## Only One Way to Test

Although my output on the greenhouse topic has been greatly reduced, the reason is because I have settled at the end-point of the approaches for analysis.  There is a single way to test for a radiative greenhouse effect, and it is a direct test which can be performed either with fundamental mathematics, or empirically.  Actually the question of the empirical vs. purely mathematical approach becomes totally paramount here, and my preference is to say that a purely mathematical proof is possible.

That’s a good question, right?  Are purely mathematical tests of the behaviour of reality possible?  All scientists would of course say no, that empiricism actually drives and is the heart and core of any possible knowledge we may have about reality, and that mathematics only serves our empirical probings, not proves them.  However, then you have that pesky case of Dirac, who discovered antimatter purely by a mathematical proof…albeit a mathematical proof which came from earlier empiricism-based science, so perhaps that’s not a good example after-all.  Then again, empirical tests are proposed based on testing what the mathematics says about the way reality should behave.

The radiative greenhouse effect schematics like we see below of course do use mathematics, but they can’t be said to necessarily use ontological mathematics. Non-ontological, abstract mathematics can be used to make statements which totally contradict empirical reality.

If one were to replace the “input” radiative fluxes in the above diagram with their corresponding temperatures, then the above diagram (from climate science alarm) would say that when you add one object at -18°C to another abject at -18°C, then you get +30°C.  That is, if you take one ice-cube, and combine it with another ice-cube of equal temperature, then you get a higher temperature object in that combination.  With abstract mathematics you can do that just fine, but it is total garbage ontologically because empiricism tells us that reality does not behave that way.  Ontological mathematics also tells us that reality won’t behave that way, but this requires a much, much more advanced form of mathematics that is typically only seen in advanced courses in statistical theory in university physics.

So, it is typically much easier for empiricism to tell us what the ontological properties and behaviour of reality is, than it is for the correct mathematics to tell us.  That being said, although empiricism tells us what happens, it doesn’t tell us why it happens.  In the final analysis, you only get the why from ontological mathematics, in this case from fundamental statistical theory, otherwise called the Laws of Thermodynamics.

The only “why’s” whose answer we are capable of being certain about, in fact the only why’s which provide absolute fundamental knowledge in their answer, are based in mathematics.  Why?  Because when you can reduce some problem, some behaviour, some feature, etc., to the equivalent of 1 + 1 = 1 + 1 = 2, then you have demonstrated something indisputably true, a tautology which is incapable of ever being wrong.  Your feelings can be wrong, your instincts can be wrong, your senses can be wrong, your intuition can be wrong, etc., but 1 + 1 = 1 + 1 = 2 does not partake of a possibility of wrongness – it is permanently true.  Advanced statistical theory, although quite complex, still reduces to such mathematical tautology of 1 + 1 = 2, and we find that reality behaves according to such ontological mathematics in the situations where it applies.

This opens up an interesting new question:  How to distinguish between what would be ontological mathematics, vs. merely abstract or “practical” mathematics?  That question requires its own analysis and it won’t be covered here so that we can get back on topic.

## The Way to Test

The way to test the radiative greenhouse postulate is with what I have come to label a “de-Saussure device”, after the fellow Horace-Bénédict de Saussure, who with Joseph Fourier of Fourier-transform fame, constructed a device to trap solar radiative thermal energy inside internal cavities for the purpose of exploring how high of temperature could be achieved within the entrapment.  I wrote about their results in this paper.

Such a device is simple enough to construct for the empirical test, but it is also simple enough to model with the fundamental heat transfer equations that Joseph Fourier developed with his Fourier transform.  And for anyone who has read Mike Hockney and the foundations of ontological mathematics, you will know that when it comes to questions of utilization of the Fourier transform, we are most assuredly dealing with a question of ontological mathematics.  (And further, if it is a question of ontological mathematics, then whatever the application in question is it must also have something to say about the nature of the soul; the spiritual consequences of the results of the application of the Fourier transform to a de Saussure device and the implications for the greenhouse effect will not be discussed here.)

Very simply, we have short-wave radiation coming into a device, whence the subsequent long-wave radiation is absorbed layer-by-layer.  As in the following diagram:

Figure 1:  Shortwave radiation enters the device passing all layers unimpeded, and is absorbed only at the innermost surface as thermal energy. In between the layers is, ideally, vacuum. Subsequent long-wave radiation is absorbed by the layers.

The layers act as a sort of one-way filter, allowing solar radiation to pass within the device while absorbing the long-wave radiation generated inside.  There would be a transmission cut-off at the frequency where the solar spectrum crosses the expected generated thermal response spectrum, as for example in the case of the solar and terrestrial spectra in the figure below between 104 and 105 Angstroms.

Figure 2: A de Saussure device is a type of short-pass filter, allowing shortwave radiation to pass through the layers within while absorbing long-wave radiation generated inside.

One of the boundary conditions of the device is that the innermost short-wave absorbing surface is insulated on its backside, which thus provides the mathematical boundary condition required in the numerical computation of the diffusion equation for the backside of that short-wave absorbing layer.  All of the other layers temperature responses would of course be computed using the diffusion equation too.

The computation of the diffusion equation is intimately connected with the Fourier Transform…they are essentially the same thing in this application.  That is, the Fourier Transform is the analytic solution to the heat transfer problem, however, how this is computed numerically is via the diffusion equation.

The parts where the Fourier Transform is applicable via the diffusion equation, that is within each layer, is relatively simple to implement; however, as anyone who has done this before knows, the topological behaviour of the solution depends entirely upon the mathematical nature of the boundary conditions at each subsequent surface of each layer.

One can implement mathematical boundary conditions which would correspond with the concept of back-radiation and a radiative greenhouse effect, and one can implement boundary conditions where back-radiation has no further temperature-generating effect.

Either solution when computed in “real-time” appear aesthetically to be possibly perfectly valid, but clearly give very different topological results for their final equilibrium conditions with constant input (at 1000 W/m2 in this case):

Figure 3: A 3-layer de Saussure device at equilibrium with 1000 W/m2 input, with radiative greenhouse effect boundary conditions. The plot is Temperature vs. position. The left-most line is the innermost absorbing layer’s temperature, and the other lines are 3 layers temperatures.

Figure 4: A 3-layer de Saussure device at equilibrium with 1000 W/m2 input, with non-backradiation-heating boundary conditions. The plot is Temperature vs. position. The left-most line is the innermost absorbing layer’s temperature, and the other lines are 3 layers temperatures.

How does one tell which result is the correct one, and thus which mathematical boundary conditions are the correct ones?  The Ontological Mathematical purist would say that it is possible to use mathematics alone to solve which boundary conditions are the correct ones, and thus finally say whether or not there is a fundamental “greenhouse effect” that operates upon radiation.

And it is possible to do so.   Not withstanding that, as discussed in the aforementioned paper, there are empirical results which give the answer already; the problem here however, I have found, is that the experimental conditions of such empirical results can be questioned to such an extent that either side of the debate will willingly write-off their opponent’s assessment of the results.  This has been done to me, and I have done it to others, legitimately.  And I see people presently doing that on other posts on this blog, to no end and never arriving at a final agreed empirical analysis.  That is why I find it best to finally couch the problem in terms of basic ontological mathematics, to see which side conforms to 1 + 1 = 2, and which side does not.  And as I said, it is possible to do this.

I won’t describe the final analysis here because in theory I am writing a paper about it.  But I will say that it seems as though this scenario presents a test of ontological mathematics itself, in that it seems as though mind is presenting itself in the behaviour of the mathematical boundary conditions of the correct solution.  An experiment that demonstrates mind operating at the fundamental basis of reality – and the interaction of photons with matter and the subsequent thermal response of matter is indeed such a scenario, involving even the mind-matter Fourier transform itself – is in my mind a minor “holy grail” of ontological mathematical research.  It’s kind of a big deal.  That being said, I got the impression that they hated that I was writing about all that in this fashion.  I didn’t mean it, and have no ulterior motives: I am simply pursuing what I am finding within the context of what I have come to learn and know.

