Graeff’s development of theory to account for his experimental data

Posted: June 28, 2012 by tchannon in atmosphere, Gravity, Measurement, methodology

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.

ls-1

BACKGROUND TO GRAEFF’S THEORETICAL WORK

Reading Graeff’s book, with his life story set alongside his scientific work, helped a lot. Surviving the fire bombing of Hamburg in World War Two drove him to work proactively for non-violence (the Blue Rose) and peaceful energy sources. He could take nobody’s word as gospel, not even in Science – he liked to get things to work for himself. He ran his own company.

When he retired, he wanted to return to his youthful fascination, and devise an experimental challenge to the Second Law. It actually had nothing to do with gravity. His interest with gravity only arose when his instruments recorded a tiny but clear negative temperature gradient in a vertical column of air, that “should not” have been there at all. But he believed his instruments were trustworthy. So he devised new experiments to focus on this anomaly. Over ten years, he devised essentially hundreds of variations on the basic experiment.

I came to see his gradual acquisition of scientific understanding from the inside, and this helped me grasp his theory. In the end I was surprised with how utterly logical and simple it all was, and how easy to calculate – and I still wonder why other physicists have not discovered this before. Perhaps it looked too simple to be true. But it was arrived at by a whole lifetime of experience.

It has been good to see so much interest on the thread following my first post. But it is not directly related to Graeff’s theorising, which follows directly from trying to explain his experimental work. So I want to ask folk to clear their minds of previous ideas, to allow the simplicity of his ideas to percolate. Well, that is as I see things!

Graeff was grateful for not being a trained physicist, for as he said:

“Through his knowledge of the laws of physics, a physicist would be totally convinced that The Second Law of Thermodynamics, one of the very few basic laws of physics, was correct, now, in the past and in the future. A physicist so indoctrinated and convinced would never try to measure something possibly contradicting this belief. And if he would in his work somehow stumble on an experimental result indicating a possible contradiction to The Second law, he would not doubt The Second Law but the correctness of his measurements. Only someone like me, an engineer… would try such an outrageous undertaking.

“It reminded me about the method I used when I tried to come up with a new idea, a new invention. When you try to invent something, many advisers would propose [that you] look up all the patents already published in the field of your interest. This might give you new ideas… I used to do just the opposite. I never looked at existing patents, because I felt that they would stifle my imagination… So I always followed my own thoughts [first].”

ls-2

Graeff was getting consistent results, always showing this negative gradient that should not be there. He started thinking. It had to be gravity, causing air molecules, as they fell and lost potential energy, to gain kinetic energy which is warmth. But how to prove it? How to calculate it? How to explain it? How to develop a mathematical-physical theory?

BREAKTHROUGH!

One bitterly cold New Year’s Eve, Graeff found himself stranded at Pittsburgh airport. With 24 hours free, he relaxed. He watched the decorative pebbles… and suddenly, his physics mind took off. The plane might be grounded, but his mind was soaring. He could see and feel the molecules in the pebbles vibrating, affected by the gravitational field so that the molecules at the bottom of the pebbles ought to be warmer than the molecules at the tops of the pebbles (and would be, without conduction and convection). Wouldn’t this be similar to the gas molecules whose negative temperature gradient he’d been puzzling over?

ls-3

Could I not simply calculate the potential energy at the top, deduct its potential energy which it would have when it reached the bottom, when it was stopped there, before being turned around for its upward swing, and convert this energy difference into a temperature increase of the molecules involved?”

Could it be that simple??? Graeff got pen and paper in his motel room. “I did not have any physics book with me, but I knew the potential energy Ep of a body was equal to its weight W multiplied [by] its height difference H, so I wrote down

Ep = W x H

and as weight W equals mass M x gravity factor g, I added the next line

Ep = W x H = – M x g x H ………..[negative because g and H are measured in opposite directions]

Wonderful! Ep would have a dimension of energy like Joule. This energy would have to be converted into a temperature increase of the molecules involved, because where else could it go? This increase I would call T(Gr), or the temperature increase due to the effect of gravity. To calculate the temperature increase of a body due to an amount of energy added is a very normal calculation for an engineer, as the temperature difference equals the energy introduced divided by the mass of the body M and its specific heat c. So I could write down

dT = T(Gr) = Ep / (M x C)

Combining the two equations I got

T(Gr) = – M x g x H / (M x C) = – gH/C

This would also mean that the temperature at the top should be lower than on the bottom. Now for the first time I had a formula… and if it was correct, then T(Gr) depended only on the gravity factor g, the vertical height H and the specific heat C. It became interesting… maybe I could calculate the value for air right here in my motel room… I knew that for gases, there were two values for specific heat (Cp at constant pressure, and Cv at constant volume). I remembered that for air, Cp was about 1000 J/kg,K… it would have to do for now. Remembering g=9.81, it was easy to calculate… and I got quite excited when I wrote down

T(Gr) for air = – gH/C = -10 x 1 / 1000 = -0.01K/m !!

I was happy because I knew my instruments were capable of measuring this. But was it a reasonable value? During a plane flight the pilot would sometimes announce a temperature of -40°C at a height of about 10,000m. My newly calculated temperature gradient would mean a difference of 100K over that height… a bit high but still in the same ballpark. And would not convection tend to lower that difference? The value I had just calculated could only exist in air without any movement. It sounded quite reasonable.”

BUT THERE IS STILL A PUZZLE!

On getting access to accurate figures, Graeff calculated that T(Gr) for air should be -0.014K/m. There was just one problem: why was this figure about a fifth of the value he was actually measuring?

It took another two years for that solution to arrive.

PUZZLE SOLVED!

One day Graeff woke up knowing he had the answer.

In a nutshell, the factor of five represents the “degrees of freedom” of the nitrogen and oxygen that make up nearly all the atmosphere.

According to equipartition, a phenomenon well-known to physicists and chemists, energy has to be distributed equally between all “degrees of freedom” of the molecule in question. Degrees of freedom are the number of different ways or directions in which a force can operate. First there are the linear dimensions x, y and z for each atom. Then there are the rotational dimensions equivalent to each linear direction, in navigation and flight these are called roll (roll sideways), yaw (change direction) and pitch (change elevation). Then there are other vibrational effects that can apply to molecular bonds. But according to Quantum Physics, some of these may not apply… if the temperature is too low for the threshold of activation, as it were. Thus air has five degrees of freedom, not six, at normal temperatures.

The effect of the degrees of freedom kicks in with Graeff’s experiments, because gravity only operates along one of these degrees. And with the collisions (equally applicable to solids, liquids and gases), the energy has to be spread equally. Thus it happens that the specific heat given in tables has to be divided by the number of degrees of freedom in order to be applied correctly here. Therefore,

T(Gr) = -gH / (C/n) = -gHn/C

where n is the number of degrees of freedom. Now it is finally possible to calculate the theoretical temperature gradients.

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For air, T(Gr) is about -0.07K/m.

ls-5

For water, T(Gr) is about -0.045K/m.

It is clear from the graphs that these theoretical temperature gradients, now including the degrees of freedom, match pretty well what experimental results were yielding.

Graeff has managed to obtain interesting results for metals, but details are not in his book, and I have not studied his work in detail here – it must involve conduction as a factor. His work shows a high level of consistency, with quality and quantity of results obtained in other different experimental setups. Everything seems to fit his pattern of discoveries – and the results tend to reinforce each other. Even the slightly “high” figure for water (-0.05K/m, where theory says -0.045K/m) could logically be a slightly contaminating effect of “convection-inhibited” air in the insulation (theory for air says 0.07K/m). So I feel I can support Graeff when he says that while formerly he would hedge his bets and say “it appears” to be gravity, now he feels the onus is on others to show that it is not gravity-induced temperature gradients he is observing, measuring, and calculating with such precision and fit.

IMPLICATIONS – REWRITING THE SECOND LAW!?

So – Graeff has demonstrated both experimentally and theoretically that a modification of the full statement for the Second Law is needed, and that this is possible without contravening the essence of the Second Law. Graeff has written out his proposed modification here pp11-12 and here p17. I won’t dwell on the wording here. Maybe it needs tweaking. We can easily focus on it too much. I am happy to leave that to the professionals. Most important is to grasp the principle, as explained above.

But in essence, the Second Law applies to closed systems where there is no external force at work. However, since gravity IS an external force to all systems on this planet, we must now remember to take the molecular gravity factor into account where appropriate.

Graeff’s modification of the Second law statement is clearly of importance to Climate Science. But we will leave that discussion, together with questions of replication, until the final part.

Link to Part Four


Web content produced from documents provided by Lucy Skywalker.

TNC

Comments
  1. Q. Daniels says:

    The Second Law is a manifestation of the Thermodynamic Limit.

    For systems where there is no Thermodynamic Limit, or where it is not a valid approximation, it does not apply.

  2. Ray Tomes says:

    Your logic is good. I do it a slightly different way, but the same effect. When a molecule rises it slows down because of gravity. When it falls it accelerates from gravity. So it must be colder higher up and warmer further down due to this effect. I wonder if it works for the Sun too?

  3. Ray, exactly. And thanks.

    Plus it’s warmer lower down because there’s a lot more fallen molecules joshing each other for space.

    The Sun: multiply up T(Gr) for gases there, in accordance with the solar gravitational pull, and… I suspect it produces, directly, those hot solar temperatures. Partly balance the effect of gravity by magnetic force, and the temperature drops enough to produce sunspots… just a thought of mine… but who am I to suggest such heresies 🙂

  4. ferdberple says:

    (and would be, without conduction and convection)
    ===================
    While I can see how convection works against the negative gradient, I can’t see the same being true for conduction. If we simulate conduction as a perfectly elastic collision, the effective path of the molecules maintains the same curvature in a gravitational field with and without conduction, thus the gradient should be unchanged. Convection of the other hand does not preserve the curved path, and thus should affect the gradient.

    I have trouble seeing how this experiment in any way violates the 2nd law. We are seeing the effect of an external energy source (gravity) at work. It reminds me of the experiment of dropping a cannon ball from the top of a moving ships mast, and expecting it to fall away from the mast.

    Discounting the motion of the earth in the heavens, simply standing on the earth we are not at rest. We are not even moving at a constant rate. We are accelerating at 9.8 m/s2 when we believe are standing still. This acceleration squishes the molecules in a vertical tube towards one end, and robs those at the other end of their kinetic energy.

    In the tube is long enough, the molecules at the bottom end never (very rarely) acquire sufficient kinetic energy that they can reach the other end of the tube, and thus a (near) vacuum results at the top end of a long enough tube. This vacuum must be at (near) absolute zero, while the other end will be quite hot.

    Thus a long (insulated) tube in a gravitational field must have a temperature gradient.

  5. ferdberple says:

    Thus a long (insulated) tube in a gravitational field must have a temperature gradient.
    =======
    This gradient will induce convection in the tube, which will try and eliminate the gradient. A heat engine that performs work using this gradient will reduce the convection (by reducing the gradient). Thus, there is no violation of the 2nd law. The work that would have resulted in convection is simply being used to drive a heat engine instead.

  6. ferdberple says:

    Partly balance the effect of gravity by magnetic force, and the temperature drops enough to produce sunspots…
    ========
    Are sunspots “spots” or “holes”? Sunspots make me think of the whirlpools that appear in the calm ocean when the tide is flowing. At slack tide they disappear. These have the appearance of dark spots on the ocean. Most are only inches across, but can reach many feet across if the tidal flow is strong. A plasma vortex would create a magnetic field. Hard to say which is the chicken and which is the egg.

  7. ferdberple says: June 30, 2012 at 3:54 pm

    oh very good, peer-to-peer review at its best. (and would be, without conduction and convection) My bad wording. I was thinking of what the surrounding free air does to the pebbles via conduction leading forthwith to convection, and forgetting to separate that from conduction in the pebbles themselves.

    I have trouble seeing how this experiment in any way violates the 2nd law.

    Agreed. I keep saying Graeff only requires a modification of the statement of 2LoT. Graeff does not violate it in its true reality at all. But there are many here who confuse the validity of Maxwell’s untested hypothesis that due to 2LoT a column of air has to be the same temperature top and bottom, with the the validity of the essence of 2LoT that he was instrumental in formulating. A form of Appeal To Authority.

    We are accelerating at 9.8 m/s2 when we believe are standing stil

    No! 🙂 We are subject to an external force that would accelerate us if there was nothing to impede that acceleration…

    ferdberple says: June 30, 2012 at 3:57 pm

    yes!

  8. Trick says:

    Lucy 11:21pm – “No! We are subject to an external force that would accelerate us if there was nothing to impede that acceleration……”

    Yes! If you are just standing there on the surface of the earth, you are accelerating. Invoke D’Alembert: Lucy’s (F – ma) * dh =0 where a = g.

    Trick’s experimental proof (instead of powder, need a distressed coyote): If your GPS happens to be indicating Lucy standing around on a canyon edge and Wile E. Coyote comes falling by weightless on the way to the canyon floor (usually with an Acme safe right above), then in the super genius’s ref. frame you would be seen by Mr. Coyote (and the safe) accelerating upward at ~32.2ft/sec/sec . At least while Mr. Coyote’s h agl > 0 (and neglecting Wile’s terminal velocity in air, a copyright assumption of Looney Tunes).

    QED, Lucy is standing around accelerating. It is all relative.

  9. Q. Daniels says:

    I go back and forth on this.

    On one hand, there is a modified form of the Second Law which remains valid, as I wrote in the first comment above. On the other hand, the Second Law also claims there are no exceptions.

    Graeff experimentally tested it in the case of Gravity, and found it wanting.

    The Second Law holds for a specific set of conditions. An assumption was made that it was valid to extend it to all conditions without even carefully cataloging the assumptions.

  10. Tim Folkerts says:

    Ray Tomes says:
    June 30, 2012 at 6:27 am

    Your logic is good. I do it a slightly different way, but the same effect. When a molecule rises it slows down because of gravity. When it falls it accelerates from gravity. So it must be colder higher up and warmer further down due to this effect. I wonder if it works for the Sun too?

    Ray, you are missing one critical idea (which comes up repeatedly in these discussions). You need to consider whole set of particles (or the same particle on many different trips). What you say is indeed true for one particular trip of one particular molecule. But “temperature” is a measure of average energies of many molecules.

    Consider 1000 molecules heading up from the ground with random thermal energies. At ground level, they will have the same average energy as the ground ie the same temperature. Now imagine going up to some altitude such that only 500 of the molecules reach that altitude. The “slow half” of the molecules never get that high. In other worlds, only self-selected molecules that started with above average energy get counted at that altitude. If you could somehow measure the temperature of only those 500 fast molecules at ground level, you would find they were much warmer than the ground. Of course, by the time those high-energy molecules get to that altitude, they have cooled and slowed and lost some energy. The results of theory, experiment and modeling all tend to confirm that the NUMBER of molecules decreases with height, but the AVERAGE ENERGY (ie temperature) of the self-selected molecules that actually reach a given altitude stays the same.

    ** A single molecule on a single trip does get “cooler” as it goes up.
    ** The average energy of many molecules over many trips says the same with altitude.

    (Graeff’s experiments would suggest there is some change in energy with height, but it is not as simple as following a single molecule up and down once and observing that its speed decreases with altitude.)

  11. I tend to agree that (at the physical level) there are no exceptions to the Second Law. Forgetting about gravity as an external force acting on molecules was, to me, an oversight of the otherwise-great man and scientist Clerk Maxwell. One should remember too that he was the theorist where Faraday and Kelvin were the experimenters (though Maxwell and Kelvin did both).

    But I’d like to put another cat among the pigeons. This is what observation tells me:

    The intangible realm of Life almost by definition transcends the Second Law. Not that it breaks the Second Law, rather that it draws on a higher principle altogether. The Second Law only applies within the inanimate / physical level of reality – and we have a physical body although we are not just subject to physical forces, when we are alive.

    well, if the cap fits, wear it, if not throw it away 🙂

  12. Trick says:

    Tim F 4:56am – “The “slow half” of the molecules never get that high…AVERAGE ENERGY (ie temperature)…stays the same.”

    The T field varies w/height though. The ideal gas molecules in the gravity force field have always been observed to obey their eqn. of state PV=nRT as they do in their travels up & around the column so they would lose temperature as they lose in pressure (and vice versa). Just stating n is half does not make it so; n has to obey constant gas enthalpy, one closed insulated heat reservoir, entropy max. at LTE.

  13. Sorry everyone but what on Earth is this blog trail conversation all about?

    First of all, ferdberple commits the howler of describing gravity as an energy source when it isn’t. It is a constant, uni-directional force. It neither does work nor causes work. On the other hand, he redeems himself by showing (very elegantly) why there is no violation of the 2nd law.

    Then Lucy says that she agrees with ferdberple, but nevertheless suggests the 2nd Law requires a modification to its wording. Why? That’s a contradiction. Either it is OK or it isn’t OK, right? I have seen no evidence from Graeff’s work that the 2nd Law requires ANY modification relating to a closed system in a gravity field. I await with interest a clear justification of why a modification is required and if so exactly what modification is proposed.

    We already have a very good practical experiment in the atmosphere where the lapse rate is MEASURED to be around -6K/km. Yes it varies according to the level of convection which tends to reduce the rate, but if that figure is anywhere near the right ballpark it is way off Graeff’s figure which Lucy quotes as -0.07K/m which translates to 70K/km (unless this another case of one of Graeff’s slipped decimal points?)

    We really have to forget this stuff about gravity violating of the Second Law. Does the published atmospheric lapse rate violate the Second Law? Of course not. As I have pointed out previously, an atmospheric column that has a temperature difference from top to bottom can indeed be used (in theory!) to drive a heat engine. But that does not volate any law of thermodynamics because it is not a closed system – heat is continually flowing throught the atmosphere from the Sun (so the 1st Law conservation of energy is preserved). And nowhere does heat flow from cold to hot (so the 2nd Law is also preserved). And even if Graeff’s experiment really was a closed system (perfectly insulated from ambient) the heat engine would run out of heat pretty fast – some perpetuum mobile!

    The temperature discrepancies Graeff has found are very interesting but they certainly don’t prove any violation of the laws of thermodynamics. Simply repeating over and over again that they do, without any explanation or justification whatsoever, does not make it true. The fact is that his experiment is not a closed system either: significant heat is continually flowing through (either from or to the external environment depending on ambient variations), despite all those layers of insulation. I know it is. I have done the calculations.

  14. QuantumPhysicistPhil says:

    In response to David S, here we go again decoupling gravity from magnetism..big big blunder. Problem is you have a warped time-space continuum on the scale of process which causes problems for the second law. It’s not violated here but you have to understand what you’re measuring and how to compile forces of energy, whatever they may be.

  15. Q. Daniels says:

    David Socrates wrote:
    We already have a very good practical experiment in the atmosphere where the lapse rate is MEASURED to be around -6K/km. Yes it varies according to the level of convection which tends to reduce the rate, but if that figure is anywhere near the right ballpark it is way off Graeff’s figure which Lucy quotes as -0.07K/m which translates to 70K/km (unless this another case of one of Graeff’s slipped decimal points?)

    I don’t believe there is an error of decimal points. The measured differential is far in excess of the Dry Adiabatic Lapse Rate. This is only possible because convection is restricted within the column, otherwise convection would dominate, pushing the column close to the DALR.

    The fact is that his experiment is not a closed system either: significant heat is continually flowing through (either from or to the external environment depending on ambient variations), despite all those layers of insulation. I know it is. I have done the calculations.

    The temperature gradient inside is the opposite direction of the gradient outside. Furthermore, the gradient is established over time, rather than existing initially. That means that the resulting gradient is already in equilibrium with the heat transfer through the insulation.

