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Air Pollution

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Part of the Encyclopedia of Earth Sciences Series book series (EESS)

Synonyms

Air quality

Definitions

Ozone. A gaseous form of oxygen with three atoms per molecule. Ozone is a bluish gas that is harmful to breathe. Nearly 90 % of the Earth’s ozone is in the stratosphere and is referred to as the ozone layer. High concentrations of ozone in the lower troposphere make up one of the components of air pollution.

Troposphere. The portion of the atmosphere, which extends outward about 10–20 km from the Earth’s surface and in which generally temperature decreases rapidly with altitude, clouds form, and convection and weather are active.

Stratosphere. The region of the Earth’s atmosphere extending from the tropopause to about 50 km (31 miles) above the Earth’s surface. The stratosphere is characterized by the presence of ozone gas (in the ozone layer) and by temperatures that rise slightly with altitude, due to the absorption of ultraviolet radiation by ozone.

Aerosols. An aerosol is a suspension of fine solid particles or liquid droplets in a gas. Some...

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Acknowledgment

The research to prepare this entry was carried out at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, under a contract with NASA.

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Eldering, A. (2014). Air Pollution. In: Njoku, E.G. (eds) Encyclopedia of Remote Sensing. Encyclopedia of Earth Sciences Series. Springer, New York, NY. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-0-387-36699-9_7

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