So I’ll try finishing the paper.  Well, really I just need to make sure it’s all correct, that the model is running as it should and that the mathematics and logic is all correct; I’ve been running the models over and over again for a year now, trying to see if I find myself coming to a different conclusion, trying to see if there are any other ways to write the code and the boundary conditions, etc.  I am getting near ready to finish my work on greenhouse stuff and finally be done with it, and if things stand as it seems they are as I have discussed here, it will be for me a satisfying finish, even if no one else gives a hoot.

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### 76 Responses to The Radiative Greenhouse Effect & Ontological Mathematics

1. John Francis says:

I hope you build it Joe

2. jerry krause says:

Hi Joe,

In a rough draft by a unknown author (UA) I read: “Suomi, S. O. Staley, and P. M. Kuhn [ ] designed a light and inexpensive net radiometer (Fig) which could be balloon-borne and gave its detailed theory, which is simply an analysis of the energy balance at the two absorbing-emitting (a-e) surfaces of the instrument.”

The title of their article was “A Direct Measurement of Infrared Radiation Divergence to 160 mb”. The article is found in the Quarterly Journal of the Royal Meteorological Society, vol. 84, No. 360, Apr. 1958, pp. 134-141.

UA also wrote: “It is clear that a major objective of radiometer design is to thermally isolate, except radiatively, as much as possible the detector (the a-e surface) from the remainder of the instrument and its environment.”

As I learn more about commercial radiometers it seems the design objective, to thermally isolate except radiatively, is not entirely the case. For it seems the commercial radiometers are constructed of solid materials of significant density so the thermal conductivity of these dense materials cannot be disregarded was the case in the light net radiometer which could be balloon-borne. Styrofoam was not a commercial product when Suomi etal constructed their net radiometer so you can read how they designed and constructed their light net radiometer.

I have constructed a radiometer (one-half of the net radiometer) using 1/2in extruded Styrofoam sheets as the structural material and a food-grade digital probe thermometer beneath the aluminum foil (painted dull black) absorbing-emitting (a-e) surface which is separated from the atmosphere by two polyethylene films spaced 1/2in apart with the nearest film 1/2in from the a-e surface.

The net radiometer was intended to be used during the night but my radiometer can be used 24hrs of the day to observe whatever downward radiation there was being absorbed by the a-e surface. For, given apparently clear sky condition, the temperature observed beneath the a-e surface quickly becomes a ‘steady-state’ temperature because of the low thermal ‘inertia’ of this light radiometer.

Near the summer solstice near midday at 45N latitude and an elevation of about 500 feet, I have observed temperatures beneath the a-e surface in excess of 100C when the radiometer was pointed directly toward the sun. And on one occasion I discovered the extruded Styrofoam beneath the a-e had melted, which it had not when I had previously observed the temperatures in excess of 100C. But this melting does not establish much because Dow Chemical states that the melting point of their extruded Styrofoam can range from 90C to 130C.

However, the observed fact of the temperatures in excess of 100C seems significant because we know that the earth’s atmosphere scatters, or absorbs, a significant portion of the shorter wavelengths of solar radiation which is not scattered or absorbed in the case of the solar radiation which is intercepted by the surface of the moon. Hence, it seems we can reasonably conclude that nothing ‘unknown’ is limiting the solar radiation that reaches the earth’s surface when the atmosphere appears to be cloudless. And it seems reasonable to reason that the a-e surface which is absorbing this radiation is also emitting this radiation at longer (than those of the solar radiation) wavelengths back toward space because of the ‘steady state’ temperature being observed beneath that a-e surface.

Anyone with moderate motivation and practical skills can construct this simple radiometer and observe what can be simply observed with it, both day and night. And what is observed warrants a detailed explanation of what is actually being observed. But first the observation needs to be made.

Have a good day, Jerry

3. Tom says:

I give a lot of hoots Joe. Thanks for your insight and your tireless adherence to incontrovertible fundamental principles and laws.

4. catweazle666 says:

Fascinating, Joe.

Your Fig. 1 is the most succinct description of the problem I have ever come across.

Keep it up!

5. carlallen says:

“Such a device is simple enough to construct for the empirical test, but it is also simple enough to model with the fundamental heat transfer equations that Joseph Fourier developed with his Fourier transform.”

I once attempted to build a “de-Saussure device” and in doing so gained valuable insight into its thermodynamic workings, which are easily overlooked if you are only approaching it from a theoretical point of view.

It appears that your attempt to explain the thermodynamics of a “de-Saussure device” is focused on the purely radiative component of heat transfer within the device and as such presents the reader with a purely hypothetical analysis of an imaginary device. Isn’t the purpose of doing actual, empirical experimentation to rein in the imagination and to ground mathematical hypotheticals in physical reality?

If I understand you correctly, the device that you describe is thermally isolated from its surroundings, contains a virtual vacuum between its several plates of glass that are 100% transparent to sunlight while being 100% opaque to IR radiation. I assure you, far from being “simple enough to construct”, such a device is impossible to construct. 1) no such glass exists, 2) achieving a virtual vacuum within such a device is far from simple and 3) thermally isolating such a device from its surroundings, i.e., the atmosphere in which it is engulfed, is impossible.

The main problem that I had with building a device whose temperature at the base would reach the theoretical high that direct sunlight at noonday should be able to cause was not being able to adequately insulate the box. Indeed, even in thermodynamic analyses of real greenhouses people invariably overlook the R-value of its walls and ceiling as a contributing factor and suggest that greenhouses are warmer on the inside than on the outside at mid-day under clear skies purely because they inhibit convection.

Another thing that your thought experiment overlooks is the fact that glass is not 100% transparent to sunlight since sunlight carries a lot of infrared energy. Set a piece of glass up against a south-facing wall that 1) is protected from the wind and 2) receives direct sunlight at noon. By 1:00PM the glass will be too hot to touch due to the sunlight that it has absorbed. Then touch the wall behind the glass and you will discover that this clear plate of glass has been “shading” the wall, which will be significantly cooler than the glass.

Thus, even the mental construct of the “de-Saussure device” that is the presumed bases of your thought experiment is out of sync with the thermodynamic properties of real things.

“Shortwave radiation enters the device passing all layers unimpeded, and is absorbed only at the innermost surface as thermal energy. In between the layers is, ideally, vacuum. Subsequent long-wave radiation is absorbed by the layers. The layers act as a sort of one-way filter, allowing solar radiation to pass within the device while absorbing the long-wave radiation generated inside.”

This just happens to be the false mental construct of the atmosphere that is at the basis of the “greenhouse effect” hypothesis in the first place. Why perpetuate it by making it the basis of yet another scientific paper?

Carl

6. Thanks John, Tom.

Cat: Figure 1 is actually from the department of atmospheric sciences at Harvard University. I was taught the same thing in my own undergrad. It is literally flat-Earth science.

7. Hi Carl,

Yes so by way of analogy, I would say that what you have explained there with all of those empirical problems is like a tangled ball of yarn. Each yarn thread is its own effect but they’re all tangled together. The point of focusing exclusively on the radiative part is to pull that radiative yarn out of the tangle and focus on it all by itself, to see what effect it, by itself, has on the system; all of the effects are superimposed on each other so if you can pull one effect out by itself, then you can see what effect it must have on the superposition…on the tangle. All of the empirical problems you explain is precisely why I said that it makes it simpler to go to a fundamental model based on ontological, correct mathematics of basic theory, since it is the radiative effect, not all of the other effects, that we are interested in. Of course we wish to use the correct mathematics, not some silly mathematics where two equal temperature phenomena combine to create higher temperature!

