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Points 53

Lecture #9
Light Matter
1. Nature of Light
2. Properties of Matter
Chapter 5 (sections 1-3)
How do we experience Light?
- Warmth (sun)
- Color
Colors is Light
- Light is made up of many different colors
o Very hot material emits visible light (sun, wire in light bulb)
o Cool light (from a chair) doesnt emit visible light by itself
Absorbs and reflects it
i.e. Red Chair = absorbs blue light, reflects red light
How do light and matter interact?
- Emission
- Absorption
o Materials that absorb = opaque
- Transmission (allow some to pass through)
o Materials that transmit = transparent
- Reflection (or redirecting or scattering)
o Reflection = bouncing in same general direction
o Scattering = more random
- How do we experience light?
o Light is a form of energy
o Light comes in many colors that combine to form white light
- How does light interact with matter?
o Matter can emit, absorb, transmit, and reflect (redirect/scatter) light
o Interactions between light and matter determine the appearance of everything we
see around us

Part 2

What is light?
- Light can act either like a wave or like a particle
- Particles of light are called photons
- Pebble in the pond analogy
o Waves ripple in the pond
Consists of trough (water lower than average) and peaks (water higher
than average)
o Leaf in pond will rise and fall with peaks and troughs but wont move waves
carry energy outward but do not carry matter along with them
- Particle = thing
- Wave = pattern revealed by interactions with particles
Properties of Waves
- 3 basic properties of waves: wavelength, frequency, and speed
- Wavelength
o Distance from one peak to the next
- Frequency
o Number of times (per sec) that a wave vibrates up and down
cycles per second often called Hertz (Hz)
- Wave Speed
o Wave Speed = Wavelength x Frequency
Tells us how fast their peaks travel
Light: Electromagnetic Waves
- A light wave is a vibration of electric and magnetic fields
o Light is an electromagnetic wave
Causes electrons to bob up and down wriggle as a snake as light passed
o A field is used to describe the force an object would feel when in a certain space
- Light interacts with charged particles through these electric and magnetic fields
o Light always travels at the speed of light (about 300,000 km per sec)
Wavelength x Frequency = Speed of Light (c)
o So there is an inverse relationship between Frequency and Wavelength
Longer Wavelength = Shorter Frequency
If W is 1cm, F must be 30 GHz
Therefore, if W = .5cm F would double to 60 GHz
W = .25cm F = 120 GHz

Particles of Light
- Particles of Light are called photons
o Has properties of both particles and waves
- Each photon has a wavelength and a frequency
- The energy of a photon depends of its frequency
o Directly proportional to its frequency
o E=hx f
H is called Plancks Constant
Electromagnetic Spectrum
- Light we can see = Visible Light
o 400nm 700nm (Blue Red)
- In order of Short Long Wavelengths
o Gamma rays, X-Rays, UV rays, Visible, Infrared, Radio
o High frequency low frequency (inversely proportional to wavelength)
o Large energy per photon small energy per photon
- Infrared Light
o Wavelengths somewhat longer than red lights
Lies beyond red in the spectrum
I.E. Jupiter
- Radio Waves
o We hear sound waves from the car radio, not electromagnetic waves
o Sometimes given the name microwaves
Radar, Microwave ovens
Cosmic microwave background Radio images of Galaxies (Centaurus
- Ultraviolet (UV) Light
o Just to the left of visible light (violet)
Example: The Sun
o Mostly absorbed by the ozone in the atmosphere
o Can cause skin cancer
- X-Rays
o Very short, very energetic wavelengths (left of UV, right of Gamma)
o Can penetrate through tissues, but not bones
- Gamma Rays
o Most energetic, shortest wavelengths
o Extremely Violent events
Recap: Properties of Light
- What is light?
o Can behave either like a wave or a particle
o A light wave is a vibration of electric and magnetic fields
o Light waves have a wavelength and a frequency
o Photons are particle of light

What is the electromagnetic spectrum?

o Human eyes cannot see most forms of light
o The entire range of wavelengths of light is known as the electromagnetic

