Archive for the ‘Clouds’ Category

Southern Ocean surrounds Antarctica [image credit: theozonehole.com]


Another hole in ‘settled’ climate science? Over-sensitivity to changing conditions may sound familiar. Researchers find “The major implication is that, even though the latest CMIP models improve the simulation of their mean states, such as radiation fluxes at the top of the atmosphere, the detailed cloud processes are still of large uncertainty.” Southern Ocean clouds seem to have been ‘improperly simulated’ when compared to data.
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Clouds can cool or warm the planet’s surface, a radiative effect that contributes significantly to the global energy budget and can be altered by human activities, claims Eurekalert.

The world’s southernmost ocean, aptly named the Southern Ocean and far from human pollution but subject to abundant marine gases and aerosols, is about 80% covered by clouds.

How does this body of water and relationship with clouds contribute to the world’s changing climate?

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Netherlands beach [image credit: dutchreview.com]


Dutch meteorologists expect ‘we will have more cloudy summer weather again’ sometime in the future. For now: more sun = more heat. Who knew?
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The Netherlands this summer has had the highest amount of solar radiation recorded since 1976, the Royal Netherlands Meteorological Institute (KMNI) reported.

The “sunny summer fits in with the trend of increasing solar radiation in the Netherlands since the 1990s,” the KMNI added.

The Dutch west coast currently receives 9% more sunshine than the country’s east though solar radiation has increased 3% in summer and 5% in spring, KMNI reported.

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Sea ice optional? [image credit: BBC]


Sir David King’s plan from last year, now revived: Send in the clouds. The general idea: ‘creating white cloud cover that will come over the Arctic Sea during the three months of the polar summer. They hope this would reflect sunlight away so that the growth of ice over the Arctic sea during the previous winter is retained through the summer.’ Sir David: “And if we could just repeat that every year for the coming 20 or 30 years, then we might manage to create the ice cover that is needed to protect the Arctic Sea.” And then he woke up?
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The heatwaves will kick in even if countries stick to their current climate targets, but refreezing the Arctic could curb dangerous changes, former chief scientific advisor Sir David King says.
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The record-breaking heatwave that scorched swathes of Europe in recent months will become an “average” summer as soon as 2035, even if countries stick to their current climate targets, new research suggests.

The Met Office’s Hadley Centre has forecast an average summer in central Europe will be more than 4°C hotter by 2100 than it was before humans started burning fossil fuels at scale, reports Sky News.

Researchers said they are confident in their analysis because they found a “very satisfactory” alignment between recorded average temperatures since 1850 and the figures that were predicted by computer models.

The Climate Crisis Advisory Group (CCAG), which commissioned the research, called the data an “urgent reminder” of the need for countries to go “well beyond” their climate plans, known as nationally determined contributions (NDCs), which together aim to limit global warming to ideally 1.5°C.

The analysis shows that “even if countries meet their commitments to reduce emissions they have made so far, the situation is still set to get worse, with weather in Europe predicted to become even more extreme than seen this summer,” said former government chief scientific advisor and CCAG chair Sir David King.

Almost two-thirds of Europe and much of England is currently enduring a drought that is hitting food and power production, driven in part by hot weather. The extreme heat in July broke records in England, Scotland and France.

“This data doesn’t fully account for the instability of the Arctic, which we now know is a global tipping point that could have major cascading consequences for the entire planet,” Sir David warned.

He said it was “abundantly clear” that countries need to not only meet their NDCs, but consider increasing them.
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The CCAG argues mitigative action must include three things: reducing emissions, removing existing emissions in vast quantities and repairing “broken parts of the climate system, starting with the Arctic”.

It reiterated its calls from last year to refreeze the Arctic, which is warming much faster than the rest of the world, exacerbating other extreme weather events around the globe.

“It is only through the mitigative measures of Reduce, Remove and Repair, pursued with equal vigour and urgency, that we can hope to move away from the path to disaster we’re currently set on and achieve a manageable future for humanity,” Sir David added.

Full report here.

