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How much does the atmosphere weigh over each square meter of surface? Express this in tonnes (units of 1000 kg). Recall the conversion factors: 104 cm2 = 1 m2; 1 ton = 1000 kg = 106 g.
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The column of air over 1 cm2 weighs 1 kg. First determine how many cm2 are in 1 m2. This can be determined as follows:

Since a 1 x 1 m square also has the dimensions 100 x 100 cm, then 1 m2 = 100 cm x 100 cm = 10,000 cm2 = 104 cm2.

Next determine the weight of the column of air. This can be done several ways. One way is to set the problem up as a proportionality:

1 cm2/1kg = 104 cm2/X

Cross-multiplying yields:

1 cm2 x X = 1 kg x 104 cm2

Solving for X:

X = 104 kg

The question asks that the number be expressed as tons. Recall that 1000 kg = 1 ton. Solve as follows:

104 kg x 1 ton/103 kg = 101 tons  = 10 metric tons
Biology!
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3 years ago
Great answer Slight Smile
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3 years ago
Thanks a lot!
Machiavelli
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