## Wayne Jackson: New Identity Linking Meteorological Phenomena

Posted: November 25, 2012 by tallbloke in Analysis, atmosphere, general circulation, Measurement, methodology, Natural Variation, solar system dynamics

Err, wow…. I think. Wayne Jackson has been mostly absent  over the last six months but obviously not idle. Now he has dropped in on an old thread of Stephen Wilde’s and left this remarkable comment:

Sorry it has taken me six months to reply to this thread Stephen but it has taken a LOT of digging to get myself a handle on what really matters in planetary atmosphere temperature profiles. I have picked up a lot of clues from many including gallopingcamel, Nikolov & Zeller, Miskolczi, Ramanathan and the CERES team, even Huffman, but none of them seemed to give the complete, 100%, answer but each had hints in their texts.

gallopingcamel said:
“The derivation of the adiabatic lapse rate is taught in high schools and provides an explanation of the observed temperature gradient in Earth’s atmosphere.”

Absolutely. I have come to realize that a lapse rate is a terrible metric to use if you are striving to describe an atmosphere, it is the pressure ratio between two layers and the mean heat capacity ratio (λ=Cp/Cv) adjusted for the natural greenhouse function (1 minus 1/3) that exactly describes each atmosphere. The GH adjustment is therefore G=2/3 for optically thick atmospheres.

This line of thought derives from some topics: heat capacity ratio (λ), degrees of freedom of molecules (DOF), heat capacities (Cp & Cv), speed of sound in gases, potential temperature ( Φ=T(P0/P)^(R/Cp) ), and equipartition of energy per mode bi-directionally, always.

Take earth by the ’76 Standard Atmosphere or the ISA, at 11020 meters the temperature there and upward is 216.65K. The pressure here is 22629 Pa. Our atmosphere is predominately composed of linear di and tri atomic molecules setting the Cp/Cv to be right at 1.4 decreased very slightly for the IR active components and most importantly at their concentration.

G=2/3

On Earth:

Mean DOF (degrees of freedom) = 5.008
λ = 1+2/DOF
(note: DOF = 2/( λ-1)
P0 = 22629
216.65‹K› * (101325 / P0)^(G * (λ-1)/λ)
288.156‹K›

On Venus:

Mean DOF = 5.77
λ = 1+2/DOF
P0 = 1‹atm›
338.3‹K› * (92‹atm› / P0)^(G * (λ-1)/λ)
735.002‹K›

( By the way, the 5.77 DOF was from some actual lab experiments to measure CO2’s effective Cp. This derived value came from a Cp/Cv of approximately within error of 1.3466. Remember, CO2 is linear and has no permanent moment dipole)

You can plug in any pressure level for either atmosphere and you will find the temperature at that pressure level will always very closely match (+/- 0.1°C) either Earth’s standard atmosphere or Venus’s International Reference Atmosphere (VIRA) very closely, too close to ignore. I digitized a plot of the VIRA atmosphere from a peer reviewed paper and the values are close to 735.1K at surface at 92‹atm› and the other end at 60 km and 23093 Pa where the temperature is 262.5‹K›.

Caveat One: It seems logical to me that this relation with a G of 2/3 should only hold for atmospheres where the per-line tau or optical thickness is greater than one, maybe even much greater than one. Earth’s mean tau is 1.87 and it seems to hold by this relationship so that seems to give us a somewhat scale of magnitude.

Caveat Two: Why the G=2/3? In one respect that seems logical also. The surface has an energy pressing upward and at most lines are all absorbed at some level, matters not where, and that absorption likewise presses both downward and upward to space. You get two pressures within the atmosphere and one pressure to space giving you the 2/3. That’s a bit simplistic but that’s one explanation. The other might be that horizontal radiation within the atmosphere itself is always bound and guaranteed absorption since horizontally all strong radiation lines are homogenous. That would give 4/6th or 2/3rd, six being possible directions in three dimensional space and all other radiation not included in this 4/6th is destined to escape upward, the 1/3rd portion. All of this would require proper differential analysis of course but each in its own right seems logical macroscopically viewing the atmosphere as a single element.

Caveat Three: Does this hold for each and every thick planetary atmosphere?
Don’t know about Saturn and Jupiter yet, and here is why you don’t want to get dragged into thinking that lapse rates are anything but descriptive (not causal) in nature. Both of those gas giants have a much lower environmental lapse rate but due to their huge size and gravitational pull the pressure ratios across levels are much further apart in kilometers than on the Earth or Venus and so even though pressure level to pressure level ratios are close to the Earth and Venus, looking at temperatures, the lapse rates are far apart in value. Watch out.

Another thing I have learned is that just by knowing the speed of sound and the mean molar mass of an atmosphere you can, along with Van der Waals adjustments, get the empirical λ which is much better than relying on idealistic theoretical values. Maybe one day NASA can lower an explosive charge to explode on the surface and actually measure Venus’s mean speed of sound vertically across its atmosphere so we can get as actual mean λ and DOF which would add credence to this.

And that brings me to why CO2 levels have but a minuscule influence on Earth’s mean surface temperature, the 5.008 might increase to say something like 5.018 due to the doubling of CO2 from 0.039% but that only budges the surface temperature, and get this, downward by less than 0.1°C. This assumes the isothermal portion of the lower stratosphere maintains the same temperature.

You might wonder how the exponent R/Cp in the potential temperature equation ended up as (λ-1)/ λ.

Under http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Heat_capacity_ratio
Cp = λnR/(λ-1)
We are dealing molar so n=1, drop it, and therefore flip Cp:
1/Cp = (λ-1)/(λR)
therefore:
R/Cp = (λ-1)/λ

Add the G and it at least matches the entire profiles for both Earth and Venus with correct heat capacity ratios applied and that is where I became VERY interested in this relationship, very curious as to why. I thought you and gallopingcamel might be curious too.

Something seems amiss; something besides CO2 increased the temperature in the last few decades. Could it have been the sun after all in some manner?

Maybe this might give someone the push to read and help me understand this process a bit deeper for I’m rather new to meteorology, thermodynamics and climatology.

If someone knows why this relationship exists please let me know.

But, I am still digging along this line of evidence.

One more note on G=2/3. Ramanathan(1987?) listed the g at 0.332, Miskolczi (2007) lists the g of 0.333. I just took the more than evident of g=exactly 1/3 to give the G as 1-1/3 or 2/3. Assuming here a simple geometric explanation which may not be really true.

1. wayne says:

Thank you tallbloke!

That sure will make it easier to discuss. I’m anxious to hear any input, any explanations (I have not many), or even the reason why this matters nothing at all. I keep trying to convince myself that this is nothing new, just another way to derive a modified adiabatic relationship but I’ve failed miserably so far in convincing myself. It keeps saying there’s something deeper here.

2. tallbloke says:

Wayne: Your study and insight is paying off now. This looks important to me, and I hope it turns out to be. I’ve alerted a few people to the post. Hopefully you’ll get some expert input when Europe wakes up again tomorrow.

“Could it have been the sun after all in some manner?”

3. tchannon says:

Is this related to optical depth, which has been mentioned in various places?

4. wayne says:

tchannon: Is this related to optical depth, which has been mentioned in various places?

Hmm… yes and no I would think.

If you have an atmosphere so thin that absorption/re-emission up and down is so rare (τ<<1) I don’t see how this relation with G equal two-thirds would hold. So does it have to do with optical depth? There yes.

On the other hand, there are no terms in this simple equation having anything to do with τ (tau) or radiation, just a base temperature, pressure ratio, and this curious heat capacity ratio in the exponent. So I guess there it is no, the atmosphere just has to be ‘thick’ and in LTE.

5. wayne says:

Also tchannon, this equation seems to only hold within a troposphere, the portion where the linear mean lapse exist. I noticed that VIRA’s profile from the ground up to the tropopause on Venus is not exactly linear; there is a slight bow between about 30km to 50km where there exists an always-present cloud levels. Here that equation would have an error equal to the additional extra energy help within this layer… that is, the gases there will naturally have more degrees of freedom from H20, SO2, H2SO4, etc that are not linear molecules with more degrees of freedom and also sometimes more atoms… that exponent would go lower there. I guess integrated layer by layer using the correct lamda (which we really don’t have empirically) at each segment it seems that would then track this bow in the lapse rate. I don’t know, have never tried that, but that definitely goes on my TODO list.

6. Brian H says:

At last! A robust formulation which pegs CO2 sensitivity at <0. The reasoning in Cao http://www.tech-know.eu/uploads/JCao_N2O2GreenGases_Blog.pdf was always persuasive to me, and never meaningfully addressed.

7. Brian H, can get to http://www.tech-know.eu (which seems to be German) but nothing there. Can find a Jian Cao on the net -seems a real clever lady but can not see anything remotely like a paper on greenhouse gases in her long mechanical engineeering/ engineering materials publications list.
The name Cao seemed familiar saw in my files an article by Jinan Cao on errors in the use of the Stefan Boltzman equation but I do not know where it came from. It could have been the JoNova blog (http://joannenova.com.au/) because Dr David Evans (Jo’s husband) is mentioned in the acknowledgements.

8. Was right the paper, I mentioned above, is included in this post http://joannenova.com.au/2012/09/do-greenhouse-gases-warm-the-planet-by-33c-jinan-cao-checks-the-numbers/
Cao has not considered or made any reference to the work of Prof Hoyt Hotel but referenced others such as Hansen, Pierrehumbert and Trenberth who have no understanding of heat transfer. I do not agree based on empirical tests with some assumptions.

9. tallbloke says:

Wayne:
” there are no terms in this simple equation having anything to do with τ (tau) or radiation, just a base temperature, pressure ratio, and this curious heat capacity ratio in the exponent. So I guess there it is no, the atmosphere just has to be ‘thick’ and in LTE.”

To avoid confusion, would it be better to refer to ‘dense atmospheres’ rather than ‘thick atmospheres’? The radiative physics people talk about ‘optically thick atmospheres’.

I can do an edit if you agree.

10. wayne says:

Sure thing tallbloke, I agree that would have been a better term there. If I knew this was to attain a ‘top-post’ status I would have critiqued it more, but bear with me, this is still somewhat a work in progress. Everyone can feel free to add to or alter if they have some better insight.

11. tallbloke says:

Wayne: OK. You use the term ‘thick’ three times in your article, quoted below. You decide how to reword the passages and I’ll edit them in.

“The GH adjustment is therefore G=2/3 for optically thick atmospheres.”

“Caveat One: It seems logical to me that this relation with a G of 2/3 should only hold for atmospheres where the per-line tau or optical thickness is greater than one, maybe even much greater than one. Earth’s mean tau is 1.87 and it seems to hold by this relationship so that seems to give us a somewhat scale of magnitude.”

“Caveat Three: Does this hold for each and every thick planetary atmosphere?”

12. tallbloke says:

Wayne:
On Earth:

Mean DOF (degrees of freedom) = 5.008
λ = 1+2/DOF
(note: DOF = 2/( λ-1)
P0 = 22629
216.65‹K› * (101325 / P0)^(G * (λ-1)/λ)
= 288.156‹K›

On Venus:

Mean DOF = 5.77
λ = 1+2/DOF
P0 = 1‹atm›
338.3‹K› * (92‹atm› / P0)^(G * (λ-1)/λ)
= 735.002‹K›

Should we clarify that the 216.65K for Earth and the 338.3K for Venus are the average surface temperatures for planetary bodies without atmospheres at their astronomical distances from the Sun?

13. BenAW says:

gallopingcamel said:
“The derivation of the adiabatic lapse rate is taught in high schools and provides an explanation of the observed temperature gradient in Earth’s atmosphere.”

Absolutely.

Wayne, could you expand on how you see the ALR explaining the temperature gradient in Earth’s atmosphere? The ALR is based on the Ideal Gas Law, which is only valid for CLOSED systems.
(no heat exchange with its surroundings)
We can hardly call the atmosphere a closed system. It can expand freely against gravity with increasing temperature, and there is a heat flow from the surface through the atmosphere to space.
Imo the ELR (Environmental Lapse Rate) is just a measure of how efficient the surface can loose it’s heat to space. And of course no heating of the surface by the atmosphere. (lower temeprature and heat capacity of the total atmosphere is equal to just ~ 3 meter of water)

I do agree that the role of CO2 (apart from being plantfood) is a (minuscule) cooling one, especially in damp or cloudy situations.

14. wayne says:

tb, not really, I might have thrown you there. Those are just two random examples I drew out of my head that are both on there respective accepted profiles and might be readily recognizable for everyone familiar with all of the climatology discussions. However, the Earth example is based at Earth’s TOA or tropopause and the Venus example is not, it is based at the same pressure as Earth at sea level pressure. I could have easily equivalently based the Venus example at 60km, 262.5K at 23093 Pa pressure. That would have also ended up at 735K at the surface. You see, this is very generic relationship; you can base it, T0 and P0, anywhere within the atmosphere. Originally as I developed this I had always been basing the equation at the surface and computing temperatures above, either way holds true.

You might notice this is the correction and confirmation of Harry Dale Huffman’s work but it seems I have unintentionally extended it, the temperature ends up (also per VIRA) right at 338K and if you adjust it for Venus’s closer orbit you get 338.3*√0.723 — right at 288K.

You seem to be more asking for what N&K have already computed in their paper with best estimate of emissivities for each or maybe I might not be understanding the tie you seem to be making.

15. tallbloke says:

Ah, OK. I saw the figures and jumped to a conclusion. My bad. 🙂

16. wayne says:

@BenAW. Hi Ben, been a while.

Can you show me the one ideal gas equation from base parameters at one point that calculates the ADL (adiabatic lapse rate) value for a planet? If I am not mistaken, you can’t, for I could never come up with it either and tried for many months, but, we do know by temperature and altitude measurement (and radiosondes) there is a very real ADL in the atmosphere that deviates from the DALR by some incalculable amount. That is why I tend to view the ADL is but a descriptive metric, not causal of changes in the atmosphere.

The ADL is sort of like a proxy to this real and calculable relation only you need pressure readings, not altitude readings. See the difference? That is why I found this relation so surprising. This, by pressure ratio, not K per distance, does allow you to precisely read the profile anywhere in the troposphere and this can be viewed, sort of, as potential temperature logarithmically scaled but only affecting 2/3 of the isentropic value, energy IS always on the average moving upward everywhere and always in the troposphere. That energy flow upward seems a bit as the g=1/3 I spoke of.

Why? I still don’t really know for sure. There is no denying that equation, it holds for both planets with one planet specific exponent value and it immediately seemed basically what potential temperature defines only potential temperature phi is dry and has no energy gained or loss, the real atmosphere is moist and does have energy flowing.

17. Robert Fife says:

20-20 analysis Wayne! If we can understand “what really matters in planetary atmosphere temperature profiles” Mother Earth – and our understanding of global climate change – will be the first to benefit.

18. Stephen Wilde says:

“could you expand on how you see the ALR explaining the temperature gradient in Earth’s atmosphere? The ALR is based on the Ideal Gas Law, which is only valid for CLOSED systems
(no heat exchange with its surroundings).”

I always thought of the planet / atmosphere energy exchange as a closed loop at any given level of solar input.

The energy going from ground to air and air to ground always seeks to net out to zero taking it globally. That is why the Ideal Gas Law works. It is a dynamic energy exchange so if the outturn is not zero the system reconfigures to make it so.

It also accounts for the discrepancy with S-B. The value of that ground / air energy exchange. would always match the discrepancy from S-B.

No atmosphere, no ground / air energy exchange and S-B works out.

Add more solar input and you immediately get more longwave output to match it with the ground / air exchange remaining exactly the same as long as atmospheric mass and the strength of the gravitational field stay the same.That is because the speed of energy throughput rises to match the extra solar input. One consequence is an expanded atmosphere as the extra solar energy lifts the atmosphere further off the surface. That expansion negates the surface temperature rise that would otherwise have occurred.

The distance from surface to top of atmosphere increases instead of the surface temperature rising or the slope of the lapse rate changing. If the atmosphere did not expand then the length of that distance would not increase and then there would be a surface temperature rise because the slope of the lapse rate would have to change instead.

That underlying reality is obscured by the fact that in practice the atmosphere is made up of multiple layers which all contain lapse rates different from the one predicted by pressure and insolation. In the end though, if the atmosphere is to be retained they must all net out to the basic (ideal) lapse rate over time.

Due to the properties (composition) of ground, oceans and air the outgoing longwave cannot immediately match the new level of incoming solar so in the interim one sees a change in the circulation of the atmosphere altering the rate of energy flow through the system until once more energy out equals energy in.

During the adjustment process one sees shifting climate zones with surface temperature varying a little but in due course the previous equilibrium is restored except that by then something else has changed so the adjustmnt proces never stops.

And the adjustment process is always a negative system response.

I have to say that I thought this was common knowledge 50 years ago.

The primary influences on climate change (cliumate zone shifts) are therefore top down solar and bottom up oceanic effects with CO2 from human emissions being unmeasurable in comparison.

Even vast volcanic outbreaks and asteroid strikes have never broken the negative system response.

19. tallbloke says:

Wayne:
I noticed that VIRA’s profile from the ground up to the tropopause on Venus is not exactly linear; there is a slight bow between about 30km to 50km where there exists an always-present cloud levels. Here that equation would have an error equal to the additional extra energy help within this layerK

The radiative theory has the same problem. It will be interesting to see whether the problem is of the same magnitude in both theories.

20. Stephen Wilde says:

Actually I’m not entirely happy with my previous post since I should distinguish between the effect of more solar input and the effect of a change in composition.

Will give it more thought and no doubt others will comment.

21. tallbloke says:

“A Discrete Ordinate, Multiple Scattering, Radiative Transfer Model of the Venus
Atmosphere from 0.1 to 260 mm,” C. Lee and M.I. Richardson, J Atm Sci (June 2011) 1323-1339.

Click to access LeeAndRichardson11.pdf

I note that to get around the same problem around 500mb they suggest the following fudge factors in the conclusion:
“We suggest that the lower atmosphere con-
vective adjustment may be better parameterized sepa-
IR cooling term be included in the parameterization.”

And who can blame them? They have to get it to work somehow…

22. Stephen Wilde says:

Ok, further thoughts:

“I always thought of the planet / atmosphere energy exchange as a closed loop at any given level of solar input.”

If one simply raises solar input then one gets both a rise in surface temperature and a rise in the height of the atmosphere with the (ideal) lapse rate remaining the same.

If one changes the composition of the air with say more GHGs then the rise in the height of the atmosphere leads to a change in the slope of the actual (not the ideal) lapse rate at the levels in the atmosphere where the changes occur.

The circulation then reconfigures to alter the energy flow rates to remove the discrepancy and a temperature rise at the surface is not required.

Interestingly one could get a similar effect from a change in the composition of particles and wavelengths arriving from the sun which would have a knock on effect on the composition of the atmosphere.

So, assuming the energy content of incoming solar energy stays the same a change in the composition of that incoming solar energy can result in changes to the composition of the atmosphere (for example changes in ozone) which will change the volume of the atmosphere and the slope of the actual lapse rate in the same way as more GHGs would change it.

Thus the system response to both more GHGs and changes in the mix of wavelengths and particles from the sun would be to alter the actual lapse rates up through the atmophere and the atmosphere must then reconfigure to offset the effect and maintain stability.

Shifting climate zones would be the observed response in both cases.

Note that changes in the rate of energy release from the oceans operate by affecting atmospheric composition too via increased evaporation so again the system response would be shifting climate zones.

Therefore, more solar input, more atmospheric mass and a stronger gravitational field will affect the surface temperature and set the slope of the ideal lapse rate.

All changes in composition from whatever cause give a change in the actual lapse rates at various levels and that resaults in a change in circulation that prevents an increase in surface temperature over time because those changes are capable of removing the discrepancy between the ideal lapse rate and the net sum of the multiple actual lapse rates at different heights.

23. clivebest says:

@tallbloke “I noticed that VIRA’s profile from the ground up to the tropopause on Venus is not exactly linear; there is a slight bow between about 30km to 50km where there exists an always-present cloud levels. ”

CO2 absorbs very little of the surface IR on Venus, despite the all the hype of a run-away CO2 greenhouse effect. This is due to Wien’s displacement law. Just 2% of the Planck spectrum at 720K lies within the main CO2 absorption band ! However higher up in the atmosphere, exactly that corresponding to the bulge in lapse rate , the absorbed fraction reaches 20% between ~ 350-250K. So I think the bulge is caused by the sudden increase in thermal radiation absorption by CO2 molecules. The atmosphere is 95% CO2 and opaque to absorption band wavelengths.

24. Trick says:

wayne on Fraud of GHE thread 11/26 12:16 am: “Trick, the (λ) within is the isentropic expansion factor and this brings back to mind all of the discussion nearly a year ago on whether and atmosphere has an inherent natural lapse or not. You might take a look if you don’t mind. I’m open for any comments or explanations; I can’t seem to answer ‘why’”

tallbloke – thanks for new thread if only to change the title, meme & ease up on my browser. This thread theme seems to be the lapse rate.

wayne – I went back and took a look at the Verkley/Gerkema paper that TB had posted around here in those tall air column threads. For the isentropic profile, with the ideal lapse rate T(P)/To = (P(z)/Po)^R/Cp, Verkley et. al. tropospheric column shows for P=1000hPa the surface temp. as 302.04K vs. your 288.156K.

Click to access verkely2004.pdf

I’m curious about that difference, can you expand? Isentropic but not max. entropy maybe?

Also, I don’t see right off where the “natural greenhouse function (1 minus 1/3)” comes from.

25. wayne says:

Hey Trick. Looking back at the Verkley paper let me show you basically what I am ask others to help me discover why the curious factor of right at 2/3 converts both planet’s DALR to the ELR and of course with an ELR that defines the profile. Or, conversely, you can say this modified potential temperature equation defines the profile, really they both do. (See: Verkly Sec 2., eighth line).

Take their adiabatic curve *guessing 600 hPa is crossover, never seems stated)
261.36*(1000/600)^(.2832) = 302.04
It requires a heat capacity ratio in the exponent of 0.2832.

Now lets make it equal to the std. atmosphere value of 288.15:
261.36*(1000/600)^(.1911) = 288.16
It requires 0.1911.

What is the ratio of 0.1911/0.2832?
0.6748, vary close to the same 2/3 I keep coming up with when I get as precise as possible.

Now do you see my question of whether this is actually 2/3, is just close, or depends on each atmospheres? Venus seems to be very close if you use the correct cherry-picked initial heat capacity (that is right at some experimental CO2 heat capacity) but so far I don’t place complete trust in that conjecture.

26. wayne says:

Trick, also, the 1-1/3 at this point is just a possible candiadate, a conjecture of sort, to try to explain the ratio that keep rearing its head, 0.332, 0.333, exactly 2/3, and on the rough example i did on Verkley would be 0.326 (and, oh, that 288.15K is at 1013.25 hPa ,not 1000 kPa so there is a bit of the variance) Reworking at 1013.25 would give a apx. ratio of 0.658 instead of 0.675.

27. Trick says:

wayne 4:01 pm: “What is the ratio of 0.1911/0.2832?”

Cp/Cp ! It is the rough ratio based on chart read est. of Cp Earth troposphere atm. w/environmental lapse to Cp of Earth atm. in equilibrium with exact lapse rate.

Does this have physical meaning? I don’t see any at 1st, but the ratios with R and gamma in the relations with DOF of constituent molecules maybe could find something. See line 6 of Verkley Section 2.

That it works seems at first look to be just an artifact of the fundamental details. Might be valuable as a thumb rule for an exo-planet atm. For example, to find the DOF of constituent molecules or env. lapse of a distant planet from its ideal lapse -just use the natural GH 2/3 of perfect GH factor.

28. wayne says:

I guess the most curious aspect I found is merely this; when the exponent is arraigned and solved for degrees of freedom instead of heat capacity ratios by that simple equation, DOF=2/(λ-1), you then are left with:
T =T0(P0/P)^(4/(3*(DOF+2)))

Earth DOF=5.009:
216.65*(101325/22629)^(4/(3*(DOF+2))) = 288.14 K

Venus DOF=5.77:
338.3*(92/1)^(4/(3*(DOF+2))) = 735.00 K
262.5*((92*101325)/23093)^(4/(3*(DOF+2))) = 735.1 K

I was just very surprised by how close the degrees of freedoms were to each other, one atmosphere being predominantly N2&O2, the other CO2. That is really what has kept me looking deeper and deeper. The DOF for Venus implies a mere 0.77 portion of the vibrational modes being active.

I also suppose another possibility is that somewhere in the equations moving from R/Cp using Cp=λnR/(λ-1) or λ=1+2/DOF or DOF=2/(λ-1) there is some reason these cannot be applied in this manner.

Sigh, I guess a more complete test would to tackle Jupiter and maybe Saturn if enough data is available for two points on the linear portions of the profiles, gathering both temperature and pressure at each of those points. That might better tell if there is really something here or not.

Let’s just say I found it very surprising on multiple fronts.

29. wayne says:

On the brighter side: now you have one simple equation, that just by remembering 5.01 and 5.77 for Earth and Venus you can now get a very close temperature, close to the standard values, at any pressure level on either. Now, isn’t that by itself sweet? 😉 🙄

30. tchannon says:

Looks like I linked to some Jupiter data. Figure 4 and just after
https://tallbloke.wordpress.com/2011/12/25/palestine-sagan-and-atmospheric-physics/

The Jupiter data is not in the usual places, is fragmented. Apparently some is lost after researchers died without publishing or making available.

Going from memory the probe used several sensors, with different pressure ranges. I think some information is derived. Particularly note the probe failed, was leaking gas into the insides. There seems to have been much researched.

31. tallbloke says:

I think it’s a very interesting result because it establishes the principle that the atmospheres can be described and calculated without the need to discuss LW radiation. This is a step forward towards a better climate model IMO.

With David Cosserats hemispheric integration technique, and an ocean coupling function, we can put it together I think.

32. wayne says:

tchannon, fantastic. Great graph of Jupiter’s profile! Detailed enough to get some pretty close values.

If you notice, that graph is in temperature against distances and not against pressure and that is where this gets more tedious. By digitizing the ends of the linear portion you can get the lapse but that is geostatic and not geopotential heights and you don’t know the pressure levels. So, you have to do what the ’76 Std Atm code does, feed in all pertinent parameters, Jupiter’s radius, gravitational acceleration, mean molar mass of the gases, etc and program a “Jupiter Standard Atmosphere” matching that profile. Now from the geopotential heights you can get the pressures and that will feed into that equation above to test it.

Neat, I’ll start it now and let’s see where it leads us in Jupiter’s case. I’m really curious, once again, what the d.o.f. reports. Are it’s vibrational modes also subdued, or, are the values no where real and the Earth and Venus case is just an easy way to get their pressure-temperature values?

However, right now I have no doubt that a single number in the exponent will match the profile, it’s just does that single value have any underlying scientific meaning. That is what I keep asking myself over and over again.

33. tchannon says:

Ah but the pressure data is provided. Should be on disk here, see what I can do.

34. Doug Proctor says:

So the radiative forcing for a doubling of CO2 from 282 ppmv is +/- -0.1C?

And with our atmosphere as it was at 282 ppmv CO2-time, with a SI of ??, the net result is a surface temperature of 288.2K, or 15.2C? Which it currently is, if 14.5C is the reference temperature of the IPCC and we have a 0.8C rise since the 1880 reference point?

35. Trick says:

tallbloke 11/26 12:15 pm: “..there is a slight bow between about 30km to 50km..”

Curious about the Mariner radio occultation experiments, I pulled some of the original papers from which that chart was introduced. They were only able to measure Venus atm. density down to around 35km altitude due to signal strength &/or timing for round trip signal think it was; that’s why the chart you posted notes the “extrapolate overlay” – the much straighter lower part.

That splice pasting the instrument record to calculations near 35km – where have we seen that before? Ha. Those papers used lapse = -g/Cp and talk about that formula as if it were golden; they also use P=density*R*T to get the upper part once knowing the density.

Here approx. env. lapse ~ -332/41 = -8.1 K/km.

[co-moderator: I did the splice as a way of manufacturing a usable plot for a general article left I hope with it clear what had been done. Actual data for Venus seems to be missing. The Soviet managed to get probes to the surface but had very minimal temperature resolution, the USA didn’t succeed but that did give what they have published. I took the often accepted surface K and faked it up.
A context btw is a rapidly put together long post to try and take some heat off Rog and his missus.

Jupiter is another can of stuff.

Your comment in a general context: I totally agree which includes anyone should pick me up if I mislead. Go further, I am careful about axis ranges, go to a lot of trouble. Still not formal works though.
So thank you for pointing this out.

Tim]

36. tchannon says:

Found the main file and a couple of unpublished plots which might be of interest

Jupiter showing the thermosphere downwards without the conventional 90 degree turn used with these plots.

This is a composite showing against pressure for Jupiter with a by eye overlay of Venus same information.

Now I’ll try and figure out what data to put up.

37. suricat says:

TB.

Tell me if you think I’m ‘thick’, but I’ve always understood ‘G’ to equal the average ‘gravitational constant’ of Earth???

What else does it signify?

If people come up with a constant that says ‘G = 2/3’, I ‘may’ assume they mean that Earth’s gravity is ‘two thirds’ of its normal value. How can this be? Well, if we take the rate of atmospheric ‘mass turnover’ into account, this may well have some validity.

If water vapour could exist, individually, as a ‘separate gas’, it would display a density of ~3/5ths that of dry air. We only need to add an amount of ‘dry convection’ to this and we may well arrive at the figure of 2/3, with 1/3 overcoming gravity. 🙂 Just a thought, otherwise this could just be a geometric phenomenon.

Also, the ‘squiggle’ in the ‘cloud regional altitudes’ is (I’ve always believed) due to the release of ‘latent heat’ as a gas changes phase to a liquid, and the reason why a planet can exhibit its ‘main radiation’ well ‘above’ the surface (when its ‘surface/lower altitudes’ are subjected to evaporative cooling).

Best regards, Ray.

38. Trick says:

co-mod Tim: “ I did the splice….”

Nice work Tim. Seems like I’ve seen it spliced before elsewhere but maybe not. Here’s a Magellan probe paper for ya’ may be able to trace some reduced data thru the paper or ref.s or later pub.s. I scanned thru, not obvious. Oh man, Jenkins had e-mail address in 1993. Still working??

39. tchannon says:

Jupiter data in xls for portability

https://tallbloke.files.wordpress.com/2012/11/jupiter-data-1.xls

Sheet lower is probably the one you want.

40. Trick says:

Co-mod Tim: “The Soviet managed to get probes to the surface but had very minimal temperature resolution…”

I’ll say. Venera had bit-per-sec. transmission speed. Note bit is not plural.

And worse, the instrument bus channel had to be switched to pick up Temperature & send it, then switch channels back and take Pressure reading and send it. The measurements were not simultaneous so different altitudes and early probe “thermometers had ranges of 210-730° K”. The development of the parachute is really funny, in the end they just let it plop down thru the thick atm.

They were not too sure what they would find and even “In 1967…one MIT paper that year suggested the planet could be experiencing an Ice Age!”

Interesting further reading on Venera series:

http://www.mentallandscape.com/V_Venus.htm

41. wayne says:

tchannon, I found the Galileo Probe pressure data, thanks. Perfect. Plotting the log pressure vs the temps gives us one quite long perfectly strait line from about 7 bar to 22.5 bar pressure levels. Above that level you have this large hook that turns eventually into a negative temperature response and those portions of course won’t follow a single linear plot without breaking into multiple segments as they did in the US76SA. But right now, not trying to reproduce all of these atmospheres in completeness, I’m only interested in the deeper sections anyway and this is a good data set there. (I do see the ‘puffing’ malfunction in the data as it goes deeper but most of the bulk of the data is sticking right on the linear line.)
http://atmos.nmsu.edu/pdsd/archive/data/gp-j-nep-3-entry-v10/gp_0001/data/asi/d04p3.tab

Now should be able (maybe after some sleep) to bypass writing a program for that data gives us both the temp and pressure ranges to coerce out that characteristic exponent value.

42. wayne says:

Ok suricat, I get the point☺, your probably right. I should have picked a better symbol not to possibly confuse (G for greenhouse being what it seems to be related to, definitely not gravity), just call it something better, gamma, beta, zeta, right now it is just a unit-less scalar (but may be wrong).

