The atmosphere is a layer of gases which surrounds the entire Earth. It consists mainly of Nitrogen, Oxygen, as well as a few other gaseous elements. The purpose of this “layer” around the Earth is to prevent excessive amounts of radiation from reaching the Earth, thereby allowing we, as animals / planets, to survive.
The atmosphere is divided into five layers. It is thickest near the surface and thins out with height until it eventually merges with space.
- The troposphere is the first layer above the surface and contains half of the Earth’s atmosphere. Weather occurs in this layer.
- Many jet aircrafts fly in the stratosphere because it is very stable. Also, the ozone layer absorbs harmful rays from the Sun.
- Meteors or rock fragments burn up in the mesosphere.
- The thermosphere is a layer with auroras. It is also where the space shuttle orbits.
- The atmosphere merges into space in the extremely thin exosphere. This is the upper limit of our atmosphere.