Q:

Does air pressure increase with altitude?

A:

Quick Answer

Air pressure decreases with altitude. The combined weight of air molecules at increasing altitude decreases. Air pressure is greatest at the Earth's surface, because the surface air molecules bear the combined weight of all the air molecules above.

Continue Reading

Full Answer

As altitude increases, individual air molecules can occupy a greater volume of the atmosphere. Because air molecules can achieve increasing distances from one another with increasing altitudes, the air can be described as being thinner, or less dense.

For example, aircraft flying at higher altitudes can face control issues because the air becomes increasingly rarefied. The air molecules can reach such a low density that aircraft control surfaces, such as the wings, ailerons and rudder, can become ineffective.

Learn more about Particle Physics

Related Questions

  • Q:

    What units are used to measure air pressure?

    A:

    Air pressure, the force exerted on a mass by the weight of air particles, is measured in either inches of mercury or in millibars, represented by inHg and mb, respectively. One standard atmosphere, represented by the symbol atm, is equal to 29.92 inHg, or 1013.25 mb.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What does air pressure mean?

    A:

    Air pressure is the amount of pressure the weight of air exerts on a specific point. In terms of weather, air pressure is measured in millibars, hectopascals or inches of mercury. For items such as tires and other inflatable items, air pressure is measured in pounds per square inch.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What is linear expansivity?

    A:

    Linear expansivity is a material's tendency to lengthen in response to an increase in temperature. Linear expansivity is a type of thermal expansion. It is described by a fraction that represents the fractional increase in length of a thin beam of a material exposed to a temperature increase of one degree Celsius. The fraction is called the linear expansion coefficient of the material.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What is negative entropy?

    A:

    Entropy means an increase of disorder or randomness in natural systems, and negative entropy means an increase of orderliness or organization. Negative entropy is also known as negentropy. Individual systems can experience negative entropy, but overall, natural processes in the universe trend toward entropy,

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:

Explore