  16. Hi David
    If you have a look at what I actually wrote in this article, that might help. Much of the problem may be simply semantics. This is what I said:

    Graeff has demonstrated both experimentally and theoretically that a modification of the full statement for the Second Law is needed, and that this is possible without contravening the essence of the Second Law. Graeff has written out his proposed modification [url’s inserted]. I won’t dwell on the wording here. Maybe it needs tweaking. We can easily focus on it too much. I am happy to leave that to the professionals. Most important is to grasp the principle, as explained above.

    But in essence, the Second Law applies to closed systems where there is no external force at work. However, since gravity IS an external force to all systems on this planet, we must now remember to take the molecular gravity factor into account where appropriate.

    iow, the heat effect of gravity (I worded that last sentence badly).

    The modification to the full statement of 2LoT is needed, I believe, because people have followed Maxwell et al in assuming (wrongly) that a column of air (or any substance) has to be the same temperature top and bottom, having forgotten about gravity being an external factor. They have even “proved” that a column of air has the same temperature throughout in equilibrium (Gibbs etc). Maybe the correction shouldn’t need to be said in the statement of the 2LoT, but I think it does need to be said, simply to correct 150 years of mistakes regarding one detail of its application.

    No, Graeff has not dropped a decimal point. This is of the essence of his discovery, that his temperature gradient exceeds the adiabatic lapse rate (when convection is possible) by such a large factor. Therefore we have to start to consider the adiabatic lapse rate as the combination of the gravity-determined temperature gradient, and convection, which usually offsets Graeff’s gravity factor nearly completely but not quite. Lapse rates vary and not just with humidity, because of local conditions. It is very telling that the lapse rates in mines vary hugely but typically are very much higher than in the open air lapse rates where convection is completely unhindered. Yes, partly this is because the ground heat increases as one descends – but that too fits Graeff’s hypothesis.

    Hope this helps.

  17. br1 says:

    David Socrates:
    “The fact is that his experiment is not a closed system either: significant heat is continually flowing through (either from or to the external environment depending on ambient variations), despite all those layers of insulation. I know it is. I have done the calculations.”

    But we still need to explain where the measured gradient comes from. It is the opposite way up of the ambient room gradient which is warm on top and cool on bottom, and other layers in the insulation have no temperature gradient at all. This is true whichever way up the setup is. The fact that energy flows into the setup is a cause for concern, but one can say that it is this flow that may allow a violation of 2LoT! What I mean by that is that, taking all the claims as true, if the setup was in an isothermal heat bath, then one could still extract work from the inner chamber temperature gradient, and any loss of internal energy would be replaced from the ambient heat bath through the non-perfect insulation. The internal temperature gradient always fights to establish itself, so never goes to zero, hence one obtains continual work from the heat bath. This to me is a violation of the 2LoT statement that one can not continually extract work from a heat bath. Graeff knows this very well and is quite happy to contradict such a statement. Heat flows from cold to hot because if the internal gradient starts out at some arbitrary value (such as zero), and then becomes established over time (which is what the experiments show actually happens), then the top gets colder while the bottom gets warmer.

    As many of you may appreciate, I am not happy with the theory outlined in the top post. Despite it looking promising, I have found no way to actually make it work – I can’t get a temperature gradient based on gravity slowing molecules down as they rise and speeding them up as they descend, try as I might, except when the system is being fed with a (non-equilibrium!) power supply. But I am also stumped as to how to explain Graeff’s results, so am looking forward to replication.

  18. br1 says:

    Q. Daniels:
    “The Second Law is a manifestation of the Thermodynamic Limit.

    For systems where there is no Thermodynamic Limit, or where it is not a valid approximation, it does not apply.”

    Can you expand on this, please? Why would there be no thermodynamic limit in this case, or why it would not apply?

    In this paper http://iopscience.iop.org/0143-0807/17/1/008 for example, one can get a gradient with height in the microcanonical ensemble (Velasco, Eqn(8)), but it is inversely proportional to the number of molecules in the system. So with one molecule the gradient is similar to what Graeff’s eqn above says, but with a million molecules in the system the gradient is one millionth of that. Increase the number up to one mole and the gradient is for all practical purposes zero. And all of this assumes *absolutely* zero energy exchange with the surroundings, otherwise one gets zero gradient even with one molecule in the system (as the one molecule equals the canonical ensemble over time if one considers multiple energy exchanges with the surroundings). So I’d like to hear your views on this.

  19. tchannon says:

    Note: I am largely keeping out of the Graeff threads, reasons: as co-moderator/contributor for someone else’s blog; troll / bad behaviour subject (mostly behind the scenes) where it can look like taking sides. In addition my take on the matter is rather different.
    ===

    Temperature gradients in mines.

    1. I have been unable to find convincing evidence of any unusual effect, particularly from papers to do with caves or subterranean spaces where there is no field connection with environmentalism.

    2. Mine ventilation

    I see a common mistake which is taken as evidence of something odd happening.

    Take a deep mine where lets say a lot of machinery and large numbers of people are present, all generating excess heat, Perhaps there is also excess heat leakage from below, which can include latent heat from millions of years insulated by thousands of feet of rock.

    A critical point is pumping large volumes of air into the mine will have little effect. Spelling this out for clarity, gas compression takes place on the way down where as a direct result air temperature rises as shown by the gas law, and the air cools on expansion as it resurfaces.

    We are dealing with a thermodynmanic cycle.(sic, leave that typo).
    A solution to give surface temperature air at the mine footings is compress the ventilation air through a surface temperature heat exchanger giving air at surface temperature at the surface but at the pressure at the bottom on the mine. Pass that into the mine via a pressure pipe (can’t put it down a typical leaky rock hole) . There are many variations on this.

    The use of chilled water, ice etc, are other solutions.

    Proving there is anything outside of the accepted gas laws is I suggest far outside of the regime in a mine.

  20. tchannon says:

    Lapse rate

    The best explanation I have seen for the formation of a lapse rate involves a conflict between two laws with the effect there is asymmetry between the ability of air to rise and fall. Tries to rise but doesn’t make it, falls back. The consequence overall is the lapse rate.

    Has to be sufficient temperature gradient for that gas composition and pressure and gravity. (vaguely I recall is about pressure vs. gravity vs. geometry, is a slight mismatch in laws)

    I vaguely remember posting a link to a discussion elsewhere which I think had a link to the maths which seems pretty involved and known.

    None of this affects Graeff except any compare with lapse rate might be pointless.

    I am reminded of an oddity I came across by accident. The difference between x^4 and ln(x) was so slight with some data I guessed at the wrong law. Power and log, not always easy to tell the difference.

  21. Tim Folkerts says:

    Trick says: “The ideal gas molecules in the gravity force field have always been observed to obey their eqn. of state PV=nRT ….”

    True, but that is less than 1/2 the story. My solution ALSO obeys the ideal gas law. Halving the pressure and doubling the volume at constant temperature ALSO is a perfectly legitimate solution to PV=nRT.

    Trick continues “… as they do in their travels up & around the column so they would lose temperature as they lose in pressure (and vice versa).”

    If you are talking about the organized BULK motion of gas (convection), then that sort of bulk motion requires differential heating to maintain convection. So, yes, if you heat the bottom and cool the top, then the top will be cooler than the bottom. If you remove the differential heating, then the convection will also stop, and you will be left with only random, disorganized motion of molecules. (I suppose you could talk about completely frictionless situations (eg superfluids) where bulk motion can continue indefinitely, but perpetual bulk motion is NOT the equilibrium condition in a viscous gas.)

    The discussion then focuses on the question “in the absence of any heating, cooling, and bulk convection, what is the equilibrium temperature gradient?” I maintain (in accordance with all of classical thermodynamics, including the ideal gas law) that the temperature will eventually equilibrate with no gradient. Graeff’s experiments would seem to contradict my conclusion. It is certainly possible that classical thermodynamics is wrong about this, but I am not holding my breath. In any case, it is not as simple as quoting the ideal gas law or following one molecule on one parabolic flight.

  22. Jason Calley says:

    One would think that a very high speed centrifuge (perhaps in a nice vacuum chamber such as any well supplied home would possess) would have a temperature gradient much easier to detect and reliably reproduce.

  23. steveta_uk says:

    I’m very concerned about the fuzzy use of terms in this discussion. We have apparent confusion of heat and temperature, of force and energy (w.r.t gravity), of “warmth” (whatever that is), etc.

    When trying to introduce something that appears to be new physics, I would think being precise in your terminology is fairly important ;(

  24. Hi Lucy,

    You say:

    If you have a look at what I actually wrote in this article, that might help.

    I did! And I also read Graeff’s proposed “modification” to the 2nd Law (twice).

    You say:

    Graeff has demonstrated both experimentally and theoretically that a modification of the full statement for the Second Law is needed, and that this is possible without contravening the essence of the Second Law.

    That is simply repeating back to me the thing that I challenged, namely that asserting over and over again that the 2nd Law needs modification (but without explaining why) is not hugely helpful!

    So for the third time of asking, what is wrong with the following rationale?

    1. The starting point of the “Graeff effect” theory is that the column of air is perfectly isolated (“no exchange of matter and energy across its borders”).
    2. So it contains a fixed amount of energy (established when the column was created).
    3. If we attach a heat engine between its hotter and colder ends, we all agree that the engine will transform a proportion of that heat into work (depending on its efficiency).
    4. What happens to that work? Let’s suppose it is used to generate electricity which is stored in a battery.
    5. As the heat engine grinds away, the temperature of both the top and the bottom of the column will drop, maintaining the temperature differential due to the “Graeff effect”.
    6. Because the column has only a fixed amount of energy in it, the heat engine cannot run for ever.
    7. So eventually the engine will stop.
    8. That is NOT a perpetuum mobile.
    9. No violation of the 1st Law (“energy is always conserved”) or of the 2nd Law (“heat flows from hot to cold”) has occurred.

    Discuss!

  25. Hi Q. Daniels,

    OK, Lucy has confirmed no decimal point error. So let us assume that the effect Graeff has detected experimentally is not only real but really is 10x the observed mean lapse rate. I have no problem with this because, whatever its magnitude, there is already a negative gardient to explain even when convection is taken into account. I am just surprised by the 10x figure. And if all we are discussing is the magnitude, I still think Graeff’s work is worth spending time on.

    My only beef is with the idea that because Graeff has empiricaly demonstrated a negative temperature gradient we should all leap around in incredible excitement and say that this proves that the 2nd Law needs “modification”. That is where I stick. See my reply to Lucy for my challenge on this!

  26. Hi br1,

    You say:

    …but one can say that it is this flow that may allow a violation of 2LoT! What I mean by that is that, taking all the claims as true, if the setup was in an isothermal heat bath, then one could still extract work from the inner chamber temperature gradient, and any loss of internal energy would be replaced from the ambient heat bath through the non-perfect insulation.

    Well of course you could. If in that scenario you describe heat is flowing in from the surrounding ambient heat bath, then that is wher ethe enegy to run the heat engine is coming from – the Sun!

    So no violation of the 1st Law (“energy is always conserved”) and no violation of the 2nd Law (“heat flows from hot to cold”).

    You see, the thing is you can’t have your cake and eat it:
    Either the insulation around the column of air is perfect, in which case there is only a fixed amount of energy in the air column which soon gets used up by the heat engine, so no perpetuum mobile there (see my challenge to Lucy) and the 2nd Law is not violated.

    Or we admit that the experimental results of the “Graeff effect” are in fact due to heat leakage from outside, in which case the heat engine carries on using energy from the Sun. So the 2nd Law is not violated.

    What fun this is!

  27. Hi Jason Calley,

    You say:

    One would think that a very high speed centrifuge (perhaps in a nice vacuum chamber such as any well supplied home would possess) would have a temperature gradient much easier to detect and reliably reproduce.

    Using a centrifuge to create artificial gravity in a relatively short column of air has been much discussed on several of these blog trails. Apart from the obvious huge engineering difficulties (remember the air column has to be surrounded by a collossal amount of insulation) there is a conceptual flaw. In a gravitational field, the force due to gravity doesn’t change significantly in strength as you move upwards away from the Earth. In a centrifuge there is a strictly linear increase from zero force at the centre to maximum force at the periphery. So it just doesn’t work properly as a simulation for the situation under dicussion.

    In any case, I also don’t see the point on practical grounds. What is wrong with simply repeating Graeff’s experiment by spending more on materials for a longer column of air and better insulation? That would surely be much cheaper than a centrifuge approach. I don’t see why it is even necessary to go to all the complications of Graeff’s setup – like concentric layers of different insulation materials. Also there is no point in having 2 tubes since all that is really necessary is to detect the difference in temperature between bottom and top of one tube to a higher degree of accuracy than Graeff was able to achieve, thus confirming (or otherwise) his results.

  28. Hi Tim,

    You say:

    We are dealing with a thermodynmanic cycle.(sic, leave that typo).

    Brilliant! I think that characterises this whole discussion.

    [ This was a typo, honest! –Tim ]

  29. Q. Daniels says:

    br1 wrote:
    Can you expand on this, please? Why would there be no thermodynamic limit in this case, or why it would not apply?

    In general, there is no thermodynamic limit for systems under gravity. Consider what happens if n goes to infinity. Your entire system becomes something very different.

    Regarding Velasco, as I see it, VWR make a possibly incorrect assumption that there exists a general solution for the micro-canonical ensemble. If Graeff’s results are valid (and I think they are), then the GLR is greater than the DALR, which means that convection will always be active. If convection is always active, then the actual profile depends on the size and geometry of the container, and there is no general solution. If there is no general solution, then any general solution which is ‘found’ is already wrong. It’s finding something which doesn’t actually exist.

    There’s another way of phrasing it, which is that there is an assumption of some kind of steady-state in which there is no constant flow. I can demonstrate that this is not a valid assumption in heterostructure semiconductors (pat pend). The easiest example is in AlGaAs across x=0.43, where it transitions from a direct to indirect semiconductor. At some point I plan to share more detail here.

  30. br1 says:

    David Socrates:
    “If in that scenario you describe heat is flowing in from the surrounding ambient heat bath, then that is wher ethe enegy to run the heat engine is coming from – the Sun!”

    Not in this case. A ‘heat bath’ is taken as a theoretical construct of infinite capacity, and when a system comes to equilibrium with it then no further work should be possible. In principle if Graeff’s result holds one could extract work from the 3K cosmic background radiation and there would be no heat death. Sounds nice!

  31. br1 says:

    Q. Daniels:

    Interesting post! I’d like to hear about the AlGaAs idea too. If you say a patent is pending, then is it already publicly available?

  32. Quantum Physicist says:

    In response to David S, here we go again decoupling gravity from magnetism..big big blunder. Problem is you have a warped time-space continuum on the scale of process which causes problems for the second law. It’s not violated here but you have to understand what you’re measuring and how to compile forces of energy, whatever they may be.

    I wasn’t aware that I had blundered by de-coupling gravity from magnetism, or that it has been coupled in the first place.

    Nor did I know that I have a warped space-tme continuum on the scale of process.

    I am all ears.

    What the heck are you talking about?

  33. Trick says:

    Tim F 4:29pm: “I maintain (in accordance with all of classical thermodynamics, including the ideal gas law) that the temperature will eventually equilibrate with no gradient. Graeff’s experiments would seem to contradict my conclusion. It is certainly possible that classical thermodynamics is wrong about this.”

    Classic soln. is NOT wrong. The T gradient being constant (isothermal) IS the classical solution with & without gravity & IS correct for an open adiabatic column. Changing the constraints from classic open adiabatic soln. to closed adiabatic though is THE big deal that drives the ideal closed gradient solution to non-isothermal (no work on surroundings allowed). Thus Graeff will find no exp. contradiction (esp. if he loses the powder).

    The thermo grandmasters found the isothermal exact classical solution you note correctly even with gravity present when they assumed the column (or similar Graeff experiment) could do work on its surroundings but not exchange heat with surroundings (adiabatic). That external work was exactly equal to the molecule’s work (m*g*h) climbing & descending in the gravity field (in the general gas enthalpy field integral over any general height) thus they cancel.

    You just have to watch the column constraints very closely. In Graeff’s experiment, there is so little work done on the surroundings it can be easily ignored & so the constraints change from the open constraints that the classical guys solved to closed constraints that they did not solve. And thus, with proper math constraints invoked along with Law 1 and Law 2 for one heat reservoir, the closed ideal exact solution was found recently & changes to non-isothermal, very elegantly.

    Why recently?

    Some answers come from a book suggestion by Tallbloke I just finished: “The Tragicomic History of Thermodynamics 1822-1854” by Truesdell (1980). This book details for us in those years that the thermo-physics masters were always behind the curve of the much faster advances in differential and integral calculus. Because of that the thermo masters study of whichever heat flow problem they wrestled was reduced down to whatever level of math understanding they had achieved (not all the same level of course – Clausius is cited as among the most advanced understanding & correct implementation of math).

    In reading & quoting from the exact original papers, Truesdell points out comical errors. It is a good read, all those guys really were human (not mistake proof – even in famous papers). And what we now call blog ethics & politics were all there too amongst the early thermo writers. Even trolls existed (ever hear of Reech? I had not – at least that I recalled – he was treated as a troll though he knew some answers before the masters).

    When the constraints change from classic open adiabatic column to an enclosed adiabatic column, the math becomes particularly difficult and THAT is why the closed soln. math escaped the classic grandmasters: the solution changes to non-isothermal. Thus the closed solution under gravity was passed down by them as a paradox (they knew there was an energy & entropy problem but could not math it out).

    Physics eventually caught up with the math advances (or swallowed pride and went over to the math dept. to ask) and the original paradox was eventually solved explicitly. The non-isothermal solution is now well known and accepted by experts in the thermo-physics community. Posters have been quoting (over & over & OVER, sigh) some of the relevant recent papers & texts in the threads here and at WUWT.

    I know I do need an editor…no volunteers though.

  34. Q. Daniels says:

    David Socrates wrote:
    9. No violation of the 1st Law (“energy is always conserved”) or of the 2nd Law (“heat flows from hot to cold”) has occurred

    I presume there is no violation of the First Law. I have seen no suggestion that it might be violated, and would be highly skeptical of any such suggestion.

    It does appear to me that Graeff’s device violates the particular phrasing of the Second Law that you used here. There appears to be a leakage of heat into the top (from the warmer exterior) and out the bottom (to the cooler exterior). In spite of this leakage, the gradient is established and maintained. Conservation of energy requires that the device move heat from the cooler top to the warmer bottom.

  35. kuhnkat says:

    David Socrates,

    the only howler here is saying there can be a force that does no work.

    But hey, I guess current Cosmology needs to be tossed out anyway. No gravity crushing things into neutron stars, black holes, and firing off fusion in new stars etc.

    Take a 1 pound weight and hold it directly out to your side and let us know how long you can hold it against this force that does no work.

    “In a gravitational field, the force due to gravity doesn’t change significantly in strength as you move upwards away from the Earth.”

    So that inverse law I heerd about is bunkum too?? Apparently you are limiting your upward movement severely or is this that relativiy I hear about? 8>)

  36. Q. Daniels says:

    Tim Folkerts:
    I think you see the question correctly.

    br1:
    Yes, but I’m not ready to share the relevant search terms. I’ve still got a notion of “flying under the radar”, but that is expiring.

    I have another formulation for the limits to the Second Law:

    The Second Law holds for thermodynamic systems of n particles with no more than 2 independent extensive variables.

    The short-form explanation for this is that any thermodynamic system with 2 independent extensive variables, the independent variables S and T can always fully describe the system. For systems fully described by S and T, the optimal efficiency is the rectangular cycle known as the Carnot Cycle.

