The actual change of temperature with height varies from day to day, depending on the weather.The troposphere contains about 75% of all of the air in the atmosphere, and almost all of th… International Space Station astronauts captured this photo of Earth's atmospheric layers on July 31, 2011, revealing the troposphere (orange-red), stratosphere and above. Earth also emits radiation back into space, but at longer wavelengths that we cannot see. https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Atmosphere_of_Earth&oldid=996991205, Wikipedia indefinitely semi-protected pages, Short description is different from Wikidata, Wikipedia articles needing clarification from February 2016, Articles needing additional references from October 2013, All articles needing additional references, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, Exosphere: 700 to 10,000 km (440 to 6,200 miles), Thermosphere: 80 to 700 km (50 to 440 miles), Stratosphere: 12 to 50 km (7 to 31 miles). The troposphere ends abruptly at the tropopause, which appears in the image as the sharp boundary between the orange- and blue-colored atmosphere. Weather occurs in this layer. Many substances of natural origin may be present in locally and seasonally variable small amounts as aerosols in an unfiltered air sample, including dust of mineral and organic composition, pollen and spores, sea spray, and volcanic ash. [41] A major part of carbon-dioxide emissions dissolved in water and reacted with metals such as calcium and magnesium during weathering of crustal rocks to form carbonates that were deposited as sediments. ", Solar radiation (or sunlight) is the energy Earth receives from the Sun. It ranges from about 500-1000 km up to 10,000 km. On average, the temperature gradient of the troposphere is 6.5°C per 1,000 m (3.6°F per 1,000 ft.) of altitude. Thus air pressure varies with location and weather. These are the highest clouds in the atmosphere and may be visible to the naked eye if sunlight reflects off them about an hour or two after sunset or similarly before sunrise. hottest layer of Earth's atmosphere, where the International S…. The troposphere layer extends from the Earth’s surface to a height between 4 and 12 miles (6 and 20 kilometers). The stratosphere extends from the top of the troposphere to... Mesosphere. It is not to be confused with, Gas layer surrounding Earth: Mostly nitrogen, uniquely high in oxygen, with trace amounts of other molecules, Two recent reliable sources cited here have total atmospheric compositions, including trace molecules, that exceed 100%. Air pollution is the introduction into the atmosphere of chemicals, particulate matter or biological materials that cause harm or discomfort to organisms. This is the lowest part of the atmosphere - the part we live in. This layer is mainly composed of extremely low densities of hydrogen, helium and several heavier molecules including nitrogen, oxygen and carbon dioxide closer to the exobase. The geological record however shows a continuous relatively warm surface during the complete early temperature record of Earth – with the exception of one cold glacial phase about 2.4 billion years ago. The troposphere is the lowest layer of our atmosphere. The density of the atmosphere decreases outward, because the planet’s gravitational attraction, which pulls the gases and aerosols inward, is greatest close to the surface. Temperature decreases with altitude starting at sea level, but variations in this trend begin above 11 km, where the temperature stabilizes through a large vertical distance through the rest of the troposphere. When light passes through Earth's atmosphere, photons interact with it through scattering. You have guessed it, high temperatures are the name of the game here. [10] The study of historic atmosphere is called paleoclimatology. It contains the ozone layer, which is the part of Earth's atmosphere that contains relatively high concentrations of that gas. It could get colder by 6.5°C per kilometer. This is the first and the lowest layer of Earth’s atmosphere. The ozone layer absorbs the UV radiation of the sun and increases the temperature of this layer. [18] Because the thermopause lies at the lower boundary of the exosphere, it is also referred to as the exobase. It houses free-moving particles that may migrate from the magnetosphere. 