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Changes in Atmospheric Composition

Atmospheric composition is the chemical make-up of the earth’s atmosphere.

Our atmosphere is made up of many different gases. The most common gases are nitrogen, oxygen and argon. But, the exact amount of each gas is always changing.

Since the industrial revolution, humans have caused a big change in the composition of the atmosphere and significantly increased the amount of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. These gases cause the atmosphere to trap more heat – like a greenhouse – leading to long-term changes in our climate. The most well-known greenhouse gas is carbon dioxide.

We are looking at how atmospheric composition will change in the future, with particular focus on the stratosphere, the second layer of the earth’s atmosphere. We are also looking at how changes in the stratosphere will affect the troposphere, the first layer of the earth’s atmosphere and the air that we breathe.