why do meteors burn up in the mesosphere

Why do meteors burn up in the mesosphere?

I would really like to know, even though I already know that a tremendously large part of a meteor burns up in the mesosphere.

Now the mesosphere is the piece of the environment between the stratosphere and the thermosphere.

The mesosphere exists between 50 and 85 kilometers above the Earth’s surface.

This is where the majority of meteoroids that enter the atmosphere disintegrate. 

Meteors are heated by the friction of the air, then the air molecules rub against the meteors, causing them to heat up. The meteor continues to heat up as it falls, and eventually, the heat becomes too much for the meteor to handle.

At this point, the meteor begins to break apart and burn up. Let’s now look at why meteors burn up in the mesosphere in detail.

Where Do Meteors Originate?

where meteors originate

Several people have wondered about the origin of the meteor. But there are a few different ways that meteors can originate.

I am going to show you the origins right away.

Origin #1: Residue From Comets

Meteor showers occur when the Earth passes through the residue of a comet. 

When a comet revolves around the sun, it leaves behind a path of debris.

This residue is made up of dust and small rocks. Over time, the residue spreads out along the comet’s path.

The earth passes through some of these comet orbits every year. We see a meteor shower when it does.

The meteors are the residue from the comet, burning up as it reaches our atmosphere. 

The majority of meteor showers are brought about by comet garbage, but a couple of showers are brought about by space rocks. 

Tip: The most significant of these is the Perseid meteor shower, which is produced by comet Swift-Tuttle residue.

Origin #2: Debris From Asteroids

asteroid debris

Asteroids are tiny, airless, rocky worlds revolving around the sun. 

They are residues of the solar system’s billions of years of formation.

Most asteroids orbit in a zone between Mars and Jupiter named the asteroid belt.

A meteor is formed by an asteroid, which is a piece of space rock. They are of different sizes, and some are also too small to be seen with the eyes.

When an asteroid meteor enters Earth’s atmosphere, it evaporates and becomes a streak of light in the sky.

If an asteroid meteor is large enough, it can create an impact crater.

Asteroid meteors come from a variety of sources. Some are fragments of comets that have broken up.

Others are bits that have been chipped off asteroids by collisions. The rest comes from the breakup of larger asteroids.

Note: When a meteoroid enters the earth's atmosphere, it slows down because it is pushing against the air, and the air pushes back against the meteoroid.

Origin #3: Bits Of Interstellar Dust

interstellar dust

Meteoroids are formed from interstellar dust and ice. 

Their sizes range from a few micrometers to several meters.

Interstellar dust particles on meteors are so small that they completely evaporate in the atmosphere and never reach the ground.

They are composed of various elements such as carbon, silicon, and iron.

And it is believed that they arose from the death of a star that created metal, in which case the star explodes at its end to form a meteor. 

The majority of this material originates in interstellar space, where it combines with other elements to form dust.

Note: It should be noted that these dust particles accumulate extension atoms of abundant carbon elements.

Why Do Meteors Burn Up In The Mesosphere Layer?

meteors burn mesosphere

The reason for this is that as meteors enter the earth’s atmosphere, the friction causes them to heat up.

The lower they fall, the hotter it becomes. They eventually reach a point where they are on fire. 

They burn up because the atmosphere in the mesosphere is much thinner than in the lower atmosphere.

Because there is insufficient air resistance to slow them down, they continue to fall faster and faster until they break apart.

Note: Meteors can go through the thermosphere and exosphere without numerous hardships as a result of the absence of air in those layers.

Why Do Meteors Explode Before Reaching Earth? 

The Earth’s atmosphere is said to be a powerful barrier against meteors.

The majority of them explode in mid-air before they reach the Earth’s surface.

meteor exploding

We’ll see a shooting star and even make a wish if it’s the size of a grain of sand. 

If it is larger, we will see a ball of fire in the sky, which will most likely frighten us. And if it’s much larger, like a bus, and explodes in the sky, we should be concerned. 

A meteor must be at least the size of an olive or walnut to cause a fireball.

Similarly, the brighter the fireball will be, the larger it will be, and the faster it will move.

At the point when meteors wreck in the mesosphere, they can cause maybe a couple of kinds of outcomes.

One is that the air can warm up from the consuming meteor, and this can cause choppiness in the environment. 

Moreover, the meteor can likewise deliver synthetics and trash into the climate, which can affect the climate in numerous ways.

At last, the consuming meteor can likewise make a brilliant light overhead, which can be problematic to individuals on the ground.

Common Consequences Of Meteors Burning In The Mesosphere 

consequences of meteors burning

When meteors burn up in the mesosphere, they can cause a few different types of consequences.

One is that the air can heat up from the burning meteor, and this can create turbulence in the atmosphere. 

Additionally, the meteor can also release chemicals and debris into the atmosphere, which can impact the environment in many ways. 

Finally, the burning meteor can also create a bright light in the sky, which can be disruptive to people on the ground.

Ways To Prevent Meteors From Burning In Mesosphere

Meteors burning in the mesosphere can be avoided in several ways.

Prevention #1: Meteor Shield

A meteor shield is a device that is designed to protect a person or object from the heat of a meteor.

It is a large, thin sheet of metal that is placed in front of a spacecraft to protect it from small pieces of space debris.

Meteor shields are usually made of aluminum or titanium. 

meteor shield

These materials can reflect or absorb the heat of a meteor.

The most common type of meteor shield is a heat shield. Heat shields are made of materials that can reflect or absorb the heat of a meteor. 

Note: Meteor shields can also be made of other materials, such as glass or metal, that can reflect or absorb the heat of a meteor.

Prevention #2: Meteor Capture

When a meteor enters the atmosphere, it begins to heat up as it collides with air molecules.

If the meteor is large enough, it can completely burn up before it reaches the ground.

To prevent this from happening, scientists have developed a giant net that can capture a meteor in mid-flight.

The net is made of a special heat-resistant material that can withstand the intense heat of the meteor.

Once the meteor has been captured, it is slowly lowered to the ground to be studied.

This is an excellent way to learn about the composition and formation of these space rocks.

meteor in the atmosphere
Note: A meteor capture net is a large net that is placed around a spacecraft to catch meteors, and any small pieces of space debris that come close to the spacecraft are caught by the net.

What Layers Of The Atmosphere Do Meteors Turn Into Ash?

As meteors enter the Earth’s atmosphere, they begin to break apart and turn into ashes. 

The layers of the atmosphere that they pass through include the thermosphere, the ionosphere, and the exosphere. 

Each layer has a different temperature, and the meteors experience a lot of friction as they travel through the atmosphere. 

This friction causes the meteors to heat up and break apart into smaller pieces.

Eventually, the meteors turn into ashes and are dispersed throughout the atmosphere.

How The Earth Benefits From Meteors Burning Up In The Mesosphere

The earth benefits from meteors in several ways.

Meteors help keep the atmosphere clean by burning up harmful gases and particles.

They provide us with a valuable source of minerals and other materials.

studying earth

Meteors offer us a unique opportunity to study our planet and its history.

Note: The air resistance slows the meteor down and causes it to heat up and can cause the meteor to break apart.


As we have seen, meteors burn up in the mesospheric atmosphere because of the friction created by the high speeds at which they travel. 

This friction causes the temperature of the meteor to increase, causing it to vaporize.

The vaporization process creates a bright light that is often seen by people on the ground. 

So when next you are asked about meteors in the atmosphere, you should be able to tell about “what layers do meteors burn up in” and “why do meteors burn up in the mesosphere?

You should be able to do justice to the questions.