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What is the most abundant gas in Earth's atmosphere?

Question:

What is the most abundant gas in Earth's atmosphere?

Composition of Earth's Atmosphere

The atmosphere is made of gas and lots of it! Although the atmosphere contains many types of gas, one gas accounts for more than 70% of Earth's atmosphere, making it by far the most abundant.

Answer and Explanation:

The most abundant gas in the atmosphere is nitrogen. Nitrogen makes up around 78% of the atmosphere. Nitrogen exists in such abundance because it is volatile in most forms. Nitrogen is also stable in the presence of solar radiation and unreactive with materials that make up the solid Earth. The rest of the atmosphere is made primarily of oxygen, which accounts for 21% of the atmosphere. 0.9% of the atmosphere is made of argon, while the last 0.1% is made of various gasses like methane, carbon dioxide, and ozone.


Learn more about this topic:

Major Components of the Atmosphere

from UExcel Earth Science: Study Guide & Test Prep

Chapter 19 / Lesson 1
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