Archive for the ‘Measurement’ Category

H/T to ‘intrepid Wanders‘ for this repost from the Uni of Reading meteorology section. No settled science here, and lab model derived from far IR wavebands used in climate models and energy budget diagrams rests on a bunch of assumptions. Who knew? Obviously not Trenberth, who has no error bounds on his energy budget. So along with cloud microphysics getting the predicted absorption of energy by clouds wrong by a large margin, we have big uncertainty in the spectral absorption lines of water vapour. Ho hum. Business-as-usual in climate science land.

Water vapour continuum

  In addition to the spectral lines, it has long been recognized that water vapour possesses a continuum absorption which varies relatively slowly with wavelength and pervades the entire IR and microwave spectral region. This has a marked impact on the Earth’s radiation balance with consequences for understanding present day weather and climate and predicting climate change. It is also important for remote sensing of the Earth and its atmosphere.

  Discovered by Hettner (1918) as a low-frequency component of water vapour absorption in atmospheric transparency window 8-14 mcr, this phenomenon remained unexplained for 20 years, until Elsasser (1938) suggested that the continuum is an accumulated far-wingcontribution of strong water vapour spectral lines from neighbour bands. This hypothesis was generally accepted until the end of 70th years when the strong quadratic pressure dependence of the continuum absorption (which could not be explained by Lorentz (1906) line profile) as well as the strong negative temperature dependence have been detected (Bignell et al.,1963;Penner and Varanasi,1967). In this connection Penner and Varanasi (1967) and Varanasi et al. (1968) suggested that the main contribution to the self-continuum could be caused not by far wings of water monomer lines but rather by water dimers. Similar assumption was made also by Viktorova and Zhevakin (1967) for microwave spectral region.


Record solar UV irradiance in the tropical Andes
Nathalie A. Cabrol, Uwe Feister, Donat-Peter Häder, Helmut Piazena, Edmond A. Grin and Andreas Klein

High elevation, thin ozone layer, and clear sky produce intense ultraviolet (UV) radiation in the tropical Andes. Recent models suggest that tropical stratospheric ozone will slightly decrease in the coming decades, potentially resulting in more UV anomalies. Data collected between 4300 and 5916 m above sea level (asl) in Bolivia show how this trend could dramatically impact surface solar irradiance. During 61 days, two Eldonet dosimeters recorded extreme UV-B irradiance equivalent to a UV index (UVI) of 43.3, which is the highest ground value ever reported. If they become more common, events of this magnitude may have societal and ecological implications, which make understanding the process leading to their generation critical. Our data show that this event and other major UV spikes were consistent with rising UV-B/UV-A ratios in the days to hours preceding the spikes, trajectories of negative ozone anomalies (NOAs), and radiative transfer modeling.

Front. Environ. Sci., 08 July 2014 | doi: 10.3389/fenvs.2014.00019


OCO2, NASA’s co2 measuring platform is in orbit. Third time lucky. Bits of the original ended up in the southern ocean. The replacement’s launch was aborted several times due to technical hitches. This from El Reg:

Artists rendition of OCO2 – Image Credit: NASA

NASA’s Orbiting Carbon Observatory 2 (OCO-2) not only managed to lift off today, it also achieved successful separation from its booster stack and got into orbit.

The satellite – which will study the absorption of sunlight by carbon dioxide in Earth’s atmosphere – is the third attempt to get a CO2-measuring craft into space by the American space agency. The OCO-1 in 2009 and follow-up Glory in 2011 both failed when they weren’t able to complete their first stage separation.

Laying the Points Out

Posted: July 2, 2014 by Rog Tallbloke in Analysis, Dataset, Measurement


Brandon’s take on the temperature record debacle

Originally posted on Izuru:

There has been a lot of hoopla about supposed problems in the surface temperature record recently. Unfortunately, a lot of people don’t seem to understand what the hoopla is actually about. I think the problem is people have focused too much on rhetoric and too little on actual information. I’d like to try to reverse that.

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[image credit:]

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James Delingpole highlights the absurdity of US ‘climate policy’ – $4 trillion for what?

In a week when confidence in sea surface temperatures as a measure of ‘climate change’ seems to have gone out of the window, the eye-watering cost of trying to influence the planet’s weather systems beggars belief.


Reblog from The Hockey Schtick, new paper in Quarterly Journal of the Royal Meteorological Society. Pesky radiosonde data again. Maybe the balloon has gone up on models Climate Sim World.

New paper finds climate models violate the ‘basic physics’ of the 2nd law of thermodynamics
A paper published today in the Quarterly Journal of the Royal Meteorological Society finds climate models violate the ‘basic physics’ of the Second Law of Thermodynamics with respect to simulating conventional turbulent heat flow, one of the most important mechanisms of heat transfer in the atmosphere.

According to the authors,
“Numerical models of the atmosphere should fulfil fundamental physical laws. The Second Law of thermodynamics is associated with positive local entropy production and dissipation of available energy.”
i.e. entropy always increases and energy always dissipates per the second law of thermodynamics. …

Link to THE HOCKEY SCHTICK and paywalled paper.