Cosmic Rays are Decreasing

Posted: July 29, 2022 by oldbrew in Clouds, cosmic rays, Cycles
Tags:

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The article notes: ‘Climate scientists are engaged in a lively debate about whether or not cosmic rays affect cloud cover.’

Spaceweather.com

July 26, 2022: Cosmic rays in the atmosphere are rapidly subsiding. In the past year alone, radiation levels in the air high above California have plummeted more than 15%, according to regular launches of cosmic ray balloons by Spaceweather.com and Earth to Sky Calculus. The latest measurement on July 23, 2022, registered a 6 year low:

This development, while sudden, is not unexpected. Cosmic rays from deep space are repelled by solar activity; when one goes up, the other goes down. Since 2021, Solar Cycle 25 has roared to life faster than forecasters expected. The onset of the new solar cycle has naturally led to a decrease in cosmic radiation reaching Earth.

To many readers this may sound counterintuitive. After all, don’t solar flares produce radiation? Yes, but most high-energy radiation doesn’t come from the sun; it comes from deep space.Every day galactic cosmic rays from distant supernova explosions…

View original post 180 more words

Once again it’s my pleasure to publish a new paper by Ned Nikolov and Karl Zeller at the Talkshop. In this study, we see the presentation of a climate conundrum, and recent surface solar radiation data which helps shed new light on the questions surrounding the ongoing adjustment of global temperature datasets. This new study applies theory developed in Ned and Karl’s previous paper to enable quantification of the global temperature drop during the “1970s ice-age scare”. This won’t be the last word on the topic, but it offers a solid grounding for further research.

A PDF version of this article can be downloaded here.

Implications of a New Gridded Dataset of Surface Solar Radiation
for the Evolution of Earth’s Global Surface Temperature Since 1960

Ned Nikolov, Ph.D. and Karl Zeller, Ph.D.
July, 2022

Abstract

A new data set of measured Surface Solar Radiation (SSR) covering six continents (Yuan et al. 2021) reveals that the Earth surface received annually 6.6 W m-2 less shortwave energy in 2019 than it did in the early 1960s, and that the average solar flux incident on land decreased by 8.2 W m-2 between 1962 and 1985. Since the Sun is the primary source of energy to the climate system, this pattern of SSR change over the past 60 years (oftentimes referred to as global dimming) suggests that the early 1960s were much warmer than the present. However, all modern records of global surface air temperature show a net warming of about 1.0 K between 1962 and 2019. We investigate this conundrum with the help of an independently derived model (previously verified against CERES observations) that accurately converts observed SSR anomalies into changes of global surface temperature. Results from the SSR-based temperature reconstruction are compared to observed global surface temperatures provided by UAH 6.0 and HadCRUT5 datasets. We find that the SSR-based global temperature estimates match quite well the UAH satellite record from 1982 to the present in terms of overall trend and interannual variability suggesting that the observed warming of the past 40 years was the result of a decreased cloud albedo and an increased SSR rather than rising atmospheric CO2 concentrations. The HadCRUT5 record also shows a satisfactory agreement with the SSR-based temperatures over the same time period. However, between 1962 and 1983, the SSR-based temperature reconstruction depicts a steep global cooling reaching a rate of -1.3 K/decade during the 1970s. This is drastically different from the mild warming claimed by HadCRUT5 over this time period. The cooling episode indicated by the SSR data is corroborated by more than 115 magazine and newspaper articles published throughout the 1970s as well as a classified CIA Report from 1974 all quoting eminent climatologists of the day, who warned the public that the observed worldwide drop of temperatures threatened the global food supply and economic security. Based on this, we conclude that researchers in charge of the HadCRUT dataset have likely removed the 1962 – 1983 cooling episode from the records before the publication of HadCRUT1 in 1994 in an effort to hide evidence contradicting the UN Resolution 43/53 from 1988, which proclaimed a global warming caused by greenhouse gases as a major societal concern, and urged Governments to treat it as a priority issue in climate research and environmental protection initiatives.