99.99997% is below 100 km (62 mi; 330,000 ft), the, This page was last edited on 29 December 2020, at 14:31. the upper limit of the atmosphere). The atmosphere thins out in … [26] The troposphere is denser than all its overlying atmospheric layers because a larger atmospheric weight sits on top of the troposphere and causes it to be most severely compressed. Exosphere is the upper limit of the atmosphere. In general, air pressure and density decrease with altitude in the atmosphere. Breakdown of pyrite and volcanic eruptions release sulfur into the atmosphere, which oxidizes and hence reduces the amount of oxygen in the atmosphere. This is why the sky looks blue; you are seeing scattered blue light. This is also why it becomes colder at night at higher elevations. Molecules of free oxygen did not start to accumulate in the atmosphere until the rate of production of oxygen began to exceed the availability of reducing materials that removed oxygen. Beyond the exosphere is outer space. The troposphere is the lowest layer in the atmosphere. These fluctuations in oxygenation were likely driven by the Lomagundi carbon isotope excursion.[44]. Objects tend to emit amounts and wavelengths of radiation depending on their "black body" emission curves, therefore hotter objects tend to emit more radiation, with shorter wavelengths. However, polar stratospheric or nacreous clouds are occasionally seen in the lower part of this layer of the atmosphere where the air is coldest. However, non-hydrometeorological phenomena such as the aurora borealis and aurora australis are occasionally seen in the thermosphere. The constant re-arrangement of continents by plate tectonics influences the long-term evolution of the atmosphere by transferring carbon dioxide to and from large continental carbonate stores. Humans have also contributed to significant changes in atmospheric composition through air pollution, especially since industrialisation, leading to rapid environmental change such as ozone depletion and global warming. The three major constituents of Earth's atmosphere are nitrogen, oxygen, and argon. Within the five principal layers above, that are largely determined by temperature, several secondary layers may be distinguished by other properties: The average temperature of the atmosphere at Earth's surface is 14 °C (57 °F; 287 K)[29] or 15 °C (59 °F; 288 K),[30] depending on the reference.[31][32][33]. [47] The following time span from 541 million years ago to the present day is the Phanerozoic Eon, during the earliest period of which, the Cambrian, oxygen-requiring metazoan life forms began to appear. It is thickest near the surface and thins out with height until it eventually merges with space. Depending on solar activity, satellites can experience noticeable atmospheric drag at altitudes as high as 700–800 km. Published by Thomson Brooks/Cole, 2005. At the equator it can reach 12 miles (20 kilometers), and at the poles it reaches about 4 miles (6 kilometers). Filtered air includes trace amounts of many other chemical compounds. The large-scale structure of the atmospheric circulation varies from year to year, but the basic structure remains fairly constant because it is determined by Earth's rotation rate and the difference in solar radiation between the equator and poles. the height of an object or point in relation. However, volcanic eruptions also release carbon dioxide, which plants can convert to oxygen. Meteors begin to glow in this region, though the larger ones may not burn up until they penetrate more deeply. The air is so rarefied that an individual molecule (of oxygen, for example) travels an average of 1 kilometre (0.62 mi; 3300 ft) between collisions with other molecules. If the entire mass of the atmosphere had a uniform density equal to sea level density (about 1.2 kg per m3) from sea level upwards, it would terminate abruptly at an altitude of 8.50 km (27,900 ft). Of all the atmosphere's layer's, the troposphere is the one we're most familiar with (whether you realize it or not) since we live at its bottom -- the Earth's surface. The word is derived from ancient Greek exo meaning ‘outside’ or ‘external’. Water vapor is also present, almost all of it below a height of about 8-15 km/ 4.9 – 9 mi. The exosphere is located too far above Earth for any meteorological phenomena to be possible. Another layer, called the ionosphere, extends from the mesosphere to the exosphere. About 3.4 billion years ago, nitrogen formed the major part of the then stable "second atmosphere". Although the temperature may be −60 °C (−76 °F; 210 K) at the tropopause, the top of the stratosphere is much warmer, and may be near 0 °C.[23]. There are four major layers of atmosphere above the Earth that are separated by temperature. The stratosphere is the second-lowest layer of Earth's atmosphere. commercial airliners typically cruise between 10 and 13 km (33,000 and 43,000 ft) where the thinner air improves fuel economy; weather balloons reach 30.4 km (100,000 ft) and above; and the highest X-15 flight in 1963 reached 108.0 km (354,300 ft). There were probably simple hydrides such as those now found in the gas giants (Jupiter and Saturn), notably water vapor, methane and ammonia. to sea level or ground level. The air here is extremely thin, and the conditions here are more similar to the ones we find when we leave the Earth’s atmosphere entirely. The air in this layer is absolutely