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Where is the Ozone Layer?

Anita Salem, Mathematics, Rockhurst University

Dale Harak, Chemistry, Rockhurst University

with the assistance of

Sharon Anthony, Chemistry, Evergreen State College
Bill Barker, Mathematics, Bowdoin College
Sam Butcher, Chemistry, Bowdoin College

Area of Application: Chemistry

Mathematical Level: Calculus I or II

Purpose: To investigate the question "Where is the ozone layer?" by examining the change in photon flux (a measure of sunlight intensity) as a function of altitude.

Prerequisites: The model results from the solution to a first order separable differential equation. First and second derivatives are used to determine the location of most rapid change in photon flux. A computer algebra system or graphing calculator is strongly recommended for the numerical and graphical analysis of the model.

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Last Modified: October 19, 1999