Questions tagged [oxygen]

Questions regarding the 8th chemical element, a main component of the athmosphere and of the crust.

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Why cannot people burn all the atmospheric oxygen? [closed]

We are told that photosynthesis, developed a couple of billion years ago has produced all the atmospheric oxygen. I wonder, why did the process stop? Why do modern plants prefer to recover the entropy ...
16
votes
2answers
2k views

How is the equilibrium of 21% oxygen in Earth's atmosphere established?

The atmosphere is 21% oxygen. I assume that there must be an equilibrium between processes that produce oxygen (e.g. photosynthesis) and those that consume oxygen (e.g. aerobic respiration). Moreover,...
4
votes
2answers
983 views

Causes of fluctuations in atmospheric oxygen in past 300 Mya

I have two questions based on the history of atmospheric oxygen levels depicted below. Source: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Sauerstoffgehalt-1000mj2.png. The notes below the chart explain ...
1
vote
1answer
321 views

Why limestone formation was not a concern in atmosphere oxidation event? [closed]

I have just got to know why Fe was a problem. After clay (alumnum) and Silicon got oxidized, there has left a lot of unoxidized Fe in the crust, whose oxidization has finished during GOE. But, ferrum ...
8
votes
2answers
34k views

Is oxygen the most abundant element on Earth?

When I was in school, I was taught that we need oxygen to breathe, but it actually constitutes only a small fraction of the atmospheric composition, and that nitrogen constituted the largest fraction ...
5
votes
2answers
411 views

Why did the carboniferous period have so much atmospheric oxygen?

Even if all the carbon dioxide (which makes up less than 1% of the atmosphere) in the air were sequestered by plants, would the atmosphere not remain about 21% oxygen? Why did the carboniferous period ...
4
votes
1answer
140 views

Percentage of Oxgen left after burning all the available biomass

A documentry stated that during the Permian asteroid strike the atmosphere heated up to above 400C, potentially to 600C. As this would ignite most of the biomass, including us, I wondered if this fire ...
3
votes
1answer
228 views

Why is Great Oxidation Event associated with Iron oxidation but not Aluminum or Silicon?

Just to build up on my previous success with oxygen origin in the atmosphere, I want to expand the question as was advised in the answers. The official heresy, despite denied in the comments and ...