Greenhouse Effect

  • Exhibition Text

    • Visible sunlight heats a planet’s surface, which re-radiates the energy as infrared light. Certain atmospheric gases absorb and trap much of this infrared energy, raising the temperature at the surface. Temperatures increase until the energy escaping the atmosphere balances the energy received from the Sun. This atmospheric heating is known as the greenhouse effect. Earth’s mild greenhouse effect prevents its oceans from freezing over.

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  • For Educators

    • Topic: Astronomy

      Subtopic: Planets

      Keywords: Astrophysics, Solar radiation, Greenhouse effect, Atmospheric, Planets--Atmospheres

      Audience: General