43. wayne says:

Wow, oh, wow (like tb, I think)! You gentlemen are not going to believe this. At first I didn’t either. Remember the equation above, here is Jupiter’s d.o.f. value that makes this equation match the temperatures found at a given pressure like for Earth and Venus above:

dof = 3
λ = (dof+2)/dof
T = 390.65 * (20494/22494)^(2/3*(λ-1)/λ) = 381.07 K

Here’s the lines of the Galileo data used:

``` Time    RawP  PAdj    P     T
3320.2  20368   141  20509 381.05
3502.2  22346   148  22494 390.65
```

When it landed basically directly on 3.000 for the degrees of freedom I thought at first this was impossible for Jupiter’s atmosphere. That implies an atmosphere totally of noble gases right? But Jupiter’s atmosphere is mainly H2. Could the rotational modes of H2 not being expressed themselves somehow just like CO2’s vibrational modes seem to be subdued? Am I reading this wrong? That is, if that equation is also correct. Is the function still not correct or that 2/3 not really correct?

Well, found this in Wikipedia on hydrogen and this might just explain why just three degrees expressed:

Maxwell observed that the specific heat capacity of H2 unaccountably departs from that of a diatomic gas below room temperature and begins to increasingly resemble that of a monatomic gas at cryogenic temperatures. According to quantum theory, this behavior arises from the spacing of the (quantized) rotational energy levels, which are particularly wide-spaced in H2 because of its low mass. These widely spaced levels inhibit equal partition of heat energy into rotational motion in hydrogen at low temperatures. Diatomic gases composed of heavier atoms do not have such widely spaced levels and do not exhibit the same effect.

That may be it. Maybe a detailed ir and microwave spectrum of rather cold H2 is somewhere to be found. With about 90% H2 and 10% helium it does appear to ‘report’ that no rotation modes are active at all if the 2/3 scalar stays put. This is getting really, really interesting now, wonder if I can even get to sleep.

Thank you tchannon:!: Those links sure made it much easier for a quick check.

44. tallbloke says:

Re-sult!

We need more information on degrees of freedom. Let’s not forget that this is what Graeff used in his theoretical explanation for his empirical findings concerning the larger than expected gradient in his equilibriated fluid columns.
https://tallbloke.files.wordpress.com/2012/01/graeff1.pdf pages 3 and 4
https://tallbloke.files.wordpress.com/2012/06/production-of-electricity-out-of-a-heat-bath.pdf pages 12-15

45. tallbloke says:

One question would be why is the profile of T vs P on Jupiter still linear above room temp? Could the increasing pressure be suppressing the expression of the rotational modes?

46. wayne says:

Agreed, and in some great detail on exactly when mode are frozen out or inactive and when and why they may be in-between.
Graeff, really? Guess I need to read on it later.

I’ll gather up some on the aspects of modes that I have read and that should partially answer a bit.

[Reply] Excellent. I’ve asked Hans to read Graeff too. I hope it will bring about a grand re-unification of talkshop contributors as well as physics theory. 🙂
Now get some sleep!

47. wayne says:

One more thing before I break for a while. I just have a very gut feeling that the 2/3 is actually of geometric in nature. I’ve presented this though a number of times before on wuwt but no one seems to give it much credence, but I have to disagree with them. Do think on this a bit.

The 2/3 is really 4/6th as I’ve already stated above. Any energy in this three dimensional world has a direction and this direction can be broken into components, xyz. Let the z be center to zenith on the sphere and for simplicity think in trillions on trillions of transfers, not just single ones, think more like a spherical energy transfer field equal in all directions.

You will find that that there are four times the transfers, think components, in the x-y plane horizontally than either up or down, and those horizontal transfer portions are always cancelled or nulled and that portion of energy stays resident in the atmosphere due to horizontal homogenous symmetry. For any component of a transfer one way horizontally, there is always an equal and opposite one transferred in exactly the opposite direction. In essence, horizontal macroscopically there is always zero net transfers, looking at one single transfer yes but not when you look at all possible directions and magnitudes in large numbers that constantly occur.

These four of the six possible directions seem to me to be very actual and real and ignored totally but really should not. The 4/6th, or 2/3, when combined with the heat transfer ratio define the amount of resident atmosphere vertically by compliment. If temperatures are static in all averaged horizontal layers then any energy flowing vertically can never, in bulk, stop within a layer, in bulk, for it must pass through or the temperature would rise and it never does in a long-term averaged atmosphere, each layer’s temperature is static.

How about the equation without the 2/3? That is just the normal potential temperature equation. But think of it this way, there is really a hidden 6/6th term in its exponent for it assumes zero energy transfer in any direction (isentropic), all energy must be static, in all six directions, component wise, and you get the adiabatic curve. (But the 6/6th is one you never see though it is really there, or let me say that I see it)

Let me know if I described that clearly enough. I think those concepts are critical in really understanding atmospheres about spheres and you never cross the concepts. Amazing to me.

48. Stephen Wilde says:

wayne,

Agreed that it has to be something to do with three dimensional geometry.

To apply on all planets that must be so.

In the past the implications of the Ideal Gas Laws and atmospheric pressure were taken as a given, based on observations and no one ever felt it necessary to prove it all from first principles.

Once the surface temperatures were claimed to be controlled by GHGs the whole subject went into the melting pot and then political activists took the new proposition over as an opportunity to reorder modern civilisation.

That leaves us to have to prove the old understandings from first principles.

I think I have a grip on the logic and basic concepts but you are doing a fine job in trying to tease out the maths in a way that helps to get it across to those so called scientists who seem to know little or nothing about non radiative processes.

49. tallbloke says:

This text looks useful:

Chemical Thermodynamics: A Specialist Periodical Report
By M. L Mac Glashan

50. tallbloke says:

Rog Tallbloke ‏@rogtallbloke

@richardabetts Please check new post by Wayne Jackson. Needs expert input, bring MET friends too please.

Richard Betts ‏@richardabetts

@rogtallbloke Thanks – I’ll encourage people to take a look.

Rog Tallbloke ‏@rogtallbloke

@richardabetts Thanks Richard – see latest comments, findings consistently extended to Jupiter! – a non-radiative solution is within sight.

51. Geoff Cruickshank says:

This seems very interesting.

52. wayne says:

Respectably tb, maybe we could take up any possible tie to Dr. Graeff’s work a little later on another thread. I mean, so much time was spent trying to explain his results but to no avail. Also, if you can grasp the point made by the ‘hidden’ 6/6th, that is one, that appears in the exponent of that equation, that just brings us back to the DALR. Just saying, that might get real messy again and the subjects are just marginally related.

I do see his equations, the Cgr=Cp/dof that simplifies to Cgr=nR(dof+2)/2 and that, in liquid water’s case, he basically using it to give his following equations an x fold boost but that for some reason doesn’t seem kosher by equipartiion on first viewing it. How about more on it later? Saturn still awaits. 🙂

[Reply] Sure, good idea. I just wanted to flag up the findings, because Graeff is the only person to have done practical experiments to my knowledge. Theory derived from consideration of ‘ideal gases’ misses part of the ‘degrees of freedom’ issue I think.

53. Stephen Wilde says:

Well guys, I’ve read a lot and thought a lot and applied a lifetime of observation in light of what I thought was settled science 50 years ago and it is really very simple.

Radiation to space is just what is left over after other non radiative processes have run their course within an atmosphere and it always equals the amount of solar energy coming in subject to short term changes caused by internal system variability.

If an atmosphere is retained by a planet for billions of years then there is a fundamental negative feedback in place. The early history of planets is replete with violent events that would have left them as barren lumps of rock if there were any question of positive feedbacks to anything.

The fact is that rising air cools adiabatically due to pressure effects and descending air warms adiabatically due to pressure effects.

It is also fact that what goes up must come down so the amount of rising equals the amount of falling.

Pressure remains constant if there is no change in atmospheric mass or the strength of the gravitational field so adiabatic warming and adiabatic cooling must always be a zero sum game unless one changes atmospheric mass, gravity or insolation.

So what we have here is a fixed amount of energy being constantly recycled within an atmosphere for any given level of solar input.

Atmospheric mass plus gravity determines the proportion of incoming solar energy that can be retained.

That applies equally to any medium that can be penetrated by solar energy which brings our oceans into play as part of our ‘atmosphere’.

That fixed amount of constantly recycled energy gets locked in early on in the history of the planet and stays there indefinitely as long as there is an atmosphere, gravity and insolation.

That fixed amount of energy being constantly recycled within an atmosphere determines the variation from the S-B calculation for any given atmosphere.

For the Earth the temperature value of the atmospheric effect is 33C.

Changes in composition cannot change that fixed amount of energy, merely the speed of throughput and it is the speed of throughput that determines the air circulation pattern and the sizes, intensities and positions of the permanent climate zones.

All else is chaff, serving to support false interpretations of reality.

I really don’t think that there is anything more that Ulric, Trick or anyone else can say to obfuscate those simple propositions.

All scientific principles can be reduced to their minimal essentials and then be expressed perfectly well in verbal terms.

I suggest that that has now been done as regards the so called greenhouse effect.

54. Stephen Wilde says:

To be more specific a change in composition that causes a change in the speed of energy throughput will always be countered by a circulation change that negates it.

55. Trick says:

Stephen 12:13 am: “I really don’t think that there is anything more that Ulric, Trick or anyone else can say to obfuscate those simple propositions.”

What a target, I can’t resist. Tie me down.

Stephen obfuscates: “…atmosphere is retained by a planet for billions of years then there is a fundamental negative feedback…”

Stephen obfuscates the surface, temperature and pressure and atm. composition has changed big time in those eons. The surface is where we live Stephen. It is important.

Stephen continues to obfuscate: “ The fact is that rising air cools adiabatically due to pressure effects and descending air warms adiabatically due to pressure effects.”

The fact is no natural process is adiabatic, they are all diabatic. A new term for Stephen?

Stephen obfuscates on a nearby star: “…fixed amount of energy being constantly recycled…”

The nearby star is variable Stephen.

Stephen gets close: “For the Earth the temperature value of the atmospheric effect is 33C.”

Well, close enough if surface emissivity assumed 1.0. Tallbloke points out the oceans mean it may not be 1.0, more on that later.

The best Stephen obfuscation is saved for last: “…merely the speed of throughput and it is the speed of throughput that determines the air circulation pattern…”

I’ve seen not one fundamental 1st principle reason presented by Stephen for this change response = 0 to happen even though changes are evident over the eons. The speed of throughput affects the surface Temperature and Stephen, yes, Tavg. of 288K changes due to “speed” of flux-in – flux-out.

Oh wait, there’s one more: “All scientific principles can be reduced to their minimal essentials and then be expressed perfectly well in verbal terms.”

Einstein was good at this, he verbalized relativity but had to learn, experiment with, execute final math to earn a general scientific principle. Stephen needs to learn some science & math to reduce target acquisition size, IMHO.

56. wayne says:

“Radiation to space is just what is left over after other non radiative processes have run their course within an atmosphere and it always equals the amount of solar energy coming in subject to short term changes caused by internal system variability.”

Kind of, that’s a very important thought and I have to comment on this. Try wording it this way Stephen — radiation while occurring in lines found in GHGs within the thick of the tropospheres is no different, in an important sense, than any other transfer of energy while there, low. Each has it’s strengths and weaknesses, conduction can’t transfer to space and is molecule to neighbor molecule of any species, radiation can transfer molecule-to-molecule (same frequencies) across long distances (like meters), convection can mass transfer vertically ignoring transverse transfer, but basically, they are all the same while there, they all just move energy upward where it is cooler.

I stopped viewing them as “different” when at low altitudes long ago. It really does not matter how they get from “here” to “there” while space is not even visible to each molecule and at each emission line. I think you are sub-dividing this aspect far too fine and getting sometimes trapped in the complexity that you created yourself. Don’t feel alone, the entire climatology community does that.

In one respect, this generalization is of key impotance to the potential temperatue relation, even with a two-thirs scalar.

57. tallbloke says:

Trick:
“Tallbloke points out the oceans mean it may not be 1.0, more on that later.”

The empirical measurements put it at 0.983 I believe. I don’t think emissivity affects the fundamentals Stephen is laying out however.

“The nearby star is variable Stephen.”

And this explains ‘global warming’ in the late C20th quite easily. Anyway Trick, you don’t need to be condescending to Stephen when he states quite clearly:
“So what we have here is a fixed amount of energy being constantly recycled within an atmosphere for any given level of solar input.

“Tavg. of 288K changes due to “speed” of flux-in – flux-out.”

I never could get my head around the warmist ‘trapping” meme. Maybe you could explain this obfuscation? 😉

Lets have that conversation on Joe’s thread or Tim F’s forthcoming thread though. This is Wayne’s thread, and he is expressing a desire for us to avoid dropping into the endless debate here.

58. tallbloke says:

Wayne: Putting off Graeff until we have Saturn data: seems like a bit of a wait then? 😉

“In one respect, this generalization is of key impotance to the potential temperatue relation, even with a two-thirs scalar.”

So back to the main question. Where is the 2/3 scalar coming from? Where do Miskolczi and Ramanathan get their similar number from? Maybe we could start there?

59. Stephen Wilde says:

Thanks wayne. I am always open to suggestions to refine wording.

Trick’s comments are each fatally flawed so I see no point in responding to them.

Let’s go on to consider the implications as regards clouds. The point will be equally applicable to any other aspect of atmospheric composition in so far as it affects the rate of conversion of kinetic energy to gravitational potential energy.

The atmosphere warms the Earth by 33C simply because a block of kinetic energy is constantly being recycled up and down within the atmosphere. The cycling process involves the conversion of that kinetic energy to gravitational potential energy and back again. During the cycling process it is not available to the radiative process but it does become available for radiating out to space when it is returned from gravitational potential energy to kinetic energy again at the surface.

The amount of that locked away kinetic energy is determined by mass and gravity. The length of time it spends within the loop is linked to the strength of insolation because that is what determines the height of the atmosphere and thus the maximum amount of rising and falling that can occur.

On average globally on Earth the amount of energy being returned to the surface at any given time is enough to raise the surface temperature by 33C.

The returning kinetic energy should appear in the global energy budget as returning kinetic energy and NOT DWIR.

A regards clouds we can ignore convective clouds because they represent acceleration of rising air and pull air in from all around.

The type of clouds trhat Ulric refers to are stratiform clouds.

However such clouds normally occur at a boundary between near surface air and warmer upper air. In other words they are a sign that a temperature inversion is present.

In order to form a cloud the cooler lower layer reduces the temperature of the air at the bottom of the warmer upper air to below its dew point.

Now, with or without clouds an inversion prevents further uplift for so long as it lasts.

Therefore with no uplift there is no conversion of kinetic energy to gravitational potential energy beneath the cloud or inversion.

That air is effectively removed from the loop temporarily.

Meanwhile all around that parcel of non ascending air (taking the globe as a whole) there is descending air which is still releasing kinetic energy whilst that parcel of air remains thermally static.

Thus does kinetic energy transfer into that parcel from all around it until it reaches the same temperature as the cloud or the base of any inversion. Since all is then at the same temperature, cloud, ground and the air in between, any net radiative transfer drops to zero.

The smaller the cloud the faster kinetic energy will transfer in from around about.

The parcel of air does not get warmer than the cloud or the layer above unless further heated by insolation or passing over a warm ocean surface and if that happens the stratiform cloud will dissipate and if enough energy is available the inversion will break down with convection beginning again whereupon the parcel of air will slowly rejoin the loop from which it had been excluded.

There is a special feature as regards a cloud over water.

The oceans lose energy to air at a variable rate depending on internal ocean movements. The ocean will do as it pleases regardless of any small cloud that might float above.

Thus when a cloud suppresses the conversion of kinetic energy to gravitational potential energy by reducing convection the ocean nonetheless keeps releasing energy into the air below the cloud.

Thus can the air under a cloud above the ocean become warmer when the cloud passes overhead.

That phenomenon has been puzzling a lot of people for a long time and hitherto it was thought to be a result of downward IR from the cloud.

There we have a plausible non radiative explanation for the observed effect of clouds.

60. Stephen Wilde says:

Here is a lightweight explanation:

http://www.ftexploring.com/energy/PE-to-KE.html

Just regard the falling ball as representing a single air molecule.

“Then finally, as is predicted by the 2nd Law of Energy, all of the gravitational potential energy ended up as low-grade thermal energy.”

That is how the surface is warmed by a descending atmosphere in the absence of insolation.

61. Wayne,

First of all, I agree completely that the lapse rate is a consequential variable not a fundamental one. People often make the erroneous assumption that it is some kind of physical property of the universe. But in fact it varies according to water vapour content, for example, so is anything but a constant even here on earth.

Therefore the real issue is how does temperature vary with pressure in any given atmosphere? Well, pressure depends on the weight of the atmosphere per unit area. So at ground level it depends on the whole weight bearing down on 1sq.m of surface and this is clearly (on average) a constant, dependent solely on the total mass of the atmosphere which is itself a constant.

As Stephen Wilde says, the temperature at ground level is thereby determined and the actual composition of the atmosphere (e.g. near-100% CO2 on Venus, near-0% CO2 on earth) simply alters the average lapse rate accordingly (if this at all of interest). This is essentially what Nikolov & Zeller said and explains exactly why doubling the quantity of CO2 in the earth’s atmosphere will (for the very small concentrations we have on earth) make not a blind bit of difference to earth’s mean surface temperature. So climate sensitivity to CO2 is zero, zilch.

One thing I am confused about though is that your formula does not seem to include a variable for the distance of the planet from the Sun. As Harry Huffman has shown, definitively and with brilliant clarity, this is an essential factor.

I agree with you on Graeff’s stuff. It would be a disappointing diversion at this stage.

62. clivebest says:

My take on all this is as follows:
For simplicity lets assume that the atmospheres on all planets are opaque to IR wavelengths. Essentially it is like a thick fog which slowly clears with height following barometric pressure. For each level in the atmosphere at height z, and temperature T (where T = Tsurf – lapse*z) local thermodynamic equilibrium is assumed . Therefore each level absorbs and emits equal amounts of IR in all directions. As we go up in height the fog will eventually clear at some height Zrad where the IR absorption length becomes greater than all the atmosphere above it. Net energy balance for the planet then ensures that the temperature of this height is Teff (255K on Earth, 232K for Venus, 210K for Mars).

If the lower atmosphere is 100% opaque as on Venus then it is convection that transports heat upwards to Zrad where it then radiates to space. If the atmosphere is partially opaque as on Earth then some of the heat also radiatively transfers upwards to Zrad (about 33% of total heat on Earth). The surface temperature for each planet will now simply depends on the surface Pressure and the Scale Height of each atmosphere .

```Planet    Scale Height    Lapse Rate    P0
Venus    15.9 km          10.5 K/km       92 bar
Earth      8.5 km           6.5  K/km          1  bar
Mars      11.1 km          10.5 K/km        0.006   bar
Jupiter    27km             2    K/km         >1000   bar
```

As a very rough figure Zrad occurs at pressures of around 0.3 – 0.4 bars. So on Earth Zrad ~ 5.1km. On Venus Zrad ~ 60km. Note that on Mars the pressure is too low for the atmosphere to be opaque even at the surface. This explains why the greenhouse temperature is so low for Mars ~3 deg.C

63. wayne says:

tb, I don’t mind anyone discussing anything here. It is just that topic has already filled, what, three very long threads and it deserves another long one specific to see if this clarifies what his experiments are showing. But his are in contained cylinders and not across any atmosphere. Just thought that might confuse the two.

More on Jupiter’s Galileo profile soon.

64. wayne says:

I’ve homed in on Jupiter’s Galileo probe data. It seems my test pick of the bottom ~2000 mb pressure differences was just a bit lucky to fall directly on three. So I derived the equation to back solve for the γ in the exponent from any two pressure differences and ran it the bottom readings from 10000 mb to 2250 when the probe failed. The average across all of these readings spanning 12 ½ earth atmospheres seems to be converging at just that, a degrees of freedom of 3 (γ=1.1667) or close. Hmm.

But here you see the bad data as the probe failed. Here’s an averaged view removing this bad portion (some individual computed entries were even negative, definitely bad) from the average and you get:

Now, is that converging on 1.667? Seems to be.

Higher up energy is beginning to leak more to space than when deep and you can see that.

This Galileo data file does not have an altitude column so comparative lapse rates cannot easily be compared but I’m working a bit on that too. Others have extended these files to a pressure-altitude relationship so it just might take some more work in all of those files.

So it bobbles a bit above and below three, but also this is one single spot on Jupiter and one probe and I haven’t even read where on Jupiter this probe was dropped, so there is expected some variances. All singles profiles like any one radiosonde is going to have warps here and there due to the weather, not long term averages that is climate. Right?

Still digging. In my first stab above, one of the pressures used is unadjusted. Oops. It’s a small error though. If anyone finds Cassini’s profile data on Saturn, if they exist, that link would be great.

Oh, the equations I am using to derive the DOF from two pressures and temperatures is:
solve(T=T0*(p/p0)^(2/3*((γ-1)/ γ)), { γ })

gives:
γ = log(p/p0)/(log(p/p0) – 3π{N1}i – 3*log(T/T0)/2)

drop the imaginary term:
γ = log(p/p0)/(log(p/p0) – 3*log(T/T0)/2)

from that:
DOF = 2/(γ-1) of course.

That might save someone a bit of time if you are actually checking this. ☺

65. wayne says:

As you can tell, I wasn’t quite ready for this idea to be scrutinized, don’t mind at all but now you get to see all of my wondering, speculating, creating, oh my, *errors*, backing up, so bear with me. Who knows, this just might be some real science that should have been purified and in a paper actually developed step-by-step on a blog thread. Don’t think I’ve seen that before on the ones I frequent.

Way to go tallbloke! It was you that pushed ‘Bilbo’ out of the door!

66. tchannon says:

“then a plunge into the Saturn atmosphere around the 2017 northern summer solstice, to destroy the spacecraft” — wikipedia

67. wayne says:

David Socrates, great points.

On Nikolov & Zeller, they are part of how I ended up following this trail of logic. As clivebest shows in his chart the lapse rates are all over the board compared across the planets, but that is distance, and I agree, it is a poor metric if your entire point is to, if possible, unify all atmospheres into a simpler relation.

I’ve described the path I took above but with Jupiter just falling in line, that’s exciting. I now probably need to send an email to N&K as a heads up, just might help them replace the four values with one simple relation with only the component gases involved and no unknown constants.

On you point of pressure, very true, mass and gravity, now pick a level, let’s say 500mb. That level will always be at some X altitude but that height depends on the total energy contained in the gases below that level, otherwise that level would fall or rise to some other equilibrium. That total energy is not going to equate by some relation to one single temperature for gravity guarantees each pressure level to be sorted, higher pressures lower. That is where this relation fits in. By lapse this is not a constant, by pressure it is without abnormal energy source or sinks in play within the gases below 500 mb. But weather, sadly, is always going to guarantees this abnormal state, so average over time and it should hold.

I just don’t see without changes in the solar input, albedo, the entire mass of the atmosphere or a sizable change in the gases compositions (and that ‘sizable’ is not a mere another .00039 fraction of CO2) how temperature over time will ever change. Could that mean the ice ages are from asteroids or comets skimming the atmosphere that removed some of the mass, that over time, is restored? Hmm.

Meteorologists are bound to have noticed this, they just never dissolved that equation down to its very first principles like the degrees of freedom of the gases themselves, or it seems that way, but meteorologists are not long term climatologists and daily weather really messes it up with all of the momentary energy fluxes. Or, maybe they never have noticed the scalar x (right at two-thirds). What I am saying is they have 500 mb height plots and this relation with the 2/3 scale applied, averaged over time, should hold for it also or this relation is wrong. That needs to be checked too.

I’m rambling too much.

68. tallbloke says:

Wayne: “Could that mean the ice ages are from asteroids or comets skimming the atmosphere that removed some of the mass, that over time, is restored? ”

Well if Henrik Svensmark is on the money, then it’s GCR’s making things cloudier, increasing albedo. Another external factor to consider.

69. wayne says:

clivebest, saved yours for last. Wow. Your thoughts are paralleling mine!

Last night I was trying to come up with a simple example to explain that very thought. One leaf lying on the floor of a very thick and tall forest, just follow its radiation, where its radiation goes and what it can absorb from the other leaves. Its radiation can never get ‘out’ for it cannot see the sky, other leaves will absorb it. Very high leaves can partially ‘see’ the sky and part from those leaves escapes lowering the temperature, but you said it better.

Of course in reality this is on a line-by-line basis whether it can ‘see’ its way out and to what proportion.

And on scale height, that needs some thought whether it has ties in the equations. Good point.

70. wayne says:

“Well if Henrik Svensmark is on the money, then it’s GCR’s making things cloudier, increasing albedo. Another external factor to consider.”

Very true. Forgot about Svensmark’s work and that’s probably the simpler of the two, albedo. I’m not sure if our atmosphere would ever be able to ‘restore’ itself if some of its mass was lost and that probably nulls that thought. ☺

71. Geoff Cruickshank says:

There are graphs of some pressure & temperature data on the Huygens probe landing on Titan here:

Click to access 20070010747_2007008554.pdf

72. Stephen Wilde says:

Ice ages are due to astronomical causes altering solar input for long periods of time.

If solar input is reduced then the atmospheric heights fall and the climate zones shift equatorward with an expansion of the polar air masses.

At the same time global cloudiness and albedo increase because the lines of air mass mixing become longer as the jet streams move equatorward and wave about more meridionally.

More cloud reduces solar input to the oceans but also slows down the water cycle which mitigates the cooling for a little while.

More cloud is a result of the shifting jets rather than the Svensmark hypothesis.

The changes in insolation from astronomic causes are separate from the shorter term changes that arise from shifts in the mix of wavelengths and particles from the sun. It is that latter process that has given us climate variations throughout the Holocene interglacial.

If atmospheric mass were to be lost then the system must cool because less energy could be retained in oceans and atmosphere under reduced surface pressure.

I like the comments of clivebest and wayne.

The propositions about degrees of freedom could well enable a mathematical proof of the general principles concerning the net thermal effect from GHGs or any other change in atmospheric composition.

That said the climate response is still going to be negative whatever the net sign of the change in composition and is still going to involve climate zone shifts, changes in cloudiness and albedo and changes in the amount of energy able to enter the oceans.

Even so, a change in the amount of energy entering the oceans still encounters a negative system response because the amount of energy that the oceans can hold is itself limited by pressure albeit there will be variability over time due to internal ocean movements.

wayne said:

“By lapse this is not a constant, by pressure it is without abnormal energy source or sinks in play within the gases below 500 mb. But weather, sadly, is always going to guarantees this abnormal state, so average over time and it should hold”

My thoughts exactly. To maintain system equilibrium the lapse rate set by mass and gravity must be met on average between surface and space but within any given atmosphere there can be any number of different lapse rates at different levels. Those differing lapse rates are caused by compositional differences at different heights.

Compositional changes will then reorder the actual lapse rates at different levels but the system will still settle down to the average lapse rate set by mass and pressure with no change in surface temperature provided insolation does not change.

In order to settle back to equilibrium there will be circulation changes which is where climate zone shifts come in.

73. Stephen Wilde says:

When molecules move up they gain gravitational potential energy but lose kinetic energy (cooling) and when moving down they lose gravitational potential energy and gain kinetic energy (warming).

But the thing is that within very small parameters the amount of rising is exactly the same as the amount of falling for the globe as a whole. What goes up must come down.

Rising molecules in low surface pressure regions and falling molecules in high surface pressure regions.

Here is that lightweight description again:

http://www.ftexploring.com/energy/PE-to-KE.html

Just regard the falling ball as representing a single air molecule.

“Then finally, as is predicted by the 2nd Law of Energy, all of the gravitational potential energy ended up as low-grade thermal energy.”

That is how the surface is warmed by a descending atmosphere in the absence of insolation.

Now put that pressure induced surface warming into the Earth’s energy budget in place of so called downwelling infra red radiation and all the numbers balance.

A pressure induced greenhouse effect that has nothing whatever to do with radiative physics except in so far as the balancing of the radiation budget is a consequence of all the non radiative processes within an atmosphere.

Radiation is just what is left over after all the non radiative processes have run their course.

The surface is 33C warmer than the S-B equation predicts because there is loop of energy in the atmosphere in the form of gravitational potential energy which is being constantly recycled back to the surface in addition to ongoing insolation.

The numbers all balance because at the same time exactly the same amount of incoming solar energy is constantly renewing the gravitational potential energy in the atmospheric loop due to insolation causing warm air to rise from the surface.

But that incoming solar energy has already been factored into the surface temprature BEFORE the air rises so when it comes back down again it has to be ADDED to the figure for insolation which gives the higher surface temperature.

The situation is then reversed at top of atmosphere.

At the top of atmosphere the energy taken out in the form of gravitational potential energy by the rising air has already been factored out by the time the air reaches the top of atmosphere temperature but since the surface is 33C warmer the surface radiates more and the missing portion is replaced to leave the top of atmosphere energy exchange in balance.

So there you have a fully sustainable system with a surface warmer than S-B thinks it should be but the global energy budget still balanced.

That happens without involving downward IR from the atmosphere so if downward IR has no place GHGs are no threat whatever in terms of a change in surface temperature.

They would have an effect on air circulation though but that is a separate issue

74. Stephen Wilde says:

The error in AGW theory then is this:

The surface temperature is currently taken BEFORE energy is removed into gravitational potential energy by rising air and BEFORE incoming insolation has been radiated to space.

That is a double positive since both are warming elements.

The top of atmosphere temperature is currently taken AFTER energy has been removed into gravitational potential energy by rising air and AFTER that missing energy has been replaced by radiation from the warmer surface.

That is positive plus a negative. One is a warming element and the other is a cooling element.

Instead one should isolate the gravitational potential energy exchange in the atmosphere from BOTH surface and top of atmosphere measurements at the same time.

As things stand there has been double counting at the surface but not at top of atmosphere.

Hence all the confusion.

75. BenAW says:

wayne says:

November 26, 2012 at 10:11 am

“@BenAW. Hi Ben, been a while.

Can you show me the one ideal gas equation from base parameters at one point that calculates the ADL (adiabatic lapse rate) value for a planet?”

Hi Wayne, been busy as well 😉

This is the high school derivation you began with. (See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lapse_rate)
But this ALR in ONLY valid for parcels of air moving up or down in an otherwise static atmosphere, when these parcels exchange kinetic energy for potential energy.

The ELR (Environmental Lapse Rate = temperature gradient) can not be derived directly from the Ideal Gas Law because the atmosphere is not a closed (adiabatic) system. Energy is flowing through it all the time. (see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Adiabatic_process)

When using altitude in a meterological sense it is assumed you mean pressure altitude, so the two are interchangeable. Just use the ISA tables.

76. Stephen Wilde says:

“the atmosphere is not a closed (adiabatic) system”

The kinetic energy to gravitational potential energy process and back again is a closed system within the atmosphere and remains intact despite solar energy flowing throuigh it.

77. Hello again, Wayne,

I am on holiday without laptop or research database so it’s difficult to respond in detail from a beach bar using my iPad connected to an indifferent wifi connection! However what you are investigating is hugely important so here goes with a dump of my similar investigations to date.

Some time ago I followed more-or-less exactly the path that you have followed, being more than a little skeptical of the usual half-informed guff around the concept of the adiabatic lapse rate. Once round that path, I was satisfied that the (dry) lapse rate was simply a (fixed) function of the (fixed) mix of atmospheric gases and nothing else. I think everyone needs to go round that educative path!

I will comment only on your objective (as I understand it – do correct me if I am wrong) to find an equation that defines atmospheric temperature Tz at any given height z above ground level for any planet with an atmosphere, given only the atmospheric gas composition and without having to assume any dependence whatsoever on the radiative properties of the constituent gases. If this can be achieved, in the sense that the equation is validated against reliable empirical planetary data (earth and Venus will do fine for a start) it will be “game set and match”
against the warmistas and luke warmistas alike.

The equation you gave can (I think) be represented as follows:

Tz /T0= (P0 / Pz)^k where…

Tz is the atmospheric temperature at height z above ground level
T0 is the atmospheric temperature at ground level
Pz is the atmospheric pressure at height z above ground level
P0 is the atmospheric pressure at ground level
k is a constant for a specific planet that is dependant ONLY on the specific heats of the constituent gases in its atmosphere and NOT on their radiative properties

[Detail: k = 4 + 3*(DOF+2) where DOF = 2 / ((Cp/Cv)-1) where Cp is the specific heat of the atmospheric gas mix at constant pressure, and Cv is  the specific heat of the atmospheric gas mix at constant volume]

So boiling this down, you are saying (I think) that Tz / T0, the ratio of atmospheric temperature at height z to atmospheric temperature at ground level, is a function of two independent factors: (1) the ratio of the pressure at ground level to the pressure at height z; and (2) the ratio of the effective specific heats at constant pressure and constant volume of the atmospheric gases (Cp / Cv).