  1. Introduction

It is a matter of conventional wisdom now that the Earth was significantly cooler during 1960s compared to the 21st Century. Similarly, no one disputes that the planet’s surface temperature was 1.2oC lower in the beginning of the 20th Century compared to the present. This paradigm of climate change is based on surface temperature records maintained by several research teams that show remarkable consistency with one another. Figure 1 portrays global temperature anomalies based on 6 datasets supposedly constructed using different approaches summarized by Morice et al. (2021). All global records depict a nearly continuous warming since 1920 with a brief pause of the temperature rise between 1940 and 1980. No record shows a drop of global temperature between 1960 and 1980, which is at odds with a well-documented, decade-long discussion in the media about an ongoing rapid cooling during the 1970s currently known as the “1970s ice-age scare”.

Figure 1. Global surface temperature anomaly from 1850 to 2021 according to 6 official data sets. Note the remarkable consistency among various time series (borrowed from Fig. 8 of Morice et al. 2021).

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Welcome to another round of evidence-free alarmist climate assertions and propaganda, such as these gems: ‘climate-fueled weather events’ and ‘greenhouse gas pollution’. The summary says ‘Projects will give better understanding of Earth’s atmosphere’. But wasn’t it all supposed to be settled a long time ago?
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The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) today announced $14 million in funding for 22 projects aimed at improving climate change predictions, says Eurekalert.

As extreme weather events and impacts of climate change continue to escalate, the research projects will advance fundamental scientific understanding of atmospheric processes, ranging from cloud formation to Arctic weather.

Expanding the scientific understanding of extreme weather and climate patterns is key to tackling the climate crisis and meeting President Biden’s climate goals like slashing greenhouse-gas emissions.

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Cumuliform cloudscape over Swifts Creek, Australia
[image credit: Wikipedia]


Looking into the past and future of climatic conditions on computer models can give somewhat cloudy results, at least partly because “there’s considerable uncertainty about the simulation of clouds in global climate models”.
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Were Earth’s oceans completely covered by ice during the Cryogenian period, about 700 million years ago, or was there an ice-free belt of open water around the equator where sponges and other forms of life could survive?

Using global climate models, a team of researchers from Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) and the University of Vienna has shown that a climate allowing a waterbelt is unlikely and thus cannot reliably explain the survival of life during the Cryogenian, says Phys.org.

The reason is the uncertain impact of clouds on the epoch’s climate.

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Cloud guesswork is hindering climate models, therefore relying heavily on their outputs to decide policies must be risky. A professor commented that we may “need a Manhattan Project level of new federal funding and interagency coordination to actually solve this problem.” This can’t be brushed aside as a minor issue.
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We hear a lot about how climate change will change the land, sea, and ice says Eurekalert.

But how will it affect clouds?

“Low clouds could dry up and shrink like the ice sheets,” says Michael Pritchard, professor of Earth System science at UC Irvine. “Or they could thicken and become more reflective.”

These two scenarios would result in very different future climates. And that, Pritchard says, is part of the problem.

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Ammonia in the upper troposphere originates from livestock and fertiliser emissions, say the researchers. CERN says “anthropogenic ammonia has a major influence on atmospheric aerosol particles”. Implications for climate models are suggested.
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Aerosol particles can form and grow in Earth’s upper troposphere in an unexpected way, reports the CLOUD collaboration in a paper published today in Nature.

The new mechanism may represent a major source of cloud and ice seed particles in areas of the upper troposphere where ammonia is efficiently transported vertically, such as over the Asian monsoon regions.

Aerosol particles are known to generally cool the climate by reflecting sunlight back into space and by making clouds more reflective. However, how new aerosol particles form in the atmosphere remains relatively poorly known.

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I’m delighted Ned Nikolov and Karl Zeller have chosen the Talkshop as the venue for the publication of this new open peer review paper on climate sensitivity. Scientific advance at the cutting edge has always been the most important aim of this blog, and I think this paper truly is an advance in our understanding of the climate system and the factors which support and modulate surface temperature on Earth and other rocky planets. 

