Archive for the ‘solar system dynamics’ Category

The Cost Of Liz Truss’ Nuclear Future

Posted: December 21, 2014 by tallbloke in solar system dynamics


Paul Homewood points up more holes in government thinking on energy.

Originally posted on NOT A LOT OF PEOPLE KNOW THAT:

By Paul Homewood

New DEFRA Secretary, Liz Truss, was given a bit of a mauling by Andrew Neil last week, but what drew my attention was her constant reference to expansion of nuclear power.

So, let’s see how that might work out.

Current capacity looks like this.

Coal 21
Gas 35
Oil 2
Nuclear 10
Hydro 4
Wind 11
Bio 2

With peak demand running close to 60GW, consumption likely to rise during the next decade, and the need for a sensible reserve, we would certainly need at least 90GW of capacity by 2030.

Wind and solar cannot be included in any calculations of capacity, as they are intermittent, while all but 1GW of current nuclear at Sizewell B is due for closure well before 2030.

Assuming that the current level of gas capacity remains in place as standby, we would need 55GW of nuclear capacity, equivalent…

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Why all research findings are false

Posted: December 19, 2014 by tallbloke in solar system dynamics


An aeronautics expert writes sense about science. At the edge of design and testing in this field, the only thing between you and the field is thin, sharp-cold air.

Some disciplines force you to consider more precautionary principles than you could shake a climatologist at. But test pilots are adventurous and live life to the full. They push the edge hard in to see how it pushes back

Originally posted on The Devil's Neuroscientist:

(Disclaimer: For those who have not seen this blog before, I must again point out that the views expressed here are those of the demonic Devil’s Neuroscientist, not those of the poor hapless Sam Schwarzkopf whose body I am possessing. We may occasionally agree on some things but we disagree on many more. So if you disagree with me feel free to discuss with me on this blog but please leave him alone)

In my previous post I discussed the proposal that all¹ research studies should be preregistered. This is perhaps one of the most tumultuous ideas that are being pushed as a remedy for what ails modern science. There are of course others, such as the push for “open science”, that is, demands for free access to all publications, transparent post-publication review, and sharing of all data collected for experiments. This debate has even become entangled with age-old faith…

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Welcome post from people who know about polar bears.

Originally posted on polarbearscience:

NOAA’s list of purported evidence for harm being caused to polar bears by Arctic warmingis short and weak. It puts the gloomiest spin possible on the current well-being of an animal with all the earmarks of a healthy, well-distributed species.

Arctic report card 2014 screencap_Dec 18 2014

This year, polar bears are virtually the only species that NOAA mentions in their Arctic Report Card – they’ve put all their icon-eggs in one leaky basket [what happened to walrus??]. But polar bears are doing so well that to make an alarming case for polar bears as victims of Arctic warming, many important caveats had to be left out or misrepresented. Some details given are simply wrong.

This year’s polar bear chapter was penned by IUCN Polar Bear Specialist Group chairman Dag Vongraven (you might recall his email to me earlier this year) and a polar bear conservation activist from Polar Bears International (whose battle…

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CET: No increase in extremes in recent years

Posted: December 19, 2014 by tallbloke in solar system dynamics


Nice analysis of UK temperature records punctures MET-O’s ‘increasing extreme weather’ meme touted by their ennobled mouthpiece, Dame Julia of the Marshes.

Originally posted on xmetman:

I’m not sure that I accept that there has been an increase in Central England Temperature [CET] records in the last few decades as the following news blog from the Met Office claims:

Met Office Blog 17 Dec 2014

Met Office Blog 17 Dec 2014

So I thought that I would look at the daily series that extends back to 1772 for daily mean temperatures, and to 1878 for both maximum and minimum temperatures. I figured that if I added up every occasion when a record was set that I would get a good feel if there were more records getting set in recent years than in the past. Of course extremes take different forms:

  • Extreme minimum temperatures
  • Extreme maximum temperatures
  • Extreme low minimum temperatures
  • Extreme high minimum temperatures
  • Extreme low mean temperatures
  • Extreme high mean temperatures

So I counted and plotted all six types of daily temperature extremes. I ignore the early years, because there…

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1st in a Series of 4 posts by Talkshop contributor ‘scute’ examines Comet 67P and find it to b a stretched body rather than a contact binary. Navigate to the other 3 parts via the homepage.

Originally posted on scute1133's Blog:

Below are two photos of comet 67P/Churyumov- Gerasimenko. The first is a close-up of the so called body, the second is a portion of the head. These two areas have numerous matching points showing that they were once joined together. It therefore follows that 67P/C-G was once a single body that has since been stretched, resulting in the two lobes we see today.

67P/C-G is therefore not a contact binary as has been suggested. Nor is it an unstretched single body that has been eroded to form the separate head and body.

