Unified Theory of Climate, Nikolov and Zeller

Posted: December 28, 2011 by tchannon in Astrophysics, atmosphere, climate, Geomagnetism, Ice ages, Solar physics, solar system dynamics
unified-1

Figure 10

Unified Theory of Climate
Expanding the Concept of Atmospheric Greenhouse Effect Using
Thermodynamic Principles:
Implications for Predicting Future Climate Change
Ned Nikolov, Ph.D. & Karl Zeller, Ph.D.
Emails: ntconsulting@comcast.net kzeller@colostate.edu

Extended version of the poster presented at the Open Science Conference of the World Climate Research Program, 24 October 2011, Denver CO, USA http://www.wcrp-climate.org/conference2011/posters/C7/C7_Nikolov_M15A.pdf

Abstract

We present results from a new critical review of the atmospheric Greenhouse (GH) concept. Three main problems are identified with the current GH theory. It is demonstrated that thermodynamic principles  based on the Ideal Gas Law must be invoked to fully explain the Natural Greenhouse Effect, which essence is the boost of global surface temperature above that of an airless planet exposed to the same solar irradiance. We show via a novel analysis of planetary climates in the solar system that the physical nature of the so-called Greenhouse Effect is in fact a Pressure-induced Thermal Enhancement (PTE), which is independent of the atmospheric chemical composition. Hence, the down-welling infrared radiation (a.k.a. greenhouse- or back-radiation) is a product of the atmospheric temperature (maintained by solar heating and air pressure) rather than a cause for it. In other words, our results suggest that the GH effect is a thermodynamic phenomenon, not a radiative one as presently assumed. This finding leads to a new and very different paradigm of climate controls. Results from our research are combined with those from other studies to propose a Unified Theory of Climate, which explains a number of phenomena that the current theory fails to explain. Implications of the new paradigm for predicting future climate trends are briefly discussed.

Dr Nikolov and Dr Zeller presented their research results in a poster session at the Open Science Conference of the World Climate Research Program (WCRP) on October 24, 2011 in Denver CO, USA (see http://www.wcrp-climate.org/conference2011/).

This wall poster created interest, particularly in the on-line community so Dr Nikolov created a new expanded version as a normal document, and has provided a copy via email for posting on Tallbloke’s Talkshop. Thank you Dr Nikolov.

Unified Theory of Climate document (PDF 1.2M)

There is more on the way. “This write-up is only a summary of our research results detailed in 4 papers which we are currently preparing for submission to a peer-reviewed journal.”

h/t chain to Talkshop regular p.g.sharrow and chiefio who blogged of the poster’s existence.

Post by Tim Channon

Comments
  1. tchannon says:

    Can we please keep comments on this article reasonably on topic. you are being given first look at something significant.

    (I’ve hidden some comments)

  2. adolfogiurfa says:

    As there is no magnetism without electricity, or without charge, the current paradigm is dead. Nature works through the opposition of charges.
    The new (or rather traditional and old) paradigm is the Electric Universe:

    http://www.holoscience.com/

  3. J Martin says:

    This vindicates Huffman and his Venus theory.

  4. p.g.sharrow says:

    “a Pressure-induced Thermal Enhancement (PTE), which is independent of the atmospheric chemical composition.”

    If we are going to use gas pressure laws to determine results of atmospheric conditions we must also consider chemical composition. Gasses occupy their space independently and effect molecular compounds such as CO2 and H2O. H2 and O2 effects water, N2 does not. Ammonia is effected by the density of H2 and N2 and not O2. There is very little CO2 in the atmosphere and much less carbon, so can have almost no effect on the behavior of the atmosphere.

    On earth the percentage of O2 of the atmospheric pressure determines the behavior of H2O,water, both in the atmosphere and at the interface of the oceans surface. The behavior of water in this planets surface conditions sets the planets average surface temperature as well as the average ocean temperature. Solar input can only change those averages if it changes the surface density/pressure. At 350 ppm, 1/3 of 1%, carbon dioxide adds very little to the pressure on water. At 3,000ppm,3%, CO2 would add a great deal to the surface pressure and a real increase to the average temperature of both the atmosphere and the ocean.

    If you check temperature and volcanic events, you will see a drop in temperature due to the dust haze and then a raise to a higher level as the dust clears, then a slow cool down as the gas compounds are scrubbed out by the wind,wave interface.

    Increased solar activity will speed up the actions of water to pump energy from the surface to space and will speed up the scrubbing action of weather to increase energy lose. Temperature can only increase if the surface pressure increases.

    All of the above is only important for long term climate conditions. Short term changes in weather, 60 years and less, are caused by local events and short term changes in energy input.

  5. George says:

    Maybe we are getting closer to being able to model the response of the climate, but I’m not convinced. It would still be too complicated to model, I think.

    You almost have to envision lots of heat pipes from the surface of the ocean extending up to the atmosphere at various, constantly changing heights and locations. Water that evaporates in the Pacific might condense over the Sierra Nevada so it absorbed heat at sea level (about 2250 kJ/liter) when the water changed state from liquid to gas. Then it releases 2250 kJ/liter at 20,000 feet over California when it condenses into cloud and then maybe releases another 330 kJ/liter if the water changes state again to snow. That release of energy was a long way from where the water evaporated and the heat released above much of Earth’s CO2. In the meantime, that patch of ocean is still radiating LWIR at night.

    Convection alone can’t account for the massive movement of heat caused by 1.356e+15 liters of water evaporating each day. just from the latent heat involved in the phase change, the change in temperature of the fluid notwithstanding. Just the simple act of changing from gas to liquid results in a large release of heat energy, often at altitude, that is more than the amount released from simply cooling that final degree of temperature.

    Earth’s oceans are the evaporative side of a huge absorption refrigeration unit. You have a black body with an active refrigeration system acting on it in addition to radiation and convection. In effect, what you have is a surface at sea level absorbing radiation and a surface at altitude radiating that heat (well, billions of surfaces of each drop/droplet). They can try to include convection and they can try to include cloud albedo / re-radiation but I don’t see anyone including the operation of latent heat in the water-based refrigeration system. Earth’s atmosphere is more complex than a simple convection cooling system, it also has an absorption refrigerator with the condenser often at tens of thousands of feet up.

  6. George says:

    In other words, with convection the atmosphere is like a lava lamp. This is pretty much how air will act. If you heat up the land surface, the air will rise and cool at altitude (low pressure system) and then fall back to the surface (high pressure system). So you can think of that like maybe a gravity-based cooling system where you have a fluid that doesn’t change physical state (no latent heat involved) that moves heat around.

    The moment you introduce a fluid in the mix that changes state and has such a high latent heat as water, then all bets are off and it begins to swamp convection as the main driver of cooling.

  7. Scott Denning says:

    On clear nights in winter it gets much colder than on cloudy nights, even when the pressure-induced thermal enhancement is identical. This experimental evidence directly refutes the assumptions of the authors.

    The difference in nighttime cooling on clear vs cloudy nights directly contradicts the assumption made by the authors that radiative cooling is independent of chemical composition. Another easy experiment which disproves their assumption is to heat two objects with different chemical composition (say ceramic and copper) to the same temperature and measure their rates of radiative cooling with time.

    It is patently obvious that pressure affects temperature, as was demonstrated in the 19th Century. But it is absurd to assume, as the authors do, that this is the ONLY influence on temperature. Everyday experience easily falsifies their theory.

  8. tchannon says:

    George,

    I think you might be a little at cross purposes, are two things going on.

    Pure thermals are one thing, relatively small.

    Phase change takes in heat, moves the heat as very buoyant gas and then phase change again dumping the heat high up. Foliage is one of the vapour creators.

    These are details, the presence of consistent equations between planets is very powerful.

  9. erl happ says:

    George says:
    “it also has an absorption refrigerator with the condenser often at tens of thousands of feet up.”

    It is not only vertically but also horizontally displaced. The winter hemisphere in the mid latitudes sees an increase in surface pressure that has the effect of enhancing radiation from the atmosphere.

    So I agree that ‘Convection alone can’t account for the massive movement of heat’

    But aside from that quibble this is a seminal paper. The prediction of planetary surface temperature from variables unrelated to atmospheric composition is the game changing contribution.

    Will this revelation make a difference?

    From Jon at WA “Students of history know what happens when small minds start dressing up in uniforms, giving awards to each other and bossing people around, this is the modern Australia”

    It was never about the science. Will this paper affect what is written into the next UNIPCC assessment? That’s the big test.

    But first, lets see if it affects the attitude of luke-warmers like Monkton, Eschenbach and Spencer.

    Its good to see this statement:

    “independent small changes in albedo are possible and do occur owning to 1%-3% secular variations in cloud cover, which are most likely driven by solar magnetic activity. These cloud-cover changes cause ±0.7C semi-periodic fluctuations in global temperature on a decadal to centennial time scale as indicated by recent satellite observations”.

    And I look forward to the papers that are to come. Will they get through the publication hurdle?

  10. Don Keiller says:

    tchannon- please enlighten me on your “hidden comments”.

    By the way do you think that the Government should be brainwashing schoolchildren about the
    terrors of “climate change”?

    [ I'll email you, nothing sinister going on, oh, is that all stuff -- Tim]

  11. lolwot says:

    This theory is fundamentally wrong.

    Atmospheric pressure does not generate heat. In the paper they cite “the process of star formation, where gravity-induced rise of gas pressure boosts the temperature of an interstellar cloud to the threshold of nuclear fusion”. But that’s not constant pressure generating heat, it’s compression.

    The Earth’s atmosphere is not compressing. Pressure itself does not generate heat. That violates the 1st law of thermodynamics. Otherwise pressurized gas canisters would be constant heat sources.

    [ lowwat, try reading the pdf again, and I quote "Pressure by itself is not a source of energy!" -- Tim]

  12. (1) As Giurfa says, you ‘ve got to look at the electric universe material. This is totally parallel to Climate Science (and the fate of Wegner), insofar as the truly workable hypothesis has been developed to a high degree yet is still completely rubbished by the “consensus”. In particular, this affects the concepts relating to stellar evolution, as per diagram here.

    (2) P G Sharrow “If we are going to use gas pressure laws to determine results of atmospheric conditions we must also consider chemical composition”. So one might assume. But Huffman’s figures show, finely and consistently, that this appears to be irrelevant, and that the driving forces are (a) distance from the Sun (b) atmospheric pressure. That simple.

    (3) Erl Happ: will this paper get published? My thought is, unlikely, seeing the failure of that brilliant paper that showed that doubling atmospheric pressure would explain (a) pterodactyl flight (b) dinosaur size. Oh, and the climate science problem. Oh, and the suppression of the Electric Universe material. However, Russia is better at present, they’ve published on natural plant alchemy and other things we should be not just supporting but shouting about.

    (4) my own thought: any room for incorporating Miskolczi here? I think he deserves recognition plus his work must fit somewhere into this.

  13. Ray Tomes says:

    What about the ocean’s heat content on scales of 10 – 1000 years?

  14. u.k.(us) says:

    George says:
    December 28, 2011 at 9:07 pm
    “In other words, with convection the atmosphere is like a lava lamp.”……
    =====
    While way out of my depth, I visualize it as surface tension.

  15. tallbloke says:

    Lolwot: “Pressure itself does not generate heat.”

    True, but perhaps not fundamental to the theory.

    Pressure waves and flows in a gravity field will cause heat gain, and loss, within areas of bounded systems. Since it is the surface temperature we are interested in here, not the overall energy of the system, the heating of the surface by natural convective processes operating in a pressurized field may be key to the findings.

    More study required.

  16. Brian H says:

    Temperature and pressure: Imagine the atmosphere in a bounded space or container, but not sitting in a gravity well, at a consistent temperature and pressure throughout. Now, dump it onto a planet’s surface. It will compress at the bottom and heat up there, and thin at the top and cool off there. No change in total heat content involved.

  17. Brian H says:

    If the formulae in the article hold up, it means that luke-warmers aren’t even luke-warm, and warmists are ice-cold.

    Heart-warming!

  18. Initially balked at “the GH effect is a thermodynamic phenomenon, not a radiative one”; I am printing out the paper to put under my pillow for nocturnal osmosis.

  19. Richard111 says:

    “”Lolwot: “Pressure itself does not generate heat.”

    True, but perhaps not fundamental to the theory.””

    Hmm.. when you increase the pressure on a gas work is being done, not so?

    Anyway, thanks for the pdf. This one of my personal biases so will read it with great interest.

  20. Stephen Wilde says:

    “According to our new theory, the climate change over the past 100-300 years is due to variations of global cloud albedo that are not related to GHE/ATE”

    Been there, done that:

    http://climaterealists.com/attachments/ftp/TheUnifyingTheoryofEarthsClimate.pdf

    as regards the title and some of the conclusions

    and

    http://climaterealists.com/index.php?id=6645

    “How The Sun Coul;d Control Earth’s Temperature”

    as regards the effect of cloudiness changes.

    and

    “The fundamental point is that the total atmospheric warming arising as a result of the density of the atmosphere is a once and for all netting out of all the truly astronomic number of radiant energy/molecule encounters throughout the atmosphere. The only things that can change that resultant point of temperature equilibrium are changes in solar radiance coming in or changes in overall atmospheric density which affect the radiant energy going out. In the real world the most obvious and most common reason for a change in atmospheric density occurs naturally when the oceans are in warming mode and solar irradiation is high as during the period 1975 to 1998. The increased warmth allows the atmosphere to hold more water vapour so that total atmospheric density increases and the atmospheric greenhouse effect strengthens. This effect is far greater than any CO2 effect. When the atmosphere cools again water vapour content declines and the atmospheric greenhouse effect weakens. CO2 and other trace gases are far too small a proportion of the atmosphere to have any significant effect in comparison to the water vapour effect. Even the water vapour effect has never provoked any tipping point in the face of the primary solar/oceanic driver so CO2 could never do so.”

    from here:

    http://climaterealists.com/index.php?id=1562&linkbox=true&position=7

    “Greenhouse Confusion Resoived”.

    as regards the density issue.

    “Global surface temperature is independent of the down-welling LW flux known as greenhouse or back radiation, because both quantities derive from the same pool of atmospheric kinetic energy maintained by solar heating and air pressure. Variations in the downward LW flux (caused by an increase of tropospheric emissivity, for example) are completely counterbalanced (offset) by changes in the rate of surface convective cooling, for this is how the system conserves its internal energy.”

    Quite so:

    http://climaterealists.com/index.php?id=7798

    “The Setting And Maintaining of Earth’s Equilibrium Temperature”

    “ANYTHING that adds energy to or takes energy from the air just above the ocean
    surface merely adds to or subtracts from the rate of evaporation (not affecting the background
    energy flow from water to air at all) and is converted to or from latent heat in the air in the
    process. Of course conduction from water to air and upward radiation are also involved but
    the energy taken up by them simply reduces the energy available for evaporation.
    The equilibrium temperature of the oceans is in fact determined by the combination of
    atmospheric pressure and the physical properties of the molecular bonds between liquid water
    molecules and water vapour molecules. Critically it is dependent on the energy cost or gain of
    the switch between liquid to vapour and back again. I need to explain that in some detail.”

  21. Mydogsgotnonose says:

    Don’t know if anyone else has noticed it but this paper has re-invented lapse rate heating.

    The also believe in ‘back radiation’: silly people it can do no thermodynamic work.

    3/10 for effort.

  22. colliemum says:

    Looking very much forward to the comments by the cognoscenti here, seeing that I’m not a physicist, and in need of further education.
    Lucy Skywalker’s was especially illuminating, thanks.

  23. Stephen Wilde says:

    A major point of this paper is the observation that the warmth at the surface is a thermodynamic effect and not a radiative effect.

    It fits nicely with the description that I published back in May 2008

    “The fundamental point is that the total atmospheric warming arising as a result of the density of the atmosphere is a once and for all netting out of all the truly astronomic number of radiant energy/molecule encounters throughout the atmosphere. The only things that can change that resultant temperature equilibrium are changes in solar radiance coming in or changes in overall atmospheric density which affect the radiant energy going out”

    from here:

    http://climaterealists.com/index.php?id=1562&linkbox=true&position=7

    ” Greenhouse Confusion Resolved”

    Obviously the final outcome of the thermodynamic process is radiative but the process itself is not radiative.

    The denser an atmosphere the more tightly packed the molecules of whatever gas it is comprised of. The tighter the packing the more resistance there is to the transmission of radiative energy because the individual molecules are more easily able to pass kinetic energy between themselves multiple times before it is finally released back to space in radiative form.

    It doesn’t matter whether the constituents of the atmosphere are generally transparent to light or not. The fact is that whatever the radiative characteristics of individual molecules they all act together thermodynamically when under pressure.

    To illustrate that we can all see that the Oxygen and Nitrogen molecules near the surface are at much the same temperature as the GHG molecules near the surface DESPITE their different thermal characteristics in terms of radiative ability.

    Thus the effect of atmospheric density and pressure is to dictate the surface temperature regardless of composition.

    This paper neatly deals with the ‘problem’ of explaining why composition is less important than density and validates the assertions I made in my article back in 2009.

    That said, GHGs do have a thermal effect but it is not one that increases the system energy content as a whole as I have explained elsewhere. Instead all they achieve on our watery world is to provke a negative system response that precisely cancels out their warming effect in exchange for a miniscule adjustment in the speed of the water cycle and a miniscule adjustment in the surface air pressure distribution.

    The authors clearly agree with me on that point too because they say:

    “Variations in the downward LW flux (caused by an increase of tropospheric emissivity, for example) are completely counterbalanced (offset) by changes in the rate of surface convective cooling, for this is how the system conserves its internal energy.”