not friendly for us, as it would be impossible to breathe in the mesosphere because of too low oxygen levels. water vapor. Various industrial pollutants also may be present as gases or aerosols, such as chlorine (elemental or in compounds), fluorine compounds and elemental mercury vapor. Stratosphere layer is free from any weather associated air turbulence. The amount of oxygen in the atmosphere has fluctuated over the last 600 million years, reaching a peak of about 30% around 280 million years ago, significantly higher than today's 21%. Troposphere. The troposphere is the lowest layer of Earth's atmosphere. Earth is approximately 290 K (17 °C; 62 °F), so its radiation peaks near 10,000 nm, and is much too long to be visible to humans. Earth’s atmosphere is divided into five primary layers: Troposphere, Stratosphere, Mesosphere, Thermosphere and the Exosphere. This layer extends from the top of the troposphere at roughly 12 km (7.5 mi; 39,000 ft) above Earth's surface to the stratopause at an altitude of about 50 to 55 km (31 to 34 mi; 164,000 to 180,000 ft). The atmosphere of Earth is a layer of gas above the crust. This layer contains hydrogen and traces of helium, carbon dioxide and atomic oxygen… In this … Learn about the layers of the atmosphere: the troposphere, stratosphere, mesosphere, thermosphere, and exosphere, as well as about the ionosphere. The images are taken from the Deep Space Climate Observatory (DSCOVR) and show Earth as it rotates during a day.[51]. stratosphere. The surface-based homosphere includes the troposphere, stratosphere, mesosphere, and the lowest part of the thermosphere, where the chemical composition of the atmosphere does not depend on molecular weight because the gases are mixed by turbulence. Because the general pattern of the temperature/altitude profile, or lapse rate, is constant and measurable by means of instrumented balloon soundings, the temperature behavior provides a useful metric to distinguish atmospheric layers. It has basically all the weather-associated cloud genus types generated by active wind circulation, although very tall cumulonimbus thunder clouds can penetrate the tropopause from below and rise into the lower part of the stratosphere. [50], On October 19, 2015, NASA started a website containing daily images of the full sunlit side of Earth on http://epic.gsfc.nasa.gov/. It lies above the troposphere and is separated from it by the tropopause. The troposphere contains roughly 80% of the mass of Earth's atmosphere. They are most readily visible when the Sun is around 4 to 16 degrees below the horizon. The greenhouse effect is directly related to this absorption and emission effect. The geomagnetic storms cause displays of aurora across the atmosphere. "Air" redirects here. Atmospheric pressure is the total weight of the air above unit area at the point where the pressure is measured. In this way, Earth's atmosphere can be divided (called atmospheric stratification) into five main layers. (D) Water vapor is about 0.25% by mass over full atmosphere The atoms and molecules are so far apart that they can travel hundreds of kilometers without colliding with one another. Earth's atmosphere has changed much since its formation as primarily a hydrogen atmosphere, and has changed dramatically on several occasions—for example, the Great Oxidation Event 2.4 billion years ago, greatly increased oxygen in the atmosphere from practically no oxygen to levels closer to present day. For example, the Sun is approximately 6,000 K (5,730 °C; 10,340 °F), its radiation peaks near 500 nm, and is visible to the human eye. Much of the blue light has been scattered out, leaving the red light in a sunset. It goes all the way to 10,000 km above the Earth's surface. Part of the incoming and emitted radiation is absorbed or reflected by the atmosphere. Troposphere. Even above the Kármán line, significant atmospheric effects such as auroras still occur. Starting at ground level, it extends upward to about... Stratosphere. This part of the atmosphere is … However, the aurora borealis and aurora australis sometimes occur in the lower part of the exosphere, where they overlap into the thermosphere. For example, the radio window runs from about one centimeter to about eleven-meter waves. It is this layer where many of the satellites orbiting the earth are present. The OZONE layer is located at the top of the stratosphere. The Troposphere The troposphere is the lowers layer of the atmosphere, nearest to the earth’s surface. The temperature of the thermosphere gradually increases with height and can rise as high as 1500 °C (2700 °F), though the gas molecules are so far apart that its temperature in the usual sense is not very meaningful. A jacket for the planet Earth is a great planet to live on because it has a wonderful atmosphere around it. 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