For example, the radiative effect in a de Saussure device with 3 layers says that, under backradiation heating scenario, the interior should reach, say, 500 Celsius. So, that is a huge superimposition effect when combined with all of the other things going on. However, even with non-perfect insulation, you might not get up to the 500 Celsius, but you should darn well get above the solar insolation temperature. So, if you find that the radiative greenhouse effect scenario predicts such high temperature, but you still find temperatures only corresponding to the solar insolation, then you know that the radiative greenhouse effect is not actually operating on the system.

Additionally, my perspective was that if we can look at the radiative effect alone, there may be a way to examine whether a backradiation greenhouse effect violates any mathematical necessities of the system, such as conservation of energy; if one can show that from the mathematics, then it shows that the greenhouse effect is impossible a-priori, and then it would explain the empirical result of never finding any temperature approaching 500 Celsius.

So yes, the empirical problems are exactly why it is useful to reduce the system to a perfect mathematical system based on the fundamental, and true, ontological, equations of energy. Once you have that, then you know that the empirical result will be not quite as precise as this result, but if the effect you’re looking for is huge, then it will still be identifiable. And in this case the supposed backradiation effect is indeed quite huge. With the empirical test, of course you need to factor in the emissivity & absorptivity of the glass, the absorptivity of the back-surface, the non-ideal insulation, etc.

8. Yes Jerry, direct solar insolation on the surface is capable of generating, and does generate, very high temperatures such as you measured. Only with such high “temperature forcing” from sunlight can the planet sustain liquid water, and the weather; else, with the supposed -18C input from the Sun as flat-Earth climate alarm uses, there would be no liquid water. Reality operates in a totally different phase-space than that modeled by climate alarm science’s Figure 1.

9. Chic Bowdrie says:

“This just happens to be the false mental construct of the atmosphere that is at the basis of the “greenhouse effect” hypothesis in the first place. Why perpetuate it by making it the basis of yet another scientific paper?”

Despite Joe’s reply, I still think that what Carl says is correct. Joe is virtuous in challenging the radiative component of the model system. However, even if backradiation boundary conditions apply, that doesn’t prove that IR-active gases are solely responsible for 33 degrees of warming.

My problem is with the term “greenhouse effect” and multiple understandings of the term. The usual retort is that greenhouse terminology is too ingrained in the fabric of climate science jargon to extricate it. I would argue that all true-seekers should agree to protest the “false mental construct” by using alternate language and providing appropriate scientific explanations. Use IR-active gases for GHGs and point out ad nauseum that greenhouses inhibit convection and should not be used to analogize the atmosphere. An atmosphere without IR-active gases would still make surface temperatures warmer, on average, than they would otherwise be, albeit more variable.
I’ll be interested in Joe’s forthcoming paper for its mathematical value, but I’d be more interested in solutions of the differential equations combining radiation and convection. Joe makes a tremendous contribution by showing how much a distortion the diagram (from climate science alarm) is from his more realistic rotating planet model. The next step is to show how disengenuous it is to model the atmosphere with static layers when those layers are continuously elevated and distorted by evaporation and advection.

10. jerry krause says:

Hi Joe,

You stated: “Actually the question of the empirical vs. purely mathematical approach becomes totally paramount here, and my preference is to say that a purely mathematical proof is possible.”

Einstein is said to have stated: “No amount of experimentation can ever prove me right; a single experiment can prove me wrong.” One of the first things that Richard Feynman taught first year physic students at Caltech in 1961 was: “The principle of science, the definition, almost, is the following: The test of all knowledge is experiment. Experiment is the sole judge of scientific “truth.”’ (The Feynman Lectures on Physics pp1-1)

Carl reported what he had learned from an experiment. I reported what I had learned from an experiment. I closed my previous comments: “And what is observed warrants a careful explanation of what is actually being observed. But first the observation needs to be made.” And given your recent comments, it seems it needs to be repeated.

Have a good day, Jerry

11. “The test of all knowledge is experiment. Experiment is the sole judge of scientific “truth.””

Yes, and that is why science can not arrive at any final ultimate truth…and why it denies that such a thing is even possible. Hence, why we need something else, as in my last post: https://climateofsophistry.com/2016/06/02/lpac-vs-hockney/

via

http://www.amazon.com/Mike-Hockney/e/B004KHR7DC

12. “And what is observed warrants a careful explanation of what is actually being observed.”

Yes, and the explanation comes from the ontological behaviour of mathematics; only mathematics provides the explanation.

13. jerry krause says:

Hi Joe,

Relative to what you have written I have been considering. For a long time I have been aware that chemists approach their physical science quite differently than physicists approach their physical science. I believe we, you and I, can agree that Galileo’s book ‘paved’ the road which led to what might be termed modern science. However, this book, as translated to the English language by Crew and de Salvio, was never assigned as a textbook to be read by any of my chemistry or physics professors. And I, as a chemistry instructor, never assigned it as a textbook to be read by my students. But near the end of my retirement as a chemistry instructor, I did finally read it. However, it has taken decades for what I read to begin to sink into my consciousness. And maybe you will conclude that it still has not.

As I first read it I began to ask the question: What are these two new sciences? For the dialogues of the first two days seemed, to me, to be about material science (chemistry?). And the dialogues of the third and fourth days were clearly stated to be about motion (physics without any question). Now we historically know that the currently accept ideas of motion at that time were wrong. Just as we know certain accepted Greek ideas about matter were wrong.

I have seldom (actually never) read that Galileo considered matter to be atomistic or that he might have been an alchemist. But this is somewhat documented by a comment made by the translators (Crew and de Salvio) whose work was published in 1914. For they translated: “Seeing that water has less firmness [consistenza] than the finest of powder, in fact no consistence whatever, we may, it seems to me, very reasonably conclude that the smallest particles into which it can be resolved are quite different from finite and divisible particles; indeed the only difference I am able to discover is that the former are indivisible. The exquisite transparency of water also favors this view; for the most transparent crystal when broken and ground and reduced to powder loses its transparency; the finer the grinding the greater the loss; but in the case of water where the attrition is of the highest degree we have extreme transparency. Gold and silver when pulverized with acids [acque forti] more finely than is possible with any file still remains powders,* and do not become fluids until the finest particles [gl’ indivisibili] of fire or of the rays of the sun dissolve them, as I think, into their ultimate, indivisible, and infinitely small components.” “*It is not clear what Galileo here means by saying that gold and silver when treated with acids still remain powders. [Trans.]”

Alchemist were a group of people (primarily men) who were trying to make gold and silver from much less expensive materials. And based upon what we now know, they appeared to be very naïve (a nice way of saying they were stupid). However, what seems to be overlooked is that for nearly two thousand years it had been accepted knowledge that the four elementary forms of matter were earth, water, air, and fire. Hence, if these four elements were combined in the right way, one should be able to make gold and silver. It seems that the translators did not know that [acque forti] acid was aqua regia. A solution of hydrochloric acid and nitric acid which is capable of dissolving gold and silver.

What Galileo described is now termed a gold sol or silver sol. And if you google ‘gold sol’ you will find: “Known, or at least used (perhaps proceeding by accident without much understanding of the process) since ancient times, the synthesis of colloidal gold was crucial to the 4th-century Lycurgus Cup, which changes color depending on the location of light source.[7](Wikipedia) It is true that this ancient process was discovered without much understanding, but is should not be described as an accident.

For, aqua regia (my Word spell checker does not know how to spell regia) is required to dissolve the gold as the first step in synthesizing the colloidal gold. And neither hydrochloric acid nor nitric acid occur naturally in a concentrated form. So these ancient alchemists, in a way, did accidently synthesize concentrated hydrochloric acid and nitric acid and did accidently dissolve gold with the mixture now known as aqua regia as the first step in preparing a gold sol. But it was no accident that these alchemists were purposefully experimenting in their efforts to ‘understand’ gold as to possibly learn how they might ‘synthesize’ gold.

