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mesosphere

[mez-uh-sfeer, mes-, mee-zuh-, -suh-] /ˈmɛz əˌsfɪər, ˈmɛs-, ˈmi zə-, -sə-/
noun
1.
(in the classification of the earth's atmosphere by chemical properties) the region between the ionosphere and the exosphere, extending from about 250–650 miles (400–1050 km) above the surface of the earth.
2.
(in the classification of the earth's atmosphere by thermal properties) the region between the stratosphere and the thermosphere, extending from about 20–50 miles (32–80 km) above the surface of the earth.
Origin of mesosphere
1945-1950
1945-50; meso- + -sphere
Related forms
mesospheric
[mez-uh-sfer-ik, mes-, mee-zuh-, -suh-] /ˌmɛz əˈsfɛr ɪk, ˌmɛs-, ˌmi zə-, -sə-/ (Show IPA),
adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for mesosphere
Historical Examples
  • What about the incidence of penetrating meteors in the mesosphere?

    A Fine Fix R. C. Noll
British Dictionary definitions for mesosphere

mesosphere

/ˈmɛsəʊˌsfɪə/
noun
1.
the atmospheric layer lying between the stratosphere and the thermosphere, characterized by a rapid decrease in temperature with height
2.
the solid part of the earth's mantle lying between the asthenosphere and the core
Derived Forms
mesospheric (ˌmɛsəʊˈsfɛrɪk) adjective
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for mesosphere
n.

1950, from meso- + second element in atmosphere.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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mesosphere in Science
mesosphere
  (měz'ə-sfîr')   
The region of the Earth's atmosphere lying above the stratosphere and below the thermosphere, from a height of about 50 km (31 mi) to about 80 km (50 mi) above the Earth's surface. In the mesosphere temperatures decrease with increasing altitude due to the decreasing absorption of ultraviolet radiation from the Sun. At the top of this region temperatures are around -95°C (-135.4°F). Most of the meteors that enter Earth's atmosphere burn up while passing through the mesosphere. See also exosphere, stratosphere, thermosphere, troposphere., See illustration at atmosphere.

The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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