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Weather and Climate. Chapter 17 and sections of Chapter 9. Atmosphere Composition. Mixture of gases- 78% Nitrogen, 21% oxygen, 1% other gases. The biggest component of the other gases is carbon dioxide-.3%. Oxygen and carbon dioxide are exchanged by photosynthesis and respiration.

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Weather and Climate

Chapter 17 and sections of Chapter 9


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Atmosphere Composition

  • Mixture of gases- 78% Nitrogen, 21% oxygen, 1% other gases.

  • The biggest component of the other gases is carbon dioxide-.3%.

  • Oxygen and carbon dioxide are exchanged by photosynthesis and respiration.


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Atmosphere Formation

  • The early atmosphere had mostly hydrogen and helium. NO OXYGEN!

  • Volcanoes blew those gases from the atmosphere and replaced with different gases which included carbon dioxide.

  • Photosynthesis began to convert carbon dioxide into oxygen.


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Atmosphere Structure

  • The atmosphere is in 4 layers: troposphere, stratosphere, mesosphere, and exosphere

  • In the troposphere, the temperature decreases with altitude and all weather occurs here.

  • In the stratosphere, temperature increases with altitude and the ozone layer is in this layer.



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The atmosphere is heated three ways: radiation, conduction, and convection

Radiation- heating using electromagnetic waves. This is how the sun heats the atmosphere.

Heating of the Atmosphere


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Water in the Atmosphere and convection

  • Water is present in all three states of matter: solid (ice), liquid (rain), and gas (vapor).

  • Water is transferred around the globe by the water cycle.

  • The water is controlled by the sun and gravity.


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Precipitation and convection

Condensation

Evaporation


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Evaporation and convection

  • The process where water is changed into a gas.

  • This process is a cooling process where the temperature will drop.

  • This puts water into the atmosphere.

  • Transpiration is how plants put water into the atmosphere.


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Condensation and convection

  • This process converts water vapor into a liquid.

  • This is a heating process. It gives off heat to the atmosphere.

  • This process makes clouds.


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Precipitation and convection

  • The joining of the condensed water molecules in the clouds to form drops.

  • When the drops get large enough, it rains, sleets, snows, hails, or a combination of these.


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Cloud formation and convection

  • There are 3 main types of clouds:

  • Cirrus- high clouds- wispy and feathery looking. Composed of ice

  • Cumulus- puffy clouds- usually form when warm air is forced upward.

  • Stratus- layered- form where warm and cool air meet.


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Weather and convection

  • Weather patterns result from global patterns of wind and pressure.

  • Global winds are caused by the heating and cooling of air.

  • The most important to the US are the westerlies (winds from the west) and the trade winds (winds from the east).


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High and Low Pressure Atlantic side.

  • Earth’s heating controls the pressure.

  • The areas of low pressure have a rainy climate, like the equator.

  • Areas of high pressure have dry climates like deserts.


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Air Masses and Fronts Atlantic side.

  • There are large masses of air above the land and the water.

  • North American Air Masses

  • These masses meet along front lines.

  • Each type of front has different weather patterns associated with it.


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Types of Fronts Atlantic side.

  • Cold- cold air pushes warm air up violently- Causes severe weather.





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Tornadoes Causes rain.


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Climate Causes rain.

  • Climate means the long-term average of weather conditions—wind, temperature, precipitation, moisture, and other aspects of weather.


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Causes of Climate Causes rain.

  • Latitude- distance from the equator helps determine temperature and amount of light

  • Temperature- average temp determines the types of plants that can survive

  • Distance from ocean- the closer to the water the more constant the climate. Affected by global winds


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Types of climates at equator.

  • Three major types: cold, semi-arid (dry), and arid


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Climate Changes at equator.

  • Cycles of glaciations, called ice ages, represent long-term climatic change

  • Last ice age-18,000-22,000 years ago

  • Changes in Earth’s orbit are the most important factors, producing changes that determine the rhythmic cycles of glaciation.


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Human Influences at equator.

  • Humans may be speeding up the process by releasing pollution that changes the climate faster than the cycle.

  • The excess carbon is from burning fossil fuels and removing vegetation.

  • Other gases like methane and nitrogen oxides are also released by humans.


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Affects of human activities at equator.

  • Global warming- proposed theory that humans are increasing the natural rate of temperature change. Main cause carbon dioxide.

  • Ozone thinning- pollutants that destroyed ozone. These pollutants are now banned and the ozone layer is slowly recovering.


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Explore Weather at equator.


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