Clearly, Galileo was knowledgeable about what the ancient alchemists had done, if he was not an alchemist himself. And it is known that Newton and other members of the Royal Society were active alchemists and therefore quite familiar with the experimental method of learning.

What you seem to not grasp is that there are two ‘forms’ (for lack of a better word) of understanding: qualitative and quantitative. Now, Galileo recognized the importance of moving from a qualitative understanding to a quantitative understanding if possible. For a quote attributed to him is: “Measure what is measurable and make measureable what is not so.” Which seems to be the purpose of quantitative experimentation.

However, Newton, on the last page of The Principia, wrote: “And to us it is enough that gravity does really exist, and act according to the laws which we have explained, and abundantly serves to account for all the motions of the celestial bodies, and of our sea.” Now, we still know that the motions of the sea (tides I understand) cannot be quantitatively predicted from a quantitative theory. But I qualitatively understand the factors involved which make a theoretical quantitative prediction impossible.

Carl enumerated actual factors which make your absolute quantitative mathematical reasoning impossible.

Have a good day, Jerry

14. Carl: What were the results you found? How many layers did you have?

15. jerry krause says:

Hi Joe,

You asked Carl: “What were the results you found?”

Carl had written: “Another thing that your thought experiment overlooks is the fact that glass is not 100% transparent to sunlight since sunlight carries a lot of infrared energy. Set a piece of glass up against a south-facing wall that 1) is protected from the wind and 2) receives direct sunlight at noon. By 1:00PM the glass will be too hot to touch due to the sunlight that it has absorbed. Then touch the wall behind the glass and you will discover that this clear plate of glass has been “shading” the wall, which will be significantly cooler than the glass.”

When I took physics many of the ‘homework’ problems that I was given to solve stated that I should assume frictionless surfaces and bearings and massless pulleys. From this I conclude that physics majors maybe have not learned to reason about real world problems.

In his book about Richard Feynman titled Genius, James Gleick wrote (in a section titled All His Knowledge): “But a part of him still preferred to give fundamental a different definition. “What we are talking about is real and at hand: Nature,” he wrote to a correspondent in India, who had, he thought, spent too much time reading about esoteric phenomena. “Learn by trying to understand simple things in terms of other ideas—always honestly and directly. What keeps the clouds up, why can’t I see stars in the daytime, why do colors appear on oily water, what makes the lines on the surface of water being poured from a pitcher, why does a hanging lamp swing back and forth—and all the innumerable little things you see all around you. Then when you have learned what an explanation really is, you can then go on to more subtle questions.”

You seemed to not notice the little thing which Carl had clearly and simply described. I do not know if Carl can explain in simple detail what he described. But I know that this little thing must be explained before one tries to answer more subtle questions.

Have a good day, Jerry

16. Well Jerry it is almost as though you believe that empirical findings have nothing to do with theoretical considerations, and that theoretical considerations have nothing to do with empirical findings. Discussing the empirical findings of course help constrain the many theoretical concerns outlined by Carl. And the main theoretical concern of backradiation heating of course establishes the expectations for the empirical findings. That’s why Carl and I have worked so well together on this issue in the past and why we each continue to.

17. jerry krause says:

Hi Joe,

In your response to my comments, I could not find a proposed explanation of the little thing which Carl had brought to your attention. Of course, you are free be critical of me because I am, admittedly, no one with your accomplishments. But I consider that your accomplishments do not begin to approach those of Feynman.

However, Einstein is said to have stated: “The only source of knowledge is experience.” And I believe I might have had experiences that you may not have had. For during my freshman year as a chemistry major, the chemistry department offered a couple of Saturday workshops on working with glass tubing. For chemists at that time routinely constructed the glass equipment they needed in their experimentation.

So, I know by experience that glass has a very low thermal conductivity. I could hold a piece of tubing within a couple of inches of where it was being heated with a gas flame and until it was so soften that I could remove it from the flame and smoothly bend it without constricting the glass at the inside of the bend. Try heating a similar copper tubing and holding it within a couple inches of where it was being heated with a gas flame and experience the difference due to the difference in these two materials’ thermal conductivities. So one factor needed to explain the case observed by Carl is that glass has a low thermal conductivity.

Another factor is a less known ‘phenomenon or property’ of matter which is a good absorber is a good reflector. So less known that for a while I did not know where I had learned (been taught) this. However, this time my memory did not fail me.

In my graduate program physics was a first minor. So I took a course in theoretical physics and the textbook for it was Introduction to Theoretical Physics—Classical Mechanics and Electrodynamics and the author was Roald K. Wangsness. I am sure you can believe I understood little of the mathematical reasoning taught in this book. However, in Section 29 (Reflection and refraction of plane waves) I read (pp 309): “In other words, waves which are most strongly absorbed are very strongly reflected. A good example is afforded by the optical properties of thin sheets of gold. They appear yellowish by reflection; this means that, in the originally white light transmitted through the sheets, the yellow is practically all absorbed. As a result, the transmitted light appears greenish or bluish.” This consequence of the theoretical considerations I could understand. However, I recognize gold is a metal and a good conductor and possibly not like the nonconductors glass or water.

So I turned to The Feynman Lectures on Physics and found what I was sure I had read long ago. Again, I understood nothing of the mathematical discussions but I can understand words. On pp33-11 Vol II I read: “Metals do not reflect 100 percent, but many do reflect visible light very well. In other words, the imaginary part to their indexes is very large. But we have seen that a large imaginary part of the index means a strong absorption. So there is a general rule that if any material gets to be a very good absorber at any frequency, the waves are strongly reflected at the surface and very little gets inside to be absorbed. You can see this effect with strong dyes. Pure crystals of the strongest dyes have a “metallic” shine. Probably you have noticed that at the edge of a bottle of purple ink the dried dye will give a golden metallic reflection, or that dried red ink will sometimes give a greenish metallic reflection. Red ink absorbs out the greens of transmitted light, so if the ink is very concentrated, it will exhibit a strong surface reflection for the frequencies of green light.

“You can easily show this effect by coating a glass plate with red ink and letting if dry. If you direct a beam of white light at the back of the plate, as shown, there will be a transmitted beam of red light and a reflected beam of green light.”

Words which should not be overlooked are “thin sheets” and “very little gets inside to be absorbed”. For what is absorbed is absorbed in a very, very shallow surface layer of the absorbing matter. Maybe it should be mentioned that a very smooth ‘clean’ layer of the absorbing matter is a requirement both authors acknowledge.

Hence, who claims that I ignore theoretical claims I do not understand, if the source of the theoretical claim seems qualified. However, better is to observe a demonstration (empirical evidence) of the theoretical claim.

So, given this information by two professors of physics, do you still consider that water surfaces really have a quite low albedo?

Have a good day, Jerry

18. Yes Jerry I usually use the engineeringtoolbox site to get physical material properties like thermal conductivity; that one has an effect on the time constant in the PDE.

The albedo for water can be found with an Internet search; the oceans are quite dark as seen from space for example.

Hope that helps you.

19. catweazle666 says:

Concerning the albedo of water, with respect to the Earth, would there not be increased reflection at grazing angles at high latitudes, hence a reduction in actual warming in polar waters even if the ice caps melted?

20. Yes definitely I think the wiki page on albedo shows just such a plot for water.

21. I’m sorry Jerry but you continue to miss the point and to overstate things. So let me repeat: Theory is relevant to empiricism. And empiricism is relevant to theory. If the mathematics tells you that a single effect is going to dominate all of the other empirical factors, and if all of those other empirical factors are then reduced as much as possible in their influence, then this is how science proceeds.

You seem to think that it is impossible to apply absolute quantitative mathematical reasoning to empiricism. You couldn’t possibly be any more incorrect about that. You are directly stating that it is impossible to apply reasoning and mathematics to empiricism, in general. Science would be impossible if that were so.

Carl enumerated factors which influence the experiment and which are present in the mathematical reasoning; he did not say that the empirical factors make their analysis impossible. Be careful with what you infer.

