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Tuesday, 28 July 2020

Variations in atmospheric pressure

Variations in atmospheric pressure
The average weight that air exerts on the earth's surface is 1034 mg per cm². The atmospheric pressure is measured using an instrument called Mercury Barometer. It is recorded in units like millibar (Mb) and hectopascal (hPa). The level of mercury at normal atmospheric pressure will be 76 cm. The atmospheric pressure at that point will be 1013.2 Mb or 1013.2 hPa. 
Isobars
Atmospheric pressure is represented in maps using flow lines. This imaginary
lines drawn on maps connecting points of equal atmospheric pressure are called Isobars.
The factors responsible for changes in atmospheric pressure are:
• Temperature
• Altitude of a place
• Humidity
Temperature and atmospheric pressure
In places where more solar energy is received, the air gets heated up.  The heated air loses its density as a result of which it expands and rises up. This result in a lowering of pressure. As the air becomes cooler, it becomes denser. Since dense colder air sinks down an increase in pressure are felt. As temperature increases pressure becomes low and as temperature decreases, the pressure becomes high. 
Atmospheric pressure and altitude 
The atmospheric pressure decreases with altitude. The pressure decreases at the rate of 1 millibar (Mb) per an altitude of 10 meters. As one goes up, there is a decrease in atmospheric pressure due to the rarification of air with altitude. The atmospheric pressure and altitude are inversely proportional. 
Humidity and atmospheric pressure
Humidity refers to the quantity of water present in the atmosphere. Water vapour is lighter than air and hence it ascends. If the quantity of water vapour is more in a unit volume of air, then naturally the atmospheric pressure will be less. Humidity and atmospheric pressure are inversely proportional. 
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