Layers Of The Atmosphere

By: Shekinah Arrington

The atmosphere of Earth is a layer of gases surrounding the planet Earth that is retained by Earth's gravity.The atmosphere protects life on Earth by absorbing ultraviolet solar radiation.Their are 5 layers of the atmosphere.They are the exosphere, thermosphere, mesosphere, stratosphere, and troposphere.

The exosphere is 300 miles above sea level. It extends out into space.The very top of the exosphere is marked as 6,200 miles above sea level. As the outermost layer of the atmosphere, the exosphere is where a lot of space weather happens and is our first line of defense against cosmic rays, earthbound meteors, and asteroid impacts. The temperature of the exosphere varies, depending on whether you are look at the "day" side of the Earth, or the "night" side.

This is the thermosphere. It is the layer before the exosphere. This is where the Aurora Borealis or Northern Lights appear. It is located between the mesosphere and the exosphere. This layer is where space shuttles travel. The air is very thin in the thermosphere.and a small change in energy can cause a large change in temperature. Thats's why the temperature is so sensitive to solar activity. When the sun is active, the thermosphere can heat up to 1,500 degrees Celsius (2732 F).

The Mesosphere starts at 50 km above ground and goes up to 85 km above the ground. It is right above the stratosphere and right below the thermosphere. The top of the mesosphere called the mesopause is the coldest part of the whole atmosphere. It is very cold, most meteors burn upin this layer when approaching Earth.

This is the stratosphere. This is the second letter of the atmosphere. There is very little moisture in it and it has a complex wind system, Planes prefer to fly through here due to the lack of weather in it. Bacterial life can survive in the stratosphere, making this layer apart of the biosphere. The stratosphere has a special layer in it called the ozone layer which helps block ultraviolet rays from reaching Earths surface. It is heated by the ozone layer.

This is the troposphere. It is the last layer and is the one the closet ti the Earth. It ranges from 5 to 11 miles in thickness. Almost all of Earth's weather takes place in this layer. It contains almost all of the atmospheric water vapor. The temperature in the troposphere also decreases with height. As you climb higher, the temperature drops from 62 F to -60 F.

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