Absolute mathematical reasoning is what guides empiricism and is the only thing that explains its results. Just because something is complicated, does not mean that it is not founded in mathematical physics and that it is not analyzable both empirically and mathematically.

The task is to single out the effect you want from all of the other effects, and mathematical analysis tells you what effect should remain, and empiricism tells you if it does or not; the mathematical analysis to single out the effect you want also tells you how to mitigate the impact of all of the other effects, as in using proper insulation, for example.

I have worked in high-vacuum space-simulation laboratories with custom-made bandpass light filters, and the de Saussure device is something which would be quite easy to build and test in such an environment. But going to that length isn’t even necessary, as de Saussure and R.W. Wood and others have already given demonstrations; one simply needs to ensure that the other empirical factors are sufficiently constrained, and known.

Here is a site with some interesting thoughts on alchemy: http://www.alchemy.ws/

22. jerry krause says:

Joe, only one comment. You stated: “You seem to think that it is impossible to apply absolute quantitative mathematical reasoning to empiricism.” Could you quote what I wrote that led you to think this.

Have a good day, Jerry

23. Jerry: “Carl enumerated actual factors which make your absolute quantitative mathematical reasoning impossible.”

The de Saussure device is not an impossible system to test, either empirically or mathematically, nor is it impossible to apply pure mathematical physics reasoning to it. The de Saussure device is an extremely simple and classical system, just the kind which is amenable to basic mathematical analysis and empiricism. I don’t think that Carl intended what you say to be the absolute meaning of his comment. The system is quite amenable to experiment and maths. To think that a system like this isn’t amenable to mathematics, as you say, then one must think that other equally-simple insulative systems aren’t, which obviously are.

The point is, your statement is quite off the mark. Carl would not say that mathematical reasoning, physics, is impossible to apply to the system. That is exactly what he was doing.

And as I pointed out in the OP, the empirical complexities are precisely why mathematical analysis is such a help for understanding this system and for the question of the radiative greenhouse effect.

24. jerry krause says:

Joe, you are right, I made a mistake: the word impossible should have been meaningless.

While my graduate major was physical chemistry, my specialty was solid state chemistry. We had two solid state professors and about eight grad students in our group while across the parking lot was a solid state physicist with no grad student. So, he joined our seminar group. Finally it was his turn to give a seminar and at the end of the seminar the fur began flying between the chemistry professors and the physicists professor. The issue was that the system he described was claimed to be unrealistic by the chemists. The result of this exchange was that the solid state physicist never came to our seminars again.

Then I have had opportunity to interview at two four-colleges for an assistant professor position in chemistry. Because of the somewhat close relationship between solid state chemistry and solid state physics, the chairmans of both chemistry departments evidently felt an obligation to let the heads of the physics department to interview me. Evidently because both chemistry chairmans warned me that there was not a good working relationship between the two departments before sending me to the interview with the physicists.

And I know that even in chemistry at the Nobel Prize level there has been a serious disagreement (feud) between a chemistry experimentalist and a group chemistry theorists. Again, the theorists were proposing something which the experimentalist thought to be unrealistic and the experimentalist performed several experiments which demonstrated that certain results could be achieved more ‘practically’. However, this eventual Nobel Prize Winner could not get his research results published in respected journals. So it seems the apparent conflict is between theorists and experimentalists and not necessarily between chemists and physicists.

Have a good day, Jerry

25. Dear Jerry,

Personal anecdotes do not refute or remove the role of mathematics in physics, or chemistry.

Please try to understand the OP in the context of physics and applied mathematics, and the scientific method.

26. Carl, you said:

Thus, even the mental construct of the “de-Saussure device” that is the presumed bases of your thought experiment is out of sync with the thermodynamic properties of real things.

“Shortwave radiation enters the device passing all layers unimpeded, and is absorbed only at the innermost surface as thermal energy. In between the layers is, ideally, vacuum. Subsequent long-wave radiation is absorbed by the layers. The layers act as a sort of one-way filter, allowing solar radiation to pass within the device while absorbing the long-wave radiation generated inside.”

This just happens to be the false mental construct of the atmosphere that is at the basis of the “greenhouse effect” hypothesis in the first place. Why perpetuate it by making it the basis of yet another scientific paper?

The main function of the de Saussure device is the very definition of the radiative greenhouse effect. Of course in practice there are experimental considerations to account for, but these do not make the concept impossible, impractical, or false. Empiricism is of course all about accounting for all relevant experimental factors, and this can be done.

Yes, the alarmists do indeed have a false mental construct of the atmosphere, and the point here is that their false construct is directly tested by the de Saussure device, and this is a device which can be setup to quite drastically minimize all of the other experimental factors which we find in the open atmosphere; this device allows us to focus in almost exclusively upon the alarmist’s concept of a backradiation radiative greenhouse effect. The main function of this device is to do precisely what they think the atmosphere should do in their concept of a radiative greenhouse effect, and because it is a device which can be built, then it can be built to minimize and/or account for and control all of the other experimental factors, which is much more difficult to do with the open & uncontrolled atmosphere.

Yes, it is their false mental construct, and that is why a device which can directly test it is so useful.

The mathematical consideration is that it is also a simple enough device that it can be modeled with Joseph Fourier’s fundamental equations of heat flow (which involve 2-D partial differential equations and the Fourier Transform, etc). Whether this device will prove or disprove the radiative greenhouse effect, as discussed on the OP, depends solely upon the boundary conditions used for the solution of the Fourier heat flow equations. And so it should be as possible to mathematically determine which solution is true (pro-radiative greenhouse effect, or non-radiative greenhouse effect), as it is to mathematically demonstrate that two objects of unequal mass will still fall at the same rate, despite the real-world complexities of actually performing the relevant experiment with a feather and a hammer.

27. jerry krause says:

Hi Joe,

Thank you for posting my latest comments.

I carefully read your comments to Carl and I began to see what I didn’t know (see) before. For I finally googled de Saussure and that got me nowhere. But when I googled ‘de Saussure device’ I discovered that Horace de Saussure had made some first-rate experiments with his hot-box in the 1700s. And what he observed clearly seemed to empirically support the greenhouse effect hypothesis. So, because you do believe that this hypothesis is bogus, you believe there is no way to empirically refute it so your only option is to refute it by mathematical argument.

This morning I just discovered that John O’Sullivan, whom I believe you know, had totally misinterpreted something I had written to him. As good as de Saussure’s experiments (observations with his hot-box were) seem; they did not go far enough. It seems he did not shade the direct sunlight from illuminating his hot-box once its interior maximum temperature had been reached. If he had, I know from experiences that the interior temperature would begin decrease. I do not know how rapidly it would decrease because I can imagine the hot bottom surface of the first bottom glass pane and the walls of the box would have an unknown (to me) thermal inertia (heat capacity). But I can also imagine, based on my experiences, that by the next morning, just before sunrise the interior temperature probably had decreased, given a cloudless sky condition, to below the temperature of the exterior atmosphere in contact with the box. And it would be this observation which would empirically refute the greenhouse effect hypothesis.

For if the glass panes were ‘trapping’ the heat inside the box (preventing longwave radiation from being transmitted through them), the interior of the box, thermally insolated to minimize the transfer of energy (heat) to its surroundings by thermal conduction, should not cool according to the hypothesis.

No, I have not yet constructed a de Saussure device, and tested what would actually be seen to validate my claim as to what would be observed as I have proposed. But as you stated, it would be easy to do. And because I have the necessary materials, I will do it as soon as there are ‘clear’ sky conditions for the necessary period of time.

Have a good day, Jerry

28. [Just re-posting my comment since it had a few significant edits]

Jerry,

As discussed here:

Click to access 1510.02503.pdf

de Saussure’s results did not empirically support the radiative greenhouse effect hypothesis. They merely demonstrated a hot-box, botanist’s greenhouse, prevented from open atmosphere convective cooling. This is the reason why I would like a mathematical demonstration of the device to demonstrate the non-existence of the radiative greenhouse effect.

