the Seven Hills', is a small, uninhabited island in the northern tip of the Arabian Sea in Pakistan's territorial waters.

Socotra, also spelled Soqotra, is the largest island, being part of a small archipelago of four islands. It lies some 240 km (150 mi) east of the Horn of Africa and 380 km (240 mi) south of the Arabian Peninsula.

Masirah is an island off the east coast of Oman.

Dead zone

The dead zone is an area in the Gulf of Oman that is completely depleted of oxygen, as a result of which it does not support marine life. It is the world's largest-known dead zone with an area larger than that of Scotland. [10]

See also

Notes

  1. Banse, Karl, and Charles R. McClain. "Winter blooms of phytoplankton in the Arabian Sea as observed by the Coastal Zone Color Scanner." Marine Ecology Progress Series (1986): 201-211.
  2. Pham, J. Peter. "Putting Somali piracy in context." Journal of Contemporary African Studies 28.3 (2010): 325-341.
  3. 1 2 3 Arabian Sea, Encyclopædia Britannica
  4. "Limits of Oceans and Seas, 3rd edition" (PDF). International Hydrographic Organization. 1953. Archived from the original (PDF) on 7 December 2017. Retrieved 7 February 2010.
  5. 1 2 "Kamat's Potpourri: The Arabian Sea". kamat.com.
  6. "The Voyage around the Erythraean Sea". washington.edu.
  7. Salalah’s versatility beats the slump Archived October 25, 2012, at the Wayback Machine , Port of Salalah
  8. "TRAFFIC HANDLED AT MAJOR PORTS (LAST 7 YEARS)" (PDF). shipping.gov.in.[ permanent dead link ]
  9. "WORLD PORT RANKINGS" (PDF). aapa.files.cms-plus.com. 2009.
  10. "World's largest 'dead zone' discovered, and it's not in the Gulf of Mexico". nola.com.

Related Research Articles

Gulf of Oman A marginal sea of the northern Indian Ocean between the Arabian Peninsula and India

The Gulf of Oman or Sea of Oman (Makran ) is a gulf that connects the Arabian Sea with the Strait of Hormuz, which then runs to the Persian Gulf. It borders Iran and Pakistan on the north, Oman on the south, and the United Arab Emirates on the west.

Khuriya Muriya Islands island

The Khuriya Muriya Islands are a group of five islands in the Arabian Sea, 40 km (25 mi) off the southeastern coast of the Sultanate of Oman. The islands form part of the province of Shalim and the Hallaniyat Islands in the governorate of Dhofar.

Geography of Oman

Oman is a country situated in Southwest Asia, bordering the Arabian Sea, Gulf of Oman, and Persian Gulf, between Yemen and the United Arab Emirates (UAE). The coast of Oman was an important part in the Omani empire and sultanate.

Gulf of Aden A gulf between the Horn of Africa and Yemen in the Arabian Peninsula

The Gulf of Aden is a deepwater gulf amidst Yemen to the north, the Arabian Sea to the east, Djibouti to the west, and the Guardafui Channel, Socotra (Yemen), Somaliland and Somalia to the south. In the northwest, it connects with the Red Sea through the Bab-el-Mandeb strait, and in the southeast, it connects with the Somali Sea segment of the Indian Ocean through the Guardafui Channel. To the west, it narrows into the Gulf of Tadjoura, in the Horn of Africa. The Gulf of Aden separates the Arabian peninsula with the Horn of Africa.

Gwadar Port city in Balochistan, Pakistan

Gwadar is a port city on the southwestern coast of Balochistan, Pakistan. The city is located on the shores of the Arabian Sea opposite Oman. Gwadar was an overseas possession of Oman from 1783 to 1958. It is about 120 kilometres (75 mi) southwest of Turbat, while the sister port city of Chabahar in Iran's Sistan and Baluchestan Province is about 170 kilometres (110 mi) to the west of Gwadar.

Socotra largest of four islands of the Socotra archipelago, Yemen

Socotra or Soqotra, located between the Guardafui Channel and the Arabian Sea, is the largest of four islands in the Socotra archipelago. The territory is located near major shipping routes and is officially part of Yemen, and had long been a subdivision of the Aden Governorate. In 2004, it became attached to the Hadhramaut Governorate, which is much closer to the island than Aden. In 2013, the archipelago became its governorate, the Socotra Governorate.

Laccadive Sea A body of water bordering India, the Maldives, and Sri Lanka.

