Caspian Sea

Caspian Sea

Caspian Sea

The Caspian Sea is the largest lake in the world and accounts for 40 to 44% of the total lacustrine waters of the world. It is bigger than the Great American Lakes and Lake Victoria in Africa by surface area. The sea has a surface area of 371,000 km² (143,200 sq. mi²) and a volume of 78,200 km³ (18,800 cu mi). The 6,397 km coastline is shared by Azerbaijan, Iran, Kazakhstan, Russia, and Turkmenistan of which more than 900 km is along the Iranian side. About 128 large and small rivers flow into the Caspian Sea from Iran, among them the four largest rivers are: Sepidrud, Shalman, Shafarood, and Tonekabon.

The Caspian is divided into three distinct physical regions: the Northern, Middle, and Southern Caspian. Water temperature in the Southern Caspian never drops below 13°C degrees in wintertime, and in summertime it is usually increases up to 25° and even 30° C. However, the Caspian Sea is unique not only because of its size but also as it’s distinct from other lakes, the water of the Caspian is not fresh, but brackish. Therefore the highest salinity level reaches 12.7 ppt (about 1/3 of the ocean salinity) during summers.

The southwestern and southern Caspian shores are formed of the sediments of the Lankaran and Gilan-Mazanderan lowlands, with the high peaks of the Talish and Alborz Mountains rearing up close inland.