    That accords with my contention that although GHGs slow down the rate of energy loss to space the redistribution of surface air pressure acting via a faster water cycle cancels it out again for a zero net effect on total system energy content.

    My work then goes on to link all that to solar activity from above and oceanic variability from below for a more complete Unified Theory than that presented here (IMHO).

    In particular I don’t think it is magnetic variability that achieves the observed effects but rather wavelength changes acting on ozone differentially at different levels in the atmospheric column.

  24. [...] left a link to an interesting article at WUWT (originally at Tallbloke’s talk shop).   It claims that by integrating convection into the radiative transfer equations, that the [...]

  25. P.G. Sharrow says:

    The increased pressure, or decrease, does not change the air temperature. It changes the temperature point of evaporation of water and therefor the set point for temperature. The thermostat’s set point for the refrigeration system is the air pressure on water. pg

  26. GeologyJim says:

    Great discussions here and elsewhere, but I think some are missing a critical point. As depicted in fig 10 at the top of this post, the geological addition of mass to the atmosphere will be expected to influence temp trends over long time periods (hundreds of thousands to tens of million years).

    I think it’s counterproductive to try analyzing the implications of this against millennial time scales or anything shorter.

    Lucy Skywalker’s note points to possible implications for pterodactyl flight – intriguing.

    Geologists have tried to estimate paleo-altitude by measuring the size and volume of vesicles (gas bubbles) in lava flows — – but the calibration depends on the lapse rate of pressure/altitude. If sea level atmospheric pressure was not a constant, then lapse-rate calibrations are lost.

    Fascinating

  27. Nice one Tallbloke! I hope you won’t mind me hanging out here in future.

    J Martin says:
    “This vindicates Huffman and his Venus theory”

    Exactly what I thought; Huffman is most convincing. However he does not seem to know that Nikolov & Karl Zeller are his friends. He got decidedly Huffy with them on WUWT:

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2011/12/29/unified-theory-of-climate/#comment-846661

  28. Stephen Wilde says:

    PGS,

    The pressure plus energy input and the properties of water molecules set the temperature or rather the energy content of the entire system including the oceans.

    A change of pressure does, as you say change the temperature point for evaporation and in doing so would alter the system energy cost of evaporation. That energy cost of evaporation dictates the rate at which energy can leave the oceans to the air and that sets the equilibrium temperature of the oceans for a given rate of energy input. Global atmospheric pressure does not change significantly on human timescales.

    http://climaterealists.com/attachments/ftp/TheSettingAndMaintainingOfEarth.pdf

    So you are correct that air pressure on water does set the thermostat for the system as a whole, but not regional air temperatures across the surface. The latter is a function of the rate of energy flow across the surface on its way out to space.That is determined by the speed or size of the water cycle and the positions of the permanent climate zones.

    Nikolov and Zeller are correct as far as they go but they do not yet go as far as I do in applying those findings to the broader climate system.

    I find it very satisfying that they are providing real quantitative science in support of the qualitative points I have been advancing for some time.

  29. [...] was apparently condensed to a statement called the Unified Theory of Climate.  I believe it originally was carried by Tallbloke.  Anthony covered it at WUWT.  Sadly, the committed heresy to climatology by writing the [...]

  30. Dave Springer says:

    “This wall poster created interest, particularly in the on-line community”

    That’s because the scientific community has a better grasp of physics than the online community.

    I sure hope you haven’t bought into this malarky, Tallbloke. That will lower the price of your stock in my book by quite a bit.

    Temperature does not determine pressure in planetary atmospheres and the converse must also be true – pressure does determine temperature. Pressure is determined by the acceleration of gravity, the composition of the atmosphere, and the number of moles in the vertical column. Unlike in a bottle if you raise or lower the temperature of an atmosphere it will not change the surface pressure. The converse must also hold true. Think about it.

  31. tallbloke says:

    Hi Dave,
    The thing that strikes me is that since the atmosphere is bounded by space, the height of the tropopause will float up and down for several reasons. Hence while you are right that it’s different to a bell jar experiment, it could be that there is something worthwhile in what these guys have been thinking about for other reasons.

    Like I said earlier: More study required.

  32. Dave Springer,
    Pressure rules! Take a look at this discussion on “Science of Doom”:

    http://scienceofdoom.com/2010/06/12/venusian-mysteries/

  33. erl happ says:

    Tim Channon,
    I was impressed by your reference to the Temperature of Jericho. A good lead.

    On the WUWT thread Tim Ball remarks that the ideas presented here have a history namely at: http://ruby.fgcu.edu/courses/twimberley/EnviroPhilo/FunctionOfMass.pdf

    At the end of that paper by Hans Jelbring we have this delightful comment:

    5. ACKNOWLEDGEMENT
    The author thanks Inventex Aqua ab, Ekero, Sweden for the financial support without
    which this paper would not have been produced and two brave anonymous peer
    reviewers making the publication a fact.

    Published in ‘Energy and Environment’. As we well know its not what you know but who you know.

    Lucy Skywalker impresses with her insight and practicality with this observation:

    “(This post led me to observe three things so obvious I suspect we simply forget them: the amazingly horizontal line of snow on the hills; the amazingly horizontal lines of most cloud undersides; and the heat of deep underground mines, in contrast to deep undersea temperatures. All direct effects of pressure in the compressible medium of air.)”

    Tallbloke, don’t worry about the price of your stock. It’s been good for a long time and rising daily.

    Still no appearance from the lukewarmers who spend their lives trying to quantify the radiative greenhouse effect.

    This to me is the essence:

    “We show via a novel analysis of planetary climates in the solar system that the physical nature of the so-called GH effect is a Pressure-induced Thermal Enhancement (PTE), which is independent of the atmospheric chemical composition.”

    Brian H covers the geometry very well when he writes above:
    “Imagine the atmosphere in a bounded space or container, but not sitting in a gravity well, at a consistent temperature and pressure throughout. Now, dump it onto a planet’s surface. It will compress at the bottom and heat up there, and thin at the top and cool off there. No change in total heat content involved.”

    And the daily dose of solar radiation keeps it warm while the density of the atmosphere (and the relative presence of surface water, together with latitudinal differences in tropospheric ozone composition and cloud cover together with aspects associated with rotation and revolution about the sun) defines its temperature profile and thermal exchange characteristics.

  34. tchannon says:

    The infamy of Jericho makes this amusing if more tumble to it. Good one for the bibliography.

    Quite a few people follow or try to follow what you write, a bit of stretch does no harm. I think the grounded nature of people with many years of real world counts highly, tends to notice in attitudes and thinking.

    The British Bobbie checked out web site sticker, ah well.

  35. See my post at WUWT to enhance with other factors. e.g. by Essenhigh on thermo model of the atmosphere, Miskolczi on LBL radiation, Bejan on heat engine, Stockwell on phase lag. etc.

  36. p.g.sharrow says:

    As to the general vers local effects of surface pressure on the refrigeration system. The next time a hurricane or typhoon is featured on the weather news pay attention to the surface pressure. As the pressure drops the storm powers up as it pumps greater amounts of energy from the sea as water vapor up into the stratosphere to cool , dump the energy and fall as cooled rain. AS the sea cools, the storm powers down and pressure rises. and a large amount of excess ocean surface energy is pumped into space. pg

  37. iya says:

    The first law of thermodynamics and the ideal gas law lead to the dry adiabatic laps rate = g / Cp = 9.81 m/s^2 / 1.007 J/(g*K) = 9.74 °C/km. Notice that it does not depend on pressure in this form, only gravity and heat capacity of the atmosphere.
    But the laps rate is only the slope, we still need the intercept.
    That’s where greenhouse gases and total mass of the atmosphere come in, as they influence the height where incoming solar radiation is in equilibrium with outgoing thermal radiation. At this point, the atmosphere will have the planets grey body temperature.
    About 10% of all outgoing radiation is currently leaving from the earth surface directly to space.
    Increasing CO2 might close this window and thereby raise the effective radiation height, raising surface temperatures.
    Increasing water content lowers the natural lapse rate, potentially decreasing surface temperatures.

  38. Tenuc says:

    @iya

    The clincher for me that surface atmospheric temperature is unrelated to “GHGs” is that Nikolov & Zeller were able to accurately calculate the (known) av. surface temperature of other planets using the simple equations of thermodynamics…

    “Global surface temperature is independent of the down-welling LW flux known as greenhouse or back radiation, because both quantities derive from the same pool of atmospheric kinetic energy maintained by solar heating and air pressure. Variations in the downward LW flux (caused by an increase of tropospheric emissivity, for example) are completely counterbalanced (offset) by changes in the rate of surface convective cooling, for this is how the system conserves its internal energy.”

    Therefore CO2 has no effect on surface temperature. CAGW is kippered… :-)

  39. ferd berple says:

    lolwot says:
    December 28, 2011 at 11:18 pm
    Atmospheric pressure does not generate heat.

    You are correct that atmospheric pressure does not generate heat. The heat was already there in the energy contained in the mass of air.

    When you release compressed gas from a can, the gas cools. The reason it cools is not a result of the “work” done. It is a matter of energy divided by volume. The energy contained within the air, divided by the volume of the air, gives the temperature of the air.

    Thus, when air rises it cools, not because of the work done to lift the air, but because the air expands into a greater volume. The process is repeated in reverse as air descends. This gives rise to the lapse rate, which is a function of gravity not radiation. The lapse rate being a measure of the heating of the surface due to gravity.

    We do not see this in the oceans because water does not compress. Otherwise the bottom of the oceans would be hotter than the surface.

  40. ferd berple says:

    iya says:
    December 30, 2011 at 7:17 am
    That’s where greenhouse gases and total mass of the atmosphere come in, as they influence the height where incoming solar radiation is in equilibrium with outgoing thermal radiation. At this point, the atmosphere will have the planets grey body temperature.

    Which is not the surface of the planet, except on a planet without atmosphere. Since the equilibrium is at altitude, the lapse rate tells us that the surface must be warmer than the point of radiation equilibrium, and this is a function of gravity.

  41. tallbloke says:

    Posted on the new WUWT thread.

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2011/12/29/unified-climate-theory-may-confuse-cause-and-effect/#comment-847705

    Ah, the big guns of the lukewarmer camp are out in force today. :)

    More work and more clarification of terms is definitely needed, but I sense value in the work of Nikolov and Zeller.

    I wonder if we might find yet another mechanism amplifying solar variation lurking in this somewhere…

    [Quote Ira Glickstein]
    “Of course, one would expect planets and moons in our Solar system to have some similarities.”

    Indeed, despite the large variation in their atmospheric compositions.
    The observations of late C20th changes on Mars got the ‘we have to get rid of the medieval warm period’ treatment, but this shouldn’t be allowed to deter investigators. Neither should statements such as:

    [Quote Nikolov and Zeller]
    “Atmospheric Near-Surface Thermal Enhancement should not be confused with an actual energy, however, since it only defines the relative (fractional) increase of a planet’s surface temperature above that of a Standard Planetary Gray Body. Pressure by itself is not a source of energy! Instead, it enhances (amplifies) the energy supplied by an external source such as the Sun through density-dependent rates of molecular collision. This relative enhancement only manifests as an actual energy in the presence of external heating.”

    [Quote Willis Eschenbach]
    “Do people just swallow that content-free doubletalk in one big gulp, or is it easier to keep from gagging if you down it a word at a time?”

    Content free condemnation has little value. I don’t have a problem understanding what Nikolov and Zeller are saying in the passage quoted by Willis. They are simply explaining why it is that in a gravity well supplied with external power, the more highly compressed gas near the surface will be warmer than expected by a gray body calc which doesn’t take atmospheric pressure gradients into account. Simples.

  42. Q. Daniels says:

    I have said this before, and will say it again later, with more explanation and evidence.

    Gas molecules in a gravity well follow ballistic trajectories between collisions.

    Their thermal energy is turned into potential energy when rising, and vice-versa when descending.

    Gravity is the cause of both the temperature gradient and the pressure.

    In this regard, the terminology of the paper is not correct, but it at least gets the correct correlation.

  43. @GallopingCamel

    The reason the surface of Venus is so hot is because the temperature gradient from the molten core of the planet to the surface is different than that of the earth. The reason it is different is because the insulation coefficient doesn’t fall so abruptly the top of the crust on Venus like it does on the earth. Venus has an atmosphere 90 times denser than the earth. The sheer bulk of Venus’ atmosphere it makes it harder for heat of formation and radioactive decay in molten interior to escape to space once it reaches the top of the crust. Thus the temperature gradient from the molten iron core to the top of the crust is not as steep and continues a more gradual decrease as it rises through the atmosphere. Sunlight doesn’t penetrate close to the surface on Venus so that’s not even a consideration until above the globe-swallowing cloud deck. The reason Venus’ atmosphere at the same pressure-level as the Earth’s surface is approximately the same despite the difference in distance from the sun is coincidental. Venus gets about the twice the energy as the Earth at top of atmosphere but Venus’ albedo is twice the earth’s so it actually absorbs about the same amount of sunlight as the earth. Unlike the earth though none of that solar energy makes it through the cloud deck which is high, unbroken, and very dense. The “surface” Venus’ as far as solar energy is concerned is the cloud deck not the top of the crust. So just as you dig down into the crust on the earth it gets warmer as you go down if you dig down below the clouds on Venus it gets warmer as you go. This is purely because on both the Earth and Venus this is moving you closer to the source of the heat which is the molten core of the planet.

  44. Coldish says:

    gallopingcamel says:
    December 30, 2011 at 1:48 am
    Dave Springer,
    Pressure rules! Take a look at this discussion on “Science of Doom”:

    http://scienceofdoom.com/2010/06/12/venusian-mysteries/

    May I second Galloping Camel in recommending this discussion on Science of Doom concerning the cause(s) of the high surface temperature on Venus? The discussion is very long and takes up more than one post. In ‘Venusian mysteries 1′ Leonard Weinstein disagrees with the explanation offered by the ‘Doom’ blog host Steve Carson, arguing forcibly that, although some presence of radiative gases is needed to explain the Venusian temperature profile, Venus’s surface would still be almost as hot even if most of the CO2 was replaced by non-radiative gases. Leonard gets some support from, among others, Mike Blackadder, Galloping Camel and Mait. Science of Doom host Steve Carson seems to concede some ground to Leonard. Opposition to Leonard seems to be led by De Witt Payne, supported by Nick Stokes, who wants Leonard to quantify his theory, and by Chris Colose, who seems reluctant to engage with what Leonard is saying.

  45. tallbloke says:

    Leonard Weinstein says:
    December 29, 2011 at 6:14 am (Edit)

    The analysis is elegant and has many good points. Unfortunately, It is not quite fully correct. If an atmosphere had only gases with no long wave IR absorption, there would be no radiation absorption up and no back radiation at all. An atmosphere of say Argon (with no water present) is such an example. For that case, surface albedo and solar insolation would be mainly important. There would be an atmospheric effect, to transport some of the conducted and convected energy from lower latitudes to higher latitudes, where the atmosphere could conduct some energy to the local ground (there still would be heating from the surface to the gas and back), and the integrated area 4th power radiation out would be modified compared to no convection. However, if the gas did not transport much of the surface energy compared to the direct radiation out, the pressure and volume of the gas would not affect the average surface temperature. There has to be radiation absorbing gases (or aerosols) for a greenhouse effect. There would still be an adiabatic temperature profile as long as mixing from convection were strong enough, but the profile would be locked to match the surface value. With a greenhouse gas (or aerosols), the profile is locked to the temperature at the location of average outgoing radiation, and the adiabatic effect results in the atmosphere below this height warming. For Venus, the outgoing radiation comes from near the top of the atmosphere, so the adiabatic effect is dominate to determine surface temperature.

    In the case of all real planets, there is always present greenhouse gases (CO2, water vapor, methane, etc.) and solid or liquid aerosols (dust, water drops, etc.). However, the present writeup is correct that the pressure and volume of the atmosphere determine the surface temperature. It is how the volume is determined. It is changes in pressure and volume due to greenhouse gases that was not considered. Much of the mass change for Earth’s atmosphere (and thus pressure) is controlled by water vapor content. However, the increased CO2, while not changing mass much, does change the temperature slightly by absorbing outgoing radiation (as does water vapor), and the slightly higher temperature does change the volume slightly. The whole concept of back radiation is misplaced. It is not back radiation that causes the extra heating, it is the movement of the average location of the outgoing radiation due to absorption. Feedback is another issue, and I agree there seems to be negative feedback for CO2 due to change in albedo (due to dominance of water vapor). That is a separate issue.

  46. adolfogiurfa says:

    @Tallbloke: the present writeup is correct that the pressure and volume of the atmosphere determine the surface temperature
    If we were to define volume, space, dimension we should have to say that it should be defined as separation of charges, as there is no “space” unless it is established by a potential difference.

  47. Bryan says:

    Seems to be a bad year for the greenhouse theory enthusiasts.

    In this new peer reviewed paper the theory is once again found to be bogus.

    As an aside the paper mentions that the G&T comment paper by Halpern et al was so full of elementary mistakes that it was rejected.
    However for some reason the editorial board later published the paper including all the elementary mistakes .
    I can think of one person who is not a happy bunny.
    Gerhard Kramm and Ralph Dlugi

    http://www.scirp.org/journal/PaperInformation.aspx?paperID=9233

  48. tchannon says:

    A WUWT post came and went.

    pause

    Ira Glickstein puts up an WUWT article, doesn’t like and Willis chimes in the same. I could have told anyone that up front, predictable.

    Now Monckton does some awkward sitting on the wall, probably the right move given he hasn’t had time.

    None of this surprises me also noting certain people can’t read and wear mind blinkers.
    Here on Tallbloke’s we headlined Figure 10, now actually look at the X axis.

