Science Facts - Lapse Rate - Standard Atmosphere

The atmosphere is dynamic, continuously changing.

Just like scientists have computed an average temperature for the entire planet (15C), they have also defined a standard temperature profile for the atmosphere ... modified as more data becomes available.

In the tables below, be sure to notice that the temperature of the stratopause is different (-2.5 vs 9.5).

Also note that the average surface temperature is 15C (59F) and that other references (including the IPCC ) claim that it should be 14C (57F).


The U.S. Standard Atmosphere, 1976 document says (on page 20) that The International Standard Atmosphere sea-level temperature of 15C was adopted in 1924 by Resolution 192 of the International Commission for Air Navigation. Later, the 1954 Tenth General Conference on Weights and Measures "set the fixed point of the Kelvin temperature scale to 273.16 K, which is 0.01 K above the ice-point temperature at standard sea-level pressure".

The same reference states that the standard sea-level atmospheric pressure was set to 1.013250 x 10^5 Pa in 1947.

Author: Robert Clemenzi
URL: http:// / Science_Facts / Lapse_Rate / Standard_Atmosphere.html