Repost from Tim Channon’s blog.

Originally posted on Deadal Earth:

This large article was composed some time ago, last edit Oct 2013 it seems but left unpublished, one of dozens.


There is a disturbing story behind the current CET dataset as will be revealed in Part 2. The above plot sets the scene, a straight illustration of the whole dataset with timeline.

This blog article is intended as a backgrounder covering a variety of information including links to official copies of the two historic Manley papers which are the basis of the CET dataset. In my opinion CET is misrepresented as more instrument based than it is in reality. More reasonably it is an expert opinion on weather.

The Met Office CET web page[1] mentions the whole data then plays pea and thimble silently showing a plot of the later subset. Reason to be revealed in part 2.

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This is first art from access to the Chilbolton Observatory datasets.

Note: autoscaling has been allowed.

Data source Chilbolton Observatory and BADC archive [Ref1]


My thanks to Tony Thomas for giving the talkshop the exclusive of his take on this breaking news item:

Gergis findings re-surface – the Hockey Stick lives!

By Tony Thomas 31-03-2014

josh-gergisHello again Hockey Stick, goodbye global Medieval Warming Period.

These are the conclusions of a multi-proxy 1000-year climate reconstruction published today (March 31) in Nature Climate Change, by Dr Raphael Neukom of the Oeschger Centre at the University of Bern, and Dr Joelle Gergis of the University of Melbourne.

Dr  Neukom   summed up for a University of Melbourne press release:

The study showed the ‘Medieval Warm Period’, as identified in some European chronicles, was a regional phenomenon. 

During the same period, temperatures in the Southern Hemisphere were only average. Our study revealed it was not a common climate event that many people have previously assumed.

The paper claims that in 99.7 percent of the results, the warmest decade of the millennium occurred after 1970.

The press release says,“And surprisingly, only twice over the entire past millennium have both hemispheres simultaneously shown extreme temperatures.

One of these occasions was a global cold period in the 17th century; the other was the current warming phase”.”[1]


level_playing_fieldTwitter climate debate warrior ‘Ima Disbelievin‘ sent me this short article which is worth a post. It’s a followup to the Tony Thomas article a week or so back which covered the story about the American Physical Society APS reworking their position statement on climate change and global warming.

In the American Physical Science’s transcript of discussions relating to their upcoming revision of their position statement on Anthropogenic Climate Change, Dr. Collins states:

So, we build climate models. We assume when we construct those models that the net energy balance of the planet was identically zero or effectively zero at the start of industrialization.


Guest Post emailed to me  by Tony Thomas, originally published at Quadrant online:

Finally, Some Real Climate Science
Tony Thomas 18-3-2014

Shulz_cartoon_for_APSThe American Physical Society has been amongst the loudest alarmist organisations whipping up hysteria about CO2, but a review of its position that has placed three sceptics on the six-member investigatory panel strongly suggests the tide has turned.

The 50,000-strong American body of physicists, the American Physical Society (APS), seems to be turning significantly sceptical on climate alarmism.

The same APS put out a formal statement in 2007 adding its voice to the alarmist hue and cry. That statement caused resignations of some of its top physicists (including 1973 Nobel Prize winner Ivar Giaever and Hal Lewis, Emeritus Professor of Physics, University of California, Santa Barbara).[1] The APS was forced by 2010 to add some humiliating clarifications but retained the original statement that the evidence for global warming was ‘incontrovertible’.[2]

By its statutes, the APS must review such policy statements each half-decade and that scheduled review is now under way, overseen by the APS President Malcolm Beasley.

The review, run by the society’s Panel on Public Affairs, includes four powerful shocks for the alarmist science establishment.[3]


On UCLA’s main website there is a ‘space missions’ page. On it there is a section for the Diviner mission, which mapped the Moon’s surface temperature. We covered it in a series of posts a while back, as it is crucial to our understanding of Earth’s climate:

divops_lroflybyDiviner: The Diviner Lunar Radiometer is one of seven instruments aboard NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter spacecraft, which was launched on June 18, 2009. It is the first instrument to create detailed, global maps of surface temperature over the lunar day and year. Diviner’s measurements are also used to map compositional variations, derive subsurface temperatures, assess the stability of potential polar ice deposits, and infer landing hazards such as roughness and rock abundance. Read more here.

But the links to the diviner subdomain are broken, and although references to other pages about the mission such as press releases and news articles are found by searching the UCLA site, the science has gone. OK, so websites get changed, links get broken, servers crash and don’t get rebooted for a while. So what?  Why does this matter?


Announcement on the SORCE Status page:

TSI-stpsat3Total Irradiance Monitor Status

(updated 24 Feb. 2014)

TIM daily solar measurements have resumed in a new operations mode.

