October 16, 2021

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If everyone on Earth sat in the ocean at once, how much would sea level rise?

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If everyone on Earth sat down in the ocean, how far would the water rise?

– Zahkaev and Viktorere

This article was originally published at The Conversation. The publication contributed the article to Space.com’s Expert Voices: Op-Ed & Insights.

Tony E. Wong, Assistant Professor of Mathematical Sciences, Rochester Institute of Technology

Curious Kids is a series for children of all ages. If you have a question you’d like an expert to answer, send it to CuriousKidsUS@theconversation.com.

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(Image credit: The Conversation)

Hypothetical questions, like what would happen if everyone on Earth went for an ocean swim at once, are fun to think about. And using math, you can get pretty close to a real answer. Let’s start by considering a smaller version of the same question.

Bathtub math



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