Archive for the ‘research’ Category

Field lines of the bar magnet [image credit: brilliant.org]


A magnetic field line is more a trajectory than an actual entity, despite being discussed as though it really exists. But they are ‘found’ in space just as they are in bar magnets.

New research describes striking similarity of laboratory research findings with observations of the four-satellite Magnetospheric Multiscale Mission that studies magnetic reconnection in space, reports ScienceDaily.

As on Earth, so in space.

A four-satellite mission that is studying magnetic reconnection — the breaking apart and explosive reconnection of the magnetic field lines in plasma that occurs throughout the universe — has found key aspects of the process in space to be strikingly similar to those found in experiments at the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory (PPPL).

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Arctic sea ice [image credit: cbc.ca]


Yes, it does say ‘slows’. There’s some rather convoluted logic about the present and future of Arctic sea ice going on here. Good luck to readers who think they can unravel it. But NASA does have to concede there’s a winter negative feedback going on, while doing its best to downplay possible consequences so as to keep the usual warming obsessions afloat.

New NASA research has found that increases in the rate at which Arctic sea ice grows in the winter may have partially slowed down the decline of the Arctic sea ice cover.

As temperatures in the Arctic have warmed at double the pace of the rest of the planet, the expanse of frozen seawater that blankets the Arctic Ocean and neighboring seas has shrunk and thinned over the past three decades.

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This may or may not have its uses, but any idea that the whole world could get electricity mainly from the sun and the wind is not credible, with today’s technology at least.

MIT engineers have come up with a conceptual design for a system to store renewable energy, such as solar and wind power, and deliver that energy back into an electric grid on demand, says TechExplore.

The system may be designed to power a small city not just when the sun is up or the wind is high, but around the clock.

The new design stores heat generated by excess electricity from solar or wind power in large tanks of white-hot molten silicon, and then converts the light from the glowing metal back into electricity when it’s needed.

The researchers estimate that such a system would be vastly more affordable than lithium-ion batteries, which have been proposed as a viable, though expensive, method to store renewable energy. They also estimate that the system would cost about half as much as pumped hydroelectric storage—the cheapest form of grid-scale energy storage to date.

“Even if we wanted to run the grid on renewables right now we couldn’t, because you’d need fossil-fueled turbines to make up for the fact that the renewable supply cannot be dispatched on demand,” says Asegun Henry, the Robert N. Noyce Career Development Associate Professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering. “We’re developing a new technology that, if successful, would solve this most important and critical problem in energy and climate change, namely, the storage problem.”

Henry and his colleagues have published their design today in the journal Energy and Environmental Science.

Record temps

The new storage system stems from a project in which the researchers looked for ways to increase the efficiency of a form of renewable energy known as concentrated solar power.

Unlike conventional solar plants that use solar panels to convert light directly into electricity, concentrated solar power requires vast fields of huge mirrors that concentrate sunlight onto a central tower, where the light is converted into heat that is eventually turned into electricity.

“The reason that technology is interesting is, once you do this process of focusing the light to get heat, you can store heat much more cheaply than you can store electricity,” Henry notes.

Concentrated solar plants store solar heat in large tanks filled with molten salt, which is heated to high temperatures of about 1,000 degrees Fahrenheit. When electricity is needed, the hot salt is pumped through a heat exchanger, which transfers the salt’s heat into steam. A turbine then turns that steam into electricity.

“This technology has been around for a while, but the thinking has been that its cost will never get low enough to compete with natural gas,” Henry says. “So there was a push to operate at much higher temperatures, so you could use a more efficient heat engine and get the cost down.”

However, if operators were to heat the salt much beyond current temperatures, the salt would corrode the stainless steel tanks in which it’s stored. So Henry’s team looked for a medium other than salt that might store heat at much higher temperatures.

They initially proposed a liquid metal and eventually settled on silicon—the most abundant metal on Earth, which can withstand incredibly high temperatures of over 4,000 degrees Fahrenheit.

Last year, the team developed a pump that could withstand such blistering heat, and could conceivably pump liquid silicon through a renewable storage system. The pump has the highest heat tolerance on record—a feat that is noted in “The Guiness Book of World Records.”

Since that development, the team has been designing an energy storage system that could incorporate such a high-temperature pump.

Continued here.

Research article: Secular decrease of wind power potential in India associated with warming in the Indian Ocean

Image credit: mirror.co.uk


Ironically, the ungrateful climate responds to attempts to ‘save’ it by offering less reward to its supposed saviours. Unfortunate perhaps, but relying on weather-dependent power always will carry risks.

