Air and Atmosphere



The Earth’s Atmosphere

“People have walked on the surface of the moon. Machines have landed upon and scratched at the surface of Mars.  Rockets have carried satellites on photographic missions into the darkness of space beyond the farthest reaches of our solar system. These voyages of exploration represent great leaps that took the minds – and sometimes even the bodies – of humans far from the comforts of their earthly home. 

Yet, people forget that Earth too is a wondrous planet on a fantastic voyage. In just one year’s time Earth will make a complete trip around the sun – taking you, your family and friends, and the remainder of humanity on a fabulous journey. In many ways, Earth is like a giant spacecraft transporting a special cargo of life.

Why is Earth the only planet in our solar system uniquely able to support life? In this WebQuest, you will learn about the Earth’s atmosphere – the special envelope of air that surrounds our planet home as it journeys through space. The atmosphere is one reason there is life on Earth.”  Simon and Schuster, Exploring Planet Earth, Prentice Hall Science, 1993 

The information so far provides a snapshot of what Atmospheric Scientists do and how spectacular our Earth's exsistence is. As you go through the WebQuest, you will be expected to inquire about the atmosphere and how it pertains to you and our environment. The following objectives will be investigated.

                                     1. Composition of the atmosphere

                              2. Layers of the atmosphere

                              3. Clouds and their effect on weather

                              4. Patterns of atmospheric movement

                                 5. Heat transferences: conduction, convection and radiation

You will need to complete the activities requested and do the worksheet packet. You will be expected to research the experimental labs activities to follow. A formal lab report write up will be required for one of the lab activities.

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