The study of the composition or dynamics of the gaseous layers around planets. See also [Earth Science Stack Exchange](http://earthscience.stackexchange.com).

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11
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4answers
28k views

Why does the road look like it's wet on hot days?

Often, I'll be driving down the road on a summer day, and as I look ahead toward the horizon, I notice that the road looks like there's a puddle of water on it, or that it was somehow wet. Of course, ...
-1
votes
0answers
26 views

Good explanation of phase transitions, second law of thermodynamics [duplicate]

I am looking for a good explanation (website, book, video,...) of phase transitions. I am interested in atmospheric applications (so basically condensation, etc. of water in air). I would like an in ...
3
votes
2answers
29 views

Function to fit solar radiation data

I have ground-level radiation data of solar incoming radiation from a radiometer (cosine collector) measured along the day. In the following plot you can see PAR irradiance (ie visible light) in Watts ...
1
vote
1answer
44 views

Can refraction of the atmosphere be so high that the surface of a planet seems concave to its inhabitants?

In their novel Inhabited Island by brothers Strugatsky, the inhabitants of a planet think they live on the inner surface of a giant sphere because the refraction of the atmosphere makes the surface ...
25
votes
2answers
3k views

Why is the sun brighter in Australia compared to parts of Asia?

Background: I've lived in Philippines for several years, and visited other parts of Asia occasionally (Singapore, Indonesia, Hongkong). I just moved to Western Australia a few months ago and I ...
1
vote
1answer
39 views

If you were able to get rid of Hydrogen from a weather balloon as it were rising and expanding would the weather balloon rise further than usual?

I know that the weather balloon will eventually be stopped because of the atmosphere no longer being buoyant but would the balloon be able to go farther than it regularly would?
2
votes
2answers
182 views

Loopy lightning

What causes lightning to follow the path it does ? picture from BBC news: http://news.bbcimg.co.uk/media/images/62891000/jpg/_62891901_untitled-1copy.jpg main page: ...
0
votes
1answer
101 views

Motion of elevating airplane

I wonder how the motion of an airplane which will not try stop to elevate should look like. Of course, at some point the plane will no longer be able to go to higher altitudes but is it going to stay ...
0
votes
0answers
22 views

Which is the most accurate way to model the fundamental atmospheric parameters of the Earth?

I need to calculate the fundamental atmospheric parameters, I mean the actual ones, this is not an exercise but a model for a real world application so I need to take account of the humidity of air. I ...
11
votes
2answers
345 views

How are the northern lights produced?

Although I've never seen it myself, I hear the northern lights are a sight to be seen! I know they're related to the Earth's magnetic field but I don't know much more about them. What is the physical ...
0
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0answers
30 views

Cause and properties of northern lights [duplicate]

If outside on a dark night in the middle to high latitudes, one might be able to see an aurora. It may be several hundred kilometers high and several thousand kilometers long, stretching around Earth ...
2
votes
2answers
68 views

Do we hear sounds differently on the highest mountains?

Some searching gives that above 6,000 meter altitude the air density is less than half of that at sea level. Speed of sound is about 15-20% slower and "acoustic impedance" seems to change too. Do ...
1
vote
2answers
94 views

Expression for Atmospheric Pressure with Altitude, including Tidal Forces

Is this simple to obtain? I've tried to modify the constant-gravity model to use the $GM/r^2$ form instead, but my result was shown to be wrong with some testing. Constant Gravity Model You can ...
6
votes
2answers
65 views

Stratospheric ship

Let's assume that we build a giant steel hull in a shape of cube with open top (2km long edge) and lift it to the top of stratosphere and then pump air out of it. Would it float on the outer layer of ...
1
vote
2answers
2k views

Ascent rate and size of balloon

I am part of a school project, Project Stratos to send a balloon to the edge of space (the closer side :P) and was wondering how you would work out the accent rate of a large balloon (roughly 1m^3 of ...
2
votes
4answers
499 views

Would the rate of ascent of an indestructible balloon increase as function of it's altitude?