The warming of the Indian Ocean due to global climate change may be causing a slow decline in India’s wind power potential, according to a study, as Financial Express reports.

India, the third largest emitter of greenhouse gases behind China and the US, is investing billions in wind power and has set the ambitious goal to double its capacity in the next five years, said researchers from the Harvard John A Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS).

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While this may all seem a bit vague, it looks like a step in the right direction.

Historic space weather could help researchers better predict future events and atmospheric cycles, a new study in Space Weather reports.

This finding comes from scientists at the University of Warwick, who tracked space weather in solar cycles for the last half century, reports The Space Reporter.

That then revealed a repeatable pattern in the way space weather activity alters over each solar cycle.

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Image credit: howstuffworks.com


The ancients may even have recorded the supposed ‘Younger Dryas’ comet strike.

Some of the world’s oldest cave paintings have revealed how ancient people had relatively advanced knowledge of astronomy, says Phys.org.

The artworks, at sites across Europe, are not simply depictions of wild animals, as was previously thought. Instead, the animal symbols represent star constellations in the night sky, and are used to represent dates and mark events such as comet strikes, analysis suggests.

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H/T Climate Depot
Allowing for limitations of global sea level data, it seems the endless cries of alarm and scary scenarios are not justifiable at this time.

Climatologist Dr. Judith Curry: Mean global sea level has risen at a slow creep for more than 150 years; since 1900, global mean sea level has risen about 7-8 inches.

The implications of the highest values of projected sea-level rise under future climate change scenarios are profound, with far-reaching socioeconomic and environmental implications.

However, these projections are regarded as deeply uncertain and the highest of these projections strain credulity…

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Ross Ice Shelf, Antarctica


The latest research comes up with a new addition to the list of possible ice age mechanisms.

Earth’s latest ice age may have been caused by changes deep inside the planet, reports ScienceDaily.

Based on evidence from the Pacific Ocean, including the position of the Hawaiian Islands, Rice University geophysicists have determined Earth shifted relative to its spin axis within the past 12 million years, which caused Greenland to move far enough toward the north pole to kick off the ice age that began about 3.2 million years ago.

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Conservation of angular momentum – ice skater


The title says it all. Another in the author’s series of intriguing brain-teasers for followers of climate theory to explore, this time with a particularly topical theme.

1. The Madden Julian Oscillation (MJO)

The Madden Julian Oscillation (MJO) is the dominant form of intra-seasonal (30 to 90 days) atmospheric variability in the Earth’s equatorial regions (Zang 2005). It is characterized by the eastward progression of a large region of enhanced convection and rainfall that is centered upon the Equator.

This region of enhanced precipitation is followed by an equally large region of suppressed convection and rainfall. The precipitation pattern takes about 30 – 60 days to complete one cycle, when seen from a given point along the equator (Madden and Julian 1971, 1972).

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Apparently you’re a ‘climate contrarian’ if you dare to check the claimed results of climate-related studies. The researchers ‘calculated heat based on the amount of oxygen and carbon dioxide rising off the ocean, filling round glass flasks with air collected at research stations around the globe’. But now they admit this ‘novel method’ didn’t work out the way they first thought, having had the error pointed out to them.

Researchers with the University of California, San Diego’s Scripps Institution of Oceanography and Princeton University recently walked back scientific findings published last month that showed oceans have been heating up dramatically faster than previously thought as a result of climate change, reports Phys.org.

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Topographic map of Greenland


Something creating a 19-mile wide dent in the Earth’s surface would clearly have been a major strike. If confirmed it would be the most northerly impact crater on Earth.

What looks to be a large impact crater has been identified beneath the Greenland ice sheet, reports BBC News.

The 31km-wide depression came to light when scientists examined radar images of the island’s bedrock.

Investigations suggest the feature was probably dug out by a 1.5km-wide iron asteroid sometime between about 12,000 and three million years ago.

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Earth and climate – an ongoing controversy


Researchers believe the so-called global warming hiatus ended in 2014 ‘as a new El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO) event was developing’. Whether there’s a struggle between natural cooling and non-natural warming is an open question. So-called internal variability can surely vary either up or down, i.e. warmer or cooler, in any time frame.

Global warming has been attributed to persistent increases in atmospheric greenhouse gases (GHGs), especially in CO2, since 1870, the beginning of the Industrial Revolution, say the researchers.

Nevertheless, the upward trend in global mean surface temperature (GMST) slowed or even paused during the first decade of the twenty-first century, even though CO2 levels continued to rise and reached nearly 400 ppm in 2013.