Now I am sure you agree that determining theratio of two quantities in terms of the ratios of two other quantities is not at all the same as determining an absolute value for any one of those quantities. Specifically, assuming your equation is correct (and I haven’t had the time or resources to check it through yet), to determine Tz you need to know values for T0, Pz and P0 (and, of course, for the atmosphere’s Cp and Cv).

So let’s do just that.

FIXING P0
As I said in my previous comment, P0 on any rocky planet that has an atmosphere is entirely determined by the total mass of its atmosphere, its surface area, and its g value (acceleration due to gravity). This fixes the weight bearing down on each square metre of the surface and therefore fixes P0, the pressure at ground level. You would think that there really cannot be any controversy over that.

FIXING Pz
Having fixed P0 in terms of basic planetary constants, we can now proceed to fix Pz. As we ascend the atmospheric column (assuming well- mixed constituent gases) the weight bearing down on each square metre reduces. This is because there is a reduction in pressure dP between the bottom and top surfaces of each 1 sq m ‘slice’ of atmosphere (for very small slices of thickness dz at height z) as determined by the hydrostatic equation:

-dP = Dz x g x dz where…

Dz [kg/m3] is the planet’s gas density at height z
g [m/s2] is the planet’s acceleration due to gravity.

So, starting at ground level, the pressure in the ‘ground’ slice of thickness dZ is P0 which we have already determined by the method described in “FIXING P0” above. For a slice of 1 sq m, the density is numerically equal to the pressure. So the ground slice has a density, D0 [kg/m3], equal to the numerical value of P0 .

Using the hydrostatic equation, we find that dP0, the pressure difference between the upper and lower surfaces of that ground slice, is equal to P0 x g x dz. Once you have this value, you can calculate P1, the pressure of the next slice up, as being P0 – dP0. Now you can repeat the operation to calculate the pressure difference between the lower and upper surfaces of slice 1…. and so on up the atmospheric column until you reach height z where you obtain Pz.

The process described can be achieved either by calculation or by developing a very simple iterative program. I wrote mine in VBA within Excel. It worked fine. I checked it against the US Standard Atmosphere.

FIXING T0
The surface temperature T0 is easy to determine from P0, the surface pressure, using the Ideal Gas Law:

P V = n R T

or, in the form I prefer:

P V = M Rs T where…

P is the gas pressure [Pa]
V is the gas volume [m3]
M is the gas mass [kg]
Rs is the specific gas constant for the gas (or mixture of gases) [J/kg/K]
T is the gas temperature [K]

Substituting density D [kg/m3] for M / V, the equation becomes:

P = D Rs T which, by re-arrangement, gives…

T = P / (D Rs)

For the particular case of T0 we have:

T0 = P0 / (D0 Rs)

We already have P0 from “FIXING P0” above and D0 from “FIXING Pz” above. Rs is a known constant for all gases (and mixtures of gases such as air). Therefore we can calculate T0.

HOME AND DRY
So there it is. We have fixed P0, Pz and T0. Therefore we have determined Tz, the temperature at a height z in the atmosphere of any planet, without invoking radiative transfer theory, providing we know just the following basic facts about the planet:

1. Cp, the specific heat of the atmospheric gas mix at constant pressure.
2. Cv, the specific heat of the atmospheric gas mix at constant volume.
3. Rs, the specific gas constant for the atmospheric gas mix.

Since all these values are independent of the radiative properties of the individual atmospheric gases, it follows from the empirical data for earth (which has near 0% CO2) and Venus (which has near 100% CO2) that the radiative properties of CO2 and other atmospheric gases do not have any influence whatsoever on their respective temperature profiles.

78. Trick says:

David Socrates 7:49 pm: “…the radiative properties of CO2 and other atmospheric gases do not have any influence whatsoever on their respective temperature profiles.”

Whenever I see this I know there’s a problem. If not a problem, show us from this work how you can get earth To or the density for atm. of Earth, then draw the right environmental profile intersecting surface with real numbers for P&T.

Hint1: David will need to measure & use Earth radiative emission and absorptive properties.

Hint2: What David shows is pretty much actually how they got Venus T profile, from measuring atm. refraction to get the atm. density(z) thru radio occultation techniques. But to draw the T profile with real numbers at surface, they needed Venus radiative properties measured from probes. The probes measuring Venus density & radiation info. thus already had the effects of net insolation, DWIR, UWIR baked into the density (so to speak).

79. Trick says:

BTW, the original Venera probe had the thermometer scaled in a range set up to 730K think it was. The thumb rule wayne writes about & ideal gas law David discusses, with radiation balance in some rough form must have been evident to the scientists back then as to what T range to look for. A TIA for someone finding a ref. as to how they set the upper range.

80. wayne says:

BenAW says:
November 29, 2012 at 4:20 pm

Hi Ben,

When you said: “The ELR (Environmental Lapse Rate = temperature gradient) can not be derived directly from the Ideal Gas Law because the atmosphere is not a closed (adiabatic) system. Energy is flowing through it all the time. (see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Adiabatic_process)” you are stating exactly what started me down this path – to find if there is some yet unknown relation equation or equations that does derive only from the ideal gas laws and can apply to all atmospheres.

That is, are all atmospheres basically identical when considering the correct parameters? For the first month or so I couldn’t seem to find any tie, but later everything started to fall in line through the potential temperature relation and pointed directly to each gases heat properties and at each gases concentration.

This seems, so far, to imply that the energy flows upward through an averaged atmosphere are specific atmosphere independent in a way. My first suspicion just why this is so is in simple spherical geometry. About a sphere all lateral flows of energies of any type cancel due to homogenous symmetry. The thought is not mine but Miskolczi mentioned this in one of his last papers or both, it makes such simple sense, the vertical 1/3 is all that really matters. With that simple thought you naturally get 4/6th (2/3) of any isotropic flows (vectors in all 3d directions) being irrelevant.

It all has narrowed down (in very thick tropospheres) to something so very simple I’m not sure if you could call this groundbreaking but there it is. 😉

81. wayne says:

@Stephen Wilde:
Stephen, your comments deserve some scratching, not trying to just jump over you. ☺

82. Stephen Wilde says:

wayne.

The closed system issue seems to be throwing some people.

The process of air rising or falling is only diabatic whilst the moving air retains some contact with the ground.

The process of conduction from ground to air before the air starts to rise is clearly diabatic because heat is being added.

The process of conduction from air to ground after the air descends back to the surface is clearly diabatic because heat is being removed.

However the vast bulk of the cycle or ‘loop’ is during a period when the air is rising or falling out of contact with the surface and that is when most of the energy transition from kinetic to potential and back occurs so that process of transition is adiabatic pretty much throughout.

So we do have a chunk of energy in potential form locked away in that adiabatic process and constantly circulating between surface and space.

So the point I made about the accounting being wrong is perfectly correct.

AGW theory takes the surface temperature BEFORE the transition to potential energy within rising air has taken place and the top of atmosphere temperature AFTER the transition to potential energy within rising air has taken place.

That is only half the cycle so it throws out the accounting.

They are comparing apples to pears and wondering why the numbers do not balance.

83. wayne says:

David Socrates says:
November 29, 2012 at 7:49 pm

Thank you very much David for digging into this and following the derivation.

I think I follow you right up to when you said “Since all these values are independent of the radiative properties of the individual atmospheric gases, it follows from the empirical data for earth (which has near 0% CO2) and Venus (which has near 100% CO2) that the radiative properties of CO2 and other atmospheric gases do not have any influence whatsoever on their respective temperature profiles.”

I must disagree. All these values are not independent of the radiative properties and it shows in what this implies so far. If you increase the concentration of one gas of the mixture that has more degrees of freedom the Cp/Cv ratio (γ) then changes and it does affect how much the temperature changes across a given range of pressures. I noticed Trick picked up on this.

However, to change any given atmosphere overall, if the change in a gas that is at a very tiny concentration, that changes influence would likewise be very small. It is concentration dependent. Try thinking this way, all linear molecules (N2,O2,CO2) will have a base of five d.o.f.s. If they also have vibrational lines active (not an ideal either/or but by actual measurement) then that gas’s influence will rise above five. Earth’s troposphere seems to say 5 + (0.008 or 0.009) by the US76 Standard Atmosphere. Venus points at 5 + (~0.77) per the VIRA profile. Jupiter’s bulk of molecules seem to point at just the translational degrees of freedom being active, three. These are all by actual measurements. Are they all perfectly accurate? Don’t know but must rely that the scientists that performed the averaging knew what they were doing.

Maybe you meant it would be incredibly hard to change an atmosphere’s molecular composition so much that the surface mean temperature would be sizably and permanently altered. There I agree.

84. clivebest says:

There can be no greenhouse effect without a lapse rate, and there can be no lapse rate without a greenhouse effect.

The heat energy from the surface needs somehow to get out to space in order to cool the planet. On the moon without any atmosphere it is simple – it cools by direct radiation to space. For all other planets there is a thermal barrier consisting of varying densities of (approximately) opaque atmospheres which to first order absorb all up going radiation. Convection then kicks in to short circuits the radiation barrier and set up a lapse rate. Fundamentally though it is still the case that at every level in the atmosphere only half of the radiation transports up and the other half goes down. This forces the surface to warm further until it can add the extra 1/3 of radiation needed to drive the heat up high enough to reach the clear transparent level to radiate heat out to space.

P.S. this is a late night thought !

85. suricat says:

clivebest says: November 29, 2012 at 11:14 pm

“P.S. this is a late night thought !”

This is my problem as well! 🙂

Where a planet possesses an atmosphere, there is always a lapse rate because ‘gravity’ also presents. Our problem is in, accurately, explaining the deviation from the adiabatic lapse rate that takes into account the environmental forces that cause it to (for the want of a better word) ‘deform’. 🙂

However, if (as you attest) the presence of a ‘lapse rate, per se’ indicates the presence of a ‘GHE’, I concur. Though, this excludes ‘radiative gasses’ and exists by virtue of ‘thermal inertia/capacity alone’ where an atmosphere is in evidence. An ‘enhancement’ to this property ‘does’ exist, but is ‘rare’.

BTW guys. I’ve re-read Miskolczi 2007 and can’t find a reference to 2/3! Only the ‘inverse’, 3/2! Perhaps there’s a good reason for this ‘inversion’? You can read it here:

Click to access IDOJARAS_vol111_No1_01.pdf

I don’t have a link to the other papers mentioned in this thread though. 😦

Best regards, Ray.

86. wayne says:

David, just read your comment again, twice, and all of the way down I’m going, yes, yes, yes, you get it, but let me rephrase my comment back to you. I think I jumped over your point.

“all these values are independent of the radiative properties of the individual atmospheric gases”

If a troposphere is so thick that all radiation from each emission line, rotational or vibrational, sees its local environment as perfectly opaque at those frequencies then radiation is no different at that locale than simple conduction, just faster and further reaching, though equalization occurs faster if temperatures differ. Then yes, “all these values are independent of the radiative properties” for you no longer have to isolate “radiation” as some energy transfer labeled as being “special”. Then it is just heat capacity dependent as you stated. Now I see your point and that is exactly what I see in this relation. It’s why once space can be “seen” by radiation lines from molecules this relation starts to no longer hold true.

With that I totally agree with your entire comment above. Super insight there David. Sorry to not read that deep enough the first time through.

If I don’t break here I will, once again, be out of sync with most of you over the big pond. ☺

87. wayne says:

David, carry that thought one more step. What now of “back radiation” (downward normal radation), it no longer in essence exists as some special entity either while speaking of radiation from the gases within the troposphere.

What of the mythical effective radation level at about 5.5 km altiture? It becomes but a mathemeatical construct and has no existance in realty.

In all essence the GHE is that 2/3rd in that equation.

See, now with this new viewpoint you begin to see many implications and each needs to be explored. Just may explain many things that used to seem so incredibly complex that they could never be really solved.

88. wayne says:

Stephen Wilde says: “The surface is 33C warmer than the S-B equation predicts because there is loop of energy in the atmosphere in the form of gravitational potential energy which is being constantly recycled back to the surface in addition to ongoing insolation.”

Hi again Stephen, that 33C is from invalid averages. I agree with much you spoke above, on the big ice ages and TSI, but I must respectably disagree on that statement. Nikolov and Zeller straightened everyone out who was listening on the actual GHE value. The mean surface is more like 154K and the GHE is more like 134C. Now, just how can that large amount of boost in temperature be explained? That’s a very, very good question and could be right in the realm of this particular equation and the topic of the atmospheres heat capacities.

That also needs to be looked into; I have no insight there right now, just a suspicion. I’ll get back.

89. Wayne,

You say: With that I totally agree with your entire comment above. Super insight there David. Sorry to not read that deep enough the first time through.

Thanks. All I have done is to avoid look at the HOW and concentrating on the WHAT. People (like Trick, for example) use radiative transfer theory as their starting point because they are ‘religiously’ wedded to it. Their theory is right so the empirical data must be wrong! Yet my analysis, which simply uses the gas law and the hydrostatic equation concurs with the actual empirical data from earth and Venus. For me this shows that radiative transfer theory MUST BE WRONG. For the warmistas, it shows that the empirical data must be wrong.

Yes it might be interesting for some people to speculate why it is wrong but I personally think it is up to the warmistas to decide where they have erred all these years. And then to apologise for all the trouble they have caused. Do you notice how, when challenged by a watertight explanation, such as the one I presented, of why GHGs CANNOT be the cause of atmospheric warming, warmistas never respond by showing where the reasoning is wrong? Instead they just repeat the GHG warming mantra.

90. Clivebest,

You say: There can be no greenhouse effect without a lapse rate

There is no greenhouse effect, with or without a lapse rate, if by that term you mean that so-called GHGs make the atmosphere warmer than it would be without them. I have shown why definitively in my previous posts to Wayne – unless perhaps you can see a flaw in my reasoning? Venus is nearly 100% CO2 yet it’s temperature profile is wholly explained by the gas law and the hydrostatic law and so needs no GHG warming theory. Are you denying my analysis and the empirical evidence? If so in what respect?

You say: There can be no lapse rate without a greenhouse effect.

I agree that there cannot be a negative lapse rate without the presence in the upper troposphere of radiative gases such as water vapour and CO2. They COOL the atmosphere by radiating energy to space. But that can hardly be called a ‘greenhouse’ effect, can it?

91. Wayne,

You say: Hi again Stephen, that 33C is from invalid averages. I agree with much you spoke above, on the big ice ages and TSI, but I must respectably disagree on that statement. Nikolov and Zeller straightened everyone out who was listening on the actual GHE value. The mean surface is more like 154K and the GHE is more like 134C.

I agree with you that 33degC is wrong. It is clearly one of the biggest blunders in the chequered history of so-called ‘climate science’. It is based on first integrating the energy received from the Sun at every point on the Earth’s surface and then using S-B once to calculate the earth’s mean temperature. Whereas SB should first be applied individually to the energy received at each point on the earth’s surface and then the resulting temperature values should be averaged to calculate the earth’s mean temperature.

The N&Z rationale is definitive. However you should note that they have since revised their figures for an atmosphere-less earth from 154K to 194K to take account of the heat retention effects of the surface. But even with this adjustment (empirically confirmed by recent Diviner data from the Moon) there is still an enormous difference of just under 100K due to the ‘atmosphere effect’ (I suggest using this term rather than ‘GHG effect’) compared with the erroneous 33K figure which is just a piece of mathematical fiction.

92. tallbloke says:

“… there is still an enormous difference of just under 100K due to the ‘atmosphere effect’ (I suggest using this term rather than ‘GHG effect’) ”

Hi David. If everyone understood that the ocean is actually part of the ‘atmosphere’ I’d go along with this. However, they don’t, so I think we need to use the more long winded ‘atmosphere-ocean effect’ in order to avoid misleading patterns of thought masking the actualite.

93. Stephen Wilde says:

wayne.

I only referred to 33C because it seemed to be generally accepted by the establishment. It matters not to me what the actual value is. The principle remains the same.

The greenhouse effect (pressure based rather than radiative) must be accounted for by the ongoing conversion of kinetic energy to gravitational potential energy and back again plus the time it takes for a complete circuit.

The surface only appears to be warmer than it ‘should’ be because of the accounting error that I highlighted.

The exchange of energy going on in the atmosphere between surface and space must be isolated from the background throughput of solar energy.

I also prefer a new term for the effect since the old term of ‘greenhouse effect’ originally applied to the effect of pressure has been irretrievably hijacked by radiative proponents.

The N & K term is fine by me. Was it Atmospheric Thermal Enhancement (ATE) ?

94. Stephen Wilde says:

I also agree with tallbloke concerning the role of the oceans.

I intuitively include the oceans as part of the ‘atmosphere’ for this purpose because the behaviour of the oceans greatly affects the timing and location of the uplift that begins the process of conversion of kinetic energy to gravitational potential energy.

In effect the oceans ‘ration’ the return of solar energy to the air as a result of internal ocean movement but in the end it is all down to surface pressure and thus atmospheric mass rather than composition.

95. Trick says:

David 12:08 pm: “…unless perhaps you can see a flaw in my reasoning?” 12:52 pm “ …33degC is wrong.”

The flaw in David’s reasoning is that it predicts Earth To = Tavg. = 302K when Earth Tavg. is measured at 288K. And conflicts with satellites measuring Earth Tavg=255K meaning the effective emitting level is higher altitude than surface Tavg. = 288K. Here’s why:

David 11/29 7:49 pm – “The surface temperature T0 is easy to determine from P0, the surface pressure, using the Ideal Gas Law.”

Yes! There is nothing wrong with David’s 7:49 pm ideal gas law math or wayne’s thumb rule. This just means P=density*R*T works on Earth and everywhere else and was executed with no typo.s. Well, everywhere except maybe as we know under more extreme conditions empirical correction is needed (PV=znRT).

clivebest 11/29 2:56 pm: “…planets are opaque to IR wavelengths….Net energy balance for the planet then ensures that the temperature of this height is Teff (255K on Earth)… “

The interesting thing is that clivebest gets the measured Earth answers too at 2:56 pm.

How can this be?

The Verkley paper posted above does not use any radiative physics either. (So I guess they are not warmista in David’s view). Yet the paper does develop Earth’s ideal lapse rate from a key assumption: “… we will assume that the net exchange of heat with the column’s surroundings is zero.” Note the resulting surface temperature (302K) is about 14K high over reality Tavg.=288K.

That’s a clue there is more than just David’s physics going on for planets. Another “radiation is important” clue is David’s work does not predict the tropopause: P,T go to zero on the same ideal curve yet they do not on a real planet. Radiation & energy balance is important part of puzzle.

Also David’s work gives no clue whether it is day or night on the planet. Or even the sun strength,albedo or whether sun is shining or a cloudy day. Atmospheric radiation is important for those clues, authors of those texts can rest easy.

My assessment is David’s work is accurate but incomplete – has to be added to clivebest’s radiation work to get the real planetary physics. The radiative clues from 1st and 2nd law added to the ideal gas law are important parts of the real world.

Again, as I wrote 11/29 8:59 pm: Without using radiative physics, David cannot do as he says in the starting 7:49pm clip above. He will need a measured value of say atm. density with the DWIR,UWIR, Solar vs. deep space balanced & baked in reality to get a real answer for To=Tavg. =288K.

Venera, Mariner & Magellan probes were useless if David can “easily” get To=Tavg. =288K w/o radiative physics involved. Do so David, if you can I’d be interested.

96. BenAW says:

Hi Wayne
I’ve been trained in meteorology before radiation madness struck, and the explanation for the ELR in those days was pretty simple.
Assume an earth like planet, no radiation from space coming in (no sun, no backgroundradiation) and we can control the surface temperature.
Heating off, the atmosphere lays on the surface at 0K, all molecules motionless and the ELR = 0K/km.
Turn on the heat (slowly to prevent convection) and by conduction/radiation the molecules heat up (start vibrating), and push each other up, against gravity. Once the H2O and CO2 is also “in the air” and the surface temp is worldwide eg 290K, we have an atmospher were at every (pressure) level the total of kinetic and potential energy is the same and we have maximum entropy.
The lapse rate depends on the surface temperature and how efficient the atmosphere transports the energy upwards to in the end radiate away to space.
This works pretty wel for the dense part of the atmosphere. Higher up when the air gets thinner I think all bets are off.
eg the heating of a few lonely molecules by radiation creates enormous temperatures.

97. Clivebest says:

For a planet like Venus with an optically thick atmosphere there is no “greenhouse effect” as such. There is zero “back radiation” and no “radiative transfer”. All IR photons are absorbed within 5 cms of being emitted by other CO2 molecules. Beer-Lambart’s law sees to that :

Trans(z) = exp(-kPz) where Trans is transmitted flux after distance z with k=656,139.4,18.37,1.48 for the CO2 absorption bands, P=92 Atmospheres and CO2 =0.95, even for the main CO2 band 13-17 microns the transmitted flux is negligible after 1m.

So there is no radiative transfer (it is all absorbed within 3cm at the surface) and there is no back radiation either. Instead the planet must loose heat through convection – the lapse rate . That is why the formulas using thermodynamics Cp/Cv and the surface pressure work so well.

Earth is more complex as it is semi-opaque. Mars is optically thin. I am developing a simple model for radiative transfer see: http://clivebest.com/blog/?p=4265. It is written in PERL. Ken Gregory has adapted it to Excel which is easier to understand see: http://members.shaw.ca/sch25/Ken/Clive_Radiation.xlsx

Now for the mystery of the lapse rate: Supposing the atmosphere was pure Argon – in other words have no greenhouse gases – zero emissivity. Would there be a lapse rate ? The planet surface would radiate directly to space and be at Teff (255K for Earth). Would there be any convection to drive a lapse rate ? There is no real consensus about this. Some Day/Night and Equatorial/Polar temperature differences would seemingly setup convection cells. How high up would this go and what height would be the tropopause ? Would the atmosphere instead be isothermal with ? If there were a lapse rate it would go down from Teff at the surface.

98. Trick says:

Clivebest 2:14 pm: “…zero emissivity”.

Only in theory, Clive . Argon is matter so in reality when T>0 Argon has IR emissivity.

99. Stephen Wilde says:

The description from BenAW is pretty much how I understood the basics some 50 years ago.

However, the lapse rate which depends on surface temperature and the efficiency of upward transport is the actual observed lapse rate and is affected by composition hence the differing actual lapse rates at different levels. Even a reversed lapse rate in the stratosphere due to the composition change related to ozone amounts.

In the background is the ideal lapse rate set by mass and gravity with the height of the atmosphere and the distance through which the ideal lapse rate runs from surface to space being set by the power of the solar input.

Now the thing is that if the ideal lapse rate is not maintained over time the atmosphere will be lost. Either it will be boiled off to space or it will fall back to congeal on the surface.

Since the atmosphere has not been lost it must follow that if a composition change in one layer causes the actual lapse rate to diverge from the ideal lapse rate there must be a negative adjustment elsewhere in the vertical temperature profile.

In the end the netted out sum of all the different actual lapse rates must equal or get very close to the ideal lapse rate.

In reality it seems that some atmosphere is being lost to space all the time so it is likely that the sum of the actual lapse rates does fail to match the ideal lapse rate to a tiny degree.

The very existence of an atmosphere is empirical proof that it must be so.

The variables that will respond to imbalances will be the atmospheric heights between equator and pole and the gradients of those heights between equator and pole. There can be variable sizes of adjustments differentially at multiple levels to provide fine tuning.

Altering the gradients between equator and pole will involve latitudinal shifting of climate zones and changes in jet stream tracks.

Thus climate change is a negative system response to any forcing effect that seeks to increase the divergence between the ideal lapse rate and the net sum of all the actual lapse rates at different levels.

Note that when those heights and gradients change they are forced to do so by differential changes in the balance of kinetic energy and gravitational potential energy at each height.

The failure to consider and properly account for the transitions to and fro between kinetic energy and gravitational potential energy is the elephant in the room of the climate establishment.

100. Stephen Wilde says:

clivebest.

A pure Argon atmosphere with no GHGs and thus having to radiate only from the surface must still have a lapse rate.

Surface heating would cause convection via conduction on the day side and during the rising process kinetic energy gets converted to gravitational potential energy and ceases to participate in the radiative process.

Having risen any air parcel is then replaced at the surface by air flowing in from the night side which sets up a circulation.

When air descends on the night side the gravitational potential energy is converted back to kinetic energy which warms the surface by conduction re entering the radiative process so that radiation can then exit to space.

That would all require a very vigorous circulation.

If one then adds GHGs an extra outlet is provided whereby radiation can escape from the atmosphere directly to space.

The consequence will be that the global circulation will become less vigorous because less energy remains in the air to fuel the circulation.

It is a self adjusting process whereby the ideal lapse rate is complied with despite divergences from it within the atmosphere.

The GHGs cause the actual lapse rate to diverge from the ideal lapse rate in one direction and the circulation changes cause the actual lapse rate to diverge from the ideal lapse rate in the other direction for a zero effect on surface temperature.

What changes in the process is the amount of kinetic energy locked into the atmosphere in the form of gravitational potential energy. The energy distribution across the surface also changes as the climate zones shift.

Note that when climate zones shift poleward the winds become more zonal and the air at the poles becomes isolated from the main circulation with the poles then cooling.

Thus any warming of middle latitudes from more warm winds flowing across is offset by cooling at the poles.

That keeps global average surface temperatures pretty much the same but of course most of our surface sensors are situated in the middle latitudes which skews the results even without the urban heat island effect and the apparent abandonment of proper site maintenance.

The satellite record is better and indeed is showing much reduced variability so I suspect that such variability as the satellites are showing is just variations about the mean as the system shows a lagging effect in its response to solar and oceanic forcings which combine or offset one another over time to push the system one way and then another.

Any effect on climate zone positions from human sources would be imperceptible in comparison to the natural variations.

101. Clivebest says:

@ Steven

I agree that for any real atmosphere on a real planet there will always be circulation in the atmosphere, even if there is very little greenhouse gases. I got involved in a very long discussion about all this on Science of Doom , which is still continuing – see http://scienceofdoom.com/2012/08/12/temperature-profile-in-the-atmosphere-the-lapse-rate/. There is no agreement about the hypothetical case of an atmosphere with zero emissivity. Yes even Argon or N2 will emit some small amount of IR at temperature T as the molecules colide together. However it is just a thought experiment

This really goes back to Lochsmidt’s dispute with Maxwell about a column of gas in a gravitational field.In the absence of convection, conduction of heat would eventually lead to an isothermal atmosphere – or would it ? One way to test it is to use centrifuge. I read that Dyson digital motors can reach 100,000 rpm. This is easily enough to do an experiment as to whether the outside is warmer than the inside. Even 100 rev/sec reaches 4000g.

102. Stephen Wilde says:

“This really goes back to Lochsmidt’s dispute with Maxwell about a column of gas in a gravitational field.In the absence of convection, conduction of heat would eventually lead to an isothermal atmosphere – or would it ?”

i) An atmosphere open to the sky does have convection up and then down which is what one needs to convert kinetic energy to gravitational potential energy and back again. It is that cycling conversion process that removes energy temporarily from the radiation budget and thereby causes the surface to be warmer than it otherwise would be when it is later returned back to the surface. Thus the debate about an isolated container is irrelevant. There would be no such circulation without convection.

ii) With regard to a sealed container imagine that energy from an external source is constantly being added. That is akin to solar input to our real world.

In that situation there may be no convection but more of the incoming insolation would be converted to heat where the molecules are densest namely at the bottom of the column so as long as insolation continues the temperature gradient would remain.

Whilst insolation continues the process of conduction would be unable to create an isothermal outcome. Only when the insolation stops could an isothermal outcome then develop and indeed I think that it would do so despite the continuing presence of gravity.

One needs continuing insolation AND convection to produce the real world outcome. Removing those two components renders the Loschmidt / Maxwell dispute irrelevant.

103. Stephen,

Yes, I agree that 33degC or 100degC makes no difference to your argument. But I do think N&Z were fundamentally right and so it is good to use the best current estimate. If the warmistas believe that all the warming is due to the supposed GHG effect, they will have a much tougher time justifying 100degC since their whole theory has hitherto been centred around 33degC!

I also absolutely agree that we should use the N&Z terminology, Atmospheric Thermal Enhancement (ATE).

On your points about the transfer of energy between kinetic and potential form, I am not so sure what you are getting at (although willing to be persuaded).  My model of the ATE effect is that it is due (mainly) to the normal physics of kinetic energy flow through a non-vacuum medium. Suppose we were talking about an iron bar, heated at one end and cooled at the other. We would expect a temperature profile to develop, the temperature difference between one end and the other to be related to the achieved rate of energy flow. This could certainly be set by the energy source but also by the physical conductivity of the metal. Yes, of course in the atmosphere there are extra things going on: circulations due to convection and the the conversion of kinetic to potential energy in rising air (thus losing heat but conserving energy). But the overall externally observable effect is surely still the steady net flow of energy from surface to space, aided by the radiative gases, ‘impeded’ by the thermal characteristics of the air (not a good conductor), and enhanced by the convection effect.

104. Stephen Wilde says:

” But the overall externally observable effect is surely still the steady net flow of energy from surface to space, aided by the radiative gases, ‘impeded’ by the thermal characteristics of the air (not a good conductor), and enhanced by the convection effect.”

But consider that when kinetic energy is converted to potential energy by the interaction with gravity it disappears from the process until it is returned to the surface again by descending air.

So potential energy should be deducted from the surface energy budget when air rises, and because it has disappeared from view it must be deducted from the top of atmosphere energy budget too.

Then when it descends it has to be added back to the surface energy budget when it returns as kinetic energy then added back to the top of atmosphere energy budget because it radiates straight out from the ground.

Now if all that were instant there would be no problem but it all takes time so the process is out of sync with the normal radiative flow of solar shortwave in and longwave out.

Because it is out of sync it must be regarded as a separate energy loop quite independent of the pass through of solar energy.

What AGW proponents have done is to just take half the loop by taking the surface temperature BEFORE the conversion to potential energy and the top of atmosphere temperature AFTER the conversion to potential energy.

That leads to double counting at the surface because the surface temperature then represents both insolation AND returning kinetic energy from the separate loop.

The proper scenario is this:

i) Solar shortwave in 255

Longwave out 255

and in a separate loop:

ii) Kinetic energy removed from surface 33 (or whatever)

Kinetic energy returned to surface 33.

What they have done instead is this:

i) At surface:

Solar shortwave in 255 plus kinetic energy returning 33 = 288

Longwave out 255 plus kinetic energy out 33 = 288.

ii) At top of atmosphere:

Solar shortwave in 255

Longwave out 255.

So obviously there is a discrepancy which they cover by postulating downward DWIR of 33

But

There is also a kinetic/potential energy impact at top of atmosphere which they have ignored.

Thus:

solar shortwave in 255 plus 33 from warmer surface due to returning kinetic energy = 288

longwave out 255 less 33 retained by atmosphere as potential energy = 222

The two 33s cancel out so that leaves 255 as observed.

So you can have the solar input passing straight through yet a further 33 being recycled up and down through the atmosphere which gives a warmer surface but no change in top of atmosphere energy balance.

And without proposing a radiative solution involving DWIR.

The important point then is that the 33 is a function of mass and gravity and NOT composition which is why other planets show similar lapse rate characteristics despite huge variations in composition.

What has been overlooked is the effect of the time delay in the process of converting kinetic to potential and back again and having done that only taking account of one half of the loop.

105. Stephen Wilde says:

And the thicker the atmosphere, the longer the delay in the kinetic / potential exchange and back again, the more energy is locked away in that exchange, the more energy will return to the surface on the down cycle and the higher the surface temperature will become for a given level of solar input.

What matters is delay time and NOT radiative physics.

106. Trick says:

Clivebest 2:14 pm: “..Venus with an optically thick atmosphere there is no “greenhouse effect” as such.”

Since Venus atmosphere is optically thick, radiation emitted by the surface will mostly be absorbed within the atmosphere as Clive writes so radiation emitted to space will mostly originate at some level above Venus surface: the effective emission level (EEL). The difference in Venus Tavg. at surface to Tavg. at EEL altitude commonly called the GHE.

Clive continues: “… there is no back radiation either.” Absorption is not extinction.

107. Trick says:

Stephen 4:38 pm: “..consider that when kinetic energy is converted to potential energy.”

Ok. Your detail post here enables me to better see your KE+PE temp. point.

Conservation of energy: KE+PE = const. in the control volume of Earth’s atm.