Assume a balloon filled with Hydrogen, fitted with a perfect valve, and capable of enduring vacuum (that is to say, it would retain it's shape and so well insulated that the extremes of temperature at ...
9
votes
4answers
10k views

How does carbon dioxide or water vapour absorb thermal infra red radiation from the sun?

We are all told at school water vapour and carbon dioxide are the top two greenhouse gases, and that they absorb thermal infra red radiation, trap heat and warm up the Earth. My question is how do ...
0
votes
2answers
42 views

How laminar or turbulent is air?

Consider an outdoors scenario, with good weather and no sensible air currents at the floor level. How turbulent or laminar is the air surrounding this environment?
1
vote
1answer
23 views

The atmosphere's water vapour capacity

If enough energy was supplied, could all liquid water on Earth evaporate into the atmosphere? Could the atmosphere hold this much water vapour? Would the pressure and density increase as a result?
0
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2answers
23 views

speed of gas molecules when they escape to space

I wonder if the escape velocity of gas molecules is the same as the one of rockets, which is 7.8km/s. And do oxygen escape at all or not? Are they too heavy?
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votes
1answer
32 views

How can I get average numbers of days wind flow from 16 direction? [closed]

Wind flow from North direction a nos. of days, Similarly from North East b nos. of days, East c nos. of days, South East d nos. of days, South e nos. of days, South West f nos. of days, West g nos. of ...
-1
votes
1answer
48 views

Determine the number of days with North-East wind direction from the number of days with North and East wind direction? [closed]

I have some data like: Wind flow from north direction = “X” Numbers of days. Wind flow from east direction = “Y” Numbers of days. Then is there any formula to know numbers of days wind flows ...
5
votes
2answers
85 views

How hot is aurora?

Has anyone done research on how hot aurora is? I mean if it is plasma it should be hot and since it is emitting mostly green light due to nitrogen (~78%) in the air, could it then be considered that ...
0
votes
0answers
24 views

Variance of daylight over short periods of time?

I've searched various publication archives but I'm a signal processing engineer and not an applied physicist, so I might not be using the right terms. While I can find various average values for the ...
1
vote
2answers
63 views

What is the maximam distance of light that is released by a flashlight?

Recently I looked at the cloudy night sky and noticed a pale green color light moving around the clouds for about 20 min.After observation I came a conclusion that it is probably because of a light ...
6
votes
4answers
94 views

Bulk flow of air in a long tube between Antarctica and Australia?

I have a 5km diameter clear plastic tube which is open at each end and runs from the center of Antarctica to Lake Eyre in Australia. The tube is on the ground where it can be and at sea level on the ...
1
vote
1answer
21 views

Meteorite hunters Search for FIREBALLS

normally meteorite hunters search for fireballs....but they totally ignore meteor showers . why so? as far as i can think meteors in meteor showers are usually produced by small particles so they ...
10
votes
5answers
823 views

Can low-gravity planets sustain a breathable atmosphere?

If astronauts could deliver a large quantity of breathable air to somewhere with lower gravity, such as Earth's moon, would the air form an atmosphere, or would it float away and disappear? Is there a ...
0
votes
1answer
31 views

Is it possible to more cloud-layers go to different ways on the sky

Sometime when I see the sky I see that the cloud-layers go to different ways. But how is it possible?
3
votes
3answers
191 views

Why $e$ in the formula for air density?

I am reading a book that says that the density of air is approximately $D = 1.25 e^{(-0.0001h)}$, where h is the height in meters. Why is Euler's number $e$ used here? Was a differential equation ...
15
votes
3answers
3k views

Does a man on the moon experience day?

Does a man on the moon (or any other similar body) experience daytime like we do? By daytime I mean looking upward and seeing a bright "sky," not dark space. If not, then what is the reason behind ...
1
vote
0answers
46 views

What kinds of reactions happen when bubbling air through water?

Mostly I have seen air bubbling used to remove impurities in the water itself, like exemplified in this course packet. This is called "Sparging," but I have yet to learn much about transfer between ...
15
votes
2answers
952 views

Why does my infrared thermometer say the sky is at -2 °C?