    As I understand it this is about overarching law, not about weather. Pressure hasn’t changed much over the past few hundred years, damn obvious so why are so many writing as though anyone said it has?

    Spotted the gotcha about CO2?

    There we are, leave it nice and ambiguous, see who is brave.

  49. erl happ says:

    Tim,
    As figure 10 postulates, the weather and 0.75°C surface temperature change over decades and centuries is well catered for in terms of change in atmospheric albedo responding to magnetic emanations from the sun. That’s the essence of my thesis. Svensmark has a different mechanism which may also be influential.

    A hypothetical: If there were no gas to absorb long wave radiation in the atmosphere then thermal exchange from the surface is then limited to conduction, evaporation and convection.

    Add a greenhouse gas, say CO2 absorbing at several discrete wave lengths, and in particular wave lengths longer than those absorbed by ozone. Then the 10% of acquired energy that leaves the Earth directly as long wave radiation heats the atmosphere driving convection a little faster. Will the surface warm? Not if the transport is efficient, and with relief from energy gain on a 24 hour time schedule it is efficient.

    Add ozone, that happens to absorb strongly at precisely the wave length emitted by much of the surface and the heating of the atmosphere becomes far more efficient, the long wave absorbers working synergistic-ally to raise atmospheric temperature. Emission by ozone is trapped by the far more populous CO2 molecules. Product= the stratosphere. Ozone 10ppm CO2 400ppm.

    There is no evidence that a change in the temperature of the air above the tropopause affects the temperature of the air below the tropopause. Below the tropopause, there is convection.

    Allow ozone to circulate in the upper troposphere. The product is a change in atmospheric albedo.

    A unified theory has to encompass change in the structure which includes atmospheric mass, an overlooked variable TOGETHER WITH the mechanisms that change climate on an inter-annual and inter-decadal basis. As you point out figure 10 encompasses both.

    Does a denser atmosphere raise surface atmospheric temperature ? Can a vacuum absorb energy by conduction? Does a vacuum have long wave absorbers? Is the Pope a Catholic?

    “Spotted the gotcha about CO2″? Please elucidate. Too ambiguous.

  50. J Martin says:

    Is that Gotcha – co2 causes cooling ?

  51. tallbloke says:

    “There is no evidence that a change in the temperature of the air above the tropopause affects the temperature of the air below the tropopause. Below the tropopause, there is convection.”

    Hi Erl,
    So why are sudden stratospheric warmings associated with cold air events at the surface? Displacement of arctic vortices pushing cold air to lower latitudes?

  52. RichardSCourtney says:

    Tallbloke:

    In the abstract to their paper Nikolov & Zeller wrongly claim;

    “We show via a novel analysis of planetary climates in the solar system that the physical nature of the so-called GH effect is a Pressure-induced Thermal Enhancement (PTE), which is independent of the atmospheric chemical composition.”

    Their analysis is NOT novel.
    It is a repeat of the Jelbring Hypothesis
    (ref. Jelbring H, ‘The Greenhouse Effect as a function of atmospheric Mass’, Energy & Environment,• Vol. 14, Nos. 2 & 3, (2003)).

    Jelbring’s 2003 paper can be read at

    http://ruby.fgcu.edu/courses/twimberley/EnviroPhilo/FunctionOfMass.pdf

    In my opinion, the fact that the paper by Nikolov & Zeller is a repeat of much earlier work deserves mention at the top of this thread.

    Happy New Year to you and yours.

    Richard

  53. tchannon says:

    Gotcha ambiguity: If gas composition does nothing during longer changes, how does it suddenly have an effect today?

    Try to clarify, different composition elsewhere and composition change over time on earth is described well using the given common formula with no special cases.

  54. tallbloke says:

    Thanks Richard, and the same to you and yours.

    So, Jelbring antecedes. Thanks for the reference, I wonder if we can trace an even earlier history.

  55. tchannon says:

    Not seen Hans for some time Richard but I have emailed his last known working address anyway. If he responds perhaps he will have something to say.

  56. tchannon says:

    erl,

    Your thoughts are very welcome. The ideas being put forward are acknowledged incomplete so since you apparently “get it” this is of especial interest.

  57. Ned Nikolov says:

    Hello Everyone

    As an author of the paper discussed on this blog, I have been watching in amazement the diverse views and perspectives expressed over the past 2 days, some of them quite predictable while other totally ‘out of the blue’. Overall, I find this exchange quite useful for it helps us understand the type of challenges people face when presented with this new paradigm. Your comments gave me several ideas on how to better address and explain key aspects of our theory.

    Instead of responding to individual comments, I thought it would be more beneficial for the whole group, if we (the authors) prepare a brief ‘reply’ article that clarifies the main issues/questions raised on this blog such as the magnitude of the GH effect, the meaning of the terms ‘extra energy’ and ‘pressure thermal effect’, the role of GH gases and their relationship to convection, the physical meaning of the ‘effective emission height’ in radiative transfer, and a few others.

    We will try to post our reply/clarification by the end of next week (Jan 6). In the mean time, I urge everyone seriously interested in the subject to read our paper in full at least twice while taking time to contemplate on different aspects of it. We know from experience that digesting a new paradigm takes time since it requires a SHIFT in perception (hence, the term ‘new paradigm’!). The way to reach that mental shift is by trying to think about the issue (in this case the GH effect) from a different (new) vantage point … It took us close to 12 months to fully realize all implications of Equations 7 and 8 with their amazing accuracy in predicting the mean temperature of planets over such a broad range of conditions. We then spent another 8 months to figure out how this relationship fits in with the climate forcings proposed by other studies before we were able to craft Figure 10.

    As far as we understand it now, all pieces of the new paradigm fit together very nicely, but this has to be conveyed to others in a way they can see it too. And that’s where our current challenge and commitment is … One should always remember, though, that this type of situation is not new to the history of science. Think about Copernicus and the 250 years it took for his idea of the Sun-centered solar system to become a mainstream science concept. The history repeats itself! We just hope that this time the paradigm shift will happen much quicker … -:)

  58. Brian H says:

    Ned;
    Yes, about 250 days would be nice …
    ;)

  59. erl happ says:

    Tallbloke You ask: So why are sudden stratospheric warmings associated with cold air events at the surface? Displacement of arctic vortices pushing cold air to lower latitudes?

    Correct. In the winter hemisphere surface pressure is enhanced at the pole. The night jet is invigorated bringing NOx into the upper stratosphere causing cooling within the vortex (stratospheric not surface) influenced air.

    Sudden stratospheric warmings as seen here: http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/stratosphere/temperature/02mb6525.gif and here: http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/stratosphere/temperature/02mb6590.gif are related to a temporary loss of polar pressure, failure of the night jet and burgeoning ozone. At the surface, the westerlies sweep well north. Just remember that in the absence of sunlight the photolysis of ozone cannot occur. So, in the absence of night jet activity ozone levels will quickly increase. We have a maximum of stratospheric ozone values in the winter hemisphere regardless of night jet activity. Take away the night jet activity and ozone over the winter pole skyrockets. Ozone absorbs long wave radiation from the Earth and exchanges that energy with other molecules instantaneously. Hence the sudden warming that affects both polar atmospheres in winter.

    Solar geomagnetic activity operates primarily to affect Antarctic pressure. Arctic pressure is affected as a sink for the departing atmosphere when it is lost over Antarctica. Geography. Antarctica is much colder and the coupled circulation relatively stable all year round.

    The return of atmospheric pressure to the Arctic can be a big rebound, reinvigorating the night jet and reversing the balance of pressure between high and mid latitudes. The Arctic Easterlies then swing well to the south temporarily inhabiting the domain of the warm moist south westerlies. This is where the ‘cold event‘ is experienced. At the actual centre of down-welling polar air over Greenland the surface is warmed by descending stratospheric air that is warmer than the actual surface at this much higher latitude.

    The northern hemisphere circulation is complicated by the existence of an alternate centre of high pressure to that at the pole and it is located over Eastern China.

    The relationship between the NAO and the Arctic Oscillation Index on the one hand and solar wind induced geomagnetic activity in the winter months has long been documented. It is a relationship that depends upon time of year and state of ionization of the atmosphere affecting plasma density in the interaction zone with neutrals.Whether the impact is felt primarily in the Pacific or the Atlantic is a matter for aforesaid atmospheric dynamics involving eastern Asia and the location of blocking highs associated with the strong descent of cold stratospheric air into the troposphere.

    Tim Ball has some excellent essays in the book ‘The Year without a Summer’ that looks at the effect of pressure relations on the source of the air, the temperature and precipitation over Canada. The eruption of Tambora put the cherry on the cake of a cooling trend that began soon after 1800.

    In the absence of geomagnetic activity atmosphere returns to both poles at the expense of the mid latitudes and the polar easterlies tend to prevail over the westerlies producing colder winters.

    It’s not simple. And this explanation contradicts planetary wave theory of the origin of stratospheric warmings. The latter has no legs. It is promulgated to complement AGW theory and deny the influence of natural .processes of climate change.

    Ned Nikolov, I thank you too. I look forward to your reply and clarification. Look in particular at the comments of Eschenback on the WUWT thread. Clarity is vital. As you can see, confusion reigns.

  60. p.g.sharrow says:

    erl; I believe you need to also point to the up,down flows caused by the influence of the north and south magnetic fields lines of force. This warpage of matter is also the reason for the oblate spheroid (egg) shape of the earth as well as the present strange layout of the continents toward the north pole. While this has little to do with climate/weather it does point to influence on air movements. pg

  61. erl happ says:

    p.g. sharrow
    Better point me to some reading.

  62. RichardSCourtney says:

    [moderator: This was noted by me before you had heard of Nikolov and Zeller, both of whom are professionals. To make this clear to others neither Richard nor Hans are unknown to me.

    The matter is noted and will be sorted out in due course, so please drop it, is inappropriate. -- Tim]

  63. RichardSCourtney says:

    Tallbloke:

    Several hours have passed since I provided my post at December 31, 2011 at 9:10 am but it is still “awaiting moderation”.

    I would be interested to know the reason for such moderation. I am not clear what I have previously posted which warrants my posts receiving such attention and I fail to see any reason for the specific post being delayed.

    I would be grateful for a clarification.

    Richard

    [ Your timezone is? We are English and do have things to do elsewhere. -- Tim]

  64. tallbloke says:

    Hi Richard,
    Sorry about that, I’m running the blog from my mobile phone today. I’ll try to fix it.

    UPDATE: It appears Tim C replaced your comment with his moderation note. I will be posting Hans Jelbring’s paper for discussion when I’m home tomorrow so please bear with us. I note that on WUWT you have accepted that Nilolov and Zeller were simply unaware of Jelbring’s paper. Please contact Hans if you can so he can join discussion.

    Thanks – Rog

  65. Stephen Wilde says:

    Very pleased so far that the Nikolov paper meshes very well with my stuff and a lot of the commenters seem to get the basic idea.

    However, doesn’t the general concept go back decades ?

    At some point someoe seems to have decided that atmospheric composition involving radiative processes makes a significant difference to the temperature set by thermodynamic and gravitational influences.

    I think one can deal with the resulting confusion by accepting BOTH scenarios but putting them in proper proportions.

    As I see it the GHG aspect is in the air only and the gravitational pressure aspect is in air and ocean but mostly in ocean.

    Gravity is blind to anything other than mass so the thermal characteristics of GHGs are an irrelevance to that portion of the story.

    Since downwelling IR from GHGs cannot get into the oceans it is limited in its effects to the air but the oceans control air temperaure.

    The only way the system could deal with the GHG portion of the effect is to alter the rate of energy flow from surface to space.

    In other words the GHGs fractionally alter the balance between sea surface and surface air temperatures by increasing the energy content of the air (mostly in the form of latent heat) and reducing the energy content of the oceans by converting incoming solar energy to longwave before it can get into the oceans.

    The system then has to correct that GHG induced imbalance between sea surface and surface air temperatures and must do so by shifting the surface air pressure distribution and the positions of the permanent climate zones.

    I think that tops and tails it very effectively.

    But the GHG effect remains miniscule compared to what sun and oceans achieve on multicentennial timescales.

  66. tallbloke says:

    Pretty good summary Stephen. I think we’re starting to get a clearer picture of energy budget and scale of effects here. My own work on ocean heat content and the match between that and solar activity taken as an integral departing from the equilibrium value meshes into this well too. And the long arguments with Willis Eschenbach regarding the inability of back radiation to heat the ocean bulk…

  67. RichardSCourtney says:

    Tim:

    In response to my polite request for information on why my posts were being given exceptional moderation you ask me:

    “[ Your timezone is? We are English and do have things to do elsewhere. -- Tim]”

    My “timezone” is Falmouth, Cornwall, UK.

    Richard

  68. tallbloke says:

    Richard, relax and enjoy new year. We’ll sort it all out tomorrow.

  69. Roger Andrews says:

    The oceans contain approximately a thousand times as much stored heat as the atmosphere, and because the ocean surface is generally warmer than the air above it net heat transfer is from the ocean to the atmosphere.

    Ocean-air heat transfer also has a major impact on air temperatures. All one has to do is look at El Niño events to demonstrate that.

    Yet I’m unable to find any mention of ocean-air heat transfer in the N&Z paper. I guess I don’t see how a Unified Theory of Climate can be considered “Unified” until it’s included.

    Oh yes, and Happy New Year, everyone.

  70. RichardSCourtney says:

    Roger Andrews:

    Your question was answered by my post that was deleted for reasons unknown to me.

    Richard

  71. tallbloke says:

    Patience Richard, we are now in contact with Hans.

  72. Konrad says:

    Given that the Talkshop was the first to host the Nikolov and Zeller discussion, I felt I should cross post the results of an empirical test I posted on the WUWT Ira Glickstein thread. I would note that Willis has raised some objections to the experiment on that same thread. However the experiment is simple enough that others should be able to iron out the kinks.

    From WUWT -

    Ok, we have had a perfect cloudless sunny day and I have just conducted my first very basic empirical experiment to check Nikolov and Zellers claims. Initial results indicate they may be correct.

    What was done -
    - 2 identical 1.25L PETG drink bottles recovered from the new years party detritus had one side spray painted black.
    - One bottle had a input port with tap attached though it’s lid
    - Both bottles had small holes drilled in their base and probe thermometers force fitted (0.1 degree resolution)
    - The lower ends of both bottles were shielded with foam and foil to prevent solar heating of the thermometer probes.
    - A fish tank pump capable of aprox 0.1 bar was attached to the input port of one bottle with 1m of pvc tubing coiled though a tub of ice water.
    - The bottle without the pump was squeezed slightly be fore the cap was attached firmly
    - The bottle with the pump was pumped up until rigid and the tap closed
    - Both bottles were left to equalise with indoor room temperature
    - Both bottles were placed in full sun on a sheet of EPS foam with their dark side down
    - Temperature rise in both bottles was observed
    - The experiment was repeated several times, swapping bottles, caps and thermometers to eliminate rig or instrument bias

    What was observed -
    - Both bottles internal temperature quickly rose around 25C above ambient air temperature reaching around 50C
    - The bottle with the higher internal pressure exceeded that of the low pressure bottle by around 1.5 degrees (typical readings 50.5C verse 49C)
    - When bottles were warmed then shielded from the sunlight with a sheet of EPS foam, the high pressure bottle appeared to initially cool quicker

    I was surprised to see such a small pressure differential created by a fish tank pump actually cause a measurable temperature differential. While the partial pressure of radiative greenhouse gasses would be raised in the higher pressure bottle, this could not account for the observed temperature difference between the bottles. This experiment, while crude, indicates that if the Earth had a higher pressure nitrogen and oxygen atmosphere, the surface air temperature would be higher for the same amount of solar input. Nikolov and Zeller may well be correct. I believe that it would now be appropriate for those disputing the Nikolov and Zeller claims to back their arguments with empirical evidence.

  73. tallbloke says:

    Konrad: Happy New Year.

    I love the rapid response empirical work, keep it up!

  74. tallbloke says:

    Ned Nikolov says on WUWT:
    December 31, 2011 at 9:21 pm

    Fellows,

    I will explain the gray-body temperature calculation and the Holder’s inequality in my official reply next week. Theoretical results from Eq. 2 actually match pretty well recent spatial retrievals of Moon’s surface temperature by NASA’s Diviner Lunar Orbiter. The GH effect is indeed MUCH larger than 33K. …No need to waste your energy on this now.

    Instead, think about how is it possible for Equation 8 in our paper to predict so accurately mean surface temperatures of planets over such a broad range of atmospheric and radiative environments by using ONLY 2 independent variables – average surface pressure and TOA solar irradiance?

  75. tallbloke says:

    Roger A, the two main variables in Nikolov and Zeller’s hypothesis are insolation at TOA and average surface pressure. Since we know from Nir Shaviv’s work on using the oceans as a calorimeter that albedo variation is proportional to solar variation, it seems reasonable to assume that ocean heat content is proportional to TOA insolation. Thus SST and hence air temperature is already implicit in the Unified Theory.

  76. Tenuc says:

    Reply to:- Konrad says: January 1, 2012 at 10:12 am

    Great experiment, Konrad, and hard to refute.

    More molecules in the higher pressure bottle leads to more collisions between the incoming photons and the gas, which in turns leads to a higher kinetic energy in the pressurised vessel – thus a higher temperature. Simples… 8-O

    BTW, you’ve just falsified CAGW – bluddy well done… 8-)

  77. Stephen Wilde says:

    Why do I still hold a conviction that the N&Z / Selbring descriptions of the greenhouse effect as being gravity / pressure dependent were well known 50 years ago ?

    Certainly it is the impression I had held since my schooldays until AGW introduced the issue of atmospheric composition as being relevant some 20 years ago.

