geog - Exercise 4: The Atmosphere, Hydrosphere, and Air...

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Exercise 4: The Atmosphere, Hydrosphere, and Air temp variations Part I: the Atmosphere - it is relatively transparent w/respect to shortwave radiation, and is heated from below by longwave radiation from the earth’s surface Troposphere: - temp decreases with height - 12 km up - All life and weather, 80% of mt everest (9km) warm air rises, overturning) Tropopause- temp is constant w/height, isothermal layer Stratosphere- increased O3 in height - temp increases in height - stratopause at 45km mesosphere - temp decreases w/height, meso pause at 80km Thermosphere: above mesopause, temp very difficult bc air is so thin - has no top, contains less than .01% of the total gasses in atm Hydrosphere: 97.6% water in oceans and salt lakes 1.9 in ice .5 subsurface water Poleward of about 38* - more NRG emitted to space than absorbed by solar radiation Between 38N and 38S most absorbed by solar radiation Balance between this must have a net poleward transport of energy - afforded by atmospheric motion (evap of water vapor in tropics and rain in higher lat) - and surface ocean currents - tilt of earth leads to a more uniform distribution of energy as well Ocean is heated from above - keeps it stable surface layer - constantly stirred by wind, is isothermal, average depth 60-75m - deeper in tropics than polar layer surface mixed layer (epilimnion of a lake) - relatively warm, all surface currents exist - nearly all interaction b/t ocean and atm thermocline: temperature decreases w/depth - rapid change in both temp and salinity deep ocean water: (hypolimnion of lake)
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-cold, does have an important circulation but not well understood ( remove CO2 from atm and store for long time?) Part III: Annual/Diurnal Variations in Air temp: Greater over land than water bc: 1. specific heat of water is greater than the specific heat of land, so water takes longer to heat up and longer to cool down 2. more evaporative cooling over water so that it does not reach as great a temp as the land 3. convective turning in the liquid water allow for the energy to be mixed throughout upper mixed layer 4. water surface is semi-transparent, so energy penetrates the surface of the water and is absorved over the upper layer rather than at the surface of the soil Annual/diurnal range in air temp is freater in texas than Bermuda (same altitude) - max and min annual temps lag the solar radiation by one month over land (late july and late jan) - two months over water and coastal regions (late august and late feb) due to delayed effects of the solar radiation input Diurnal Cycle: -min air temp is just after sunrise - surface has been radiatiating energy all night - shortly after sunrise, sun heats the earths surface and temp rises. - Increase in temp continues till 3 when turbulent mixing forces warm bubbles to
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This note was uploaded on 10/28/2009 for the course GEOG 101 taught by Professor Lavin during the Fall '08 term at University of Delaware.

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geog - Exercise 4: The Atmosphere, Hydrosphere, and Air...

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