Questions tagged [atmosphere]

The gaseous envelope surrounding the *Earth*, and retained by the Earth's gravitational field. If your question is about the atmosphere on another celestial body or is more astronomy related, please ask on Astronomy.SE.

Filter by
Sorted by
Tagged with
8
votes
1answer
614 views

How is the radiative efficiency of a given gas (like a given CFC) analytically calculated?

E.g. the gases listed at http://www.ipcc.ch/publications_and_data/ar4/wg1/en/tssts-2-5.html . Do they calculate them analytically or theoretically?
8
votes
1answer
490 views

What factors determine the height of the turbopause?

The turbopause separates (by definition) the homosphere from the heterosphere. What factors cause the turbopause to be where it is? Is it affected by mesopheric composition, solar irradiance, global ...
8
votes
2answers
85 views

Are there any effects on the atmosphere comparable with ebb and flood of the oceans?

Due to the attraction of our moon (and Sun) our oceans undergo an up and down movement every day. So the water rises or falls by a couple of meters. But does this type of effect also occur with our ...
8
votes
1answer
382 views

Where did the atmosphere's nitrogen come from? [duplicate]

According to Wikipedia's article Atmosphere of Earth: Outgassing from volcanism, supplemented by gases produced during the late heavy bombardment of Earth by huge asteroids, produced [Earth's ...
8
votes
4answers
235 views

Where did all the CO₂ come from that was deposited as coal during the Carboniferous?

During the Carboniferous, vast deposits of coal (or peat at that time) were created because – as far as I understand – decomposition of wood (white rot?) was not yet "invented" at that time. This ...
7
votes
1answer
470 views

Pressure as a function of altitude

My city's altitude is almost 950 meters, yet the weather stations provide a read of 102.14 kPa which is around 1 atm! Shouldn't the pressure be a function of elevation? I doubted that the data ...
7
votes
2answers
94 views

Will a country that cares for its environment be affected by climate change due to other countries' activities?

Let's say my country is very environment conscious, has lots of trees and animals, protects the forest, uses clean/green energy, and has all kinds of environment friendly policies you can imagine. ...
7
votes
3answers
13k views

How does Earth's heat escape to space?

I know that if the sun stopped shining, Earth would lose it's heat and we'd all freeze and die. On the other hand, we don't keep increasing temperature when the sun shines because heat escapes to ...
7
votes
1answer
1k views

Golden and red colored light even after sunset

I heard about the golden hour, but yesterday I saw golden and red colored patches in the sky even after sunset. Why does it happen? And I would like to know more about the science behind the golden ...
7
votes
1answer
243 views

Why is the upper atmosphere brighter than the lower atmosphere in some photos from space?

In most photos from space, the atmosphere gradually fades away from pretty bright blue to essentially black, as you move away from the Earth surface, such as can be seen in this photo of the Earth ...
7
votes
1answer
7k views

How to calculate the temperature of Earth's surface

From a dissertation, I read about the greenhouse gas's effect which make the surface warmer. It says, I quote: The greenhouse effect results in an average surface temperature of approx. $14^\...
7
votes
1answer
1k views

What causes smog to clear up on some days?

I notice that in my town sometimes the pollution/haze/smog sticks around on some days but then on others the sky can be completely clear. I don't necessarily see any difference between windy and non ...
7
votes
1answer
1k views

Why do the dry and moist adiabatic lapse rates converge with height?

Near the surface, the slope of the moist adiabats are much steeper than dry adiabats due (as I understand it) to the the latent heat released as water vapour condenses. The difference is amplified at ...
7
votes
2answers
430 views

How large can local surface CO2 concentration vary due to natural processes?

I'd like to have a rough idea of how large local surface CO2 concentration vary due to natural processes. For example, a purely hypothetical experiment: If I set up some CO2 monitors in a wide ...
7
votes
2answers
5k views

How can we calculate the temperature of the atmosphere, including the greenhouse effect?

I've been struggling to find equations that express how many degrees of warming greenhouse gases contribute, given the composition of an atmosphere (and solar insolation). What I did find was the ...
7
votes
1answer
212 views

Persistence time of ozone

Ozone is formed in the upper atmosphere by ultraviolet light, and broken down by ultraviolet, spontaneous reactions and artificial pollutants among other things. Suppose there were no artificial ...
7
votes
1answer
113 views

How will climate change affect planetary waves?

