The effects of smog
by Lucas Lavin and Michael Constable
What is smog and where can it be found?
Smog is a type of air pollution. It is a result of Internal combustion engines industrial work fumes and veichle emission that end up reacting in the atmosphere with sunlight to form secondary pollutants that then combine with primary emission to form a photochemical smog. Smog can be found in any area with these previously mentioned things.
Temperature inversions are areas where the normal decrease in the temperature of the air with the increase of altitude ends up being reversed resulting in the air above the ground is warmer then the air below it. It can occur anywhere from ground level to thousands of feet in the atmosphere.
Inversion layers are related to smog. This is because smog is capped in a sense when the warm air mass moves over an area. This happens because when the warmer layer of air sits over a city it prevents the normal mixing of cool denser air. The air instead becomes still and over time the lack of mix will cause pollutants to be trapper under the inversion layer developing a lot of smog.
An example of this occurred in December 1952, in London actually. The weather was quite cold at the time and citizens began to burn more coal which in turn increased air pollution. Because a inversion was present at the time the pollutants began trapped increasing the air pollution and resulting in the Great Smog of 1952
How does rain "clean" air?
Because of rains ability to clean air creating rain is even being looked at as a method to clear smog. One place specifically looking into it is China. Their hope is that they can artificially create rain to combat the heavy smog they currently have. But as of now nothing on the success or failure of this has been published.
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Chu, Jennifer. "Can Rain Clean the Atmosphere?" MIT News. MIT, 28 Aug. 2015. Web. 17 May 2016.
SeniorQuack. "What Causes Smog?" YouTube. YouTube, 13 Nov. 2012. Web. 17 May 2016.
Abkowitz, Alyssa, and Brian Spegele. "Beijing Steps Up Smog Warnings."WSJ. The Wall Street Journal, 18 Dec. 2015. Web. 17 May 2016.