JK: “…what he observed clearly seemed to empirically support the greenhouse effect hypothesis. So, because you do believe that this hypothesis is bogus, you believe there is no way to empirically refute it so your only option is to refute it by mathematical argument.”

Your statement implies that I am attempting to do something dishonest. Clearly, given my writing and the OP, I think that empiricism and mathematics meet and should agree with each other. You completely misunderstand the relevance of mathematical physics here and the need for it to be applied, and the text of the OP for this thread. One does not apply mathematical physics to refute empiricism, but to explain it. The sequence you describe would be totally illogical.

The response of the device in direct-sunlight insolation is the correct way to test. The wait-to-morning test is not the correct one as it doesn’t correspond to the physics required for the alarmist’s radiative greenhouse effect – what you propose is simply not the correct or relevant experiment.

If you do build one, note Carl’s comments which make the interpretation of the empirical results extremely difficult unless various parameters are carefully controlled. And of course, if the correct experiment isn’t even performed, as you intend, then that simply obfuscates the entire concern.

29. JP: “…it should be as possible to mathematically determine which solution is true (pro-radiative greenhouse effect, or non-radiative greenhouse effect), as it is to mathematically demonstrate that two objects of unequal mass will still fall at the same rate, despite the real-world complexities of actually performing the relevant experiment with a feather and a hammer.”

Galileo didn’t drop two balls of unequal weight out of pure navel-gazing introspective speculation in order to then invent the mathematics which demonstrated the necessity of this – rather, Galileo mathematically discovered the necessity that two unequal weights should fall at the same rate, which he was then compelled to empirically demonstrate. Logic, particularly mathematical logic, provides the reason for empirical results. Aristotle did not argue mathematically, and this is why he got things wrong.

30. In fact Aristotle argued emperically, which is why he got that wrong.

31. Elie Saoud says:

Hi Joseph,,,
first of all “chapeau bas” for your perfect dedication to Truth baptised Ontological Mathemamtics by the authors of the AC site and their fellow Illuminati,,,
I’m not into weather stuff but You made it more interesting to me because You are one of a kind,,,
i just have one question right now off the weather channel:) :

what is the sufficient reason to have a constant speed of light in the world r>0 and why it is this number and not that,,, and what is the sufficient reason to have a constant speed of thought propagation and what could be this number xor frequency and why it is such number and not another and why should not it be infinite in the world r=0?

If You have an answer I’ll be pleased to have it from You D’Artagnan,,, if You have any contact with the three musketeers illuminati could You send them my question?

thanks a lot

32. Hi Elie,

The reasons are purely mathematical and I discussed them here I think: https://climateofsophistry.com/2013/12/22/a-religious-derivation-of-special-relativity/

The ontological speed of light seems to be equal to a unitless value of 1. How to convert between ontological unitless values for all of the natural constants and, say, SI units, isn’t known by me.

But yes, in the r=0 domain, the speed is infinite.

33. Elie Saoud says:

Hi Joseph,,,
thanks for trying to answer me,,,
Read You & Catch You Later

34. Hi Elie,

Maybe try asking your questions in a different or more detailed way and it might help me think of a better way to answer. Cheers.

35. Elie Saoud says:

Hi Joseph,,,
Firstly I wonder why there should be any limit for the speed of communication in our world which is r>0, in other terms why the speed of light is the maximum speed we experience i.e. what is the reason for having a limit on the maximum speed?
Secondly if the speed of thought in r=0 is infinite then what is this factor that makes an infinite quantity turn to a finite one in r>0?

thanks Joseph

36. Hi Elie,

First perhaps it is best to dispense with the idea that the speed of thought in r = 0 is infinite; r = 0 is the singularity and so everything is in simultaneous contact, and the difference between monads is not in position but in state. So, it is not about an actual infinite speed being converted by some mathematics to finite speed – the language that the speed of thought in r = 0 is “infinite” was loose, poor language, in terms of “essentially being how one could think of it”. The speed of thought in r = 0 is actually the same as the speed of thought in spacetime, i.e. the speed of light, but it is just that everything is in simultaneous contact in r = 0 and so no time is required to propagate a thought. You can say that this means “essentially that thought propagates at infinite speed in r = 0”, if one were to think of it from a space-time perspective, but that is not an actual, literally true statement, just a sort of metaphor or analogy.

I think that the development of applied ontological mathematics will allow for communication and travel at “infinite” speed in r > 0 as well, one day. But this is speculative.

37. Elie Saoud says:

Hi Joseph,,,

I thank You for taking the time to brainstorm a little bit to hand me an answer,,,
I will communicate mine to You in time,,,
My logic still refuses to see the constancy of the speed of light in all references as unshakable truth and, like You too, I believe that we will witness someday higher speed than c in r>1,,,
one epsilon remark 🙂 : infinity cannot but be a dynamic ontological concept i.e. static infinity does not exist :),,,

Regards

38. Elie Saoud says:

Hi Joseph,,,

I forgot one thing I really like You to see :),,, I don’t know if You’ve seen it before,,, in case of a “NO” search youtube for “secrets in plain sights”,,, it’s a long video but it’s worth watching and reflecting upon,,, it’s about some exceptional use of mathematics especially geometry,,, don’t underestimate it :),,, before digesting it,,,

Have a nice day

39. jerry krause says:

Hi Joe,

You wrote (06/06/2016 at 4:27pm): “In fact Aristotle argued empirically, which is why he got that wrong.”

This is what Galileo, as translated by Crew and de Salvio, wrote.

Salv: “… I greatly doubt that Aristotle ever tested by experiment whether it be true that two stones, one weighing ten times as much as the other, if allowed to fall, at the same instant, from a height of, say, 100 cubits, would so differ in speed that when the heavier had reached the ground, the other would not have fallen more than 10 cubits.”

Simp: “His language would seem to indicate that he had tried the experiment, because he says: ‘We see the heavier’; now the word see shows that he had made the experiment.”

Sagr: “But I, Simplicio, who have made the test can assure you that a cannon ball weighing one or two hundred poinds, or even more, will not reach the ground by as much as a span ahead of a musket ball weighing only half a pound, provided both are dropped from a height of 200 cubits.”

Hence, you might be correct when you say Aristotle “argued” empirically, but you would be wrong if you conclude that Aristotle had actually done the experiment he implied.

Have a good day, Jerry

40. [jerry…updated the comment so that you can more easily understand it]

Well see Jerry poor Sagr is using sophistry and pulling one over on Simp.

They didn’t have large highly spherical cannon balls in Aristotle’s time and if one performs the experiment with small objects and/or irregularly shaped stones one can easily find Aristotle’s result. I make no claim as to what Aristotle may have done and so your objection there is pointless and also false.

Aristotle argued purely on sense-perception empiricism where light objects fell slower than heavy ones, and this is an empirical experiment that all children have performed and know the result of if not by purpose then by happenstance of playing with leaves and sticks and pebbles; Aristotle never thought of the concept of friction. In Galileo’s time however friction had become a very well known phenomenon, as in the process of milling cannons for those cannon balls which Aristotle preceded by thousands of years, a great deal of friction must be overcome with the use of horsepower and leveraging systems etc.

Even if Aristotle had been aware of friction, then he didn’t think of the utility of separating friction out from the primary phenomenon. And that is why a de Saussure device is so useful, and why the mathematical approach is so useful as it allows one to separate out overlapping influences and inspect the desired influence on its own.

41. jerry krause says:

Joe, why did you censor my comment so readers of your site could not read it in the context of your original comment which you edited so I could better? understand wrote you originally wrote? I expect this, like my previous, will not see the light of day. The truth is that you are a sophist. You create issues which are not issues that Galileo does not address. Heard from Carl your friend lately? I haven’t and you were the last to have a conversation with him. And I considered what he wrote to you was quite critical of what you had posted. Are you censoring his replies also?