Properties of Matter
What to know
- What is the structure of matter?
- What are the phases of matter?
What is the Structure of Matter
- Electron (Negative), Protons (Positive Red), and Neutrons (Neutral Grey)
- Atomic Terms
o Atomic Number number of protons in nucleus
Number of electrons = number of protons
o Atomic Mass number of protons and neutrons
o Molecules consist of two or more atoms
o Isotopes Atoms with same number of protons, but different number of neutrons
Phases of Matter
- Solid, liquid, gas
o Phases depend primarily on temperature but are also affected by pressure
- Measures how fast particles (atoms or molecules) move
Temp. Scales
- Water Boils around 100 C
- Freezes at 0 C
- Absolute Zero = -273.15 C
- Room Temp = 0 C or 300K
Phase Changes
- Melting: Breaking of rigid lattice; solid liquid
- Evaporation: Breaking of chemical bonds; liquid gas
- Dissociation: Breaking of molecules into atoms
- Ionization: Stripping of electrons, changing atoms into plasma
o Free elections and ions
- Often more than one phase is present

Lecture #10
Matter and Shit
1. Matter (Cont., recap)
2. Inferring properties of matter from light
3. Inferring motions of objects from light
Chapter 5 (sections 4 and 5)
Energy Levels in Atoms
- Electrons in an atom are held in orbit around nucleus by electrical force
o Kind of like a planet around a sun
- Can occupy many discrete orbits
o Each orbit is an energy level (like the rungs on a latter specific heights)
- What is the structure of matter
o Matter is made of atoms, which consist of a nucleus of protons and neutrons
surrounded by a cloud of electrons
- What are the phases of matter
o As temperature rises, a substance transforms from a solid to a liquid to a gas, then
the molecules can dissociate into atoms (more than one can co-exist, thought)
o Stripping of electrons from atoms (ionization) turns the substance into a plasms
- How is energy stored in atoms?
o The energies of electrons in atoms correspond to discrete energy levels
Learning From Light
- What to know
o What are the three basic types of spectra?
o How does light tell us what things are made of?
o How does light tell us the temperature of light emitters?
- Spectra
o Most astronomical information comes from spectra of light
Spectrum = distribution of light intensity at different wavelengths
o A graph of intensity vs. wavelength
Three Types of Spectra
- Continuous Spectrum (Light Bulb)
o Kirchhoffs First Law Spans all visible wavelengths without interruption
- Emission Spectrum (Neon Lamp)
o Thin/low-density cloud of hot gas emits light only at specific wavelengths
producing a spectrum with bright emission lines

Kirchhoffs Second Law

Absorption line Spectrum
o Cloud of cool gas between us and a light bulb can absorb light of specific
wavelengths, leaving dark absorption lines in the spectrum
o Kirchhoffs Third Law

Recap: 3 Types of Spectra

- Continuous
o Hot and Dense
- Emission
o Hot and Diffuse cloud of gas
o Mostly Black, light emitted only at specific colors
- Absorption
o Hot and Dense light source then cool and diffuse gas
o Mostly colors, light absorbed at specific colors
Inferring Properties of Matter from Light
Why do we see emission spectrum?
- Thermal motions lead to collisions
o Collisions lead to excitation of atoms to higher energy levels
o De-excitation of atoms leads to emission of photons
Photon energy = energy difference between levels
Chemical Fingerprints
- Each type of atom has a unique set of energy levels or a spectral fingerprint
o Each transition corresponds to a unique photon energy (color)
Downward transitions produce a unique pattern of emission lines (colors)
Energy Levels of Molecules
- Molecules have additional energy levels because they can vibrate and rotate

October 1
Doppler Effect (Cont.)
Overview of Planets
What are the two basic types?
- Refracting Telescope
o Focuses light with lenses
Bending of light when passing from one medium (air) into another (glass)
is called refraction
o Examples
Galileo Refracting Telescope (1609)
McCormick Observatory (UVA, 1883)
26 inch Refractor
- Reflecting Telescope
Why bigger the better?
What do astronomers do with telescopes?
- Imaging: Taking pictures of sky
o Astronomical detectors generally record only one color at a time
o Several imagines must be combined to make full-color pictures
- Spectroscopy: Sorting light into Spectra
- Timing: ___________
Atmospheric Effects
How does Earths atmosphere affect ground-based observations?
Why do we put telescopes into space?
- Twinkling and Turbulence
o Turbulent air flow in Earths atmosphere distorts our view, causing stars to appear
to twinkle
- Hubble Space Telescope
o Launched by Space Shuttle in 1990
Designed to be serviced regularly by space shuttles
o Didnt finish

