the atmosphere key terms Flashcards

Terms Definitions
Upper limit
WEATHER occurs here
the outermost atmospheric layer
the meteorological conditions: temperature and wind and clouds and precipitation
Factors of weather include temperature, cloud cover, wind speed, wind direction, __________, and air pressure.
Smog, Photochemical
light and fossil fuels
albedo- values for different surfaces
any instrument that measures atmospheric pressure
the outermost layer of Earth's atmosphere
most abundant gas in the atmosphere
Amount of space something takes up
inner section of the thermosphere where the Aurora Borealis is created
As Altitude Increases
Pressure and Density Decrease
gas >> liquid (at dew point)
What is kinetic energy?
the transfer of heat energy through collisions of the atoms or molecules of a substance
a long steep-sided depression in the ocean floor
upper boundary of the troposphere in which the temperature remains almost constant
The layer of the atmosphere that protects us from meteoroids.
What is the actual temperature profile of the troposphere called?
how do winds flow?
high to low (pressure)
The fraction of the incident sunlight that is reflected.
What type of clouds and precipitation would you expect with a cold front?
The movement of air caused by differences in air pressure
the direct transfer of energy through space by electro magnetic waves
Electromagnetic radiation
radiation consisting of waves of energy associated with electric and magnetic fields resulting from the acceleration of an electric charge. THE SUN :)
Convection Cell
Any place where convection currents occur.
a measurement of how rapidly or slowly molecules move around
the height of a object above the earths surface
What does the shallowest layer have?
The most mass
in the N hemisphere cyclones rotate ______
counter clockwise
how much matter there is in an object
tropical savanna (Aw)
poleward of tropical margins; distinct temp and precip seasonality
mercury barometer
A barometer that uses the expanding property of mercury to measure air pressure. p. 26
increase in altitude
decrease in density of the air
Nitrous oxide
The production of fertilizers and the combustion of fossil fuels and wood has increased concentrations of this gas. A pollutant in the atmosphere(laughing gas)
Natural processes: sudden changes
naturally occurring: volcanos, forest fires, desert sand, pollen from vegetation, salt spray from ocean
man-made: pollution from burning of fossil fuel for energy, driving automobiles, careless habits
Latent Heat
Heat energy that is absorbed when water changes to water vapor and stored in the water vapor.
what is the layer of atmosphere where there are the most air particles?
Coriolis effect
three air circulation patterns in each hemisphere
3 factors that affect wind
pressure-gradient force, Coriolis force, friction
water vapor is a
source for clouds, rain and snow
form of oxygen that has 3 oxygen atoms in each molocule instead of 2
Layers of the Atmosphere
Categorized by changes in temperature, altitude, and pressure
Water Vapor
water in the state of a gas; invisible
land breeze
low pressure on land is rising when its hot, sea breeze has high pressure & is falling/low when cold
Transfer of energy by the flow of a heated substance
bottom of the zone marks the top of the troposphere and the beginning of another layer
Acid Rain
rain containing acids that form in the atmosphere when industrial gas emissions (especially sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxides) combine with water
What is a psychrometer?
instrument used to find the dewpoint.
Provisions of the Atmosphere
the atmosphere provides oxygen for our respiration, pressure for our bodies to function, protects us from meteors and harmful radiation, and maintains favorable temperatures
Name the two main gases in the atmosphere, state their relative percentages.
nitrogen 78%
oxygen 21%
angle of isolation
the angle that the sunlight makes as it strikes the earth's surface
What is Relative Humidity?
The comparison between the amount of moisture in the air with the amount the air can actually hold at that temperature
what is photochemical smog?
brown haze of ozone that collects in sunny cities. formed by the action of sunlight on pollutants such as hydrocarbons and nitrogen oxides.
Polar Air Mass
A cold air mass that forms in a high-latitude source region.
How does the presence of greenhouse gases affect the temperature of a planet?
The increased amount of greenhouse gases in the planet's atmosphere disrupts the planet's energy balance by inputing more heat than outputting, causing the planet to become warmer.
Which is made completely of ice crystals?
Cirrus: high clouds composed of ice crystals,
appears fibrous and silky
explain how cold fronts & warm fronts are formed.and weather paterns for each.
cold front:a cold air mass moves quickly under a warm air mass, causing the warm air to rise rapidly.example:tornados,high winds,thunderstorms
warm front:a warm air mass moves quickly above a slower cold air mass. example:rain&clouds
Which of the following statements best explains why dew forms on an object?
An object is colder than the dew point temperature of the air surrounding it, causing water vapor to condense as liquid water onto the object.
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