    Now, the alternative:

    Let’s now consider a generalized form of Graeff’s work, where T is some function of a base temperature T0 and height z. This gives us P*V = n*R*T(T0, z), with the extensive variables P, V, T0 and z. As noted (correctly, IMO) by Maxwell in Theory of Heat, this would contradict the Second Law. We can build a heat engine which varies P, V and z with a constant T0, which extracts energy from a bath at T0.

    Next, the Intrinsic Concentration for carriers in semiconductors, ni^2 = n*p = C*T^3*exp(-Eg/kbT). In this equation, C is material-specific. In heterostructure devices, this can be used as a degree of freedom, giving us the extensive variables n, p, C and T. (pat pend)

  37. br1 says:

    Trick:

    Hello again.

    To everyone else: I promise not to start a mega-discussion on this thread. However, I feel that one refutation per thread may be permissible.

    Trick said:
    “Changing the constraints from classic open adiabatic soln. to closed adiabatic though is THE big deal that drives the ideal closed gradient solution to non-isothermal (no work on surroundings allowed).”
    no. Verkley addresses a closed adiabatic system in sentence two of his *introduction*. He gives the solution in sentence three of the introduction – it is isothermal.

    While I’m happy to discuss other issues with you, it’s probably only fair that we don’t continue this one on every thread, so you may reply how you please, and I’ll continue to discuss the other issues that arise.

  38. Q. Daniels says:

    I looked again at the last thing I wrote. The wording is sloppy still.

    It’s getting closer to English, but it’s still not there yet.

  39. Trick says:

    br1 10:32am – In sentence 2 and 3 of Verkley paper intro., the classic system being discussed is closed to heat but an open system for work. So classic soln. is isothermal constant T field; allowed to do work on the surroundings to counteract the work of the molecules moving in the gravity field. This conserves energy (i.e. gas enthalpy conserved).

    Remember Gibbs’ constraints are important.

  40. Q. Daniels says:

    David Socrates wrote:

    9. No violation of the 1st Law (“energy is always conserved”) or of the 2nd Law (“heat flows from hot to cold”) has occurred…>

    It does appear to me that Graeff’s device violates the particular phrasing of the Second Law that you used here. There appears to be a leakage of heat into the top (from the warmer exterior) and out the bottom (to the cooler exterior). In spite of this leakage, the gradient is established and maintained. Conservation of energy requires that the device move heat from the cooler top to the warmer bottom

    You have correctly copied the last Step 9 in my analysis but apparently failed to notice my Step 1, namely:

    1. The starting point of the “Graeff effect” theory is that the column of air is perfectly isolated (“no exchange of matter and energy across its borders”).

    So in the situation I was discussing there was no leakage of heat at all from or to the environment. That was the whole point of my analysis – to show Lucy that with Graeff’s theoretical assumptions (the subject of Lucy’s current article) it would not be possible to run a perpetuum mobile because of the strictly limited amount of energy trapped inside the system.

    “Perpetuum” is Latin for “for ever”.

  41. kuhnkat says:

    David Socrates, the only howler here is saying there can be a force that does no work.

    I think we are sadly into the territory of sophistry here…

    An unbalanced force does work. A balanced force does no work. A brick in the wall of my house does no work because the force on it due to gravity is balanced by the bricks below. Otherwise I would be able to harness the brick to do work for me, thus perhaps saving on my electricity bills.

    Come to think of it, what a scam. I may go into business…there seem to be a lot of gullible people about.

  42. kuhnkat says:

    “In a gravitational field, the force due to gravity doesn’t change significantly in strength as you move upwards away from the Earth.”

    So that inverse law I heerd about is bunkum too?? Apparently you are limiting your upward movement severely or is this that relativiy I hear about?

    As you well know, my comment was in the context of comparity gravity with the change in ‘artifical gravity’ created as you move out from the centre of a centrifuge, where it is zero, to the outermost part of the rotating arm, where it is at its maximum.

    The centrifuge does not mimic at all well the gravity profile in the Earth’s atmosphere where g, the acceleration due to gravity, varies hardly at all between the ground and the tropopause (say 15km up). In fact it varies only by 0.09% at the equator or by -0.33% at the poles.

    I always think that smart jokey comments make the perpetrator look so foolish when they fall flat. Don’t you?

  43. Tim Folkerts says:

    Trick says: “Changing the constraints from classic open adiabatic soln. to closed adiabatic though is THE big deal that drives the ideal closed gradient solution to non-isothermal … ”

    I still disagree with you. Consider this thought experiment. Take an open adiabatic container (which I suppose means infinitely tall, but insulated on the sides), which you seem to agree will settle into an equilibrium state with no temperature gradient and no bulk motion of the gas. Now gently slip a thin divider into the column. The gas really doesn’t “know” or “care” that the divider is there. The bulk motion of the gas doesn’t change. The pressure doesn’t change. Not work is done. No heat is added.

    Why should a temperature gradient suddenly develop? Will only the bottom (close) part have a gradient? What if the divider is sort of flexible, rather than completely rigid?

    Every time I look at the principles and the equations, I come to the conclusion that isothermal is the solution whether or not the container has a top on it.

    (The ONE exception I have seen is a paper looking at small numbers of particles far from the thermodynamic limit. When the number of particles is small, the paper concludes that the gas will indeed have a gradient. But even a ‘relatively small’ number of particles (eg 1 mole) is more than enough to make there result indistinguishable from isothermal.)

  44. Q. Daniels says:

    David Socrates wrote:
    So in the situation I was discussing there was no leakage of heat at all from or to the environment. That was the whole point of my analysis – to show Lucy that with Graeff’s theoretical assumptions (the subject of Lucy’s current article) it would not be possible to run a perpetuum mobile because of the strictly limited amount of energy trapped inside the system.

    Part of the problem is that there are two distinct flavors of perpetuum mobile, based on which Law of Thermodynamics they would violate.

    PM1 would violate the First Law of Thermodynamics. It seems to me that PM1 is what your 9 steps are rejecting. It’s not what Graeff is after. I’ll note that Nuclear Power violates the original formulation of the First Law of Thermodynamics, but not our updated understanding of Conservation of Mass-Energy.

    PM2 would violate the Second Law, which is what Graeff and I have been pursuing. This is a very different set of criteria from PM1. To qualify for PM2, a device would need to either extract energy from a bath of uniform temperature, or move heat from cold to hot without consuming the device itself. This is called perpetuum mobile on the theory that all such energy extracted will eventually be turned back into heat.

  45. Trick says:

    David Socrates 7:49pm –

    “Step 1: The starting point of the “Graeff effect” theory is that the column of air is perfectly isolated (“no exchange of matter and energy across its borders”).”

    “Step 3: If we attach a heat engine between its hotter and colder ends, we all agree that the engine will transform a proportion of that heat into work (depending on its efficiency).”

    Your step 3 violates step 1, right? e.g. step 3 is a device connected to get energy to flow out of the system. If so, think about writing step 3 so it obeys step 1. What then?

    Note current step 3 is like OTEC in the deep sea which can run a very inefficient heat engine so we choose not to actually follow thru with construction.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ocean_thermal_energy_conversion

  46. Q. Daniels says:

    Tim Folkerts wrote:
    (The ONE exception I have seen is a paper looking at small numbers of particles far from the thermodynamic limit. When the number of particles is small, the paper concludes that the gas will indeed have a gradient. But even a ‘relatively small’ number of particles (eg 1 mole) is more than enough to make there result indistinguishable from isothermal.)

    Perhaps this is relevant.

    It could be argued that Graeff has assembled a very large number of systems, each with a small number of particles. If I’m understanding correctly, the beads Graeff used have diameters on the order of a micron, and possibly smaller.

  47. Trick says:

    Tim F 6:19pm – “..slip a thin divider into the column..”

    From your context I think you mean somewhere in z a rigid divider changes the adiabatic column into two adiabatic parts, one open constraint on top so that work can be done on the surroundings and one closed constraint so no work on the surroundings for the bottom part. Gravity constant for both.

    Do you see this constraint changes the enthalpy integration from:

    Integration over top half: H = ½ mv^2 + mgh + P(of the column&environment)*V

    Integration over bottom half: H = 1/2mv^2 + mgh + 0

    And that makes all the difference. Get isothermal for top and non-isothermal for bottom.

    Here the top half does work on the environment, get the classic solution. The bottom half does 0 work on the environment, the math gets more tedious (it stumped the grandmasters) but a recent exact non-isothermal solution has been found and supported by several informed, critical authors where no work is allowed on the environment like Graeff’s experiment B74 (sans the powder).

    Tim F asks:

    Q: “Why should a temperature gradient suddenly develop?”

    A: From the difference in ideal gas enthalpy as shown above on the way to LTE.

    Q: “Will only the bottom (close) part have a gradient?”

    A: Yes at LTE. Since the divider is specified adiabatic (no heat flow) & rigid (no pressure communication).

    Q: “What if the divider is sort of flexible, rather than completely rigid?”

    A: Well, then at LTE the bottom half has some sort of non-zero work function on the environment. I am going to guess it would have a gradient diminished from orig. bottom part but non-zero as some work is allowed out but not all the work needed goes out due to whatever “flexible” specification.

  48. Tim Folkerts says:

    Q Daniels says “Perhaps this is relevant;”

    I don’t think so. I don’t have the link handy to the paper, but it was discussing small numbers of particles AND freedom to move up to high altitudes (ie mgh ~ kT, which would be several km high). I don’t think their analysis would even apply to particles fixed within a solid.

  49. Q. Daniels says:

    To qualify for PM2, a device would need to either extract energy from a bath of uniform temperature, or move heat from cold to hot without consuming the device itself. This is called perpetuum mobile on the theory that all such energy extracted will eventually be turned back into heat.

    Right well off you go then. Show us all in meticulously clear language how in Graeff’s experiment a device could “qualify for PM2”.

    My understanding of 2LT is that it says that heat flows from hot to cold and not vice versa. I’m sorry if that is too simplistic for you and the other sophisticates hanging out here.

    In what I wrote to Lucy (July 2, 2012 at 7:49 pm) I simply pointed out that there was a limited amount of energy in the column (assuming it is genuinely totally isolated from the environment) so a heat engine, connected between hot and cold ends would eventually run out of energy, thus rendering the mobile very decidedly non perpetuum!!

    Notice that my heat engine, as described, moves heat from hot to cold and not from cold to hot. So it does not “qualify” for being a PM. Excellent, why should it? It’s my heat engine not yours. I am not trying to prove that a PM is possible within Graeffs’s setup. I am just waiting for someone to explain in crystal clear scientific language what exactly it is about Graeff’s work that is meant to be violating (or if you prefer requiring “modification” to) the 2LT.

  50. Trick says:

    “Step 1: The starting point of the “Graeff effect” theory is that the column of air is perfectly isolated (“no exchange of matter and energy across its borders”).”

    “Step 3: If we attach a heat engine between its hotter and colder ends, we all agree that the engine will transform a proportion of that heat into work (depending on its efficiency).”

    Your step 3 violates step 1, right? e.g. step 3 is a device connected to get energy to flow out of the system. If so, think about writing step 3 so it obeys step 1. What then?

    Sorry, I should been more precise and said “perfectly isolated from the outer environment” – not from the heat engine itself for obvious reasons! A heat engine must be contained within the environment that contains both its heat source and its heat sink. Just like Stevenson’s Rocket is a heat engine that exists within the environment that contains its heat source (the fire) and its heat sink (the air).

  51. Oops, Stephenson’s Rocket !!

  52. Tim Folkerts says:

    Every time I look at the principles and the equations, I come to the conclusion that isothermal is the

    solution whether or not the container has a top on it.

    1. I agree completely that having or not having a lid on an infinitely long column cannot in logic or physical reality make any difference to the temperatre gradient. I do not understand how anybody could maintain that it could.

    2. I disagree that the column will necessarily be isothermal if in a gravitational field. I take it you are not a fan of the Ideal Gas Law? If we imagine a 1 metre square atmospheric column stretching from the Earth’s surface to outer space, are you suggesting that the temperature at ground level would be the same as the temperature at, say 5000m ? Although an imaginary column is hardly an example of a closed system (!!) it is arguable that the horizontal components of the energy flows in and out, if integrated over the whole of the atmospheric shell would, by definition, balance out.

    The Ideal Gas Law tells us that a cubic metre of air at the bottom of this column would be hotter than a cubic metre at, say, 5000m. Same volume, very different pressure, density and therefore temperature. Even if you couldn’t draw any precise conclusion about the temperature profile in the column, doesn’t isothermal seem just a tad unlikely?

  53. Trick says:

    David Socrates 11:49pm –

    “1. I agree completely that having or not having a lid on an infinitely long column cannot in logic or physical reality make any difference to the temperature gradient. I do not understand how anybody could maintain that it could.”

    Graeff’s column is certainly not infinite! To keep things ideal for the experimental theory, need to consider a column height limited to the troposphere from 1000 hPa up to height where p~200 hPa (80% of atmosphere is mainly of interest). Above that height, the molecular level craziness dominates and that is not ideal gas.

    Since you don’t understand, you must have missed the recent literature which elegantly shows the lid constraints DO matter as to whether there is a top or no top because work gets across the top if it is open (not heat just work). There is no work let in/out if the top is closed. And that changes the ideal gas enthalpy integral which changes the tedious solution from classic isothermal to non-isothermal.

    To “understand how anybody could maintain that (the constraints matter)” just catch up with the recent papers & texts quoted around here.

    David continues: “ 2…..it is arguable that the horizontal components of the energy flows in and out,” but also says “Sorry, I should been more precise and said “perfectly isolated from the outer environment”…

    Yes, preciseness matters here, there is no energy flowing in or out when the lid is closed (no horizontal in/out). That’s the assumption of an adiabatic, enclosed column & Graeff’s experimental set up B74 as related by Lucy. No energy, i.e. no work in or out with closed lid – non-isothermal solution prevails. Open the lid and energy i.e. work can flow in/out – isothermal constant T classic solution prevails. This is really pretty cool & elegant. The difference in T is only on the order of ~20-30K out of 288K at surface.

    And this is all ideal, the real standard atmosphere (1000 hPa to 200 hPa) lies in between these two ideal solutions once all the non-ideal real physics is unleashed upon PV=nRT.

  54. kuhnkat says:

    David Socrates,

    so, when I place a ball into the air, and gravity ACCELERATES it toward the center of gravity, no WORK is being done???

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH

    yes, the jokes DO reflect on the joker no matter how poor he or she is. Snicker.

    [ please don’t push –mod]

  55. kuhnkat says:

    OK David, I intuit you are one of those who love thought experiments. Try this one.

    Only two objects exist in an area close enough to affect each other through gravity at a noticeable level during the duration of our experiment. Initially they are at rest to each other. Over time the gravity of the objects draw them together (we do agree on this??). As I noted above these objects are accelerating toward each other due to the force of gravity. That means they have a change in velocity that represents a gain in momentum. Yet, you claim that this gain in momentum does not represent work done.

    Would you please explain why this is NOT work done as we would have to do work to return these objects to their starting points

    Your silly definition is a typical strained explanation that simply sets aside our frustration with reality. The FACT that we cannot figure out how to utilize the force involved in no way can be interpreted as it not doing work. Your brick adds its mass to the wall. If the engineer has not computed his stresses correctly the bricks and/or mortar will crumble. What?? No work was done yet the molecular structure of the wall was disrupted to the point of failure?

    [ keep it cool ]

  56. Q. Daniels says:

    David Socrates wrote:
    Right well off you go then. Show us all in meticulously clear language how in Graeff’s experiment a device could “qualify for PM2″.

    Meticulously clear language isn’t really within my skill-set, but I can try.

    I’m sorry if that is too simplistic for you and the other sophisticates hanging out here.

    Simple and straightforward is good.

    My understanding of 2LT is that it says that heat flows from hot to cold and not vice versa.

    Right. As I said above:
    It does appear to me that Graeff’s device violates the particular phrasing of the Second Law that you used here. There appears to be a leakage of heat into the top (from the warmer exterior) and out the bottom (to the cooler exterior). In spite of this leakage, the gradient is established and maintained. Conservation of energy requires that the device move heat from the cooler top to the warmer bottom.

    It might work better if you drew that as described, and labeled the regions. Of particular interest are “interior top” and “interior bottom”. Label the temperatures as indicated above, and trace the heat flows through the imperfect insulation, while (for now) ignoring the heat flow within the device. In spite of the heat flows, the gradient is established and maintained, so heat must be flowing from the cooler top to the warmer bottom.

    If you need me to do drawings explaining that, I can.

  57. Trick says:
    July 4, 2012 at 12:57 am

    David Socrates 11:49pm…..

    I think you simply misunderstood what I said, or else perhaps I didn’t explain clearly enough.

    1. When referring to an infinitely long column of air, I was referring to an infinitely long coumn of air – with perfect surrounding insulation (no leakage whatsoever) but with the top end open. Certainly not to a column of air less than a metre long with less-than-perfect insulation. Since there would be no molecules at the top of an infinitely long column (by the definition ‘infinitely long’) it is difficult to see how having a top on or off would make any difference. I thought that is what Tim Folkerts had said and I was simply agreeing with him. But I do agee with you that a perfectly insulated column even several thousand metres long would have a different temperature profile depending on whether or not it had a top on it.

    2. The second point I was making was about a conceptual 1 metre square column of air in the real atmosphere. I actually said “Although an imaginary column is hardly a closed system (!!)…etc.” so I wasn’t trying to compare it with the perfectly insulated column of my first point. At the end of the paragraph I made it clear that one “couldn’t draw any precise conclusion” … “but doesn’t isothermal seem a tad unlikely?”. It was a speculation based on the real world, how the atmosphere behaves in practice – very far from isothermal. I agree that my comment was no proof one way or the other. Just an attempt at a speculative reality check!

  58. Sorry for short break, will pick up the discussion presently, one by one!

    David Socrates: for the third time of asking, what is wrong with the following rationale?

    first thoughts in response. Sorry if you felt I was “shouting” at you, it was not meant. So often semantics get in the way. You seem to have posted a new sequence of ideas for me to answer. First, I am not at all sure that there is harvestable heat between the top and bottom, only enough to get a flicker on the thermocouples. Also, you have no experimental evidence that both top and bottom will get cooler. My reading of Graeff’s water experiment multi-graph is, that outside temperatures do indeed percolate right through to the inside, a little – but if there is enough insulation and thermal-equalization, it is small enough to allow the inside temperature gradient to appear and be maintained. IOW, heat can be obtained from the outside to maintain the temperature gradient.

    I notice your statement of the Second Law in another post involves words to the effect that heat always flows from hot to cold. Are you aware that there are lots of different statements of 2LoT, and my preferred sense is that 2LoT involves the notion of differences tending to level out into an equilibrium state. But from Graeff, I now understand that if that equilibrium state is in a vertical gravity field, and you start off with equal temperatures top and bottom, then heat WILL flow from cold to hot, just the tiny bit needed to re-establish the “gravitational” temperature gradient. And Graeff has done this experimentally, rotating the “inner axis” through 180 degrees, and discovering that the gradient would re-form in about a day.

    Hope this helps. If not, perhaps we need to talk on the phone so I can pick up where we are talking past each other.

  59. br1 says:

    Tim Folkerts:
    ” Take an open adiabatic container (which I suppose means infinitely tall, but insulated on the sides), which you seem to agree will settle into an equilibrium state with no temperature gradient and no bulk motion of the gas. Now gently slip a thin divider into the column. The gas really doesn’t “know” or “care” that the divider is there. The bulk motion of the gas doesn’t change. The pressure doesn’t change. Not work is done. No heat is added.

    Why should a temperature gradient suddenly develop?”

