# AHS 104 Western Governors University Atmospheric Structure Lab Report

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AHS 104

Western Governors University

AHS

## Description

Lab 1: Atmospheric Structure

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In this exercise you will explore the structure of the atmosphere in terms of its pressure and temperature. These measurements are provided by radiosonde balloons, launched globally each day when the time is 12 midnight and 12 noon in London, England (this corresponds to 6 AM and 6 PM Central Standard Time). The nearest station to St. Cloud is in the Twin Cities suburb of Chanhassen, MN. The following table is based on the radiosonde data from Chanhassen on 16 August 2020.

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AHS 104 Lab 1: Atmospheric Structure Spring 2022 In this exercise you will explore the structure of the atmosphere in terms of its pressure and temperature. These measurements are provided by radiosonde balloons, launched globally each day when the time is 12 midnight and 12 noon in London, England (this corresponds to 6 AM and 6 PM Central Standard Time). The nearest station to St. Cloud is in the Twin Cities suburb of Chanhassen, MN. The following table is based on the radiosonde data from Chanhassen on 16 August 2020. A. Using the data and the “pseudoadiabatic diagram” below, plot the temperature (degrees Celsius) on the x-axis vs. the pressure (in millibars) on the y-axis. Connect the adjacent points with straight lines. [This diagram is a special kind of graph paper that meteorologists use. Note the numbers on the y-axis decrease instead of increase as you go up. That matches the pressure in the atmosphere, which always decreases as the height increases.] Pressure (millibars) Temperature (degrees Celsius) 975 950 925 900 850 825 800 750 700 650 600 550 500 450 400 350 300 250 200 150 100 22 20 18 16 18 13 11 8 2 -2 -5 -7 -13 -18 -22 -30 -40 -50 -57 -56 -54 1 Submit this sheet Name _______________________ B. Mark the tropopause (the level where the temperature stops falling with height) with a heavy horizontal line and label the regions of the graph corresponding to the troposphere and stratosphere. What is the tropopause temperature for Chanhassen? ___________ºC C. Are there any temperature inversions? If so, mark them with arrows. 2 Submit this sheet Name _______________________ D. Given the table below, at what height in meters would 50% of the atmosphere lie above? _________________ m At what height would 10% of the atmosphere lie above? _______________ m Pressure (millibars) 1000 850 700 600 560 500 400 300 250 200 100 Height (meters) 0 1530 3138 4391 4877 5780 7450 9490 10710 12140 16560 (Note height is referenced to ground level.) A jet airplane is flying about 10,500 m (about 34,000 feet) above the surface. Approximately what fraction of the atmosphere is above the jet? __________% What faction lies below the airplane? __________% When you are finished, scan or take a photo of pages 2 and 3 only, and upload to the D2L dropbox found by clicking on the Assessments tab, then Assignments, Lab 1. For full credit, be sure your copy is easily legible. 3
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## Explanation & Answer

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AHS 104

Lab 1: Atmospheric Structure

Spring 2022

In this exercise you will explore the structure of the atmosphere in terms of its pressure and
temperature. These measurements are provided by radiosonde balloons, launched globally
each day when the time is 12 midnight and 12 noon in London, England (this corresponds to 6
AM and 6 PM Central Standard Time). The nearest station to St. Cloud is in the Twin Cities
suburb of Chanhassen, MN. The followi...

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