Anonymous asked in Science & MathematicsAstronomy & Space · 4 weeks ago

where does earths atmosphere officially 'end' ?

how far out is our atmosphere, is our moon inside our atmosphere ? is our atmospheres boundaries constantly changing ?

4 Answers

  • 4 weeks ago

    When there is no air outside of the atmosphere.

  • 4 weeks ago

    The atmosphere gradually fades out.  There's an official height which is considered "in space", which is 100 km above sea level, but in fact that's still in the atmosphere.  Objects in Low Earth Orbit, where all human activity has taken place since 1972, are still in the atmosphere, in a layer called the thermosphere.  Above that is the exosphere, defined as molecules which are still primarily under the influence of Earth's gravity as opposed to that of another body, which by definition would exclude our moon.

  • 4 weeks ago

    Well, *space* officially begins at 100 km altitude - about 62.2 miles... But, any satellite orbiting there will quickly have it's orbit decay due to atmospheric drag.  Our atmosphere extends *very* far away - traces out to and beyond the moon.  There are traces of our atmosphere that spiral outward from the sun, so Earth leaves a very thin, tenuous 'tail' of atmospheric gases as we orbit the Sun. 

    The boundaries within the various layers of our atmosphere do change; they can vary with pressure, temperature, and solar activity.  

  • 4 weeks ago

    Yes Earth's atmosphere IS constantly changing up to 10,000 kilometers from Earth. That does NOT include the Moon. Legally, the Kármán line at 100 kilometers altitude is where outer space begins. 

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