The paper is mathematically rigorous, but is also accessible to everyone, thanks to Ned and Karl’s exemplary effort to fully explain their concepts and definitions in terms which can be understood by any interested reader who has some familiarity with the climate debate. Building on the bedrock of their 2014 and 2017 papers, this new work extends the applicability and validates the postulates of those previous papers by examining the causes of variability in planetary surface temperature and incorporating the previous findings in quantifying and deriving equations to model them. They find that Earth is sensitive to changes in cloud cover, which affects the amount of solar shortwave radiation reaching the surface, but not very sensitive to changes in Total Solar Irradiance arriving at the top of the atmosphere. They also find that the sensitivity to changes in CO2 levels has been heavily overestimated by current climate models. They show that a doubling of atmospheric CO2 concentration from 280 ppm to 560 ppm will cause an undetectable global warming of 0.004K.

A PDF of the paper can be downloaded here:  ECS_Universal_Equations.

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Exact Formulas for Estimating the Equilibrium Climate Sensitivity of Rocky Planets & Moons to Total Solar Irradiance, Absorbed Shortwave Radiation, Planetary Albedo and Surface Atmospheric Pressure.
Ned Nikolov, Ph.D. and Karl Zeller, Ph.D.
April, 2022

1. Introduction

The term “Equilibrium Climate Sensitivity” (ECS) has become a synonym for the steady-state response of global surface temperature to a modeled long-wave radiative forcing caused by a doubling of atmospheric CO2 concentration with respect to an assumed pre-industrial level of 280 ppm. According to climate models based on the Greenhouse theory, an increase of atmospheric CO2 from 280 ppm to 560 ppm would produce a net radiative forcing (i.e. an atmospheric radiant-heat trapping) of 3.74 W m-2 (Gregory et al. 2004) resulting in a global surface warming between 2.5 K and 4.0 K with a central estimate of 3.0 K according to IPCC AR6 (see p. 11 in Climate Change 2021: The Physical Science Basis. Summary for Policymakers). This implies an average unit ECS of 3.0/3.74 = 0.8 K / (W m-2) with a range of 0.67 ≤ ECS ≤ 1.07 K / (W m-2). Contemporary climate science and IPCC Assessment Reports do not discuss global temperature sensitivities to changes in cloud albedo, absorbed solar radiation or total surface atmospheric pressure. Consequently, no equations have been derived/proposed thus far to calculate these sensitivities. The reason for such an omission is the implicit assumption made by IPCC based on the 19th-Century Greenhouse theory (Arrhenius 1896) that the observed warming during most of the 20th Century and especially over the past 40 years was chiefly caused by an increase of industrial CO2 emissions, which are believed to trap outgoing long-wave radiation in the Earth’s troposphere and reduce the rate of surface infrared cooling to Space.

However, a plethora of studies published during the past 15 years have shown through both satellite and surface observations that the absorption of solar radiation by the Earth-atmosphere system has increased significantly since 1982 due to a decreased cloud cover/albedo, a phenomenon often referred to as “global brightening” (e.g. Goode & Pallé 2007; Wild 2009; Herman et al. 2013; Stanhill et al. 2014; Hofer et al. 2017; Pfeifroth et al. 2018; Pokrovsky 2019;  Delgado-Bonal et al. 2020; Dübal & Vahrenholt 2021;  Yuan et al. 2021). This implies a global warming driven by a rising surface solar radiation rather than CO2.

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Ross Ice Shelf, Antarctica


It’s noted that ‘Getting clouds right…is important for calculating how much solar radiation reaches Earth.’ A difference of 10 watts per square metre could be involved in some zones, the researchers found.
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Clouds come in myriad shapes, sizes and types, which control their effects on climate, says Phys.org.

New research led by the University of Washington shows that splintering of frozen liquid droplets to form ice shards inside Southern Ocean clouds dramatically affects the clouds’ ability to reflect sunlight back to space.

The paper, published March 4 in the open-access journal AGU Advances, shows that including this ice-splintering process improves the ability of high-resolution global models to simulate clouds over the Southern Ocean—and thus the models’ ability to simulate Earth’s climate.