    All the physics papers I have read say a gradient shouldn’t develop. Take the paper by Verkley for example. When the divider is in place, then the lower section wil have fixed mass as the divider traps the gas. As the divider cannot move, then no work can be done by the lower column on the upper column and vice versa. If the divider is a thermal insulator, then no heat can be exchanged between the two column sections. In this case, it is very clear that the lower column has both fixed mass and fixed energy. These correspond to Verkley constraint 1 and constraint 2, which he says in the third sentence of the introduction give an isothermal solution. If the divider is allowed to ‘float’, then work can be exchanged between the upper and lower column sections, but so long as no heat can pass between them, then the lower column has fixed mass and fixed enthalpy. These correspond to Verkley constraint 1 and constraint 2′ (note the little prime on the 2 this time). In Verkley 2a he shows that this also gives an isothermal solution.

    If we take no winds in the column then there is no reason to invoke turbulence or heating, so Verkley 2b does not apply, and if 2b does not apply then 2c does not apply.

  60. Ray C says:

    Maybe, once gravity initiates a temperature differential the aerosols, microscopic or nanoscopic objects, (call them what you will) further drive the temperature change (or maybe they drive it initially). They undergo a permanent thermal motion. This motion is the result of the collisions with the fluid’s molecules and is typically modelled as driven by a white Gaussian noise. (or coloured noise!) The velocity of this motion can vary both in magnitude and sign, as observed in experiments. As a result, the particle moves either towards the cold or the hot side, quite similarly to what happens in the presence of an external driving force, e.g., gravity or electric fields; however, in this case, no external force is actually acting on the particles.
    http://arxiv.org/pdf/1205.1093v2.pdf
    Aerosols are always present in air

  61. tchannon says:

    Lucy,
    I found a couple of hours to start looking at Gräff, Roderich Wilhelm, Dr.-Ing.
    (Graef is ascii version)

    He is claiming “frei” energy. He is claiming energy from something to do with gravity and with a commercial intent proven by the presence of a patent document.

    “EP1333175 – Gravity prime mover”

    Gräff, Roderich Wilhelm, Dr.-Ing.
    Domagkweg 7
    78126 Königsfeld / DE

    Which refers/cites another patent document which makes intent clear.

    “A device, operating on a closed gas power cycle between an upper and a lower horizontal datum plane, being separated through a distance of enormous height; comprising the steady-flow compression and the cooling of a suitable gas at the upper datum plane, and its reheating, and power-producing expansion through a compressor matched turbine at the lower datum plane; gravitational downward attractive force which is acting on the steady within a conduit downward-flowing mass of compressed gas, produces increased weight, which, in turn, produces a gravity-generated, from the compressor discharge to the turbine inlet, a downwardly increasing gas pressure rise; the gravity-produced gas pressure rise produces in the compressed gas expansion at the lower datum plane a substantially greater amount of power than is consumed in the gas compression at the upper datum plane, thus resulting in a surplus generated power output.”
    http://worldwide.espacenet.com/publicationDetails/biblio?CC=US&NR=4221115&KC=&FT=E&locale=en_EP

    I have been unable to find his EU patent in English.

    First an autotranslation from a French description

    “The invention deals with the manufacture and operation of energy. It relates in particular to a method and devices for producing differences in body temperature gazéiformes, liquid or solid in closed systems under the influence of the force of gravity, and the use of these temperature differences for the production of usable energy. An element of different temperature, either a solid, liquid or gas is disposed vertically in a room surrounded by a housing. The chamber and the housing can be optionally filled with fibers, powder or small bodies, in order to minimize the influence of convection currents and thermal radiation. Under the influence of the force of gravity, the upper end of the element becomes colder different temperature and the lower end becomes warmer. With the aid of a thermal element, because of this temperature difference, it is possible to produce electric current, or using a heat exchanger, thermal currents can be collected at different temperatures from element of the different temperature.”
    http://www.patfr.com/200308/EP1333175.html

    The patent document as a PDF in German is off here
    http://www.freepatentsonline.com/EP1333175.html

    The US patent
    http://www.freepatentsonline.com/20030145883.pdf

    He has a couple of earlier patents on a different topic but might show his thinking.

  62. Tim Folkerts says:

    kuhnkat says: July 4, 2012 at 2:22 am
    “so, when I place a ball into the air, and gravity ACCELERATES it toward the center of gravity, no WORK is being done???

    You seem to be missing a key concept. No one (with a decent understanding of physics) doubts that when gravity causes the center of mass of two objects to move, that they are doing work on each other — that they are gaining KE at the expense of PE.

    So when I drop a ball into a box, gravity does work on it UNTIL it comes to rest on the bottom of the box, at which point no FURTHER work is done. If I continue and drop 100 balls, each will have work done until they all settle into the box, piled one on top of another. Then the stationary balls will experience no further work by gravity. I would have to lower the box to have gravity do further work on the balls.

    Similarly, Billions of years ago as the atmosphere was being assembled, work was done by gravity. But now that the atmosphere has pretty well stabilized, there is no new work being done. For gravity to keep doing work, the atmosphere would have to keep “getting lower” as a whole — the atmosphere would have to be getting continuously more compressed and closer to the surface.

  63. Tim Folkerts says:

    David Socrates says:
    At the end of the paragraph I made it clear that one “couldn’t draw any precise conclusion” … “but doesn’t isothermal seem a tad unlikely?”. It was a speculation based on the real world, how the atmosphere behaves in practice – very far from isothermal.

    The real atmosphere has a gradient because it is heated rather vigorously at the bottom (by contact with the sunlight-heated ground) and cooled rather vigorously at the top (by IR radiation to space). So of course the real atmosphere has a temperature gradient. Take away that differential heating/cooling and all of a sudden an isothermal profile doesn’t seem even a tad unlikely for a truly isolated. insulated column of air.

  64. Tim
    Re. Patents. Graeff devotes a whole chapter in his book to discussing how and why he got into patents and what it did do and didn’t do and how he was wondering how he was going to get an idea through the patents office that appeared to contradict a known law and was it even worth it but sometimes it was just fun and you had to get your name in by a certain time and… so on.

    He’s been an engineer, inventor and manufacturer all his life, so he thinks easily in such terms. Yes, he talks about building a “gravity machine” to actually produce usable energy, but at this point in time it seems to me a million miles away from making into a reality… but so did silicon chips once, and electricity must have felt a million miles away before that – until Tesla and Edison.

    He’s not out to make a buck, at 84. But he does care passionately on anything he can do to pave the way to obtaining energy for living that comes from a sustainable source ie not fossil fuels over which wars get fought. Freeing one’s thinking, thinking outside the box, yet staying connected to practical experiments, tests, machines, purposes, is important for this. That’s what I see as his most important contribution to Science.

    Hope this helps.

  65. Jason Calley says: July 2, 2012 at 5:45 pm

    One would think that a very high speed centrifuge (perhaps in a nice vacuum chamber such as any well supplied home would possess) would have a temperature gradient much easier to detect and reliably reproduce.

    Graeff describes working with the Hilsch vortex tube in his book as an example of things in his life that inspired or seemed to preview his later interest.

    Professor Chuanping Liao appears to have done tests with a centrifuge – but Graeff, although I know he’s interested in what a centrifuge could do, said Liao had not indicated whether the inner temperature gradient he measured was surrounded by a positive one – and this is the significant part that points to gravity being the cause.

  66. Tim Folkerts says:

    David Socrates says: I take it you are not a fan of the Ideal Gas Law?
    Nothing could be further from the truth. The Ideal Gas Law is a GREAT little idealized equation that does a remarkably good job of describing real gases in a wide variety of situations.

    The Ideal Gas Law tells us that a cubic metre of air at the bottom of this column would be hotter than a cubic metre at, say, 5000m. Same volume, very different pressure, density and therefore temperature. Even if you couldn’t draw any precise conclusion about the temperature profile in the column, doesn’t isothermal seem just a tad unlikely?

    No, the Ideal Gas Law does NOT tell you that!

    If you are specifically looking at 1 m^3, but are allowing the pressure and the number of particles present to change, then you can not really say anything about the expected temperature. It would be easy to adjust the pressure and density to achieve the same temperature. For example, I could have a 1 m^3 box with 1/2 as much pressure and 1/2 as many particles, and end up with the same temperature. The Ideal gas Law does not provide enough constraints by itself to uniquely determine the temperature.

    Take V_1 = 1 m^3 of ideal diatomic gas at T_1 = 300 K and P_1 =1 Atm. Let’s allow the gas to expand to V_2 = 2 m^3, by the following processes.

    * An adiabatic expansion, where the gas is thermally isolated from the surrounding. No heat is exchanged, but work is done. Then PV^(gamma=7/5) = constant and
    >> P_2 = 0.38 P_1 (pressure went down)
    >> T_2 = 0.76 T_1 (temperature went down)

    * An isothermal expansion, where the gas is in thermal contact with the surroundings. Heat is exchanged as work is done. Then T = constant and
    >> P_2 = 0.5 P_1
    >> T_2 = T_1

    * An adiabatic “free expansion”, where no heat is exchanged and no work is done. Then T = constant and
    >> P_2 = 0.5 P_1
    >> T_2 = T_1

    (Heck, I could even allow a “leak” (as you did), so that P & T are both constant, but n doubles. Or any combination of these so that that an infinite # of combination are possible)

    Many possible combinations of P, n & T are possible. You need MORE than the Ideal gas Law to know what the P, n, & T will be when you change the pressure! Isothermal is one solution that is entirely consistent with the Ideal Gas Law.

  67. tchannon says: July 2, 2012 at 2:46 pm

    A little while back another commenter at the Talkshop was saying things about mines so I checked material at the time until I felt I understood a bit. This paper says

    The observed temperature gradients within the mines range from 10 to 50 K/km

    and this fits in with what I now understand thanks to Graeff’s work, that in the free air we have a dynamic equilibrium between the pure gravitational temperature gradient (which he caught redhanded by suppressing convection), and convection which mostly offsets it but depends on the geometry of the space. In mines, convection is less free but not completely inhibited, so I would expect higher lapse rates – but the lapse rate is highly variable and in limestone (caves) it’s apparently hardly noticeable. The figures above are interesting in that the highest still does not exceed Graeff’s gravitational temperature gradient which is 70K/km – again as I would expect.

  68. Lucy,

    No problems. I am really enjoying the debate with you and also with the others. With one sad exception it has all been of the highest calibre. Well done TB for commissioning this work from you (and then disappearing off on holiday!)

    Conducting the debate in written form does have its difficulties but I think it is actually a great discipline. And in the kind of shambolic way that is typical of science, I think we are making real progress.

    The first thing to make clear to you is that my nine step scenario you refer to (David Socrates, July 2, 2012 at 7:49 pm) is theoretical. It does not refer to Graeff’s actual experimental setup. The reason I chose to speak theoretically rather than empirically is because I was responding to the fact that this, your third article, is about Graeff’s theory. So everything I said in that posting and everything I now say below is about his theory, not about his experiment. OK?

    I didn’t say so in my previous posting, because I thought it was too obvious (big mistake!), but the starting assumption for my nine step scenario is that Graeff’s theory is correct. So I am not trying to prove Graeff’s theory wrong (as some here have thought).On the contrary, I am assuming here that it is correct. What I am then attempting to do is to show why the fact that it is correct does not then demand a “modification” of any kind to any of the Laws of Thermodynamics. OK?

    Right. Well here goes then…

    In my thought experiment, the column is perfectly insulated from its environment (Step 1). In such circumstances there is no coupling whatsoever between the temperature inside the column and the temperature in the outer environment. So for all intents and purposes the thought experiment’s apparatus and the outer environment might as well be in two different universes. So please forget all about the outer environment.

    Now, under such theoretical circumstances, if the heat engine extracts an increment of heat from the column, and (as suggested in Step 4 by way of example) transfers that energy into chemical energy in a rechargeable battery, two things will happen:

    (1) The average temperature in the column will obviously go down by some increment because the average energy contained in the column has gone down.

    (2) If Graeff is right, the column will now reorganise itself so as to maintain the negative temperature differential between bottom and top.

    Taking (1) and (2) together I think you will have to agree that the temperatures at both ends of the column must both be less than they were before the increment of heat was extracted by the heat engine.

    As the heat engine continues to run, taking increment after increment of heat from the hot end and discharging (smaller) increments of heat to the cold end (the difference at each step being transformed into work), this process will continue on with both temperatures being progressively reduced for the reasons explained above. This means that the heat engine will be getting slower and slower. Until eventually (and remember this is a theoretical discussion so I am free to assume the air doesn’t liquify or solidify!) the temperatures will reach absolute zero and the engine will stop.

    All I ask is for someone to explain how the above described theoretical scenario violates any of the Laws of Thermodynamics. If it does not then we do not have to “modify” them in any way even though we have assumed Graeff’s theory to be correct.

    It obviously doesn’t violate the 1st Law because a (portion of) the energy originally in the column is simply transferred to another form and another place: the chemical energy stored in the battery.

    It obviously doesn’t violate the 2nd Law because at no time does the heat engine extract heat from a colder source and transfer it to a hotter sink.

    So far OK?

    There is one final issue to discuss. What happens inside the column of air while the heat pump is running. The heat pump is extracting heat from a higher temperature source (in this case the bottom of the column), transforming a portion of it to work (generating electricity in my example), and discharging the remainder of the heat to the lower temperature sink (in this case the top of the column).

    Now that action disturbs the distribution of heat from what we might call the ‘optimal Graeff negative temperature distribution’ because there will now be more cold molecules towards the bottom than there should be, and more hot molecules towards the top than there should be. So, according to the Graeff theory, the column will now re-stablise itself optimally in the gravitational field. The heat engine then extracts another heat increment from the hot end of the column. And so on and on. The heat extraction process continues until all the energy in the column has been used up and then the heat engine stops.

    Not to be beaten, at this juncture you may (grasping at straws!) say: Aha! So gravity after all must be more than a force because it is energetically reorganising the temperature profile in the column to keep it at the ‘optimal Graeff negative temperature distribution’ and that requires work to be done. So it does. But that does not come from gravity which merely provides a static force that statistically speaking attracts more molecules towards the bottom with fewer molecules remaining towards the top. So it turns out that it is the energy of the molecules that reorganises the temperature profile according to the requirements of the fixed gravitational force. And when there is none of that energy left, the heat engine stops.

    I rest my case.

  69. Tim Folkerts says:

    Lucy Skywalker says:

    “The observed temperature gradients within the mines range from 10 to 50 K/km”
    and this fits in with what I now understand thanks to Graeff’s work …

    The earth’s crust has a temperature gradient because it is heating from below (nuclear decay, hot mantle) and cooled from above (conduction atmosphere, radiation to space). This is VERY different from Graeff’s experiments, were he carefull tried to avoid any such differential heating. Graeff’s results would have almost nothing to do with the earth’s temperature gradient.

    If we took a cold rock the size of earth and put it in earth’s atmosphere, it would have the opposite gradient — warm on the surface & cool below. This is also similar to what happens in the oceans. Cold water from the poles dives down to the bottom, where it travels around the world (warming only a little on the trip). This over-powers any potential Graeff effect, creating a “reversed” temperature gradient.

    All of these gradients are easily explained by simple, direct heating and cooling; conduction & convection. All of these have basically nothing to do with Graeff’s highly insulated conditions with (approximately) no heating, no cooling, and no convection!

  70. Tim Folkerts says:

    David says:
    “It obviously doesn’t violate the 1st Law because a (portion of) the energy originally in the column is simply transferred to another form and another place: the chemical energy stored in the battery.

    It obviously doesn’t violate the 2nd Law because at no time does the heat engine extract heat from a colder source and transfer it to a hotter sink.”

    A more fundamental statement of the 2nd law says entropy must stay the same or increase. Entropy in your system is decreasing, so you ARE violating this law.

    Furthermore, you are violating the 0th law, because you are postulating that the top and bottom are in equilibrium, but are at different temperatures.

    Yes, it is possible that either or both of these laws are flawed, but I am not holding my breath on that option.

  71. Q. Daniels says:

    David Socrates wrote:
    In my thought experiment, the column is perfectly insulated from its environment (Step 1).

    Spherical cow.

    Right here, you’re constructing an irrelvant case. This is a PM1 type constraint.

    PM2 will shut down under these circumstances. By definition, PM2 obeys conservation of energy.

    I’ll say that again.

    If you use a PM2 device to extract energy from an isolated device, it will eventually go into thermal shutdown. This does not mean it’s not PM2, it means it’s not PM1.

  72. Tim,

    I think that is a really good qualitative riposete…to my qualitative riposte.

    What I like about the position we have reached on this matter is that neither your position nor mine, nor any position in between, requires either of us to re-write the Laws of Thermodynamics.

    Phew!

  73. Trick says:

    David Socrates 7/2 7:49 –

    Step “3. If we attach a heat engine between its hotter and colder ends, we all agree that the engine will transform a proportion of that heat into work (depending on its efficiency).
    Step “4. What happens to that work? Let’s suppose it is used to generate electricity which is stored in a battery.”

    Trick was NOT one of the “all”, I only agree any heat engine attached thusly will run until LTE. Then it stops. Cite 2nd law.

    David Socrates 7/4 6:15pm: “..if the heat engine extracts an increment of heat from the column, and (as suggested in Step 4 by way of example) transfers that energy into chemical energy in a rechargeable battery..”

    After LTE this heat engine cannot operate cite Carnot et. al. The column entropy is maximum at LTE, heat can no longer be made to flow continuously unless outside energy from David’s 2nd different universe is used up to do so.

    Or maybe there is a hidden can of gas to make heat thereby powering an engine for the battery charging device. If so, gotta’ account for that can of energy. Even then, when gas runs out you can discharge the battery for awhile but eventually in your one adiabatic, closed universe, heat flow death happens again non-isothermally at LTE (only on avg. a little hotter now & w/exhaust fumes, LOL).

    I have observed many posters have trouble with the one heat reservoir issue. There is NOT a hot reservoir and a cold reservoir (from which you COULD make work!) – there is only ONE heat reservoir in the column. Thus at LTE (mathematical entropy max.) heat ceases to flow even though a thermometer will read a varying T(z) field. (NB: Some random perturbations (convection!) cancel each other out of course.)

    I just read Carnot wrote one of the earliest statements of the 2nd law (though he did not know it as an entropy law i.e. ~1820 entropy theory wasn’t invented yet) to the effect that a cyclic process could not produce work at LTE in the adiabatic column. I gave back my copy of Truesdell – the exact quote is in there from Carnot’s original (translated) manuscript.

    Oh! those Carnot cyclic diagrams on P & V vs. T, brought back an instant headache. Cannot stand those things, they say so much in so little space. You can study them for hours and STILL not get ‘em all, I cite as evidence these blogs.

    Bottom line: There is no rewrite of the thermo laws needed, they will survive the Graeff test in current form.

    Graeff’s experiment (B74 w/no powder) will have one heat reservoir at LTE, colder at top than bottom (T(z) = T0 * ((P(z)/P0)^k) proven by tedious recent application of thermo theory until the ambient heat bath from David’s 2nd different universe (Graeff’s basement w/hot coffee cup on top) starts to arrive through the non-ideal insulation.

  74. tchannon says:

    We will have to disagree on the mines. That is a maths work without data, links are dead, contains some very odd statements. Working mines and deep mines are irrelevant.
    Claims the air pressure went up when the foot of a mine was cooled.

  75. Trick says:

    Tim F 6:57pm – “Entropy in (David’s) system is decreasing…”

    Agree – from the disorder of a heat reservoir to the more ordered chemical battery charge. Can only ideally heat the column from the battery then recharge the battery from the heat but cannot get work out of that cycle cite Carnot.

    Tim continues: “Furthermore, you are violating the 0th law, because you are postulating that the top and bottom are in equilibrium, but are at different temperatures.”

