The study of the composition or dynamics of the gaseous layers around planets, often applied to questions on Earth's atmosphere but can be applicable to all planets & moons in the solar system.

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dry adiabatic lapse rate

Adiabatic lapse rate is defined as $$ \Gamma_a \equiv -\left(\frac{dT}{dz}\right)_{\rm parcel}=-\frac{R_{\rm a} T}{c_p \,p}\left(\frac{dp}{dz}\right)_{\rm parcel} = \frac{g}{c_p} $$ $R_a$ is gas ...
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91 views

Is climate change caused by humans? [closed]

Some people argue it is not because it is caused by solar cycles (sometimes the sun brights more than others thus increasing the Earth's temperature) and that the energy that $CO_2$ traps isn't enough ...
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what is the relation between heat capacity and mixing ratio

I am supposed to derive an expression for the specific heat capacity $c_p$ for air with a water vapour mass mixing ratio of $\mu$. The hint is: (Use the fact that $c_p= (\frac{\partial H}{\partial ...
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How do stars from far away affect Earth?

I know that we obviously get light (or we wouldn't be able to see them), but are there any other ways that they affect Earth and maybe just our solar system in general?
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Faster alternative to travel to any location in the west? [closed]

Suppose one needs to travel to Somalia from Indonesia(which are approximately at a distance of $4000$ miles from each other on the line of equator). To accomplish this task, I suggest the following ...
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46 views

Weight of an air column - what am I doing wrong?

We know that the density of water is 1000 $kg/m^3$ and that of air is 1.225 $kg/m^3$. If I were to calculate the pressure of air at a square at sea level of area 1 $m^2$ in newtons, I'd need the ...
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213 views

How loud would a sound have to be to be heard around the world?

I'm reading the book Cosmos by Carl Sagan, and in it he states: Striking the Earth's atmosphere, a modest cometary fragment would produce a great radiant fireball and a mighty blast wave, which ...
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117 views

Can I cook an egg by holding it in thermosphere?

It is known that in thermosphere, air temperature is rising sharply with increase of altitude. In upper atmosphere, temperatures can even reach 2000°C or higher: see 2. However, air there is ...
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What is wind chill a function of?

When the weather report includes a wind chill, was that value experimentally determined by sampling the conditions on the day of the report? Or was it calculated from other data? If so, what do you ...
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481 views

Is apparent horizon curvature lesser due to refraction of light in the atmosphere?

I have encountered this claim while searching for sources answering " Can we see the curvature of earth from the top of world's tallest building? ". Wikipedia article on horizon claims (with no ...
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573 views

Why Earth's atmosphere behaves like an ideal gas?

In every book I found this sentence like an assumption, without explananions, somebody can help me understand it better?
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146 views

What confines atmosphere around earth?

Exactly the title. There needs to be a pressure to prevent gases from perpetually expanding, right? Bear with me, I'm not a physicist or studying to be one.
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How to estimate wind speed from a pressure difference?

Does a formula (or a rule of thumb) exist to estimate the wind speed between a high pressure area and a low pressure area given the pressure difference between the two areas? Only the wind resulting ...
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Is the Air Blue? [duplicate]

Randall Monroe, a credible source in my opinion, says that the sky is blue because the air is: Normal light interacts with the atmosphere through Rayleigh scattering. You may have heard of ...
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38 views

How can condensation be aided?

I was wondering if certain factors of water vapor condensation can be aided? For example, being able to increase the saturation of water vapor via a certain method, or another example would be having ...
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5answers
80 views

Extract energy from the atmosphere? [closed]

Let's say we would fill a long tube with water. Let's say the tube is 1km in height. At the bottom of this tube, the pressure should be much higher than the top. Also, the tube would lead into a ...
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158 views

Why is the speed of sound lower at higher altitudes?

At sea level the speed of sound is 760mph, but at altitudes like the Concorde would fly at (55,000ft) the sound barrier is at 660mph, so 1000th slower. Does it have to do with lower pressure?
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How much gravity (and/or magnetic field) would a space ship need to generate to hold an atmosphere around it? [duplicate]

Say you wanted a ship to have a bubble of atmosphere around it, 800m in diameter with the ship at the center. What sort of gravity (and perhaps magnetic field) would be needed? Would either of these ...
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76 views

Why lightning most likely occure in night?

This is a question based on my experience. I am not going to prove that lightning (succeed by thunder) never occure in day, but it seems it most likely occure in night. May the humidity of air become ...
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141 views

How is it possible that Thermosphere can maintain so much heat? [closed]

Thermosphere is the Layer of Atmosphere in approx 100-1000 km altitude. Particles in thermosphere are typically at 1400 K temperature. But the sun activity can raise the temperature up to 2300 K. ...
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136 views

Compression vs. Friction - what happens when space objects enter earth's atmosphere

When reading about what happens when cosmic debris enters the earth's atmosphere, some sources say friction, others say compression. For example: On space.com it says: Meteor showers occur when ...
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3answers
160 views

Pressure inside a closed room

I am sitting inside a closed room with a cement ceiling just above my head. The pressure of the atmosphere is exerted on the ceiling from above(outside). But solid cement not being a fluid does not ...
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1answer
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Can we consider light from the Sun during sunrise and nightfall as polarised?

