The Typical Vertical Structure of The Atmosphere – Assignment Example

The paper "The Typical Vertical Structure of The Atmosphere" is a good example of an assignment on environmental studies. The atmosphere consists of four layers: troposphere, stratosphere, mesosphere, and thermosphere. The lowest part of the atmosphere, troposphere, occupies 10-15 km, where 4/5 of the total mass of the atmospheric air is concentrated. The troposphere contains almost all water vapor of the atmosphere. The turbulence is well developed there, especially near the surface. The air pressure on the upper edge of the troposphere is 5-8 times less than near the surface. So, the main mass of the atmospheric air is concentrated exactly in the troposphere. All the processes, which take place there, are very important for the weather and climate. There is a stratosphere above the troposphere. It lays up to 50-55 km. Starting with the height of 25 km, the temperature grows fast with the height. It causes the small rate of the turbulence. The stratosphere contains a small amount of water vapor. The mesosphere is situated above the stratosphere. It lays up to 80 km. The temperature falls with the height there. It can fall to several tens degrees below zero. That’s why the turbulence is well developed there. On the upper edge of the mesosphere, the air pressure is 200 times lower than near the surface. The highest part of the atmosphere, thermosphere, is characterized by a very high temperature. The temperature can vary greatly on the different levels depending on the degree of solar activity. This atmospheric layer is always in the ionized state. The thermosphere reaches 800 km. It is subdivided into the ionosphere and exosphere. Because of the growth of pressure with height, there are some important physiological flight effects. The oxygen concentration in the atmosphere is proportional to total atmospheric pressure. Also, the concentration of the oxygen declines with altitude in the same way as total pressure. As for density, it decreases with altitude. If it is low, the aircraft performance degrades. It happens because performance depends on the mass of the atmosphere. That’s why the density is of special importance in aviation applications.