At h=0, PE=0 so can find the KE = const. at h=0, find const. = Tavg. = 288K.

KE + PE = 288K = const. w/ net solar constant when converted over the spectrum using the simple formulas.

At h= 0, PE + KE = const…………………………………….0K + 288K = 288K.

At h=100km or whatever*, PE+KE= const. shows…. 288K+ 0K = 288K.

The potential temperature is the temperature the air parcel at TOA would have if brought to Earth surface.

Bringing the parcel down from TOA to effective emitting level (~5km) would show:

At h=EEL, PE+KE = 288K then 33K + 255K = 288K. Right? Yes: Cons. of energy.

*Don’t confuse with high T at extreme altitude, we are talking wayne’s thumb rule & Davids PV=nRT in this thread not high alt. radiative physics, geez.

108. clivebest says:

Stephen,

Your cycling of kinetic energy (heat) to potential energy(height) throughout the troposphere is really the giant heat pump that cools the planet by maintaining the lapse rate. The energy source is the sun and the energy sink is outer space. Entropy is maximised exactly at the DALR or ELR with water vapour present.

109. Stephen Wilde says:

I think one should extend it to the entire atmosphere, surface to space.

Lots goes on in between but the net outcome has to be as I say.

110. Trick says:

Stephen 2:33 pm: “The description from BenAW is pretty much how I understood the basics some 50 years ago.”

We may be getting somewhere with this. (NB: tallbloke these guys are back on radiation so me too applies!)

BenAW 1:39pm: “…earth like planet, no radiation from space coming in (no sun, no backgroundradiation)…Turn on the heat….and by conduction/radiation the molecules heat up…”

BenAW’s earth flux-in then just enough to achieve near surface atm. To=290K and Joe’s eqn. with atm. T>0K emissivity adds the radiative information we need to David’s PV=nRT and wayne’s thumb rule from 1st Law to get Earth’s To=Tavg.=288K ~Teq. 289K down from 302K:

Flux-in – flux out = 0 in LTE

And w/Solar=1370W/m^2, atm emissivity =0.8/2 because atm. radiates up&down equal, albedo=0.3 all measured as couple basic texts show:

1370 * 0.7 – 4*sigma*(1-0.8/2) * Tsurface avg. ^4 = 0 solve for Teq. atm. near surface = 289K.

Cool, Stephen (“lots goes on… but the net outcome has to be as I say”) Wilde, BenAW agree. Well, until the next post anyway…

111. Stephen Wilde says:

The more I think about it the more things fit.

The kinetic / potential exchange is a mechanical process not a radiative one.

It is provoked initially by the sun lifting the atmosphere off the surface in the first place.

Once kinetic is in potential form it is lost to radiative physics until it converts back again.

If the atmospheric composition changes then the amount of energy in potential form at any given moment also changes with no effect on top of atmosphere balance because mass and gravity control the ideal lapse rate as per the Gas Laws.

Changes in the amount of energy in potential form or changes in the speed with which it circulates between surface and space can change climate zone distribution at the surface but not the temperature of the Earth as a whole.

Instead of a change in the Earth’s temperature as seen from space one sees changes in the multiple atmospheric heights and gradients around the globe as the energy throughput changes volume or speed to negate the effect of composition changes.

The result is climate zone shifts which we on the surface see as changing local and regional climates.

A non radiative, pressure based Atmospheric Thermal Effect with no need for DWIR and a self regulating system in which the effect of any human sourced GHGs would be imperceptible because it is based on total atmospheric mass rather than the amount of CO2.

112. Eric Barnes says:

Fascinating conversation.
So more atmospheric mass gives a planet the ability to store more heat in it’s atmosphere before it is radiated to space. The distribution changes slightly and most heat is near the surface).
I’ve often thought it would be ironic if part of the reason for the late 20th century rise in temperatures is a result of not the AGW greenhouse effect, but the mass of CO2 freed from fossil fuels.

113. Trick says:

Stephen 7:04 pm “…more things fit….Changes in the amount of energy in potential form…”

Good. Say PE changes so there is a little more total amount of energy in Earth’s atm. control volume driving Tavg. say = 291K atm. near surface. Whatever, make up a new Tavg. number.

PE + KE = 291K. Total energy constant increased. Temp. KE at surface goes up, exactly equal to potential temp. PE going up at TOA in LTE.

h=0, PE + KE = const. shows 0 + 291 = 291
h=100km, PE + KE = const shows 291 + 0 = 291.

So how does science make that happen at LTE? The radiative balance 1st law eqn. shows at least two ways: 1) increase solar 2) increase atm. emissivity (still holding surface emissivity = 1.0 for now and albedo = 0.3):

1) Increase solar to 1395 W/m^2 (rounded):
1395 * 0.7 – 4*sigma*(1-0.8/2) * Tsurface avg. ^4 = 0 solve for Teq. atm. near surface = 291K.

OR 2) increase atm. emissivity to 0.82 (rounded):
1370 * 0.7 – 4*sigma*(1-0.82/2) * Tsurface avg. ^4 = 0 solve for Teq. atm. near surface = 291K.

Or could be a mixture of 1) and 2), just repeat the measurements of e and So to find out. (Easy to write, hard to do.)

Then new EEL found a little higher in altitude from a sort of complex Caballero formula 5.76 as before.

At h=EEL, PE+KE = 291K then 35K + 256K = 291K (rounded).

The new David PV=nRT field & wayne’s thumb rule T profile found from the new atm. density profile. Pretty cool. Works for less total energy Tavg. = 286K same way, a little less solar and/or a little less atm. emissivity left to the reader. New Tavg. = 286K profile from wayne’s thumb rule.

114. Entropic man says:

Stephen Wilde
Eric Barnes

“I’ve often thought it would be ironic if part of the reason for the late 20th century rise in temperatures is a result of not the AGW greenhouse effect, but the mass of CO2 freed from fossil fuels.”

At last, something testable! Each fossil fuel carbon atom would convert an O2 molecule to a CO2 molecule, with a gain of 6 Atomic Mass Units per molecule. It would show as a small increase in average atmospheric pressure, about 0.04 hectopascals since 1953 . Anyone got data?

115. Stephen Wilde says:

Thanks Trick.

Looking good so far.

Entropic and Eric.

Compared to the pre existing atmospheric mass the extra CO2 from our use would come nowhere.

Note that we are considering CO2 and not carbon. The carbon would be a solid rapidly washed out of the atmosphere and not all that carbon would combine with 02.

Furthermore not all the CO2 rise would be down to humans. There is a possibility that at least some and maybe most of it comes from less ocean absorption as the ocean surfaces warmed naturally.

116. Stephen Wilde says:

Trick.

Note that the oceans control air temperatures so you need to add in the oceans in so far as they would prevent the Tavg at surface from increasing.

Instead, the changed temperature differential between sea and air would induce more winds to eliminate any change in surface or near surface air temperature.

117. wayne says:

Eric Barnes says:
November 30, 2012 at 8:22 pm

I’ve often thought it would be ironic if part of the reason for the late 20th century rise in temperatures is a result of not the AGW greenhouse effect, but the mass of CO2 freed from fossil fuels.

Right Eric, that came to mind here too, lol, but it ain’t much. The O2’s already in the ring and C’s just a lightweight. 😉 I wouldn’t bet on it.

118. Trick says:

Stephen 10:00pm: “…oceans control air temperatures so you need to add in the oceans in so far as they would prevent the Tavg at surface from increasing.”

Or maybe drive Tavg., seems to change each month a bit. LOL.

Actually working on this ever since tallbloke mentioned it in the other GHE drama thread. This is not easy. Have to first make sure I get how the surface emissivity = 1.0 works in the flux-in – flux-out = 0 balance eqn. From there develop a view on how the ocean emissivity changes in the (L&O) split.

As tb mentioned above, an intermediate step is reduce the surface 1.0 to 0.983 think it was, see how that disturbs things. Got all weekend, ha. Need 1 or 2 more ref. texts to arrive.

This thread seems to be the one at the moment (ok, tb?) unless Tim F. gets his new thread going.

[reply] Fine with me as long as Wayne is happy.

119. wayne says:

Stephen, glad you are starting to take a more radiation-less troposphere viewpoint for a moment; it helps digest some of these thoughts. Radiation is always occurring in every cubic centimeter, cubic meter, or 10-meter cube depending on each emission/absorption line’s mean path length but really nothing is happening much there but local equalization of any temperature differences. Equipartition and MB distribution maintain the balances. (but, that is definitely part of what moves the energy always higher, the vertical temperature difference of course)

I’m still a bit skeptical of the way I have structured my explanation and understanding here. Always a skeptic I’ll stay, even on my own thoughts.

What of the window frequencies. That leaks directly to space in a single jump, two, or three. That direct loss must be in some manner within that exponent too. So the DOF value must also be masquerading some of the window loss as if it is the molecular degrees of freedom. Might need a little adjustment in what exactly the number means.

Also, that 2/3 scalar may be but an upper limit, not a true constant. It seems to hold deep in all tropospheres but that exponent value decrease in all three planets as the stratosphere is approached and entered, even negative in the ionosphere as it gets warmer with height. So, may need a bit adjust of meaning on that value too.

But deep in the tropospheres, this is a very curious relation, matching all three profiles.

120. Entropic man says:

tallbloke

Whoops . Added the atomic number, notthe atomic mass. That should read

Stephen Wilde
Eric Barnes

“I’ve often thought it would be ironic if part of the reason for the late 20th century rise in temperatures is a result of not the AGW greenhouse effect, but the mass of CO2 freed from fossil fuels.”

At last, something testable! Each fossil fuel carbon atom would convert an O2 molecule to a CO2 molecule, with a gain of 12 Atomic Mass Units per molecule. It would show as a small increase in average atmospheric pressure, about 0.056 hectopascals since 1953 . Anyone got data?

121. Entropic man says:

Stephen Wilde

“Furthermore not all the CO2 rise would be down to humans. There is a possibility that at least some and maybe most of it comes from less ocean absorption as the ocean surfaces warmed naturally.”

That’s one of the secondary forcing effects nobody is sure of yet. Some sceptics deny it’s happening at all and the work behind the IPCC reports can only estimate a value for it.

122. Stephen Wilde says:

Trick.

“Or maybe drive Tavg., seems to change each month a bit. LOL.”

Agreed. I’ve said that often in the past.

wayne.

The maths and physics of the fine detail is beyond me but I’m sure the concept is right.

I’m also sure that the general concept is not new since I have been aware of it since schooldays but my wording of the explanation might have some novel aspects especially where it segues into the practical climate change consequences.

Of course it is possible (but unlikely) that I constructed my own climate world view without realising that no one else shared it.

While you and Trick continue working on the detail I would ask tallbloke and everyone else who sees the point to push the issue into the public domain as widely as possible.

The AGW accounting error as regards treatment of the kinetic / potential transition and back again should cause quite a stir.

Radiative physics simply fails whilst energy is in potential form. It is a scandal that that seems not to have been picked up previously.

123. wayne says:

David
Stephen

ATE instead of GHE, I agree. When writing you grab an acronym you know everyone is going to recognize and that is how ghe keeps slipping in. As we have seen above with Jupiter with a hydrogen-helium atmosphere it does succeed in radiating away its energy though with more effort being with just three translational dof active, explain that, it surprised me. A Jupiter IR spectrum would be great but can’t seem to find one.

David, thanks for the N&K correction on the Deviner data, I remembered about 185K, I’d love to help explain this 194K –> 288K ATE if possible. The additional wattage needed always resident at surface is 310 W/m2 by that to perform that ATE boost. Hmm. That is also emissivity dependant. If about 65 is the net radiation-only transfer upward from the surface, it is, 80+17 from latent heat and thermals, the 310/.95 emissivity being the 5/6th dimensionally (all but upward), you get 310/.95/(5/6) = 391W/m2@ε=1 –> 288.2K at surface. Pretty close. Can no one visualize that? I can vividly. We are speaking of power to possibly transfer energy, not fluxes.

Some (climatology oriented) in the past have literally thrown up over me mentioning dimensionality, after all this is a 3d universe, but the more and more I look at all of these numbers and their various relations it seems to keep saying that the dimensionality is of prime importance to keep in mind. Guess I have my own way to view things physically. Maybe not in the differential and integration equations but it sure makes it easier to compute, visualize and explain ‘why’ things are the way they are. Well, deferring more on that till later or another thread.

124. Stephen Wilde says:

“I’d love to help explain this 194K –> 288K ATE if possible. The additional wattage needed always resident at surface is 310 W/m2 by that to perform that ATE boost.”

I have no problem in principle with the energy content of the returning kinetic energy at 310W/m2 or any other value for that matter.

Whatever it is, is obviously sufficient to drive the surface temperature up above that predicted from the S-B equation without altering the top of atmosphere energy balance which remains tightly tied to solar input.

The issue of the amount of extra W/m2 at the surface required to boost the surface temperature to that which is observed is wide open for discussion.

There are lots of non radiative mechanisms that could amplify or suppress the effect on surface temperature from returning KE.

Integrating the N & K numbers with our conceptual overview would be a major step forward and would probably give insights into the relationships between various non radiative energy transfer mechanisms.

Perhaps an approach to Ned Nikolov ?

125. wayne says:

I must also admit that this dimensional view of our atmosphere did not originate with me, no, it was after reading and re-reading many times what Miskolczi was stating within his papers, albeit very hard to follow all of the symbols. He might not be exactly correct in every single statement, but so far, I have no reason to doubt the bulk of his work. But, he takes the viewpoint that exactly parallels my view of the science involved.

He is firstly removing from this entire system what we absolutely know is true, always by Kirchhoff’s law. Within all transfers of energy upward vertically toward and eventually out to space, there is a portion of that transfer, only if in the lines of emission and absorption (non-window) are considered, that is precisely equal in all directions or dimensions. Vertically that is his Ea=Ad, that is, emission to the atmosphere (of that portion) is precisely equal to the atmosphere downward flux, just that portion. Whoa, of course. Then he moves to separate what is left over, the portion of the transfers that do move upward. All of that is of averaged-over-time values.

That is how I started to get a much better view of all of these “climatology” mumbo-jumbo explanations. Back radiation? No, not really, that is in the Ea=Ad portion equality. You will see some hard numbers like 2, 3, 6. Those are originated in the dimensional aspects, or that is the way I first try to understand them. Read more on his work, couldn’t hurt your knowledge much but your head might.

126. wayne says:

Clivebest:
Now for the mystery of the lapse rate: Supposing the atmosphere was pure Argon – in other words have no greenhouse gases – zero emissivity. Would there be a lapse rate ? The planet surface would radiate directly to space and be at Teff (255K for Earth). Would there be any convection to drive a lapse rate ? There is no real consensus about this.

Zero emissivity? On convection first, sure, if there is a surface that radiation can reach to warm, which with argon nearly transparency, there would be, and there would be convection, pure thermals. But argon would radiate just like Jupiter’s hydrogen-helium atmosphere does. On collisions, a momentary dipole moment is created and by that dipole argon does absorb and radiate as a gas. All matter absorbs and radiates if not lone atoms. Your example is a bit unreal. But you are right the lapse would be very low, just look at Jupiter, its lapse is about 2.

127. wayne says:

“[reply] Fine with me as long as Wayne is happy.”
Sure, happy as a lark. 😉

128. clivebest says:

Wayne,

I agree with you. There will always be convection on any planet with an atmosphere, because all matter (including Argon) emits some IR at temperature. However you do need some energy flux from the surface to space to maintain a lapse rate. If not then I think we get into trouble with the 2nd law of thermodynamics. I think that is my main point.

Some people argue that differential heating between the equator-poles and night-day would be sufficient to generate a lapse rate even with a theoretical zero emissivity atmosphere.

129. Stephen Wilde says:

Rog.

Although in the past I found points of disagreement with Doug Cotton he seems at one with us on the KE/PE issue as in this thread at Roy Spencer’s site:

Even John O’Sullivan has recently taken the so called Slayer Group towards recognition of a thermal effect from pressure involving the adiabatic lapse rate whereas they were previously denying anything similar to a greenhouse effect at all which somewhat damaged their credibility.

What do you think of the proposition that AGW theory relies upon an accounting error and the overlooking of the thermal effect of the time delay for the KE/PE transition and back again ?

Note what I said back in 2008:

“It is that interruption in the flow of radiant energy in and out which gives rise to a warming effect. The warming effect is a single persistent phenomenon linked to the density of the atmosphere and not the composition. Once the appropriate planetary temperature increase has been set by the delay in transmission through the atmosphere then equilibrium is restored between radiant energy in and radiant energy out.

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

here:

“Greenhouse Confusion Resolved’

Pinning it all down to the length of the KE/PE and PE/KE transition period tops and tails the whole thing very nicely because it firmly nails the culprit as mass rather than composition.

CO2 has no chance of changing total atmospheric mass on Earth significantly however much we produce so the only remaining question is as to how far our CO2 emissions could change the circulation pattern.

I would suggest barely at all and most likely indiscernible against the 1000 mile latitudinal shifts that occurred naturally from MWP to LIA and LIA to date.

Perhaps a new thread devoted solely to the significance of the non radiative KE/PE energy exchange ?

130. Stephen Wilde says:

“Some people argue that differential heating between the equator-poles and night-day would be sufficient to generate a lapse rate even with a theoretical zero emissivity atmosphere”

I am one of them.

Even the unevenness of the surface would be enough to do it as the sun heats different slopes differentially.

The uneven heating of a spherical surface is simply a grander version of differential heating of uneven ground.

And you would even get a circulation above a perfectly smooth flat surface from a point source of energy because the angle of incidence would still vary across the surface.

I think I went into those points on the old N&K thread and at WUWT where Willis Eschenbach lost his rag and started abusing so called ‘pressure heads’.

131. tallbloke says:

This discussion is going very well. 🙂

I’ll be happy to set up some further threads where we can split out some sub-discussions to nail down some specific aspects. Please formalise and submit the intro’s for those threads here so I can link back to them. That way, everyone can follow back the trail to this overarching discussion later.

There are several issues which led to me excluding Doug Cotton from commenting here. They include:

1) Pushing Claes Johnson’s ‘pseudo-scattering’ hypothesis as established fact backed by empirical evidence despite repeated requests to produce the evidence or cease doing so.

2) Presenting the ideas of others as his own ideas and giving no credit to the originators.

3) Causing too much general confusion with constantly shifting arguments and definitions. 600 comment threads may be fun while they are happening, but are useless for later analysis.

Part of the reason I came down to London was to meet with Benny Peiser and Guy Leech to discuss the possibility of setting up some high level seminars for the discussion of the science.

I emailed Karl Zeller and also Miklos Zagoni to try to get Ned Nikolov and Ferenc Miskolczi to enter this discussion. Ned and Karl prefer to continue developing their own theory at their own pace, but send Wayne their best wishes and encourage him to ‘keep digging’.

No word from Miklos or Ferenc. Somewhere on this blog there is a link to Miklos’ layman’s intro to Ferenc’s theory. Talkshop prize to the finder.

132. Stephen Wilde says:

Thanks, Rog. Points noted.

To my mind the whole debate now boils down to whether the temperature of the Earth (as a whole, not just portions of the so called ‘surface’) can be changed by variations in atmospheric composition or whether one must change atmospheric mass first.

Note that to change the temperature of the Earth as a whole one must first alter the top of atmosphere energy balance (for a while at least) but that doesn’t happen from compositional changes alone as evidenced by the observation that the top of atmosphere energy balance remains tightly tied to solar input whatever happens to surface temperature beneath an atmosphere.

That is also supported empirically by the distance from sun adjusted temperature profile in the atmosphere of Venus and now possibly also Jupiter as per wayne’s figures.

Trick and wayne are doing fine work in trying to develop some maths from first principles but I think that it was widely accepted 50 years ago that the temperature of a planet with an atmosphere was a matter of mass and not composition.

The point about the time delay in energy transmission inherent in the process of changing KE to PE and back again seems pretty incontrovertible when one thinks about it and,if correct, that would serve as adequate proof that it is mass that counts rather than composition because all molecules in the atmosphere are involved in that non radiative mechanical process.

The radiative characteristics of different molecules become irrelevant.

If it is a matter of mass then AGW theory dies a death because we could not ever produce enough mass from our emissions to alter the Atmospheric Thermal Effect significantly and that would mean a pretty insignificant change in circulation from our emissions too.

So, we need to publicise the fact that the whole issue now boils down to the simple question:

Mass or composition ?

And show that it must be mass because the whole of the atmosphere participates in the KE/PE energy exchange.

A new thread addressing those points would give an opportunity for any sensible opposition to those ideas to come to the fore and if none are successful then that would take us to the end game.

Your could start it off with this post.

133. Wayne,

You say: I’d love to help explain this 194K –> 288K ATE if possible. The additional wattage needed always resident at surface is 310 W/m2 by that to perform that ATE boost.

I disagree. It is a big mistake to assume that the only way to raise the temperature of a volume of material is to increase the ‘wattage’ flowing through it.

For the earth, the input ‘wattage’ is FIXED by the level of insolation, which is itself FIXED. Therefore you can’t simply invent additional input watts from nowhere to explain the temperature rise that occurs if you change the atmospheric composition. In the case of gases, their thermal resistance to energy flow is related to their specific heat (heat capacity per unit volume per degree rise in temperature). So changing from composition A to composition B will do the trick if B’s thermal resistance to energy flow is greater than A’s.

The Earth’s ATE effect is simply due to the atmosphere’s thermal resistance to energy flow which is obviously much higher in our current atmosphere than if we had no atmosphere at all!

The point is that the ATE is indeed a thermal effect, not a radiative transfer effect. If you change Earth’s atmospheric composition by, say, doubling the volume of CO2 from 0.04% to 0.08%, this will indeed raise the surface temperature by a tiny, tiny (and completely unmeasurable) fraction of a degree due entirely to its miniscule additional thermal resistance and not at all due to its radiative properties.

[NOTE FOR PEDANTS AND TROLLS: Ironically, the ATE effect breaks down completely if there are NO radiative gases at all in the atmosphere because it depends critically on them as cooling agents towards the top of the atmosphere to release energy to space as radiation. But there are already plenty enough radiative gases (mainly water vapour) in today’s earth atmosphere to achieve this necessary ‘heat sink’ cooling effect.]

134. Stephen Wilde says:

David.

The surface temperature increase from more GHGs (assuming no significant increase in atmospheric mass) would be negated by the atmospheric and oceanic response.

In so far as our emissions increased total mass there would be a temperature rise but we would never be able to measure it.

I suspect that the net effect of GHGs is cooling because of the additional radiative outlet for energy to space but the ocean and air circulations would just slow down to negate the effect.

If there are no radiative gases at all there is still ATE because of conduction and subsequent convection. I went into that in some detail somewhere but no longer sure which thread.

“due entirely to its miniscule additional thermal resistance and not at all due to its radiative properties.”

Spot on. The thermal resistance being related to mass.

135. wayne says:

Hi David,

I agree with you disagreement. “I disagree. It is a big mistake to assume that the only way to raise the temperature of a volume of material is to increase the ‘wattage’ flowing through it.”

I wasn’t meaning radiation flowing through, your right-on there, that is solar insolation bound and fixed, to tie to temperature. I was trying to speak of the radiatant power bound right at the surface, you know, all except T&K’s 396 minus 333 for example. Of all of the ‘power’ at the surface there is but a mere 61-66 Wm-2 of radiation ever actually flowing upward away from the surface on average. Koorin data agrees there too. But a cold mean 195K surface with no atmosphere has MORE radation leaving than that (but it lacks thermal and latent heat leaving). So just scratch that comment, I should not have let myself get side-tracked.

136. Trick says:

David 11:59 am: “…change Earth’s atmospheric composition…this will indeed raise the surface temperature due entirely to its miniscule additional thermal resistance and not at all due to its radiative properties.”

Stephen 12:10 pm: “The surface temperature increase from more GHGs (assuming no significant increase in atmospheric mass) would be negated by the atmospheric and oceanic response.”

Stephen 11:43 am: “…radiative characteristics of different molecules become irrelevant….boils down to the simple question: Mass or composition ?”

Et. al. …..

******

Folks – Note I showed 11/30 8:28 pm how the 1st law very basically allows an increase in surface temperature 289K to 291K due entirely to atm. emissivity and affecting T profile all the way to TOA (KE+PE = higher const.) & there is no problem with 2nd law and no problem with PV=nRT or wayne’s thumb rule either:

2) increase atm. emissivity (from 0.80) to 0.82 (rounded):
1370 * 0.7 – 4*sigma*(1-0.82/2) * Tsurface avg. ^4 = 0 solve for Teq. atm. near surface = 291K.

David – what do you know, the near surface atm. temperature goes up due to atm. radiative properties alone, how do you explain?

Stephen – radiative characteristics of different molecules are relevant! Answer to your 50 yr. old question is atm. composition matters: Surface temp. rise can be from the atm. composition alone, breaks no laws.

Stephen – You now have a sound math platform to debate your thesis that “…GHGs would be negated by the atmospheric and oceanic response…”. All you have to do is show that if the atm. emissivity increases from 0.8 to 0.82 (say from more infrared-active gas ppm) would be then offset by an equal and opposite albedo increase from 0.30 to 0.32, & presto! – surface T goes back to Tavg. = 289K (rounded):

1370 * 0.68 – 4*sigma*(1-0.82/2) * Tsurface avg. ^4 = 0 solve for Teq. atm. near surface = 289K.

Although I can buy there is an albedo change with emissivity change, I cannot yet buy that global system is exactly stable to find the exact albedo change necessary (.32!) & implement keeping surface T the same (Stephen’s thesis).

137. Stephen,

I think we are now in complete agreement… although there is just a hint that you are hedging your bets by asserting that if by any chance there is also a radiative warming effect, then atmospheric convection would in any case completely offset it.

If so I would disagree because I don’t believe there is any temperature-raising effect whatsoever due to the radiative properties (as opposed to the normal thermal properties) of radiative gases.

138. Stephen Wilde says:

David.

I’m currently inclined to the view that there is no net radiative warming effect but currently I can’t prove so I’m hedging my bets in view of the fact that it doesn’t matter in my scenario.

Whatever the radiative effect of any change in the atmosphere which seeks to affect air temperature the thermal inertia of the oceans won’t let it happen.

Furthermore once one involves the entire atmospheric mass in the process of raising the surface temperature our tiddly change to CO2 becomes indiscernible.

So on that basis I think it is ‘job done’ regardless of all the rest of the details.

Trick.

As regards emissivity and albedo changes that is where one has to start considering cloudiness changes that arise from the circulation shifts.

There are a couple of complications there involving the oceans because more GHGs (if there is a positive net thermal effect) would send the climate zones poleward allowing more, rather than less, energy into the oceans for a warming effect and then the pressure constraints at the ocean surface (as to how much energy the oceans can retain) would result in the extra energy coming straight out again.

Of course the opposite if they have a net negative effect.

But, as before, the Earth’s temperature would stay much the same though with a faster throughput of energy altering the regional distribution of that energy.

To cover that aspect you would need to extend your maths to deal with the energy flows in and out of the oceans but we don’t have the data and internal ocean variability constantly varies the flux in and out.

So we just have to work with the concepts on their own and see if they fit real world observations over time.

For the moment, if we are all agreed that we can now prove that the entire atmospheric mass is involved in the Atmospheric Thermal Effect then AGW theory as regards CO2 on its own becomes untenable and we can then move on to other stuff.

Raising atmospheric CO2 from 0.04% to 0.08% is not going to affect the Atmospheric Thermal Effect at all so all suggestions of a significant temperature increase from doubling or even quadrupling of CO2 have to stop right there.

139. wayne says:

Trick, the problem is you think you are increasing the emissivity but actually, by that one’s complement term, you are actually lowing the emissivity, and that makes sense to me, less emissivity will raise the temperature, the more it can emit the lower the temperature.

(1-0.80/2) = ε = 0.60
solve(1370(0.7)-4*σ*ε*T^4=0, T) = 289.74K

(1-0.82/2) = ε = 0.59
solve(1370(0.7)-4*σ*ε*T^4=0, T) = 290.96K

A couple of questions, how much change of the concentration of co2, for example, equates to a change in the atmosphere’s emissivity by 0.01. I never had questioned that. Nahle calculated from Hottel the current emissivity of co2 at it’s concentration, very small and would take a very large change to alter the atmosphere’s meaningfully, but then I don’t have Hottel’s book to check it.

Two, does a gas mixture’s mean heat capacity ratio (f) determine the effective emissivity of the gas mixture as a whole. I never had questioned that either but that’s an interesting one. The ‘f’ relates directly to d.o.f. and the d.o.f. is directly related to the radiative properties, aren’t they?

Even though you got that backwards that raises some good questions.

140. Trick says:

Stephen 3:23 pm: “Raising atmospheric CO2 from 0.04% to 0.08% is not going to affect the Atmospheric Thermal Effect at all…”

Don’t know what ATE is but still to have that view based on science, need to show how atm. emissivity 0.8 changes. Does e go to 0.82 under that scenario? Dunno but possible, I have not run across a relevant paper or text but possibly there is one someone knows about, would be interesting.

141. Stephen Wilde says:

“radiative characteristics of different molecules are relevant! Answer to your 50 yr. old question is atm. composition matters: Surface temp. rise can be from the atm. composition alone, breaks no laws.”

Well, composition clearly affects the actual lapse rate in individual layers. Water vapour in the troposphere and ozone in the stratosphere giving opposite lapse rates due to the composition differences.

However if such composition induced changes were to take the whole atmosphere away from the ideal lapse rate set by gravity and mass then the atmosphere would be lost so it cannot happen.

The circulation changes must prevent it by providing a compensating adjustment elsewhere in the system.

The basic law is that the slope of the ideal lapse rate is set by mass and gravity and the height of the atmosphere is set by solar input.

Allowing composition to alter the ideal lapse rate would break that law and few planets would retain atmospheres.

I think the problem is a narrow interpretation of surface temperatures.

What really matters is balance of energy exchange at top of atmosphere. Energy out must always equal energy in to retain an atmosphere.

It is the temperature of the Earth as seen from space that has to comply with the S-B equation. The distribution of energy below the top of atmosphere can be anything.

So if some of the land surfaces register a little more warmth from time to time that does not mean that the planet is any warmer as seen from space or that the total energy content is any higher. It could just be a consequence of a different energy distribution in three dimensions from bottom of oceans to top of atmosphere.

Or it could be a result of internal system variability which I think is what all that the satellites are recording given that they record smaller changes than many of the surface sensors on land.

Bear in mind too that when solar variations occur they seem to result in composition changes differentially at different levels which I believe is the mechanism whereby the sun changes climate zone positioning from the top down.

Then again, changes in the rate of energy release from the oceans operate via composition changes near the surface by altering low level humidity.

But through all that for 4 billion years the top of atmosphere energy balance and so the temperature of Earth as seen from space has pretty much been tied to solar input as per S-B.

I think the answer lies in the circulatory adjustments speeding up and slowing down energy throughput when compositional changes occur with the actual amount of energy tied up as PE remaining the same unless one increases mass, gravity or insolation.

Your maths relies on compositional changes altering the total amount of PE but not speed of throughput.

I suspect that in the real world it cannot happen.

Something to do with wayne’s degrees of freedom in an atmosphere which expands when anything tries to make it diverge from the ideal (as opposed to actual lapse rate).

Simply put, compositional changes alter atmospheric heights but not the total amount of energy held as PE so if any gas tries to hold onto more energy than permitted by mass and gravity it just leaks out to space faster instead of raising the amount of PE.

The expansion gives more degrees of freedom in an outward direction disposing of any extra energy that compositional changes try to retain.

Works the other way too.

Have you noticed just how much the upper atmosphere expands and contracts in response to solar variations ?

Rather a lot apparently, but top of atmosphere radiative balance stays very stable.

.

142. Trick says:

Wayne 3:33 pm: Oh man. NO. Not backwards. Global atm. ε = 0.80 measured 0.7 in dry arctic, 0.95 in humid tropics. Not 0.6. global.

0.8 is divided by 2 because half atm. radiation flux from being T>0K goes UP out to space from EEL and half goes down toward surface. It is subtracted from 1.0 because that is the surface emissivity UP (1.0-0.8/2). Double check a relevant basic Atmospheric Radiation balance text (suggest Petty or Bohren) and report back. Find it in the 1st few chapters after basics, and before complexity added.

Amazing this simple text book balance works for Earth, but it does. It works for Mars too. Get this, and you can move to more complex issues or perturbations.

wayne continues: “Nahle calculated from Hottel the current emissivity of co2 at it’s concentration”
Hottel ref.?