This episode has typically been termed the global warming hiatus or slowdown in warming. The hiatus is characterized as a near-zero trend over a period.

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The media’s climate change coverage is even worse than we thought. If told aliens were running round the Arctic zapping icebergs with lasers, many of them would be keen to believe it – or at least that’s the impression often given.

A week ago, we were told that climate change was worse than we thought. But the underlying science contains a major error, reports The GWPF.

Independent climate scientist Nicholas Lewis has uncovered a major error in a recent scientific paper that was given blanket coverage in the English-speaking media.

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Iceland’s Katla volcano [image credit: icelandmonitor]


Precision measurements show that sub-glacial volcanoes have been greatly underestimated as an ongoing source of carbon dioxide emissions. When will they re-do the calculations?
H/T Warwick Hughes

Recent research suggests the volume of volcanic CO2 being emitted into the atmosphere is far greater than previously thought, challenging man-made warming, says ClimateChangeDispatch.

The cornerstone principle of the global warming theory, anthropogenic global warming (AGW), is built on the premise that significant increases of modern era human-induced CO2 emissions have acted to unnaturally warm Earth’s atmosphere.

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Layers of Earth’s atmosphere


Some fairly advanced theorising here, but the possibilities look interesting. For example, could ‘resonant trapping’ exist?

Resonating oscillations of a planet’s atmosphere caused by gravitational tides and heating from its star could prevent a planet’s rotation from steadily slowing over time, according to new research by Caleb Scharf, who is the Director of Astrobiology at Columbia University.

His findings suggest that the effect is enhanced for a planet with an atmosphere that has been oxygenated by life, and the resulting ‘atmospheric tides’ could even act as a biosignature, reports Phys.org.

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Last Wednesday I attended the talk by Professor Valentina Zharkova hosted by the GWPF in London. She delivered a superb lecture including news of new work improving her model by including quadrupole magnetic parameters. In the Q & A session that followed, I got the opportunity to point up the connection between her model output and Rick Salvadors.

zharkova salvador models

I got a very positive response, including an invitation to collaborate on further work. We discussed this further over dinner, when I gave her a printed copy of Rick’s 2013 PRP paper.

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This report from the WHO ought to be hard for wind power promoters and their ideology-bound supporters to ignore.

STOP THESE THINGS

The World Health Organization’s declaration that wind turbine noise is a serious health hazard, is a liability bombshell for developers and governments, alike.

No longer can wind power outfits and those that make a living running propaganda for them claim that ‘there’s nothing to see here, move on.’ The wind industry’s victims – mocked and denigrated for years – have been vindicated. Now comes the vengeance. Litigation is already on foot in Victoria, with more claims to follow.

The significance of the WHO’s new noise guidelines hasn’t been lost on STT Champions Alan Jones and Liberal MP, Craig Kelly.

Liberal MP Craig Kelly on renewables and the Paris agreement
2GB
Alan Jones and Craig Kelly
19 October 2018

Alan Jones: Look, this Wentworth stuff, seriously. Dave Sharma is an outstanding candidate, but you’ve got Kerryn Phelps. She has a profile. They’re saying in Wentworth, climate change is an issue. If…

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Even today, more than eighty percent of our ocean is unmapped, unobserved, and unexplored. How many more hidden volcanoes may remain to be discovered?

The find offers a glimpse into a previously unknown marine ecosystem — and spotlights just how little we know about the seafloor, says Euronews.

While mapping the seafloor some 250 miles off the coast of the Australian island of Tasmania, scientists recently discovered what’s being called a “volcanic lost world” deep underwater.

The chain of volcanic seamounts — huge undersea mountains that loom as tall as 9,800 feet, or more than six times taller than the Empire State Building — offer a glimpse into a previously unknown ocean ecosystem.

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Fine summer weather [image credit: BBC]


A rooftop installation is needed, but low running costs are claimed.

Engineers from two American universities developed a kind of natural air conditioner with almost no consumption of electricity, reports Xinhuanet News.

The study published on Friday in the journal Joule described the innovative water-cooling system capable of providing continuous day-and-night radiative cooling for structures.

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Grand Aletsch Glacier, Switzerland [Image credit: Wikipedia]


It’s not the conclusion some might be expecting…

Analysis of ice cores delivers continuous data for the first time on industrial soot from 1740 to today, reports HeritageDaily.

In the first half of the 19th century, a series of large volcanic eruptions in the tropics led to a temporary global cooling of Earth’s climate.

It was a natural process that caused Alpine glaciers to grow and subsequently recede again during the final phase of the so-called Little Ice Age.

This has now been proven by PSI researchers, on the basis of ice cores.

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