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Posted by on Nov 17, 2015 in Tell Me Why Numerous Questions and Answers |

What Causes the Ocean Tides?

What Causes the Ocean Tides?

The rise and fall of the tides are caused mainly by the pull of gravity from the moon on the earth’s waters. The moon pulls up the water on the part of the earth that is directly below it.

This bulge of high water raises the water-line along the shore, causing high tide. As the earth turns, the water pulls away, and we have low tide.

Because the moon tugs with the least force on the earth’s far side, a second tidal bulge forms on the far side where a hill of water is “left behind.” In most places in the world, tides go in and out this way twice each day.

Few Interesting Facts About Tides

The same tidal forces that cause tides in the oceans affect the solid Earth causing it to change shape by a few inches.

There are typically two spring tides and two neap tides each month.

In a semidiurnal cycle the high and low tides occur around 6 hours and 12.5 minutes apart.

Local factors such as weather can also affect the tides.

The energy from tidal forces can be harnessed for electricity using tidal turbines, fences, or barrages.

Content for this question contributed by Devon Rawn, resident of Aptos, Santa Cruz County, California, USA