Archive for June, 2012

This is part four of a four part guest post by ‘Lucy Skywalker’.

Graeff’s experiments and 2LoD: Replication and Implications

Lucy Skywalker recaps: In Part One I described my visit to Graeff’s seminar. In Part Two I described some of his experiments in detail. In Part Three I showed how he developed the backing theory. Finally in Part Four I now consider the implications of this work, and plans for replicating the experiments. Replication is of crucial importance both to Climate Science in particular, and Science in general; without it, no theory is sacrosanct.


Here is a replication of one of Graeff’s experiments, assembled by him and ready to go. This particular experiment seems to be simpler in its results than the experiments we’ve looked at. But first, I want to think about implications of his work, to gauge where we want to pitch in.


This is part three of a four part guest post by ‘Lucy Skywalker’.

Lucy Skywalker recaps: In Part One I described my visit to Graeff’s seminar. In Part Two I described some of his experiments in detail. Now in Part Three I will at last  discuss how he developed theoretical backing to his experimental evidence. And in the final instalment (we decided to split it) I will consider the implications of this work, and plans for developing and replicating the experiments. Together with Graeff and Tallbloke, I firmly insist that, in accordance with Scientific Method, replication is crucial; and that without clear experimental backing, no theory is sacrosanct.




Figure 1

Linkage of LoD to annual earth mass redistribution by global sea ice extent as a proxy.

Author: Tim Channon

LoD (Length of Day) contains a strong annual signal which is good shape match (r2=0.91 at a time lag of just over 5 months) with global sea ice extent as a proxy for annual mass redistribution, ultimately driven by variation in insolation and earth movement.

This suggests no lunar involvement, a disconnected between this part of the dataset and the rest.



Figure 1

Tricky problems turn up if anyone uses the human calendar for accurate computations involving earth, the matter of the scatter in the calendar timing of the actual position of the earth in it’s orbit.


I have unexpected results to do with LoD (Length of Day) Earth LoD does have a significant earth oribital factor but it does not amplitude or phase match earth distance. Present this first as pictures. (more…)

I’m reposting this from Erl Happ’s blog because it deserves wider attention. This is a tour de force, pulling together the different strands of climate knowledge and weather lore Erl has been building up over the years. Hi ideas fit well with those of Marcel Leroux, who worked out that climate change is largely driven by longer term changes in the polar oscillations. Erl believes these are largely due to  ozone changes caused by solar variation which drive the global air flows via consequent surface pressure changes. As Hans Jelbring tells us: Wind controls climate. As Nikolov and Zeller tell us, surface pressure and insolation control temperature. Erl delves into the underlying causes of those polar variations, and connects the levels and latitudes of the atmosphere for us in a novel, logical and interesting way.

Climate changes – oh so naturally
Erl Happ Dec 2011


Change in the planetary winds (conceptually documented in the diagram above) is the least remarked but most influential dynamic affecting surface temperature.  Wind is a response to pressure differentials. So, a change in the wind is due to a change in these pressure differentials.

The following post describes why pressure differentials and the the planetary winds change over time.

From Wikipedia we have: “the troposphere is the lowest portion of Earth’s atmosphere. It contains approximately 80% of the atmosphere’s mass and 99% of its water vapor and aerosols. The average depth of the troposphere is approximately 17 km (11 mi) in the middle latitudes. It is deeper in the tropical regions, up to 20 km (12 mi), and shallower near the poles, at 7 km (4.3 mi) in summer, and indistinct in winter.”

The notion that there is  a tropopause in high latitudes or that it is somehow ‘indistinct in winter’ represents sloppy thinking.  At high latitudes, in winter, the air is not heated by the surface (very cold) or the release of latent heat (a cold desert). Neither is it heated directly by the sun (below the horizon). It is heated by the absorption of long wave radiation from the Earth by ozone. In consequence parts of the polar stratosphere and the troposphere are permanently locked together in convection. Consequently ozone descends into the near surface atmosphere.  This process changes the distribution of atmospheric mass and therefore surface pressure. It governs the strength of the planetary winds and cloud cover in the troposphere.  The process manifests as the Northern Annular Mode (or the Arctic Oscillation) and the Southern Annular Mode. These well recognized modes of inter-annual climate variation affect mid and high latitude temperatures and winter snow cover. But this is not the half of it. The influence of the circulation at the winter pole extends to the equator and the alternate hemisphere, especially in the case of the Arctic where stratospheric ozone concentration is more elevated than over Antarctica. If we imagine that this phenomenon is responsible for just the inter-annual climate variation, we reveal a blindness to the evolutionary nature of the phenomenon and its capacity to change climate over decadal and longer time scales.


Guest post from ‘Lucy Skywalker’.

Last time I described my visit to Roderich Graeff’s seminar. Now we look at the experiments in detail. Experiment trumps theory. Experiment is the final arbiter, as Einstein said. Only after looking at the experiments do I want to consider the theoretical elements.


One has to be aware of the depth to which the Second Law has been held most sacrosanct of all the laws of physics. Eddington said famously:

“If someone points out to you that your pet theory of the universe is in disagreement with Maxwell’s equations—then so much the worse for Maxwell’s equations. If it is found to be contradicted by observation—well these experimentalists do bungle things sometimes. But if your theory is found to be against the second law of thermodynamics I can give you no hope; there is nothing for it but to collapse in deepest humiliation.”