October 8
Points - 2
Last Time
Telescopes (Chapter 6)
Overview of Solar System (7.1)
Overview of Solar System cont. (7.1)
Patterns in Solar System
What to know
- What does the Solar System look like?
- What are the major features of the Sun and planets?
Misleading Points
- Orbital Shape
o All planets orbit in same direction
o 8 major planets with DIDNT FINISH
- Planetary Scale
o Planets much smaller than sun
- Size vs. Separation
o ***Planets are tiny compared to the distances between them
Grapefruit Analogy (Shrink by factor of 10)
Sun = grapefruit (14cm)
Earth 100x smaller, size of ballpoint pen (1.3 mm or .13cm)
Jupiter = size of grape
Sun Earth Distance = 15 meters
Sun Jupiter Distances = About 75 meters
Planet sizes much much smaller than separations
Major Features of Objects in Solar System
1. Size
2. Distance
3. Mass
4. Composition
5. Other Notable Features
- Radius
o 6,400 km = 1 R(subscript) Earth
- Diameter

o 13,000km
Distance to Sun
o 150,000,000km = 1 AU (10,000x Dia. Of Earth)
Average Density
o 5.5 g/cm3 (heavier than water)
o Rocks and Metals
Surface Temp.
o 290 K or about 300K (liquid water)
Important Features
o Only place known to have life at present time
o Only place with surface liquid and Oxygen in atmosphere in the solar system
Large amount of oxygen comparatively deteriorates quickly but life
replenishes it
o Surprisingly large moon (relative to size)
Moons Radius is Earths
Separation is about 30x the Diameter of the Earth = 1 Light Second
Moon regulates the speed of the Earth through tidal friction

The Sun
- Most dominating object in solar system
- Biggest and most massive object
- Size
o Radius
100 times R of Earth
o Mass
300x Earths (Less weight/density)
99.9% of solar systems mass
o Volume
1003 of Earth
- Composition
o Mostly made of Hydrogen and Helium gas (98% by mass, 2% by others)
Why gas? Very high surface temperature 6,000K
Not hot enough at surface for plasma
o Plasma found in area just outside the sun and inside the
sun, just not at surface
- Thermal Radiation (Wiens law, hotter, bluer)
o Wavelength of peak intensity = 3,000,000nm/ Temp. (K), for Sun, peaks at
500nm, in the visible (400-700nm)
Higher temperature = shorter wavelengths
o Supply virtually all visible light in solar system (e.g. moon)
o Why so hot at surface?
Strongly squeezed at center, temperature about 15 million K (plasma)
Nuclear Reactions at the Center of the Sun

Converting about 4 million tons of matter into energy according to

E = Mc2 per second
Middle Aged
Used half of its Hydrogen Helium; About 5 billion years to go
Clues to resolving the energy crisis on Earth?
Mass and Gravity allow for this temperature?
Heat Hydrogen hot enough you can make Helium

- Density and Composition is similar to Earth (rocks and Metals)
- Closest planet to the Sun
o .4 AU
- Size
o Smaller than Earth
o .4x Earths Radius
- Mass
o 20x less massive than Earth
- Density
o Similar to Earth
o Volume is much smaller
- Composition
o Rocks and Metals (Similar to Earth)
- Notable Features
o Desolate, crated; little air; long, steep cliffs
o Very hot and very cold:
Day: 425 Celsius (about 700K)
Night: 170 Celsius (About 100K)
o Flyby by Mariner 10 (1974 1975)
Least studied inner planet
o Messenger Spacecraft orbiting since 2011 (Launched 2004)
- 2nd closest to the Sun
o .7 AU
- Size, mass, and density similar to Earth Earths Twin?
o Size = 0.95 Earths Radius
o Mass = 0.8 Earths (only 20% difference)
o Made of Rocks and Metals
- Mysterious evil twin of Earth
o Surface hidden by clouds
- Temperature
o 740K
o Even hotter than Mercury
470 Celsius day and night

o Hellish conditions due to an extreme greenhouse effect

Mostly Carbon Dioxide
- Father away from Sun, 1.5 AU
o Almost twice as far as Venus
- Size
o About 0.50 size as Earth
2x size of moon but slightly bigger than Mercury
- Mass
o About 10% of Earths
- Composition
o Rocks and Metals, like Earth
- Temperature
o About 220K (or -50 Celsius)
Colder than Earth
- Moons
o Two tiny moons
- Looks almost Earth-like, but very thin air
o Atmosphere isnt made of Oxygen, very little Oxygen
- Features
o Giant volcanoes, a huge canyon (stretches almost half of planet), polar caps of
o Water flowed in distant past
Could there have been life?
- Best studied Planet (besides Earth)
o Chance of life surviving there
- Distance
o 5AU, 12 years away
o Much farther from Sun
- Size
o 11x Earths Radius
o Largest planet in solar system
- Mass
o 300x Earth
- Density
o 1.3 g/cm3
Lower than Earth (5.5)
- Composition
o Mostly Hydrogen and Helium gas
No solid surface
- Temperature

o 125 K
o Much colder than Earth and Inner planets
o More than 60 moons
o And some (faint) rings

