An oceanic current which flows in an east-west direction in the equatorial regions of all the oceans. The broad (1000–5000 km) westward-flowing currents (North and South Equatorial Currents) are separated by a comparatively narrow eastward-flowing countercurrent (the Equatorial Counter-current). The flow tends to be limited to the upper 500 m of the water column and the velocity is 25–100 cm/s. The strength and position of the equatorial currents are controlled by the overlying wind system.
Subjects: Ecology and Conservation — Earth Sciences and Geography.