profile of the Earth’s atmosphere
Atmosphere: layer of air that surrounds the Earth and is composed mainly of nitrogen (78%) and oxygen (21%); its density decreases with altitude.
Unmanned craft launched in the direction of a celestial body in the solar system for purposes of studying it.
Observation spacecraft placed in orbit around the Earth.
It orbits at an altitude of about 250 mi.
Luminous phenomenon that occurs at high altitudes near the Earth’s poles.
Luminous trace produced when a meteorite burns up as it enters the Earth’s atmosphere.
Commercial aircraft that makes regular flights of variable duration, depending on the distance covered; it flies at altitudes of 39,000 feet.
Layer of gas that absorbs a large part of the Sun’s ultraviolet rays.
The world’s highest peak rises to an elevation of 29,035 feet.
Aircraft whose cruising speed is faster than the speed of sound; it flies at altitudes of 62,000 feet.
Fine droplets of water or ice crystals suspended in the atmosphere.
Average height of seawater observed for a given time (day, month, year); it is used as a reference point to define coastal features and measure land elevations.
The most dense layer, which produces most of the meteorological phenomena and where temperatures decrease with altitude.
Highly stable layer of air where temperatures increase with altitude due to the absorption of solar radiation by the ozone layer.
The boundary between the troposphere and the stratosphere; its altitude varies depending on the season, ground temperature, latitude and atmospheric pressure.
Thin transition layer between the stratosphere and the mesosphere.
The atmosphere’s coldest layer, where temperatures decrease with altitude.
Thin transition layer between the mesosphere and the thermosphere.
Layer that absorbs a large portion of solar radiation, leading to a steady increase in its temperature.
Thin transition layer between the thermosphere and the exosphere.
The outermost region of the atmosphere, where low-density gases disperse into space.
Hubble space telescope
Telescope placed in orbit above Earth’s atmosphere (370 mi), making it possible to observe the universe as never before.