- Temperature
o Cloud top temp = 95K
Colder than Jupiter
- Composition
o Giant and gaseous, mostly H and He
Just like Jupiter
- Features
o Spectacular Rings
o Many moons
Second largest moon
Lakes of Methane
- Discovered on March 13, 1781 by William Hershel
o Initially names George
- Distance
o 20 AU
Nearly twice as far from Sun as Saturm
o 84 year orbit
Since discovery its orbited around like 3 times
- Size
o 4x Earth
Smaller than Jupiter and Saturn
- Mass
o About 15x Earth
- Composition
o H and He gas and Hydrogen Compounds
Water, Ammonia (NH3) and Methane (CH4)
Sets it apart
- Temperature
o Cloud-top = 60K (about 20% of Earths)
- Features
o Cant see with Naked Eye (Unlike Jupiter and Saturn)
o Many moons and rings
o Extreme Axis Tilt
Most unique characteristic

42 year long daylight

- Distance
o 30AU (50% farther than Uranus)
- Similar size, mass, composition, and temperature to Uranus
- Has normal axis tilt
- Features
o Many moons and rings
Orbits the planet backwards (clock-wise) different from all
other big moons
- Discovered in 1930
- Distance
o 40 AU at average
Farther away from Neptune most of the time
Weird orbit, sometimes inside Neptunes obrbit
- Size
o .18x Earth
Smaller than our moon
- Mass
o .002x Earth (.2% or 500x less)
- Temperature
o 40K
- Composition
o Made of ice (like comets)
- Features
o Demoted to Dwarf planet in 2006 by IAU (International Astronomical Union)

October 22
Last Time
Formation of stars and disks
Formation of planets (started)
Formation of Planets (Cont.)
Aftermath of planet formation
Age of solar system
Planet Geology (Chap. 9, if time)
Chapter 8 (Sections 4 and 5) and Chapter 9
The Great Divide
- Frost (or snow) line at 3.5 AU, where Temp. = 150K
o Inside frost line: Too hot for H compounds to form ices
Small solid particles of rock and metal only
o Outside frost line: Cold enough for ices to form
Solid particles of ice as well as rock and metal
Step #1
- Condensed solid particles are seeds of planet formation
Step #2
- Collision and sticking of small solid particles together to form boulder-sized
planetesimals (pieces of planet, or building blocks of planet; about a KM)
o Some are rocky (inside frost line) rocky planets
o Some are icy (outside frost line) icy planets???
Step #3
- Planetesimals merge together via gravitational attraction into a few planets called
o As object grows the gravity increases drawing more objects to the objects
But objects could smash into it, making it start over
How Did Terrestrial Planets Form?
- Small particles of rock and metal condense inside frost line
- Planetesimals of rock and metal build up > particles collided and stuck
- Mutual gravitational attraction eventually assembled these planetesimals into terrestrial

Early Solar system was a very dangerous place

o Gravity pulling in all loose planetesimals and smashing into each other

How did Jovian planets form?

1. Small particles of ice and rock/metal outside the frost line
2. Larger (because ice is added more to work with) planetesimals were able to form
through sticking
3. Planetesimals merge via gravity into more massive icy/rocky protoplanetary cores of
about 10x mass of the Earth
4. Gravity of these protoplanetary cores are able to draw in surrounding H and He gases bu
up to 300x Mass of Earth (Jupiter)
a. One step further than the terrestrial planets
b. Key step
5. Miniature disks form around forming giant planets due to angular momentum
a. Moons of Jovian planets form in miniature discs (disks within discs)
b. Small fraction of mass of planet gets stuck orbiting the planet
What happened to the H and He gas in the terrestrial planet formation zone?
Solar Wind
- Out-flowing matter from the Sun >> blew away the leftover gases not used to make the
o Winds are much stronger when stars are forming
What have we learned?
- Why are there two types of planets?
o Because of temperature inside and outside of frost line
- How did the terrestrial planets form?
o Rock and metals > small particles
o Rocky/metal particles > planetesimals
o Planetismals accreted >> planets
- How did Jovian planets form
o Rock/Metal + ice > planets more massive
o Gravity of these massive planets draws in H, He Gases
- What happened to H and He Gases in Terrestrial planets?
o Gone with the Wind (Solar Wind)