As it’s clear the comet was stretched, it must have been subjected to one of two scenarios. It either underwent a close approach to Jupiter under the Roche limit in the distant past or it underwent spin-up to around a 90-120 minute rotation period which would overcome its gravitational pull. The former scenario would need to allow stretching…

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Lord Lawson calls for suspension of Climate Change Act

Originally posted on Watts Up With That?:


Press Release 14/12/14

Lord Lawson: After Lima, UK Climate Change Act Should Be Suspended

London 14 December: Dr Benny Peiser, the director of the Global Warming Policy Forum (GWPF), has welcomed the non-binding and toothless UN climate agreement which was adopted in Lima earlier today.
Dr Peiser said:

“The Lima agreement is another acknowledgement of international reality. The deal is further proof, if any was needed, that the developing world will not agree to any legally binding caps, never mind reductions of their CO2 emissions.”
“As seasoned observers predicted, the Lima deal is based on a voluntary basis which allows nations to set their own voluntary CO2 targets and policies without any legally binding caps or international oversight.”

“In contrast to the Kyoto Protocol, the Lima deal opens the way for a new climate agreement in 2015 which will remove legal obligations for governments to cap or reduce CO2 emissions…

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How fast is the Pacific cooling? Pretty fast by the look of the sea level data.

Originally posted on Real Science:

According to experts at the University of Colorado, sea level east of the Philippines is rising at about 15 mm/year. However, their own data shows sea level at that location falling 36 mm/year since late 2010.

ScreenHunter_5200 Dec. 14 06.58ScreenHunter_5201 Dec. 14 07.06

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This is an open thread for Eclipses, Moon cycles and Inner solar system Observations to run in parallel with Ian Wilson and Paul Vaughan’s technical discussion.


Questionable Time #118

Posted: December 12, 2014 by tallbloke in solar system dynamics


A wry look at the #BBCQT Brand – Farage knockabout.

Originally posted on Questionable Time:

qt 118
Good morrow lemmings and a very merry Dimblemas to you all! We’re in Canterbury for this edition, and lemme tell ya, it’s a real doozy. What even is a doozy. I don’t know. This is merely the first bout of confusion and distress you are no doubt about to experience in this week’s razzmatazz rendition of Questionable Time. Onwards!

There are actually more women on this panel than men, but who cares about that! It’s time to let the chaps speak for once. Where would we be without them

First up is a question about petty adversarialism. It is somewhat predictably answered by…petty adversarialism? Actually, no, for these are the five minutes at the beginning where everyone pretends to be ‘mature’ and ‘diplomatic’ before inevitably descending into the standard shit-slinging that goes on every week. When will they learn? At this point panellists shouldn’t even try to fight it, but…

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Can’t. Breathe.

Originally posted on NOT A LOT OF PEOPLE KNOW THAT:

By Paul Homewood


Woops! Newsweek report:

About $1 billion in Japanese funding that Japan claimed was part of a UN initiative to help developing countries take action against climate change went, unnoticed, towards Japanese companies for the construction of three coal-fired power plants, the Associated Press reported Monday.

The slip-up highlights major gaps in oversight when it comes to funding climate projects in developing countries. The three power plant projects, built in Indonesia by Japanese companies, were listed as “climate finance.” But the U.N. has no formal definition of what constitutes legitimate climate finance, nor does it have a watchdog agency to ensure climate dollars end up in appropriate places.

Japan allocated the funding to Japanese companies under U.N. loans described as “thermal power plants,” with no indication that they were coal-fired projects.

The funding came from a pot of money established by the U.N. in 2009, when wealthy…

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venus-transit-2012Congratulations to Astrophysicist Ian Wilson who has had a new paper published at Pattern Recognition in Physics:
Discussion of this paper is going to be in the form of a workshop with specific objectives, and comments will be strictly moderated for relevance. The objectives will be announced by the main participants, Ian Wilson and Paul Vaughan, in their opening comments. Basically, unless you have something to contribute to the mathematical exposition, please sit this one out and watch.

This new peer-reviewed paper is available for (free) download at: . This post reproduces the one at Ian’s blog.


This is a reblog of UKIP PPC for Watford Nick Lincoln’s write-up of the IEA meeting I attended yesterday in Westminster. I shot the video clip below of Mark Reckless’ contribution, during which he notably states that a UKIP Government would abolish DECC.

The subject was Chancellor George Osborne’s Autumn Statement of the previous day.
Leading MPs from all the main parties were present, including our own Mark Reckless. The recurring theme of the debate was the deficit and the public sector debt.
For those that don’t know – and this includes our Prime Ministerthe deficit and the public sector debt are two different things.

Gerry Pease has sent us a solar cycle 24 update:

It’s all downhill now for solar cycle 24. Cycle 24 Max (smoothed sunspot number 81.9) appears to have occurred in April, 2014:

Cycle 24 progress (last update December 1, 2014

Cycle 23 Solar Max (smoothed sunspot number 120) was in early 2000:

Solar cycles 23-24 (last update December 1, 2014)

Note the progression from cycle 21 to 24:

Graphical comparison of cycles 21, 22, 23 and 24 (last update December 1, 2014)

Similar cycles 12, 14, and 16 had lower peaks than cycle 24, and similar cycles 10, 12, 13, 14, and 16 all had earlier peaks:

Graphical comparison of cycles 10, 12, 13, 14, 16 and 24 (last update December 1, 2014)

Smoothed solar activity since April is projected to be successively lower each month.




