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Describe the structure of the atmosphere with the help of a diagram.

Asked by Topperlearning User 23rd April 2015, 2:08 PM
Answered by Expert

The atmosphere is divided into five layers beginning from the surface of the Earth. These are:


  • It is the most important layer of the atmosphere and extends up to 13 km above the surface of the Earth.
  • Oxygen required for respiration and survival of life exists in this layer of the Earth.
  • The temperature decreases in this layer with an increase in the height.
  • All the weather phenomena like rainfall, hail and fog occur in this layer as clouds are formed in this layer.
  • The upper limit of the troposphere is known as the tropopause. Temperatures may be as low as -58°C at this level.


  • This layer of atmosphere lies above the troposphere and extends up to a height of 50 km.
  • Airplanes fly in this layer, as this layer is free from clouds and other weather phenomena. This layer is also free from the water vapour and dust particles.
  • Stratosphere contains a layer of ozone gas which protects us from the harmful ultraviolet rays of the Sun.
  • In the higher levels of the stratosphere, the temperature increases with height due to the absorption of UV rays by the ozone layer.
  • The upper part of stratosphere is known as stratopause.


  • This is the third layer of the atmosphere and lies above the stratosphere up to a height of 80 km.
  • It is in this layer that the meteorites burn when they enter into the atmosphere from space.
  • The upper layer of mesosphere is known as the mesopause.

Thermosphere or Ionosphere

  • This layer extends from 80-400 km.
  • Temperature increases drastically in this layer and can go up to 1,480°C. It is because the molecules in this layer absorb the Sun’s UV rays.
  • The thermosphere helps in the transmission of radio waves as the latter is reflected back to the Earth by this layer.


  • It is the uppermost layer of the Earth and has a very thin layer of air.
  • Light gases like helium and hydrogen float into the space from this layer due to lack of gravity.
  • This layer extends from 480 km to 960 km above the Earth.
  • Temperature increases with height in this layer. The temperature may well go beyond 1,600°C.



Answered by Expert 23rd April 2015, 4:08 PM
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