I just got myself an infrared thermometer. I wouldn't have been able to predict what temperature it would give me when pointing at the sky, but it turned out to be -2 °C the first time I measured, and ...
29
votes
9answers
6k views

Why can't we see gases?

I am not sure what causes gas molecules to be invisible.This question may look silly but I really want to know the story behind it.
3
votes
1answer
45 views

Why formation of rain is adiabatic?

I recently went through the wikipedia page for Rain. It said that There are four main mechanisms for cooling the air to its dew point: adiabatic cooling, conductive cooling,.... It proceeds as ...
0
votes
1answer
22 views

What is the purpose of sensors and pumps with less than 1 ATM pressure?

This question is not directly a physics questions, though related a little. Previously for sensors, and currently for air pumps, I am doing some research. I have found a digital pressure sensor on ...
4
votes
4answers
8k views

How can I calculate Vapor Pressure Deficit from Temperature and Relative Humidity?

I have a series of measurements of temperature and relative humidity (RH), together with mosquito capture data. Because mosquitoes are sensitive to desiccation, it's reasonable that RH may be useful ...
1
vote
1answer
19 views

Decompression speed (rate)

I've heard that decompression speed or rate in which the gas will leave the greater pressured container is equal to the speed of sound. For example, if the spacecraft gets damaged the air cannot exit ...
7
votes
2answers
1k views

Why is getting a tan in the evening less likely than getting a tan in the morning?

When I was young I read one book in which is written that you get more tan on the morning than on evening even light angle from Sun to Earth is the same. Don't remember exact reason, I think because ...
0
votes
1answer
47 views

Launching a unpropelled rocket

I have read about the application of railguns and other ground powered launch, where there is no need to carry any propellant in the rocket. I am wondering, to what velocity should the vehicle ...
1
vote
2answers
51 views

Creating a atmosphere bubble in space with electromagnetism

would it be possible to contain an atmospheric bubble in space with a magnetic field, and wouldn't doing so protect it from solar radiation also?
0
votes
0answers
30 views

Help with vacuums?

Okay, here is my understanding. Please correct me if anything here is incorrect. Suppose I have a cube with a side length of ten inches. It has a surface area of 600 square inches, and at an ...
0
votes
3answers
62 views

Latent heat of condensation

Regarding atmospheric processes, I understand that energy is required to evaporate water by moving molecules further apart i.e. a phase change from liquid to gas. The air then ascends into the ...
8
votes
2answers
201 views

Why do clouds fly? [duplicate]

I know it's probably the most stupid question there is, but why do they fly are the clouds lighter than air? What's keeping those tiny ice structures floating miles about the ground? I've been looking ...
20
votes
1answer
997 views

Can rain evaporate?

Are there any atmospheric condition under which a visible raindrop can fail to hit the ground by evaporating first? I imagine this would require a large vertical temperature difference, and possibly ...
19
votes
3answers
811 views

Are the air particles in today's wind on earth (more or less) the same as the air 2/3 billion years ago?

So the air pressure on earth remains relatively constant, right? Is there air gained or lost through transitions of any sort? e.g. plumes going out into space, earth gaining new air particles with ...
3
votes
1answer
49 views

California “firenados”

There are spectacular rotating towers of fire that can be seen in recent television images of fire in California. In this video, we see that these fire towers can rotate either clockwise or counter ...
0
votes
1answer
70 views

Magnetic hot air balloon [duplicate]

Normally, hot air balloons are limited to 60,000 ft (related question), the limits being the mass of the physical structure containing the air, and the heat source. If one constructed a magnetic ...
1
vote
1answer
44 views

What is the height of different layers of the atmosphere?

I have a confusion regarding the height of different layers of atmosphere. I have searched for this in some books but the information varies.
1
vote
2answers
52 views

Does the ice melt faster when breaks free from larger sheet and drops into Antarctic Ocean waters?

My question is, when Ice is intact with the large sheet and exposed only to air, it melts at some pace. But does it melt faster or slower when the big piece breaks free from the sheet and drops into ...