Definition The layer of gases surrounding Earth; composed mainly of nitrogen and oxygen
Troposphere • This is where all plants and animals live and breathe • Where weather takes place • Air is mixes • T decreases with altitude http://atschool.eduweb.co.uk/kingworc/departments/geography/nottingham/atmosphere/pages/gfx/troposphere.jpg
Ozone Layer • Pale blue gas with a strong odor. • 90% of all ozone is found in the stratosphere • 10% is found in the troposphere • Ozone is extremely important because it is the only gas that absorbs ultraviolet radiation from the Sun and protects the surface of the Earth and people from the damaging effects of UV rays http://ess.geology.ufl.edu/ess/Notes/090-Ozone_Depletion/depl2.jpg
Stratosphere • Ozone in this layer stops many of the sun's harmful rays from reaching the earth • People can not breathe in this layer.
Mesosphere • T decreases with altitude • This is where we see "falling stars" – meteors burning up as they fall to Earth
Thermosphere • Layer of the atmosphere which is first exposed to the Sun's radiation and so is first heated by the Sun. • The air is very thin • The temperature dependent on solar activity.
Ionosphere • An extension or a part of the thermosphere. So technically, the ionosphere is not another atmospheric layer. • Free electrons and ions tend to recombine
Exosphere • Highest layer of the atmosphere. The air is very thin here • Atoms and molecules escape into space
Let’s look at an animation: http://earthguide.ucsd.edu/earthguide/diagrams/atmosphere/index.html