Vertical Profile of Pressure

  • Atmospheric Pressure decreases with height.... in a similar manner as density

Question for Thought:

Consider a column of air that is above a horizontal area of 1 square meter.  What is the mass of air in that column:

a.  above the earth's surface (assume that you are at sea level)

b.  above a height where the pressure is 500 hPa

HINT:  Fg = mg where Fg is the force due to gravity, m is the mass of an object and g = 9.8 ms-2.