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The Atmosphere

Weather and Climate: Chapter One

TermDefinition
weather the condition of Earth's atmosphere at a particular time and place.
atmosphere the layer of gases that surrounds Earth.
nitrogen the most abundant gas in air; about 78% of dry air
oxygen the second most abundant gas in air; about 21% of dry air
carbon dioxide a gas used by plants to create food.
water vapor water in the form of a gas.
air pressure a force that is the result of the weight of a column of air pushing down on an area.
mercury barometer an instrument used to measure air pressure using liquid mercury.
aneroid barometer an instrument used to measure air pressure without the use of a liquid.
altitude elevation above sea level.
troposphere the lowest layer of Earth's atmosphere; where weather occurs
stratosphere the second-lowest layer of Earth's atmosphere; the ozone layer is located in the upper stratosphere
mesosphere the middle layer of Earth's atmosphere; the layer where most meteoroids burn up
thermosphere the outermost layer of Earth's atmosphere; consists of the ionosphere and exosphere
ionosphere the lower part of the exosphere; electrically charged particles called ions are found here
exosphere the outer layer of the thermosphere; extends outward into space
aurora borealis a colorful, glowing dispaly in the sky caused when particles from the sun strike oxygen and nitrogen atoms in the ionosphere; (Think: Northern Lights)
climate the average, year-after-year conditions of temperature, precipitation, winds, and clouds in an area.
Created by: wtr6thscience