Composition and Structure of the Atmosphere
The Atmosphere, Weather, and Climate
The atmosphere is a mixture of gas molecules, microscopically small suspended particles of solid
and liquid, and falling precipitations.
Meteorology is the study of the atmosphere and the processes (such as cloud formation,
lightning, and wind movement) that causes what we refer to as the “weather”.
Weatheris distinct from climate in that the former deals with short-term phenomena and the
latter with long-term patterns.
Climatology concerns itself with the same elements of the atmosphere that meteorology does
but on a different time scale.
o The main component of climatology is to understand the average values of the
atmospheric characteristics across Earth’s surface.
o It incorporates the values of weather extremes, such as the lowest and highest recorded