    No. This is the difficulty many posters have (and the grandmasters had) & cannot “see” beyond – even now given the recent papers/texts. Strictly speaking, the 0th law has three heat reservoirs and the grandmasters found that necessary for a reason. They just could not find a law applicable to ONE heat reservoir. A T(z) field in the enclosed, adiabatic Graeff container or ideal tall air column, does not violate the 0th law or any thermo law at LTE. There is no heat flow.

    I do get that the stratified T field leads one to form an opinion from conduction in solids that heat must flow, but heat does not flow in the one reservoir at LTE T(z) given the gas obeys the ideal gas law, 1st, 2nd laws with 0th not applicable to that one heat reservoir.

  76. Tim Folkerts says:

    No, Trick. The 0th law was introduced because it is need to even define the concept of thermal equilibrium, and hence to define the concept of temperature. Without the 0th law, there is no way to say that two objects are the same temperature (and consequently, no way to say one object is warmer than another).

    How can I know that a 1 m tall column of air has come to thermal equilibrium? I can take that column of gas and (in my mind) divide it into 1 mm tall slices. If the column is indeed in equilibrium, then each 1 mm tall slice will be in thermal equilibrium with each adjacent slice (or else heat would flow until they WERE in equilibrium). How do we determine if two slices are indeed in equilibrium? We take another system (which we will call a “thermometer”) and let it equilibrate with one slice until it no longer changes. Then we will move the thermometer to another slice. If the thermometer changes, then the two slice were not in thermal.

    Once we can establish the concept of “thermal equilibrium”, then we can establish the concept of “same temperture”, and after that we can establish the concepts of “hotter” and “colder”.

    —————————————————————————————

    Anytime you use a thermometer to compare the temperature of two parts of a system, you have already “divided” the system in two, and introduced a third system (the thermometer). You have your 3 systems, and you ARE using the 0th law, whether you “see” it or not!

  77. Tim Folkerts says:

    Trick further says: “I do get that the stratified T field leads one to form an opinion from conduction in solids that heat must flow, but heat does not flow in the one reservoir at LTE T(z)”

    Don’t you see that this leads to a contradiction?

    Suppose that a thermal gradient is indeed the equilibrium condition for a column of gas (a “single reservoir”). Suppose that thermal gradient leads to a 1 K temperature change along a tall column of gas (and, to repeat, this is indeed the equilibrium condition). Now suppose you have a column of a DIFFERENT gas. If this column has a different gradient as its equilibrium condition, then the tops of the two would clearly not be in equilibrium. The other column might have a 2 K difference, and a thermometer at the top would be able to tell us these gases are not in equilibrium. Thus we can conclude that the temperature gradient must be the same for any gas.

    The same holds for a column of water. Or a column of copper. The gradient must be a universal feature, a function only of the gravitational field, independent of the materials involved.

    This leads to all sorts of question about what “temperature” would even mean. Simply lifting an object should change its temperature. This also applies to thermometers themselves, so simply lifting a thermometer would lower its temperature. So you could only talk about temperature by ALSO including reference to its elevation. 300 K at sea level would mean something fundamentally different from 300 K at 10,000 m elevation.

    Now there is one simple way out of this conundrum — the gradient could be 0 K/km. 🙂

  78. Trick says:

    Tim F 10:05pm – “Without the 0th law, there is no way to say that two objects are the same temperature…”

    Not strictly true; actually the 0th tells us if the two heat reservoirs are in equilibrium with a third reservoir they are in equilibrium with each other. Three reservoirs are needed to invoke the 0th law yet Graeff has only one reservoir and the tall air column is only one reservoir. Tim could invoke 0th if there were three Graeff reservoirs but there are not.

    Tim continues: “How can I know that a 1 m tall column of air has come to thermal equilibrium?”

    The entropy will no longer be increasing w/less T at the top than the bottom if the column is closed and adiabatic in a gravity field. Recent application of thermo theory and tedious math accounting for the energy at the max. S find T(z) = T0 * ((P(z)/P0)^k) which is by inspection non-isothermal at LTE max. entropy no heat flow.

    Tim continues: “I can take that column of gas and (in my mind) divide it into 1 mm tall slices.”

    Yes, you now have 1000 non-isothermal LTE reservoirs that will not know any of the others exist because they are all adiabatic and enclosed. No reservoir will equilibrate with the others. Measuring each with a thermometer will give different temperatures wrt initial conditions when they were separated.

    Tim continues: “Anytime you use a thermometer to compare the temperature of two parts of a system, you have already “divided” the system in two, and introduced a third system (the thermometer). You have your 3 systems, and you ARE using the 0th law, whether you “see” it or not!”

    Finally! The correct application of the 0th law. But note due to constraints specified by Graeff, T(z) = T0 * ((P(z)/P0)^k) if the thermometer is inserted in that adiabatic, enclosed Graeff container (no powder), then read a different T at each z in LTE until the ambient bath heat profile arrives on the scene. Pretty cool. Inspect the T(z) formula.

    No contradiction, no conundrum.

  79. Trick says:

    Tim F 10:32pm– “Now suppose you have a column of a DIFFERENT gas….there is one simple way out of this conundrum — the gradient could be 0 K/km.”

    No.There is another way out. Why? Given a fixed Graeff container. Gas A and Gas B are different fills in B74A run and B74B run.

    Take a look at the formula for T(z) in the enclosed adiabatic Graeff container. T(z) = T0 * ((P(z)/P0)^k) where k = R/Cp. The only way the T(Hmax) can be different is if k is different. So you just need to chose gas mixture A with different specific heat at constant pressure (Cp) than gas mixture B.

    THAT is a simpler way out, the T(z) gradient IS different by your 1K & 2K given proper Cp choices. That is why I wrote:

    No conundrum, no contradiction. 300K at surface is 300K at 10,000 feet though boiling water might be found an experience in differentiation.

  80. Tim Folkerts says:

    Trick says: “… the T(z) gradient IS different …”

    * But then you can run a perpetual motion machine using the equilibrium temperature difference. The top of Column 1 will always be different from the top of Column 2, which can be used to run a heat engine indefinitely.

    * But then the 0th Law Fails! The top of Column 1 is i equilibrium with the bottom of Column 1, which is in equilibrium with the bottom of Column 2, which is in equilibrium with the top of Column 2. But the top of Column 1 is clearly not in equilibrium with the top of Column 2! Thermal equilibrium must be transitive if it is to have any meaning at all (which is the whole point of the 0th Law).

  81. Tim Folkerts says:

    “Yes, you now have 1000 non-isothermal LTE reservoirs that will not know any of the others exist because they are all adiabatic and enclosed. “

    No — there is no adiabatic wall, only an imaginary surface dividing the different slices. For the sake of argument, lets consider a horizontal cylinder (to side-step for now the Graeff effect). Suppose I put hot air in the left and cold air in the right and wait a while. I ask myself “how could I experimentally determine if the left and right have reached equilibrium yet?” The answer is simple. I put a thermocouple on the left and see what voltage it produces. Then I move the thermocouple to the right and see what voltage it produces. If the voltage is the same at each end (or the length of a column of mercury, or resistance of a piece of wire, or …. ) then I conclude the two ends are in equilibrium (and presumably the rest of the air in between is as well).

    In other words, when the two ends (two objects) are each in equilibrium with the thermocouple (the third object) then they are in equilibrium with each other.

    And THAT is the 0th Law! Three objects, just as those “grandmasters” required.

  82. Trick says:

    Tim F 11:53pm: “ * But then you can run a perpetual motion machine using the equilibrium temperature difference. The top of Column 1 will always be different from the top of Column 2, which can be used to run a heat engine indefinitely.”

    Yes the top of ideal column A and top of ideal column B with different Cp will always be a different T(hmax). Forever. These are ideal Graeff containers not the real one which will get overwhelmed by the ambient T profile eventually.

    The ideal columns A & B will just sit there and ideally idle away in perpetuity, entropy will remain constant. No energy out to slow down, no energy in to speed up in either A or B case, both adiabatic, closed.

    THAT is why you can’t connect them.

    If you do break the adiabatic constraint & connect A&B – still cannot be used to run a heat engine indefinitely. If connect them heat flows out of one & into the other until LTE when the new control volume ceases heat flow. No more running of the heat engine. Now you have doubled all the P,V,n and get a new Cp’ and a new T(z) = T0 * ((P(z)/P0)^k’).

    ——————————————————————————

    Tim continues: “ * But then the 0th Law Fails! The top of Column 1 is in equilibrium with the bottom of Column 1, which is in equilibrium with the bottom of Column 2, which is in equilibrium with the top of Column 2. But the top of Column 1 is clearly not in equilibrium with the top of Column 2!”

    No 0th fail. I can agree “the bottom of Column 1, which is in equilibrium with the bottom of Column 2” is possible because of the T0, P0 of Gas A and Gas B being the same starting point initial condition, so measure same T. Double check the theoretical formula and you will see the other T(z) and especially T(hmax.) is different though due to Cp difference.

    There are two heat reservoirs A & B (ok, your 1 & 2). YES! These A&B T(hmax) points ARE in equilibrium within each reservoir and measure different temperatures! So WOW. Spooky, huh? This conundrum stumped the classical guys until recently proven not a conundrum and to be ok with all the laws. T(z) = T0 * ((P(z)/P0)^k) works just fine within each reservoir.

    NB: “…the top of Column 1 is clearly not in equilibrium with the top of Column 2” is possible because they are in two different heat reservoirs not in equilibrium with each other due to the Cp difference.

  83. Trick says:

    Tim F 12:13am – “No — there is no adiabatic wall, only an imaginary surface dividing the different slices.”

    NB: My last post 1:09am excuse please where I posted “…you have doubled all the P,V,n..” – go ahead and strike the P, just V & n double.

    So lessee…now Tim wants no adiabatic wall in his mind in the 1000 slices. This is of course a whole new ball game with heat flowing in/out of the 1000 slices. But I’ll play with the new rules. We have imaginary surfaces now that divide the 1m column into 1000 slices across which heat can flow (non-adiabatic). I am going to presume pressure can communicate too. And free movement of the colliding n molecules.

    You know what, I think Tim just put back together his 1m tall column. A cyclic process! If no work escaped control volume, back to same T(z) = T0 * ((P(z)/P0)^k) non-isothermal in equilibrium (LTE).

    ————————————–

    Tim continues: “…lets consider a horizontal cylinder…In other words, when the two ends (two objects) are each in equilibrium with the thermocouple (the third object) then they are in equilibrium with each other.”

    YES! Getting better at 0th law application. Didja’ notice horizontally z does not change? So T does not change horizontally either. Graeff’s experiment will be isothermal horizontally and non-isothermal vertically in the gravity field. Whoa, this should not be a surprise, works that way in hydrodynamics too, P is the same horizontally!

    So pick any z you want say z=TIM, any constant height horizontally: T(TIM) = T0 * ((P(TIM)/P0)^k) anywhere in that imaginary TIM slice. What do you know T is isothermal all across z=TIM. This is sort of like the dz integral, here the slice is really infinitesimal. Pick a different TIM’ and T(TIM’) will be different due to different pressure P(TIM’), same k.

  84. ferdberple says:

    Lucy Skywalker says:
    June 30, 2012 at 11:21 pm
    No! 🙂 We are subject to an external force that would accelerate us if there was nothing to impede that acceleration…
    ==============
    No, I disagree with this statement. You are talking about “speed relative to the earth”.

    I am talking about acceleration, relative to nothing. Every one of us experiences a force equal to an acceleration of 9.8 m/s^2 while standing still on the earth.

    This goes back to the classic Einstein thought experiment. There is no difference between standing on the earth and sitting in a rocket ship with the engines on, accelerating at 9.8m/s^2. When we think we are standing still we are in fact accelerating with considerable force.

    It is this acceleration that creates the temperature gradient. It is the illusion that we are standing still that creates the notion that this somehow violates the 2nd law. Repeat the experiment in space, in a rocket that accelerates at 9.8m/s^2, and it is clear there is no violation of the 2nd law.

    I’ve done just that using excel to build a model to replace gravity with acceleration and to replace air molecules with perfectly elastic balls and the gradient is obvious from the KE of the balls. Try the same thing. Use the Einstein thought experiment to remove the illusion that you are standing still in space. You aren’t. Gravity and acceleration are indistinguishable.

  85. tchannon says:

    We are not accelerating. If that was so our potential energy level would be changing but it is static.

  86. Trick says:

    tchannon 3:46am – Our potential energy is measured relative to a reference frame. So is acceleration.

    Stand on earth holding an accelerometer so the measuring axis is horizontal, it will register ~0 ft/sec/sec. Do nothing but rotate the accelerometer so the measuring axis is vertical, it will now register ~32.2 ft/sec/sec. Useful in calibration work.

  87. Tim Folkerts says:

    Trick, I think it is time to agree to disagree. I see what you are saying, but what you are saying disagrees with the laws of thermodynamics (as taught around the world) and furthermore is not internally consistent.

    Very briefly, let me summarize. You say:
    “If you do break the adiabatic constraint & connect A&B – still cannot be used to run a heat engine indefinitely. If connect them heat flows out of one & into the other until LTE”

    Just to be clear — we have two separate columns of gas. Both are connected at the bottom to a thermal reservoir, so the bottoms are in thermal equilibrium with each other and are the same temperature. The rest of the columns are perfectly insulated. At the top of the columns, we have the ability to thermally connect the two columns (perhaps by removing some the insulation between the two columns, while maintaining insulation between the columns and the rest of the universe.

    If (as you claimed in the quote above) heat would flow if the tops of the two columns are brought into contact, then they are not initially in equilibrium. But we had established thru the chain (top of A) (bottom of A) (bottom of B) (top of B) that they were in equilibrium.

    You simply cannot have the tops IN equilibrium with each other and NOT IN equilibrium with each other simultaneously.

    Or we could periodically “break the adiabatic constraint”. Each time we break the constraint, we can extract some energy “until LTE”. Each time we “re-establish the adiabatic constraint”, the temperature difference re-develops. We can continue this indefinitely, getting a bit of energy from our heat engine every time. Infinite free energy.

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    I’m sure you will not convince me of your position, and I suspect the reverse is also true. We’ve made our key arguments. I’ll leave it to others to work out for themselves which position is correct. I’ve got other fish to fry …

  88. ferdberple says:

    tchannon says:
    July 5, 2012 at 3:46 am
    We are not accelerating.
    ===========
    The gravitational field of the earth when standing at rest on the surface is physically indistinguishable from an acceleration in open space of 9.8m/s^2 (32 ft/s/s). This was Einstein’s insight leading to the development of relativity.

    When you are falling in a gravitational field you are “weightless”, which is the equivalent on sitting in open space with zero acceleration.

    When you are standing on the surface of the earth your KE is increasing, in the reference frame of an object in free fall towards the surface.

    Instead of thinking in terms of gravity, assume that you are in a space ship with zero gravity, and the ship is accelerating at 9.8m/s/s. Objects in free fall are then standing still and you are accelerating relative to them. It then becomes clear your KE is increasing the reference frame of the objects in free fall.

  89. ferdberple says:

    A column of air in zero gravity, or a columns of air in free fall in a gravitational field will be iso-thermic.

    However, if you accelerate a vertical column of air in a pace ship (or by placing it on the surface of the earth) the molecules in the column will be accelerated towards one end and have a higher KE at that end, and will also be denser at that end.

    The molecules at the other end will have a lower KE as they struggle to overcome the acceleration (KE is converted to PE), and if the column is tall enough they will never have sufficient KE to reach the less dense end. As the slow and fall back towards the dense end their KE will increase along with the overall density, which we will register as a temperature gradient.

  90. Trick says:

    Tim F 4:49am: “…what you are saying disagrees with the laws of thermodynamics (as taught around the world) and furthermore is not internally consistent.”

    Nothing I’ve written (unless a typo) disagrees with any applicable thermo laws or what is correctly taught around the world; recent papers written using the laws correctly consistently show adiabatic, enclosed powderless Graeff column T(z) = T0 * ((P(z)/P0)^k) non-isothermal in equilibrium (LTE). Just read them. Slowly.

    Tim: “Just to be clear — we have two separate columns of gas. Both are connected at the bottom to a thermal reservoir, so the bottoms are in thermal equilibrium with each other and are the same temperature.”

    The initial conditions at the bottom T0 and P0 are set to roughly the avg. of earth’s surface for those parameters (T~288K, P~1000 hPa = 1atm at z=0). Once the initial conditions are set, the gas n is loaded, the bottom thermal reservoir is removed and replaced with adiabatic wall.
    Tim: “.. we had established thru the chain (top of A) (bottom of A) (bottom of B) (top of B) that (the two columns) were in equilibrium.”

    No we have not established that other than they are in different equilibrium states. The Cp is different so the columns are not same T(z) anywhere except at the initial condition level z=0 i.e. T(0) for A = T(0) for B. All T(z) is then different for the two columns going up with gravity, esp. T(hmax).

    Tim: “You simply cannot have the tops IN equilibrium with each other and NOT IN equilibrium with each other simultaneously.”

    Right they are never in equilibrium same T at the top. No problem. They are non-isothermal with different T profiles due to different Cp. It is really not too hard to see, just inspect the T formula for awhile:

    T(z) = T0 * ((P(z)/P0)^k), where k = R/Cp.

  91. Trick says:

    ferd 5:01am: “..if you accelerate a vertical column of air in a space ship (or by placing it on the surface of the earth) the molecules in the column will be accelerated towards one end and have a higher KE at that end, and will also be denser at that end.”

    Not if the ends are open allowing the column to do work on the air column above and below. That is the classical set-up and the solution is rightly isothermal. T(z) = T(P) = constant say T(z) = T0. This is the classical solution.

    Close those column ends and the enthalpy integral changes, becomes more tedious and the more recent solution becomes non-isothermal T(z) = T0 * ((P(z)/P0)^k), where k = R/Cp

  92. ferdberple says:

    Trick says:
    July 5, 2012 at 4:41 am
    Stand on earth holding an accelerometer so the measuring axis is horizontal, it will register ~0 ft/sec/sec. Do nothing but rotate the accelerometer so the measuring axis is vertical, it will now register ~32.2 ft/sec/sec.
    ===========
    Which confirms Einstein. The gravitation field of the earth while standing on the surface is physically indistinguishable from accelerating in a rocket in open space at 9.8m/s/s. At right angles to the direction of acceleration the force is zero. In the direction of the acceleration it is 9.8 m/s/s.

    A centrifuge is the equivalent to an accelerating rocket or a high G gravitational field.

    Imagine that you placed a column of air “vertically” in a billion G centrifuge. The molecules would all be at one end (the “bottom”). As they bounded off the bottom of the container upwards, they would quickly lose KE until they stopped and accelerated back towards the bottom.

    At the opposite end there would be few if any air molecules. They would have very low KE as they would have given this up in return for PE as they gained height. If they did reach the top they would bounce off and rapidly gain KE (temperature) as they accelerated towards the bottom of the container.

    One end of the container would be packed with high KE (low PE) molecules, while the other end would be sparsely populated by High PE (low KE) molecules. One end will be relatively hot, the other relatively cold, and will remain so while the centrifuge continues to spin.

    This apparatus can be readily modeled on a computer using perfectly elastic spheres in place of air molecules, and acceleration of the container in place of gravity.

  93. Trick says:

    ferd 4:41am – “…column of air “vertically” in a billion G centrifuge…”

    Any molecules at the cg of the billion g centrifuge wouldn’t go anywhere they would be weightless.

    The simplifying thing of the atmospheric air column is to keep things reasonable in pressures & temperatures. This billion g deal is not reasonable P or T, molecular level stuff could dominate unlike in the troposphere.

