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Flashcards in Ch. 1 - The Atmosphere Deck (15)
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What is the atmosphere

The envelope of air between the earths surface and space


What is the sphere closest to the earths surface



How much of the atmosphere does nitrogen constitute



How much of the atmosphere does oxygen constitute



Greenhouse effect

Carbon dioxide and other waste gases have the ability to trap heat so the excessive amounts may warm the atmosphere


Importance of ozone

It filters out much of the harmful UV rays


Where does most of the weather/turbulence occur

Lower portion of the troposphere, where the water content is markedly greater


What is the tropopause

Egg-shaped division line between the troposphere and stratosphere


Shape of the tropopause

Higher over the equator and lower over the poles


Reason of tropopause shape

The density of air is higher over the poles and lower over the equator, less dense air takes up more room so, therefore, the columns of air must be taller in the tropic regions.


Size difference between the troposphere and stratosphere

Stratosphere is twice as high


Stratosphere features

Very little air, no moisture so therefore no clouds


Where is the ozone formed and where does it settle

Forms at the top of the stratosphere and settles towards the lower region of the stratosphere


Difference in surface air tempreture

Surface air temperature is determined largely by solar energy concentration. The given width of a solar beam onto the equator concentrates its energy over a small area whereas a similar beam striking the polar region spreads its energy over a far larger area. This is because of the angles at which the suns rays impinge on the earth's surface. The sun shines vertically onto the equator but strikes the polar regions at an oblique angle


Temperature difference at the tropopause

The tropopause is colder over the equator, this is because the column of air is taller and therefore because temperature decreases with altitude there will be a much larger temperature drop. Even if allowance is made for warmer surface temperatures in the tropics, the greater loss in the warm column means that it is colder