The stratosphere is an important layer of the atmosphere because it contains the ozone layer, which absorbs much of the Sun’s harmful UV radiation.
The stratosphere is the second layer of Earth’s atmosphere, located above the troposphere and below the mesosphere. It spans from an altitude of about 10 to 50 kilometers (6 to 31 miles) above the Earth’s surface.
The stratosphere is primarily composed of nitrogen and oxygen, similar to the lower layer of the atmosphere, but it also contains a high concentration of ozone. The ozone layer is located in the upper portion of the stratosphere, between about 10 and 50 kilometers (6 to 31 miles) above the Earth’s surface. The ozone layer absorbs much of the Sun’s harmful ultraviolet (UV) radiation, which makes the stratosphere an important protective shield for life on Earth.
The stratosphere is characterized by a temperature inversion, where the temperature increases with altitude. At the bottom of the stratosphere, the temperature is typically around -60°C (-76°F), while at the top, it can be as warm as 0°C (32°F). The warming is due to the absorption of UV radiation by ozone, which converts it to heat.
The stratosphere extends from about 10 to 50 kilometers (6 to 31 miles) above the Earth’s surface. It is the layer of the atmosphere above the troposphere, which is the layer where weather occurs.
Stratosphere Key Characteristics and Facts:
- The stratosphere is an important layer of the atmosphere because it contains the the most notable atmospheric phenomena that occurs is the ozone layer, which absorbs much of the Sun’s harmful UV radiation.
- The stratosphere is relatively calm, with little turbulence or weather phenomena.
- The stratosphere is also the layer of the atmosphere where high-altitude aircraft and weather balloons operate, due to its stable and predictable nature.
- The highest recorded manned flight in the stratosphere was the Red Bull Stratos mission in 2012, in which Austrian skydiver Felix Baumgartner jumped from a balloon at an altitude of about 39 kilometers (24 miles) above the Earth’s surface.
- Due to its high altitude and low air pressure, the stratosphere is also an ideal environment for scientific research, such as astronomical observations and studying the effects of radiation on living organisms.