The Mariana Trench or Marianas Trench is the deepest part of the world's oceans. It is located in the western Pacific Ocean, to the east of the Mariana Islands. The trench is about 2,550 kilometres (1,580 mi) long but has an average width of only 69 kilometres (43 mi). It reaches a maximum-known depth of 10.911 km (10,911 ± 40 m) or 6.831 mi (36,069 ± 131 ft) at the Challenger Deep, a small slot-shaped valley in its floor, at its southern end, although some unrepeated measurements place the deepest portion at 11.03 kilometres (6.85 mi).
Physical geography (also known as geosystems or physiography) is one of the two major subfields of geography. Physical geography is that branch of natural science which deals with the study of processes and patterns in the natural environment like the atmosphere, hydrosphere, biosphere, and geosphere, as opposed to the cultural or built environment, the domain of human geography.
Within the body of physical geography, the Earth is often split either into several spheres or environments, the main spheres being the atmosphere, biosphere, cryosphere, geosphere, hydrosphere, lithosphere and pedosphere. Research in physical geography is often interdisciplinary and uses the systems approach.
This is a list of extreme points of Earth, the points that are farther north, south, east or west than, higher or lower in altitude than, or farthest inland or out to sea from, any other locations on the landmasses, continents or countries.
1A 1995 realignment of the International Date Line () moved all of Kiribati to the Asian side of the Date Line, causing Caroline Island to be the easternmost. However, if the previous Date Line were followed, the easternmost point would be Tafahi Niuatoputapu, in the Tonga Islands chain.
The Philippine Sea is a marginal sea east and north of the Philippines occupying an estimated surface area of 2 million mi² (5 million km²) on the western part of the North Pacific Ocean. It is bordered by the Philippine archipelago (Luzon, Samar, Leyte and Mindanao) on the southwest; Palau, Yap, and Ulithi (of the Carolines) on the southeast; the Marianas, including Guam, Saipan, and Tinian, on the east; the Bonin and Iwo Jima on the northeast; the Japanese islands of Honshu, Shikoku, and Kyūshū on the north; the Ryukyu Islands on the northwest; and Taiwan in the west.
The sea has a complex and diverse undersea relief. The floor is formed into a structural basin by a series of geologic faults and fracture zones. Island arcs, which are actually extended ridges protruding above the ocean surface due to plate tectonic activity in the area, enclose the Philippine Sea to the north, east and south. The Philippine archipelago, Ryukyu Islands, and the Marianas are examples. Another prominent feature of the Philippine Sea is the presence of deep sea trenches, among them the Philippine Trench and the Mariana Trench, containing the deepest point on the planet.
Plate tectonics (from the Late Latin tectonicus, from the Greek: τεκτονικός "pertaining to building") is a scientific theory that describes the large-scale motions of Earth's lithosphere. The model builds on the concepts of continental drift, developed during the first few decades of the 20th century. The geoscientific community accepted the theory after the concepts of seafloor spreading were developed in the late 1950s and early 1960s.
The lithosphere is broken up into tectonic plates. On Earth, there are seven or eight major plates (depending on how they are defined) and many minor plates. Where plates meet, their relative motion determines the type of boundary: convergent, divergent, or transform. Earthquakes, volcanic activity, mountain-building, and oceanic trench formation occur along these plate boundaries. The lateral relative movement of the plates typically varies from zero to 100 mm annually.
The Pacific Plate is an oceanic tectonic plate that lies beneath the Pacific Ocean. At 103 million square kilometres, it is the largest tectonic plate.
The north-eastern side is a divergent boundary with the Explorer Plate, the Juan de Fuca Plate and the Gorda Plate forming respectively the Explorer Ridge, the Juan de Fuca Ridge and the Gorda Ridge. In the middle of the eastern side is a transform boundary with the North American Plate along the San Andreas Fault, and a boundary with the Cocos Plate. The south-eastern side is a divergent boundary with the Nazca Plate forming the East Pacific Rise.
The Yap Trench is an oceanic trench near Yap Island in the western Pacific Ocean. The trench forms the part of the Pacific Ring of Fire between the Palau Islands and the Mariana Trench. It is 650 kilometres (400 mi) long and 8,527 metres (27,976 ft) deep at its deepest point.
The HMRG (Hawaiʻi Mapping Research Group) Deep was discovered in 1997 by a team of scientists from Hawaiʻi. Its depth (10,732 meters) is thought to be second or third only to the Challenger Deep and possibly Horizon Deep, currently the deepest known places in the ocean. It lies along the Mariana Trench, 200 kilometers to the east of the Challenger Deep and 145 km south of Guam.