Wayne: “The ‘f’ relates directly to d.o.f. and the d.o.f. is directly related to the radiative properties, aren’t they?”

Not the one to ask, but I think you might have explained above, right?

143. Trick says:

Stephen 3:56 pm: “However if such composition induced changes were to take the whole atmosphere away from the ideal lapse rate set by gravity and mass then the atmosphere would be lost so it cannot happen.”

Not a science based argument here Stephen, I have been meaning to point this out. Approx. lapse rate and atm. escaping to space physics both related since containing g, but to be lost to space the molecules have to achieve escape velocity. Many hydrogen molecules were able to so do & departed long ago, but the heavier molecules O,N luckily mostly cannot achieve the necessary speed on Earth. If interested, I can add a few more science details in the coming days.

144. Trick says:

Stephen 3:56 pm: “Allowing composition to alter the ideal lapse rate would break that law and few planets would retain atmospheres.”

No. Escape velocity is the key physics.

145. Stephen Wilde says:

Trick.

If a compositional change takes the ideal lapse rate away from that permitted by mass and gravity so as to result in heating the the atmosphere would just keep accumulating energy indefinitely or until the composition changed in the other direction.

Assuming the composition did not change back again the heat would just keep building up until most of not all the atmospheric molecules reached their escape velocities.

Note too that atmospheric molecules are constantly being stripped away by the solar wind anyway so full escape velocity need not be reached for molecules to be lost.

The atmospheric molecules would just keep accumulating more and more kinetic energy until they joined the solar wind as it passed the Earth.

Would take a long time admittedly but after 4 billion years we wouldn’t have had much left by now.

146. Trick says:

Stephen 3:56 pm: “Your maths relies on compositional changes altering the total amount of PE but not speed of throughput. I suspect that in the real world it cannot happen.”

A decent but unproven suspicion. Galileo once posted on his blog the suspicion maybe the Earth rotates instead, but other beliefs posting elsewhere sort of forced him to hold back. Eventually beliefs converged to right physics.

Gotta’ show you have the right physics in your suspicion.

Along these lines, I went and got a copy of Heilbron’s “Companion”: “…modern science is a discovery as well as invention. It was a discovery that nature generally acts regularly enough to be described by laws, and even by mathematics; and it required invention to devise the techniques, abstractions, apparatus, and organization for exhibiting the regularities and securing their law-like descriptions.”

I mention Galileo above because Heilbron starts off the whole 900 pages of science with this preface:

“Eppure si muove” – “still it moves” – quipped Pope John Paul II as he hobbled on his newly repaired hip to preside over a synod of bishops in 1994. Everyone understood the unspoken ref. to Galileo’s apocryphal muttered defiance 331 years earlier during his forced recantation of his detestable opinion that the earth turns. The Pope joked that he too was a martyr to science.”

Stephen 4:33pm: “Assuming the composition did not change back again…until most of not all the atmospheric molecules reached their escape velocities.”

No. The law-like description of the new composition EEL means altitude would raise a bit radiating more power from a cooler location and LTE balance would be achieved even if go to 96% CO2 like Venus’ very much higher EEL LTE balance.

What if EEL = escape velocity? Hmmmm….

147. Trick says:

Stephen 4;33pm: “Note too that atmospheric molecules are constantly being stripped away by the solar wind anyway so full escape velocity need not be reached for molecules to be lost.”

Yes, and being replaced by out gassing from core. Discussion of the rates is interesting, not here.

148. Stephen Wilde says:

Trick.

Can you show that compositional changes would add to total PE rather than speed of throughput ?

I have a few bits of evidence suggesting that speed is what changes such as:

i) relatively stable global humidity despite climate changes. Precipitation must change to match evaporation.

ii) Steady optical depth as per Miskoczi’s findings. Humidity seems to decline when CO2 increases.

iii) Climate zone shifts occurring in response to thermal changes.

iv) Cloudiness responding to solar variability (which acts on the Earth via composition changes in the atmosphere)

v) Increased outgoing OLR during the recent warming spell and now decreasing OLR with apparent stasis or cooling.

What do you have to suggest that total PE increases from composition changes ?

It all looks like a change in speed of throughput to me.

“What if EEL = escape velocity? Hmmmm….”

Quite.

And as the lighter molecules boiled off the EEF would descend towards the surface, eventually reaching it with atmosphere gone.

149. Stephen Wilde says:

“Yes, and being replaced by out gassing from core”

Agreed but the more the actual lapse rate diverged from the ideal lapse rate the sooner it would in turn be boiled away.

150. Wayne,

Re. my November 29, 2012 at 7:49 pm piece, I have now realised that I “mis-remembered” the sequence of steps needed to demonstrate that it is possible to compute the temperature Tz at any height z in a planet’s atmosphere if you know basic details about the planet (g, surface area) and its atmosphere (total mass, specific heats, etc.) but without needing to take into account the radiative properties of any of the constituent gases.

It was almost right but I now realise I needed one more input value, namely To, the temperature at ground level. This does not in any way affect the conclusion because there are well established empirical values for To for both earth and Venus. And these are the two most interesting planets because they exhibit extreme differences in concentrations of radiative gases (earth nearly 0%; Venus nearly 100%).

The reason To is needed is because the surface temperature is dependant not only on Po, the surface pressure, but also on the fixed rate of flow of energy through the atmosphere, originating from the Sun. By defining To we effectively take into account the planet’s distance from the Sun, a requirement I mentioned originally if we are to corroborate Harry Huffman’s extraordinary earth-Venus empirical findings.

When I am back from holiday next week I will check my spreadsheets and re-post a more carefully considered revised specification.

151. Trick says:

Stephen 5:06 pm: “…evidence suggesting that speed is what changes…”

If the atm. emissivity goes 0.8 to 0.82, and thus KE+PE = higher const., and LTE has higher surface Tavg. =291K, then it is easy to believe speed changes. Does speed (KE) increase cause superstorm Sandy?

Check the relevant blogs, some will be like Galileo’s some like the Pope’s. With that historic revelation, I take a break, appreciated by others I suppose.

152. Trick says:

Ahhh geez, one more.

David 5:19 pm sees the To issue, finds the Venera, Mariner, Magellan missions valuable.

Stephen 5:07 pm: Approx. lapse rate settles to new value on Cp change, exact lapse settles to new value based on density, P profile at T=291K, no boiling away. Earth T at EEL still far from escape velocity.

Going out for a piña colada myself, but I prefer scotch, expensive.

153. tallbloke says:

Kristian:” It turns out that of the three negative fluxes (regulating the rate and magnitude of heat loss from the surface) only the change in latent heat transfer really matters”

I think this fact plugs straight into Jelbring’s thesis on wind controlled climate.

https://tallbloke.wordpress.com/2012/11/17/limited-availability-wind-controlled-climate-thesis-by-hans-jelbring/

154. Stephen Wilde says:

“Does speed (KE) increase cause superstorm Sandy?”

If only it were that simple.

At present the system is slowing down but that leads to jets waving all over place, a smaller number of larger longer lasting storms going off in odd directions (such as Sandy) and more extremes of all kinds.

When the system is speeding up it is better all round because bad stuff moves on sooner.

155. Stephen Wilde says:

“Stephen 5:07 pm: Approx. lapse rate settles to new value on Cp change, exact lapse settles to new value based on density, P profile at T=291K, no boiling away. Earth T at EEL still far from escape velocity”

If the imbalance continues it doesn’t ever settle down. Heat just keeps building up indefinitely.

The atmosphere gets higher and higher, thinner and thinner and the top gets skimmed off by the solar wind and as time passes the lower density above allows the solar wind to skim off molecules at lower and lower levels.

156. wayne says:

Trick says:
December 1, 2012 at 4:08 pm

Wayne 3:33 pm: Oh man. NO. Not backwards. Global atm. ε = 0.80 measured 0.7 in dry arctic, 0.95 in humid tropics. Not 0.6. global.

0.8 is divided by 2 because half atm. radiation flux from being T>0K goes UP out to space from EEL and half goes down toward surface. It is subtracted from 1.0 because that is the surface emissivity UP (1.0-0.8/2).

Double check a relevant basic Atmospheric Radiation balance text (suggest Petty or Bohren) and report back. Find it in the 1st few chapters after basics, and before complexity added.

Amazing this simple text book balance works for Earth, but it does. It works for Mars too. Get this, and you can move to more complex issues or perturbations.

I can’t believe you are tossing authority at me Trick.

Stating the equivalent of that equation but more recognizable:

TSI/4*(1-α) or TSI*(1-α)/4, that is the total solar irradiance adjusted for albedo α and divided by four as if the surface of the entire sphere is equally illuminated. We all have seen this used thousands of times, I personally don’t think that is a realistic viewpoint, but let’s go on. The value you use here is 239.75 Wm-2. This is very recognizable as the OLR (outgoing longwave radiation) or equivalently the mean solar input as seen (unrealistic) in climatology.

(1 – ξ/2) σT^4, the σT^4 is the emissivity less version of the SB law and the (1 – ξ/2) is an emissivity from the non-idealistic SB equation. But xi (ξ) is being used as a subtraction fraction from the ‘one’ total maximum power against absolute zero.

I do get a meaning. Your 0.80/2 is just 0.40 and you are decreasing the power from that hypothetical EEL (effective emission level) at about 5.5 km in altitude. This is where a surface at T with an emissivity at 0.60 would exactly counteract the downward emissions of the 239.75 W/m2 at the EEL or any other single shell above the surface at that temperature. And that calculates perfectly. If the surface has an emissivity of 0.59 or (1-0.82/2) instead of 0.60 or (1-0.80/2) then the surface must be at a higher temperature and that also calculates perfectly.

So don’t please don’t tell me Oh man, NO. I do realize what this equation is saying. I think it is you that didn’t really look further into the equation itself. Also, the EEL has no existence I reality. It is but a mathematical construct. Not all transfers in any atmosphere are strictly radiative so it can not really ‘exist’.

Can you tell me what you think this ξ is, you know, the definition? It seems more like an anti-emissivity.

This is way of topic and I’m not stopping anyone from continuing but I won’t be following this type of hypothetical conjectures any further, I’ve had more that three years of it and a good bit of it is wrong. Radiative transfer science at its core is doing just fine; it is when it is being applied to planetary atmospheres where they always seem to go off of the track of reality.

157. wayne says:

Trick, sorry, a correction before you catch it: I meant to remove this wrong initial thought of mine:

“Your 0.80/2 is just 0.40 and you are decreasing the power from that hypothetical EEL (effective emission level) is at about 5.5 km in altitude.”

The emissivity in that equation only applies to the surface, not the EEL. At first I cofused those myself but missed one portion that should have also been removed as I wrote that comment. i have a bad habit of re-reading what I write but find I am concentrationg on spelling, punctuation and grammar and not the content and it does bite regularly. 😉

158. Trick says:

wayne 11:37 pm: “Can you tell me what you think this ξ is, you know, the definition?”

So*(1-albedo)/4 – Teq^4*sigma*(1-e/2) = 0 or flux-in – flux-out net of atm. = 0 at LTE, big picture.

Defined eqn. 1.76 and 1.72 Bohren/Clauthiaux 1.6 p.33, 35 which Joe P. 1st wrote up in comments on the GHE thread and to which I added downwelling half the atm. – 0.8/2 i.e. the DWIR readily measured:

1370 * 0.7 – 4*sigma*(1-0.8/2) * Tsurface avg. ^4 = 0 solve for Teq. atm. near surface Teq.=289K

Epsilon (here e) is Earth atm. emissivity averaged over its emission spectrum & is also readily measured. Your intuition is correct, but wording weak. It is not an anti-emissivity but subtracts since it is downward flux reducing the upward flux-out. This atm. –e/2 term acts to reduce cooling at night when solar = 0 but still active during day time solar heating also.

This radiative equilibrium big picture flux-in – flux-out eqn. is a bit of a stretch to analogue the atm., but useful for basic physics & to frame hypotheses if used judiciously. For example as I used it, if e of the atm. alone is increasing (.8 to .82) this suggests temperatures in the lower atm. could increase in relative magnitude w/solar held constant.

wayne continues: “I think it is you that didn’t really look further into the equation itself.”

wayne – YOU are on the right track, digging into this eqn. – no matter what further I did to look into it.

In gory detail, derivation is a long write-up of 6 pages, but an interesting challenge, I may try. It is just much easier to look it up, b/c you get what came before, figures & eqns. And doing the research on your own is much more meaningful. I’m not appealing to authority in the grand blogging tradition (a lesson learned for some) just kindly providing a ref. for ya’. Bohren,Clothiaux 1.6 eqn. 1.72 is the one I happen to like the best, the guy is so easy to read & lotsa’ chuckles in with the spinach, but choose your own.

And yes, EEL is another math construct to see the basic physics better. Physically Caballero text tells us, “the effective emission level corresponds to the optimal trade-off between high density (which gives high emissivity) and little overlying atmosphere to permit the emitted radiation to escape to deep space.”

Barring typo.s anyway…ha.

159. wayne says:

Thanks Trick for that calm and complete answer, at least it is now well defined. Ok, now the equation would be correct if radiation was the only form of energy transfer within an atmosphere. Really, I now can view that equation perfectly real and accurate in that light.

My long term problem with such equations though, even though mathematically perfectly correct in the math and variables, and absolutely correct if any ‘planet’ is lit in every direction with a much smaller radiance and everything is then completely isotropic everywhere and might as well be plane parallel, but all of that gets too far from reality and correctness for me. Climate science seems to have its roots in that type view and equations, books of them, hundreds of thousands of posts and comments using that viewpoint and I have no doubt that the equation you used is probably in the GCM’s of today. I just don’t think those will ever bring a correct understanding so I’ve taken a new tack.

A number of years ago I got involved in integrating the solar system and long equations don’t bother me per se. The final form I was using took three lines to write out, had about ten terms, many being integrations themselves, about fifty variables within when the relativity is handled. But the Newtonian first approximation terms handled all but the small relativity corrections pretty close. It does precisely solve as it should or much faster without the relativity corrections.

So why not approach planetary atmospheres with that same approach. Climatology in forty years has ended up with GCM’s that seem not to accurately solve the most basic term temperature.

So you have mass, radius, orbit, solar irradiance, the gases mixture properties and the atmosphere’s mass. Can an equation be found to merge these relations, first approximations first and if radiation does not even enter until later terms, fine. This is but the start of that trek and I found it rather surprising just how much can be held in the very first term and it is in thermodynamics, not radiative transfer. Radiation will have it’s hand in the finer terms (or that is what I am going to attempt). Remove the commonality from the system and then attempt to parameterize the variances from base variables, term by term.

Many branches of science have had moments when each new generation standing on the shoulders of the great men in books and equations of the prior just to find that the base is in quicksand. I have my hunch that climate science has done just that. I don’t know if it was Arrhenius in 1904’s book or Plass in ’54 but it seems to me someone took the wrong track long ago.

See, that it-is-all-in-the-radiation or radiation-can-solve-it-all mentality is what I am trying to get away from right now so most of the books using that approach are of little help. Yes all radiation leaves by radiation but that alone does not seem to deserve it stature.

160. BenAW says:

Hi Wayne
I think I can save you a lot of time. Contact me if you will on: ben at wtrs dot nl

Ben

161. Stephen Wilde says:

One cannot rely on radiative transfer equations at all because whilst in potential form energy is invisible to the process of radiation either in or out of a planet with an atmosphere.

Furthermore, the amount of energy held in potential form is variable due to the variable speed of non radiative processes.

And, above all, the kinetic to potential transition and back again takes variable periods of time.

None of that is even touched upon by radiative transfer equations.

Yet it is those non radiative considerations that create the temperature increase at a planetary surface which causes that surface to be warmer than predicted by the S-B equation which is itself based on radiative transfers only.

Radiation is only that which is left over after all the non radiative processes have run their course.

Once there is an atmosphere the energy movements within that atmosphere are ruled by the Gas Laws which are a purely mechanical process involving the interaction between gravity and matter. Radiative physics tells us nothing about that process.

Composition of the atmosphere is very important to the internal structure of the atmosphere and to the way it moves about internally but, in the end, the infinite ways in which that atmosphere can reconfigure itself in 3 dimensions allows it to always reconcile the net outcome of those mechanical processes with the laws of radiative physics that apply outside the atmosphere.

Quite simply, the Gas Laws bridge the gap between the mechanical processes dominating within an atmosphere and the radiative processes dominating outside that atmosphere.

At base, the higher temperature within an atmosphere simply represents the slower rate of energy transfer through the non radiative processes as compared to the speed of radiative processes.

The larger the time gap the higher the surface temperature.

But, get this, the length of time delay is a function only of mass and gravity which then gives us the slope of the lapse rate.

The surface temperature is a function only of the amount of solar energy available from the radiative source to flow through the atmosphere.

Composition can only alter the relative speeds of the various different non radiative processes but in doing so it potentially upsets the equilibrium between radiative energy in and radiative energy out.

But remember that it is the Gas Laws that reconcile any mismatches between radiative and non radiative processes.

Whenever composition alters the relative balances between non radiative processes it is the Gas Laws that reconfigure the circulation to remove the mismatch with radiative processes.

So how do the Gas Laws achieve that ?

We go back to the distribution of KE and PE within the atmosphere.

Whenever a mismatch between radiative and non radiative processes begins to emerge as a result of composition changes then that emerging mismatch will be represented by changes in the local and regional distribution in three dimensions of KE relative to PE.

Changes in the distribution of KE relative to PE involve movements within the atmosphere.

Those movements in the atmosphere alter the energy flow through the atmosphere by adjusting the speeds of the different non radiative processes relative to one another so there is no longer a mismatch between radiative and non radiative processes at top of atmosphere.

To prevent composition changes from affecting total system energy content and average planetary temperature the Gas Laws move the relative concentrations of KE and PE around to instantly cancel the potentially disruptive effects of composition changes.

Any questions ?

162. Stephen Wilde says:

Note that the ideal lapse rate differs from the actual lapse rates within an atmosphere because it is simply a mathematical construct based on the maximum rate of temperature decline with height that enables a given planet with a particular strength of gravitational field to retain an atmosphere with a given amount of mass when subjected to insolation.

If the rate of decline with height were to be faster than the ideal rate then the flow of energy through would be faster than that coming in and the atmosphere would freeze to the surface.

If the rate of decline with height were to be slower than the ideal rate then the flow of energy through would be slower than that coming in and the system would heat up with the atmosphere expanding outwards indefinitely and being stripped away by the solar wind.

The actual lapse rates are highly variable but must always net out to the ideal lapse rate if an atmosphere is to be retained.

The Gas Laws maintain the system by shuffling KE and PE around in three dimensions to ensure that the ideal lapse rate is always met with radiation in always matching radiation out so that the atmosphere never freezes or boils away.

It is that shuffling around of KE and PE which alters the relative strengths of the various non radiative energy transfer processes resulting in climate zone shifts and climate change.

And since it involves ALL the mass in the atmosphere AGW theory concerning the effects of GHGs alone fails.

163. tallbloke says:

Ben: I’d prefer it if the discussion was kept in the open here. Please provide a synopsis which can be used as an opener for a new thread for discussion of your angle on this.

Trick: “This radiative equilibrium big picture flux-in – flux-out eqn. is a bit of a stretch to analogue the atm., but useful for basic physics & to frame hypotheses if used judiciously.”

As I said earlier, the radiative solution is ‘symptomatic’ of the physical actualite. As such, it provides a valid ‘checksum’ of the energy flow, but is not causative except for the final emission to space, being the planetary cooling system, and for those limited situations where downward radiative flux exceeds upward radiative flux in places where conduction and convection are very limited – e.g. in winter polar regions with cloud cover. Here it is locally effective but the energies are small compared to the global situation, where convection and latent heat transfers of energy in the troposphere massively outweigh the radiative component.

So the question becomes: what are the phsyical processes which really underpin the convection and latent heat transfer. This is where the question of the effect of gravity on the mass of the atmosphere comes into the picture. It increases the air pressure (and density) as you move from higher to lower altitude, and in combination with the throughput of solar energy and the radiative action near the tropopause losing heat to space makes the surface much warmer than the cloud tops.

Finding the underlying physics which can quantify this has been an interesting journey. Harry Dale-Huffman’s insights and discovery of the similarity of Venus and Earth’s lapse rates and temperatures at similar pressures (taking into account solar distance) started the ball rolling. Nikolov and Zeller moved things further along with their development of equations which fit the obeserved characteristics of a larger number of planetary bodies and moons. Now Wayne has made the discovery of a quantitative relation which leads us to study the microscopic behaviour of molecules as they express their kinetic energy through different modes of vibration. His new theory appears to fit Earth and Venus and now may possibly be extended to Jupiter too.

There could be further discovery to be made in finding out how ‘degrees of freedom’ of molecular vibration are affected by differing pressure.

This is real scientific discovery and discussion in action, and after modification of this comment in the light of criticism, I’d like to use it as the basis for introducing a new thread which focuses more closely on the ‘degrees of freedom’ of vibrating molecules question, to add to a thread to be intitiated by Stephen WIlde’s earlier comment.

Please help lick this into shape so we get the next discussion off on the right footing. Beginnings are important in setting the bounds of debate, and I want to get it right.

Cheers

TB

164. wayne says:

“There could be further discovery to be made in finding out how ‘degrees of freedom’ of molecular vibration are affected by differing pressure.”

Very true TB. That is why I’m leery of the consistency of the heat capacity part of the exponent, well, you can see it in Jupiter’s data above. If pressure affects the expression of more or less vibration modes, in extreme cases that appears true, then that would imply a warp in the lapse rate across all pressures up to the TOA. That may gain a more accurate way to more define the lapse curve just by knowing the dof/pressure variances and that can be obtained in existing data or in a lab. Good point there.

165. Stephen Wilde says:

“So the question becomes: what are the phsyical processes which really underpin the convection and latent heat transfer”

I think we have nailed it with the Gas Laws describing the changing distribution of KE and PE locally and regionally in three dimensions thereby adjusting the relative balance between the various non radiative processes so as to ensure radiative balance at top of atmosphere.

The thing about changing the relative proportions of KE and PE within a gravity field is that one immediately alters the density of any affected volume of air which leads to movement up and down.

Up and down movement on a rotating sphere immediately gives a circulation with horizontal movements too.

So there we have it.

Ever changing KE and PE proportions at different locations within the atmosphere.

Nothing whatever to do with radiation save that the total global amounts of KE and PE must stay the same as long as insolation stays the same (subject only to internal system variability).

It is all about mass moving about within a gravitational field and the old objections about conservation of energy and work needing to be done and closed loops when the atmosphere is open to space fall away as soon as one detaches a volume of rising air from the surface.

Once lift off occurs the parcel of air is in a fully closed loop until it touches down again so it is a genuinely adiabatic process and the action of rising is work being done but exactly offset by work being done in the opposite direction when it descends.

An atmosphere just moves energy around a bit thereby delaying exit to space leading to a higher surface temperature and no change in top of atmosphere balance because the initial energy for the ongoing loop was acquired aeons ago when the first molecules of air were able to float above a surface.

Pretty much as I said back in 2008 and as I thought was settled science some 50 years ago.

However I’ve never previously seen it described in relation to KE/PE, lapse rates and changing climate zones before.

Someone must have covered all that though, surely ?

166. Stephen Wilde says:

“There could be further discovery to be made in finding out how ‘degrees of freedom’ of molecular vibration are affected by differing pressure.”

Or by geometry.

As one goes higher away from a sphere the upward degrees of movement increase whilst the downward degrees of movement decrease. Pressure just happens to decrease at the same time.

Or rather, not so much upward and downward as

towards the sphere beneath

or away from the sphere towards space.

Obviously the higher one gets the smaller the sphere becomes within the field of view and that applies to the perspective from a moving molecule too.

‘Down’ becomes an increasingly smaller target.

167. tallbloke says:

Stephen: “The thing about changing the relative proportions of KE and PE within a gravity field is that one immediately alters the density of any affected volume of air which leads to movement up and down.”

This is where we run into the findings of br1 and Ferd Berple. Their models indicated that the molecules reaching higher altitudes had higher KE to start with, balancing out the gravitational effect. Now, I don’t think they’ve included everything which needs to be considered, but we need to deal with it, because their model is currently held up as the counter-proof by those who oppose the gravito-thermal hypothesis.

Trick was intimately involved in those discussions – maybe he can provide a synopsis for a new thread to specifically deal with that.

168. tallbloke says:

Stephen: “As one goes higher away from a sphere the upward degrees of movement increase whilst the downward degrees of movement decrease.”

Errr, I don’t think we’re talking about the same thing here. As I understand it, ‘degrees of freedom’ is referring to the modes of vibration of molecules, not their gross motion in space.

“‘Down’ becomes an increasingly smaller target.”

The difference is negligible within the troposphere.

169. Stephen Wilde says:

“‘degrees of freedom’ is referring to the modes of vibration of molecules, not their gross motion in space.”

Maybe I misunderstood but it is the vibrating that fires off photons isn’t it ?

I was considering the destination of those photons. The higher the molecule from which they emanate the less of a target the ground presents.

“The difference is negligible within the troposphere.”

I was thinking more in terms of the entire atmosphere such that more energy going out to space from higher up would draw energy up faster from below by increasing temperature differentials along the lapse rate which the Gas Laws would then have to correct by shuffling KE and PE around at lower levels.

“Their models indicated that the molecules reaching higher altitudes had higher KE to start with, balancing out the gravitational effect.”

Where would those more energetic molecules have started from ?

Note that redistributing KE and PE within an atmosphere would result in some molecules having more kinetic energy than others and the ones with more energy would go higher.

You could even have a cascade upward if the circulatory conditions were right.

Successive Gas Law induced adjustments at a specific location could produce many molecules with higher energies grouping together and rising higher than they could alone.

One wouldn’t necessarily need to start with a higher surface temperature because once a parcel of air detaches itself from the surface it enters a closed loop governed by the Gas Laws.

Can you refer me to a suitable basic description of their findings ?

170. wayne says:

“Obviously the higher one gets the smaller the sphere becomes within the field of view and that applies to the perspective from a moving molecule too.”

Good catch Stephen. Just above the tropopause it’s already like 52% up & 48% down and that grows a percentage about every 11km of altitude. For reference the up ratio is acos(r/(r+h))/pi+0.5, r earth’s radius, h height. Try it, see “dip of the horizon” for other relations. Take it from an old sailor, when you fix a position by the stars on Earth that correction is of prime importance and then you are only a few feet above sea level. Of course if you sail about on a flat world just ignore it like most climate/atmosphere equations. 😀 Just kidding kindof, like at the EEL most of the time a mere 4 w/m2 error is ignorable. Grown.

171. wayne says:

Stephen & TB

Careful on degrees of freedom (dof). You are both speaking of just vibrational but that is but one of many.

All matter, baseball, atoms, have three translational degrees of freedom, we live in a three dimensional universe. There will always be three no matter what. Diatomic molecules like N2, O2, CO2, SO2 are linear molecules so they get two rotational dof, now at five dof. But all of those have stretch and compression vibration modes along the central axis but they are inactive for they have no way to even get a temporary dipole moment due to symmetry. The CO2 (and any tri-atomic linear molecule) have two more lateral bend vibrational dof. In CO2 one of those is the apx. 4 µm line and in our cold atmosphere interacts very weakly with surface emissions. The other is the 15 µm line and that is where most vibration action occurs. But once again these are all linear molecule so they have no permanent dipole moments to allow them to absorb and emit unless they collide with another atom or molecule or aerosol or any matter. Then all can gain a temporary dipole moment and it’s a one time chance at that moment to have waves present of the correct frequency then they do absorb. There are more particulars and maybe both of you need to brush up a bit. After reading some 20-30 sites, usually astronomy or universities, you get a real understanding of all of this complexity involved. I could make a mistake so check me.

So O2, N2 and CO2 absorb and emit in the weak rotational long infrared frequencies, they do, the entire atmosphere does this at all times. In addition CO2 has the apx 4 µm line that can absorb very strongly near infrared from the solar incoming radiation and it can do this about 600+ times per second per the Einstein A coefficient of that line. Also CO2 can absorb in the 15 µm line a little from solar incoming but mainly from infrared from the surface or other CO2 molecules in the atmosphere itself and it can only do that at a rate between 1 and 2 per second, once again by the Einstein A coefficient at that wavelength or wavenumber.

H2O is not linear so it has many more dof, one more rotational (max. three for 3D) and can’t remember the number of vibration dof, for being not linear, this one does have a permanent dipole moment and can always absorb if not already excited at that energy level and spontaneously emits. Don’t have its Einstein A coefficients for water vapor’s lines. If you ever come across them grab that table. Those are hard to find.

Does that help any? That is from what I have recently learned on these very picky and rarely mentioned details.

172. tallbloke says:

Wayne: thanks, and apols to Stephen, clearly the gross motion in space is part of the dof description. My mistake.

So, can we model all this to produce something more complete than br1/Ferd’s model?

173. Stephen Wilde says:

Thanks wayne.

Very enlightening as to the complexity that ‘lies beneath’.

So, coming back to the more general issue, does all that detail allow you to express an opinion as to whether simple geometry would help energy escape an atmosphere faster as an inevitable consequence of atmospheric expansion around a sphere ?

The atmosphere expands and contracts all the, more at top than bottom. Is there any reason why expansion and contraction would NOT help to regulate the speed of energy throughput.

The Gas Laws suggest that it should by allowing volume to change in the first place and to me that seems enough in principle but so many won’t or can’t believe it that they insist on a higher surface temperature even when the speed of energy throughput increases.

We need a convincing bit of mathematics to show that composition changes which do have a thermal effect in an atmosphere (changing the actual lapse rates from level to level) result in volume changes which then allow transitions from KE to PE or back again to change the speed of energy throughput so that surface temperature and system energy content stay the same.

Logic, basic physics and observations tell me it must be so but that isn’t enough for many and the climate establishment impliedly deny it completely as a possibility.

Why do the basic Gas Laws not seem adequate for the purpose for others when it seems obvious to me ?

If it were not so then atmospheres could not be retained in the event of vast volcanic outbreaks and asteroid impacts . Early on in planetary histories such events were far more cataclysmic than today yet the atmospheres held on and evolved with the planets.

174. Trick says:

Stephen 2:22 pm: “Why do the basic Gas Laws not seem adequate for the purpose for others when it seems obvious to me ?”

Lots of stuff seems obvious to Stephen; unfortunately Trick has to do the pack mule math.

In the form PV=nRT, the Gas Laws suffer in an atm. from an ill defined volume. Where the atm. ends is so arbitrary, so too the volume, as to be of little use in this form. A better form is P=density*R*T like they used for Venus atm. study. Does that form help Stephen?

I do not get what Stephen means by “change the speed of energy throughput” so I am of little help.

Stephen continues: “…atmospheres could not be retained in the event of vast volcanic outbreaks.”

Sure they could. Fair warning: workhorse math ahead. Possibly I can add to Stephen’s KE+PE=const. thinking by surfing thru a molecule’s escape velocity. Think of a molecule m with PE so high in the atm. at r from earth (Me, Re) center that it is unlikelier to interact with other molecules b/c of the greatly reduced number density of molecules.

KE + PE = const. Simply its PE = – m*G*Me/r. KE = ½ m*v^2.
½*m*v^2 – m*G*Me/r = const.

Manipulate that (OT here, look it up, I suggest Bohren text) and find escape velocity = (2*g*Re)^0.5

For Re = 6400km, g = 9.8m/sec^2: escape velocity = 11,200 m/s give or take.

Consider the molecule is nitrogen. Look up most probable velocity N2 = 24.3*T^0.5 m/s.

Ok, pick a T. I pick 273K. Not too hot or cold. Goldilocks. Most probable N2 velocity = 401 m/s at 0C. Now need X, the fraction of N2 molecules with speeds greater than 11,200 m/sec.

The solution integrals for X are OT here, and complex, they will make your eyes cross, several times, look them up like I did. Find X ~ 10^-335. Note the negative exponent. A pretty small number of N2 molecules going past the speed limit.

How about the total N2 molecules in earth atm.? Scale height 8km, surface number density 10^25 m^-3, Re=6400km, find N2 total molecules ~ 4*10^43.

So we got 1 N2 out of every 10^335 has the requisite speed to escape earth atm. yet there are fewer than 10^44 N2 molecules of all speeds in the entire atm.

Do not lose sleep worrying about N2 (or O2) escaping from our atm. even in the event of Stephen’s vast volcanic outbreaks: Gravity provides an effective if not absolute seal.

