The science that is dedicated to describing the characteristics of our planet is called geography, a term derived from Latin geography which, in turn, has its etymological root in the Greek word geography.
There are various branches of geography, arising from their specific field of action. The physical geography is the one focused on the study of configuration of land spaces and seas.
Also called physiography, physical geography specializes in the natural geographic space, considering the surface of the Land as a set. Their knowledge is complemented by that provided by the human geography (which studies the link between human communities and the environment in which they reside).
Physical geography seeks to contribute to the understanding of the geographic patterns and processes that occur in the natural environment. The oceanography, the orography, the glaciology and the hydrography are some of the fields of study of this geographic subdiscipline. To develop his studies, he resorts to other Sciences, as the physical and the geology.
Below we will look at the aforementioned fields of study in greater detail. The oceanographyFor example, it is nothing more than the study of the seas and oceans, with a focus on their physical, hydrological, economic and biological features. This science is also interested in tides, ocean currents and waves, among other movements of ocean waters. Another major aspect of oceanography is the way in which the seas and oceans influence the hydrological cycle and the atmospheric dynamics, which supposes the foundations of meteorology and, indirectly, of climatology.
The orography, on the other hand, it is defined as the elevations found in a certain area, and also as the description of the same from the scope of the geomorphology. Specialists in this field define the lower limit of the parts of the Earth where the ocean does not reach. The fidelity to the reality of the representation of the land depends directly on the resolution used when dividing it into cells.
With respect to glaciology, contributes to physical geography with his study of the Water in solid state: polar caps, glaciers, ice shelves and icebergs are some of the most common examples. The phenomena that this discipline attends belong to both the present and the past, and cover both its development and its causes, its distribution and its extension.
The hydrography It is easily differentiated from glaciology in that it addresses water in a liquid state, and this includes lakes, rivers and groundwater, as well as their characteristics and properties.
It is important to bear in mind that physical geography studies biophysical issues and the link between these and the actions of the human being. That is why it works with the natural phenomena that occur in the Land and with the interactions that man has with the environment, always starting from a spatial perspective.
Although it can develop historical studies (for example, analyzing how the landscape changes over thousands of years), it also has the ability to focus on the present (detecting and measuring changes in the use of the ground, to cite one possibility).
The main Applications of physical geography take place through the subjects that compose it and can take many forms, depending on the characteristics and needs of each area. Its origins date back to the 3rd century BC. C., although its evolution had a large number of milestones throughout these two millennia.