42. Jerry, I censored your comment because I maintain a certain standard of decency here and I don’t let the comments devolve into sophistry and point-scoring, which is what you are attempting.

Jerry, with this comment:

“when I googled ‘de Saussure device’ I discovered that Horace de Saussure had made some first-rate experiments with his hot-box in the 1700s. And what he observed clearly seemed to empirically support the greenhouse effect hypothesis. So, because you do believe that this hypothesis is bogus, you believe there is no way to empirically refute it so your only option is to refute it by mathematical argument.”

you demonstrate that you are unable to understand the empirical results of de Saussure, because his results did not support the idea of a radiative greenhouse effect. This puts your competence in science and logic into serious question. And then, you imply that I am attempting some sophistic sleight of hand in trying to invent some mathematical argument despite it being in contradiction to what you believe are the experimental results. This is an attack on my character and what you believe my motives are, and it rather puts your motives and presence here into question than it has anything to do with me.

Then later you say:

“Hence, you might be correct when you say Aristotle “argued” empirically, but you would be wrong if you conclude that Aristotle had actually done the experiment he implied.”

when I have clearly made no claims as to what Aristotle may have done. All children know the empirical result that light things fall slower and travel less far when thrown than heavy things, such as leaves and sticks and pebbles etc. Hence it is irrelevant to call me “wrong” about something which I never said in the first place. You’re simply gaming here. Don’t think for a minute that I don’t see what you’re doing.

Yes I have been talking with my friend Carl and we’re getting on great as usual; he told me that he now understands what the OP was getting at.

Carl has no-moderation comment priviledges here as his input is highly valued and valuable. Many other people do too. Some people I keep under moderation so that I can maintain a certain level of decorum, when I detect usage of sophistry and/or alterior motives in their presence here.

Yes, you would consider what Carl wrote to be quite critical, and given your personality you consider this to be a bad thing, some sort of slight against the OP and its author. That comment of yours says everything about who you are, and what you’re doing here. We see right through it. You simply do not understand that what Carl wrote is entirely supportive of the point of the OP.

If you return, please do so with something more on point, rather than this sort of messing around.

43. By those same arguments then the Medieval, Roman, Minoan, and 1930’s (etc.) Warm Periods weren’t natural either. And that is why they have tried re-writing geological history and temperature records, to hide those past warm periods.

Then, the only justification they have for the current warm period (which is no different than the past warm periods…although they try to hide that) is the greenhouse effect and greenhouse gasses, but unfortunately for them the greenhouse effect doesn’t exist.

44. Dan Kirk says:

Sorry I’m not a mathmatician and though I can appreciate the failings of theories based purely on mathmatical theory the queston arises in my mind, if the experiment to prove this is so easy to do physically why not do it and create concrete physical evidence to support your claim? no amount of mathmatics debate can counter repeatable observation.

45. Rosco says:

Joe – as usual I come in late on these things.

Your explanation of the radiation “amplification” inherent in modern climate “science’s” explanation of your “de-Saussure device” IS explicitly taught in University lectures from Washington University here :-

http://www.atmos.washington.edu/2001Q1/211/notes_for_011001_lecture.html

under the Section titled A multi-layer atmosphere. They don’t seem to mention this in later on line notes !

They explicitly claim multi layers cause the effect you claim they expect thus proving you right to claim their analysis is simply ridiculous.

In the text – “An iterative approach” – they even explicitly state that-

“Hence, the surface of the planet will have to be hot enough to emit twice as much radiation as a planet wothout a greenhouse effect. From the text it follows that the absolute temperature of the surface (in deg K) will have to be warmer by a factor of 1.19 (the fourth root of 2). The temperature of the atmosphere will be the same as the effective temperature of the planet. ”

Thus we have “The temperature of the atmosphere will be the same as the effective temperature of the planet.” They are explicitly stating that an atmosphere at ~255K is transferring heat to an object that is at least as hot as it or hotter than it.

This denies the possibility of thermal equilibrium with net exchange equal to zero when 2 objects are at the same temperature as is explicitly stated in every text I have read !

It also denies the thermodynamic statement by Clausius :-

The Second Law of Theromdynamics –

http://web.mit.edu/16.unified/www/FALL/thermodynamics/notes/node37.html – The Clausius statement:-

“No process is possible whose sole result is the transfer of heat from a cooler to a hotter body.”

Yet the people who advocate a “back radiative greenhouse effect” continually add the radiation from cold surroundings to the “input” radiation to increase the temperature of a body which they readily acknowledge is already hotter than the surroundings and THEY claim anyone objecting to this doesn’t understand thermodynamics ??

I finally got one of them to use their set of equations similar to Brown’s Steel Greenhouse ones but put in actual numbers and there it was in black and white !

He added the radiation from surroundings with a value of 232 to the radiation “input” of 523 to force the temperature of the object already emitting 523 at ~310 K to emit 755 K at 340 K.

Q = sigma(T^4 – T(surrounding) = sigma(310^4 – 0^4) in deep space = ~523 W/m2

Move it to surroundings of minus 20 C – ~253 K and his equation becomes:-

Q = 523 = sigma T^4 – sigma 253^4 = 523 + 253^4 = sigma T^4 thus T = (755/sigma)^-4 = ~340 K

And yet none of them accept this is transfer of heat from cold surroundings to a hotter object ?

How this can be accepted as “science” is simply mind boggling !

46. Rosco says:

Chic Bowdrie wrote :-

“An atmosphere without IR-active gases would still make surface temperatures warmer, on average, than they would otherwise be, albeit more variable.”

I agree with part of this – “An atmosphere without IR-active gases would still make surface temperatures warmer”. Removing the component of the atmosphere claimed to reduce the solar input must equate to higher surface temperatures.

But the variable part is highly debateable.

The alarmists always claim that ~83% of the Earth’s radiation to space comes from the atmosphere – Kiehl & Trenberth for example.

They also claim that 99% of the atmosphere neither absorbs any significant surface emitted IR nor, by extension, emits any significant IR – this is the very basis of all of the trace gas heating alarm after all.

Such an atmosphere – robbed of the very molecules claimed to be responsible for 83% of Earth’s radiation to space – “Greenhouse Gases” – would never be able to come to any radiative equilibrium and would indeed suffer a never ending heating cycle beyond the heat input if such “thermodynamic” constructs as quoted by the greenhouse effect advocates are real.

Clearly their constructs are not real.

47. Rosco says:

Always remember I only write comments based on the “settled science” so when I appear to criticize something I am always investigating the claims of the “settled science” versus what I find in real science texts and am never attacking anyone’s views or abilities.

48. Dan Kirk says:

While I can see your point, but if you want to look at acepted science it is easy to see that Co2 absorbs more outgoing radiation than incoming it has the effect of slowing down the passing of energy out of the atmosphere which will lead to warming, specifically where the atmosphere is most dense near the surface.
Lets assume that you are right and that anthropogenic warming is fictional, we than have to ask the question what is warming the atmosphere, given that if you look at the unadjusted temperature records there is a slow but consistant increase. This is sonething that can heat an atmosphere on a planetary scale and that not one single person has spotted? If you are suggesting that our Co2 emissions are just insignificant well there is some pretty convincing evidence linking climatic events to mass extinctions, in which case looking at ways to sequester atmospheric gases such as Co2 could potentialy save us from the next iceage. This being the case man made Co2 may not be significant to causing global warming but it could create a massive extra expense if it comes to having to remove it from the atmosphere.

49. Chic Bowdrie says:

Roscoe,

It’s hard to tell from your comment if you understand the point I was making. Basically I’m trying to discourage the use of greenhouse terminology when discussing the atmosphere and its effect on surface temperatures. It is a terrible analogy and using it only propagates confusion and complicity with warmist arguments. If you agree that IR-active gases do not warm the surface by trapping IR and radiating it back to the surface, then why would you call them greenhouse gases? Greenhouse terminology misrepresents the role of IR-active gases by implying they are responsible for the planet’s surface being warmer than one without an atmosphere.

