Atmospheric pressure atop Mt. Everest is 3.30×104 N/m2. (a) What is the partial pressure of oxygen there if it is 20.9% of the air? (b) What percent oxygen should a mountain climber breathe so that its partial pressure is the same as at sea level, where atmospheric pressure is 1.01×105 N/m2 ? (c) One of the most severe problems for those climbing very high mountains is the extreme drying of breathing passages. Why does this drying occur?
a.)The partial pressure of oxygen at sea level is 6.90 x103 Pa
b.) The mountain climber should breathe 64.2 % of oxygen at the top of Mt. Everest to maintain the same partial pressure as at sea level.
c.)This drying process occurs because the partial pressure of water vapor at high altitude decreased substantially. The climber breathes very dry air, which leads to a lot of moisture lost due to evaporation. The breathing passage therefore not getting the moisture that they require for the air being breathed.