But today, Dan Sheehan of the University of San Diego could write in his 2005 book “Challenges to The Second Law of Thermodynamics“:

“The second law has no general theoretical proof. Except perhaps for a few idealized cases like the dilute idal gas, its absolute status rests squarely on empirical evidence. As remarked by Fermi and echoed by others, “support for this law consists mainly in the failure of all efforts that have been made to construct a perpetuum mobile of the second kind”… [yet] One would be hard-pressed to name ANY physics theory, concept, law or principle that has not undergone major revision either in content or interpretation over the last hundred years… The damning question is, why has it taken so long for [the 2LoT’s] absolute status to be questioned?”


Here is an important study of high relevance to our interest in the link between planetary orbits and solar activity.
H/T Gerry Pease:

The Astrophysical Journal, 683: L63–L66, 2008 August 10
J. T. Wright,  G. W. Marcy, R. P. Butler, S. S. Vogt, G. W. Henry, H. Isaacson, and A. W. Howard
Received 2008 January 8; accepted 2008 February 12; published 2008 July 23

We announce the discovery of a twin of Jupiter orbiting the slightly metal-poor ( ) nearby [Fe/H] p 0.1
( pc) G8 dwarf HD 154345. This planet has a minimum mass of 0.95Mjup and a 9.2 year, circular orbit
with radius 4.2 AU. There is currently little or no evidence for other planets in the system, but smaller or exterior
planets cannot yet be ruled out. We also detect a ∼ 9 year activity cycle in this star photometrically and in
chromospheric emission. We rule out activity cycles as the source of the radial velocity variations by comparison
with other cycling late G dwarfs.

Subject headings: planetary systems — techniques: radial velocities


A watched pot does boil!

It is remarkable that in the climate science debate, the ideal gas law and its consequences in dynamic systems has been variously forgotten, misinterpreted, denied and ignored. In order to clear up the misconceptions, obfuscations , ignorance, error, and denial, it is time to do some practical science in order to lay the various misapprehensions and mis-statements to rest.

It’s very encouraging to see that ‘Lucy Skywalker’ is intending to replicate the experimental work of Roderich Graeff. This is a serious undertaking and a difficult task, due to the very accurate measurement of small differences required. I have decided the Talkshop is going to enter the fray with some empirical experimental work too.  The aim is somewhat simpler. We are going to measure the effect of Pressure on a contained volume of 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 side. This is so we can determine whether there is merit in their hypothesis that the atmospheric temperature profile is underpinned by the effect of gravity on atmospheric mass: warm near the surface where the air pressure is around 14 psi, and cold at high altitude, where the air pressure drops nearly to zero.


Thanks once again to Ned Nikolov, who has drawn attention to this press release from the Hubble Space Telescope website. It seems that real astrophysicists don’t have a problem proposing that a rise in the surface temperature of a celestial body can be brought about by an increase in the atmospheric mass of an inert gas… Or at least that that was the case back in 1998, when this press release dates from.  You can easily spot the GHG caveat intro sections that doesn’t sit consistently with the rest of the piece. News Release Number: STScI-1998-23
Hubble Space Telescope Helps Find Evidence that Neptune’s Largest Moon Is Warming Up

Sub Neptunian Hemisphere of Triton

Observations obtained by NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope and ground-based instruments reveal that Neptune’s largest moon, Triton, seems to have heated up significantly since the Voyager spacecraft visited it in 1989.

“Since 1989, at least, Triton has been undergoing a period of global warming – percentage-wise, it’s a very large increase,” said James L. Elliot, an astronomer at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Cambridge, MA. The warming trend is causing part of Triton’s frozen nitrogen surface to turn into gas, thus making its thin atmosphere denser. Dr. Elliot and his colleagues from MIT, Lowell Observatory, and Williams College published their findings in the June 25 issue of the journal Nature.

Even with the warming, no one is likely to plan a summer vacation on Triton, which is a bit smaller than Earth’s moon. The five percent increase means that Triton’s temperature has risen from about 37 degrees on the absolute (Kelvin) temperature scale (-392 degrees Fahrenheit) to about 39 Kelvin (-389 degrees Fahrenheit). If Earth experienced a similar change in global temperature over a comparable period, it could lead to significant climatic changes.


Over on the suggestions page, talkshop contributor ‘mydogsgotnonose’ has posted an interesting synopsis of his understanding of constraints on the co2 greenhouse effect. I think this is worth discussing, so I’m putting it here as a post in its own right.

 Limits on the Co2 Greenhouse Effect
MDGNN – June 2012

There is probably no net CO2-AGW. If you look at Nasif Nahle’s work, it could even be slightly negative. Basically, the assumption by the IPCC that all the absorbed Infra Red radiation (IR) is directly thermalised is wrong.

The basis of this is two-fold. One is empirical.

This link shows that >200 ppmV [CO2] there is no increase in absorptivity/emissivity [assuming Kirchhoff’s law at equilibrium]. These data are routinely used in furnace design and are correct in that they work.


Friends in the parts of the world where the transit of Venus was visible have been snapping away. Here are the first few pics: