The environment is a mixture of gases the surround the Earth. That is essential to every life and also serves number of purposes, such as offering air because that respiration, absorbing harmful ultraviolet radiation, protecting the planet from fall meteorites, controlling climate and regulating the water cycle.

You are watching: The second most abundant gas in the atmosphere is

The many abundant gas in the atmosphere is nitrogen. The Earth’s atmosphere is created of approximately 78 percent nitrogen, 21 percent oxygen, 1 percent argon and also trace amounts of various other gases that incorporate carbon dioxide and neon.

Nitrogen is a colorless, unscented and also inert (does not react with various other chemicals) gas. Chemist Daniel Rutherford first discovered this chemical facet in 1772. Nitrogen is the most abundant gas in the atmosphere and the many abundant facet in the atmosphere.

It"s uncovered in all living organisms. Nitrogen is crucial component of amino acids, protein, DNA and also RNA. Every living organisms depend on nitrogen because that growth, metabolic processes and reproduction.

The environment is the primary resource of nitrogen. However, plants and also animals space not may be to usage it directly. Nitrogen beginning the soil through precipitation, animal waste and dead essential matter. Bacteria in the soil transform the nitrogen into ammonium and also nitrate, which room two develops of nitrogen that can be supplied by plants.

Animals then obtain the nitrogen by eat plants and also other animals. Other bacteria in the soil will transform the ammonium and nitrate right into di-nitrogen, leading to nitrogen to it is in released earlier into the atmosphere. This entire procedure is known as the nitrogen cycle.

Oxygen is the second most abundant gas in the atmosphere and also is the third most abundant aspect in the universe. It was uncovered during two different occasions: through Carl-Wilhelm Scheele in 1771 and Joseph priesthood in 1774. Oxygen is odorless, colorless and very reactive with other elements.

Oxygen gas (O2) is compelled by every living organisms because that respiration and is a ingredient of DNA molecules. Plants are able to develop oxygen and release it ago into the atmosphere through a process known as photosynthesis.

Ozone (O3) is a type of oxygen the is current in the earth’s atmosphere. Ozone protects the Earth’s surface ar from ultraviolet radiation by both absorbing and showing harmful rays.


Argon is classified as a noble gas and also is colorless, odorless and relatively inert. Lord Rayleigh and Sir wilhelm Ramsay an initial discovered argon in 1894. That is the 3rd most numerous gas in the atmosphere, but it cannot support life. Argon is considered a straightforward asphyxiant. When inhaled in big amounts, that can reason dizziness, nausea, ns of judgment, suffocation and even death.

Since argon is extremely inert, it is provided in numerous applications such together in incandescent light bulbs, protecting welds native oxidation, insulating gaps in between panes that glass and also as a substitution because that nitrogen as soon as necessary.

Nitrogen, oxygen and argon are the three most abundant facets in the atmosphere, yet there space other crucial components the are compelled for supporting life as we know it ~ above earth.

One the those is carbon dioxide gas. Carbon dioxide makes up 0.04 percent the the Earth"s atmosphere. Made of one atom that carbon external inspection to two oxygen atoms (CO2), carbon dioxide is a an essential component the photosynthesis and also other metabolic processes. Without CO2, autotrophs favor plants and photosynthetic bacteria wouldn"t be able to turn solar energy into usable chemical energy via photosynthesis. This would average there would be no way for power to go into earth"s ecosystems, i m sorry would lead to the death of life ~ above earth.

See more: Twinkle Twinkle Little Star Recorder Letters, Twinkle Twinkle Little Star

Water, H2O, is an additional necessary molecule for life. Girlfriend can find it in its vapor form in the atmosphere.

Based in Ohio, Patricia Arnett has been a experienced freelance writer due to the fact that August 2009. She is knowledgeable in a wide range of fields and has written more than 80 short articles that have been published on miscellaneous online websites. Arnett likewise reviews and also edits newsletters for the American Postal workers Union.