    The widespread apparent ignorance over this critical issue also reminds me of many heated discussions with AGW proponents over the past few years which hinged upon their apparent ignorance as regards the thermal effects of the phase changes of water and especially the peculiar nature of latent heat and of evaporation as a powerful net cooling process.

    Taking just those two points together as lapses into ignorance due to past knowledge having been forgotten explains the entire AGW kerfuffle as a sad decline in scientific education over the past half century.

    We have too many people knowing a lot about very little and not enough people knowing a little about a lot. The advantage of the latter group is the ability to put varied scientific concepts into a wider picture which is exactly what we need to do in order to get a grip on climate variability and to avoid daft misapprehensions such as AGW.

  78. Tenuc says:

    Stephen Wilde says:
    January 1, 2012 at 2:30 pm
    “…Taking just those two points together as lapses into ignorance due to past knowledge having been forgotten explains the entire AGW kerfuffle as a sad decline in scientific education over the past half century.

    We have too many people knowing a lot about very little and not enough people knowing a little about a lot. The advantage of the latter group is the ability to put varied scientific concepts into a wider picture which is exactly what we need to do in order to get a grip on climate variability and to avoid daft misapprehensions such as AGW…

    I’m with you on this, Steven, well said.

    You only need to go onto Wiki, that bastion of the standard model for physics and other sciences, to see the load of pseudo-science and twaddle being taught in our educational establishments.

    The cancer of the Copenhagen spirit from back in the 1920′s has been at work changing physics from a real science of observation, measurement then theory into the cargo cult façade of magic particles and mythical entities, like dark matter, that has prevent real progress being made. An holistic approach, based on observation evidence is the only way forward.

  79. p.g.sharrow says:

    Konrad says:
    January 1, 2012 at 10:12 am
    Konrad; after examining your experiment several times, I see only one part that I question. The 1m of PVC tube in the ice bucket might not be enough to chill all the air flow from the pump. PVC is a poor conductor and small fish tank tube very little surface area for heat exchange. I would suggest another run with 10 times the tube in ice water. Otherwise a well thought out simple experiment. pg

  80. Roger Andrews says:

    TB:

    “the two main variables in Nikolov and Zeller’s hypothesis are insolation at TOA and average surface pressure. Since we know from Nir Shaviv’s work on using the oceans as a calorimeter that albedo variation is proportional to solar variation, it seems reasonable to assume that ocean heat content is proportional to TOA insolation. Thus SST and hence air temperature is already implicit in the Unified Theory.”

    I agree that SST is proportional to TOA insolation, and I’ve shown a few graphs in previous posts that I think demonstrate this. But I’m not sure that OHC is proportional to TOA insolation. In fact, if we accept your theory that solar energy is stored in the ocean during periods of strong solar activity and released back to the air during later periods of weak solar activity it won’t be.

    And I think I’ve also presented enough graphs to demonstrate that SST isn’t equal to SAT either, or at least not on the multidecadal scale.

    Which raises the question of exactly what do N&Z mean by “temperature”. They use the terms “temperature”, “surface temperature”, “atmospheric temperature”, “global temperature”, “Earth’s temperature” and “air temperature” apparently interchangeably and without ever specifying where these temperatures are measured. Are they talking about SAT, or SST, or TLT, or “combined land-ocean” temperatures? Are they aware that these series sometimes show quite different trends? Or is the totality of the Unified Theory such that it doesn’t make any difference?

    Just asking :-)

  81. colliemum says:

    @Stephen Wilde, January 1, 2012 at 2:30 pm:

    Thank you – I do agree fully with your post.
    There is one point to be added, and I’ll say this somewhat crudely: far too many scientists are stuck in their ivory towers and their metro-urban culture.
    They have lost the gift of observing the small changes which occur daily in the natural environment, of noticing them and wondering about them.
    Going back a long time to the years I studied for my degree (zoology, with botany: gotta know what some of the critters eat), I recall the many field trips, where we were taught how to look at what was there – and what was not.
    Throw in evolution of plants and animals, just as general overview of where what we see now came from, and the various scares propagated by the IPCC and The Team simply start to look ridiculous.

    I wonder what the naturalists of the 19th Century would have made of these over-specialised experts of the present, who are so enamoured of their computer programmes and computer models that they cannot even grasp how far away these models are from the actual reality we all live in.

  82. tallbloke says:

    Hi Roger A: If you look at the figure Tim C chose to highlight at the top of this post, which incidentally Nikolov confirmed afterwards to Tim was the right choice, and the most fundamentally important figure in the paper, you can see they have long timescales in mind. Yes, we see short term noise, multidecadal fluctuations and even centennial and multi-millenial cyclicities in various datasets. I think N&Z’s main point is that although all these internally and solar system dynamics induced fluctuations happen and will cause variations in surface pressure and temperature etc, the overarching background determinant of planetary surface temperature is the surface pressure and the solar variation as it manifests in TOA insolation values.

    So the fact that energy is bouncing around within the system on various timescales doesn’t matter too much to their theory. Within the broad constraints they define, we can further elucidate the celestial and terrestrial causes which cause the shorter term fluctuations. The key issue they are determining isn’t a formula for describing changes in the weather, it is that in terms of relative scale of effects, surface pressure and TOA insolation are the big kids on the block, and small variations in atmospheric composition are fairly unimportant in comparison.

    If my tentative idea that the ocean is capable of internal fluctuations on timescales of 100k years or more is correct, then glacial/interglacial shifts don’t have to be put down to solar variation or exotic amplifications of Milankovitch cycles. They are the expression of a bipolar oscillator with two main attractors. Such things can happily sit within the framework N&Z offer. So can an enhanced non-condensing GHG effect so far as air temperatures are concerned, but as you yourself point out, the heat capacity of the ocean is such that this would be a second order effect riding on the back of main causes.

    The question I would like answered by N&Z (or anyone else) is whether the fact that on geological timescales of hundreds of millions of years Earth spends more time with a surface temp up around 22C implies a denser heavier atmosphere during those epochs. And whether they would speculate that ice ages (not necessarily glacial/interglacial cycles although near surface density changes may amplify these) are the result of a loss of atmosphere brought about by long periods of weak geomagnetism allowing the solar wind to gradually erode atmospheric mass, or whether they believe the events are more apocalyptic, brought about for example by sudden outbursts of strong solar activity, or the sudden collapse of the strength of the self ordered geomagnetic field.

    If the latter, which do they see as more likely? Given the relative size of the Sun compared to Earth, and it’s strong gravitational field, my guess is large scale solar impact events are more likely the cause of atmospheric mass loss than Earth impacting events which we see little evidence for.

  83. Eilert says:

    I do agree with you Stephen.

    The basic atmospheric conditions and processes, like temperature profiles, lapse rates etc. were previously explained very well with thermodynamic and gas laws and basic physical principles.

    There was never a need for the ‘greenhouse hypothesis’ to explain this.

    This hypothesis actually complicates and/or contradicts what was already very well explained.
    Its math is pushed to match a claimed 33 degree warming, which in fact is much steeper if you take into account the correct geometry and use the correct integral math. It then again needs to be pushed to match actual observation with forcing and feedbacks.

    It is also a violation of not only the 2nd law of thermodynamics, but the first law, since it claims that back radiation, being heat energy in transit, which exists only because of the cooling of the surface, can add to the internal energy of that surface, thus raising the temperature. The cooling of the surface was only possible in the first instance, because the internal energy of the surface is higher, than the internal energy of the atmosphere and the atmosphere allowing transmission of the cooling surface radiation.

  84. Roger Andrews says:

    “Yes, we see short term noise, multidecadal fluctuations and even centennial and multi-millenial cyclicities in various datasets. I think N&Z’s main point is that although all these internally and solar system dynamics induced fluctuations happen and will cause variations in surface pressure and temperature etc, the overarching background determinant of planetary surface temperature is the surface pressure and the solar variation as it manifests in TOA insolation values.”

    TB, thanks for taking the time to clarify all this for me. However, the Figure does go down to timescales of ten years, and ocean oscillations that affect temperature, such as the PDO and AMO, are longer-period that that, so they aren’t short-term noise. They may even be responsible for the “quasi periodic fluctuations in cloud albedo” in the bottom box (they certainly have an impact on rainfall patterns). So while I’m about to retire defeated from this discussion I still think they should be mentioned somewhere.

  85. tallbloke says:

    Hi Roger A: Well, the mass of water vapour in the atmosphere at any one time is many billions of tons. If the total varies significantly, the consequent overall mass loss and gain would affect surface pressure an so temperature. That would in turn affect evaporation and precipitation. One has to assume there can be no runaway feedback effect, otherwise life couldn’t continue for long.

    Anyway, stick around, it’s about to get more interesting, as I now have Hans Jelbring’s permission to post his 2003 paper.

  86. RichardSCourtney says:

    tallbloke:

    You say;
    “Anyway, stick around, it’s about to get more interesting, as I now have Hans Jelbring’s permission to post his 2003 paper.”

    OK but so what? Above at December 31, 2011 at 1:01 am I posted a link to it at

    http://ruby.fgcu.edu/courses/twimberley/EnviroPhilo/FunctionOfMass.pdf

    Richard

    PS I still would appreciate an explanation of my treatment by the moderator of this thread.

  87. Stephen Wilde says:

    “The basic atmospheric conditions and processes, like temperature profiles, lapse rates etc. were previously explained very well with thermodynamic and gas laws and basic physical principles.
    There was never a need for the ‘greenhouse hypothesis’ to explain this.”

    That WAS the greenhouse theory 50 years ago. It was ALL thermodynamics.

    It was subsequently redefined by reference solely or primarily to radiative processes.

    I’d love to know how and when that came about and how it gained dominance.

  88. erl happ says:

    This comment from Tim Ball on the WUWT post may be of interest.

    Tim Ball says:
    December 29, 2011 at 2:23 pm

    I commended Nikolov and Zeller when I first read their paper. I also commend Anthony for posting it for wider dissemination and discussion.

    I don’t want to detract from these efforts, however, I did draw Nikolov’s attention to the work of Hans Jelbring:

    http://ruby.fgcu.edu/courses/twimberley/EnviroPhilo/FunctionOfMass.pdf

    I don’t know Hans’ situation as he disappeared off the blogs a little while ago. Nikilov was going to contact him.

    I also suggest people look at Jelbring’s 1998 doctoral thesis at Stockholm University titled “Wind Controlled Climate”. Wind is the most overlooked variable in climate studies yet critical in rates of evaporation, transpiration and heat transfer vertically (convection) and horizontally (advection). Consider the change in global dynamics created by a wind speed increase or decrease of 1 kph.

  89. tallbloke says:

    I wonder how many clicked the link Richard. I haven’t seen any further comments regarding it in this thread. I’m mostly doing this to stimulate interest and to give Hans the opportunity of having his paper discussed afresh these years later. Also to set the history of science record straight in respect to claims of novelty by Nikolov and Zeller and your dispute regarding them . You could be a little more gracious about that. “So what” is not a phrase befitting your experience and seniority in the climate debate IMO.

    You got an explanation for the removal of your comment from Tim in the very comment that was clipped to make way for it. Although I didn’t see your comment I trust my co-moderators judgement and that is the end of the matter. Further reference to it will be removed.

  90. RichardSCourtney says:

    tallbloke:

    OK. That is your ruling which you are perfectly and solely entitled to make on your blog.

    But that decision clearly proves my attempts to contribute here are not valued so I shall not bother to make any further attempt. I apologise for any disruption that you feel my attempts have provided.

    Richard

  91. tallbloke says:

    Erl, nice timing!

    Stephen, sounds like a job for a Historian of science more dedicated to dusty stack collections than I. ;)

    Richard: Sorry you feel that way about it. If the passage of time heals the rift, feel free to call again. In the meantime, your acute logic and encyclopedic knowledge of the climate debate will be missed.

  92. Roger Andrews says:

    Stephen:

    “I’d love to know how and when (the greenhouse theory) came about and how it gained dominance.

    Here’s one version:

    http://www.aip.org/history/climate/Revelle.htm

  93. Stephen Wilde says:

    “Consider the change in global dynamics created by a wind speed increase or decrease of 1 kph.”

    Yes, Erl, absolutely.

    And if one were to shift the entire surface air pressure distribution with all the climate zones latitudinally ?

    That becomes a Unifying Theory doesn’t it ?

    “to set the history of science record straight in respect to claims of novelty by Nikolov and Zeller ”

    Rog, I think the basic concept of the greenhouse effect being a thermodynamic phenomenon is decades old at least.

    The claim that convection etc. cancels out the effects of GHGs has been pronounced by me for the past 4 years in multiple articles and innumerable blog posts.

    Over that time I have put lengthy articles in the public domain explaining how and why the points now made by N & Z are valid and how they mesh with the top down solar effects on climate and the bottom up oceanic effects on climate.

    Also I have explained how the redistribution of surface pressure always acts as a negative system response to minimise or prevent any divergence between sea surface and surface air temperatures.

    It will be for others to judge as to issues of novelty in light of the evidence that is already out there.

    As far as I know I have the only climate description that fits with the recent confirmation that the sign of the ozone response to solar variation is opposite to that expected above 45km. I have also explained at length why that is critically important for the surface air pressure distribution and the positions of all the permanent climate zones.

    Interesting times :)

  94. tallbloke says:

    Stephen,

    Nikolov and Zeller’s claim of Novelty is this:

    “We show via a novel analysis of planetary climates in the solar system that the physical
    nature of the so-called Greenhouse Effect is in fact a Pressure-induced Thermal Enhancement”

    It’s clear Hans did calculations, but it appears he did not publish the results of them, or describe how they were done, preferring instead to offer a qualitative description which could be understood by all. The broad conclusions are similar, however Nikolov and Zeller do not claim that their broad conclusions are novel.

    Anyway, I don’t want to pre-empt the forthcoming discussion here before posting Hans Jelbring’s 2003 paper so let’s leave it for now.

  95. Stephen Wilde says:

    I agree.

    If they are limiting the novelty claim to that then it really isn’t my business whether Hans’s work negates their claim or whether decades old science does so (or neither).

    I’m only concerned if they claim novelty about things that I’ve already covered in creating my own set of articles but even then it is for others to judge.

  96. erl happ says:

    Tallbloke,
    If you or Tim is in touch with Hans Jelbring would it be possible to ask how one obtains a copy of his thesis ‘Wind Controlled Climate’. Perhaps two copies would be in order, one for Stephen and one for me. I’ll pay.

    Here are a couple of related articles that came up in my search:

    http://realplanet.eu/atmoseffect.htm

    http://www.tech-know.eu/NISubmission/pdf/Politics_and_the_Greenhouse_Effect.pdf

    http://www.friendsofscience.org/assets/documents/Gilbert-Thermodyn%20surf%20temp%20&%20water%20vapour.pdf

    William C. Gilbert seems to know what he is talking about.

    Stephen,
    I highly recommend Tim Ball’s articles in ‘The Year without a Summer’. You will enjoy them.

  97. tallbloke says:

    Erl,
    I’ll ask Hans when he emails me tomorrow.

    Night all.

  98. Stephen Wilde says:

    Thanks Erl.

    Just had a quick look at Hans’s simplified narrative and he said this:

    “it is solely a function of the magnitude of the gravitational field and the heat capacity of the
    atmospheric gas, and nothing else. And this relationship aptly describes the bulk of the 33ºC
    so-called “Greenhouse Effect” that is the bread and butter of the Climate Science Community.”

    I wonder whether his use of the term ‘heat capacity’ leaves it open to argue that composition is relevant ?

    N & Z seem to be suggesting that it is the mass of the gas that is relevant rather than the heat capacity and I would tend to concur on the basis that gravity only recognises mass and not heat capacity.

  99. tallbloke says:

    *sigh*

    Ok, I’ll publish Hans paper now, though I wanted to await his email as a courtesy. Please move discussion of it to the new thread and leave this one for further info on Nikolov and Zeller. Thanks.

  100. [...] Comments tallbloke on Unified Theory of Climate, Nik…Stephen Wilde on Unified Theory of Climate, Nik…tallbloke on Unified Theory of Climate, [...]

  101. Stephen Wilde says:

    It’s Ok, I see that N & Z have covered the question of any ADDITIONAL heat due to COMPOSITION by saying that it gets disposed of by extra convection, conduction etc which is my position on the matter too.

  102. tallbloke says:

    Posted on WUWT:

    Joel Shore says:
    January 2, 2012 at 6:14 pm

    Stephen: This makes no sense. How is gravity supplying 150 W/m^2 of power? Gravity cannot supply energy unless the gravitational potential energy of the Earth and its atmosphere is decreasing.

    Stephen, allow me to try again.

    Joel,

    Keep re-reading this until you grasp it:

    “Pressure by itself is not a source of energy! Instead, it enhances (amplifies) the energy supplied by an external source such as the Sun through density-dependent rates of molecular collision. This relative enhancement only manifests as an actual energy in the presence of external heating. Thus, Earth and Titan have similar NTE values, yet their absolute surface temperatures are very different due to vastly dissimilar solar insolation. While pressure (P) controls the magnitude of the enhancement factor, solar heating determines the average atmospheric volume (V), and the product P×V defines the total kinetic energy and temperature of the atmosphere. Therefore, for particular solar insolation, the NTE factor gives rise to extra kinetic energy in the lower atmosphere beyond the [expected] amount supplied by the Sun. This additional energy is responsible for keeping the Earth surface warmer than it would be in the absence of atmosphere, and is the source for the observed 44% extra down-welling LW flux in the lower troposphere”

    [My italics and I've taken out the given quantity so we can concentrate on the concept without getting sidetracked]

    Pressure does not have to supply energy ex nihilo to make this work: it is merely responsible for the way it is distributed. Perhaps you’d find it easier to understand if the Authors had used the word ‘more’ instead of ‘extra’, and added the redundant (but in your case seemingly necessary) statement: and less than expected in the upper atmosphere.

