Composition and Structure
Major components, gaseous and particulate, steady state in concentration due to balanced inputs and outputs. Scale of inputs and outputs compared to reservoir. Units and inter-conversion between units.
Temperature and density profile of the atmosphere and identification of layers designated troposphere, stratosphere, and mesosphere.
Effect of gravity - vertical pressure profile derived, concept of scale height.
Effect of solar radiation – adiabatic lapse rate derived, photochemical reactions exemplified by ozone production and destruction in stratosphere. General circulation in brief.
Minor Constituents
Sources, sinks, residence time of major and important minor constituents, including:
(i) Water – role in energy balance, main reactions involving water or water derived species such as OH radical. Heterogeneous-phase reactions, Henry’s
Law, pH of rainfall.
(ii) Carbon compounds - CO2, CO, CH4 mainly. The role of CO2 in the planet's
energy balance, and its seasonal variation.
(iii) Nitrogen compounds - NO, NO2, N2O, and NH3 mainly
(iv) Sulphur compounds - SO2, H2S, COS, and DMS mainly
(v) Oxygen compounds - O3 mainly, including photochemistry of stratospheric
(vi) Particulates –classification according to size - sources and sinks.
Atmospheric Pollution
Early pollution episodes, main or criteria pollutants in modern cities
Anthropogenic sources compared to natural sources in magnitude.
CO2 seasonal and long-term variation, global warming Acid rain
Photochemical smog, importance of organics, production of ozone and PAN
Stratospheric ozone losses, likely mechanisms, ozone hole over Antarctica.
Some health effects of pollution, other effects.