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[Gr.,=sphere of air], the mixture of gases surrounding a celestial body with sufficient gravity to maintain it. Although some details about the atmospheres of other planets and satellites are known, only the earth's atmosphere has been well studied, the science of
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The vaguely defined region of the upper atmosphere in which photochemical reactions take place; generally considered to include the stratosphere (or the top thereof) and the mesosphere, and sometimes the lower part of the thermosphere.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.