    Energy is conserved, as it must be. The authors are not stupid people, much as you would like to paint them to be so.

    Please treat people with respect.

  103. Brian H says:

    TB, if JS can’t assume and assert that everyone else is stupider than himself, his entire worldview comes crashing down. You ask the impossible.

  104. [...] on NYT article on climategate: En…hro001 on NYT article on climategate: En…Brian H on Unified Theory of Climate, Nik…colliemum on Robert Brown: Beer, Boiling an…Brian H on 2011 in reviewtallbloke on Robert [...]

  105. tallbloke says:

    Alan D McIntire says:
    January 2, 2012 at 8:41 am

    Used: T = P/ ρ • M/R

    Venus Earth Mars
    ——– ——– ——–
    P – pressure 9220000 101325 605 N/m2 (Pa)
    ρ – density 65 1.217 0.015 kg/m3
    M – molar mass 0.0434 0.02897 0.04334 kg/mol
    R – gas constant 8.31451 8.31451 8.31451 J/K/mol
    ——– ——– ——–
    T – temperature 740.40 290.09 210.24 K

    A couple of years ago I read a article stating that Earth had a rouglhy 10% denser atmosphere during the Permian Period than it does now , which helped make it warmer than it is now. From that article I thought I could apply the PV =nrT law to get the additional greenhouse effect from an Earth with a denser atmosphere, and Venus’s; surface temperature,. I quickly found a snag in my reasoning,

    M, and R are determined constants, P is an input for an atmospher of a given density, but RHO is not determined by initial conditions,
    If P is 10% larger and Rho is ALSO 10% larger, you get the same temperature as before.
    Venus has a P of roughly 90. What determines Rho? If Rho was 130, Venus would have
    a temperature of 370 K.

    I suspect that Nikolov is messing around with an identity. .I don’t think his formula tells us how to calculate rho with a given atmospheric composition and density, and a given solar flux.

    What would the surface temperature of a planet with a venus type atmosphere at 1/10 the Venus pressure, on a planet 10% more massive than earth, , at the distance of Mars, with a star having 90% the flux of our sun be? Once you have rho you can compute the other figures, and they will match the above calculations- but rho will depend on the stellar flux reaching the surface and on the geenhouse effect of the given atmpsphere.

    Ned Nikolov says:
    January 2, 2012 at 9:44 am

    Reply to Alan D McIntire’s comment from January 2, 2012 at 8:41 am

    Alan,

    You address an issue which we explain at length in our full paper, but it is not discussed in details in our poster. I will elaborate on this in my official reply later this week. Basically, the Gas Law equation ρT = P M / R (Eq. 6 in our poster) cannot be solved for T alone, because we have one equation with two unknown (T and ρ). Solving this requires a SECOND equation, which is provided by the planetary regression curve relating T to P in our Eq. (7) and more specifically by Eq. (8). Combining Equations (6) and (8) with a third equation that defines surface pressure as a function of atmospheric mass (Ma), planet surface area (A), and gravity (g), i.e. P = g Ma / A, results in a 3-equation model with the following chain of causality:

    1) Pressure (P) is a function of total air mass, planet surface area, and average gravity;
    2) Surface air temperature (T) is a function of TOA solar irradiance and average atmospheric surface pressure (Eq. 8);
    3) Near-surface air density (ρ) depends on the mean temperature and atmospheric pressure (Eq. 6);

    This implies that air density does NOT control surface temperature, atmospheric pressure does! Instead, density is a function of temperature, which is maintained by pressure and solar heating. This is a critical difference from the concept of Hans Jelbring! That is because the volume (density) of the atmosphere increases or decreases depending on the energy content of the system, while surface pressure is constant. On a planetary scale, the average thermodynamic process at the surface is ISOBARIC in nature (see Section 3.1 in our poster). Hence, temperature is INDEPENDENT of atmospheric composition, while air density is affected by that composition through the molecular mass of air (M)… It all fits together perfectly! Wouldn’t you agree? … :-)

  106. tallbloke says:

    Tenuc Said:

    Nikolov says:
    “… It all fits together perfectly! Wouldn’t you agree? … :-)”

    Love it, Rog, when something really simple, but profound, is explained as well as this… 8-)

    Indeedy!

  107. Joe Born says:

    To this layman, the general conclusion that the effects of pressure and insolation essentially bury greenhouse-gas effects is quite plausible. But there are two significant reasons why I find Nikolov et al.’s argument for that proposition less than compelling.

    The first is that “What mechanism enables our atmosphere to boost the planet surface temperature some 86% above that of a SPGB?” begs the question of whether the atmosphere is indeed responsible for all or even most of that “boost,” i.e., for most of that difference between observed surface temperature and the temperature T_gb computed for that fictional Standard Planetary Gray Body (“SPGB”). Is there any reason to believe that the earth’s heat capacity and conductivity, together with its rate of rotation, are not responsible for much of that difference? We can be forgiven in light of lunar-temperature measurements for concluding that the answer is no. So it is difficult to discern the relevance of T_gb, and I might therefore have had more confidence in their theory if the authors had not based their remaining equations on that quantity.

    Secondly, although the the Fig. 5 graph displays an admirable fit of theory to observation, it is difficult to avert one’s eyes from the fact that the authors needed seven parameters to match seven data points. Specifically, Equation 8 explicitly shows three parameters, namely, the coefficient, the additive term, and the exponent, and by including N_TE(P_s), it implicitly adopts four more, namely, Equation 7′s two coefficients and two exponents. So it is not startling that the authors succeeded in making their equation wiggle its trunk.

    Perhaps the authors will take time to disabuse me of any misconceptions the foregoing discussion betrays.

  108. Tenuc says:

    “Hence, temperature is INDEPENDENT of atmospheric composition, while air density is affected by that composition through the molecular mass of air (M)… It all fits together perfectly! Wouldn’t you agree?”

    Irrefutable and… 8-)

  109. Doug proctor says:

    My head is spinning.

    What we believe about either theory is based on a chain or train of logic. What is the link or car that separates the two?

    The only thing that is settled and certain, it would appear, is that nothing is settled and certain. I’m worried that this summer my apples will not fall from my tree, but fly up into the sky.

  110. Eilert says:

    Thanks Erl 1 Jan 2012 11pm

    Your third link http://www.friendsofscience.org/assets/documents/Gilbert-Thermodyn%20surf%20temp%20&%20water%20vapour.pdf leads to:
    THE THERMODYNAMIC RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN SURFACE TEMPERATURE AND WATER VAPOR CONCENTRATION IN THE TROPOSPHERE by William C. Gilbert

    This is a an excelent, very readable explanation of the lapse rate and the interplay between the energies governing the Humidity, Temperature, Pressure and Volume in the gravity field of Earth, changing the actual observed lapse rate, all without any greenhouse gases.

  111. Ned Nikolov says:

    Response to Joe Born (January 3, 2012 at 4:22 pm):

    Joe,

    Two quick comments regarding your post above:

    1) The mapping of the Moon surface temperature performed by NASA’s Diviner Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter in 2009 and 2010 show that the lunar surface is on average MUCH colder than the 255K estimate derived from a simple application of the S-B equation, and quite close to the 154.3K estimate in our paper based on a correct spherical integration of the S-B equation. This means that Mercury’s mean temperature of 440K reported by NASA and calculated from the S-B law is also severely overestimated. When one calculates the GH effect on Earth using NASA’s observed moon temperatures, one arrives at a value well in excess of 100K! … More details in may formal reply later this week.

    2) Our regression Eq. (7) has only 4 fitted parameters (the coefficients to pressure P), not 7 as you claim! One cannot precisely fit a 4-parameter curve to 8 points (planets) and justifiably assume that it’s a meaningless coincidence.

    It’s my overall impression that a lot of folks on this and other blogs apparently do not pay attention to details, nor do they seem to be able to comprehend relatively simple concepts. This combined with poor math skills and inadequate knowledge of physical processes creates a hopeless discussion environment. Of course, there are a few people, who seem to be quite intelligent and well informed, but they are only a few!

  112. tallbloke says:

    Ned: thanks for rejoining discussion at this busy time. Did you get my email?

  113. Joe Born says:

    Thank you for taking the time to provide a response, which upon reflection I am largely inclined to accept.

    Having checked what I could find about lunar temperature on line, it does indeed appear plausible that the moon’s noon equator temperature reaches a value that corresponds to the sun’s insolation. It seems less likely that its night-time temperature falls low enough to meet the value you attribute to it in your Equation 2, but without having thought it through completely I’m inclined to accept that the resultant difference in the effective mean is not great.

    With regard to the number of parameters, I was indeed in error, because I read that part too quickly; since Equation 8 is displayed just above Fig. 5, I had thought that was the equation Fig. 5 was to show, and the parameter count would still have been wrong if we then accept N_TE as essentially a measurement because of its close match to observation.

    But here’s a little constructive criticism: you might profit from recognizing that failures such as mine to “pay attention to details” result to a great extent from shortcomings in your exposition. While some of us are not strong as others in the relevant math and physics, my take is that it required no weaknesses in either area to be turned off by your paper. Moreover, even many laymen like myself would have gotten it quickly if your writing had not been so obscure.

    For example: “Observations show that the lower troposphere emits 44% more radiation toward the surface than the total solar flux absorbed by the entire Earth-Atmosphere System (Pavlakis et al. 2003) (Fig. 4). Radiative transfer alone cannot explain this effect (e.g. Figs. 2 & 3) given the negligible heat storage capacity of air.” Can you appreciate that people might have some difficulty thus comparing power (flux) with energy (that the atmosphere contains because of its heat capacity).

    Another example: “Pressure by itself is not a source of energy! Instead, it enhances (amplifies) the energy supplied by an external source such as the Sun through density-dependent rates of molecular collision. This relative enhancement only manifests as an actual energy in the presence of external heating.” Amplify energy? What does that mean? You may have a perfectly valid concept in your head, but please entertain the possibility that even very smart people are going to have trouble understanding something presented so impressionistically.

    Also, when in Equation 2 you multiply c_v by mu even though background radiation is in fact isotropic, you make people wonder whether reading further is worth it. (Yes, I know that you probably did it so you could integrate analytically and that you gave it a value higher than what would be correct if it were treated as isotropic, but why impose upon your readers the burden of figuring this out?)

    Now, I’ll admit that part of the difficulty in my case did indeed start with weakness in math; I have yet to explain to myself Equation 2′s integration with respect to mu, so to verify your result I had to write my own equation and evaluate its definite integral numerically. But the purpose of a paper is to communicate your theory, not to give your readers a calculus problem, so why not present it more accessibly?

    Physics also gave me difficulty. Why in the second Equation 3 are the surface- and atmospheric-temperature terms both multiplied by the same emissivity–while the surface term in the first equation has no emissivity factor? Those issues may or may not be important; I don’t know. But your readership declines exponentially with the number of such difficulties. Sure, there may be folks who already know the answer, but why not explain it and retain the readers who don’t?

    In short, your purpose is to make people understand your concept, not to test how perceptive they are. You will save time in the long run if you write with that in mind.

  114. Ned Nikolov says:

    Joe,

    Your points are well taken. Thank you.

    I agree that our description is too concise, but that’s because this was a poster presented at an International conference with limited space available. That’s of course our ‘excuse’, which does not help the reader … The actual paper is on 80+ pages (single space). We are still working on a few sections related to the climate implications of this new paradigm, and that’s the reason we are not releasing it to the public yet. However, the main aspect of the theory explaining the GH effect as a pressure phenomenon is complete, and it was the message that we wanted to relay with this poster paper… I’m trying to do a much better job of describing the ideas in the ‘reply’ article.

    We have been intensively working on this for 2 years now. All data and calculations have been checked and re-checked multiple times, and all theoretical concepts have been thoroughly discussed and analyzed among ourselves. What we are releasing now is the product of a quite careful study and thought! Therefore, any ‘problems’ or ‘discrepancies’ that a 10-minute scan of the paper may seem to reveal is very likely to be the result of misunderstanding on part of the reader due to insufficient information or lack of expertise rather than an omission on our part … Of course, we are taking full responsibility for the incomplete information.

    One thing that made an impression on me, however, is the lack of sound understanding of the gas law among bloggers. I thought it was a well known concept (for at least 80 years now) that an isobaric process (operating under constant pressure such at at a planet surface) obeys the simple relationship (shown in our Eq. 6):

    ρT = const. = P M / R

    This means that the product of temperature (T) and air density (ρ) is an invariant quantity (with respect to energy input) that depends on pressure (P). Therefore, increasing P in an isobaric process will cause an increase in both temperature and air density for the same energy input. What is unknown from this equation is how T will exactly change with P, i.e. in a linear or non-linear fashion, which is why we searched for and derived Eq. 7. But the concept that an equilibrium change in P must lead to an equilibrium change in T should have poised no difficulty to a physicists mind. Yet, what I’m finding (even among eminent scientists) is this unphysical belief that a change in pressure would only cause a transient response in T, which will eventually return to its per-disturbed value … How could have this most fundamental premise of classical thermodynamic been forgotten?!

  115. Stephen Wilde says:

    ANY system containing both radiative and non radiative processes is ALWAYS dominated by the non radiative processes such that the radiative processes only ever provide a mopping up activity for work that the non radiative processes fail to perform.

    Let’s apply that principle to the Earth system.

    Energy in equals energy out.

    Non radiative processes namely conduction, convection and the water cycle do their best to achieve equality of energy in and energy out by shifting energy through the system as fast as it comes in so that ultimately it can be radiated out.

    Only if the non radiative processes fail to do their job will purely radiative processes become relevant by raising the system temperature.

    Heat builds up as a result of energy accumulation within the system which increases until the job is done with energy coming in equal to energy radiated out.

    The interesting implication of that is that the gases around the Earth will only ever get hot enough to deal with the failure of non radiative processes to deal with any disequilibrium.

    Thus the composition or thermal characteristics of the gases is irrelevant. However high the so called radiative forcing capability of any single molecule might be it will never carry more energy than is required to allow the Earth system to achieve thermal equilibrium.

    Such molecules might try to achieve more but because NO additional energy is needed they will fail due to the sharing of the energy that IS available amongst ALL the molecules in the atmosphere whether GHGs or not. That sharing results from collisional activity which is density dependent hence the relationship with pressure noted by N & Z.

    So the feared radiative forcing capability of GHGs is never used. They simply perform at reduced capacity like a fast car keeping to the speed limit on a motorway.

    And that is why N & Z are right and their equations are correct.

  116. Stephen Wilde says:

    “How could have this most fundamental premise of classical thermodynamic been forgotten?!”

    I’ve had just the same problem explaining the power of the evaporative process to AGW proponents. They just cannot get their minds around the implications of it being a NET cooling process.

    The last 50 years of scientific education in the West has been a tragedy.

    We have a vast number knowing a lot about very little and hardly anyone knowing a little about a lot.

    It is the latter group who are by far the more useful in absorbing ideas, creating and applying concepts and progressing science in general.

    Very sad.

  117. p.g.sharrow says:

    Not sad Stephen just normal. To be accepted as trained in a field, you must know all the answers that are consensus accepted in that field. Even if they are not right and if you later step outside that constraint you may well be driven out of your chosen field.
    It takes a long time to learn something about everything. And a nonspecialist has no standing in any field, but it is a lot more interesting life. pg

  118. Ned Nikolov says:

    Stephen,

    Unfortunately you are correct about the education in climate science over the past 50 years. I’d say this problem has metastasized noticeably over the past 20 years… I’ve had a chance to talk with young undergraduate students on several occasions, and all they remember from their atmospheric physics class is the radiative properties of gases. The question is how that happened? And the answer seems to be (as always) – “follow the money” … :-)

    You are absolutely right about evaporation. It’s a powerful cooling mechanism to the surface, and one that could literally be INFINITELY more efficient than radiative cooling. That’s because radiative transfer of heat requires a gradient between 4th-powers of temperature, while evaporation can operate under ZERO or even negative temperature gradients as long as there is a gradient in water vapor concentrations. This is really basic physics, and anyone who has studied the solution to the energy budget equation should know this. Heat is like electricity – it always follows the path of least resistance, and convective cooling (especially evaporation) provides such path …

  119. tallbloke says:

    Ned: thanks for the reply to the email. I think it might be worth considering making that key passage clearer as I outlined to give the ‘willful misinterpreters’ less wiggle room to propagate misconceptions about energy conservation. These memes can be hard to shake off once they take hold, and can delay the dawn of understanding.

    I see from your foregoing discussion here that Joe Born had difficulty with the same passage, so I hope the reformulation I offered may be of utility in overcoming potential misunderstanding.

    Here is the reformulation I offered Joel Shore on WUwT:

    http://tallbloke.wordpress.com/2011/12/28/unified-theory-of-climate-nikolov-and-zeller/#comment-12790

  120. erl happ says:

    Ned,
    “But the concept that an equilibrium change in P must lead to an equilibrium change in T should have poised no difficulty to a physicists mind.”

    Equally, should I wish to reduce heat transfer via a medium I would reduce the density (and pressure) of the medium, approaching as near as possible to a vacuum. Hence the vacuum flask.

    I am not a physicist, just a farmer with a practical bent of mind. It’s no trouble for me to accept these propositions. It’s no trouble to accept that the surface of the planet will have hot and cool spots and that the speed of heat transfer sets the limit on the temperature that the warm spots can reach. Gas is an unstable medium. The more extreme the spatial variation the faster the wind blows. The faster the wind blows the faster does water evaporate. And the heat is applied only in daylight hours. It’s a very short cycle. And a very thin troposphere. And all the energy is displaced straight up.