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Several types of cirrus clouds [image credit: Piccolo Namek @ Wikipedia]


Headline: ‘Airborne study reveals surprisingly large role of desert dust in forming cirrus clouds’. Researchers found ‘Even at low concentrations dust was found to play a big role in controlling cloud properties’. One said: “These results are a striking message to the aerosol and cloud science community, that we need to improve our treatment of dust and cloud formation in climate models to more accurately predict current and future climate.” Not much faith can be put in predictions of the future climate if predicting the present one is known to be inaccurate?
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Every year several billion metric tons of mineral dust are lofted into the atmosphere from the world’s arid regions, making dust one of the most abundant types of aerosol particles in the atmosphere, says Phys.org.

Now, scientists are learning that tiny bits of dust from the hottest and driest parts of the Earth are a surprisingly large driver in forming the delicate, wispy ice clouds known as cirrus in the cold, high-altitudes of the atmosphere.

While scientists have known that desert dust particles can seed certain clouds, the extent of that relationship has been a long-standing question.

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Arctic sea ice [image credit: Geoscience Daily]


Funny how climate science is so insistent on its dogma without knowing enough about aerosol effects, or cloud cover effects for that matter. Talk of ‘better understanding climate change’ is fine, but all we hear in the media is that the debate is over and it’s all cut and dried as far as alarmists are concerned?
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Scientists at EPFL and the Paul Scherrer Institute (PSI) have studied the chemical composition and origin—whether natural or anthropogenic—of aerosols in a region spanning from Russia to Canada, says Phys.org.

Their findings provide unique insights for helping researchers better understand climate change in the Arctic and design effective pollution-mitigation measures.

The work was made possible thanks to the joint effort of scientists from three continents.

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Arctic sea ice [image credit: cbc.ca]


One finding was that snow cover variability was more ‘extreme’ than expected, pointing to the need for further research as well as improvements to climate models. Whether the recent Arctic weather/climate history is a reliable guide to future conditions remains to be seen.
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Hundreds of international researchers are currently analyzing observations from the one-year MOSAiC expedition, during which hundreds of environmental parameters were recorded with unprecedented accuracy and frequency over a full annual cycle in the Central Arctic Ocean, says Phys.org.

They have now published three overview articles on the MOSAiC atmosphere, snow and sea ice, and ocean programs in the journal Elementa, highlighting the importance of examining all components of the climate system together.

These results present the first complete picture of the climate processes in the central Arctic which is warming more than two times as fast as the rest of the planet—processes which affect weather and climate worldwide.

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An Outburst of Noctilucent Clouds

Posted: January 27, 2022 by oldbrew in atmosphere, Clouds, volcanos

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Possible volcanic origin of these NLCs?

Spaceweather.com

Jan. 25, 2022: On Jan 24th, skies above Argentina suddenly filled with noctilucent clouds (NLCs). A video camera in Rio Gallegos (Patagonia) captured the outburst:

“What a surprise!” says Gerd Baumgarten of Germany’s Leibniz Institute of Atmospheric Physics, who operates this remote camera to minotor southern skies for unusual events. “We haven’t seen NLCs all year. Now, suddenly, they are very bright.”

NLCs are Earth’s highest clouds. They form when wisps of water vapor rise up from the poles to the edge of space. Water crystallizing around specks of meteor dust create the electric-blue structures. NLCs are, literally, frosted meteor smoke.

Normally at this time of year, NLCs are confined inside the Antarctic Circle. So it is a surprise to see them bursting out to mid-southern latitudes; Rio Gallegos is at 51.6oS.

To confirm that these are truly NLCs, Natalie Kaifler of the German Aerospace Center (DLR)…

View original post 96 more words

Credit: NASA

H/T Tallbloke
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By Dr. Rudolph Kalveks — As the media, politicians and climate activists continue to circulate hysterical hot air from the Cop26 conference, the topic of climate change or anthropogenic global warming (AGW) has become an emotional one, increasingly detached from the thoughtful and meticulous process of theory development, calculation and observation that is supposed to characterise scientific endeavour.