175. Wayne,

You say: See, that it-is-all-in-the-radiation or radiation-can-solve-it-all mentality is what I am trying to get away from right now so most of the books using that approach are of little help. Yes all radiation leaves by radiation but that alone does not seem to deserve it stature.

Well said.

Although, actually, you are being too kind to the radiative transfer enthusiasts. There is not a shred of empirical evidence for radiative effects having any measurable influence on planetary atmospheric temperatures. Note what I said before: as soon as you put up an argument to a warmist that the ATE is just a good old fashioned thermal resistance effect, they either hurl unimportant diversionary comments at you; or they give you a (usually incomprehensible) lecture on the mathematics of radiative transfer theory. But what they never do is address your thermal theory, or your mathematical reasoning, or your empirical evidence.

Yet all the while this ridiculous technical debate is going on, the higher level picture is one where earth’s mean surface temperature has gone up at the utterly un-alarming rate of just 0.4degC per century as shown here using the official HadCRUT3 world temperature data:

The ~67 year up-and-down ripple in the long term temperature trend (enclosed between the red dotted lines in the above graph) explains all the alarmism of the last 33 years when the (entirely natural) temperature variability just happened to be in its upswing phase. Yes, a trough-to-peak rise of 0.5degC in 33 years might look alarming if you assume it is correlated with the big increase in man-made CO2 that occurred over that same period.  For some credulous people this spurious correlation appeared for a time to vindicate the radiative transfer theory. But now, as expected, the natural cycle is turning down again and is staying well within the red dotted “tunnel”, as many of us suspected it would.

Of course this won’t necessarily stop warmists spouting their “religious” radiative transfer equations as if they are In some sense far superior to empirical realities. But fortunately most people in the real world are not privy to such technical arguments. Slowly but surely, ordinary voters are influencing governments to turn away from the bandwagon they very foolishly jumped on. There is already clear evidence that politicians are at last beginning to turn slowly away from alarmist policies. Just today, for example, I read that the UK is going to permit fracking, a position unthinkable even a year ago. Also in the UK there is serious mounting opposition against wind farms (a highly cost-inefficient way of generating electricity – except for the other half-baked green solutions that are worse). And subsidies against solar have been slashed (what a joke that turned out to be for electricity generation in northern temperate latitudes, simply serving to subsidise rich people at the expense of the poor).

In the meanwhile, we should certainly push on in the Talkshop with the detailed technical analysis you have kicked off here, as should others including TB with his important ocean and planetary work, until we collectively have enough evidence to spike the warmist argument and help bring to an end to this utter nonsense.

176. Stephen Wilde says:

Trick.

If incoming solar energy exceeds outgoing longwave for long enough then heat will build up in an atmosphere enough for it to expand more and more until it is lost to space. It doesn’t even need to reach escape velocity because the solar wind will rip it away if it gets high enough and thin enough which it must do if energy keeps being added.

Gravity is not able to restrain molecules that can acquire an unlimited amount of kinetic energy.

All you are pointing out is that there has never been a volcanic event big enough or long enough to alter atmospheric composition so as to effect a long enough or big enough shift of the actual lapse rates away from the ideal lapse rate.

That supports my view.

If the atmosphere were sensitive to compositional changes in terms of a divergence from the ideal lapse rate (which AGW theory implies) then the atmosphere would have been lost.

AGW theory suggests that more CO2 begets more humidity which begets a higher temperature which must then beget more humidity and a higher temperature ad infinitum. That is nonsense. A Ponzi scheme.

It would require a significant and ever increasing shift away from the ideal lapse rate.

The atmosphere is not sensitive to composition changes in such a way and has not been for 4 billion years.and so there must be a suitable negative system response to any compositional changes.

There can be no positive feedbacks. Period.

I have told you how it works via the Gas Laws constantly rebalancing the KE/PE distribution in three dimensions.

“Gravity provides an effective if not absolute seal.”

OF COURSE IT DOES

Gravity interacts with matter to shift KE to PE and back again as necessary to return the actual lapse rates to the ideal lapse rate using the Gas Laws. Your ignoring of the relevance of volume and the speed of energy transmission is where you fail.

How else do you think gravity creates such a protective envelope ?

Think concepts, not numbers and now I’ve told you how it works you can go and produce numbers that reflect reality rather than the inadequate stuff that you just threw at me.

177. Trick says:

Stephen 4:00 pm: “If incoming solar energy exceeds outgoing longwave for long enough…”

It won’t, lapse is VERY stable. If surface Tavg. goes to 291K entirely from atm. composition changing from today’s 288K there is a new LT balance established w/EEL raised a bit, there is plenty T to go before N2 hits escape velocity – sleep easy.

N2 at T=291K most probable speed = 414 m/s << 11,200 m/s.

Stephen: “.. the Gas Laws constantly rebalancing the KE/PE distribution in three dimensions.”

The rebalanced KE/PE is spread around from heat balance changing a bit (solar v. OLR), P=density*R*T reacts. The gas laws don’t do the heavy lifting to rebalance OLR/Solar – radiation equil. does.

The numbers tell us radiation equil. is the bus driver, the sun is the prime mover; gas laws are important, they react:

KE+PE = const. for Tavg.=288K LTE
KE+PE= higher constant for Tavg. = 291K LTE.

KE+PE doesn’t know its higher constant until radiation equilibrium informs.

178. Stephen Wilde says:

As I said, if a radiation disequilibrium develops at top of atmosphere then either more goes out than comes in or more comes in than goes out.

Either way that consequence then feeds into a disequilibrium in the KE/PE balance in the atmosphere and the Gas Laws require a redistribution of KE and PE to restore the balance.

That is why the system is stable.

That is why past disruptions have not allowed the atmosphere to be lost.

The sun is the prime mover.

If composition prevents solar energy in from equalling longwave out the Gas Laws require a redistribution of KE relative to PE and the balance is restored.

Solar doesn’t change significantly so the only part that can change is OLR.

In order to change OLR it is necessary to change the net speed of the non radiative processes because it is those processes operating within the atmosphere that caused the initial time delay in the transmission of solar energy through the atmosphere in the first place.

The Gas Laws see to it.

The KE/PE transition and back again is a non radiative process and it is the timing of that which changes to rebalance all the other non radiative processes and restore balance between OLR and solar in.

Remember that PE is invisible to the radiative scenario. It is drawn on like a bank overdraft. The transition from KE to PE and back again varies in speed so as to ensure top of atmosphere balance between solar and OLR.

Faster if too little is going out.

Slower if too much is going out.

Please don’t regard yourself as a workhorse 🙂

It is just that my skills are conceptual and verbal and so I need the maths to be followed through by a specialist.

It is the only scenario that fits both observations and basic physics.

179. tallbloke says:

Hi trick: there are no empirical obs for EEL, so your assertion that radiative does the ‘the heavy lifting to rebalance TOA energy balance is, well, an assertion.

The only thing it balances is Stephens assertion that the general circulation is responsible.
😉

180. Stephen Wilde says:

A small thought experiment.

Suppose that composition changes do alter energy out without any negative feedback from the general circulation.

Suppose too that as per AGW theory there is a positive feedback.

Well then we have a permanent divergence from the ideal lapse rate.

What happens next ?

Even if temperatures rise or fall the divergence from the ideal lapse rate continues, forever or until there is no atmosphere or the composition changes back again.

How could equilibrium be regained at a higher or lower temperature if the composition is still causing the actual lapse rate to diverge from the ideal lapse rate ?

Or as AGW theory proposes the divergence actually increases with time ?

What would it take to stop it ?

Unless someone has a clear and specific answer the mere existence of atmospheres around planets is empirical evidence in favour of my proposition.

As is the similarity of temperature of Venus and Earth at the same atmospheric pressure adjusted only for distance from sun.

As is the empirical observation that Earth’s climate zones really do shift latitudinally and/or change their relative sizes and intensities in response to warming or cooling trends. Is it really proposed that such changes have NO effect on the rate of transfer of energy from surface to space ?

So I’m not making a mere assertion here.

I’m putting forward the only scenario I am aware of that could plausibly fit the facts.

181. Trick says:

tallbloke 7:18 pm – Ok. The EEL is not ever observed but calculated by science. How would I change my assertion that it changes altitude into science? Take soundings at say 5km and make sure T=255K as measured by satellite is observed. Then keep a record each month as Tavg. changes, see how the 5km for T=255K changes as predicted? Yeah!

I think the expense does not justify the means though. Going to have to stay an educated assertion that the 5km EEL ht. changes a bit by science calculation. EEL did rise way off the surface when BenAW & Stephen agreed to go from congealed 0K to Tavg=288K w/atm. So it follows EEL altitude science change is more than just an assertion when Tavg. changes. You think?

182. tallbloke says:

Trick: ‘science calculation’ that ignores non-radiative processes is unphysical.

183. Trick says:

tallbloke 7:47 pm: I’m not following this, little help pls.

Stephen 7:13 pm: “…the Gas Laws require a redistribution of KE and PE to restore the balance.”

The gas laws do NOT require this, the 1st law does. The 1st law is the radiation balance. The gas laws react to their new constant & divvy up from 0 to infinity (and beyond).

Stephen continues: “…the net speed of the non radiative processes…”

What is this? In m/s please. Oops, not a numbers guy. I’ll never know? Ok, I can live a good life w/o it.

Stephen continues: “Remember that PE is invisible to the radiative scenario.”

NO. PE is not invisible to radiative scenario, KE+PE=constant. Not invisible. Get To, get PE.

Stability comes from the heat balance, the lapse rate follows once it knows the surface To and at deep space* the KE+PE=const. also follows. If you don’t know To, you have to send Venera, Mariner, and Magellan to Venus for it. Why? You know P=density*R*T but you don’t know the heat balance. ALL else follows from the heat balance establishing To, the potential temperature then gives constant for KE+PE=const.

The Soviets had at least a good guess that Venus To might range up to 730K when they assembled the Veneras with: “..thermometers had ranges of 210-730° K (36.8 Ω) and 270-600° K (16 Ω). This design provided a more accurate reading over the expected range…” I’d like to know the provenance of their guess, anyone?

Once Magellan had the Venus atm. density down to 35km nailed pretty good (Venus GHE included), projecting to h=o as TC did works pretty well, science had to know physics and nature’s lapse had to know To first though.

*Pls, again, no high alt. physics, this about surface & PV=nRT.

184. Trick says:

Oops, tallbloke 7:54 pm, ha.

185. Stephen Wilde says:

The Effective Emission Level is an interesting issue.

AGW proponents usually say that when the EEL rises then outward radiation occurs from a colder location and so the lower temperature at the EEL means LESS energy escaping to space which causes energy out to fall below energy in resulting in system warming.

Then they add the supposed positive feedback of more humidity and off we go again on an unstoppable thermal Ponzi scheme.

So, what if the EEL is higher up but the same temperature as before because the entire thermal profile of the atmosphere has shifted upward.

That gives MORE energy escaping to space doesn’t it ?

So if composition changes try to slow down energy loss the consequent expansion of the atmosphere speeds it up again.

So which is right ?

We certainly see the upper atmosphere expand and radiate out faster when the sun is more active.

186. Stephen Wilde says:

“NO. PE is not invisible to radiative scenario, KE+PE=constant. Not invisible. Get To, get PE.”

It is invisible to the process of radiative exchange during the length of time it is engaged in the transition from KE to PE and back again.

Can PE radiate out or in ?

KE can.

“The gas laws do NOT require this, the 1st law does. The 1st law is the radiation balance. The gas laws react to their new constant & divvy up from 0 to infinity (and beyond).”

If the radiation balance is not zero the Gas Laws react to the imbalance and divvy up to remove it. Just as I said.

“Stephen continues: “…the net speed of the non radiative processes…”
What is this? In m/s please. ”

No one else knows so I surely cannot but I think it is pretty widely accepted that they are variable between themselves as climate and weather changes with the global air and ocean circulations.

Do you think they are all set at a constant speed like radiation ?

“Stability comes from the heat balance, the lapse rate follows once it knows the surface To ”

What do you mean by ‘heat balance’ ?

How does the lapse rate ‘know’ the surface To ?

Stability comes from maintaining top of atmosphere radiative exchange. The Gas Laws ensure it as you say. They ‘divvy up’ whatever is needed in the way I have described.

187. tallbloke says:

Best guess TOA balance hasn’t changed much. Hot Spot failed to appear. Obs are against diative theory. Agree with Stephen, higher EEL already pre-warmed by sun.

188. Trick says:

Stephen 7:36 pm: “A small thought experiment….Unless someone has a clear and specific answer.”

Ok, clear specific answer coming up. The textbook simple heat balance ought to be enough so let’s give it a test drive. All data taken from this thread. Starting today in equilibrium:
1370 * 0.7 – 4*sigma*(1-0.8/2) * Tsurface avg. ^4 = 0 solve for Teq. atm. near surface Teq.=289K

Stephen experiments: “Suppose that composition changes do alter energy out without any negative feedback from the general circulation.”

Ok, the measured atm. emissivities in dry arctic winter 0.7 and humid tropics 0.95 go up a bit due to atm. composition change, bringing new global e=0.82. Wait for LTE & find:
1370 * 0.7 – 4*sigma*(1-0.82/2) * Tsurface avg. ^4 = 0 solve for Teq. atm. near surface Teq.=291K

Stephen experiments some more: “Suppose too that as per AGW theory there is a positive feedback.”

Ok, the new Tavg. melts some arctic ice and puts 1 more cloud in the sky, albedo goes to 0.29, wait for LTE:
1370 * 0.29 – 4*sigma*(1-0.82000001/2) * Tsurface avg. ^4 = 0 solve for Teq. atm. near surface Teq.=292K

Stephen observes: “Well then we have a permanent divergence from the ideal lapse rate.” Yeah, Tavg. now permanently stable 292K so ideal lapse starts at To=292K, a permanently different ideal T/To or the approx. lapse moves a little due the new Cp: -g/Cp permanently. PE+KE=new higher constant.

Stephen asks: “What happens next ?” Nothing; if no more changes, earth is in balance, forever.

Stephen obfuscates from nowhere (not being a numbers man this is easy): “ Even if temperatures rise or fall the divergence from the ideal lapse rate continues, forever or until there is no atmosphere or the composition changes back again.”

No, nothing of the sort happens. Sure, get a new balanced lapse rate different from old just a little bit. The new N2 most probable speed = 415 m/s << 11,200 m/s, the atm. sits right where it is. Happily raining, snowing, Tmax., Tmin. every day. All with the new composition.

Stephen asks: “How could equilibrium be regained at a higher or lower temperature if the composition is still causing the actual lapse rate to diverge from the ideal lapse rate ?”

Equilibrium IS regained at Tavg. 292K at the new atm. composition, I just showed that, clear & specific.

Stephen continues with a leap of faith: “Or as AGW theory proposes the divergence actually increases with time ?”

I just showed that divergence increase doesn’t happen with time, clear and specific.

Stephen concludes: “I’m putting forward the only scenario I am aware of that could plausibly fit the facts.”

I know it is the only scenario Stephen knows of, Stephen is not a numbers man. It really does take numbers to see what happens clear & specific.

189. Trick says:

Stephen 8:40 pm: “Can PE radiate out or in ? KE can.”

If KE can radiate out then PE reduces. PE is not invisible to radiative process. KE+PE=constant.

Some poetic license here for the Planck technocrats wanting integration over the spectrum which is holstered here. Energy is conserved, temperatures are not. Mass adds, temperatures do not. In a fast violent gunfight, holsters are sort of going unused.

190. Trick says:

Trick 9:12pm: 1370 * 0.29 !

Nuts, 1370 * 0.71. Answer 292K unaffected b/c I did the math right, just a typo. Happens.

191. wayne says:

“So, can we model all this to produce something more complete than br1/Ferd’s model?”

Here are some very rough and half-thought-out ideas on that question.

One thing, we need to bring together all of the equations that let you model any hypothetical planet and its atmosphere completely from base variables. Start with the sun’s temperature then planet’s mass, size, albedo, surface emissivity and the TSI. Then the atmospheres mass, species, each species dof and molecular mass. Need the equations used in all standard atmospheres code or equivalent to compute the geopotential heights from the geometric heights, pressures at any height, and density from pressure and temperature. And of course, you need that new equation.

From those it may be possible to model any planet and its atmosphere’s troposphere close to the first principles (linear). The hardest part of this and still questionable to me seems to being able to determine one single accurate pressure/temperature value at some height, and really at any height would do.

Maybe I cut Trick short and this is what he was meaning on his EEL equation. It has no idea of height but it does give you a surface temperature with a guess at the atmosphere’s effective emissivity. Guess at EEL’s height and emissivity, get a trial temperature at the surface and guessed lapse rate, you already know the mean surface pressure. Calculate the pressures and temperatures upward by the gas components mean dof as that new equation implies. Now the lapse should no longer match match. Iterate using the better EEL height and back-solved a better atmospheres effective emissivity until it converges to some ε hopefully, if not, redesign the model :sad:. Seems feasible. Have I left something out or have I used a relation that does not exist or lack info at that moment? I am sure this is incomplete. Is this too big of a first step?

I’m used to code and iterations but if equations can by-pass this iteration, great, that’s better.

That sure would be a big step forward it seems if then Earth, Venus, and Jupiter could be closely matched from just the parameters above and never having a probe, radiosonde or pre-averaged standard atmosphere for the start pressure/temperature point. Then, I guess, would follow the math, of which I am not very savvy, to see if that converging sequence can be formed into a closed-form set of equations. Don’t know there.

As usual the albedo and surface emissivity are the king pins that you can never get around. If you don’t know one accurately you will equally never know the atmosphere and temperatures accurately.

192. Trick says:

tallbloke 8:40pm: The EEL is calculated from these assumptions: (i) the atmosphere has a constant scale height, so that density varies as ρ = ρse−z/H; (ii) the absorbers are well mixed, so that the specific density q = ρa/ρ is uniform; (iii) pressure broadening does not play a big role.

This is not ignoring non-radiative processes as unphysical. Which assumption are you objecting? I’m aware the hot spot issue, is that related to EEL? How?

What observations are against radiative theory? – if that’s what you mean. Again, this theory is big picture and use it with caution, can only go so far. Not for the small variations around the mean, for sure. It won’t tell you the weather today or tomorrow, lol.

193. Stephen Wilde says:

Trick.

The ideal lapse rate stays exactly the same because the strength of the gravitational field has not changed.

You are using numbers that assume a single actual lapse rate from surface to space. That requires a uniform composition from surface to space and if that could happen then at equilibrium the actual lapse rate and ideal lapse rate would be identical.

In practice every planet has changing composition at different levels and the actual lapse rates go this way and that but overall net out to the ideal lapse rate.

Now run your figures with multiple layers each of which can rise or fall, expand or contract independently.

Just change the actual lapse rate in one layer only.

If that change in one layer only is not compensated for elsewhere then the divergence from the ideal lapse rate will be permanent with a permanent net cooling or permanent net heating.

So the actual lapse rate would be diverging from the ideal lapse rate and top of atmosphere balance will NOT be regained.

PE + KE does not reach a new constant because the speed of the non radiative processes changes to keep it the same as the constant set by gravity and mass.

We know that composition changes actual lapse rates. Where is your evidence that composition changes the ideal lapse rate ?

If it could do so then the very different atmosphere of Venus would NOT show the same temperature as Earth at the same pressure adjusted only for distance from the sun.

“If KE can radiate out then PE reduces”

No it does not because there is a closed loop. KE to PE and PE to KE which takes TIME. The amount of time is set by mass and gravity.

Composition cannot affect it because of the lapse rate and Gas Laws as explained above.

KE radiates out from the ground (mostly) when air descends but the PE lost is continuously replaced when air rises elsewhere and that reduces the top of atmosphere figure which is then replaced by the new KE from the surface so top of atmosphere stays the same but surface warms.

That is what atmospheres do.

None of my efforts have made the slightest impression.

194. Trick says:

As in Godot Act 2 , “In the meantime let us try and converse calmly, since we are incapable of keeping silent.”

Stephen 10:09 pm: “The ideal lapse rate stays exactly the same because the strength of the gravitational field has not changed.”

The approx. lapse rate (from adiabatic T=constant) is –g/Cp which changes due to Cp changing as the composition changed, can’t assume Cp no change.

The ideal lapse rate T(p)/To = (P(z)/Po)^R/Cp changes b/c To changed as well as P(z) & Cp.

The environmental lapse rate changes per wayne’s thumb rule env. lapse = 2/3 lapse ideal. That is so far above, I may not have that exact but something like that.

Stephen continues: “That requires a uniform composition from surface to space and if that could happen then at equilibrium the actual lapse rate and ideal lapse rate would be identical.”

No way. Stephen, the actual lapse rate which I think you mean environmental lapse rate, is different from ideal because the real atm. is not at max. entropy, has energy flowing thru it, and has aerosols and a host of other dirty stuff. Making an actual uniform composition will just not make it ideal. Geez. Read Verkley paper posted above.

Stephen: “So the actual lapse rate would be diverging from the ideal lapse rate and top of atmosphere balance will NOT be regained. PE + KE does not reach a new constant because the speed of the non radiative processes changes to keep it the same as the constant set by gravity and mass.”

That happens today no problem, if get new Tavg. = 292K get a new TOA balance like today no need to regain the Tavg.=288K balance. PE+KE reaches new higher constant, how did you miss this above?

PE+KE=constant
At surface, PE=0, KE from Tavg. = 292K. 0 + 292 = constant = 292.
PE+KE = 292K at TOA KE=0 so TOA PE=292K the potential temperature an air parcel would have if brought to surface.

“We know that composition changes actual lapse rates. Where is your evidence that composition changes the ideal lapse rate ?”

Yes. I just wrote that evidence, see above in this post. Learn it, check reliable ref.s. Ever read the book “Who stole my cheese?” This book may apply to Stephen’s situation.

“If it could do so then the very different atmosphere of Venus would NOT show the same temperature as Earth at the same pressure adjusted only for distance from the sun.”

Sure it would, you keep saying P=density*R*T is important. At same P as earth, with atm. density properly adjusted for distance from sun, we DO get the same T as earth. Verrry close anyway, maybe a little .001 different due to weather on one of the planets. No surprises, the Russians knew this in the EARLY 1960s, I just pointed that out above. It is not NEW in any way.

“KE to PE and PE to KE which takes TIME. The amount of time is set by mass and gravity.”

Yeah transient thermo is hard, but in the end LTE settles in with PE NOT invisible to radiative equilibrium. Not at all.

“None of my efforts have made the slightest impression.”

The impression I get is that w/o numbers any poster is suspect until the numbers are worked out consistent with the physics of the 1st, 2nd, gas laws et. al. Laws that regulary repeat at Venus & Earth & everywhere we look in the universe. Ceptin’ maybe inside a black hole. Can’t look there.

195. Stephen Wilde says:

A couple of small corrections:

A change in composition that affects total mass will change the total amount of PE and KE tied up in the surface to space loop.

Our CO2 relative to total atmospheric mass is insignificant.

A change in solar input would also increase the total amount of KE and PE tied up in that loop by raising the height of the whole atmosphere.

196. tallbloke says:

Trick: “This is not ignoring non-radiative processes as unphysical. Which assumption are you objecting? I’m aware the hot spot issue, is that related to EEL? How?… What observations are against radiative theory? ”

For the warming of the surface to have been caused by a radiative effect up in the sky, an area of the sky would have to increase in temperature by several times more than the increase on the surface. That was the radiative theory prediction. It didn’t happen. The surface got warmer, but without a hot spot appearing.

Therefore it wasn’t a long wave radiative effect which caused the warming.

What actually caused the warming was extra short wave from the Sun heating the ocean when the cloud cover diminished.

This is what the empirical data says. I am at a loss to explain why so many people keep ignoring it. Perhaps the people who choose to ignore it should explain why they ignore it.

I suspect we’d have to tie them down and threaten to pull their toenails out with pincers before they would though.

197. Stephen Wilde says:

“Making an actual uniform composition will just not make it ideal”

It isn’t the uniformity that makes it ideal it is the Gas Laws working on the non radiative energy flows to make it ideal.

But if it has a uniform composition from top to bottom there will be no kinks in it on the way up and so it would be very easy for it to match the ideal lapse rate.

You haven’t answered the critical point.

If the actual lapse rate is altered by a change of composition in one level then it must be offset by an opposite change elsewhere otherwise there will be a permanent divergence from the ideal lapse rate.

I think the flaw in your numbers is the absence of any term for the speeding up or slowing down of the transition time from KE to PE and back again.

We know that the speed of the hydrological cycle and other non radiative processes change constantly so there is the variable we need to insert so as to prevent the outcomes that your numbers provide.

I have always specified that the cause of the warmer surface is the time delay induced by mass and gravity in transmitting incoming solar energy through the system.

I believe that is settled science.

Non radiative processes clearly have the power to vary that speed of transmission and until your figures include that component they are worthless.

I’m always suspicious when numbers are used to obfuscate basic concepts.

Governments and Bankers are very good at that.

198. Trick says:

Stephen 11:17 pm: “You haven’t answered the critical point. If the actual lapse rate is altered by a change of composition in one level then it must be offset by an opposite change elsewhere otherwise there will be a permanent divergence from the ideal lapse rate.”

I answered clear and specific. Now you are talking about a change of composition in one level? This doesn’t follow the earlier thought experiment. Please be clear and specific.

Stephen continues: “I have always specified that the cause of the warmer surface is the time delay induced by mass and gravity in transmitting incoming solar energy through the system. I believe that is settled science.”

Any time delay implies transient thermo. Thermo law says precious little about time to LTE. I went back and read Gibbs orig. papers (~1890s on this stuff) and was struck by his dedication to relentlessly begin every one of them by writing something like let the thermo system settle to equilibrium. The heat balance only stabilizes at LTE. Yes, mass introduces a time delay Cp etc. when presented with a flux jump. Gotta’ wait for LTE. I would start every post with that if I had Gibbs patience.

“Non radiative processes clearly have the power to vary that speed of transmission…”

Yes however…..

Let the thermo system settle to equilibrium: evidenced by Tavg. reaches 292K.

Accountants know the ways of gov. & bankers so bankers get 2 weeks forced vacation every year. Why? To let the banking system they control settle to equilibrium; the balance sheet is appropriately named.

199. Trick says:

tallbloke 11:00 pm: “For the warming of the surface to have been caused by a radiative effect up in the sky, an area of the sky would have to increase in temperature by several times more than the increase on the surface. That was the radiative theory prediction. It didn’t happen. The surface got warmer, but without a hot spot appearing.”

Ok, thanks. I will check into that. For the heat balance I used, there would be a surface change of 3K and a lower & lower amount of T increase (by the lapse) all the way to TOA T~0 where potential temperature increases up the same 3K. Don’t need a “several times” increase in T with this. So there is something else involved. Back at ya’ later.

Oh yeah, the ocean. My project to include that in the heat balance has fallen on hard times. It is set as 1.0 as you can see in the eqn. the “1” in the (1-e/2) term.

Now if you move off 1.0 say to 0.983, two additional fluxes spring up (they were 0 before and are non-zero now) & have to be properly accounted for – they are not complex or anything of the sort but I could not easily assemble an equation doing that as yet. Still, it is interesting to try.

Complicating that of all things, when my library card neared expiry 11/30, I went to renew my best ref. on it 11/29 for 3 weeks, the system only allowed 1 day. Thinking I might be trying to pull a fast one on them, ha. So I gotta’ reorder it. Stuff happens.

200. Stephen Wilde says:

“Let the thermo system settle to equilibrium: evidenced by Tavg. reaches 292K.”

If there is faster energy throughput the system temperature or energy content doesn’t need to change.

You might get warming in one place and cooling in another though and any warming need not be at the surface.

Remember that I talked about redistribution of KE and PE in three dimensions ?

You’ve known all along that the issue was speed of throughput but you keep ignoring it.

Regard me as your Accountant. Perhaps take a vacation 🙂

Ever heard of cash flow ?

201. Trick says:

tallbloke 11:00pm – A couple minutes on the google channel, shows it is computer climate models that predict the hot spot and it is not closely matched in nature. So much for computer models, but this has little to nothing to do with the basic radiation equilibrium eqn. s from which we can still learn a lot. Before progressing to even more complex issues, problems, mistakes, ha.

202. Trick says:

Stephen: “You’ve known all along that the issue was speed of throughput but you keep ignoring it.”

Let the thermo system settle to equilibrium: evidenced by Tavg. reaches 292K.

1370 * 0.71 – 4*sigma*(1-0.82000001/2) * Tsurface avg. ^4 = 0 solve for Teq. atm. near surface Teq.=292K

Speed of throughput not a factor at LTE.

Stephen continues: “Remember that I talked about redistribution of KE and PE in three dimensions ?”

Let the thermo system settle to equilibrium: evidenced by Tavg. reaches 292K.

From 3D KE+PE = const. = 289K KE has T=289K at surface, PE= 289K at TOA.

Observe their redistribution while you….Let the thermo system settle to equilibrium after the change in atm. composition:

To 3D KE+PE = const. = 292K KE has T=292K, PE=0 at surface, KE=0, PE= 292K at TOA.

For your next post, you will again let the thermo system settle to equilibrium. For my next post, I will again let the thermo system settle to equilibrium.

Cash flow is wayyyy better than net income. Follow the cash, follow the heat, let equity & PV=nRT balance out on the balance sheet.

203. tallbloke says:

Trick: ” …the basic radiation equilibrium eqn. s from which we can still learn a lot. Before progressing to even more complex issues, problems, mistakes…”

My opinion is that the “basic radiation equilibrium eqn. s” can act as a checksum (if you plug in the right value for EEL), but have little to do with the causation of the surface T, because the net flux is upwards. The flux resulting from the real cause is therefore mostly an effect in the lower troposphere. Here’s the low-down as I see it:

Gravity acting on
atmospheric mass increases pressure nearer the surface, and therefore
air density, and, importantly, heat capacity. Static thinkers miss
the point – the throughput of solar energy necessarily leaves more
energy in this denser, higher heat capacity medium as it flows in
as short-wave and out as sensible heat, latent heat and long wave
active gases, water vapour and (tiny amounts of) CO2. Their primary role
is to lose energy back to space from high up in the troposphere. These
two processes plus general circulation driven by differentials are what
creates the vertical temperature profile and thus the enviromental lapse rate.

The primary role of the so-called ‘greenhouse gases’ is actually to
cool the planet, not warm it! Radiation is the only way energy can get
back to space!

Back radiation can’t elevate the temperature of the Earth’s surface
because downwelling energy is overcome on average by upwelling energy,
the net flux is upwards. The denser, warmer, higher heat capacity air
near the surface prevents the ocean from losing heat quickly enough to
achieve equilibrium until it has risen in temperature high enough to
overcome the limitation on the rate of evaporation set by the air
pressure and temperature. The ocean itself supports that temperature
(especially at night) as it releases the solar energy it absorbs to a
depth of 100m during the day.

Without ocean and atmosphere the Earth’s average temperature would be
the same as the Moon’s, which was recently empirically determined by
the Diviner experiment on the Lunar Orbiter – ~197K. This is far below
the ~255K the radiative theorists falsely arrived at through their
mis-application of the Stefan Boltzmann equation to a flat Earth under
a weakened, averaged out Sun. The difference between ~197K
and the actual surface temperature of ~288K is waaay bigger than
anything ‘back radiation’ could achieve, and is down to the circulation
and heat capacity of the oceans, the surface air pressure induced by
gravity acting on the atmospheric mass increasing the density and heat
capacity of the near surface air, and the limitation that places on the
evaporation rate of the ocean.

We are moving out of the twilight of obscured knowledge into the clear
light of day.

204. tallbloke says:

Useful reference – but no gravity consideration.
http://hyperphysics.phy-astr.gsu.edu/hbase/kinetic/ktcon.html

205. Stephen Wilde says:

Jeez.

The thermo system doesn’t need to settle to equilibrium if a change in the flow of throughput prevents it from going out of equilibrium in the first place.

206. Stephen Wilde says:

tallbloke.

A fair summary but I warn you that on my experience there are many who just will never get it in their lifetimes even if one were to remove their toenails with pincers.

There is just so much emotional commitment to the ’cause’ that logic and facts simply don’t work.

Luckily the general public is drifting towards the truith and some politicians too.

207. tallbloke says:

I’m certain “emotional commitment to the cause” doesn’t apply to Trick, so lets keep it rational in this forum of calm and politeness.

I think the key point is that the radiative flux moves from being cause to effect of vertical temperature profile as altitude decreases. If I can get Trick to see that, we have made a big stride in understanding.

208. Stephen Wilde says:

Ok, sorry. Frustration took over for a moment.

