Q:

What is the chemical makeup of the air people breathe?

A:

Quick Answer

The air that people breathe is almost identical to atmospheric air, consisting of about 78 percent nitrogen and 21 percent oxygen. The last 1 percent of air composition is made of several different gases like argon, helium, carbon dioxide, methane, hydrogen and water vapor.

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Full Answer

While there are small variations in air composition, it is remarkably stable due to the massive volume of atmospheric air. Water vapor content can vary based on humidity, but it will always make up a very small percentage of air. Other factors that can have small impacts on composition are elevation, the season, latitude and longitude as well as local geography.

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