On sunrise and nightfall light looks different, more orange or more dark. Some frequencies are filtered or light travels longer. The energy corresponding to this light is obviously lower than light ...
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194 views

Whirlwind/tornado/dust devil in the middle of nowhere

I live in area which have many properties similar to desert. Many times when I drive by I see a whirlwind/tornado/dust devil of sand or other garbage parts. I would like to ask how this was normally ...
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374 views

What is the critical mass of a planet to have an atmosphere like Earth's? [closed]

Small planets/orbits like Moon cannot have atmosphere because of their masses. They don't have enough gravity to hold an atmosphere. Then what is the critical mass that makes enough gravity to keep an ...
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How atmospheric pressure affects liquid but not solid? [duplicate]

The barometer indicates a difference in elevation of liquid mercury level due to the effect of atmospheric pressure. For 1 square cm of surface the atmospheric pressure exerts what is equivalent to ...
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Why does the sun “shine brighter” some days?

Today, the sun seems extremely bright; more dazzling than usual, and even the roads seem to be brighter so it's not just when you look up in the sky. Is more light actually getting through (perhaps ...
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Atmospheric pressure's effect on sound

An argument has been travelling in amongst my friends around this matter and after listening about it for 3 whole days I decided to ask it here. The Question is: Would a high atmospheric pressure ...
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83 views

How does moisture exist in atmosphere?

Moisture is the water vapor in air surrounding us where the temperature is 25 degrees Celsius (say). But the water exists as vapor only above 100 deg C at a pressure of 1 atm. Then how does moisture ...
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Atmospheric science and gas laws [duplicate]

If warm air exerts low pressure, then how could both temperature and pressure at surface of the earth is higher than at higher altitudes?
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Why is the surface of Venus so hot?

Whenever I have seen Venus described, its high surface temperature is attributed to an intense greenhouse effect. This seems to make sense, as its atmosphere is roughly 96% CO2. But on Earth, the ...
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7answers
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How to keep a helium balloon between 1 to 5 meters above ground? (without it being tied)

I understand that helium balloons rise because their density is less than air, so they can rise up to a point where the air surrounding it has the same weight as the balloon. I was thinking to fill it ...
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106 views

Adiabatic expansion in the atmosphere

When an air parcel rises and cools adiabatically, it is said that there is no heat transfer as work is done on the surrounding atmosphere as the parcel expands. The parcel loses internal energy and ...
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What would happen to the Earth's atmosphere if all the solar radiation was in the extreme ultraviolet?

According to this, our Earth's atmosphere is completely opaque to radiation with wavelengths less than 100 nm as this radiation has enough energy to ionize the air. Since the surface temperature of ...
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Here's a fun question, what would happen if Venus was thrown off in a highly elliptical orbit? [closed]

I'd like to know what would happen if Venus was flung into a highly eccentric orbit like Sedna (except maybe with its current perihelion) with an orbital period measured in thousands of years by a ...
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Green light in the satellite image

What could be the possible reason for the green border visible in this satellite image ? (Image source)
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Long-Life High Altitude Balloon

Normally high-altitude balloon experiments end with the balloon popping and the payload falling back down to be reclaimed. But if a second balloon was attached to the payload, one which was only ...
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4answers
771 views

Why is the sky blue: For a 3-year old [duplicate]

My nephew asked me yesterday why the sky was blue. I tried to explain it to him as best and as dumbly I could, but I failed. I tried to explain the concept of scattering of light using an analogy of ...
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Why can't I see the blue color scattered by the lower atmosphere of the earth?

I understand that the blue colour of the sky is because of the scattering of blue light by molecules in earth's atmosphere. The scattering appears to be happening from molecules that are far above in ...
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Relative magnitudes of pressure gradient force and Coriolis force at midlatitudes

In the midlatitudes, both Coriolis and pressure gradient forces are present in the atmosphere. Can a statement be made about which one of the two forces is bigger in this region?
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Temperature of a falling meteor

I am reading "What if?" article https://what-if.xkcd.com/20/ and I'm interested in it's scientific background. Mr. Munroe writes: As it [the meteor] falls, it compresses the air in front of it. ...
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How can we see through our atmosphere [duplicate]

Apologies for the simpleton question, but how exactly can we see objects around us if our atmosphere is made up of a vast amount of nitrogen, oxygen, carbon dioxide and myriad other such atoms and ...
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How come gas molecules don't settle down?

If the earth's gravity exerts a net downward gravitational force on all air molecules, how come the molecules don't eventually lose their momentum and all settle down? How is the atmosphere is still ...
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Can we reduce a hurricane's power using wind turbines?

Below is the abstract of an article in Nature: Taming hurricanes with arrays of offshore wind turbines, describing computer simulations that indicate that wind turbines could disrupt a hurricane ...
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How much of the Earth's atmosphere is visible from its surface

If I observe a meteor streak across the sky, how can I estimate the length of its trail in kilometres, given say its approximate height of 15km from the surface, and its apparent length of a quarter ...
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Atmosphere model

Im working on project where I should simulate glider soaring. The goal is to create gliders that will look for regions with hot upwinds using evolution algorithms. That shouldn't be problem. What I ...
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Weather forecasting with coffee bubbles

The other day I saw this life-hack: And I was wondering how true it is. First of all, I always thought(listening to weather forecasts) that low-pressure atmosphere is what correlates with rain; ...
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Mathematical approaches to atmospheric refraction

Understanding atmospheric refraction, particularly of ultraviolet, and into the blue part of the visible spectrum is of great interest to me. Although, I have a strong background in trigonometry and ...
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Atmospheric Tides effect on atmospheric pressure

Regarding the atmospheric tides effect on the pressure, this answer (and the referenced sources) seem to point that such effect is very small. However, this pressure prediction graph for my hometown ...
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How does a change in temperature affect relative humidity

Assume that the air pressure and the amount of water in the air stay constant. How can I figure out how much a change in temperature affects the relative humidity?