Properties of Air (1)

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EARTH’S ATMOSPHERE: Properties of Air:

EARTH’S ATMOSPHERE: Properties of Air

Slide2:

The Earth’s Atmosphere: Properties of Air Earth is covered by a blanket of air called the atmosphere . The atmosphere begins at the Earth’s surface and extends over 600 miles into space. Let’s investigate the properties of air and the structure and dynamics of the Earth’s atmosphere! Air is a mixture of gaseous elements and compounds. These include nitrogen, oxygen, water, argon, and carbon dioxide. Surprisingly, the element nitrogen makes up the largest proportion of Earth’s air. Although air appears invisible to us, it has mass and takes up space like other types of matter. Because of this, air exerts pressure. The air surrounding the Earth is held in place by gravity . Gravity pulls the air toward the Earth’s surface giving the air its weight. Air pressure is the weight of a column of air pushing down on a portion of the Earth’s surface. As you move up into the atmosphere the air pressure decreases. This is because at higher altitudes there is less air pushing down from above. Air pressure is similar to what happens when a clerk fills a bag of groceries at the supermarket. Let’s say that she puts your loaf of bread on the bottom, then she adds your chocolate cake, and on top she places a jar of spaghetti sauce. When you arrive home, you will probably find that the bread has been flattened by the weight of the cake and sauce, the cake has a few minor dents from the jar of sauce, and the jar of sauce is undamaged. Items closer to the bottom of the bag feel the weight of all of the items above them. When an item is placed higher in the bag, there is less weight pressing down on it from other items. The air in our atmosphere works the same way. Air near the surface of the Earth is under greater pressure because of the weight of the air above it.

Slide3:

Earth is covered by a blanket of air called the atmosphere . The atmosphere begins at the Earth’s surface and extends over 600 miles into space.

Slide4:

Let’s investigate the properties of air and the structure and dynamics of the Earth’s atmosphere!

Slide5:

Air is a mixture of gaseous elements and compounds. These include nitrogen, oxygen, water, argon, and carbon dioxide. Surprisingly, the element nitrogen makes up the largest proportion of Earth’s air. Oxygen makes up the second largest portion of air.

Slide6:

Although air appears invisible to us, it has mass and takes up space like other types of matter. Because of this, air exerts pressure.

Slide7:

The air surrounding the Earth is held in place by gravity . Gravity pulls the air toward the Earth’s surface giving the air its weight. Air pressure is the weight of a column of air pushing down on a portion of the Earth’s surface.

Slide8:

As you move up into the atmosphere the air pressure decreases. This is because at higher altitudes there is less air pushing down from above.

Slide10:

Air pressure is similar to what happens when a clerk fills a bag of groceries at the supermarket. Let’s say that she puts your loaf of bread on the bottom, then she adds your chocolate cake, and on top she places a jar of spaghetti sauce. When you arrive home, you will probably find that the bread has been flattened by the weight of the cake and sauce, the cake has a few minor dents from the jar of sauce, and the jar of sauce is undamaged. Items closer to the bottom of the bag feel the weight of all of the items above them. When an item is placed higher in the bag, there is less weight pressing down on it from other items. The air in our atmosphere works the same way. Air near the surface of the Earth is under greater pressure because of the weight of the air above it.

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