Wasn’t meaning Trick personally though I suppose it did look that way.

209. Stephen Wilde says:

“the radiative flux moves from being cause to effect of vertical temperature profile as altitude decreases. ”

Yes, the radiative flux is that which is left over after the non radiative processes have run their course and additionally the non radiative processes can change the rate of energy throughput whereas radiation cannot.

Thus for an atmosphere to be retained the system must always adjust to reconcile radiation in and out with the ever changing speeds of the non radiative processes.

Nothing in Trick’s numbers deals with the variability in throughput speed that must result from the constantly shifting interplay between radiative and non radiative processes.

He just treats both types of energy transfer exactly the same with no variability in speed for either.

210. tallbloke says:

I understand and sympathise with your frustration Stephen. Outside our cocoon of calmness, irrational behaviour and ingrained patterns of thought hold sway.

This is why we must quantify empirical findings and derive meaningful equations to back up our descriptive effort.

Trick is actually encouraging us to do that by holding up the radiative model as an example of a successful and internally numerically consistent (if physically untenable) model.

I agree with your objections to it. So now we need to replace it with something less deficient.

Some folks don’t like the N&Z model because of the unexplained constants. Wayne has been striving to find a physically meaningful relationship to help account for the gravito-thermal effect through an understanding of the effect of gravity on heat capacity.

We are getting closer.

Maybe we’ll need the virial theorem too. I think Miskolczi used it?
http://hyperphysics.phy-astr.gsu.edu/hbase/astro/gravc.html#c2

211. Stephen Wilde says:

I think the idea of two separate energy processing loops is a help.

One from top of atmosphere to space. The other from surface to top of atmophere.

Mass, gravity and insolation combine to create a fixed quantity of PE which is derived from and returned back to KE after a period of time.

If there were no mass or no gravity or no insolation them PE would be zero. That is why Trick cannot be permitted to change the PE/KE constant in his equations.

The length of time it takes for the KE/PE loop to complete a circuit between surface and top of atmosphere determines the amount of surface heating because it allows energy to accumulate at the surface.

Composition determines the speed at which the non radiative processes within the atmosphere can operate.

Changes in the speed of non radiative processes occur when one changes atmospheric composition so that changes the length of time for a single circuit BUT the thermal effect of the change in the length of time of the circuit has an equal and opposite effect to the thermal effect of the change in composition.

The numbers I set out previously give a simple physically tenable and internally numerically consistent model.

Simply put:

Solar in 255, longwave out 255

An extra 33 (or whatever it really is) circulating between surface and top of atmosphere to provide the required energy boost at the surface without altering top of atmosphere balance.

The necessary variable is speed of throughput which is handled by the non radiative processes.

If outgoing drops below 255 due to composition reducing the speed of flow the non radiative processes speed up to deliver enough to top of atmosphere to remove the radiative imbalance that would otherwise occur.

The 33 remains the same, it is just circulated faster

The reverse if outgoing rises above 255.

If we need more empirical evidence what do you think it should be ?

It fits real world observed numbers.

As far as I can see that scenario accommodates every reasonable sceptical position including those of Miskolczi, N& Z, Harry Huffman et al.

212. Trick says:

Stephen 9:14 am: “The thermo system doesn’t need to settle to equilibrium if a change in the flow of throughput prevents it from going out of equilibrium in the first place.”

The system in LTE was perturbed i.e. “kicked” out of LTE by your thought experiment change in atm. composition. It is SO stable, system settles back to LTE at higher Tavg.

Give me some kind of physical explanation for “flow of throughput” preventing the “kick” from putting it out of LTE at all, based on 1st principles not assertion pls. I promise to look into that.

tallbloke 8:15 am: “…the net flux is upwards.”

Think what this means. This would be night time cooling rate = –kDT/dt. Reverses during the day, right?

In LTE, the net flux is 0. Flux-in – flux-out = 0. Sun – OLR = 0. SW-LW=0 . See how/if that modifies what you posted, it may not. I’m out of time now.

The basic radiative balance shows what happens at night, day, the GHE, the atm. composition effects alone, the DWIR, the UWIR – can settle many debate points IMO. It can’t say much about system stability. Need control system theory for help on that.

It does NOT answer what politicians should do or even if we need to save ourselves from ourselves. Simply acknowledging a GHE exists is not in itself cause for alarm.

213. tallbloke says:

Trick:
tallbloke 8:15 am: “…the net flux is upwards.”

Think what this means. This would be night time cooling rate = –kDT/dt. Reverses during the day, right?

In LTE, the net flux is 0. Flux-in – flux-out = 0. Sun – OLR = 0. SW-LW=0 . See how/if that modifies what you posted, it may not. I’m out of time now.

Ah, pity, we are at cross purposes, I’m talking about the net average flux between DWIR and UWIR, not between incoming solar SW and outgoing LW. It means the surface is not, on average, heated by ‘back radiation’.

Oh well, next time then.

214. Stephen Wilde says:

“Give me some kind of physical explanation for “flow of throughput” preventing the “kick” from putting it out of LTE at all, based on 1st principles not assertion pls. I promise to look into that.”

I’ve done that several times already but you just ignore it.

You seem to deny that the speed of non radiative processes can vary.

There might be a time delay as the effect works through but in due course there must be a return to the initial equilibrium (not a higher one) but with a change in the circulation pattern. If the circulation pattern didn’t change then you would be right. In that case a higher equilibrium would be required.

But anyway, this is all chaff.

You agree, don’t you, that ALL atmospheric mass is involved ?

If it is then the AGW theory fails because the effect of our emissions on total atmospheric mass would be too small to measure even if there were NO equal and opposite reaction from the circulation system.

Anyway, it boils down to this:

i) Composition changes and slows down non radiative energy transmission within the atmosphere(I’m sure that GHGs can affect non radiative processes but not convinced as regards radiative processes)

ii) Circulation changes and speeds up non radiative energy transmission within the atmosphere.

iii) The circulation change is caused because the radiative imbalance at top of atmosphere which results from the effect of the composition change then unbalances the relative amounts of KE and PE within the atmosphere below which, as you know, must be equal.

iv) There is no production of extra PE because only mass, gravity or insolation can change it and for present purposes we are considering composition changes that do not alter mass significantly.

v) The circulation movements then rebalance KE and PE again which invoilves a change in the speed of the non radiative energy transfers.

vi) That change in circulation changes the speed of the non radiative energy transfers to what they were before so that top of atmosphere energy balance is regained with no need for an increase in atmosperic temperature. If there were an increase in atmospheric temperature (KE) without increasing total PE the KE and PE would not be equal and you know that is not possible.

vii) The system response is always equal and opposite to the effect of the composition change otherwise the atmosphere cannot be retained. If it were not equal and opposite then the imbalance at top of atmosphere would result in a permanent net loss or gain from top of atmosphere. That is why KE cannot be more (or less) than PE.

Your figures are based on the proposition that total PE can change as a result of a composition change alone. If you keep PE constant then the other numbers would fall into place and you wouldn’t need a change in equilibrium temperature but you would have to change volume instead and that change of volume together with the circulation changes that would accompany it is what adjusts the speed of the non radiative processes so that temperature need not rise.

An increased volume slows down the non radiative processes at a given temperature and a reduced volume speeds them up because less space is available to achieve balance at top of atmosphere so a smaller volume must run faster at any given temperature.

It is like a wide river as against a narrow river.

If you widen the river the same volume is flowing through (because it is still coming from upstream at the same rate) but it flows more slowly. If you narrow the river the same volume flows through but it flows more quickly.

Composition changes in the atmosphere are like widening or narrowing a river and the ‘water’ is the energy tied up in non radiative processes.

215. Stephen Wilde says:

The thing is that a planet has to acquire the capacity to form potential energy BEFORE it can retain kinetic energy.

Only mass, gravity and insolation in combination will give the capacity to form PE.

Since PE=KE the amount of KE that a planet can hold on to is limited by its capacity to develop PE.

So if more KE develops than the amount of PE available to match it then the excess radiates straight out again instantly hence no rise in system temperature.

GHGs do not increase PE.

They do acquire KE and so all they do is redistribute the available KE within an atmosphere.

That results in circulatory changes that cancel out their redistributive effect leaving top of atmosphere radiation out undisturbed.

The big mistake of AGW theory is thinking that composition changes allow the stock of available PE to increase without an accompanying increase in mass.

And not realising that when a change in composition does result in more KE in various places the circulation will change to cancel that effect so as to not allow interference with top of atmosphere balance.

It’s all about the KE/PE exchange which is a mechanical non radiative process entirely absent from the AGW radiative scenario.

216. Trick says:

tallbloke 1:22 pm – I’ll still have coffee break time but have a full schedule this week; limits me to big picture points.

Starting today in equilibrium:
1370 * 0.7 – 4*sigma*(1-0.8/2) * Tsurface avg. ^4 = 0 solve for Teq. atm. near surface Teq.=289K

The DWIR is the -0.8/2 term in this balance. I agree: ” It means the surface is not, on average, heated by ‘back radiation’.” The term simply reduces the UWIR.

The UWIR is the whole second term. UWIR becomes net of the DWIR; the UWIR then becomes exactly equal to incoming solar term IR at LTE. I urge you to do the simple math in excel step by step and see for yourself the magnitude of surface DWIR. It will fall right into the measured surface levels. Play with albedo, emissivity, try putting in .983 surface for the 1.0 (ignore the new fluxes that arise). It is cathartic.

Stephen 1:33 pm: Overwhelming me at the moment.

I am not ignoring your “speed of non radiative processes” at all, I just don’t get how they have any effect at all on LTE in the eqn. above; fill me in what term is affected, then I can respond. Sure, if you “kick” the system, internal fluxes will go nuts for awhile. The system external balance shows stability by inspection since the experiment is in progress daily – meaning control theory would show the system damps out internal “throughput” and returns to external flux LTE at higher surface temp.

Also, “..no production of extra PE because only mass, gravity or insolation can change (PE)…your figures… PE can change as a result of a composition change alone.””

PE can change due to something other than mass, gravity or insolation. I just showed PE can change due to atm. composition. The potential temperature a parcel of air will achieve at surface if brought from near TOA where KE~0 to surface where PE=0 can change based on atm. composition. I just showed how above. Composition changes PE (really potential temp.) from 289K to =292K at KE~0 near TOA point.

217. Stephen Wilde says:

“PE can change due to something other than mass, gravity or insolation. I just showed PE can change due to atm. composition”

You merely assumed it and incorporated that assumption into your figures.

The effect from composition that you describe is a non radiative process whereby the molecules in the air parcel acquire a larger share of the available KE.

For the system as a whole there is no increase in PE.

Temperature is a measure of KE alone.

You cannot conflate PE with temperature by just putting the word ‘potential’ before ‘temperature’.

Only KE affects temperature and the GHG molecules acquire more KE before they start to descend so of course they acquire a higher temperature when they reach the ground.

How, exactly does a change in composition with no change in mass add to the global stock of available PE ?

In your equations you must hold PE constant and adjust the other terms accordingly.

218. Trick says:

Another coffee break shot. Nothing assumed below, all measured quantities, no law broken. Well, I assume Stephen is alive & breathing at the least.

Stephen: “..you must hold PE constant.”

PE is NOT conserved, it is 0 at surface for goodness sakes. If wrongly held constant, it is always then 0. PE+KE=constant is the conserved quantity, 1st Law.

Stephen asks: “How, exactly does a change in composition with no change in mass add to the global stock of available PE ?”

Let the thermo system settle to equilibrium.

The control volume (CV) is set to TOA. Net solar in – OLR = 0 at LTE.

Starting today within CV at equilibrium:
1370 * 0.7 – 4*sigma*(1-0.8/2) * Tsurface avg. ^4 = 0 solve for Teq. atm. near surface Teq.=289K

The T=289K is the temperature near the surface and agrees with measurements where the thermometer reads the mean speed of the air molecules smacking the sensitive patch.

The potential temperature a T=0 air parcel would have if brought from TOA to surface is 289K. (Stephen should look up potential temperature. It is denoted theta and sometimes To in the texts.)

Change the atm. composition alone by Stephen eating carbon based life forms, breathing in a lot of O2 and exhaling a lot of CO2. CO2 being an infrared-active gas, Stephen changes the composition of the atm., its emissivity goes up, no mass change in CV (though Stephen gains weight at the expense of the carbon based life forms), mass is conserved being neither created nor destroyed. Albedo changes a little from arctic ice melting a bit, and 1 cloud is added over where Stephen is breathing.

Let the new thermo system settle to equilibrium, it is obviously stable by inspection.

The control volume (CV) is set to TOA. Sun in – OLR = 0 at LTE.

1370 * 0.71 – 4*sigma*(1-0.82000001/2) * Tsurface avg. ^4 = 0 solve for Teq. atm. near surface Teq.=292K

The T=292K is the atm. temperature near the surface and agrees with measurements where the thermometer reads the mean speed of the air molecules smacking the sensitive patch.

The potential temperature a T~0 air parcel would have if brought from TOA to surface is 292K. (Stephen should look up potential temperature. It is denoted theta and sometimes To in the texts.)

QED exactly! The PE & Tavg. changes by Stephen’s eating & breathing alone. Once again no high alt. physics pls. Note I needed no EEL, but an explanation for how this happens might benefit therefrom.

219. Stephen Wilde says:

Ok.

I breathe out some CO2

Being radiatively more active than O2 or N it absorbs and emits more KE per molecule than they do.

Mass not being significantly affected how does that produce more PE ?

Or KE given that KE must equal PE ?

PE comes from:

i) Falling from a height which is determined by the level of solar input.

ii) The speed of falling which is determined by the strength of the gravitational field.

iii) The amount of mass available to fall from the height in i) at the speed in ii)

What has any other characteristic of a molecule got to do with it ?

In my opinion every other molecular characteristic goes to distribution of energy only and not the amount of energy that the atmosphere can hold on to.

Why would the radiative characteristics of GHGs have any effect on the creation of PE in the absence of more mass, more gravity or more insolation ?

220. Trick says:

Stephen 6:15pm: “Mass not being significantly affected how does that produce more PE ?”

Mass is conserved it doesn’t produce any more PE.

“Or KE given that KE must equal PE ?”

KE must = PE ?? Stephen, pay attention! No, KE+PE = constant. KE must = PE – constant by 1st Law.

More PE comes from:

(iv) A higher surface temperature Tavg.=292K from today’s T=289K. KE+PE = higher constant than when surface Tavg.=289K.

“What has any other characteristic of a molecule got to do with it ?”

“Why would the radiative characteristics of GHGs have any effect on the creation of PE in the absence of more mass, more gravity or more insolation ?”

Atm. emissivity goes up. Drives up Tavg. 1st law obeyed, 2nd law obeyed (no surf. heating from cooler atm. just slower cooling b/c of atm. e/2), Gas Laws fully observed, Fourier happy, Maxwell happy, Clausius happy, Carnot ghost still wishes he had written so 1st.

221. Stephen Wilde says:

“More PE comes from:

(iv) A higher surface temperature Tavg.=292K from today’s T=289K. KE+PE = higher constant than when surface Tavg.=289K.”

A higher surface temperature does not create more PE unless accompanied by more mass, more gravity or more insolation.

If one has a higher surface temperature without any of those factors then KE is being taken by the surface from somewhere else which is correspondingly cooler because there has been a redistribution of the available KE.

Think of it like this:

A planet with no atmosphere has zero PE.

Add a little gas and the amount of PE it then has is defined by the mass of that gas, the height available for it to fall from and the speed at which it can fall.

PE at the surface may be 0 but at the top it may be 100. PE consists of every unit of energy around the globe within that atmosphere and it is always matched by KE.

Nothing else matters.

If any other characteristic of the gas molecules has an effect on energy flows it cannot add to PE or KE. It merely redistributes the available KE by non radiative means which is what sets up the internal atmospheric loop that I told you about before.

222. Stephen Wilde says:

“KE+PE = constant”

Ok but a rather fine point that doesn’t affect the principles.

If KE exceeds PE for a while more energy goes out than comes in and vice versa.

The ideal lapse rate would be set at the point where they are both equal.

If an atmosphere is to be retained neither KE nor PE can be higher than the other on a long term basis.

So it is the constant that is fixed by mass, gravity and solar input.

The constant cannot be changed by any other feature of molecules.

And you still need the capability to acquire PE before KE can be held in the system. Otherwise it goes straight out again as for a body with no atmosphere.

223. Stephen Wilde says:

“Atm. emissivity goes up. Drives up Tavg”

A redistributive effect only because emissivity out to space goes up as well for a zero or near zero net effect.

Bigger temperature differential between surface and space, circulation reconfigures with more winds and a subtle climate zone shift.

Top of atmosphere still in balance and no change in temperature as observed from space.

224. Trick says:

Stephen 6:45 pm“A higher surface temperature does not create more PE unless accompanied by more mass, more gravity or more insolation.”

No. Stephen – pls read up on potential temperature, it is important, you miss the concept of To, you get the wrong answer. And KE+PE=const. too.

Demonstrate this, I wrote at 12/2 3:33 pm in gory detail for a molecule of N2 at high altitude:

KE + PE = const. Simply its PE = – m*G*Me/r. KE = ½ m*v^2
KE+PE = ½*m*v^2 – m*G*Me/r = constant by 1st law

Let’s transform & use the surface as ref. for PE = 0 where h=0:
KE+PE = ½*m*v^2 + m*g*h = constant (wherein PE=0 at surface, PE=max. at TOA where v~0)

Q: What is changed in this when surface Tavg.=289K goes to Tavg=292K and molecule is brought to surface?

A: Inspect change in v and h the molecule potentially has at the surface. The v goes up more at higher T, h goes to 0 same at surface resulting in higher T. Do you dispute that? All else the same, constant is higher with higher surface temp. PE + KE total goes up with Tavg. 288K going to 292K. PE is changed by atm. composition.

Try again.

225. Trick says:

Stephen 6:58 pm:

1) “A redistributive effect only because emissivity out to space goes up as well for a zero or near zero net effect.
2) Bigger temperature differential between surface and space, circulation reconfigures with more winds and a subtle climate zone shift.
3) Top of atmosphere still in balance and no change in temperature as observed from space.”

Let the new thermo system settle to equilibrium, it is obviously stable by inspection.

The control volume (CV) is set to TOA. Sun in – OLR = 0 at LTE.

1370 * 0.71 – 4*sigma*(1-0.82000001/2) * Tsurface avg. ^4 = 0 solve for Teq. atm. near surface Teq.=292K

1) YES. Atm. emissivity to space goes up. 0.82000001/2 from 0.8/2, half to space, half to surface. Good catch. The surface temp. raises to Tavg.=292K.
2) YES, the internal fluxes all could change, the external fluxes CV drive Tavg. to 292K.
3) YES, the point where 0.82000001/2 goes equally to space and surface raises a bit (inspect the MATH! pls, I have), as measured by satellite Tavg. still = 255K, no change. Interpret this to mean more power driven to radiating from cooler altitude.

226. wayne says:

Fellows, I am right now at a bit of a loss. Stephen and Trick are in some interesting areas attempting to, in some manner, to relate this relationship, T=T-(P/P0)^(G*(γ-1)/ γ), to a pure radiative transfer aspect for Trick and to Stephen, more on how fast an atmospheric system can shed energy upward by convection loops. Do I have that somewhat correct?

But those questions are still far removed from what I’m attempting to decipher here and I have come across a few simplifications. If you plot for each Earth, Venus, and Jupiter’s log(p) vs log(T) for all of the data you get three plots of exactly (R2>0.9998) straight linear lines for all three, that is if on Jupiter’s Galileo probes data, you use the corrected values according to the Seiff et al(1998) paper listed within http://atmos.nmsu.edu/pdsd/archive/data/gp-j-nep-3-entry-v10/gp_0001/data/asi/descent.lbl and the data http://atmos.nmsu.edu/pdsd/archive/data/gp-j-nep-3-entry-v10/gp_0001/data/asi/descent.tab .

And this is more interesting, if you then take these lines and by regression obtain the slope of each of these linear plots, whoa, for Earth and Venus those numbers are precisely the (G*(γ-1)/ γ) exponent values used at the top of this post, precisely, Earth=0.1903 and Venus=0.1716. Using this corrected Galileo probe data you get Jupiter=0.3077. Remember, these all have some tie via well known physics to the heat capacity ratios and degrees of freedom of the gases and some constant scalar that is yet to be known why.

Also a bit curious is that by using the Galileo adjusted slope you can back up through the heat capacity ratio and obtain the degrees of freedom and it is now 2.333 not 3 as just the very lowest portion of the raw data implied. Hmm.. DOF = 2 and 1/3rd, what does that imply (??), anything, or are these just values that seem to make some sense since the DOFs counts in a per-dimension basis, three for the 3D translation movement, usually just two rotational if molecules are linear for rotational, and so on, into vibrational modes but they seem to be suppressed and usually to a great degree.

I still can’t explain why this is so. Could someone home in on just the thermodynamics and help here? There is no longer a doubt in my mind that these three atmospheres are based very simply using thermodynamics.

227. wayne says:

These values get a bit tedious calculating various equivalent values, maybe a small table would help:

```
DOF       γ    (γ-1)  (γ-1)/γ 2(γ-1)/3γ Planet
------ ------- ------- ------- --------- ---------
2.333  1.8573  0.8573  0.4616    0.3077 Jupiter (corrected)
3      1.6667  0.6667  0.4000    0.2667 Jupiter (raw & low)
5      1.4000  0.4000  0.2857    0.1905
5.008  1.3994  0.3994  0.2854    0.1903 Earth
5.77   1.3466  0.3466  0.2574    0.1716 Venus
6      1.3333  0.3333  0.2500    0.1667
7      1.2857  0.2857  0.2222    0.1481
8      1.2500  0.2500  0.2000    0.1333
9      1.2222  0.2222  0.1818    0.1212
```
228. Stephen Wilde says:

wayne has dragged us back on topic so I’ll leave the other stuff alone for the time being.

Trick still seems to me to be missing the point and failing to incorporate a full description of real world behaviour in his figures.

I accept Trick’s difference of opinion and will spend a while reviewing it.

229. wayne says:

Trick, I think I now understanding everything you are saying about EEL but I continue to have some reservations.

The EEL seems closely related to the ‘hot spot’ and there is no ‘hot spot’ found at about 5.5 km. If fact from the plots I have seen there is actually a small cooling spot there today compared to earlier. Does that mean the atmosphere’s emissivity has been lowered a bit due the increase in co2? How much cooling at the surface?

You say this 0.80 emissivity is easily measured and it has been performed. Where? Do you know of some lab results on the web?

Also, just how much change in the atmosphere’s emissivity would occur if the concentration of co2 rises from 0.000390 to 0.000780? Surely you are not thinking this is a change from 0.80 to 0.82 in the example you keep using. I can see 0.80 going to something small like 0.8002 or 0.7998 but not a 2.5% change.

This has a marked tinge of alarmism as people skim these comments and others have commented that to me. That frightens marginally-scientific people reading this thread. They take your figures as real and occurring or about to happen, 0.80 at 289K is now approaching 0.82 and the surface temperature will be 292K. Well, that one huge change. Can you justify that?

(personally, I think those were just off-the-top-of-your-head examples and nowhere real, but, that has never been stated as such)

Remember, there are people reading these comments who never comment back and it does leave an impression, intentional or not.

230. tallbloke says:

Wayne: Thanks for steering this back on course, and for your queries to Trick.
The table you have produced is interesting. Playing with the numbers here.

231. wayne says:

I Said: “There is no longer a doubt in my mind that these three atmospheres are based very simply using thermodynamics.”

I don’t mean to imply that therefore the surface mean global temperature cannot and does not change over time. Certain global factors are guaranteed to have their impact on the mean temperature. Everyone very logically knows that if the sun’s output varies it will have its impact. Either the temperature will change or some other aspect, such as albedo, will change or a combination of the two.

If the albedo changes by itself, which is controlled mainly by the cloud cover, that alone will affect the mean temperature.

But after these effects are taken into account temperatures at a given altitude, or the surface, the bulk of the atmosphere still has to bend to this simple equation that is the topic here. Now isn’t that strange.

I just had to inject this so as to not leave the wrong impression myself.

232. tchannon says:

No surprise.

A planet akin to earth with radiately inactive gases will end up with a circulation pattern similar to what we see but this is beyond the comprehension of many.
This is a consequence of gas law, gravity, rotation and a flow of energy. The gas heats by selective convection pumping heat off the surface where there is a hot spot nearest the sun. Darkside cooling fails via the same process, is no inverse of convection so instead inversions form where conduction is a poor cooling mechanism. The cold poles invert and shed heat too,
Net result is circulation cells and winds, chaotic flow.

The ethereal layer of almost no thermal mass where humans live and stick thermometers is only extremely loosely linked with the true body entropy which is the body whole with long time constants.

On mean you are giving a property value. I think this needs a linkage to a flux constant for the system under evaluation. Ouch.

Not that I can prove it.

233. Stephen Wilde says:

I think tchannon’s comment is pretty much the contention that I’ve been trying to present.

If the total amount of energy retained by an atmosphere is limited by mass, gravity and insolation,as I tried to suggest then if the radiative characteristics of GHGs allow them to absorb and emit more energy radiatively then it would follow that they are denying to less radiatively active molecules energy that would otherwise have reached those less radiatively active molecules by non radiative means.

So for every GHG molecule carrying more energy you would have many non GHG molecules carrying less energy. One wouldn’t be able to measure the effect on individual non GHGs though because there are so many of them relative to the numbers of GHGs.

So the presence of GHGs just leads to a redistribution of the available energy and at the point of redistribution there is no net effect on system energy content because that is fixed by mass, gravity and insolation.

The redistribution of energy within the atmosphere will however lead to circulation changes.

But there is another point.

Having simply redistributed the available energy with a net zero thermal effect those GHGs then go on to radiate directly out to space in a way that the non radiative molecules would have been unable to do if they had been holding that energy instead.

On that basis GHGs must have a net cooling effect if radiation is faster than non radiative processes and of course it is. Unless there is a countervailing slowdown in those non radiative processes there would be net cooling.

They are like a greedy individual who grabs more than he can eat, leaves the others hungry and throws away his surplus.

So the question is really whether the supply of available energy within an atmosphere is limited by mass, gravity and insolation or whether GHGs can enable an atmosphere to retain a larger proportion of insolation than an atmosphere without them.

I would say that since GHGs both absorb more and emit more in equal proportions they cannot increase the sum total of energy from insolation that is retained within an atmosphere.

In essence GHGs restrict non radiative processes by denying energy to other molecules that would otherwise use that energy to invigorate those non radiative processes and instead facilitate radiation which provides a shortcut for energy to leave to space without having to participate in non radiative processes first.

So as I’ve said all along the energy radiating to space from GHGs leaves the atmosphere as fast as it came in but there is an equal and opposite effect on the non radiative processes which must then slow down because that energy is then no longer available to them.

The truth is that GHGs would make the system cool faster were it not for the compensating slowdown in non radiative energy transfers.

The corollary is that if for any reason the net effect of GHGs were to be warming then that would simply do the opposite by providing a speeding up of non radiative transfers.

Thus the net effect of GHGs on the system as a whole will always be zero.

And it all happens at the speed of light but the effect on the circulation takes a little while to catch up.

The precise mechanism for the shifting relationship between the net effect of radiative and non radiative processes involves the shuffling around in three dimensions of the relative proportions of KE and PE within the atmosphere as governed by the Gas Laws.

234. Stephen Wilde says:

“The truth is that GHGs would make the system cool faster were it not for the compensating slowdown in non radiative energy transfers”

Imagine an atmosphere with GHGs only and no other molecules.

Radiation comes in and is instantly absorbed and re emitted by those GHGs which reach and maintain the maximum temperature possible at that particular level of irradiation.

50% is instantly radiated upwards and leaves the system.

50% is instantly radiated downward hits the surface which warms and instantly radiates out from the surface again back to space.

The GHGs cannot absorb any of the upward return of radiation from the ground because they are already at the maximum temperature permitted by the incoming solar radiation.

The net effect is that radiation would be flowing in and out nearly as fast as on a planet with no atmosphere at all.

It wouldn’t be quite as fast as on a planet with no atmosphere because there would be some non radiative energy exchanges between the GHGs and the ground.

However the atmosphere would be holding on to very much less energy than an atmosphere with gases that could not radiate so efficiently.

The amount of energy retained within the atmosphere would be related to the MASS of the GHGs and not their radiative characteristics.

The truth is exactly the opposite of the conventional wisdom.

Our atmosphere (any atmosphere) is only warmer than it otherwise would be because of the non GHGs.

It is the non GHGs which participate more in non radiative processes of energy transfer and since those methods of energy transfer are slower than radiation the more energy that is tied up in them the warmer the system will become.

Is there a flaw in the logic ?

235. Stephen Wilde says:

Time to look at the behaviour of a single CO2 molecule more closely.

There it is, floating in the air and subjected to irradiation from sunlight.

The sunlight warms it commensurate with the power in the sunlight and 50% is then radiated up and 50% down to the surface.

The 50% going down duly warms the surface and is radiated back up again as longwave.

By the time that 50% gets back to the molecule more solar energy has arrived so it is still at the same temperature at which it emitted that 50% downward previously.

Being at that temperature it cannot absorb any more and the upward longwave gets a free pass out of the system.

If it were otherwise there would be a positive feedback loop as the molecule would be heated both by sunlight and by the ground faster than it could emit or the ground would be heated by sunlight and heat from the molecule faster than it could emit. Probably both.

Not possible because the energy available is limited by incoming solar irradiation and since we are dealing with radiative energy travelling at the speed of light it won’t hang around to raise the ambient temperature in the way energy does when it is being transported more slowly by non radiative processes.

Now it appears that as CO2 increases we see an increasing gap in the outgoing OLR spectrum where the radiation from CO2 should have been.

But remember that if 50% of the emissions from the molecule have gone down and been converted to longwave from the surface then there would be a gap in the spectrum wouldn’t there ?

All that has happened is that half the energy from the molecule has been converted to a different wavelength.

The only energy that the CO2 molecule has sent to the ground is 50% of the solar energy that it had previously absorbed and not energy acquired subsequently from the ground.

I’m raising these issues again because if correct they would help to explain wayne’s findings as regards the apparent thermal behaviour of Earth, Jupiter and Venus.

If he thinks it is off topic then I’ll refrain.

236. tallbloke says:

I’d like to do a further post on this which presents the findings in a broader context with some graphics to help get the concepts across more easily. I’ll email Wayne for discussion.

237. wayne says:

Stephen, it’s not OT. Don’t feel restrained by me. I would love to interact more with you, but my only problem is on technical things like this I’m in slow and thorough mode trying to nail down each part 100% before going on. Your last 3 posts have 44 paragraphs and I could say a lot on each but I can’t simply seem to keep up. 😉 But I do read each.

Can you get a mental view of exactly what R/Cp is? One, it has no units, it’s a ratio. It is how many Cp’s will fit within one R, right? Both are energy per K per mole. Does that ratio have an actual meaning to you besides the (λ-1)/λ that I explained above? I seem to be missing something there. Or, Stephen, have you ever run into this R/Cp anywhere else in meteorological equations?

Going to read a bit before going horizontal. 😀

238. Stephen Wilde says:

Thanks Rog.

In the meantime I’ve considered Trick’s last submission and think I see the flaw.

He upscales all the relevant parameters in parallel which does of course require a higher equilibrium temperature.

However that does not cover any process which might reduce or increase the difference between the speed of radiative transmission and the speed of non radiative transmission.

The pressure profile up through the atmosphere actually forces a different scale of response from the non radiative processes as compared to the radiative processes and as yet his figures do not reflect that.

Pressure has no effect on radiative transfer but a profound effect on non radiative transfer.

The change in speed differential between radiative and non radiative is what seems to eliminate the need for a rise in equilibrium temperature.

I think that is what lies behind wayne’s figures.

239. wayne says:

stephen, when you say “speed of radiative transmission” is that the radiative equivalent to matter conductivity? Like both being W.m/s/m2 and in this case only vertically?

240. Stephen Wilde says:

Hi wayne.

I must admit that I’m as puzzled as you seem to be about portions of Tricks workings. I just don’t have the background to be able to play around with such stuff but I can follow the general thrust in terms of logic.

The trouble with figure work is that you can make it say anything you like by a subtle omission here or misleading presentation there. Unless it is backed up by actual observations and a narrative that makes sense I find numbers highly unreliable.

Often any error is hidden deep within the relationships and is hard to tease out.

In contrast, a logical narrative either makes sense in light of observations or is clearly BS.

