air_heat - Atmosphere and gas waste Our atmosphere is made...

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1 Atmosphere and gas waste • Our atmosphere is made up of – 78 % nitrogen (N), – 21% oxygen (O), and – 1% other gases including argon (Ar), water vapour, carbon dioxide (CO2), and others. – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Earth%27s_atmos phere Layers by temperature • The bottom most layer is the densest - this is where weather and other phenomenon like that happen. This is where most of the material of the atmosphere is concentrated. This layer extends up to about 12-15 km. The other layers are separated by how the temperatures changes - either increasing or decreasing with in the layer. The ozone is a separate division with these layers. It extends several kilometers and is at around an altitude of 50 km. • The problem with the ozone layer has nothing to do with global warming – but with chemicals like the CFC’s that can destroy the ozone molecules present here.
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2 Motion in Atmosphere • The other thing about the atmosphere is that it is constantly in motion. • Earth’s atmosphere moves due to 2 main forces (as well as many more localized phenomenon). These are convection and the coriolis force. Six main cells • There are six main convection cells on the planet that will circulate material around the globe The direction and strength of these flows of air decides where any airborne pollution will end up going. Air pollution is a global problem for this reason. Similarly in the oceans there are also currents that will distribute material throughout the oceans and around the globe. Image from ‘Energy it’s use and the Environment 4 th Edition
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3 • Another type of phenomenon that can significantly affect localized pollution levels is something called a temperature inversion. In this situation, a combination of weather, local climate and geography combine to create a situation where a layer of cold air is trapped under a layer of warm air. • This prevents local circulation and can result in very high levels of local pollutants being trapped in this stationary air mass. . Places like London, England and Los Angeles California both suffer regularly from this type of phenomenon. Global Warming • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Global_warming • This is produced by something we refer to as the greenhouse effect. Sunlight is always radiating down on Earth. A certain percentage of this light is simply reflected back into space from clouds, or water or ice, so it affects us very little. Some of the sunlight is also absorbed by the ground or the water and goes from being in the optical part of the spectrum to the infrared -- or as heat. This heat is radiated off the surface, and most of it escapes back into space (Earth actually glows in the infrared). • The greenhouse effect traps this heat within the
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This note was uploaded on 10/20/2010 for the course NATS Nats1840(A taught by Professor M.h.armour during the Fall '10 term at York University.

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air_heat - Atmosphere and gas waste Our atmosphere is made...

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