    End of the day its the man in the street who votes who will have to be convinced. In that connection consider this:

    Top merchant Berry Bros & Rudd says environmentally-friendly wines are proving less popular with consumers – biodynamic wine sales fell 54% in 2011 and organic wine sales dropped 63% on 2010. But Berry’s saw strong sales from Champagne – up 17% by volume and 41% by value on 2010; while Prosecco sales soared by 28% in terms of volume and by 37% in value on 2010, reports Harpers Wine & Spirit.

    What needs to be explained is what makes the clouds come and go because it is atmospheric albedo that plainly accounts for change in surface temperature. That’s what I want to hear about. The turnover of heat in the oceans depends upon the currents driven by the winds. So, it is the atmosphere responding to the sun that is the primary driver.

    Your ideas are truly liberating. Restores my faith in science.

    Seems to me that too much sophistication can dazzle the mind and lead us astray.

  121. colliemum says:

    @ Ned Nikolov:

    I agree with Erl Happ: consider, for your reply, that you are addressing lay people, i.e. people who may have a huge amount of knowledge about the natural world but are not physicists.
    So consider yourselves as being teachers, in a way, and assume that your readers need everything explained.
    Condensing an 80-page paper on the one hand and extending a poster on the other is a huge task. I don’t envy you.
    But I’m sure we’re all looking forward to your reply!

  122. tallbloke says:

    Well said Colliemum.

    From a history of science perspective it is worth noting that the great paradigm shift into Einsteinian relativity was accompanied by two types of publication. One was Einstein’s Journal published papers. Still not many people in the world understand those. The other was his popular laymans book on relativity. This was a coup in terms of successful science communication and the ‘winning over’ of the public and the science institutions and their funding bodies.

    Scientific revolutions are driven as much by sentiment and ‘feel’ as by technical argument. For the UTC to succeed in it’s aim of achieving a paradigm shift in climate science, the popular layman’s version needs to be accessible, illustrative and graspable by the ordinarily educated mind. It also needs to be faithful to the science.

    As a qualified historian and philosopher of science, with some experience in mass communication and the conveying of specialist knowledge to non-specialist audiences, I’d like to offer my assistance to Dr Ned Nikolov and Dr Zeller in drafting a ‘laymans UTC’.

  123. colliemum says:

    @ tallbloke (Jan 4th, 8.33 am):

    Great idea of yours, to draft a ‘Layman’s UTC’.

    You’ll be needing a non-physicist guinea pig, to point out where more explanations are needed in the text.
    I’m happy to offer my help as guinea pig, with experience in copy-editing …

  124. tallbloke says:

    Colliemum, excellent! Offer accepted. Let’s await Ned’s response to the reception of the conference poster and see if he wants to take us up on our offer.

    I would want to set the historical context by discussing the controversy between Maxwell, and Boltzmann and Maxwell’s teacher Loschmidt which has been brought to my attention this morning by new talkshop contributor William Gilbert over on the Jelbring thread.

    I think this would form a good introduction and set the scene for explaining why the important concepts eludidated by the UTC haven’t been realised until now.

  125. Stephen Wilde says:

    Ned, thanks for your response. There is much that we agree on.

    I am now curious to see how you link your temperature/pressure findings to climate phenomena in general.

    It will be interesting to see whether you propose mechanisms significantly different from those proposed by me over recent years.

  126. tallbloke says:

    Stephen, if as you claim, the UTC equations are consistent with your qualitative climate system description, then surely we wouldn’t be surprised if we find that the climate mechanisms N&Z have deduced from their theory turn out to be broadly similar!

    I would be glad to see that great minds (independently) think alike, as it lends confirmational weight to both you and them. That you have got there through logic and observation while they have got there through the application of scientific laws and the consequences which derive from them is a tribute to both empirical and theoretical science!

  127. [...] Nice work if you can get it: 2…Michele on Nice work if you can get it: 2…tallbloke on Unified Theory of Climate, Nik…Stephen Wilde on Unified Theory of Climate, Nik…tallbloke on Hans Jelbring: The Greenhouse [...]

  128. p.g.sharrow says:

    @Tallbloke; I assumed that the creation of an encyclopedia on climate/weather was the end game of this blog effort. You now have a small army of both interested lay people and cooperative specialists gathered here and a considerable amount of rough material to work with. Such an effort from here would have at least as much standing as Anthony Watts’ station examination project. And considering the apparent state of the art is sorely needed. pg

  129. Eilert says:

    Stephen, Ned

    I recently came to the same conclusion.
    Radiation of the surface is the access energy, which is not needed to maintain all the processes in the atmosphere.
    Cooling mechanism, like evaporation is far more efficient than radiation. Energy fluxes will always choose the path of least resistance. Thus for the surface to choose radiation as a cooling mechanism, it needed to exhaust all possible more efficient fluxes, beforehand.
    It will choose these beforehand to replenish the loss of energies in the atmosphere. This loss of energy manifests itself in the total thermal atmospheric emissions (from all gases mainly the bulk non-greenhouse gases like nitrogen, oxygen, but not excluding them) to space, as a consequence of the temperature of the atmosphere. This radiation is smaller than the radiation (directly from the surface) intercepted by the greenhouse gases, but not insignificant.

  130. Eilert says:

    As a further expansion to my comment at 6:12 pm:
    The radiation from the surface is not blocked by the greenhouse gases as is maintained by proponents, it is merrily delayed and find its way out of the atmosphere eventually.

  131. Ned Nikolov says:

    Erl,

    To your comment “Equally, should I wish to reduce heat transfer via a medium I would reduce the density (and pressure) of the medium, approaching as near as possible to a vacuum. Hence the vacuum flask.

    This a very astute observation and right to the point of this discussion! I’m particularly impressed that it comes from a “not a physicist, just a farmer with a practical bent of mind” ….

    The increase of heat transfer rate as a function of gas density is precisely what explains the highly unusual conditions of uniform (equable) climate that existed some 50-100 million years ago, which paleo-climatologists deduce from plant and animal fossils. In those times, the temperature gradient between the equator and the poles was almost zero, and tropical ecosystems thrived beyond the polar circle! Climate models have a very hard time simulating (reproducing) correctly such conditions with their CO2 radiative forcing… In our theory, however, the equable climate of the Mesozoic and early Cenozoic is easily explained by the much higher pressure resulting from a bigger atmospheric mass, which in turn was caused by high rates of mantle degassing due to continental drifts and ocean floor spreading. Our Eq, 8 allows for an accurate estimation of the surface pressure from reconstructed temperatures (Fig. 8), and predicts that Earth’s atmospheric mass was 80-90% higher than today during the warmest times of the early Eocene (50-55M years ago). This resulted in some 85% higher surface air density compared to the present. This much denser atmosphere was responsible for an increased meridional (poleward) heat transport leading to the observed equable climate conditions. Paleo-climate research has already concluded that unusually warm poles must be the result of a highly efficient meridional heat transport, but all efforts to find a mechanism have been directed towards ocean currents and continental configurations. No one has thought to looks into atmospheric pressure, which is assumed to be constant in all model simulations of past climates … Our pressure-based GH concept really tights a lot loose ends in climate science and the adjacent fields … :-)

  132. Ned Nikolov says:

    Tallbloke,

    You have some very good points about presenting this stuff in a form accessible to laymen, and why this is so important … We’ve been think along these lines as well, and I’m putting the necessary efforts toward this goal in my reply article.

  133. tallbloke says:

    Ned: more power to you, we would relish the opportunity to assist if you need it. My last two mails bounced off your spam filter. I was just alerting you to the new Loschmidt thread, where I have a copy of the page missing from the google books preview I sent you. It’s (page 1) of the Sheehan critique.
    add me to your white list if you want more useful stuff – I won’t mmailbomb you. Cheers.

  134. Stephen Wilde says:

    Ned said:

    “This much denser atmosphere was responsible for an increased meridional (poleward) heat transport leading to the observed equable climate conditions. Paleo-climate research has already concluded that unusually warm poles must be the result of a highly efficient meridional heat transport, but all efforts to find a mechanism have been directed towards ocean currents and continental configurations. No one has thought to looks into atmospheric pressure, which is assumed to be constant in all model simulations of past climates … Our pressure-based GH concept really tights a lot loose ends in climate science and the adjacent fields ”

    It sounds like your main focus is on using the observations and equations in your poster presentation to account for past climate changes on paleological timescales.

    My focus has been on using exactly the same principles to account for current and recent past climate changes.

    There might be a slight overlap in the middle but otherwise our works could be supplementary to each other.

    You seem to be concerned with changes in total global atmospheric pressure whereas I am more concerned with cyclical redistribution of the current atmospheric pressure as a result of solar and oceanic variability.

  135. Ned Nikolov says:

    Stephen,

    Our focus is not on paleo-climate! It is on explaining the nature of the so called “Natural Greenhouse Effect”, and the consequence of this explanation for climate science in general. So, the example with paleo-climate I gave above, is just a ‘side dish’, a desert if you will to our main course … :-)

    According to our theory, percent climate change (and in fact that over the past few thousand years) has NOTHING to do with pressure changes, hence the ‘greenhouse effect’. It all caused by changes in global cloud albedo … Look at our Figure 10. It explains all the climate forcings and their time scale of operation according to our view …

  136. Tenuc says:

    Stephen Wilde says:
    January 4, 2012 at 4:25 am
    “…Energy in equals energy out…”

    Not being picky Stephen, but the equation should be…

    Energy Out = Energy In – Work Done

    I think much more work is done than current estimates credit, regarding both organic and inorganic processes.

  137. tallbloke says:

    Tenuc: most ‘work done’ ends up being heat and leaving again. How warm is that thought?

    Time for Flanders and Swann to give their take on the second law:

    [audio src="http://www.uky.edu/~holler/CHE107/media/first_second_law.mp3" /]

  138. Roger Andrews says:

    Ned Nikolov says: “Paleo-climate research has already concluded that unusually warm poles must be the result of a highly efficient meridional heat transport, but all efforts to find a mechanism have been directed towards ocean currents and continental configurations. No one has thought to look into atmospheric pressure …”

    Well, let’s look into it now.

    If the poles warm relative to the tropics when atmospheric pressure rises and cool when it falls we would expect to see a link between pressure and the temperature difference between the poles and the tropics. Do we see one in the instrumental record? Indeed we do.

    compares changes in N. Hemisphere sea level pressur (from HadSLP2) against the surface air temperature difference between the Arctic and the Tropics (from GISS) since 1890. (Note that values are given as anomalies and that the SLP scale is inverted). The short-term correlation is a little messy but the overall trends are the same. As SLP increases the temperature difference goes down and vice versa, which is in the expected sense. The only large divergences occur around 1950 and after 2002, which, interestingly, is when the oceans quit warming up.

  139. Stephen Wilde says:

    Thanks, Ned, probably best if I wait and see rather than guessing. However I do think that albedo is related to shifting surface pressure distribution but you may have other ideas. From your figure 10 I suspect you will be relying on the cosmic ray effects proposed by Svensmark but I think my changing jet stream patterns and shifting climate zones are a better prospect.

    Tenuc, Better to say Energy Out = Energy in at equilibrium which removes the need to consider work done seperately. If work done then alters the equilibrium then by all means reintroduce it.

  140. Tenuc says:

    tallbloke says:
    January 4, 2012 at 8:58 pm
    “Tenuc: most ‘work done’ ends up being heat and leaving again. How warm is that thought?…”

    Yes, Rog, work turns high grade energy into low grade energy which eventually dissipates. However, some work done results in semi-permanent storage, like plant growth, which can stay trapped on Earth as coal, oil e.t.c. for millions of years. I have yet to see a believable estimate for this.

    Stephen Wilde says:
    January 4, 2012 at 9:27 pm
    “…Tenuc, Better to say Energy Out = Energy in at equilibrium which removes the need to consider work done seperately. If work done then alters the equilibrium then by all means reintroduce it…

    The elevated levels of CO2 we are currently seeing have increased the amount of plant growth on land (and sea???). Therefore there will be less energy going out than previously. Not sure how efficient photosynthesis is at converting photon energy to plant tissue, but I expect there will be high losses of energy, some of which will, perhaps, be trapped in other chemical compounds too?

  141. erl happ says:

    Ned,
    “the temperature gradient between the equator and the poles was almost zero, and tropical ecosystems thrived beyond the polar circle!”

    “This much denser atmosphere was responsible for an increased meridional (poleward) heat transport leading to the observed equable climate conditions.”

    To work that out is a breakthrough indeed. Coal seams existing in climates that are far too cold today, but were once tropical.

    The usefulness of a theory relates to the range of hitherto unexplained phenomena that it elucidates

    Roger Andrews,
    An interesting relationship you point to at: http://oi43.tinypic.com/2crtw8n.jpg

    The warming and cooling of the Arctic on thirty to sixty year time scales is related the balance between atmospheric pressure at the mid latitudes (which varies with the tropics) and the Arctic that governs the balance between the relative strength of the warm moist south westerlies and the cold dry polar easterlies that Tim Ball calls the Arctic Front. It relates to the activity of the ‘mobile polar highs’of Leroux.

    I agree with Ned when he writes re cloud albedo: “According to our theory, percent climate change (and in fact that over the past few thousand years) has NOTHING to do with pressure changes, hence the ‘greenhouse effect’. It all caused by changes in global cloud albedo … Look at our Figure 10. It explains all the climate forcings and their time scale of operation according to our view …”

    I write about the forces involved in the ‘percent’ or fractional climate changes here: http://climatechange1.wordpress.com/2009/11/08/the-climate-engine/ and here ; http://climatechange1.wordpress.com/2011/01/17/earths-changing-atmosphere/

    At the root of these changes is change in the Antarctic.

    To quote part of the conclusion from my most recent post:

    http://climatechange1.wordpress.com/2011/12/17/climate-changes-oh-so-naturally/

    The polar circulation injects ozone into the high latitude lower atmosphere. With little water vapor the atmosphere at high latitudes possess few of the properties of the low or mid latitude troposphere. It is this perturbation in ozone content affecting the weight of the atmospheric column (and surface pressure) that changes the wind, the cloud and surface temperature on the inter-annual, decadal and centennial time scales. It does this by changing the concentration of the one greenhouse gas that is beyond the influence of man. The presence of absence of ozone in the cloud zone is a matter for the sun and the atmosphere in a complex dance that challenges our imagination. It is the electromagnetic influence of the sun, depending upon plasma density within the neutral atmosphere that initiates a redistribution of the atmosphere and starts a process that includes a strong feedback mechanism. The feedback mechanism is in turn dependent on the night jet and surface pressure. It is the activity of the sun that determines the chemical constitution of mesosphere air that is drawn into the tenuous upper atmosphere over the poles. It is the sun that ultimately controls this circulation. The Earth system greatly amplifies the tiny stimulus that the sun applies to the tenuous upper atmosphere.

    In this way the cloud comes and goes. Global cloud and high altitude ice cloud in the southern hemisphere is most abundant between November and March when the Arctic circulation is influential. It is at this time when the Earth is closest to the sun that the most vigorous variation in the El Nino Southern Oscillation is seen. If we look deeper, we see a strong dependency of the Arctic circulation on the Antarctic. On the shortest time scale the Arctic circulation is frequently a mirror image of that in the Antarctic. On the longest time scale the AO moves with the AAO. The AAO sees by far the largest swings on decadal and longer time scales. The Antarctic is not only the strongest circulation, it is the least studied.

  142. erl happ says:

    I’ll try my hand at weather prediction:

    The stratospheric warming in the Arctic is a precursor for a cold spell to come when the AO runs towards the negative. That will happen when the current increase in geomagnetic activity that has moved the atmosphere away from the poles and stalled the night jet relaxes allowing the atmosphere to return to the pole. Over the last couple of years the AO and the Dst have followed each other quite nicely.

    Stratospheric warming:
    http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/stratosphere/temperature/02mb9065.gif and http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/intraseasonal/temp10anim.shtml

    The AO:

    http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/precip/CWlink/daily_ao_index/hgt.shtml

    The Dst index:

    http://wdc.kugi.kyoto-u.ac.jp/dst_realtime/201201/index.html

    A weather forecast from those who half understand the phenomenon: http://www.accuweather.com/en/weather-news/winter-pattern-change-on-the-w/59847

    There is a history of papers that point out the parallel between the Arctic Oscillation Index and geomagnetic activity in the winter months.

    So, the NAO (North Atlantic Oscillation) and/or the PNA (Pacific North America index) will reflect these changes.

    And the Pacific will warm as the SOI takes a plunge.

  143. tchannon says:

    Why during the 1970s when it became clear Venus has a turgid surface atmosphere with somewhat uniform conditions was no connection made with possible past earth conditions?

    What he need is paleo evidence of higher pressure. What is the effect on animals and particularly plants? I can think of a number of other possibilites.

    A problem perhaps is misinterpretation based on assumptions about pressure.

  144. Brian H says:

    Eilert says:
    January 4, 2012 at 6:29 pm

    As a further expansion to my comment at 6:12 pm:
    The radiation from the surface is not blocked by the greenhouse gases as is maintained by proponents, it is merrily merely delayed and find its way out of the atmosphere eventually.

    Quite an image! Giggling photons circulating between CO2 spinneramas.
    ;)
    [author requested -- Tim]

  145. Eilert says:

    Sorry Brian

    My first language is not English and my spell checker has not caught it.
    It should have been: ‘merely’

  146. Stephen Wilde says:

    Could Ned please comment on the matter of the surface temperatures for the Moon and various planets ?