The problem with Trick for me is that he hasn’t as yet added enough narrative to the numbers to explain to me why a particular number or equation proves or invalidates a specific point.

There are obvious time and space problems with blog exchanges that make a more productive exchange difficult when two contributors are essentially using different languages.

Of course I may well be out of my depth with some of you but if I have such a problem then so do the majority of passing readers.

241. Stephen Wilde says:

“speed of radiative transmission” is that the radiative equivalent to matter conductivity? Like both being W.m/s/m2 and in this case only vertically?”

I’m using it to explain how fast radiation travels through an environment without significant resistance. Generally it moves at or near light speed whereas conduction, convection and latent heat transfer are much slower. Can be in any direction.

As resistance increases in any given environment then direct radiation tends to be replaced by conduction and convection as the density of the resisting material increases.

Generally the resistance is from mass, pure and simple.

One of the problems with AGW theory is that it treats all kinds of energy transmssion as if they always operate at the same speed as each other. Within an atmosphere they don’t. Especially a mixed atmosphere where many of the molecules are radiatively transparent.

Pressure then affects the speed of non radiative transfers but not radiative transfers unless there is a conversion from one to the other as a result of collisions with mass and I think that is why planetary atmospheres are constructed the way they are.

242. tallbloke says:

“The problem with Trick for me is that he hasn’t as yet added enough narrative to the numbers to explain to me why a particular number or equation proves or invalidates a specific point.”

Agreed. I often find his presentation opaque.

“Pressure then affects the speed of non radiative transfers but not radiative transfers unless there is a conversion from one to the other as a result of collisions with mass and I think that is why planetary atmospheres are constructed the way they are.”

There are several ways to measure temperature. Direct conduction to a bulb thermometer, IR being radiated from the object, even convection of air rising from a hot object can be used as a proxy. Radiation is an energy, and has to interact with matter to create heat. Clearly the action of gravity on the mass of the atmosphere increases the density of air near the surface, offering more ‘targets’ for radiating photons to hit and thermalise.

There is more condensing water vapour in humid air nearer the surface too, and this absorbs and emits photons much more readily than N2 or O2 does. I’m not sure there’s a need for a concept of ‘speed of transmission’ to augment this picture, but maybe I’m missing something in the molecular dynamics or motion of ‘air parcels’ Stephen’s description encompasses which is otherwise lost?

243. Stephen Wilde says:

I take your point, Rog, that density affects the speed of transmission of radiation and density is a product of gravity and mass so it would follow that pressure affects the speed of transmission of both radiative and non radiative activity.

In view of that I have to go back to my earlier point about the time it takes to convert KE to PE, circulate it up and down, and then reconvert PE to KE.

Pressure differentials being at the heart of the creation of PE in the first place because the gradual release of pressure as molecules gain height is what allows PE to form in place of KE.

That process takes time, incorporates the non radiative process of convection both up and down and adds an additional delay over and above the slowing down of radiation by density.

So what I mean is that non radiative energy transfers (perhaps I should just say convection) go through that additional process which radiation does not.

Furthermore the speed of that cycling process can vary even if the volume of energy going through it any given moment does not.

So, if GHGs alter the speed of that cycling process it will change the relationship between the speed of radiative transfers and the speed of non radiative transfers (or perhaps just convection).

If the cycle of KE to PE and back again were as fast as the speed at which radiation progresses more directly through an atmosphere without convection up and down then the mass of the atmosphere would not warm up as much.

Does that sound better ?

I think we can narrow down the culprit specifically to convection.

244. Nazlfrag says:

I posted this years ago on Harrys blog, I hope you don’t mind me interjecting. As I said there, I’m just a curious amateur, but it does seem all we need is Boyle.

Quoting: So, if we switched off the sun, the atmosphere would lose most of its temperature and volume but pressure will be kept a constant 1atm at sealevel by gravity. As we warm the sun back up, the atmosphere would increase in temperature and volume, regulated purely by the sun again with pressure held constant by gravity. As such, the composition of the gas is mostly irrelevant, it can be viewed as an ideal gas which will exhibit the same expansion behaviour and temperature differentials regardless of its constituent particles. The difference in composition would be in how well they conduct to equalise temp/volume at a given pressure.

…It seems obvious (and physically sound) that CO2 is more like a lubricant than a furnace.

He pointed out how I missed the freezing, mass and other errors, indeed I know it’s imprecise, but can anyone explain how CO2 could behave as a furnace, creating heat, as opposed to a lubricant, transferring heat around? It just seems the former is physically unsound.

245. Stephen Wilde says:

“I’m not sure there’s a need for a concept of ‘speed of transmission’ to augment this picture, ”

Just spotted that.

One doesn’t need such a concept to establish that total atmospheric mass rather than our emissions of CO2 are the real reason why a planet becomes warmer than predicted by the S-B equation and that consequently AGW theory fails because the mass of our emissions is proportionately so minute.

Thus to some extent I allowed myself to embark on a separate investigation which is more applicable to natural climate change and which is related to the findings by wayne and others that the atmospheric thermal profiles of planets with very different compositions have very similar lapse rates.

For that to happen despite very different compositions tells us that for whatever reason composition has little or no relevance to the thermal structure of an atmosphere.

Yet we know that composition does change actual lapse rates as witness the effect of water vapour in the troposphere and ozone in the stratosphere.

Thus we can see that composition ought to have an effect yet apparently it does not.

It occurred to me long ago that an additional variable was needed to enable that to happen and I linked it with the Earth’s circulation changes from the 50s and 60s to the 70s, 80s and 90s and now from 2000 to date.

It is clear to me that the circulation changed according to whether there was a net cooling or a net warming trend.

So then it was a matter of working out how and why which is the reason for many of my contributions here and elsewhere.

The concept of a variable speed of transmission in one component of the system is essential to explain why one doesn’t seem to need a higher equilibrium temperature when a change in one parameter (such as quantity of GHGs) occurs.

Normally such a change results in an upscaling of all the componets of a system in parallel so if one is to get back to the previous equilibrium rather than just settling at a new level then something else is required as a negative system response.

The best explanation I can come up with so far is the likelihood that the time required to change KE to PE and back again is the necessary additional negative variable that links together atmospheric circulation, the KE/PE loop within the atmosphere and the radiative balance at top of atmosphere.

That “time required” appears to be able to account for all the excess warming other than a small proportion attributable to density alone and additionally, since we know that convection can vary depending on the heat available, it seems that the time required can also vary.

In particular that time required will respond to changes in the rate of energy release from the oceans which brings us full circle to the proposition that surface pressure limits the amount of energy that the oceans can hold on to.

So if anything tries to warm the system the time required for the KE/PE loop will decrease and if anything tries to cool the system the time required will increase. In both cases a negative system response which is potentially able to restore the system to a previous equilibrium rather than just allowing it to settle at a new higher equilibrium.

The general idea is supported by what I thought was settled science (pre Trick) namely that the warmth of an atmosphere is determined solely by mass, gravity and insolation which means there just has to be a way to restore an earlier equilibrium when anything other than mass, gravity or insolation try to change it.

That is why I think we do need to augment the basic scenario.

Sorry to go on so but you did ask 🙂

246. Eric Barnes says:

Stephen Wilde says:
December 4, 2012 at 3:58 am

On that basis GHGs must have a net cooling effect if radiation is faster than non radiative processes and of course it is. Unless there is a countervailing slowdown in those non radiative processes there would be net cooling.

*****
I agree that the net effect of GHGs is cooling, at the surface of the earth.

A good exhibit A is the number of 40C days or higher at ghcn sites.

https://stevengoddard.wordpress.com/2012/12/02/1936-was-by-far-the-most-extreme-year-in-us-history/

Elevated concentration of GHG’s would speed cooling of the surface of the earth and higher extremes would be less likely.

This may have been mentioned before, but wouldn’t the below normal temps in the stratosphere be a sign that convection is slowing (because of more efficient surface cooling)?

http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v491/n7426/full/nature11579.html

247. Stephen Wilde says:

Thanks Eric.

I have referred to similar stratosphere charts here:

http://climaterealists.com/index.php?id=8723

with a discussion of the implications

and the apparent reduction in extreme highs is interesting.

Lower temperatures in the stratosphere seem to accompany more poleward / zonal jets which result in less clouds and more solar energy into the oceans so the net consequence is system warming and then more convection because of the time it takes for the extra solar energy to exit the oceans again.

Solar and oceanic effects on climate zones are far greater than any effect from more GHGs. The net effect of GHGs is not really of much significance once one appreciates that the entire atmospheric mass is involved in system warming.

Lots of stuff to discuss there but way off topic here.

If you want more detail you could browse some of my other stuff at climaterealists.com.

248. wayne says:

Thanks to everyone for the comments, Stephen, nazifrag, Eric, each of those topics needs to be explored, really much deeper. I see the logic how co2 is a lubricant and not a warmer, but that is also a bit of a one sided view, you can also say the resident time within the thick of the atmosphere slows transfer, on the other side it makes it possible to radiate in larger quanta of energy per transfer. I see stratospheres changes but that also can be viewed from two sides. Physics is like that, for every action there is an opposite and equal reaction, it can be a real b.tch most of the time.

Don’t let me stop discussions but I am going to continue to try to get everyone to look at these curious relations shown by this thread.

Look at the Venus/Earth in this light, by that one equation Venus shows 5.77 and Earth 5.008. If you just take the ratio 5 .77/5 that seems to say that Venus with its primarily CO2 atmosphere has only caused a difference between the two of 15.2%.

That’s amazing to me.

So if you slowly removed CO2 from Venus and replaced with the N2-O2 mixture to match Earth, how would that alter the surface temperature on Venus? It’s quite easy by that simple equation, 388*(92/1)^(4/(3*(5.008+2))) ≈ 917 K (derivation above). Interesting. That is assuming that the temperature at one equivalent pressure of 1013.25 hPa stays at 338K. But still, Venus got hotter with a N2/O2/CO2 atmosphere, not cooler as we have been told.

So looking from the top with low pressures downward having more degrees of freedom in the gases cools not warms. Now Jupiter, with its DOF is between 2.33 and 3 means it gets warmer slower per pressure increment. As you descend even deeper into Jupiter’s atmosphere some of the frozen DOFs of H2 will free up as the temperature gets high and pressure get high, like on Venus and beyond. Don’t know if we could ever build a probe to survive such incredibly high pressures but the lapse should move from ≈2K/km to closer to the earth’s 6.5 K/km.

I find all of this basic and quite enlightening. It seems oceans on one of the planets and none on the other two planets matters very little if any. Seems to mean radiation is actually having very little effect. It seems to imply that if we double our CO2 the DOFs in Earth’s atmosphere is going to go up to something like ≈5.010 or 5.012 instead of 5.008 because there is such a tiny concentration to begin with. That move from 5.008 to 5.012 by that equation only moves the surface mean temp on Earth only about 0.1C at best and that is assuming lapse rates are fixed at the top and low pressure, which might be true in Venus’s case, but I don’t really see that being true in Earth’s case for much of the solar radiation does get to the surface. Venus’s is primarily absorbing all of the solar input spread all of the way throughout the gases themselves.

All of this needs to be verified better so any help is much appreciated. Just by one person it might take months if not a year.

249. wayne says:

CORRECTION:

I just noticed a mistake far above telling of the derivation:

T = T0*(P/P0)^(4+(3*(DOF+2)))

it should have been:

T = T0*(P/P0)^(4/(3*(DOF+2)))

Somehow a plus slipped in but all of the calculations later properly used the correct division.

I also noticed a few others made by me, but they are minor and are found in the way I have tried to explain this topic. Most should have been able to notice them and correct on-the-fly as you read. I guess an error here does help to keep everyone thinking a bit deeper and the discussion a flowing.

250. tchannon says:

Let me really upset things… when I mention inversions I kid not, are very common.

We continue with a cold ground layer with warmer air encasing it.

251. wayne says:

Very nice display of radiosondes there, I wish NOAA had something equivalent and easy to see them over an extended area like that, all on one graphic. May I ask where the “the reference saturated adiabat Theta’w 10C ” comes from (I lack in areas of meteorology). Is this ‘reference’ a world-wide standard or just applies for areas around 45-50 latitude, like a mean temperature?

252. tchannon says:

Sorry, I don’t know clearly, I’m not an expert. Vaguely I take it to be the excess measured temperature above theoretic wet atmosphere at that height.

Now someone who knows tell me what it really is.

Indeed a neat site, what professional looks like.

253. Stephen,

You say: We know that composition changes actual lapse rates. Where is your evidence that composition changes the ideal lapse rate ? If it could do so then the very different atmosphere of Venus would NOT show the same temperature as Earth at the same pressure adjusted only for distance from the sun.

Yes, this should be a killer argument but is entirely ignored by the “religious” warmistas who think they have watertight math, which in a sense they do except it is fairy tale stuff that obviously doesn’t correctly correspond to the real world physics it is meant to represent – as demonstrated by the increasing evidence from empirically determined planetary data, beginning with Harry Huffman’s earth-Venus comparison.

Science and “religion” do not mix. Why waste your time?

254. Stephen Wilde says:

I want to know the truth because I have been interested in the subject since being less than 5 years old.

255. Steven,

Ah yes, me too. I just suggest there are better ways of getting at the truth than slogging it off with a “high priest”.

256. Stephen Wilde says:

Very true but as it happens that slogging has resulted in crystallisation in my mind during last night which I can now use to formulate a better narrative.

Suffice to say that Trick was right that PE can be increased by GHGs but the outcome after that is not as he expects.

Will work through it over next few days.

257. Stephen Wilde says:

Whoops.

I meant to say Trick was right that GHGs can affect PE but not in the way Trick thinks.

It will be a surprise to many.

258. Ulric Lyons says:

Stephen Wilde says:
November 28, 2012 at 9:17 am

“The type of clouds trhat Ulric refers to are stratiform clouds.
However such clouds normally occur at a boundary between near surface air and warmer upper air. In other words they are a sign that a temperature inversion is present.
In order to form a cloud the cooler lower layer reduces the temperature of the air at the bottom of the warmer upper air to below its dew point.
Now, with or without clouds an inversion prevents further uplift for so long as it lasts.”

Clouds weaken or eliminate inversions. Your cooler lower level (I presume you refer to night time) being cooler, is where the condensation would occur, it’s called fog, but that happens on clear nights!

“Meanwhile all around that parcel of non ascending air (taking the globe as a whole) there is descending air which is still releasing kinetic energy whilst that parcel of air remains thermally static.
Thus does kinetic energy transfer into that parcel from all around it until it reaches the same temperature as the cloud or the base of any inversion.”

Go on then, how does it transfer into that parcel from all around?

259. tallbloke says:

Wayne: I’ve been thinking about Jupiter again. You found that lower down in the atmosphere, the Degrees of Freedom value was higher (3), compared to higher up (2.333). I think I might have an idea why that might be so.

Lower down, the atmosphere is denser, with a shorter free path length for emitted photons and more frequent collisions between molecules which have less room to travel linearly, thus vibrating more ‘internally’, exercising their DOF in other ways than through lateral or vertical motion. The atmosphere is more viscous, with lower wind velocities.

Higher up in the atmosphere, faster ‘unidirectional winds’ limit the directions molecules can move in. They are more likely to be ‘swept along with the tide’. There are less molecules per volumetric unit, and consequently less collisions. They are less likely to express their kinetic energy as intra-molecular oscillations.

Make sense?

260. wayne says:

tallbloke: “Make sense?”

First, fantastic tallbloke, you are now speaking more in my language and staying to the exact topic. I sure appreciate you giving this a hard and deep look without wandering.

I am going to brush away one thing you are saying that I would prefer to drop from my answer below, wind. When I look at this relation it is apparent with just three, maybe four, basic parameters this is describing a very core principle here. Wind, current, oceans, cycles, convection, etc, etc, short term weather and even the concept of a lower surface itself do not really apply here, yet. There may be intersections to each but I don’t think everyone really understands ‘why’ this is saying what it appears to be saying to begin with. So, I’ll leave off wind, just keep increase your time horizon until time washes all of the momentary variances away, this is an averaged atmosphere of any planet or moon, the average atmosphere. They might not even HAVE a surface, but they all do have pressure differences, guaranteed, and thanks to gravity. later maybe this can be applied at various latitude bands and hopefully hold.

You ask does this make sense. Yes and no.☺ First realize that 2.33 came up when another team applied some unknown logic and equations to the raw data and made it more consistent to them. Then the log(p)/log(T) instead of being somewhat warped, it now is a precise straight line. It states they applied the gas laws to it so no wonder it became straight.

Next, the 2/3 is not a constant if you include *any* of the stratosphere in the pressure span you are computing. When the lapse goes to zero like in Earth’s lower stratosphere that 2/3 goes like wise to zero, temperature no longer changes with distance or over pressure changes.

I haven’t said this before but I think the 2 1/3 is an artifact, as if part of Jupiter’s probes track does include a part of the stratosphere or is starting to smoothly become the stratosphere and it has drug the more-correct 3 downward with it. If they had recorded pressures even higher that would have lowered it even more as they straightened and homogenized the data.

Venus also shows a nearly vertical section above about 100 mb and there that 2/3 would go to zero. Maybe Jupiter does too, but, the probe started lower than that so we don’t see it in the profile, or, maybe on Jupiter instead of jumping quickly to vertical just smoothly continues to curve that direction but never attains a zero lapse. I don’t have such knowledge.

More than trying to blame this on the DOF of the molecules themselves (by logic it seems they should always have 3) we should first look elsewhere.

Now, COULD it be possible that one of the three freedoms in some unusual manner is not expressing itself in the heat capacity? Tallbloke, that is one very good question. Possible, but in physics I have never come across anything even close showing such an effect. It might be hidden out there on the web or in texts and papers not located yet.

You thinking very parallels mine now and each of these aspects need to be searched out if they are there to find. Something is causing this consistency or it appears so. Like N&K, we need more data on planets and moons with thick atmospheres. ;(

But just by smoothing over some of the unknowns, overall, Earth’s 5.0 is not very far from Venus’s 5.77 and that by itself seems to say much right there. If 97% of CO2 is 0.77 and 0.0390% is 0.008 then how much would a doubling of CO2 to 0.0780% cause? It seems so very little, and I was real a real surprise to me, it is even negative. Sure seems something is amiss.

Enough on that for now, I ramble.

Another aspect is when you look at data on heat capacity ratios, co2 shows a change with temperature and n2 and o2 do not. If that were occurring on Venus, even if just using %*R/Cp, it’s profile should be greatly warped yet none of the probes show this. That seems to add some credence to my comment on the 0.77 part of the 5.77 on Venus. It seems to say yes, most of co2’s vibration freedoms are partially and on some of them completely frozen out. That’s strange, why in an atmosphere when in a bottle in a lab that is not expressed?

it just keeps getting more interesting. 🙂

261. Stephen Wilde says:

One also gets a near vertical section between our stratosphere and thermosphere.

It appears to happen between layers in which the slope of the lapse rate reverses direction since the thermosphere gets ‘hotter’ with height as does the stratosphere. If there is no actual reversal then it is just a smooth curve.

I’m quite sure that every planet has similar variations between layers and that the different slopes in each layer are due to compositional variations.

I’m also sure that whenever compositional changes occur in one or more layers then the slopes change subtly in every layer so as to maintain the ideal lapse rate overall from surface to space.

I’m also coming round to the view that the net thermal effect of CO2 is actually negative because it facilitates energy loss to space so if the maths supports that I would not be surprised.

In the end I think it comes down to degrees of freedom and geometry around a sphere where a gas is subjected to a pressure gradient from surface to space.

262. tchannon says:

If you plot thermal flux against frequency, the law is log/log until it gets near the peak.

One I prepared earlier

263. wayne says:

Stephen, got ya’.

That is why I kept insisting that everyone keep your thoughts in the tropospheres of the planets. Higher and you are getting out of LTE and into chemical and solar wind and other non-thermodynamic effects. If more energy than what this equation implies is flowing into a layer and being absorbed or latent heat is being released it will alter both the lapse curve and this pressure level curve, no doubt. If energy is being drawn from a layer more than implied by this equation, the opposite occurs. Those are usually just weather unless that effect is permanent like the upper cloud levels on Venus. There this equation says a straight lapse line but it is not a perfect line, it has a very small warp at such levels. That is a secondary effect that has to be applied to get more perfect.

A very picky question about how the clouds of Venus affect this relation would be; is it actually a change in the gas’s DOF or does this mean a change in the two-thirds scalar? Seems it would be one or the other but not both.

264. tallbloke says:

Wayne: Please don’t be too quick to dismiss winds from the equation. Jupiter’s winds are unidirectional, and permanent. That’s why we see the banded structures in its atmosphere. There is turbulence at the edges of the bans, because adjacent bands rotate around the planet at different speeds, but this is a small percentage of the motion.

The higher in the troposphere the less dense. The less dense, the faster the wind. The faster the wind, the more it discourages vertical motion.

265. wayne says:

tallbloke, maybe I get too single minded and it shows. Mia culpa. You are correct on the winds, on both Jupiter and Venus, they are hugely important in equalizing the entire atmosphere and I didn’t mean to imply otherwise.

Your first comment on the lower denser portion expressing all three translation freedoms I totally agree. However near the end when you said “… thus vibrating more ‘internally’, exercising their DOF in other ways than through lateral or vertical motion.” you lost me there because in H2 & He there are no vibration levels ever expressed. He doesn’t even have one. H2’s vibration mode is only in the visual band. Where you really speaking maybe of H2’s two rotational freedoms? And once again He doesn’t have those either being mono-atomic.

“Higher up in the atmosphere, faster ‘unidirectional winds’ limit the directions molecules can move in.”

I don’t see that either. Just because there is a high velocity wind the molecules would not realize it. Everything is relative. That is why I said on another comment above that maybe this just that the scientists homogenizing the probe’s data ‘made’ the 2.333 in the manner they artificially corrected the raw data. Instead of leaving the lower portion that is linear in the raw data alone they bent the lapse to make the two ends meet which removed the bend that you see in the original data. I should have caught that but I hadn’t taken the time to compare the two datasets, one raw and the other made nice and straight from beginning to end. Follow me there?

I have spent a lot of time making sure I understand correctly (or as ‘correctly’ as possible) all of the molecular aspects, it is rather complicated and each species is a little different due to the quantum effects. I sure am glad I sat through a course in statistical mechanics and a couple in QM this summer or I would be lost. Most of my knowledge on the radiative and spectroscopy side I’ve been forced to rely mostly from universities online.

OTOH, maybe everyone here and at wuwt already knows all of this and it is just me that was a bit in the dark on atmospheric physics until during this last year. One thing I do know now is just how badly the IPCC documents and the warmist blog crowd commenters have messed up so many minds with their “explanations”, that’s for sure, lies by omission galore, that is their primary MO.

266. tallbloke says:

Wayne:
“Just because there is a high velocity wind the molecules would not realize it. Everything is relative.”

OK, this is where I’m getting lost then. Back up the thread I originally thought the ‘degrees of freedom’ were the intra-molecular motions of tri-atomic molecules, twisting, bending etc. Then Stephen said I needed to include their freedoms to move in the three spatial dimensions. This seemed to be what you were saying too. But now I’m pointing out that winds on Jupiter are pretty much uni-directional and pretty fierce in strength, limiting the molecules ability to move freely up, down, side to side or backwards, you are saying ‘its all relative’. Relative to what?

I guess where I’m tilting is to ask whether your DOF parameter is actually counting degrees of freedom, or the extent to which the molecules are able to express those degrees of freedom in the environment they find themselves in. You are saying the Jupiter data analysts must have messed up because they end up with a slope which implies less than three DOF. I’m saying maybe they didn’t, and the reason the DOF number is less than three is because the constituent molecules are prevented from expressing the full extent of the three DOF by the strong unidirectional winds. hence the nice pretty coloured bands round Jupiter.

267. wayne says:

Ok, I see where you my have a bit of wrong view of “degrees of freedom”. They do not have to do with the actual movement of the molecules like in wind or when bouncing about. It matters not how much they move or even if they move at all. It has to do with the dimensions (xyz) in which they can possibly move. That simple. Everything can possibly move in all of xyz so you always have those three for translation freedoms.

In the rotational freedoms it is the dimensions in which the molecule as a whole can possibly rotate and now you need to also think of symmetries in the xyz dimensions. If the entire particle is spherical (one atom), it is symmetrical in all of xyz so it has zero rotational freedoms. Sound weird but even if a single atom could rotate it still has technically zero degrees of freedom; it is a smooth spherical surface so rotated it is the same.

A two atom molecule is only symmetrical in one dimension, its long axis through the center of the two atoms, so you can only count the other two dimensions. A linear tri-atomic molecule like co2 also only has only two but H2O is bent so it is not symmetrical in any dimension and gets all three.

Same pattern for vibrational but it gets much more complex. See wiki “degrees of freedoms” for a good graphic showing the various different modes. No wonder you haven’t followed this topic totally, I do know Stephen missed much of it too.

Now on the topic of whether a degree of freedom is “expressed” or not. I picked the term ‘express’, I simply could not seem to come up with a better term to describe when one of those degrees of freedom was only fractionally counted. It is related to a degree of freedom being “frozen out” or partially “frozen out” (see wiki on DOF again, in most physics topics they are ok explaining this and there are at least ten more good sources out there) But this is speaking at the quantum level, like interactions between the electric fields from the electrons of neighbor molecules collectively or how they act on collisions or to photon capture. See, not about wind, that is a large scale effect.

One more thing, dimensions of our 3d world, they are used in many parts of physics of course. Here it has been used in two completely different areas or topics. One is the DOF counting as explained above. The other place was when I was speaking of the four horizontal directions and the vertical up and down energy transfers broken into xyz components. Different topics so don’t mix the two just because they are both speaking of dimensions.

Better? Oh man, you might need to re-read some above. Sorry if it was me not explaining it clearly, I’m not a physics professional, writer, speaker, or teacher so expressing myself in physics is one of my weaker points, I catch myself using weak terms when if I took more time I would realize there is a much clearer way to describing it. Dr. Brown is remarkable in that aspect, he’s a teacher, writer and a professional and the crystal clear words just roll out.

268. tallbloke says:

Thanks Wayne,
I’m kinda forcing the clearer explanation from you. Which is good exercise for you, and good reading for people less versed in the literature concerning molecular scale dynamics.

I still think there could be something in the wind, though it may be an magneto-electro-dynamic effect like polarisation or alignment of particles. Don’t forget Jupiter and the other gas giants actually emit more energy than they receive from the Sun.

269. Tim Folkerts says:

Wayns suggested I look at this thread, so — without wading through the 200+ comments — here are my impressions of the initial post

1) Wayne re-discovered that the adiabatic lapse rate exists in the atmospheres of planets.
2) Wayne unfortunately got “snookered” twice by two different coincidences.
3) Radiation balance (and therefore GHGs) is STILL needed in this model.

11111111111111111111111111111111111111111111111
It is not surprising that the temperature profile for a planet might be given by
Φ =T (P0/P)^(R/Cp)

or equivalently
T = Φ (P/P0)^(R/Cp) = Φ (P/P0)^((γ-1)/γ)

The potential temperature, Φ, is defined as the temperature that the parcel would acquire if adiabatically brought to a standard reference pressure, P0 (wikipedia). Hence, any planet where the profile is set by convection of a (non-condensing) gas, the temperature should follow this approximate profile. For a convecting atmosphere, there is not much time or ability for the convecting gas to exchange energy with its surroundings, so it will be basically adiabatic.

Wayne’s equation IS the standard result for the adiabatic lapse rate, g/Cp, just written in a different form.

2222222222222222222222222222222222222222222

COINCIDENCE 1: Earth.
The dry adiabatic lapse rate on earth is ~ 0.0098 K/m. The US Standard Atmosphere, on the other hand DEFINES the lapse rate to be 0.0065 K, which is closer to the actual lapse rate observed in the earth’s atmosphere (ie close to the MOIST adiabatic lapse rate, not the DRY adiabatic lapse rate). The ratio of these two numbers = 0.0065/0.0098 = 0.663 ≈ 2/3.

With G = 1, the equation T = Φ (P/P0)^((γ-1)/γ) accurately predicts what it is designed to predict, the dry adiabatic lapse rate of an N2 & O2 atmosphere with γ = 1.4. The factor G = 2/3 is correcting for the fact that earth does not follow the DRY adiabatic lapse rate for γ = 1.4, but instead has a condensing gas (H2O) which messes up the lapse rate by an amount that happens to be 2/3.

COINCIDENCE 2: Venus
Wayne used 5.77 for the “degrees of freedom” on Venus, which corresponds to
γ = 1.347 and
(γ-1)/γ = 0.2572
2/3 (γ-1)/γ = 0.172

Some sources on the internet suggest that the actual value of gamma is

T (K) gamma
198 1.37 Lange’s Handbook of Chemistry, 10th ed
273 1.31
288 1.304
373 1.281
673 1.235

273 1.3 http://www.efunda.com/units/convert_units.cfm?From=55&mrn=0#ConvInto
373 1.26
473 1.23
573 1.22
673 1.21
873 1.19

The point is that Wayne’s value of γ = 1.347 could only be correct for temperatures well below 0C! Instead, we can work backwards to find that (γ-1)/γ = 0.172 for γ = 1.21, which would be about right for T = 673 K = 400 C, which is a typical temperature for Venus. (In fact, the lapse rate fits better using a smaller value of γ near the surface (1.2) and a larger value farther above the surface (1.22). This is what would expected from the tables listed above, where γ increase as the temperature drops!)

With the wrong γ = 1.35, G = 2/3
With the right γ = 1.21, G = 1.

333333333333333333333333333333333333333333

The equations for both earth and Venus need one point to get started:
* 216.65 K @ 22629 Pa for Earth
* 338.3 K @ 101300 Pa for Venus

Once a single point is known for either planet, then the rest of the temperatures can be calculated. But you need some way to find that one point!

That one point for each planet cannot be derived within the theory provided – Wayne simply provides numbers that empirically fits the observations. Some ADDITIONAL information is needed before you can DERIVE that one point for each planet. I submit that the other constraint needed is the radiative energy balance.

For earth, the primary effect of adding more CO2 would not be to change γ ever so slightly (as Wayne hypothesized). The main effect would be to change this starting point. With more CO2, the TOA would be a little higher, so the 216.65 K temperature might occur higher where the pressure is 22000 Pa instead of P = 22629 Pa (which would actually raise the surface temperature by ~ 1.5 K in this model.)

270. wayne says:

TimF, third first, you say “The equations for both earth and Venus need one point to get started:”

That’s right. I was not, and am still not, at the point to explain radiatively why a certain vertical point is at the temperature it is, but getting closer. But this post was not about that radiative aspect.

Second, you said “Wayne used 5.77 for the “degrees of freedom” on Venus”

That’s right and the reason that value was used is explained in all of the comments. It is apparent you did not read this thread but Tallbloke explain at the very top post that this was unexpected posted. Much of the explanations are within the comments.

Third, you said “ T = Φ (P/P0)^(R/Cp) = Φ (P/P0)^((γ-1)/γ) ”

That’s also right. That is the potential temperature equation that matches none of the three planets without a modification. If each planet required a different adjustment I never would have written the original comment to begin with.

You are right that the 5.77 is the most questionable value and I’m still investigating the characteristics of co2 at the molecular level, it’s getting deeper in qm, that fine. I run into some amazing aspect of co2, like:

“The experimental ratios obtained were extremely close to the ideal gas behavior theoretical values without contributions from the vibrational degrees of freedom. This supports the theory that the vibrational modes are not active at room temperature. The vibrational modes are too quantized to be apply the equipartition theorem, that is the energy states are far apart, and only the lowest energy levels are populated at room temperature. The rotational states are more closely spaced, and more can be expected to be populated as described by the Boltzmann distribution. ”

This is from a university lab (while teaching I assume) but curiously they show the lambda much higher that theoretically, ~1.346 – 1.347. I found that curious and am still investigating along those lines. If these results were not apparent I would not have posted the first comment that became this top post.

Other universities showed the same results, many trying to explain away the results not matching the theoretical value. Others stated an answer as to why the vibration was nearly absent.

Could it be that most lab test are in small container with the extinguish length much larger than the container. In a gigantic atmosphere that dwarfs the vibrational line’s extinguish length is that why the expression seems nearly totally suppressed? More questions.

This whole post was a question, not a statement, so stop trying to pick it apart as a statement if you do not know “why”.

Read the entire thread Tim (for ease you can just skip much of Trick-Stephen when they were discussion a separate topic), you might see what the discussion was all about.

271. Tim Folkerts says: