Author: TheSmartGuy

If space is a vacuum then why doesn’t it suck in all the air from Earth’s atmosphere?

Ever thought?
Turns there is more than just Gravity to stop our atmosphere from getting sucked in space.
Actually, the answer to this is interesting.

And while gravity is most certainly a real thing, the answer to this question is not “because gravity is stronger.”
The actual answer is that the vacuum of space does not exert any force on the atmosphere at all. It does not “suck” the air. We associate the word “suck” with “vacuums” but it’s a misnomer. That’s not what vacuums do.
Consider an example where we’ve pumped all of the air out of some box and created a vacuum inside of it. Let’s say we’re on Earth, at sea level, and we poke a hole in the box. What will happen?
Air will rush into the box and fill it. Okay. But why did it do that? Was it because the vacuum sucked the air into the box? No.

What’s actually happening there is that the air pressure around the box is forcing air into the space with no pressure. The air that fills the box is being PUSHED by air pressure into the empty space.

Vacuums never “suck” air. What they do is present an empty space and then air pressure forces the air into the vacuum.
Air pressure is not uniform throughout the atmosphere. The lower the altitude, the higher the air pressure; thus, as you move higher, the air pressure decreases.

In fact, at the upper limits of the atmosphere, the air pressure reduces to basically nil.
And since there’s no real air pressure to speak of up there, then there is no force pushing the air into the empty space.

Now, this doesn’t mean gravity isn’t at work here. In fact, gravity is the reason we have air pressure in the first place. Gravity pulls on the atmosphere, compressing it, and creating pressure.

Image result for gravity

If we could magically turn off gravity then the atmosphere would be released from that compression and spring away from the Earth.
So, at the root of it, gravity is the thing that keeps the atmosphere near the surface. It just isn’t fighting the vacuum of space to do it.

Source:: QUORA, LH


Why do some refineries chimneys have a constant burning flame on top of them?

Why do some refineries chimneys have a constant burning flame on top of them?

Ever Wondered?

The tower with constant burning flame is called Flare Stack alternatively known as Gas Flare.

Flare Stack, is a gas combustion device used in industrial plants such as petroleum refineries, chemical plants, natural gas processing plants as well as at oil or gas production sites having oil wells, gas wells, offshore oil and gas rigs and landfills.

So, what purpose have a flare stack holds?

It is used as a last line of defense/safety for refineries, petrochemical and gas processing plants.

The flare system consists of the Flare Stack and a flare header. A very large network of pipes coming from the different processes feed into the header. Whenever there is an upset or an emergency situation, all the extremely flammable hydrocarbons need to be vented out. But these cannot be just put in the atmosphere like the steam from our food pressure cookers. A vapor cloud would be extremely hazardous and catastrophic. To ensure that these escaping gases get burned to Carbon dioxide and water vapor, a flame is always kept burning on the top. It is a  necessary evil (waste of gas). 

The location of a fire stack is also very important. It is located far away from the main processing complex in the downwind direction. It is very tall so that radiation heat may not affect people and equipments.

Now you know!!

Source:: ,  LH