Temperature In The Atmosphere

Figure 1.2 shows the global average temperature distribution for January over the period 1979-98, as determined from satellite. The heavy dark line denotes the height of the tropopause; the tropopause is highest over the tropics (M4-15 km) and lowest over the poles (—8 km). The coldest region of the atmosphere is in the stratosphere just above the tropica! tropopause, where temperatures are less than 200 K (—73°C). Since Figure 1,2 presents climatology for the month of January, temperatures over the North

Temperature January 1979-1996

Temperature January 1979-1996

Latitude

FIGURE 1.2 Global average temperature distribution for January over 1979-I99S.

Latitude

FIGURE 1.2 Global average temperature distribution for January over 1979-I99S.

Pole (90° latitude) are colder than those over the South Pole (—90c latitude): the reverse is true in July.

The U.S. Standard Atmosphere (Table A.8) gives mean conditions at 45°N latitude. From Figure 1.2 we note that the change of temperature with altitude varies with latitude. Throughout this book we will need the variation of atmospheric properties as a function of altitude. For this we will generally use the U.S. Standard Atmosphere.

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