Oi! Cameron! Take a leaf from Tony Abbott’s book.

Originally posted on Australian Climate Madness:

Snouts out of the trough

Snouts out of the trough

It’s a drop in the ocean, to be sure, but at least it is in the right direction. The ABC, naturally, is inconsolable:

The Federal Government has slashed funding to a key United Nations environment agency by more than 80 per cent, stunning environmental groups ahead of a global climate change summit in Peru.

The ABC has learned the Government cut $4 million from the UN Environment Program (UNEP), which provides advice on environmental policies and climate change negotiations.

“Whether it’s air pollution, whether it’s ozone depleting substances, what’s happening in the world’s oceans, the conservation of biodiversity – for a relatively small amount, Australia benefits from leveraging well over $500 million in contributions that other countries make,” UNEP’s executive director Achim Steiner said.

Australia was due to contribute around $1.2 million this year, but has only offered $200,000.

Over the next four years…

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By Kelly Dickerson for Yahoo News:

ESA-Magnetospheres_600_MThe sun may be partly responsible for lightning strikes on Earth, and scientists think fluctuations in the sun’s magnetic field could be used to predict lightning storms weeks in advance.

The sun’s magnetic field can bend Earth’s own magnetic field, and this twisting and turning may be allowing an influx of high-energy particles into the planet’s atmosphere. These particles can cause a buildup of electric charge that can trigger lightning strikes.

From 2001 to 2006, during a period when the sun’s magnetic field was severely skewing the Earth’s magnetic field, the United Kingdom saw 50 percent more lightning strikes than normal, according to the new study. This severe skewing happens regularly as the sun’s magnetic field shifts. Scientists say this suggests the sun’s magnetic field could be used to predict the occurrence of lightning.



Nice blog post by Paul Homewood, deosntrating that global warming saves lives in the UK (and no doubt other northern countries)

Originally posted on NOT A LOT OF PEOPLE KNOW THAT:

By Paul Homewood


I wonder where Roger Harrabin is today!

I was waiting for the stats to be published by the ONS, but in the meantime the BBC beat me to it!

The lowest ever number of winter deaths was recorded last year, official figures for England and Wales show.

An estimated 18,200 excess winter deaths occurred in 2013-14, the lowest number since records began in 1950-51.

Last winter was notably warmer than in previous years and had a relatively mild flu season which contributed to the lower number of deaths.

The Office for National Statistics data compares deaths in winter months with averages in other seasons.

It showed 11.6% more people died last winter and elderly people were disproportionately affected.

Of the 18,200 excess deaths, 14,000 were in the over-75s.

Temperatures were 2C above average for December and January last year.

The ONS report said: “The peak in…

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Scientist Paul Pukite has built a simple model involving Total Solar Irradiance , the Chandler wobble and the Quasi-Biennial Oscillation which does an impressive job of emulating the Southern Oscillation index from Darwin and Tahiti. Here’s the result:




saturn2From New Scientist:

Earth’s comfortable temperatures may be thanks to Saturn’s good behaviour. If the ringed giant’s orbit had been slightly different, Earth’s orbit could have been wildly elongated, like that of a long-period comet.

Our solar system is a tidy sort of place: planetary orbits here tend to be circular and lie in the same plane, unlike the highly eccentric orbits of many exoplanets. Elke Pilat-Lohinger of the University of Vienna, Austria, was interested in the idea that the combined influence of Jupiter and Saturn – the solar system’s heavyweights – could have shaped other planets’ orbits. She used computer models to study how changing the orbits of these two giant planets might affect the Earth.


Jupiter and Uranus [image credit: Jimmy Eubanks / NBC News]

Jupiter and Uranus (as seen from Earth)
[image credit: Jimmy Eubanks / NBC News]

This brief look at Jupiter-Uranus synodic patterns follows the style of the Saturn-Uranus model post, where details of the method are given.

Here we’ll run through the relevant model details then compare with planetary data, as in the other post. It should be straightforward as it’s mostly based on just two Fibonacci numbers: 13 and 21.

For Uranus the notional orbit period will be 84 years (JPL value: 84.016846y).
13 Uranus orbits @ 84y x 13 = 1092 years (84 = 21 x 4).
This will be the full period of the model.


European thoughts on the Euro

Originally posted on Quartz:

The new 10 euro note.

The European Central Bank recently released a new version of the €10 banknote. (It’s nowhere near as nice as Norway’s new notes, but hey, what is?) The central bank for the 18 countries that use the euro decided to promote the release of the currency with a selfie competition:

Though the end of the month, Twitter and Instagram users who take a selfie with the new note and tag it with the hashtag #mynew10 will be entered into a competition to win a new iPad. But not all entries are eligible for the prize—”Selfies must not under any circumstances show the new €10 banknote in a situation that may adversely affect the reputation and honour of the ECB,” the bank says…

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