You can see planetary/rossby waves in the meanders of the jet stream. In short: If an air parcel moves from warm subtropics towards the pole, it will deviate toward the east due to conservation of ...
7
votes
1answer
122 views

What causes the semi-annual mesospheric meteoric potassium variability?

In a recent study presented in the article First global observations of the mesospheric potassium layer (Dawkins et al. 2014), space-borne resonance fluorescence observations confirmed previous LIDAR ...
7
votes
1answer
177 views

Is there an atmospheric hydrogen cycle?

There are various physical, chemical and biological processes that free up hydrogen from molecules (often hydrocarbons or water). Once in the atmosphere, the hydrogen is lost to space (the Earth's ...
7
votes
2answers
873 views

Why does the emission of aircrafts at higher altitudes have a greater effect on the climate?

I am trying to understand the footprint of a flight. First Wikipedia says (without quoting a source): The level and effects of CO2 emissions are currently believed to be broadly the same ...
7
votes
1answer
234 views

Can the clouds on Venus and Titan be categorized in the same way as clouds on Earth?

E.g. are the clouds on Venus (and Titan) cumulus, stratus, cirrus, or some other type that isn't found on Earth?
7
votes
1answer
293 views

Difference between sulfuric clouds and sulfuric haze (on Venus)?

In a conversation in comments below this answer to the question in Space Exploration Could we see the surface of Venus after the explosion of a H-bomb in its atmosphere? we're speculating about what ...
7
votes
1answer
117 views

Would a global cooling event disable solar energy usage?

Imagine that we've improved the level quality, affordability, and ease of use of photo-voltaic solar, and it's use is widely distributed in the USA. We've improved the grid for power distribution, we ...
7
votes
2answers
949 views

Why is at high altitude more light from oxygen in the auroras while it is heavier than nitrogen?

In an other recent question is said that because of diffusion and thermal causes oxygen and nitrogen are mixed. Nevertheless oxygen is a little bit heavier than oxygen so it should be lower in the ...
7
votes
1answer
273 views

What is the mass of our planet's atmosphere, hydrosphere, and cryosphere combined?

What is the mass of our planet's atmosphere, hydrosphere, and cryosphere combined? How accurate can our estimates be?
7
votes
1answer
410 views

What ozone depleting chemicals can salt produce?

According to How Long Will Life Last On Earth, 250 million years ago Siberia underwent a large a prolonged period of volcanic activity. It has been speculated that large salt deposits that existed in ...
7
votes
1answer
162 views

Is there a 'standard size' for volcanic eruptions in terms of gas output?

We saw recently the Iceland volcano Eyjafjallajökull produced significant gaseous output that impacted the flight paths of several planes. When we look at volcanic gas components, we see they ...
7
votes
2answers
299 views

Why is the mass of atmosphere of Venus so much greater than that of the Earth?

Earth and Venus have a very similar gravity, but the mass of atmosphere on Venus is much greater (according to this wikipedia article 93 times larger). I know that the chemical composition and ...
7
votes
1answer
1k views

Why is the skyline hazy on the Greek islands?

I've recently been to Crete, Santorini and am currently on Ios. I've noticed that there is a hazy-ness when I look out on the sea: there's no definitive line where sky meets sea, they just blur ...
7
votes
1answer
271 views

At what altitude do winds exert the most force?

Imagine I want to make a floating wind turbine like the Altaeros BAT, which is tethered and uses helium. What would be the best height to keep such a device deployed? I know that wind velocity ...
7
votes
1answer
363 views

What's the prospect of air quality forecasting based on machine learning?

Air quality forecasting models which are useful for atmospheric scientist and government can be built based on numerical theory or statistic theory. The first approach outline the basic physics ...
7
votes
1answer
169 views

Strangely bright morning twilight over Switzerland

Yesterday morning (04.11.2014) I woke up at 6:40 as usual and noticed that it was relatively bright out. I had a better look around 7 and concluded that it was definitely quite a bit brighter than it ...
6
votes
3answers
4k views

Why are deserts hotter than other places on Earth

We all know that deserts are the hottest places on Earth, but what makes them different from other parts of the world?
6
votes
1answer
291 views

What is the explanation of using pressure units (hPa) to express height when dealing with wind speeds?

