Vertical structure

  • Masaki Satoh
Part of the Springer Praxis Books book series (PRAXIS)


In this chapter, the vertically one-dimensional structure of the atmosphere is investigated based on energy budget analysis in the vertical direction. The vertical thermal structure of the atmosphere is studied by introducing two key concepts: radiative equilibrium and radiative-convective equilibrium. First, as an introduction to the concept of radiative equilibrium, the greenhouse effect is described using a one-layer glass model. Next, the thermal structure in radiative equilibrium is calculated using a simplified radiation scheme. Then, the discussion on radiativeconvective equilibrium follows where the thermal structures of the troposphere and stratosphere are described with the definition of the tropopause. Finally, radiativeconvective equilibrium in the case of a moist atmosphere is argued for.


Optical Depth Tropopause Height Moist Convection Convective Layer Radiative Equilibrium 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Masaki Satoh
    • 1
  1. 1.Atmosphere and Ocean Research InstituteThe University of TokyoKashiwaJapan

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