Welcome to Project Ozone


Project Ozone, from the book Science-As-Inquiry, is designed to assist you in a web-based science inquiry investigation of ozone. Several summers ago, more than 100 scientist gathered in Atlanta to study how smog forms.  As the newspaper article at the time pointed out, most people try to avoid dirty air, but for these researchers conducting studies of urban smog, the best environment is dirty air! In an other newspaper's editorial column a letter urged that "the world must move faster to stop making chemicals that destroy the Earth's protective ozone shield.

Ozone (O3) is a gas that is found concentrated in a small layer in the upper atmosphere, and near the gound in urban areas, especially on hot days.  It is a highly reactive gas with a pungent (sharp and biting) smell. It can cause serious damage to plants, and can adversely affect the human respiratory system. High concentrations of ozone pose a serious health threat not only to people with respiratory disorders, but children and adults, especially if engaged in vigorous activity.

On the positive side, ozone absorbs ultraviolet light.  The ozone layer in the upper atmosphere acts as a planetary shield preventing most of the sun's ultraviolet radiation from reaching the earth's surface. For humans, most skin cancers are associated with exposure to ultraviolet radiation. There is evidence that the protective ozone layer above the earth is deteriorating, and that in some regions, an ozone hole has been detected.

Goals of Project Ozone

  • Explore air pollution by investigating the nature of ozone and how it is formed in the troposphere and the stratosphere.
  • Design studies to explore ground-level ozone in their cities and towns, and then use these results to collaborate with other schools.
  • Use a chemical method to monitor ground-level ozone.
  • Discuss the implications of the deterioration of the protective ozone shield, and what should be done to resolve the problem.
  • Special Materials
  • Project Ozone Special Materials List


    Eco-Badge Kit. Chemical strips to monitor ozone. One kit contains 30 eco-badges and a color card. (Approx. $50)  The Eco Badge® Test Card® Reader.  Zikua® is a hand-held optical reader which will give an instant and precise readout of the Eco Badge® Test CardTM after exposure to ozone.

    Vistanomics, Inc., 230 North Maryland Avenue, Suite 310, Glendale, CA 91206 (818) 409-6695

    Dwyer Hand-Held Wind Measurer. Sturdy device to measure winde. Approximate cost:$15 per measurer

    Forestry Suppliers, Inc. P.O. Box 8397, Jackson, MS 39284 (800) 647-5368

    Psychrometers. Wet and dry bulb thermometers to measure humidity. Sold individually @ $9 per psychrometer.

    Forestry Suppliers, Inc. P.O. Box 8397, Jackson, MS 39284 (800) 647-5368

Questions? Email