It may come as a surprise to some that “The Science”, as expounded in the IPCC Summaries for Policymakers that inform conference participants, is not uncritically accepted by all scientists in the field, and that widely different views are held by a substantial cadre of experienced and eminent researchers.

Moreover, a multitude of peer-reviewed papers contradict many aspects of the IPCC’s alarmist narrative.

Furthermore, a coherent theory about the impact of changes in greenhouse gases (GHGs) is starting to emerge, one that is built up from the underlying physics, rather than extracted from fanciful computer simulations.

My aim here is to highlight some of the relevant papers and to inform any motivated layman who wishes to explore outside the dogmatic strictures of the mainstream narrative.

Let us start with an irrefutable example of the inability of climate models (general circulation models, GCMs) to provide meaningful projections.

Continued here.

Credit: Institute of Physics

This looks like progress, although more research will be needed to try to better understand how the relevant effects work in practice.
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A new study published in Nature Scientific Reports by researchers at the Danish National Space Institute at the Technical University of Denmark (DTU) and The Hebrew University of Jerusalem suggests that the Sun’s activity in screening cosmic rays affects clouds and, ultimately, the Earth’s energy budget with concomitant climatic effects, says David Whitehouse @ NetZeroWatch.

This research, by Henrik Svensmark, Jacob Svensmark, Martin Bødker Enghoff, and Nir Shaviv supports 25 years of discoveries that point to a significant role for cosmic rays in climate change.

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Halfway through this article we see the study’s findings were made ‘where increases in sea surface temperatures have been recorded because of the reversal of a climatic condition called the Pacific Decadal Oscillation, with likely connections to global climate change’. So the PDO has changed, which it regularly will do as its name (‘decadal’) indicates, and they want to tie the consequences to humans? That seems to be implied, although left vague by the usual catch-all term ‘climate change’.
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WASHINGTON—Warming ocean waters have caused a drop in the brightness of the Earth, according to a new study, says Eurekalert.

Researchers used decades of measurements of earthshine — the light reflected from Earth that illuminates the surface of the Moon to find that there has been a significant drop in Earth’s reflectance over the past two decades.

The Earth is now reflecting about half a watt less light per square meter than it was 20 years ago, with most of the drop occurring in the last three years of earthshine data, according to the new study in the AGU journal Geophysical Research Letters, which publishes high-impact, short-format reports with immediate implications spanning all Earth and space sciences.

That’s the equivalent of 0.5% decrease in the Earth’s reflectance. Earth reflects about 30% of the sunlight that shines on it.

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Solar power: Busting the problem of cloud cover?

Posted: September 18, 2021 by oldbrew in Clouds, Energy
Tags: ,

MIT_solar

Image credit: MIT

Of course ‘busting the problem’ of zero nighttime output isn’t going to happen. Vague references to ‘other sources’ of power attempt to gloss over such glaring issues.
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The downside to solar power is that it’s not always sunny and so grid operators have to compensate for energy drops by bringing alternative generation sources online, says TechXplore. [Talkshop comment – every time clouds appear?].

New research in the International Journal of Powertrains, looks at how short-term forecast of sunshine using satellite images could offer one tool to help power companies maintain a steady supply.

A. Shobana Devi of the Sathyabama Institute of Science and Technology, in Chennai, India and colleagues explain how solar irradiance forecasting currently represents a major challenge to companies hoping to integrate solar energy resources into the existing structures of energy supply.

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An IPCC scientist on twitter alerted me to this animation created by Chris Rentsch which analyses the data from the AIRS satellite measuring outgoing longwave radiation.

Here’s a still from the end of the video sequence.

As we can see, by 2019, there is a decrease in OLR at the wavelengths absorbed by CO2 (13-15um) as its atmospheric fraction increases. But we can also see that there is a much bigger increase in OLR at the wavelengths within the ‘atmospheric window’ (10-13um) where it isn’t absorbed by any atmospheric gases.

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