  94. ferdberple says:

    Trick says:
    July 5, 2012 at 5:42 am
    Any molecules at the cg of the billion g centrifuge wouldn’t go anywhere they would be weightless.
    ========
    The column of air is outside the center of rotation of the centrifuge. The purpose of the centrifuge is by way of demonstration, to make the effect obvious by increasing the gravitation field so there can be no room for doubt.

    “molecular level stuff” – no idea what that means. The gradient results from the conversion between PE and KE as a result of the gravitational field acting on the motion of the air molecules, which averages about 500 m/s at room temperature. Newtonian mechanics.

    Higher up in the column the molecules average speed must be reduced as compared to lower down in the column, due to the loss of KE required to overcome gravity to climb higher in the column. These slower moving molecules will be perceived as being cooler than the faster moving molecules.

    Think of the air molecules as a bunch of perfectly elastic bouncing balls. They will always be moving on average faster the lower they are in the column, and slower on average the higher they are in the column. This means the lower balls have on average a higher KE and thus will be measured to be on average higher temperature.

    The perfectly elastic collisions between the balls is conduction. In a gravity free column, this would result in all molecules having the same average KE throughout the column (iso-thermal). However, it is fairly straight forward to show that perfectly elastic collisions in a gravity column cannot maintain the same average KE throughout the column.

    Rather, gravity will quickly sort the balls so that the fastest moving ones are lower down and the slower moving ones are at the top (on average). There will of course be exceptions due to the collisions, but on average this is true, consistent with statistical thermodynamics.

  95. ferdberple says:

    Trick says:
    July 5, 2012 at 5:26 am
    Not if the ends are open allowing the column to do work on the air column above and below.
    =========
    This has no meaning. We are talking about a column of air in a container. If you open the bottom of the container the air will fall out of the bottom of the container, due to the acceleration of the ship (gravity). Nothing says there is air outside the column to support the weight of the air inside once the bottom is removed.

  96. ferdberple says:

    Conduction between the container and the column of air inside would appear to be a significant problem, as it will work to defeat the gradient. The other problem would appear to be convection, as the warmer molecules at the bottom will weigh less than the cooler molecules above, which will also work to defeat the gradient.

  97. Q. Daniels says:

    Another formulation for the bounds on the Second Law:

    The Second Law of Thermodynamics does not apply to systems for which no equilibrium exists.

    The “proofs” of the Second Law all assume the existence of an equilibrium, where small perturbations move the system away from equilibrium. The logic fails for any system for which the equilibrium does not exist. That’s the easy part.

    The hard part is proving that such systems exist.

    Graeff’s work suggests that gravity acting on a column of gas creates such a system.

    I have vaguely suggested another such system.

    Daniel Sheehan also suggests such a system, which he calls a “Linear Electrostatic Motor”.

  98. steveta_uk says:

    Trick, I know you don’t like the two column example, so why not consider a single column example, totally isolated form the environment, containing air and a copper column down the center.

    Clearly the copper and air have very different specific heats, so using the Graef formula will have different temperate profiles.

    So heat must travel up the copper from the warmer base to the cooler top. This must warm the top relative to the air at the top, and so must warm the air at the top, and so reduce the temperature gradient in the air.

    Leave this to stand for a few months to become totally stable (LTE).

    Nothing in the Graef equation allows the a reduction in the temperature gradient of the air. But it has happened.

    Explain, please.

  99. br1 says:

    ferdberple:
    “The gradient results from the conversion between PE and KE as a result of the gravitational field acting on the motion of the air molecules… Higher up in the column the molecules average speed must be reduced as compared to lower down in the column, due to the loss of KE required to overcome gravity to climb higher in the column. These slower moving molecules will be perceived as being cooler than the faster moving molecules.”

    I tried this and got no temperature gradient. I’ve linked it before, but you may have missed it, so here it is again: http://www.slideshare.net/brslides/maxwellboltzmann-particle-throw

    I then proved analytically that such a scenario under gravity has zero temperature gradient: http://www.slideshare.net/brslides/analytic-velocity-distribution-under-gravity

    What did you do in your simulation to get a temperature gradient? Can you share the actual results? What actual value of gradient did you measure (in the simulation)?

  100. Joe Lalonde says:

    Accuracy is very far the strong point of science.
    The LAWS being followed do NOT allow that they could be inaccurate.
    Ice, gases and rock is what is out in space and they all have very different parameters in experimentation. The experimentation itself is full of errors as well as they do NOT preclude motion or even our planetary shape which are two different factors. And yet they are used as examples for our planet.
    We tend to forget that water vapor is NOT a gas unless manipulated, so it is bound by different parameters than gases by it’s different density in a gas atmosphere.
    Sand and water collapse in a cone shape which should tell you that the layers of weight on top of each other is NOT even.

    Our planet is layers of pressure and an expanding circle on top of each other in layer after layer.
    These all have different velocities on our rotating planet.

  101. Trick says:

    steveta_uk – “…consider a single column…containing air and a copper column…”

    The copper column has eqn. of state for a solid; can be math modeled, just different than PV=nRT. Before LTE as you write, “…heat must travel up the copper from the warmer base to the cooler top….Leave this to stand for a few months to become totally stable (LTE). Explain, please.”

    At LTE max. entropy, heat ceases to flow in the system, both the copper and the gas, the modified Graeff system arrives at a T(z) consistent with both eqn.s of state. Nothing unphysical happens by dropping a copper rod into Graeff’s experiment (or a radio tower into the atm.), T(z) solution just gets more complicated.

    If you could sample the T(z) in the gas and copper at any z height at non-isothermal equilibrium, T at that z will be the same in both (0th law). Like the theoretical solution with Graeff’s powder, whatever that might be. Dropping in a thermocoupled copper rod would be a way more interesting experiment than the powder IMO.

  102. Trick says:

    ferd 7:04am – “This has no meaning. We are talking about a column of air in a container.”
    We are talking about 2 adiabatic control volumes 1) the classic isothermal solution constraints in an open atmosphere column and 2) the more recent non-isothermal solution constraints in a closed container such as Graeff’s experiment.

    The open column has no meaning in a container of course. When we are talking about a Graeff container – the ends of the air column are constrained to be closed.

    Look up the open atmospheric air column pictured in Fig. 1 here and you will quickly see there IS air outside the isothermal open column to support the weight of air inside:

    http://journals.ametsoc.org/doi/pdf/10.1175/1520-0469(2004)061%3C0931%3AOMEP%3E2.0.CO%3B2

    With some study, find the classic column allowed to do work on air column above and below becomes isothermal at LTE max. entropy.

  103. [Tim: First of all, just to clear up a possible confusion, re. my earlier comment of July 4, 2012 at :15 pm: Tim, I think that is a really good qualitative riposete…to my qualitative riposte. What I like about the position we have reached on this matter is that neither your position nor mine, nor any position in between, requires either of us to re-write the Laws of Thermodynamics. refers to your comment of July 4, 2012 at 4:38 pm not to your comment of July 4, 2012 at 5:38 pm to which I am now responding below. These comments are coming in so thick and fast I am having trouble keeping up!]

    Re. Tim Folkerts says, July 4, 2012 at 5:38 pm:

    David Socrates says: I take it you are not a fan of the Ideal Gas Law? Nothing could be further from the truth. The Ideal Gas Law is a GREAT little idealized equation that does a remarkably good job of describing real gases in a wide variety of situations.

    Partly, it was a provocative remark, as you might have guessed. But yes you are perfectly correct in your analysis and my statement that higher up in the atmospheric column the air temperature is necessarily cooler is logically wrong according to the Gas Laws although correct observationally in the real atmosphere. An intellectual slip from one focus of attention to the other I am afraid.

    I am actually painfully aware that the Ideal Gas Law tells you nothing definitive about the profile of temperature, or pressure, or density of a unit volume of the atmosphere at height z above ground level.

    A day or two ago I was working on this problem using P*V = m*R*T in the form P = ρ*R*T where ρ is the air density.

    I thought that knowing the values of 3 of those 4 variables at one level (say ground on Earth) one should surely enable one to derive the temperature Tz at any height z above ground. But I soon realised exactly what you said. The Gas Laws are not enough to determine it.

    The question is: what is?

  104. Tim Folkerts says, July 4, 2012 at 6:57 pm:
    A more fundamental statement of the 2nd law says entropy must stay the same or increase. Entropy in your system is decreasing, so you ARE violating this law.

    Is it? Why?

    Yes, it is possible that either or both of these laws are flawed, but I am not holding my breath on that option.

    Neither am I !!

  105. Trick says:

    David Socrates 2:08pm: “The question is: what is?”…enough to determine T(z) non-isothermal?

    For Graeff’s experiment, V is determined and constant i.e. V(z) = V0 = ½ litre per Lucy IIRC. R, (Cp once the gas is chosen) are of course constant. So there are three variables P(z), T(z), n(z).

    The variables are all continuous so need 3 independent equations for the complete solution at LTE. One of which is PV=nRT. The other two come from law 1) writing out 1st law gas enthalpy (energy) is constant constraint and law 2) entropy (S) in an adiabatic (no power sources, no forced convection) natural process has a preferred direction – constrain S tends toward max. at LTE.

    After some recent tedious math papers, with initial conditions at z=0 for P(0) = P0 and T(0) = T0 find for Graeff’s container in a reasonable atmosphere (earth’s troposphere) and before the ambient heat profile arrives on scene thru the insulation (w/no powder):

    T(z) = T0 * ((P(z)/P0)^k), where k = R/Cp.

  106. Trick,

    This is good. Where do we get to see the complete mathematical proof you describe, but laid out in a form that is readily understandable?

  107. Trick says:

    David 2:50pm – “Where do we get to see the complete mathematical proof…?”

    Eqn. 18 in the link I posted 7/5 1:07pm. Whether it is readily understandable, I have come to learn, depends on the reader being informed and critical.

  108. Tim Folkerts says:

    Trick says: “Nothing I’ve written (unless a typo) disagrees with any applicable thermo laws or what is correctly taught around the world; recent papers written using the laws correctly consistently show adiabatic, enclosed powderless Graeff column T(z) = T0 * ((P(z)/P0)^k) non-isothermal in equilibrium (LTE). Just read them. Slowly.”

    I would like to see a reference supporting that statement. Certainly the Verkely paper doesn’t come to that conclusion. What paper(s) are you referring to?

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    One thing to focus on is the use of “adiabatic” and what system it is applied to. It can be used to mean the system is isolated from the surrounding. Or, in some cases, it can be applied to subsystems.

    * Yes, if your systems is one parcel of air (say 1 m^3 at the ground wherever you are standing), and that parcel is lifted “adiabatically” (ie not allowed to exchange heat with the surrounding air), it will indeed cool as it goes up. It will do work on the surrounding air and lose energy. This is the origin of the “adiabatic lapse rate” (ie cooling about 10 K/km). But this assumes no heat exchange with the surrounding, ie thermal conductivity = 0.

    * At the other extreme, you could have perfect thermal conductivity. Then when you lift the parcel of air, it tries to cool as it expands, but immediately conducts heat from the surroundings and takes on the temperature of the surroundings. In this case, the air parcel will always adjust to be the pre-existing temperature of the air column.

    There will always be SOME thermal conduction with the surroundings, but with typical atmospheric convection (driven by heating at the ground and cooling at the top), the movement is quick enough that very little conduction can occur. The actual atmosphere is somewhere in between the two extremes (no convection, so only conduction is important vs strong convection, where conduction is important).

    Graeff’s experiments, however, are at the “no convection, so only conduction is important” limit. There is (presumably) no heating anywhere, so there is no convection. This (according to classical thermodynamics) does indeed lead to an isothermal profile.

  109. Tim Folkerts says:

    David Socrates says:
    July 5, 2012 at 2:36 pm

    >>Tim: Entropy in your system is decreasing, so you ARE violating this law.
    >David: Is it? Why?

    dS = dQ/T

    dQ is negative it the column of gas is cooling, so dS is negative during the entire process. If there was some cooler object absorbing the heat, this would be fine, because then it would have a positive dQ (and since the object is cooler, | dQ/T_cool | > |dQ/T_warm|, so the entropy gain of the cool object would be greater than the entropy lose of your gas column, and the entropy of the universe would be increasing, as required.)

    Instead, you are using your energy to charge a battery, which would ALSO decrease the entropy of the universe.

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    You could also just look at an alternate statement of the second law attributed to Kelvin:
    “No process is possible in which the sole result is the absorption of heat from a reservoir and its complete conversion into work.”
    Since these various statements have been shown to be equivalent, violating any version of hte second law means you violate any other version.

  110. Tim Folkerts says:

    Trick says: July 5, 2012 at 1:07 pm
    http://journals.ametsoc.org/doi/pdf/10.1175/1520-0469(2004)061%3C0931%3AOMEP%3E2.0.CO%3B2

    Let me just quote the conclusions of that paper ..

    3. Concluding remarks
    We reiterate that the entropy maximization problem
    in its pure classical setting—that is, imposing the constraints
    of 1) a constant total mass, as well as one of
    the two following constraints: 2) a constant energy E
    or 29) a constant enthalpy H—will result in an isothermal
    profile
    , corresponding to the state of thermodynamic
    equilibrium. This is the established classical result,
    despite all the confusion that existed already a century
    ago and that persists to the present day.

    Of course, the actual atmosphere is subject to processes
    like convective mixing. They prevent the atmosphere
    from ever coming close to thermodynamic
    equilibrium
    , that is, the ultimate state of maximal entropy.
    In this sense, these processes lower the maximum
    value that the entropy is allowed to attain. It thus seems
    natural that one should represent them by posing certain
    additional constraints in the maximization problem,
    considering that constraints 1 and 29 will continue to
    be valid. This is the key idea of this article.

    I’m not sure how much clearer he could have been. Only with non-equilibrium conditions (eg convective mixing) will the profile deviate from isothermal.

  111. Tim Folkerts says: July 4, 2012 at 6:49 pm

    Lucy Skywalker says: “The observed temperature gradients within the mines range from 10 to 50 K/km”… and this fits in with what I now understand thanks to Graeff’s work …

    The earth’s crust has a temperature gradient because it is heating from below (nuclear decay, hot mantle) and cooled from above (conduction atmosphere, radiation to space)…

    Ah, this is where I now suspect disagreement, and as I said, thanks to Graeff. He has opened up for me a whole new way of looking at all the workings of the whole solar system. Yes, that much. Work out what the theoretical temperature gradient due to gravity should be, through Earth’s crust – assuming Graeff’s theory is correct – and you are in for a surprise. I’ve lived with it now for a few months and all I can say is, it fits, fits, and fits again. And it fits nicely and cleanly.

    This is why I, an unqualified noob who have difficulty understanding much of the dialogue here, am still doing this work. I think it is that important to Science.

  112. Trick says:

    Tim F 3:04pm: “Certainly the Verkely paper doesn’t come to that conclusion.”

    ? !

    It is Verkley btw. Certainly this paper is the starting ref. you need as it DOES come to “that conclusion” in 2b, which handles Graeff’s experimental constraints of closed container.

    Verkley&Gerkema 2b (& supported by details in B&A text – you NEED to ref. there for further explanation) do come to the conclusion Graff’s experiment (w/no powder) WILL come to LTE ideally with their recent non-isothermal eqn. 18:

    T(z) = T0 * ((P(z)/P0)^k), where k = R/Cp apparently before & while the insulation is slowly allowing enough ambient heat bath to arrive on the dewar scene.

    Tim continues: “There will always be SOME thermal conduction with the surroundings…”

    Yes in reality this is the standard atmosphere & Graeff’s real experiment will eventually be ambient but NOT in the ideal V2b theory where the control volume is simply stated to be adiabatic & closed to work in/out as step 1. This constraint idealization allows thermo theory V2b to find a closed solution for Graeff set-up: T(z)as above is non-isothermal in Graeff’s nearly adiabatic, closed container.

    Tim continues: “Graeff’s experiments…(according to classical thermodynamics) does indeed lead to an isothermal profile.”

    NOOOOO….!! You cannot see Graeff’s closed constraints are such that soln. T(z) = T0 * ((P(z)/P0)^k), where k = R/Cp applies & is NON-isothermal & thus non-classic! SEE therein T varies with z. Graeff’s container is CLOSED – not open which is the classic work in/out set up. The classic open isothermal soln. prevails as in V2a when work is allowed in/out changing the enthalpy integral.

    How many times can I say this and not be heard by you? Many I guess. But I’m willing (obviously) to hang around and find the root cause of the deafness. I am guessing you do not see the change in enthalpy integral between an open system and Graeff’s closed system.

    Answer me this: How does gas enthalpy integral change when in step 1 the constraint is changed from Graeff’s no work across control volume to grandmaster classic work in/out across control volume?

    I had to find that out & think it thru to absorb the body of the paper and I had to go get B&A for details.

    I see in your next post the problem with Verkley&Gerkema conclusion. Stay tuned, you simply have not absorbed the body of the paper. It is merely a pea and thimble problem. I will try to clear THAT up.

  113. Tim Folkerts says: July 4, 2012 at 4:38 pm

    The real atmosphere has a gradient because it is heated rather vigorously at the bottom (by contact with the sunlight-heated ground) and cooled rather vigorously at the top (by IR radiation to space). So of course the real atmosphere has a temperature gradient. Take away that differential heating/cooling and all of a sudden an isothermal profile doesn’t seem even a tad unlikely for a truly isolated. insulated column of air.

    Indeed, that is the current notion. And by day, certainly there is truth in your statement.

    But lots of work here at TT (Nikolov and Zeller, Tim Channon’s post on the anomalous warmth at Jericho, and more) all cumulatively alerted me to the idea that the current notion was inadequate. For me, Graeff simply nailed that inadequacy with elegant experiments and theory that precisely filled the gap and put the whole notion of lapse rates on a secure scientific footing, and now makes them logical and comprehensible. To me.

  114. Tim Folkerts says:

    TIM SAID> “The real atmosphere has a gradient because it is heated rather vigorously at the bottom (by contact with the sunlight-heated ground) and cooled rather vigorously at the top (by IR radiation to space). ”

    LUCY REPLIED> “Indeed, that is the current notion. And by day, certainly there is truth in your statement. ”

    The atmosphere is a rather poor thermal conductor, so the thermalization toward equilibrium is very slow. Convection is very rapid and strong, so it can quickly take the atmosphere away from equilibrium.

    So during the day, convection creates a gradient. At night (with limited heating of the ground and limited convection), the atmosphere can only slowly revert toward toward the equilibrium condition (isothermal according to classical thermodynamics (and according to Verkley) ).

    I would ask you how inversions occur — they are quite common at night. The ground cools, and the atmosphere follows by conduction, so the temperature increases with height. If the Graeff effect was significant in the atmosphere, such inversions would be impossible. If the Graeff effect exists, it clearly is much weaker than convection or conduction in the atmosphere.

    IMHO, there too many cases where “standard explanations” work but the Graeff effect doesn’t (inversions in the atmosphere, oceans being cool at the bottom”). To me, Occam’s Razor tells me we don;t need a new explanation for these. Even if the effect is real, it is almost certainly only important in highly controlled situations where convection and conduction (and radiation) are all carefully removed.

    PS I *do* think Graeff’s work is interesting — thought-provoking to say the least! But I would need WAY more experimental confirmation (hopefully from independent sources). I would also like to see a stronger theoretical explanation. Graeff basically rediscovered the standard lapse rate derivation that predicts when the atmosphere becomes unstable to convection (but it is NOT the equilibrium solution). The “degree of freedom” argument seems entirely empirical, rather than founded in firm science.

  115. Trick says:

    Tim F 3:31pm: “I’m not sure how much clearer he could have been. Only with non-equilibrium conditions (eg convective mixing) will the profile deviate from isothermal.”

