97 of earths atmosphere lies within 30 km of the

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97% of Earth’s atmosphere lies within 30 km of the Earth’s surface Chapter 3: The Earth’s Global Energy Balance Key Terms Electromagnetic radiation:  wave-like form of energy radiated by any  substance possessing heat; it travels through space at the speed of light o All surfaces—from the fiery Sun to the skin covering our bodies— constantly emit radiation o Sometimes, radiation is emitted as light
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o Cooler objects (than the Sun), such as Earth and our bodies, emit  thermal radiation o Hot objects emit more energy than cooler objects Emission:  process in which bodies release radiation that subsequently  travels through space Wavelength:  the distance separating one wave crest from the next wave  crest o Radiant energy can exist at any wavelength o Wavelength is measured in micrometers Millionth of a meter Electromagnetic waves:  differ in wavelength through their entire rage, or  spectrum o Gamma rays X-rays UV  rays Infrared microwaves radar communications  transmissions (radio and TV) Stefan-Boltzmann Equation:  radiation intensity=constant x T 4 o the flow of radiant energy from the surface of an object is directly  related to the absolute temperature of the surface, measured on the  Kelvin temperature scale, raised to the fourth power Wein’s Law:  wavelength of peak radiation=constant/temperature o The hotter the object, the shorter the wavelengths of its emitted  radiation o The Sun emits radiation at short wavelengths o The Earth emits radiation at longer wavelengths. Absorption:  process in which electromagnetic energy is transferred to  heat energy when radiation strikes molecules or particles in a gas, liquid,  or solid o when atoms, molecules, and particles intercept and absorb  radiation at particular wavelengths o absorption is shown as steep “valleys” in graphs o atmospheric absorption is important because it warms the  atmosphere directly and constitutes one of the flows of energy in  the global energy balance.  o In the case of the ozone, the absorption of shortwave radiation  heats the atmosphere and contributes to the increase of  temperature with height
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o Water vapor and carbon dioxide are the main absorbers Scattering:  process in which particles and molecules deflect incoming  solar radiation in different directions; atmospheric scattering can redirect  solar radiation back to space o May go upward toward space or downward toward the surface o If we look at the sky away from the Sun, the light we see is  scattered light, which tends to be more blue and less red o
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