The Laccadive Sea or lakshadweep Sea or ലക്ഷദ്വീപ് കടല്‍ is a body of water bordering India, the Maldives, and Sri Lanka. It is located to the southwest of Karnataka, to the west of Kerala and to the south of Tamil Nadu. This warm sea has a stable water temperature through the year and is rich in marine life, the Gulf of Mannar alone hosting about 3,600 species. Mangaluru,Kannur, Kozhikode, Kochi, Kollam, Thiruvananthapuram, Tuticorin, Colombo, and Malé are the major cities on the shore of the Laccadive Sea. Kanyakumari, the southernmost tip of peninsular India, also borders this sea.

Minicoy island

Minicoy, locally known as Maliku[məliku]; is an island in Lakshadweep, India. Along with Viringili, it is on Maliku atoll, the southernmost atoll of Lakshadweep archipelago. Administratively, it is a census town in the Indian union territory of Lakshadweep.

Lakshadweep Union territory of India

Lakshadweep, is a group of islands in the Laccadive Sea, 200 to 440 km off the southwestern coast of India. The archipelago is administered as a union territory and district of India. They were also known as Laccadive Islands, although geographically this is only the name of the central subgroup of the group. Lakshadweep means "one hundred thousand islands" in Malayalam. The islands form the smallest Union Territory of India and their total surface area is just 32 km2 (12 sq mi). The lagoon area covers about 4,200 km2 (1,600 sq mi), the territorial waters area 20,000 km2 (7,700 sq mi) and the exclusive economic zone area 400,000 km2 (150,000 sq mi). The region forms a single Indian district with 10 subdivisions. Kavaratti serves as the capital of the Union Territory and the region comes under the jurisdiction of Kerala High Court. The islands are the northernmost of the Lakshadweep-Maldives-Chagos group of islands, which are the tops of a vast undersea mountain range, the Chagos-Laccadive Ridge.

Masirah Island island in Oman

Masirah Island, also referred to as Mazeira Island and Wilāyat Maṣīrah, is an island off the east coast of mainland Oman in the Arabian Sea, and the largest island of the country. It is 95 km (59 mi) long north-south, between 12 and 14 km wide, with an area of about 649 km², and a population estimated at 12,000 in 12 villages mainly in the north of the island. Administratively, it forms one of the eleven provinces of the Ash Sharqiyah Region. The principal village is Raʾs-Ḥilf in the northern part of the island. It contains a Royal Air Force of Oman air base and a fish factory, as well as a few small towns. Previously, the BBC had a relay facility consisting of both HF and MF broadcasting transmitters stationed there. Most of the island's interior is deserted, with access to the island only possible by a small ferry for cars or by Royal Air Force of Oman Airbus A320 or Lockheed C-130 Hercules flights.

The years before 1975 featured the pre-1975 North Indian Ocean cyclone seasons. Each season was an ongoing event in the annual cycle of tropical cyclone formation. The North Indian tropical cyclone season has no bounds, but they tend to form between April and December, peaks in May and November. These dates conventionally delimit the period of each year when most tropical cyclones form in the northern Indian Ocean. Below are the most significant cyclones in the time period. Because much of the North Indian coastline is near sea level and prone to flooding, these cyclones can easily kill many with storm surge and flooding. These cyclones are among the deadliest on earth in terms of numbers killed.

Pasni (city) City in Balochistan, Pakistan

Pasni, is a medium-sized city and a fishing port in Gwadar District, Balochistan, Pakistan. Its population is around 33,000. It is located on the Makran coast on Arabian Sea about 450 km from Karachi. Administratively, Pasni is the headquarters of the Pasni sub-division of Gwadar district that includes Pasni and Ormara Tehsils as well as Astola Island which lies 40 km ESE of Pasni, in the Arabian Sea. The city of Pasni is itself administratively subdivided into two Union Councils.

Astola Island island in Pakistan

Astola Island, also known as Jezira Haft TalarSatadip or 'Island of the Seven Hills', is a small uninhabited Pakistani island in the Arabian Sea approximately 25 km (16 mi) south of the nearest part of the coast and 39 km (24 mi) southeast of the fishing port of Pasni. Astola is Pakistan's largest offshore island at approximately 6.7 km (4.2 mi) long with a maximum width of 2.3 km (1.4 mi) and an area of approximately 6.7 km2 (2.6 sq mi). The highest point is 246 ft (75 m) above sea level. Administratively, the island is part of the Pasni subdistrict of Gwadar District in Balochistan province. The island can be accessed by motorized boats from Pasni, with a journey time of about 5 hours to reach the island.

