The atmosphere protects Earth from harmful solar radiation and regulates heating provided by the Sun. In this blog, let us learn about the importance of atmosphere.
Importance of Atmosphere
1. The first function is made possible by ozone existing in the stratosphere, the second function is achieved by a mix of gases existing in the whole atmosphere called �greenhouse gases�.
Ozone accumulating in the stratosphere (called �stratospheric ozone�) is crucial for the survival of life on Earth as it constitutes a sort of natural screen for a part of solar radiations that are invisible to humans and are located in the ultraviolet region (frequency from 100 to 400 nm).
If these radiations reached the soil they would cause genetic mutations, skin tumors, and many other damages to flora and fauna.
2. Moreover, stratospheric ozone plays a fundamental role in the formation of clouds and rain as it heats up and blocks water vapor in the lower layers of the atmosphere.
Greenhouse gases, instead, are responsible for the heating of the lower atmosphere and Earth�s surface. The characteristic of these gases, in fact, is being transparent to light radiations (short-wave) coming from the Sun and absorbing thermal radiations (long-wave) emitted and diffused on Earth�s surface.
As panes in a greenhouse, they allow the entrance of solar light radiations but intercept thermal radiations coming back from Earth�s surface, thus keeping high the temperature in the lower atmosphere.
The most important greenhouse gas is water vapor which, alone, manages to make the atmospheric temperature rise by about 30�C. In order of importance follows carbon dioxide (CO2), methane (CH4), nitrogen oxides (NOx), and ozone (O3).
3. Half of the Earth's atmosphere is contained in the troposphere, which is the first layer above the surface. This layer is where weather develops.
4. Because the stratosphere is so stable, many jet planes fly there. In addition, the ozone layer absorbs the Sun's harmful radiation.
5. In the mesosphere, meteors or rock particles burn up.
6. The thermosphere is an auroral layer. It is also the location of the space shuttle's orbit.
7. In the exceedingly thin exosphere, the atmosphere merges with space. This is our atmosphere's top limit.
8. One of the most significant functions of the atmosphere is to keep the Earth's temperature constant. Temperatures on the moon, which lack a protective atmosphere, can range from 121 degrees Celsius (250 degrees Fahrenheit) during the day to negative 157 degrees Celsius at the night (negative 250 degrees Fahrenheit). Radiation and cosmic rays are absorbed by the atmosphere, which acts as a shield.
9. The atmosphere also performs a vital role as a conduit for water transport. Vapour rises from the oceans, condenses when it cools, and falls as rain, supplying life-giving moisture to continents that are otherwise dry.