The TIM, along with all other SORCE instruments, ceased collecting solar measurements after a battery cell failure on 30 July 2013. The LASP SORCE spacecraft operations team has implemented a new means of operating the instrument to acquire continued TSI measurements in the present limited-power mode. These measurements are expected to be more intermittent and of lower quality than those during the primary mission phase due to thermal and pointing issues, and this will be reflected in the time-dependent uncertainties given in the released data files.


Lisa Goddard of the International Research Institute for Climate and Society, Columbia University, Palisades, New York has a commentary article in Nature Climate Change today entitled Heat hide and seek’ which caught my eye. In part it says this:

Natural variability seems to be capable of accounting for changes in ocean heat uptake of the magnitude experienced. Many recent studies point to the role of PDO in this recent hiatus. What is particularly compelling is that this period has also been one of negative PDO. Further suggestive evidence is that the last period with decade-scale trends in global mean temperature as weak as that experienced since the turn of the century occurred through the 1950s and early 1960s, which was another period dominated by very negative PDO conditions. This shows that hiatus periods are unusual but not unprecedented.


Nicola Scafetta and Richard Willson have a new paper in press which contains the most thorough analysis yet of the intercomparison of the empirical ACRIM and modeled PMOD TSI series. It’s a comprehensive yet readable paper of high interest to all diligent climate researchers interested in determining the relative strengths of various climate drivers. It is also an important historical document for philosophers of science investigating the shift from observation based empirical solar science to model based  dogma underpinning preconceptions of the power of trace gases to control Earth’s surface temperature. The IPCC and Team Wassup’s Leif Svalgaard are not going to like it, and will therefore try to ignore it, thus further underminng their credibility.


ACRIM total solar irradiance satellite composite validation versus TSI proxy models
Nicola Scafetta & Richard C. Willson

From the paper:

PMOD TSI composite (Fröhlich and Lean 1998; Fröhlich 2004, 2006, 2012) is essentially a theoretical model originally designed to agree with Lean’s TSI proxy model (Fröhlich and Lean 1998). It relies on postulated but experimentally unverified drifts in the ERB record during the ACRIM Gap,and other alterations of the published ERB and ACRIM results, that are not recognized by their original experimental teams and have not been verified by the PMOD by original computations using ERB or ACRIM1 data.


John Christy has been interviewed by ‘Talking about the weather‘:

christyJohn Christy, director of the Earth System Science Center at the University of Alabama-Huntsville.John Christy is a climate scientist at the University of Alabama-Huntsville. Along with Roy Spencer, he developed the first satellite temperature record of the Earth. Skeptical about catastrophic anthropogenic global warming, he has been invited to speak before Congress several times. He is the director of the Earth System Science Center at UAH.

TATW: What would be the single piece of information that you would convey to people who have strong opinions about climate and little knowledge?

CHRISTY: A fundamental aspect of science is that when we scientifically understand a system, we are able to predict how the system evolves in time. The comparison of model output with observations indicates we have much less understanding than what is needed to predict it with any confidence. I certainly don’t see the predictive skill necessary for policy determination.


Metdesk: Current weather in UK

Posted: February 5, 2014 by Rog Tallbloke in Forecasting, Measurement, weather

Current image from You can follow their twitter feed @metdesk


From the National Radio Astronomy Observatory, news that won’t surprise talkshoppers too much. Interesting though. Large magnetic field links binary pair

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Astronomers have found a giant magnetic loop stretched outward from one of the stars making up the famous double-star system Algol. The scientists used an international collection of radio telescopes to discover the feature, which may help explain details of previous observations of the stellar system.

Artist’s conception of Algol star system
with radio image superimposed on grid.
CREDIT: Peterson et al., NRAO/AUI/NSF

“This is the first time we’ve seen a feature like this in the magnetic field of any star other than the Sun,” said William Peterson, of the University of Iowa.

The pair, 93 light-years from Earth, includes a star about 3 times more massive than the Sun and a less-massive companion, orbiting it at a distance of 5.8 million miles, only about six percent of the distance between Earth and the Sun. The newly-discovered magnetic loop emerges from the poles of the less-massive star and stretches outward in the direction of the primary star. As the secondary star orbits its companion, one side — the side with the magnetic loop — constantly faces the more-massive star, just as the same side of our Moon always faces the Earth.


Guest post by Tim Cullen covering natural philosophy from pre-historic Scotland, Plato and Kepler to a sub-atomic theory developed by an eminently well qualified nuclear physicist.

Phi in the Sky - As Above So Below

The renaissance of Natural Philosophy in the Renaissance period laid the foundation stones which enabled the construction of the modern scientific edifice.

The Renaissance also renewed interest in anti-Aristotelian theories of nature considered as an organic, living whole comprehensible independently of theology, as in the work of Nicholas of Cusa, Nicholas Copernicus, Giordano Bruno, Telesius, and Tommaso Campanella.


I’m amused to see Global Warmist Professor Chris Turney’s expedition to Antarctica to retrace polar explorer Douglas Mawson’s route and replicate measurements has run into a spot of bother.