In-Class Exercise #1

How would the solar system be different if the solar nebula had cooled, with a temperature half
its actual value
- Jovian planets would have formed closer to Sun
o Frost line would be twice as close (3.5 AU 1.75 AU)
Review: Basic Patterns to be Explained
1. Patterns of motion of the large bodies
Orbit in same direction and plane
2. Existence of two types of planets
Terrestrial and Jovian
3. Existence of smaller bodies
Asteroids and comets
4. Notable exceptions to usual patterns
Rotation of Uranus, Earths moon, etc.
The Aftermath of Planet Formation
Where did asteroids and comets come from?
- Asteroids: rocky planetismals left over from terrestrial planet formation inside frost line
o Between Mars and Jupiter
- Comets: icy planetesimals left over from jovian planet formation, outside the frost line
o Outside Neptune
Why Exceptions to the Rules?
- Almost the same as answer to the asteroids (left over material not directly used to form
o Only difference: not on stable orbit
Cross the orbit of other object can crash into other things
- Loose planetesimals bombarded other objects in the late stages of solar system formation
era of heavy bombardment
o Evidence seen in craters
o Have loose planetesimals for the first .5 billion years or so
Exceptions Cont. -- Evidence of Heavy Bombardment
Origins of Earths water from heavy bombardment
- Earth was assembled from rocky planetesimals
- Water may have come to Earth by way of icy planetesimals
o Delivered during period of heavy bombardment by loose icy planetesimals
Craters on planets
Mars should not have moons
- Unusual moons of some planets may be captures planetesimals
How about our Moon?

Exceptional for terrestrial planets

Dozen or so planets formed initially in our Solar system not all survived
Perhaps Moon created through a giant impact on the Earth by a Mars-sized failed
planet on loose orbit
o The collision stripped matter from Earths crustthen accreted into Moon.tilt

What about odd spin axis of Uranus

- Giant impacts might also explain the unusual spin axes of some planets
- Where did asteroids and comets come from?
o Leftover planetesimals on stable orbits
Summary: Origin of Solar System
- A gas cloud collapses under its own weight into a star
- A fraction of gas forms a rotating disk due to angular momentum conservation
- Rocky particles inside frost line both rocky and icy outside
- Particles stick together into planetesimals
- Rocky terrestrial planets; icy Jovian
- Jovian planetary cores capture H and He more massive
o Mini dicks around Jovian planets
- Left-over planetesimals in stable orbits comets and asteroids
o Unstable heavy bombardment
- Leftover gas blown away from terrestrial planets
In-Class Exercise #2
Which of these facts about the solar system in NOT explained by the nebulary theory?
- Number of planets of each type (4 terrestrial and 4 Jovian)
o Randomization to the creation

Does explain
o There are two main types of planets: terrestrial and Jovian
o Planets orbit in same direction and in nearly the same plane
o Existence of asteroids and comets

How to Determine Age of Solar System

Key: Radioactive Isotopes
- Potassium used to date universe
o 19 protons in nucleus
K39 20 Neutrons Stable
K40 21 Neutrons Unstable
K41 22 Neutrons Stable

How to Determine Age of Solar System?

- Atoms of radioactive 40K (19 protons and 21 neutrons) change spontaneously (or decay)
into atoms of Argon40 over time
- The time for HALF of 40K atoms to become 40Argon is 1.25 Billion years
- Argon is an inert gas that does NOT condense into solids
o If 40Ar is found in rocks it must be from radioactive 40K
o Amount of 40Ar relative it 40K depends on age of rock
- How does radioactivity reveal an objects age?
o Some isotopes decay with a well-known half-life (K-40 and Ur-238)
o Didnt get to finish
Geology of Terrestrial Worlds
Surface Features of Terrestrial Worlds
- Moon (.25 Earth) and Mercury (.4 Earth) have tons of crater
- Earth was originally covered with a ton of craters but theyve been erase
- Mars (.5 Earth)
o A lot more craters than Earth, but much less than surface of the moon
o Some geological activities erasing these craters
Geology not as active
- Venus (.95 Earth)
o Covered mainly by clouds harder to see
o Are things that drive volcanic activity

