Facts on Convection Currents

••• Comstock/Comstock/Getty Images

Convection currents are one of three ways heat is transferred. Convention currents can transfer heat in a liquid or a gas but not in a solid.


Convection currents are circular patterns that arise from the unequal heating and cooling of a fluid (gas or liquid).


A convection current requires a heat source and a fluid that can circulate to transfer heat. In the atmosphere, the heat source is the sun and the fluid is air. Inside the Earth, the heat source is the core and the fluid is magma.


Convection currents can move large masses of solids, liquids or gases via the circulating fluid. This can have a significant effect on the weather.


Convection currents are responsible for the movement of tectonic plates on the Earth's crust, the production of wind in the atmosphere, and the production of ocean currents.


Liquids and gases are poor conductors of heat. Convection currents are the most effective way of transferring heat through liquids and gases. A space heater or radiator placed at one end of a room can heat the entire room by utilizing convection currents.

Related Articles

Extract Your Own DNA and More With These Awesome Science...
About Minor & Major Landforms
How to Calculate CFM to MPH
How Does Pressure Affect Wind?
The Effects of Human Intervention on the Environment
How Do Ocean & Wind Currents Affect Weather & Climate?
How to Calculate the Horsepower of a Compressor
What Does the Mantle of Earth Consist Of?
How Does the Earth Receive Heat From the Sun?
What Is a Centrifugal Blower?
How to Convert GPM to Cooling Rate in Tons
How to Calculate a Circular Area
How to Convert HVAC Tons to Amps
How to Convert PSI to Horsepower
Characteristics of Aquatic Plants
Aquatic Ecosystem Facts
How to Make a Working Heart Model
Three Types of Heat Transfers
Methods for Desalination
What Does the Condensation Process Require?
What Units Does the Anemometer Measure In?