[trop-uh-sfeer, troh-puh-]
See more synonyms for troposphere on
noun Meteorology.
  1. the lowest layer of the atmosphere, 6 miles (10 km) high in some areas and as much as 12 miles (20 km) high in others, within which there is a steady drop in temperature with increasing altitude and within which nearly all cloud formations occur and weather conditions manifest themselves.

Origin of troposphere

First recorded in 1905–10; tropo- + sphere
Related formstrop·o·spher·ic [trop-uh-sfer-ik, -sfeer-, troh-puh-] /ˌtrɒp əˈsfɛr ɪk, -ˈsfɪər-, ˌtroʊ pə-/, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for troposphere

Historical Examples of troposphere

  • Here, well above the troposphere, the air was thin and always clear.

    Islands of Space

    John W Campbell

  • At last Ken leveled off in the troposphere, at an altitude of five miles.

    Fly By Night

    Arthur Dekker Savage

  • In distinction from the stratosphere, the part of the atmosphere lying below it is called the troposphere.


    Charles Fitzhugh Talman

  • Below this level is the troposphere, the turbulent zone of clouds, rain, and fog.

  • Investigators have noted the importance of rain or snow in washing fallout particles from the air in the troposphere.

British Dictionary definitions for troposphere


  1. the lowest atmospheric layer, about 18 kilometres (11 miles) thick at the equator to about 6 km (4 miles) at the Poles, in which air temperature decreases normally with height at about 6.5°C per km
Derived Formstropospheric (ˌtrɒpəˈsfɛrɪk), 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

Word Origin and History for troposphere

1914, from French troposphère, literally "sphere of change," coined by French meteorologist Philippe Teisserenc de Bort (1855-1913) from Greek tropos "a turn, change" (see trope) + sphaira "sphere" (see sphere).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

troposphere in Science


[trōpə-sfîr′, trŏpə-]
  1. The lowest and densest region of the Earth's atmosphere, extending from the Earth's surface to the tropopause. The troposphere is characterized by temperatures that decrease with increasing altitude. At the top of this region, temperatures are close to -55°C (-67°F). The weather, major wind systems, and cloud formations occur mostly in the troposphere. See also exosphere mesosphere stratosphere thermosphere. See illustration at atmosphere.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

troposphere in Culture


[(troh-puh-sfeer, trop-uh-sfeer)]

The lowest layer of the atmosphere of the Earth, extending from ground level to an altitude of seven to ten miles.

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.