October 29, 2015
Last Time
Geology of Moon, Mercury, and Mars
Geology of Mars (Cont.)
Geology of Venus
Atmospheres of Planets
Chapter 9 (Sections 9.4 and 9.5)
Chapter 10 (Section 10.1)
- Most explored planet
- Watched long ass video clip about how hard it is to land things on Mars
Endurance Crater
- Discovery by Mars Rover, Opportunity
o Lots of small spheres dubbed blueberries
Can only be formed in standing water
Strongest evidence yet of past abundant water
Cannot have water now atmosphere too thin and its too cold
Phoenix Space Craft
- Landed in polar region
- Mission is to look for ice caps, frozen ice (not liquid ice)
o Water frost at 6am
Fades immediately after sunrise
- Dug into Mars surface with small excavator
o Sub-surface water ice took about 4 days to evaporate
Could not be CO2 ice (evaporates in one day)
- How Martians invaded popular culture
o Surface features of Mars misinterpreted as canals
- What are major geological features of Mars?
o Differences in cratering across surface
o Giant shield (extinct) volcanoes
o Evidence of (past) tectonic activity
- Geological evidence for past water on Mars?
o Features that look like dry riverbeds

o Rovers have found rocks (blueberries) that must be formed by water

o Features on crater walls may indicate recent water flows
o Subsurface water ice found by Phoenix spacecraft

Distance = .7AU
.95 Size of Earth
.80 Earths Mass
Orbital Period = 225 = 1 Venus year
Spin Period = 243 = 1 Venus day
o Slow and wrong direction
o Slower that orbit around the sun
Covered by thick clouds

Magellan Spacecraft
- Launched May 4, 1989
- Uses Radio waves from a Radar dish
- Operated from 1990 1994
- Mapped the entire surface
Cratering on Venus
- Some impact craters, but far fewer than Moon, Mercury, and Mars
- Relatively young surface of 750 million years
- Relatively few small craters, uniformly spread out
Volcanoes on Venus
- Many volcanoes, including both shield volcanoes and stratovolcanoes
o Many volcanoes in some regions
- Some probably still active, because SO2 (sulfur dioxide) in atmosphere, from outgassing
from active volcanoes
Tectonics on Venus
- Earths
o Keeps the surface of the Earth young features erased from surface as plates
dive under each other
- Rugged terrains indicative of stresses (magma) below the surface
- No plate tectonics on Venus
o Venus does not appear to have plate tectonics, but entire surface seems to have
been repaved 750 million years ago for reasons not known
Little Erosion on Venus
- Photos of rocks taken by a Russian Lander show little erosion
o No liquid water [rain] too hot

o Little surface wind too slow spin

Atmospheric Basics
What is an atmosphere?
- All terrestrial worlds surrounded by a layer of gas
o Huge difference in the gas, some extremely thin, others thick
- This layer of gas is called atmosphere
Earths Atmosphere
- About 10km thick (Earths Radius = 6,400km)
- Consists mostly of molecular nitrogen (N2) and oxygen (O2)
o Small amounts of other gas (i.e. CO2, H2O)
Atmospheric Pressure
- Gas pressure depends on both density and temperature
o Adding air molecules increases the pressure in a balloon
o Heating the air also increases the pressure
- Pressure and density increase with altitude because the weight of overlying layers is less
- Pressure at sea level
o 15 lbs. per square inch
o 1 bar
Where does an atmosphere end?
- There is no clear upper boundary
- Altitudes >60km are considered space
o Aurora extending up to 100km
Effects of Atmosphere
- Create pressure that determines whether liquid water can
- Didnt finish
How is the temperature of a planet determined without greenhouse effect
- The surface of a planet is heated mostly by sunlight (visible light can reach surface)
- A fraction reflected back to space, remaining absorbed and turned into heat
- Surface cooling by thermal radiation (infrared for typical T)
- Temperature determined by balance of Sunlight heating and loss of Infrared (IR)
radiation into space
How does the greenhouse effect warm a planet?
- Greenhouse gases in atmosphere (CO2, H20 vapor and methane CH4) absorb and reemit
IR photons, heating the lower atmospheres
- Greenhouse gases act like a blanket to slow down heat leakage and keep a planet warm