I am trying to understand how prevailing winds and jet stream currents are formed and how they are varying in speed and direction. When looking at different wind speeds at different altitudes on ...
6
votes
2answers
2k views

Equation for solar radiation at a given latitude?

I'm trying to find equations that would help me determine the amount of solar radiation hitting a certain latitude on a certain planet given the following inputs: the degrees of latitude of the ...
6
votes
1answer
87 views

Relative Humidity approximation from Dew Point and Temperature

I would like to find a formula to approximate RH based on known air temperature and dew point. I need the approximation to be valid at least between -20...+40 degrees Celsius. I read the accepted ...
6
votes
1answer
221 views

Is this particular multiple rainbow unexplained by science?

The gist of the BBC News article 'Incredibly rare rainbow' photographed in Highlands is that while it has several familiar features, there are aspects that are still unexplained. Question: Are there ...
6
votes
1answer
1k views

How to locally identify a cold front passage?

I know that the passage of a cold front affects local conditions by decreasing the temperature and shifting the winds. Some precipitation could happen as well. How do software that analyze weather ...
6
votes
2answers
825 views

Take all the CO2 in the atmosphere and put it into a layer on the surface of earth, how thick would the layer be?

I teach a Middle School (year 8) Geometry course and have a student attempting to answer this question. My assumptions: earth's radius is $3959 \text{ mi}$ earth is a sphere There is approximately $3 ...
6
votes
1answer
410 views

The difference of vertical advection and convection process for chemistry species

In atmospheric, the change of mixing ration $C_i$ of a chemical species $i$ is determined by: $\frac{\partial C_i }{\partial t} = -\bigtriangledown (VC_i)+\frac{\partial }{\partial z}(k_z\...
6
votes
1answer
190 views

How does temperature impact the elevation distribution of orographic precipitation?

Consider the case of two weather systems of different temperatures hitting the Andes Mountains from the west: After traveling a long distance over the Pacific ocean I would expect the air in both ...
6
votes
2answers
5k views

How to distinguish between Altocumulus, Stratocumulus and Cumulus clouds?

There are four different categories of clouds. High clouds, medium altitude clouds, lower clouds, and vertical tall clouds. They are broken down into ten genuses of clouds: Cirrus, Cirrocumulus, ...
6
votes
1answer
1k views

Why are most cirrus clouds present over the equator and over tropical continents?

As quoted from the AR5 IPCC report (chapter 7) here. Most high cloud (mainly cirrus and deep cumulus outflows) occurs near the equator and over tropical continents, but can also be seen in ...
6
votes
1answer
118 views

Are certain isobar temperatures higher in mountainous regions?

So we know that the air temperature at higher elevations is lower. But is the air temperature at a certain isobar over, say Vail, Colorado, higher than the air temperature of the same isobar over, say,...
6
votes
1answer
88 views

What is the characteristical time of the loss of the Earth atmosphere, how can it be calculated?

Somewhere I've read it is in the order of some tens of billions of years, but unfortunately I can't find any reference with it in Google. I suspect, the losses are coming mainly from analyzing the ...
6
votes
2answers
130 views

Is pollution a contributing factor to freezing rain?

I have been to different places with nearly the same freezing temperatures, around -2°C, but only at some specific places I repetitively experienced freezing rain. One common factor at these places ...
6
votes
1answer
196 views

If the atmosphere is (very nearly) an ideal gas, how can it ever be barotropic?

A barotropic fluid is a fluid whose density is a function of pressure only, i.e. $\rho=\rho(p)$. My understanding is that, in the atmosphere, in general, the tropics are barotropic whereas the ...
6
votes
1answer
1k views

Is there a way to calculate the ground and 10m temperature from standard 2m temperature measurements?

I am wondering if it is possible at all to calculate the ground temperature and air temperature at 10m above ground from 2m measurements, or at least using data that a standard weather station ...
6
votes
3answers
291 views

What are the conditions for an ionosphere to form?

I already asked this on Astronomy SE but did not receive any answer so far: What are the prerequisites for an ionosphere to form? For example, can a planet without any atmosphere have an ionosphere? ...
6
votes
2answers
1k views

How will climate change affect the latitudinal distribution of precipitation over each latitudinal region?

In other words... How will it affect precipitation in the tropics? The mid-latitudes? And the polar latitudes? I'm interested in both the mean and variance of the precipitation.

1 2 3
4
5
11