    Strike any forced convective mixing non-equilibrium of the real atmosphere pea since V2a and V2b peas are at equilibrium w/no forcing, & YES! YES! in V2b & Graeff apparatus, free convective mixing (termed by V2b “turbulent”) is allowed to exist by the thermo laws (forced convective mixing real non-equilibrium is NOT allowed as there is no power source) so as you write V2b then has a non-isothermal LTE solution under the constraints of V2b which are exactly like Graeff’s experiment at LTE which again, allows free convective mixing w/o the powder.

    The Graeff B74 experiment (sans the powder) will also initially come out non-isothermal in equilibrium (as some of Lucy’s writing seems to indicate) before the external heat bath forcing arrives. Cite V2b paper LTE eqn. 18 with conditions of adiabatic, closed to work in/out (while writing the gas enthalpy) yet again:

    T(z) = T0 * ((P(z)/P0)^k), where k = R/Cp.

    Now briefly about those 2 Verkley conclusion paragraphs. How did you get the monster quotes??
    The 1st paragraph deals with V2a, the classic solution pea with work allowed in/out.
    The 2nd paragraph you clip deals with the real atmosphere non-equilibrium (always at lower S than ideal) as modeled in 2c the “new” pea.

    Nowhere in your conclusion clip do Verkley and Gerkema discuss V2b Graeff constraints. That pea is not under either thimble clipped, V2b pea is in the last paragraph.

    Read that 3rd paragraph. Here the authors wrestle with the constraint choices 1) V2a: adiabatic open to work in/out = isothermal T(z) constant and 2) V2b: adiabatic closed to work in/out non-isothermal T(z) = T0 * ((P(z)/P0)^k), where k = R/Cp
    .
    Look at their last sentence you did not clip, find here a reason why Graeff’s experiment (w/no powder) is so interesting, added parens. mine for clarity: “In our view, this (the V2b) particular constraint still lacks a solid physical basis; yet, the above results give reason to expect that the construction of such a basis may be possible because the three constraints 1, 2’, and 3 together (V2b) lead to a(n ideal non-isothermal) temperature profile that corresponds remarkably well to the (real) tropospheric part of the Standard Atmosphere.” Ref. their Fig 2, compare dashed & dotted profiles.

    Translated to be even more clear: V2b and Graeff’s constraints of adiabatic, closed to work in/out on enthalpy so non-isothermal soln. “turbulence” prevails and V2b: T(z) = T0 * ((P(z)/P0)^k), where k = R/Cp “…corresponds remarkably well to tropospheric part of the standard atmosphere.”

    The Akmaev 2008 paper that br1 posted earlier adds the solid physical basis theoretically with heavier math. But Graeff’s experiments are adding an experimental basis (complicated by the powder, wish he would drop that device).

    NB: As I just posted to David Socrates there are 3 simultaneous eqn.s solved in V2b for T(z) = T0 * ((P(z)/P0)^k), where k = R/Cp …

    1) PV=nRT ideal gas eqn. of state
    2) Law 1 writing out 1st law gas enthalpy (energy) is constant constraint
    3) Law 2 entropy (S) in an adiabatic (no power sources, no forced convection) written so natural process has a preferred direction – constrain S tends toward max. at LTE.

    Three continuous simultaneous eqn.s, three unknowns P(z), T(z), n(z) in Graeff’s experiment. Three thermo laws used. Again, 0th law not applicable since only one heat reservoir. But conduction/free convection are allowed to operate physically under these 3 equations.

    Solve them simultaneously for (no-powder!) non-isothermal Graeff’s T(z) = T0 * ((P(z)/P0)^k), where k = R/Cp.

  116. David Socrates says: July 4, 2012 at 6:15 pm

    thanks David for all that clarification.

    I am congenitally wary of all thought experiments! and tend to shut off! however you provide a spirited defence of why Graeff’s work does not break the Second Law (or even require a modification, in your opinion.)

    David, for my third time 🙂 I encourage you to read Graeff’s book!

    He spends a lot of time in the book talking around ideas, how he came to them, how his experiments developed slowly out of something very different, the difficulties, the way life led him, the efforts at trying to interest the universities, “to patent or not to patent, that is the question”, and so on. It really help, when one’s information has reached out to all the different points of reference; then one can return to centre with a far better understanding of just why each detail of the experiment and theory was done as it was done – and a more relaxed understanding of the concepts. Well, that’s how it was for me.

    One thing I now know about the Second Law is that there are dozens of statements of it, and Prof Dan Sheehan says about it “while everyone thinks they know it, nobody can agree as to what it says” IIRC. You might appreciate dipping into Sheehan’s stuff without having to fork out the £100-odd needed for his book. Amazon does a “peek preview“, and I seem to remember finding more.

    So I still prefer to stick with Graeff’s wording, more or less, and my insistence that the statement of the Second Law that we inherit from Maxwell et al (not its essential content) needs to be modified. Not all statements even talk about heat flowing from hot to cold. The sense I am familiar with is simply about a general move towards equilibrium. For me, this modification of language is needed in order to clear up the ancient misapplication of 2LoT to vertical columns of air, an untested hypothesis that the good Maxwell let loose, unsuspectingly, and with the best of intentions.

    Maxwell believed the isloated column of air would have to be isothermal. But since Graeff has showed that the convection-impeded column has a negative temperature gradient about ten times the ALR, I maintain that an imaginary isolated tall column of air (let’s say, 2cm diameter glass tube, insulated, no solar input, 1000m high) would show a strong adiabatic lapse rate, actually somewhat higher than the atmosphere because already with 2cm there is quite a strong barrier to convection, with 1000m height.

    And hey, I believe I have evidence on my side for this. The Vehicle Assembly Building at Cape Kennedy / Canaveral originally experienced a curious phenomenon. Weather inside the building. Little thunderstorms. It’s not in this article so you’d have to track down the info and how they dealt with it.

    So, not an alteration of the basic 2LoT, just a modification of its statement in some of its forms, particularly those forms which draw on the purely theoretical assumption of isothermal columns of air which evidence has now challenged.

  117. Bryan says:

    Tim Folkerts says:

    “The real atmosphere has a gradient because it is heated rather vigorously at the bottom (by contact with the sunlight-heated ground) and cooled rather vigorously at the top (by IR radiation to space). ”

    This may be the case for Earth, but cooling at the top of atmosphere by radiation is not a condition for the Earth to have a lapse rate.

    If the Earth had no “Greenhouse Gases” (for example a pure N2 atmosphere) there would still be a lapse rate.

    The Sun heats the Earth surface unevenly and it will radiate unevenly.
    This radiation will be the only method of cooling the Earths surface.
    The N2 atmosphere will have a similar density structure to the present Earth.

    N2 parcels will adiabatically expand and rise cooling as they work against the gravitational field and so on.
    So we would have a lapse rate without the condition of cooling at the top.

  118. Tim Folkerts says:

    Trick says “How did you get the monster quotes??

    Use the “blockquote” tag.

    But beyond, that I don’t think we can learn much from each other. It’s like we are reading two different papers!

    I would ask you one specific question. You keep making a big deal about open vs closed columns. But the paper uses exactly the same variational methods throughout. This would imply that all the sections apply to the same sort of columns of gas. What specifically in the paper do you see that allows “work in/out” in some sections but “no work in/out” in others? Or am I misinterpreting you?

    ” … as you write V2b then has a non-isothermal LTE solution under the constraints of V2b which are exactly like Graeff’s experiment at LTE which again, allows free convective mixing w/o the powder.”
    This highlights a key difference in our understanding. “Free convection” requires continued heating at the bottom/cooling at the top. With no heating/cooling, the convection will eventually stop — bulk motion of gas molecules is not compatible with thermal equilibrium (it is not the maximum entropy condition). The differential heating “stirs the gas”, but once the “stirring” stops, bulk motion in the gas will slow and stop.

    There is no free convective mixing in an isolated column of gas! Graeff’s columns will have diffusive mixing, but no bulk convection.

  119. Tim Folkerts says:

    Tim said : “The real atmosphere has a gradient because it is heated rather vigorously at the bottom (by contact with the sunlight-heated ground) and cooled rather vigorously at the top (by IR radiation to space). ”

    Bryan replied: “This may be the case for Earth, but cooling at the top of atmosphere by radiation is not a condition for the Earth to have a lapse rate.”

    Good point! I should perhaps have said “heated rather vigorously in some areas (by contact with the ground on warm, sunlight-heated half the earth) and cooled rather vigorously in other areas (by IR radiation to space or by contact with the ground on the cool, dark half).”

    Off-hand, it is tough to guess how important each of these are to driving convection. I strongly suspect both are significant, but that is mostly an educated guess.

  120. br1 says:

    Hi all,

    I hope some of you take the time to have a look at my latest simulation, this time for a molecule in a centrifuge: http://www.slideshare.net/brslides/temperature-gradient-molecule-in-centrifuge

    Revving the centrifuge up to 100 ‘g’ such that a density differential of over x100 exists between the inner and outer radius of the centrifuge, one still finds an isothermal answer.

    So I still can’t find a reason to get a gradient.

  121. ferdberple says: July 5, 2012 at 2:28 am

    Lucy Skywalker says: June 30, 2012 at 11:21 pm
    No! 🙂 We are subject to an external force that would accelerate us if there was nothing to impede that acceleration…
    ==============
    No, I disagree with this statement. You are talking about “speed relative to the earth”.

    I am talking about acceleration, relative to nothing. Every one of us experiences a force equal to an acceleration of 9.8 m/s^2 while standing still on the earth… There is no difference between standing on the earth and sitting in a rocket ship with the engines on, accelerating at 9.8m/s^2.

    It is this acceleration that creates the temperature gradient. It is the illusion that we are standing still that creates the notion that this somehow violates the 2nd law. Repeat the experiment in space, in a rocket that accelerates at 9.8m/s^2, and it is clear there is no violation of the 2nd law

    I think I see where you are coming from.

    The important thing for me, at this point, was to separate what happens at the MICROSCOPIC-molecular level from how to describe things at the MACROSCOPIC-daily-Newtonian-experience level. True, the molecules ARE being accelerated through a tiny distance, a “delta” distance that tends to zero 🙂 hitting another molecule and passing on a tiny extra bit of energy downwards. But the energy by the law of averages is equipartitioned when it is received, therefore the work done by the unidirectional gravity force is lessened by the number of degrees of freedom when calculating the heat produced. And the net MACROSCOPIC effect is the po-faced “brick-in-the-wall” or “column of air” that apparently stands still.

    Gad, who’d-a-thought it, all those punch-ups going on that aren’t supposed to be happening…

    I won’t even think about comparison with rockets unless I want a sore head 🙂 Incidentally this is why I’m also staying off centrifuge material because it’s as much as I can cope with, to get the basics right.

  122. br1 says:

    Tim Folkerts:
    “It’s like we are reading two different papers!”

    I sympathise 🙂

    Did you read Akmaev’s paper? It is basically a follow-up to Verkley, freely available at http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/qj.209/abstract

    He comes to the same conclusions as Verkley (all the standard isothermal solutions you have been quoting), but is more explicit in how the power supplies in Verkley 2b work, and how the Verkley 2b solution is not in thermodynamic equilibrium. I recommend you read it, as you will find even more support for your statements.

  123. ferdberple says: July 5, 2012 at 5:01 am

    A column of air in zero gravity, or a columns of air in free fall in a gravitational field will be iso-thermic.

    However, if you accelerate a vertical column of air in a pace ship (or by placing it on the surface of the earth) the molecules in the column will be accelerated towards one end and have a higher KE at that end, and will also be denser at that end

    I never tire of the Hilsch vortex tube. Graeff wrote about using one himself. It shows your effects so simply and graphically. Yes, I can see that the centrifuge force is unidirectional, like gravity, so should be comparable. IOW in your rocket accelerating at 2G, once to match gravity and once to accelerate up, the temperature gradients on board will be twice Graeff’s figures. OK, got that. Now how to calculate the acceleration curve across a centrifuge cross-section??

    For the moment I’d rather stick with replicating Graeff’s static experiments that apparently can produce significant results.

  124. Tim Folkerts says: July 5, 2012 at 7:38 pm

    I would ask you how inversions occur — they are quite common at night. The ground cools, and the atmosphere follows by conduction, so the temperature increases with height. If the Graeff effect was significant in the atmosphere, such inversions would be impossible. If the Graeff effect exists, it clearly is much weaker than convection or conduction in the atmosphere.

    IMHO, there too many cases where “standard explanations” work but the Graeff effect doesn’t…

    Tim, you’ve fed right into Graeff’s proof. Let me remind you, since it seems to have escaped your notice, that Graeff’s experiments attained their significance precisely because the negative temperature gradients occurred within environments which had a positive temperature gradient, warmer with height – normal for indoor life, but a “temperature inversion” for nighttime outdoors. Therefore, precisely therefore, the inner temperature gradient could not be explained by conduction or convection. What remains is gravity.

    Thank you.

  125. Tim F

    I do agree with you that the ocean is a mystery. Why should something apply to air and not to water? But once again, I have to take my starting-point with the experiments – and since there is no august and authoritative tradition to call on, I have to think it out for myself. Water clearly shows a negative temperature gradient, as well as air, in fact its gradient lines on Graeff’s graph is a lot steadier, no doubt because of its vastly higher thermal capacity per unit volume, and the limits of possibility with home-brewed experiments.

    But I have pondered over this difference between the atmosphere and the oceans, and here are my thoughts.

    Take a cubic metre of water, a block 1m x 1m x 1m. Now imagine it is all suddenly vaporized, replaced by steam. What height will a cubic metre of water need, if it is vaporized into a column with the same surface area? One kilometre or so. One thousand times the amount of gravitational potential at play on the same mass. Perhaps this helps explain why, in air, convection nine-tenths overcomes the natural gravitational temperature gradient, but in water, convection wins…

    Just a thought.

  126. Q. Daniels says:

    Chaos.

    What is the meaning of taking the variation of a non-converging system?

    Verkley (9), for example.

    Velasco (8) gets the residual term (1-mgz/E) from one variation, but does not actually compare that with two variations, to see that it converges.

  127. Now I have an admission to make.

    As I hinted, I have a lot of trouble with theoreticals here. I try to stay with the things that the experiments have shown, the core issues, I try to use simple language, and I try to make each comment reasonably understandable by itself.

    I lost out quite early on what Trick and Tim F were debating, and I have had to bypass the lot. I really apologize. When I started studying Climate Science I realized that certain people and certain arguments would get technical and although in theory I have the brain power to understand, in practice I would fall asleep regularly in front of the computer. I remember trying countless times to understand Ferdinand Engelbeen (carbon dioxide stuff). I would find myself simply falling asleep, followed by waking, trying again, getting a bit further, then falling asleep again. Nobody can say I didn’t try.

    I realized I had to look at priorities, and strengthen my ability to stay with the core issue.

    I largely gave up trying to understand the Sun in detail. Dogfights between Leif Svalgaard and whoever were incomprehensible and rapidly induced sleep. And I knew the Electric Universe material hung together because I had looked carefully – yet Anthony Watts seemed to shun it. I felt I understood enough, for the purposes of helping Climate Science get back on track. What am I doing here anyway? I’m not a professional and my track record of interest is a mere four or five years. I did at least get nearly-top “A”-level grades. I have other intense interests and I don’t know from one week to the next whether I will still experience Great Spirit calling me to Climate Science. But the calls, and yes, inner revelations, and yes, coincidences, have kept coming in. I just have to stay on track with my soul, which shows a core committment to help Climate Science, and thence Science altogether, regain integrity and thereby compatibility with Great Spirit.

    Sometimes I get lost and bogged down and start to doubt my calling or my ability. It is amazing and gratifying how much response this thread has generated – but I am not used to this! and a part of me fears the exposure, knowing I haven’t the foggiest what Verkley says but only having a strong feeling it is not central to supporting Graeff and passing on the awakening he has given me, which I feel is so important to Science.

    More on this in the next instalment. Thank you all meanwhile.

  128. br1 says: July 5, 2012 at 8:45 pm

    Revving the centrifuge up to 100 ‘g’ such that a density differential of over x100 exists between the inner and outer radius of the centrifuge, one still finds an isothermal answer.

    So I still can’t find a reason to get a gradient.

    So neither can you explain the Hilsch vortex tube? There has to be something missing in your simulation.

    Just as I suggested to Ferd, I suggest you also try to differentiate in your imagination more clearly between the macroscopic-Newtonial-everyday-experience reality, and the microscopic-molecular level of reality – just as Graeff did, when the realization hit him that he could, with incredible simplicity, apparently derive equations to calculate what the temperature gradients could be – equations that eventually, with the inclusion of the degrees of freedom, worked amazingly in practice. It might help you too to read or re-read Graeff’s full account of discovery. To me, the temperature gradient simply makes more and more sense, and exactly as Graeff says.

    It does take time for the “penny to drop” initially. Did with me. And even months later, it is still settling. But because I sensed Graeff’s importance, I really hammered at getting that understanding.

  129. Trick says:

    Tim F 8:29pm – “What specifically in the paper do you see that allows “work in/out” in some sections but “no work in/out” in others? Or am I misinterpreting you?”

    Good questions. No misinterpretation. Zeroing in on differences. For V2a adiabatic and work in/out see Verkley Fig. 1 cartoon caption: “The column is assumed to exchange no net heat with its surroundings but may perform work on the air above and below the column.”

    For section V2a see the gas enthalpy eqn. detail in B&A (not detailed in Verkley unfortunately) – it includes 3 terms – one for work the gas does on the environment & is not = 0. Unlike Graeff’s experiment where there is 0 work on environment. This is what I asked to see if you could find independently.

    For V2b, the column is adiabatic and enclosed “may NOT perform work on the air above and below the column.” Cartoon detail only shown in B&A text (exactly like Graeff’s B74 exp. set up) is not in Verkley unfortunately. To inspect for this, the gas enthalpy eqn. for V2b is detailed in B&A and inspection shows it includes only 2 terms, the work done on the environment term is set to 0. No work in/out for section V2b; it is fully enclosed.

    This difference in enthalpy eqn. constraint (energy conservation law) is what differences the math into showing isothermal in V2a LTE and non-isothermal in V2b LTE & for Graeff exp. The constraints matter big time. They are not intuitive.

    ————————-

    Tim continues: “There is no free convective mixing in an isolated column of gas! Graeff’s columns will have diffusive mixing, but no bulk convection.”

    This is fine – diffusive mixing. All authors struggle with terms in idealized V2b. Call it diffusive mixing, I will try to remember use that term when replying to you.

    Verkley uses “turbulence”, B&A employs a paragraph or two wrestling with it – I forget their term, Akmaev brings in Chebyshev and just settles it mathematically. For me, free convection works b/c seems like everyone likes to talk about convection (meaning forced or bulk) & this free convection terminology settles the difference, it is free to happen or not happen.

    Free convection or gravitational convection definition seems to fit the random perurbation of packet of molecules; they don’t have to bounce off each other perfectly to PV=nRT – if they don’t other forces bring them in line – call it molecular diffusion until someone complains about THAT. LOL.

  130. Trick says:

    Lucy 10:20pm – “..knowing I haven’t the foggiest what Verkley says…”

    Two things.

    1) Find it is a good thing for Graeff to drop out the powder, from my view anyway. No powder in Verkley.

    2) The money quote for you in Verkley is near the end, my parens. added for your clarity:

    “In our view, this particular (enclosed Graeff B74) constraint still lacks a solid physical basis; (the non-isothermal LTE solution in 2b will) lead to a temperature profile that corresponds remarkably well to the tropospheric part of the Standard Atmosphere.”

    I vote for you to keep up the replication effort, it is interesting. Discuss!

  131. Tim Folkerts says:

    Trick says: “This is fine – diffusive mixing. ”
    But they are two very different things! People don’t “struggle” to understand the difference between convection and diffusion.