Cyclone Gonu North Indian cyclone in 2007

Super Cyclonic Storm Gonu was an extremely powerful tropical cyclone that became the strongest cyclone on record in the Arabian Sea. The second named tropical cyclone of the 2007 North Indian Ocean cyclone season, Gonu developed from a persistent area of convection in the eastern Arabian Sea on June 1, 2007. With a favorable upper-level environment and warm sea surface temperatures, it rapidly intensified to attain peak winds of 240 km/h (150 mph) on June 4, according to the India Meteorological Department. Gonu weakened after encountering dry air and cooler waters, and early on June 6, it made landfall on the easternmost tip of Oman, becoming the strongest tropical cyclone to hit the Arabian Peninsula. It then turned northward into the Gulf of Oman, and dissipated on June 7, after making landfall in southern Iran, the first landfall in the country since 1898.

Sooty gull Species of bird

The sooty gull is a species of gull in the family Laridae, also known as the Aden gull or Hemprich's gull. It is found in Bahrain, Djibouti, Egypt, Eritrea, India, Iran, Israel, Jordan, Kenya, Lebanon, Maldives, Mozambique, Oman, Pakistan, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Somalia, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Tanzania, United Arab Emirates, and Yemen. As is the case with many gulls, it has traditionally been placed in the genus Larus. The sooty gull is named in honour of the German naturalist Wilhelm Hemprich who died in 1825 while on a scientific expedition to Egypt and the Middle East with his friend Christian Gottfried Ehrenberg.

Arabian Peninsula coastal fog desert Ecoregion (WWF)

The Arabian Peninsula coastal fog desert, also known as the Southwestern Arabian coastal xeric scrub, is desert ecoregion on the southern coasts of the Arabian Peninsula, which experiences thick fogs where visibility may be reduced to 33 feet (10 m). It is classed as an Afrotropical fog desert

Cyclone Phet North Indian cyclone in 2010

Very Severe Cyclonic Storm Phet was a powerful tropical cyclone that made landfall on Oman, Western India, and Pakistan. The third named cyclone of the 2010 cyclone season, Phet developed in the Arabian Sea on May 31 to the west of India. With conducive environmental conditions, the storm intensified to reach peak sustained winds of 155 km/h (100 mph) on June 2, based on analysis by the India Meteorological Department (IMD). On the next day, Phet dropped heavy rainfall while moving across eastern Oman, with a peak of 603 mm (23.7 in) in Qurayyat. The rains flooded arid areas and collected into wadis – normally dry river beds. Thousands of homes were wrecked across Oman. There were 24 fatalities in the country, and damage was estimated at US$780 million.

1977 Oman cyclone

The 1977 Oman cyclone was the deadliest tropical cyclone on record to strike Oman. The storm formed off the west coast of India in the Arabian Sea, and curved westward to reach peak winds of 110 km/h (70 mph). The storm struck Masirah Island and later southern Oman on June 13, before dissipating the next day over Saudi Arabia. Producing wind gusts to 230 km/h (140 mph), the storm was the strongest cyclone on record to hit the Arabian Peninsula until Cyclone Gonu hit in 2007. About 95% of Marisah Island was damaged by the strong winds, including much of the military base. The cyclone dropped 430.6 mm (16.95 in) of rainfall over a 24 hour period on Marisah, which was the highest daily total in the country as of 2003. Overall, the storm killed at least 105 people and left 50,000 homeless.

Cyclone Mekunu Category 3 storm in 2018

Extremely Severe Cyclonic Storm Mekunu was the strongest storm to strike Oman's Dhofar Governorate since 1959. The second named storm of the 2018 North Indian Ocean cyclone season, Mekunu developed out of a low pressure area on May 21. It gradually intensified, passing east of Socotra on May 23 as a very intense tropical cyclone. On May 25, Mekunu reached its peak intensity. The India Meteorological Department estimated 10 minute sustained winds of 175 km/h (110 mph), making Mekunu an extremely severe cyclonic storm. The American-based Joint Typhoon Warning Center estimated slightly higher 1 minute winds of 185 km/h (115 mph). While at peak intensity, Mekunu made landfall near Raysut, Oman, on May 25. The storm rapidly weakened over land, dissipating on May 27.

References

Wikisource-logo.svg This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain : Chisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). "Arabian Sea". Encyclopædia Britannica (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press.

Commons-logo.svg Media related to Arabian Sea at Wikimedia Commons