    I’ve found a blog discussion that disputes his figures :

    Robert Murphy says:

    January 5, 2012 at 12:24 pm

    Ned, your “observed” number for Mercury’s mean surface temp is also way, way off as well. You state that the mean surface temperature for Mercury is 248K, which is 40 degrees colder than the Earth’s. The actual observed number (as opposed to your invention) is 440K. You have an “observed” mean surface temperature for Mars (182K) that is lower than the *minimum* temperature in its diurnal range of 184K-222K. The actual mean surface temperature for Mars is about 210K

  147. Stephen Wilde says:

    I just posted this at WUWT:

    “Ok, just following this along here then. If the sun were to heat the surface to -18C, the air would heat to -18C, right and no warmer? And even if we multiplied the amount of N2 in the atmosphere by 10 times the air would still only be -18C, right? Convection and conduction can’t raise the temperature of the surface to higher than the surface was originally in this example.”

    The original surface with no atmosphere has Mass 1. It will have temperature T1

    Add a non GHG atmosphere and the combination will be Mass 2.

    Mass 2 will lead to higher temperature T2 at the surface.

    Add more non GHG atmosphere for Mass 3

    Mass 3 will lead to higher temperature T3

    And so it goes with no need for GHGs at all.

    If one then replaces some of the non GHGs with GHGs mass remains the same as does temperature because the extra energy in the atmosphere from the GHGs gets removed from trhe surface by a mixture of faster non radiative processes for a zero or near zero effect on temperature.

    Which is why one does not need a figure for the radiative aspect in order to reliably calculate the surface temperature of a planet with a given atmospheric pressure and distance from the sun.

    That is and always was the true and accepted greenhouse effect (gravity driven) until someone in climatology who seems to have been unaware of the gravitational effect suddenly decided it was all due to the proportion of GHGs in the atmosphere and thus nothing to do with gravity.

    As we see here, lots of people were never taught about the gravitational aspect so the false scenario took hold.”

    Now I’m praying that Ned got the surface temperatures for the various planetary bodies right and can prove it.

    Even if he didn’t all it would mean is that not all the GHG energy gets removed from the surface by faster non radiative processes.

    We would then need to apportion the greenhouse effect between radiative and gravitational influences.

  148. Stephen Wilde says:

    I’ve seen Ned’s replies on these issues over at WUWT so query resolved. Ned might like to repeat his views on the matter here anyway but that is for him to decide.

  149. Ned Nikolov says:

    Fellows,

    I’ve been busy at WUWT today, while also working on our reply paper. I believe, we have conclusively resolved the Moon temperature controversy. The evidence has implications for Mercury’s temperature calculations as well. Here are some of my blogs I posted at WUWT in response to Robert Murphy’s attacks:

    January 5, 2012 at 12:55 pm

    About the Moon temperature issue – I would like to put this discussion to rest by sharing with you the following information I just got from two key people on the NASA’s Diviner project.

    I talked to the Co-Principle Investigator, Dr. Carlton Allen (at NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston TX) and the person in charge of the moon temperature data, Dr. Matthew Siegler at UCLA. Dr. Siegler told me that the Diviner webpage containing the temperature table, which Robert Murphy refers to (see http://www.diviner.ucla.edu/science.shtml), has actually been put together by undergraduate students, and not by him. When I pointed out the discrepancy between the numbers shown in the table and the actual data reported in the papers, he acknowledged that the values in the tables are inaccurate for what they claim to be. He also agreed that both modeled and observed moon temperature series indicate that the mean diurnal temperature is about 210K at the lunar equator and about 110K at the lunar poles. He apologized for the misleading information on the Webpage and promised to ask the people maintaining the page to correct it. We will probably see an an update in a few days …

    —————————
    January 5, 2012 at 2:09 pm

    I address the Mercury and Mars temperature issues in my official reply. But here is the situation in a nutshell. The Mercury temperature of 440K reported by NASA is an estimate using the S-B equation, and not based on actual observations. As such, it suffers from the same problem as the 250K estimate for the Moon temperature – an incorrect application of the S-B law! So we used our Eq. 2 to estimate Mercury’s termperature.

    The derivation of Mars temperature is briefly discussed in Section 3.2 of our paper (have you read it?). We used spatial data for surface temperature and pressure derived by researchers at Stanford University using satellite observations by the Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) spacecraft from 1999 to 2005. The 210K value for Mars mean global temperature is erroneous, since it is based on measurements made at only 2 locations at LOW latitudes by the Viking probes in the 1970s.

    ——————————

  150. wayne says:

    Ned, there are a number here and at WUWT that already knew your answers to be correct. I just hate to blare it out for you see what a mess of an argument you can get into with certain people also commenting propagandanizing there (JS). Rest easy, the truth will all come out in due time.

    Sorry for the off-color comment below yours on the integration question, I rarely do that. Just couldn’t resist it. ☺

  151. tallbloke says:

    Ned: thanks for taking the time and trouble to keep this thread live and up to date with developments at WUWT – I realise your time is pressed.

    Well done for delving into real empirical results and keeping the data providers on track! This is of huge importance in the climate debate where agencies seem to make unexplained changes to published results or give partial information which misleads.

    All this seems to be leading in a direction which points to a much larger influence on temperature gradients in planetary atmospheres and baseline surface temperatures from gravity and convection processes and less from radiative activity.

    More power to you!

    Please check and comment on the new G & T thread if you can spare the time.

    http://tallbloke.wordpress.com/2012/01/06/g-t-weigh-in-on-adiabatic-atmospheres-and-raise-the-bar/

  152. [...] physicist at Duke University) quotes another commenter and then gives us all an erudite lesson. If Nikolov and Zeller feel they need to take any of the complaints on WUWT about the way  they handle heat [...]

  153. Ned Nikolov says:

    FYI, I just posted this on WUWT, and thought this group might be interested too …
    ——————-

    Phil and Joel,

    About the temperature of an airless planet:

    Apparently you are confusing (unable to make distinction between) a temperature DISTRIBUTION over the surface of a body and the MEAN temperature of that body. The mean temperature depends on the shape of the celestial object (e.g. sphere vs. flat disk) and the distance of the object from the Sun. Those two factors along with the albedo are responsible for the amount of solar energy absorbed by the object. The DISTRIBUTION of the temperature across the surface, on the other hand, depends on thermal properties of the substrate of the object such as thermal capacity and thermal conductivity as well as on the speed of axial rotation (faster rotation will produce a more uniform temperature field, while a slow or absent rotation will result in a highly non-uniform ‘contrast’ temp environment).

    Our gray-body model in Eq. 2 assumes a non-rotating planet that has reached an equilibrium with the incoming solar radiation. This assumption is ‘bad’ only if one is concerned with the surface temperature distribution, but has no consequence whatsoever if one is interested in the MEAN planetary temperature. Think about it …

    Any real rotating planet with no atmosphere will have a temperature on the dark side greater than 0.0K. In fact, the lowest temperature in Deep Space is about 2.72K, and not zero. This is accounted in our model by the small constant added to So. If So = 0, Eq. 2 produces 2.725K.

    After talking to Dr. Siegler yesterday (the person in charge of the Diviner lunar temperature data), he agreed that the mean diurnal temperature on the lunar equator is around 210K (in fact his own estimate was 206K), and that the mean diurnal temp. at the lunar poles is about 100K. So, the moon average diurnal temperatures span the range 206K – 100K, which gives a mean of (206 + 100)/2 = 153K. Our Eq. 2 produces 154K … In reality, the true MEAN temperature of the Moon may be shifted a bit towards the warmer side (206K) due to the spherical distribution of the temp. field, and it may deviate somewhat above the arithmetic mean of 153K, but it will still be MUCH closer to our theoretical estimate than to the 250K currently believed by climatologists … What’s amazing about the 250K is that this temperature as a diurnal mean does NOT occur ANYWHERE on the surface of the Moon!

    So, please drop your arguments and embrace the reality.
    Thank you!

  154. tallbloke says:

    Ned:
    Beware of Joel, his vocation is to suck all your time out of you.

    The planetary temperature info is really interesting. I had never really considered how difficult it would be to accurately estimate an atmosphere free body’s surface temperature.

  155. Roger Andrews says:

    Don’t know whether this represents a problem with the theory or not.

    N&T’s equations 7 and 8 and Figures 8 and 9 show a non-linear but direct relationship between surface pressure and surface temperature, with temperature increasing as pressure increases and vice versa. But since 1970 the earth’s surface temperature has increased by about 0.6C while surface pressure has decreased by about 0.2mb.

    Any explanation for this?

  156. Ned Nikolov says:

    Rog,

    I’ve noticed that Joel spends 24/7 on the WUWT blog. Who can afford doing this? I believe someone who perhaps gets paid to do it … He also seems to be not interested at all in learning anything new or in looking at the evidence. This leads me to believe that he may have an agenda.. I have interacted with enough people like him to be able to recognize them rather quickly … poor souls if they only knew what they are wasting their lives for … :-)

  157. Ned Nikolov says:

    Reply to Roger Andrews (January 7, 2012 at 3:32 am)

    Roger,

    We are NOT claiming that the warming over recent decades has been caused by an increase in pressure! Please, read our paper carefully, and especially section 4. Also, ponder on Fig. 10.

  158. tchannon says:

    I consider both figures very suspect. Pressure is all of 200ppm.
    Taken another step, 0.2mb is equivalent to how much altitude change? (I think it is 2 metres)

    Temperature, is about 0.2%, this is in K.

    I add in that Nyquist rather bites on pressure measurements, where more or less all data is mis-sampled. Usually Shannon problems in there too.
    A metrologist would probably be chuckling. (word is missing from some dictionaries)

    Pressure is also a compensated reading based on assumptions.

    Did you know that some published pressure datasets are adjusted to match gridded? One instance is documented on the CRU server. A reason given is to do with sea level, want all the data agreeing.

    These are fine details where the short term weather is not really what it is about, yet seems to be main focus of most discussion.

    Coda: what if some pressure measurements were from ships. They even move up and down with load. How exactly is compensation done relative to sea level, if that can be defined? Might even be tidal effects.

  159. On the Aerology page on this site, provided be Roger. I posted a link to 172 Mb of the csv based data and samples of the new maps for the 2012-01-31 forecast for the highs and lows, with the past four cycles of raw data to show the repetition between cycles. Shows less change on a 6558 day period than from month to month..

  160. Roger Andrews says:

    Ned:

    “We are NOT claiming that the warming over recent decades has been caused by an increase in pressure!”

    I never said you did.

    But when you devote a significant fraction of your paper to demonstrating a relationship between surface temperature and surface pressure it’s not unreasonable to check to see whether the relationship holds up over the period of instrumental record. And it doesn’t. All I was asking for was an explanation of how your theory dovetails with this result.

    As to what did cause the recent warming, in Figure 7 you state that “Cloud changes appear to have been the cause for temperature variations during the past 30 years”. Well, they may have been, but you will forgive me when I say that the comparisons you provide to back this statement up are somewhat less than compelling.

    In the Summary you also claim that your “Unified Theory of Climate …. explains a number of phenomena that the current theory fails to explain.” It would be nice one of them was the recent warming, which no one has so far been able to explain satisfactorily in terms of natural forcings but which does coincide with a rapid increase in atmospheric greenhouse gas concentrations.

  161. tallbloke says:

    Richard Holle: That sounds like a positive result, let’s put an article together for the main blog so we can get some exposure for you. Send me a write up or advise me what to crop out of your page please.

    Ned: To clarify Roger A’s position, he is as skeptical as the rest of us about co2 driven warming but quite rightly helps keep our feet on the ground by requesting clear statements of alternative ideas.

  162. Roger Andrews says:

    TB:

    Thanks for that, but I’m probably not quite as skeptical about AGW as most of the rest of you. Based on the data available to me right now my conclusion is that CO2 does have an impact on temperature, but I doubt that it’s large enough to kill my grandchildren. But I would be delighted if Ned could prove that there isn’t one because then I wouldn’t have to worry about my grandchildren at all. :-)

  163. tallbloke says:

    Roger A: If Ned is right that the non atmosphere surface temp is much lower than 255K and g is responsible for most of the difference regardless of composition, then doesn’t that relegate hypothetical co2 increase to the realm of ‘so what’ ?

  164. Roger Andrews says:

    TB: If the chemical composition of the atmosphere has no effect on temperature then yes, variations in CO2 content won’t make any difference.

    The problem is that I can’t fit observations without assuming a significant temperature contribution from CO2 after 1970, and neither, apparently, can anyone else (e.g. Solanki & Fligge, Solanki & Krivova, Stott et al., Scafetta and West, Loehle and Scafetta, Beer et al.). Even Friis-Christensen, after his widely-publicized 1991 solar cycle length vs. temperature graph, now admits that “the … enhanced greenhouse effect is finally seen.”

    So as things stand I have to accept that the CO2 model, whatever its theoretical demerits, is the one that best fits the data.

    Don’t want to get ahead of myself here, so I’ll defer further comment until Ned responds.

  165. tallbloke says:

    Roger A: Although I calibrated my planetary solar energy model to the extant surface record, I did have to tweak it upwards to get a fit. This leads me to think that the mutual recalibration of datasets which has been going on may have exaggerated the modern warming. We are only talking a couple of tenths of a degree between ‘explainable by natural variation’ and ‘maybe there’s a bit of something else in there’. Things is, there are several other candidates other than co2 for the ‘something else’. I don’t think we should lose sight of possible albedo variation. Especially as ISCCP data shows a drop in tropical low cloud between 1980 and 1998.

  166. Ned Nikolov says:

    Fellows,

    About the CO2-Temperaure relationship: Your ideas about CO2-Temp relationship are based on a very limited amount of information, which is why those ideas are incorrect.

    This is a multifaceted topic that cannot be explained is a short blog. I have a whole paper devoted to that issue that analyzes CO2 and Temp data not only over the past 30 years but starting from 65M years ago to the present! It’s a hierarchical time-scale analysis using all available data sets (ocean sediments, ice cores, tree-rings, and instrumental measurements). The results can be summed up as follows:

    1) CO2 dynamics lags behind temperature changes on all time scales. The CO2 lag increases exponentially with increasing time scale of the data set, i.e. from 2.1 years on a decadal time scale to 12.2M years on the scale of the 65M-year record;

    2) The CO2-temperature correlation is highly variable across data sets suggesting a lack of direct causation. The uncertainty of the CO2-temperature relationship (measured in terms of 2 standard deviations) increases exponentially with the length (time domain) of the data set.

    3) The persistent CO2 lag and the highly variable nature of the CO2-T relationship rule out the possibility that CO2 has ever affected Earth’s climate, while suggesting that temperature is likely controlling atmospheric CO2 levels.

    The CO2 increase over the past 50-60 years is most likely due to degassing of the oceans as a result of a warming driven by reduction in cloud cover. Contrary to popular beliefs, man-made CO2 emissions are quite tiny (3-5%) compared to the CO2 fluxes between oceans and the atmosphere. The claim that human industrial activity is driving recent CO2 increase is a myth which is similar to the one stating that a minor trace gas (CO2) constituting 0.039% of Earth’s atmosphere controls the climate of the entire Planet! … It’s an absurdity backed up only by models with no empirical evidence!

  167. Ned Nikolov says:

    One more comment regarding CO2-Temp relationship:

    Official data from NOAA, NASA, Hadley Center in UK, and satellite observations (UAH and RSS) show that the global temperature trend has been flat (zero) for 13 years now (no warming since 1998!). In some regions such the Continental US, there has been a pronounced cooling for the past 12 years. At the same time CO2 continues to increases in a linear fashion according to official sources. This contradicts all IPCC projections for the past 12 years … I have a PDF with graphs showing recent CO2 and temperature trends, which I can email to those who are interested …

  168. erl happ says:

    Ned,
    You are a breath of fresh air. You provide the detail that properly answers the question. In particular your comment on the relative importance of evaporation for energy transfer against a negative thermal gradient, the relative importance of man made CO2 in the scheme of things and the lack of a temperature increase since 1998 should be a wake up call for the AGW proponents. But, as we all know, its a religion, not science and the movement is well supported by the media.

  169. tallbloke says:

    Ned, by doing a simple detrending of the co2 record and comparing it to lower troposphere temperatures I discovered an annual lag of around 9 months. This would seem to be consistent with your exponentially increasing lag with dataset length.

    I would like a copy of the pdf to post on the Talkshop if I may.

    Regarding attribution of airborne co2 increase, the most cogent analysis I’m aware of is that of Ferdinand Englebeen. He is sceptical of co2 as an agent of climate change, but in no doubt of the provenance of the increase. He says degassing can’t be the source because 1) the isotope signature is wrong, and 2) the oceans are a net sink for co2.

    Have a look and see what you think. It’s a single cogently argued page:

    http://www.ferdinand-engelbeen.be/klimaat/co2_measurements.html

  170. Ned Nikolov says:

    My CO2-Temp paper is still in progress. I have completed the data analysis and created the figures (lots of them!), but am still working on the text. I’ll let you know when finished …

    Regarding the isotopic signature of atmospheric CO2, this provides little proof that it’s man-made, because as shown by Roy Spencer’s own analysis, signatures of anthropogenic CO2 and ocean-emitted CO2 are indistinguishable! See these posts by Dr. Spencer from 2008:

    “Atmospheric CO2 Increases: Could the Ocean, Rather Than Mankind, Be the Reason?”

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2008/01/25/double-whammy-friday-roy-spencer-on-how-oceans-are-driving-CO2/

    C13 Isotope Ratios confirms conclusions reached in Part 1 above:

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2008/01/28/spencer-pt2-more-co2-peculiarities-the-c13c12-isotope-ratio/

  171. Roger Andrews says:

    Ned:

    “About the CO2-Temperaure relationship: Your ideas about CO2-Temp relationship are based on a very limited amount of information, which is why those ideas are incorrect.”

    My ideas, such as they are, are actually based on a very large amount of observational information. If they’re incorrect it’s because I don’t understand the theory, but then I never claimed I did.