    Verkley 2b deals specifically with true, bulk, convective mixing. Graeff deals specifically with NO convective mixing — a column carefully isolated from motion & heat so that there will be no convection inside. You must use different vocabulary and different approaches for each. Verkley 2b will have a temperature profile. Graeff (corresponding to Verkley 2a with no bulk motion) will NOT have a temperature profile.

    Trick also says: “For V2a adiabatic and work in/out see Verkley Fig. 1 cartoon caption: “The column is assumed to exchange no net heat with its surroundings but may perform work on the air above and below the column.” ”

    Figure 1 is part of the general explanation in Section 1. It applies to ALL THREE subsections in Section 2. They all are based on the same variational approach (just slightly different mathematical constraints on what is fixed and what is varying). I challenge you to find a specific quote saying this figure only applies to 2a, but not 2b or 2c.

  132. […] Comments tchannon on SuggestionsTim Folkerts on Graeff’s development of …Trick on Graeff’s development of …Trick on Graeff’s development of …Lucy […]

  133. Trick says:

    Tim F 1:21am: “I challenge you to find a specific quote saying this figure only applies to 2a, but not 2b…”

    Well, going to have to get a copy of B&A text then. Took about a week for me last time. Might be in a library near you. The specific quote and cartoon Fig. for 2b showing the Verkley Fig. 1 “only applies to 2a, but not 2b” is in there – I’d cite page & verse but alas I no longer have the book.

    Tim continues: “Graeff (corresponding to Verkley 2a with no bulk motion) will NOT have a temperature profile.”

    Please explain then how the B74 closed dewar “may perform work on the air above and below the column”. Graeff dewar is enclosed.

    I’ve re-ordered B&A text.

    NB: Verkley terms the 2b “convective turbulent mixing” and 2b is an isolated column of gas.
    Diffusive mixing is your term, seems like you also are struggling for the right term per 8:29pm comment “There is no free convective mixing in an isolated column of gas!” I’ll see what B&A say again, in about a week.

  134. Tim Folkerts says:

    Lucy says: “Tim F, I do agree with you that the ocean is a mystery. ”

    But that is the point! The ocean is no mystery at all!

    The oceans are heated at the equator, and cooled at the poles. That drives convection – the “ocean conveyor belt”. Cold water from the arctic “sinks” to the bottom (at the end of the Gulf Stream). There is no “lapse rate” for water the way there is for air, so the water stays cold all the way down. It then travels around the world, slowly warming by contact with the warmer ocean floor (heated by geothermal energy). Eventually it rises somewhere (in the pacific and indian oceans), forming surface currents. It is perfectly simple and perfectly well understood why the ocean bottom is cold.

  135. Q. Daniels says:

    Tim Folkerts wrote:
    Verkley 2b deals specifically with true, bulk, convective mixing. Graeff deals specifically with NO convective mixing — a column carefully isolated from motion & heat so that there will be no convection inside. You must use different vocabulary and different approaches for each. Verkley 2b will have a temperature profile. Graeff (corresponding to Verkley 2a with no bulk motion) will NOT have a temperature profile.

    This would be a serious discrepancy for Verkley 2a, which corresponds to the standard profile.

    I don’t think this is entirely correct, though. Verkley 2a shows a stability point, where the profile is stable with respect to small variations. Bulk motion is suppressed by the temperature profile. One interpretation is that this is the steepest gradient for which bulk motion does not occur. (As an aside, I think this is an inflection point rather than a maxima.)

    Graeff, on the other hand, constructs a system where bulk motion is physically suppressed. The only way I can think of to model that is as a collection of linked systems, rather than as a single system.

  136. Tim Folkerts says:

    Trick, I was referring to Verkley & Gerkema Which you had posted earlier. I’m not sure what “B&A” paper you might be referring to.

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    I don;t know what “B74 closed dewar” you are talking about. I will assume it is a specific example from Graeff;’s work, and you can correct me later if I am wrong.

    Figure 1 in V&G is picking a specific section in a column of gas, a specific subset . This could be the section of gas between 0.5 – 0.9 Atm. It could be the gas between 0.9998 – 0.9999 Atm. It could be the gas from 1 cm above the bottom of Graeff’s tube to 1 cm below the top. The ends of the tube (or the ground for the atmosphere) add additional constraints, which presumably V&G don’t want to deal with, so they stick to regions that specifically have gas above and below.

    So we take a section of gas somewhere in the middle of the atmosphere …. OR somewhere in the middle of Graeff’s closed tube. That section of air can do work on the sections above and below. That section of air can heat the sections above and below. So that section (within the middle of the tube) fits all the criteria. That section of gas (with no convection) should follow 2a = Isothermal. So now know that any section within the tube should be isothermal, so the whole tube should be isothermal.

    THAT is the interpretation of Figure 1 that I give.

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    I should have more specifically said “There is no free convective mixing in an isolated column of gas (IE NO EXCHANGE OF MASS, WORK, OR HEAT) THAT HAS BEEN ALLOWED TO COME TO EQUILIBRIUM.”

    I hope that clarifies what I was saying

  137. br1 says:

    Lucy Skywalker:
    “So neither can you explain the Hilsch vortex tube? There has to be something missing in your simulation.”

    Now there’s a challenge! You are right, my simulations so far do not have non-Maxwell-Boltzmann distributions (=input power supplies) and winds/convection, and I don’t think would predict the vortex tube behaviour.

    But they do have molecules traveling up and down in gravitational fields and centrifugal fields, decelerating and accelerating as they do so. That it is possible to get isothermal solutions in these cases shows that there must be something more to it than that.

  138. br1 says:

    Tim Folkerts:
    “I’m not sure what “B&A” paper you might be referring to.”

    It is this book by Bohren and Albrecht:
    http://www.amazon.com/Atmospheric-Thermodynamics-Craig-F-Bohren/dp/0195099044/

    Verkley refers to it in his paper on p932:
    “Bohren and Albrecht arrive at their constraint 3 by starting with a constraint similar to 2′, and then
    modify it in an approximate way, which in fact amounts to replacing 2′ by 3. This way of obtaining 3 can be criticized on the grounds that, had no approximation been made, one would have found an isothermal instead of an isentropic profile”

    Akmaev refers to it here http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/qj.209/abstract p190
    “Bohren and Albrecht (1998), apparently anticipating that P cannot be conserved exactly under condition (2), explicitly assume that the conservation of L approximately implies the conservation of P, as the ratio T/θ = Pi(p) does not change much for sufficiently close p1 and p2. However, this assumption is hardly defensible for any extended layer, because the maximum-entropy temperature profiles corresponding to the two constraints differ drastically (e.g. Verkley and Gerkema, 2004, their figure 2).”

    So both Verkley and Akmaev say that B&A screwed up, and one would get an isothermal profile if one followed their procedure. Akmaev fixes this by pointing out that enthalpy (which he calls P) cannot be conserved when one is performing a variation to find the maximum entropy profile that conserves L. As enthalpy is not conserved in the variation, one needs energy sources and sinks, hence the system cannot be closed.

    On the contrary, when one has a truly closed system (no work, no energy transfer, such as in Graeff’s idealised setup), it is clear that the internal energy, E, must remain constant. This is Verkley constraint 2, which gives an isothermal profile.

  139. Trick says:

    Tim F 5:44am – “B&A Paper”?

    V&G references Bohren and Albrecht 1998 textbook for section 2b non-isothermal LTE enclosed column which I have on order.

    Tim: “That section of air can heat the sections above and below. So now know that any section within the tube should be isothermal, so the whole tube should be isothermal.”

    That section doesn’t fit the V&G Fig. 1 (section 2a) criteria “The column is assumed to exchange no net heat with its surroundings…”.

    The logic of extending Graeff’s dewar column until it is closed or say 1 molecule layer from closure can’t apply as all authors (B&A, V&G, Akmaev) show how physics changes to non-isothermal LTE when column closed to work in/out as in V2b (in the B&A cartoon Fig. you haven’t seen yet).

    Also, the example V&G give is for 1 sq. meter column with air mass = 7,633.9 kg pretty much surface thru troposphere. The B74 dewar is Graeff’s experimental set-up number showing 2b theory w/higher than expected gradient non-isothermal results with powder in the graph above that Lucy detailed in the earlier post 2 of 4 – mentioned in this top post which is 3 of 4 & I see Lucy has 4 of 4 up now.

  140. Lucy Skywalker says, July 5, 2012 at 10:34 pm:

    br1 says: July 5, 2012 at 8:45 pm: “Revving the centrifuge up to 100 ‘g’ such that a density differential of over x100 exists between the inner and outer radius of the centrifuge, one still finds an isothermal answer. So I still can’t find a reason to get a gradient.”

    So neither can you explain the Hilsch vortex tube? There has to be something missing in your simulation.

    Lucy you don’t need br1, who is pursuing a highly questionable centrifuge idea or anybody else here to “explain” the Hilch Vortex Tube. As I said to you in a previous comment when you brought this subject up, the Vortex tube breaks no laws of physics. It is just a highly inefficient form of refrigeration device. Hence its only real use is limited to machine shops and similar places where compressed air is readily available as an energy source. It is used to rapidly cool metal pieces that have been machined and heated up and which need cleaning of metal swarf at the same time, for which it is emminently suited.

    There is nothing remotely mysterious about it. It has no moving parts. It is just a special spiral fitted into the nozzle at the end of an air pressure line. Yes it’s possible to speculate about exactly how it works in terms of the internal fluid dynamics but that does not make it a candidate for violating the laws of thermodynamics or anything else of the remotest esoteric interest. You might as well speculate about how jet engines work internally and then suggest to br1 that he can’t explain them either.

    I’m sorry Lucy. I really don’t mean to be rude but I think you really must come down to earth over all this stuff. Otherwise the fascinating issue of why Graeff has demonstrated a negative temperature gradient in an insulated column of air will simply become devalued. We must separate intuitions of magic and alchemy from the hard realities of physics.

    Or is this just a fun intellectual game we are all playing?

  141. Trick says:

    David Socrates 10:13pm – “Or is this just a fun intellectual game we are all playing?”

    Well, it is a fun game. LOL.

  142. David Socrates says: July 6, 2012 at 10:13 pm

    As I said above, I try to keep a sense of proportion and keep to centre, with the purpose of helping Science regain integrity – and in particular Climate Science. This is my constant skyline goal in my work with Nikolov and Zeller which led to my work with Graeff. As you will see from my last instalment I do come down to earth with replication plans. I’ll email you further. And if you read all my comments, you can see that the contact with real experiments and real experimental results has never been far from either my mind or my comments.

    Since Descartes, Science has built on the (untested, unproven) hypothesis that the observer alone has soul but can judge an external cold reality with experiments and graphs, which obeys the laws of this cold reality (Newtonian, thermodynamic, electrical, molecular). We end up with the “Big Bang” and a whole science which has no room for soul. But as classical psychology knows, and fairy tales tell, what is forcibly excluded, has a way of getting back with a vengeance.

    Therefore the scene was ripe for corruption in Science, as the pushed-out human dimension forcibly reasserted itself. And therefore, blogs are a blessing in that they reintroduce the human scale. But also, as Willis Eschenbach said so memorably, it’s like herding feral cats on (some kind of uppers). At times.

    I get the impression that br1 and Trick and Tim F are largely theorizing, picking up stuff that predates Graeff and “appears” to contradict his actual results. I am not even sure of that, as I get boggled before I can get that far! I try to make an effort to relate to all posters, as in my experience, most bring important and often forgotten dimensions to the discussion, which help me understand things myself, and most importantly, give me clues on what I need to focus on when I try to communicate. Graeff is stuck because of a communication barrier, and I am doing what I can to dismantle this “Berlin Wall”. Hence my remarks on the Hilsch tube. But you can regard them as the throwaway remarks I intended – not for serious distraction for me. Hilsch is a beautiful icon for me, no more, and it was in Graeff’s own journey.

  143. Lucy,

    Well we will have to disagree over whether referring to the Hilch tube is the best way of breaking down barriers rather than erecting unnecessary ones!

    But I do agree that the objective scientific process that for the last couple of hundred years has provided the most astonishing advance in human living standards and wellbeing is now severely in danger of corruption by people with a decidedly non-scentific agenda. Personally, I think it is because there is too much taxpayer money slopping around in the world that should be used to help the poor and disadvantaged but which is instead being channeled all over the place to whichever interest group shouts the loudest – a very human way of behaving but one that certainly does not sit well with the concept of human-progress-through-scientific-advance.

    On br1, Trick and Tim F, you and I have both got them sussed. But you should not be so self-deprecatory about your own supposed lack of technical knowlege. Why should you, a highly intelligent and articulate person, be expected to have all the knowlege of an atmospheric physicist to the point where they don’t feel it necessary communicate clearly in ordinary language? What we should all expect is that people who purport to know a lot about a subject can communcate the answers in a coherent way (a la Richard Feynman). Generally, the intolocutors in this blog trail have shown that they cannot.

    As you know I am a professional electrical engineer so I do know a bit about the laws of thermodynamics. But I am not an atmospheric physicist. Nevertheless I do know how to communicate and pose scientific questions even in unrelated fields and I can tell you that, sadly, these three guys are classic non-communicators of the guru kind (not so much Tim F actually who is clearly the more intellectually mature of the three). Like you I have waited patiently and with some amusement as their chit chat has floated over everybody else’s head for the last few weeks, fully expecting that they would in the end ‘bottom out’ the problem and be able to announce a jointly agreed conclusion. But it hasn’t happened and we are no nearer answering the question posed.

    And look what Trick does when confronted with straight questions. Again and again he quite arrogantly points people off to a scientific paper here, or a dictionary quotation there or whatever, rather than actually answering the question directly himself. Now I think that is a sign of insecurity and weakness. The truth is that he won’t admit he is a bit out of his depth intellectually and technically (hey, just like we all are!). His reaction is to hide behind theoretical publications, the contents of which he may well be misinterpreting.

    And then after all these weeks of discussion he finally he reveals the truth (July 6, 2012 at 10:24 pm): Well, it is a fun game. LOL.).

    So this is just intellectualising for the sake of it, coupled with a complete failure to communcate and consolidate and move forward. It is worthless and I’m out!

    In the meantime, Lucy, do keep writing and investigating. You are doing a great job, as in his own eccentric way is Graeff. Just keep off the Hilch tube and similar beverages – that stuff can so easily go to your head!

  144. Trick says:

    Lucy 9:09am – “…largely theorizing….”appears” to contradict (Graeff’s) actual results..”

    To be clear, my view of the theory is that Graeff’s results with the air experiment as you write about them do not appear to contradict the non-isothermal gradient theory of non-GHG ideal gas columns. Also, my view then is there will be a finding of no need for any modification whatsoever of the 2nd law. Gravity is a force field the 2nd law can handle if test & theory constraints are consistent and physically proper.

    Also, my view is the powder is a needless complication in the B74 experimental set-up. At least, I have not yet run across an experimental or theoretical understandable reason why the powder is introduced.

    Seems to me, a decent understanding of the basic ideal theory is a building block to advance in correctly understanding a way more complicated standard atmosphere lapse rate or gradient. The non-isothermal theory has a lapse rate & the isothermal theory has no lapse rate. It is interesting to discuss & test why that happens.

  145. Tim Folkerts says:

    I was going to write/philosophize/editorialize some more, but I think David summed it up pretty well @ 10:44 AM.

    On to bigger and better things, like projecting the minimum ice extent (which I now think will set a new record low, BTW).

  146. Tim Folkerts says: July 6, 2012 at 5:09 am | Reply w/ Link

    Lucy says: “Tim F, I do agree with you that the ocean is a mystery. ”

    But that is the point! The ocean is no mystery at all!

    My bad wording. What I should have said was, it is a mystery why the atmosphere shows a negative temperature gradient (ALR) and the ocean does not – and I mean, a mystery given the reality of Graeff’s experimental results.

    I note you have answered my mis-wirding, but have not answered my other points.

  147. Trick

    The glass powder in the Dewar with air is to prevent convection, or at least lessen it so much as to have less power than gravity in establishing a temperature gradient.

    Pure and simple.

    Without the powder, we’d be measuring the DALR likely in the geometry of a Dewar. The thermocouples won’t catch it and anyway we know DALR quite well enough already.

  148. David, thanks for the heads-up.

  149. br1 says:

    Lucy Skywalker:
    “I get the impression that br1 and Trick and Tim F are largely theorizing, picking up stuff that predates Graeff and “appears” to contradict his actual results.”

    Speaking for myself, my main contribution has been the Slideshare presentations (now numbering five) I have given links to several times. These were simulations I wrote *after* I met Graeff a year and a half ago, explicitly to find out from a theoretical point of view what the gradient ‘should’ be, and how much power could in principle be extracted from one of Graeff’s gravity machines. I put into the simulations all the ingredients I thought would be necessary – gravity, molecules accelerating and decelerating as they changed height in the gravitational field, and some temperature statistics to describe a real gas. I also simulated gases including finite size molecules, mixtures of different mass molecules, collisions and inter-molecule attraction. I then took time to back up the simulations with analytic math solutions. It is with regret that I say that I can’t find a way to get a temperature gradient for ‘free’. In the simulations or maths, any temperature gradient always needs a power supply, and gravity alone is not enough.

    So I keep looking for how Graeff’s experiment actually has a temperature gradient. I still have a couple of ideas I’d like to pursue to a conclusion. However, replication would be great – I hope the US replication goes ahead!

  150. Q. Daniels says:

    br1,

    I took another look at some of your math, and dropped a comment on the first Graeff thread. I’m not sure log(1-rand) is correct. Also, I get a positive temperature gradient for non-interacting gases, which shouldn’t be right.

  151. br1 says:

    David Socrates:

    I’ll talk to you at whatever level you wish. What are your current views on a temperature gradient due to gravity? At one point you seemed to think there could be one, but then you didn’t seem so sure.

    You asked:
    “I thought that knowing the values of 3 of those 4 variables at one level (say ground on Earth) one should surely enable one to derive the temperature Tz at any height z above ground. But I soon realised exactly what you said. The Gas Laws are not enough to determine it. The question is: what is?

    There are quite a few derivations of an isothermal profile of a column of gas under gravity, starting from the thermodynamic equations. I prefer to think in terms of molecules bouncing around, accelerating and decelerating. What do you make of my own derivation:

    http://www.slideshare.net/brslides/analytic-velocity-distribution-under-gravity

    As Graeff measures a gradient, where do you think it might come from?

  152. br1 says:

    Q. Daniels:
    “I took another look at some of your math, and dropped a comment on the first Graeff thread. I’m not sure log(1-rand) is correct. Also, I get a positive temperature gradient for non-interacting gases, which shouldn’t be right.”

    Great! Someone checking things out. I’ll reply to you on the other thread, but I might have to go in a minute, hopefully I’ll get to it within the next day.

  153. David Springer says:

    Don’t know if you have this bookmarked here but it’s uber relevant to Graef, by name, in a good way. Written by a couple legit physics profs one in Germany one at U of San Diego. Springer-Verla – $249

    Four full pages in this section starting pg 202 on Loschmidt gravito-thermal effect. Three of those pages talk about Graef and conclude saying his work experiment serious attention and replicaiton in independent labs. Unfortunately pg. 203 is restricted so you don’t get the whole book for free and is the first page discussing Graef.

    The other three pages are solid gold and no one interested in this should not read it.

    Really excellent writing and illustrations too, Lucy Skywalker. If you’re not a pro you could be.

    Classy joint ya got here, Tallbloke. Too much so for a serial disruptor like me. I hope you at least publish this though.

    http://books.google.com/books?id=-nWyk7jH5_EC&pg=PA202&lpg=PP1

    “Challenges to the Second Law of Thermodyanmics: Theory and Experiment” Springer-Verlag 2005