Conduction is the process where heat energy is transmitted by being in contact with other molecules. In the process of conduction, an object heats by being in physical contact with another hot object. Each object on Earth is a conductor of some sort. Good conductors are those that responded quickly and heat up when heat is applied to them. Metals are an example of a good conductor. This is why metal cooking pans often have wooden or plastic handles. If the handle were metal, it would burn anyone's hand who tried to pick it up off a hot stove. Conversely, some
Energy (heat) is transferred between the Earth's surface and the atmosphere by radiation, conduction, and convection.
items do not heat up rapidly when heat is applied to them, making them poor conductors. Water, wood, and some plastics are examples of poor or moderate conductors.
Air is not a very good conductor. Because of this, most of the energy transfer in the atmosphere involving conduction occurs near the Earth's surface. Because the land heats up quickly during the day and cools off quickly at night, it conducts its heat into the air above it. During the day, when the sunshine heats the land, the land heats the air above it. At night, the ground cools quickly, and because energy travels from hot to cold, it draws heat away from the air above the ground, cooling the air.
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