    “Official data from NOAA, NASA, Hadley Center in UK, and satellite observations (UAH and RSS) show that the global temperature trend has been flat (zero) for 13 years now (no warming since 1998!)”.

    That is Indeed what the SST and TLT records show. But the surface air temperature record doesn’t. It shows continued warming after 1998 and about 0.2C of warming relative to the SST record since then. So why is the air still warming while the sea isn’t?

    “The CO2 increase over the past 50-60 years is most likely due to degassing of the oceans as a result of a warming driven by reduction in cloud cover.”

    Between 1958 and 2010 approximately 280 billion tons of anthropogenic carbon was released to the atmosphere (data from EDGAR III). Over the same period atmospheric CO2 increased by 75 ppm (data from Mauna Loa), representing an addition of approximately 120 gigatons of carbon to the atmosphere. So either:

    1. 160 gigatons of the anthropogenic carbon was absorbed by the oceans and the remaining 120 gigatons stayed in the atmosphere, or

    2. The oceans absorbed all 280 gigatons of anthropogenic carbon while at the same time emitting 400 gigatons of “natural” carbon.

    I don’t think explanation 2 is tenable.

    I’d be really interested to see your paper when it’s ready.

  172. tchannon says:

    There is unpublished work, years of preworks involved.

    I’ve not been feeling well enough to complete. Above is part of an existing draft.

    Input data is hourly, best available. A lot of explanation is needed.

    For those doing r2, not a good measure for this, whole period 0.999, rmsd is more appropriate but has little meaning in isolation.

    It is a proxy measurement, tales in that too.

    Note: there are TWO datasets with changed references, break is sometime at or just after year 2000. This is trivial to prove and weasel word admitted by the dataset publishers.

    I’ve only show this because I agree with Ned and my view is this is caused by deep ocean overturn, a little understood process. This might also be related to de Vries.

  173. Ned Nikolov says:

    Roger,

    To your comment above regarding the lack of warming since 1998 (January 8, 2012 at 6:52 pm)

    That is Indeed what the SST and TLT records show. But the surface air temperature record doesn’t. It shows continued warming after 1998 and about 0.2C of warming relative to the SST record since then. So why is the air still warming while the sea isn’t?

    This is simply not true! ALL data sets without exception including>; surface observations reported by NASA GISS, NOAA NCDC, and The Hadley Center show that global warming essentially ended in 1998. There is no 0.2C warming since 1998! Where did you get that idea from?! See this website, which illustrates with graph all official data sets, and provides links to the original sources:

    http://www.climate4you.com/

    Time is pressing, and I cannot now address some of the other CO2 issues, but might do this later.

  174. Roger Andrews says:

    Ned:

    The data sets you are looking at are “combined land ocean series” that area-weight SSTs over the oceans with SATs over land, and because there’s a lot more sea than land these series are dominated by SSTs and therefore show little or no warming.

    The only published series that shows global surface air temperatures is the GISS “meteorological station only” series (http://data.giss.nasa.gov/gistemp/tabledata_v3/GLB.Ts.txt). A trend line drawn through the post-1998 GISS SAT data shows 0.2C of warming.

  175. tchannon says:

    The other land only.

    All of ’98, last data as of today is Nov 2010. And since some like straight lines is one there.
    (computed by me so argument is allowed)
    Here, not clickable “www.metoffice.gov.uk/hadobs/crutem3/data/CRUTEM3.gz”

  176. Roger Andrews says:

    I can see I’m going to have to write a post describing in words of one syllable what the difference is between a “land” temperature series, an “ocean” temperature series, a “combined land-ocean” temperature series and a “surface air” temperature series. It would be real boring to read, though.

  177. Ned Nikolov says:

    Roger,

    OK, I see now what you mean! You did not phrase it very clearly in your previous post, and I got confused thinking that you were making a distinction between ‘surface’ and ‘satellite’ air obs… Well, a Japanese paper published last year have found that cloud cover over land has decreased more than over ocean during the past 26 years, which might explain the differential warming … I also think that NASA GISS station data may have some problems as those time series have been extensively manipulated by Jim Hansen’s crew, and that team cannot be credited with being unbiased … Regardless, a broader look at the CO2-temp relationship strongly suggests that CO2 follows temperature rather than the other way around.

    Sorry for the initial confusion on my part!

  178. wayne says:

    I think Ned Nikolov was speaking specifically of these two charts on the Climate4You site showing that in all major datasets there has been no increase in global temperatures since 1998.

    http://www.climate4you.com/GlobalTemperatures.htm#Comparing global temperature estimates
    http://www.climate4you.com/GlobalTemperatures.htm#Comparing surface and sattellite temperature estimates

    By the top chart composed of UAH, RSS, GISS, NCDC, and HadCRUT3 as a composite if you were to look only at the black average line, you could say the mean temperature has risen ~0.055 over the 1998-2011 period or 0.0042 degC/yr but that is basically ignorable. But looking at the actual data it is more than apparent that the 1998 temperatures were quite a bit higher than any year since.

  179. erl happ says:

    Roger, you ask:

    “So why is the air still warming while the sea isn’t?”

    and we now know that you are talking of the air on land at meteorological stations as reported by GISS.

    I will remind you of NASA’s need for funding. NASA funds the team. The team is not known for its integrity or its accuracy.

    My suggestion is that cloud cover is progressively recovering. But, cloud cover may still be insufficient to prevent some warming of the air over land. If the process continues we are likely to see cooling over land.

    What I do know is that there has been a spectacular recovery in atmospheric precipitable water over the last decade as reported here:http://www.esrl.noaa.gov/psd/cgi-bin/data/timeseries/timeseries1.pl

    The recovery in cloud cover is well documented.

    There is more than one explanation as to why the globe has warmed.

    The disparate rates of warming by hemisphere and season lead me to believe that the warming can not be due to a back radiation from gases that are well mixed.

    The area of the globe that should be warming faster is the land in the mid latitudes of the winter hemisphere where air descends in the great high pressure cells at the poleward arm of the Hadley cell dispensing copious amounts of radiation. But, the mid latitudes of the northern hemisphere have warmed less than other latitudes.

    That warming is due to CO2 is the least plausible explanation for what has occurred.

    What we have seen is a strong warming in the Arctic in winter. That warming is due to the dominance of the westerly winds from the south related to a change in the pressure differential between the mid latitudes and the pole. The connection with solar activity is well documented.

  180. Ned Nikolov says:

    Erl,

    I fully concur …

  181. Tenuc says:

    Roger Andrews says:
    January 9, 2012 at 2:12 am
    “I can see I’m going to have to write a post describing in words of one syllable what the difference is between a “land” temperature series, an “ocean” temperature series, a “combined land-ocean” temperature series and a “surface air” temperature series. It would be real boring to read, though.”

    Hi Roger, I agree that this is an area of much confusion but would be a dull read… :-). However what would make an interesting post is how the various providers of the temperature data adjust their temperature sets and the probable impact on trends shown.

    For what it’s worth, here are a couple of land data-sets 1998 – 2011 that I use to see what’s going on. The choice is arbitrary, but I feel that the bad publicity the CRU got from the Cimategate leaks may me keeping their noses clean and RSS are, perhaps, more free of ‘political’ influence than some others (even though the company is headed by Frank Wentz, ex NASA). I have least trust in GISS for example, as Hansen has a strong belief in the socialist/green agenda.

    Both charts show temperature have changed little from 1998 to date, despite an increase in CO2 levels over the period.

    CRUtemp3vgl

    http://www.woodfortrees.org/graph/crutem3vgl/from:1998/to:2011/plot/crutem3vgl/from:1998/to:2011/trend

    RSS-land

    http://www.woodfortrees.org/graph/rss-land/from:1998/to:2011/plot/rss-land/from:1998/to:2011/trend

  182. Roger Andrews says:

    Ned:

    Sorry I didn’t make things clear enough. Mea culpa

    Everyone:

    On the question of the much-maligned GISS series. Some years ago I made a determined effort to prove that the GISS “met station only” series was wrong. I spent months reconstructing the series from scratch, picking my way through thousands of surface station records, accepting those that were good and throwing out those that weren’t – including any that showed the faintest whiff of a UHI impact – and making a point not to apply any adjustments whatever to the raw temperature data other than reduction to a common baseline. Then I averaged the results using area-weighting techniques that I knew to be superior to the clunky grid-square approach used by GISS, plotted up my global series

    and got:

    To add insult to injury, my series shows even more recent warming than GISS. (Note: I update the series every year, 2011 data next.)

    So I think the GISSmet global series is OK. But you can’t trust the regional series. (An example is the GISS series for the 64S-90S latitude zone. Between 1905 and 1943 this series plots the data from a station (Base Orcadas) which at 60.8S isn’t even in the latitude zone.)

    And if the GISS series is OK then we have had about 0.8C of surface air warming since about 1970, and the warming trend shows no obvious sign of slackening. While on this subject I’m going to repost my earlier graph that shows a 120-year cyclicity in SST-SAT. If this cyclicity is real then SATs will continue to warm relative to SSTs until about 2030.

    Finally, if you’re looking for evidence of malfeasance in manipulating temperature data then you need look no farther than HadSST2, or even better, HadSST3. No effort has been spared to make these series look like what AGW theory says they should look like regardless of what the data say.

    Maybe more on “surface temperature” later, but it’s getting a little off topic and I have some kriging to do.

  183. tallbloke says:

    Roger A: So when you call that a ‘global series’ from station data, is that a land series rather than land and ocean? Or are some of the stations on little islands dotted around the globe, or, what?

    Thanks

  184. Roger Andrews says:

    TB:

    Can you give me a little time to respond on this? As Tenuc noted above this is an area of much confusion and it needs to be sorted out, but will take more than a brief explanation, and it will be kind of boring. :-)

    [Reply] Have a whole new thread for it if you want. Probably best as it is OT for this one.

  185. erl happ says:

    Roger,
    You say: “So I think the GISSmet global series is OK. But you can’t trust the regional series.”

    Can the whole be sound when part is corrupt?

    If we want to be analytical its essential to drill down to hemisphere (better the latitude band) and season. I went to the GISS series that you mentioned at http://data.giss.nasa.gov/gistemp/tabledata_v3/GLB.Ts.txt

    I subtracted the JFM figure from the JJA figure.

    The difference between the two and has declined over the period of record.
    The variability has markedly declined.
    DJF has increased faster than JJA since 1950.

    One is left wondering why? My guess is that southern ocean cloud cover declined giving rise to the observed El Nino dominance in the Pacific, now reversing.

    If the southern ocean has less cloud cover the Earth as a whole must warm. The ocean stores energy, the atmosphere vents it.

    To be more analytical I would go to the SST record. But I know that the increase in the speed of the westerly winds in the southern hemisphere (marked drop of atmospheric pressure at 60-70° south and increase at 30-50° south) over the last sixty years has enhanced evaporation and muted the SST response over time. So, I would put more reliance on the data from the latitude band 10-30° south where the winds are lighter.

    Next I would look at the atmosphere to see what has happened to specific and relative humidity in that same latitude band.

    The global series is good for propaganda purposes but next to useless if one wants to actually work out what is going on.

  186. Roger Andrews says:

    Erl:

    “Can the whole be sound when part is corrupt?”. In theory yes, because errors often compensate when they’re summed. I have a some corrupt parts but am still reasonably sound on the whole.

    The decreasing variance on your JJA-DJF plot is caused by an increase in the number of readings with time, and the net change is only about 0.1C over 130 years. MAM-SON looks more interesting to me.

    I agree with you that we should be trying to explain climatic changes regionally rather than globally. In fact I have put together some phenomenological models that fit 20th-century surface air temperatures quite closely at all latitudes between 90N and 60S except for a bust in the Arctic before 1920. The models use a modest amount of CO2 forcing (constant at all latitudes) and a smidgen of solar, with all the rest of the forcing coming from ocean cycles (PDO, AMO, NOI/SOI, NAM/SAM). The results look reasonable, but whether they mean anything is another question.

  187. I am inclined to defend the N / Z

    Hopefully there is robust evidence to solve the paradox of weak sun.

    Earth and Mars: Evolution of Atmospheres and Surface Temperatures
    Carl Sagan and George Mullen.

    Solar evolution implies, for contemporary albedos and atmospheric composition, global mean temperatures below the freezing point of seawater less than 2.3 aeons ago, contrary to geologic and paleontological evidence. Ammonia mixing ratios of the order of a few parts per million in the middle Precambrian atmosphere resolve this and other problems. Possible temperature evolutionary tracks for Earth and Mars are described. A runaway greenhouse efect will occur on Earth about 4.5 aeons from now, when clement conditions will prevail on Mars.

    http://www.sciencemag.org/content/177/4043/52.abstract?ck=nck

  188. Ned Nikolov says:

    To All:

    Just want to let you know that Karl Zeller and I are working on our official reply to the blog comments. Due to unexpected work load last week, we could not finish it as planned. The article is now coming along pretty well, and we’ll be able to share it with you soon.

    Thank you for your patience!
    -Ned

  189. tallbloke says:

    Thanks Ned, we’re on the edge of our seats here!

    Sometimes I struggle with stuff. occasionally, something which seems obvious to me but nearly everyone else disgrees with turns out to be correct. More often it turns out that I’m wrong. Anyway, I’m going to ‘put it out there’ and give a very brief synopsis of what I currently think the Jelbring and Nikolov-Zeller hypotheses are saying. Hopefully, the feedback will help me develop my understanding further.

    If the adiabatic lapse rate observed in an ideal gas atmosphere is set up by gravity as Jelbring, N&Z, Loschmidt, Gilbert, Brooks (and maybe the people who came up with g/Cp?) claim, then the high altitude air at the top of a transparent atmosphere is going to be at a cooler temperature, and the near surface air is going to be at a higher temperature than that which it would be at if that atmosphere was in isothermal balance. Energy is conserved and equally distributed overall, as it must be according to the first and second laws of thermodynamics.

    That is going to warm the surface (by conduction) to a higher temperature than the Sun would warm it to in an isothermal atmosphere and that is going to cause the surface to radiate at a temperature higher than that calculated by the S-B equation.

  190. Brian H says:

    “tallbloke says:
    January 8, 2012 at 9:03 am

    He says degassing can’t be the source because 1) the isotope signature is wrong, and 2) the oceans are a net sink for co2.”

    The whole isotope signature argument is a house of cards. From assumptions about source distributions to those about the uptake of isotopes in different processes, it way overstates its purported accuracy.
    As for “net sink”, this is logical nonsense. A sink for how long? Forever? Are the oceans’ CO2 levels rising without limit? Silliness.

  191. Brian H says:

    “Fernando (in Brazil) says:
    January 10, 2012 at 8:15 pm ”
    ‘Aeons’ is not a fixed number in English. It just means a really, really, long time. Or a geological “age”, which might be of any number of possible lengths.

    I presume you mean billions of years?

  192. [...] Nikolov and Zeller hypothesis has generated thousands of comments across several climate sites, but sadly little in the way of [...]

  193. [...] Implications for Predicting Future Climate Change” spurred intense discussions at WUWT and Tallbloke’s Talkshop websites. Many important questions were raised by bloggers and two online articles by Dr. Ira [...]

  194. [...] radiative questionThe mystery of planet 1 – Mercury dropping fastAusie Dan: Encircling the DragonUnified Theory of Climate, Nikolov and ZellerKen Ring: Earthquake predictions in Christchurch NZ : UPDATE: Huge quake hits Japan – Pacific-wide [...]

  195. [...] theory of climate we have been developing here at the Talkshop with important contributions from Ned Nikolov and Karl Zeller, Stephen Wilde, David M Hoffer, Ben Wouters,  Doug Proctor,  Tim Channon and [...]

  196. [...] October 2011, Ned Nikolov & Karl Zeller (N&K) published a poster called the ‘Unified Theory of Climate’ (Direct link to Poster) claiming that planetary surface temperatures can be calculated accurately [...]

  197. [...] in January, hot on the heels of revalations regarding the Moon’s temperature made by Ned Nikolov and Karl Zeller here at the talkshop, Willis Eschenbach published an article at WUWT entitled “The Moon is a [...]

  198. [...] Definition 2 is someone who doubts the validity of knowledge claims in a particular area of inquiry. This includes, but is not confined to the natural sciences. In the area of climate is the Climate Realists like Tallbloke, who doubt the greenhouse gas theory. [...]

  199. [...] air which has energy passing through it, as per Ned Nikolov and Karl Zeller’s outline of the situation in Earth’s atmosphere, which is a volume of air  contained by gravity, with sunlight passing through Earth’s day [...]

  200. [...] In Graeff’s case, it is not only “warmists” who may have such a reaction. It is “climate skeptics” as well. Graeff’s theory not only challenges one of the most sacrosanct of all the laws of science, it also gives strong credence to other challengers like Nikolov and Zeller. [...]

  201. David Appell says:

    It’s been over two years. Did this paper ever get published anywhere? How about a status.

  202. tchannon says:

    Bit of a tale here. Note context, I am co-mod and authored the WordPress content.

    I’d like to as a minder after what I want to say, perhaps unexpected, point you at an RA Fisher talk which if in an old way of speaking is pertinent even today though others are saying much the same. The university library server carrying this has been down for some hours.
    If I remember, do this later.

  203. David Appell says:

    So did this Zeller and Nikolov paper ever get published, or not?

    I have asked them a couple of times over the years, but now they have stopped responding. I take that to mean, no, it hasn’t gotten published, and that, yes, the knowledgeable critics above were right after all — N&Z’s idea is wrong.

    [Reply] There are many ideas in N&Z’s work, not just one. They are still developing and refining them. they still respond to me. I’m not surprised they’ve stopped responding to you.