Barents Sea


August 13, 2022

Barents Sea (Norwegian Barentshavet, Russian Баренцево море), until 1853 the Murman Sea - marginal coastal sea in the Arctic Ocean, between Northern Europe, the Svalbard archipelagos and Franz Josef Land, Bear Island and New Land. In the west, it connects to the Norwegian Sea. Sea area 1424 thousand. km², average depth 229 m, maximum depth 600 m. Volume 316 thousand. km³. The sea is located on the continental shelf. The south-western part of the sea does not freeze in winter due to the influence of the warm North Atlantic current. The southeastern part of the sea is known as the Pechora Sea. The Barents Sea is of great importance for transport and fishing - there are important ports here - Murmansk (Russia) and Vardø (Norway). Before World War II, Finland also had access to the Barents Sea: Petsamo was the only ice-free port. Radioactive pollution of the sea is a serious problem due to the activities of the Russian nuclear fleet and the Norwegian nuclear waste processing plant. Recently, part of the Barents sea shelf towards Spitsbergen has become the subject of territorial disputes between Russia and Norway (as well as other countries), mainly due to the significant natural gas resources present here.

Research history

The shores of the Barents Sea have been inhabited since ancient times by Finno-Ugric Sami tribes. The first visits of modern Europeans (Vikings and then merchants from Novgorod) probably began at the end of the 11th century, and then became more and more frequent. The Barents Sea was named in 1853 after the Dutch navigator Willem Barents. Scientific research on the sea was started by the expedition of Fyodor Litke 1821-1824, and the first complete and accurate hydrological characterization of the sea was made by a team of Russian scientists sailing on a wooden research vessel "Н. М. Книпович "(" Mikołaj Knipowicz ") at the beginning of the 20th century.

Ocean and land borders

This reservoir is located on the outskirts of the Arctic Ocean, on the border with the Atlantic Ocean, between the northern coast of Europe in the south and the Wajgacz islands, Nowa Ziemia, Franz Josef Land in the east and Svalbard and Bear Island in the west.

Sea borders

In the west it borders with the Norwegian Sea basin, the border runs from the South Cape (Sorkapp) in Spitsbergen through Bear Island to the North Cape (Nordkapp) in Norway, in the south - with the White Sea, the border runs between the Swiatoj Nos capes on the Kola Peninsula and Kanin Nos on Kanin Peninsula, to the east - with the Kara Sea, between Wajgacz and Nowa Ziemia, and further north between Cape Desire (Mys Żelanija) on Nowa Ziemia and Przyl. Kohlsaat (Russian: Мыс Кользат) on Graham Bell Island, the easternmost island of the Franz Josef archipelago, from the north - with the Arctic Ocean, from Cape Meri-Harmsour in Alexander Land through Victoria Island and the White Island to the Northeast Land in the Svalbard archipelago . The area of ​​the Barents Sea, located east of the island of Kolgaev, is called the Pechora Sea.


The shores of the Barents Sea, especially Spitsbergen, Norway and parts of Novaya Zemlya, are mainly fjord: high, rocky and severely rugged. The northern coasts are mainly icy (thermal abrasion), they occur mainly in the Franz Josef Land, the northern part of Nowa Ziemia and the Northeast Land. There is a slightly greater variation on the southern shores. In the western part of the Kolski peninsula, the banks are strongly fragmented by funnel-shaped river estuaries, while the lower eastern part has more even edges. On the peninsula of Can