You have caused me to reverse my opinion that Earth without IR-active gases would be warmer than it is. The warmest the surface would be, assuming no emission from the N2/O2 atmosphere, is about 278 K. With variable temperatures, the average surface temperature would be lower.

Now to your doubting our atmosphere would be more temperate having less extreme temperatures (ie, less variable) than the same atmosphere but devoid of IR-active gases. The bottom line is that IR-active gases enhance cooling during the day and inhibit cooling during the night. This makes average surface temperatures less extreme. The total outgoing radiation from a set of moderate temperatures will always be greater than from a set of more extreme temperatures as long as the average temperature remains the same.

I wish you would explain the thermodynamic constructs you are talking about. Earth would never come to radiative equilibrium especially with ocean sinks and IR-activity in the atmosphere.

50. “but if you want to look at acepted science”

I don’t look at accepted science. I reject it in this case.

“it is easy to see that Co2 absorbs more outgoing radiation than incoming it has the effect of slowing down the passing of energy out of the atmosphere which will lead to warming”

Yes, that is specifically what is rejected. There is no radiative greenhouse effect.

“we than have to ask the question what is warming the atmosphere”

The Sun.

“if you look at the unadjusted temperature records there is a slow but consistant increase. This is sonething that can heat an atmosphere on a planetary scale and that not one single person has spotted?”

The Sun does it and it is easy to spot. The temperature changes currently occurring, over the last century, do no require explanation as they amount to no more than noise variations in a very noisy signal. However, the slow but consistent increase for the last 150 years is what one would expect coming out of a little ice age which occurred previous to and ended at 150 years ago. The question is then what caused the last little ice age, with the current steady warming from that period being explained by the cessation of whatever caused the cooling for that mini ice age. The explanation seems to come from solar magnetic sunspot activity, which has an effect on galactic and intergalactic cosmic rays intersecting the inner solar system & Earth, which has an effect on cloud formation and thus the albedo of the Earth. This has indeed been spotted and reported on in accepted science, which I accept.

“If you are suggesting that our Co2 emissions are just insignificant well there is some pretty convincing evidence linking climatic events to mass extinctions,”

Depletion of CO2 would lead to mass extinction. There are no mass-extinctions caused by increases of CO2, and none expected at the levels they are expected to increase to.

“in which case looking at ways to sequester atmospheric gases such as Co2 could potentialy save us from the next iceage”

CO2 is supposed to cause warming, and you implied that it causes warming.

No need to remove it that we know of. Plants like more of it.

51. Dan Kirk says:

We have come out of an ice age but celestial observations suggest we are have entered a period of global cooling, this is solid science https://www.carbonbrief.org/is-climate-change-all-just-a-recovery-from-the-little-ice-age.
The extinction events did involve much higher levels of Co2 but also showed global climate change which mirrored the effects http://news.mit.edu/2011/mass-extinction-1118, unless you are suggesting that volcanic activity has a global warming effect? http://phys.org/news/2013-03-link-co2-mass-extinctions-species.html

Again the science may be debateable as to the relative size of influences but if you are so sure your beliefs are correct why not just take a climate model put your theory to the test and prove the scientific community wrong? Surely the temptation to change the course of climate science and I would guess a nobel prize are motivation enough for anyone? That is after all the basis of science reproduceable observation, rather than debate. I’d be happy to believe as would any other scientists given appropriate evidence, that your assumptions are right but simply attacking the science isn’t going to do that unless you have a better alternative.

52. “We have come out of an ice age but celestial observations suggest we are have entered a period of global cooling, this is solid science”

The link that followed your statement stated what I already did – that after a little ice age occurs, and ends, then warming is the result. Hence, the need to understand what caused the cooling, with warming being the result of the cessation of the cause of cooling. Yes, it does seem to be valid science.

“The extinction events did involve much higher levels of Co2”

CO2 was higher in the past but higher CO2 did not cause the extinction events. Your statement is sophist.

“unless you are suggesting that volcanic activity has a global warming effect?”

Straw Man fallacy, and sophist. I have made no statements about volcanic activity and global warming. Volcanic activity is said to cause cooling due to dust in the atmosphere.

“extinction events did involve much higher levels of Co2 but also showed global climate change which mirrored the effects, unless you are suggesting that volcanic activity has a global warming effect”

Higher CO2 levels do not cause increased volcanic activity.

“Again the science may be debateable as to the relative size of influences but if you are so sure your beliefs are correct why not just take a climate model put your theory to the test and prove the scientific community wrong?”

The science is also debatable as to the existence of the required influences in the first place. The radiative greenhouse effect is a fraud…pseudoscience. Because the Earth isn’t flat. I have no beliefs on this issue. I am 100% certain that the Earth is not flat and therefore that the postulate of the radiative greenhouse effect which originates in a flat Earth model is wrong. The scientific community doesn’t wish to be wrong and is also politically and psychologically biased against making such an admission.

“Surely the temptation to change the course of climate science and I would guess a nobel prize are motivation enough for anyone?”

You do not know what Nobel Prizes are awarded for. One wouldn’t be awarded for something like this, and no, even if there were a prospect of winning one, that is not motivation. Nor is motivation found in a “temptation to change the course of climate science”. Motivation is found in understanding reality, and correcting bad science.

“That is after all the basis of science reproduceable observation, rather than debate. ”

The postulate of the radiative greenhouse effect has never been demonstrated in reproduceable observation, although, it is possible for science to misinterpret what it thinks it is observing – for example, the temperature at the bottom of the atmosphere. Debate and logical and philosophical analysis is required to correct such misinterpretations.

“I’d be happy to believe as would any other scientists given appropriate evidence, that your assumptions are right but simply attacking the science isn’t going to do that unless you have a better alternative.”

An alternative proposition is not required to prove that an existing proposition is false. Climate alarm science makes the assumption that postulates which originate out of a flat-Earth model are legitimate. That’s their assumption. I make no assumptions in demonstrating that the aforementioned assumption produces bad science, disconnected to reality, and which is false. The only evidence any scientist requires is the evidence supplied by reason: the evidence exists that the Earth is not flat, that sunshine does not impinge the entire surface area of the Earth at once, that sunshine has a much greater forcing power than -40 degrees Celsius, etc. Given that this evidence exists, it can therefore be concluded that scientists are happier to believe in their assumptions, than they are happy to be wrong or to rationally and critically think about evidence.

53. carlallen says:

“if you want to look at acepted science it is easy to see that Co2 . . . will lead to warming, specifically where the atmosphere is most dense near the surface.”

Which “accepted” version of the “greenhouse effect” hypothesis do you believe in? You may not be aware but there are over a dozen versions of the “greenhouse effect” hypothesis being bandied about. So much for their being a “scientific consensus” on this particular subject.

Whatever the presumed mechanism of operation all “greenhouse effect” hypotheses have one thing in common, they all assert that the presence of CO2 in the atmosphere causes the atmosphere near the ground to be warmer than it would be if there were no CO2 in the atmosphere. To quantify this presumed warming a scale was developed called “climate sensitivity”, which is the amount of global, near-the-ground atmospheric warming expected when CO2 levels from preindustrial times (~270ppm) double to ~540ppm. Many scientific papers predict this to be anywhere from 1-4 C.

Important scientific point: It hasn’t happened yet. CO2 levels have not yet reached ~540ppm and won’t for another 70 years at the current yearly rate of increase of ~2ppm. The scientists then living might reassess the “global mean temperature” and compare it to the “global mean temperature” seen in the mid 19th century. At that time there will finally exist one data point in this grand experiment. Since no credible scientist would base a scientific conclusion on only one data point, we would then have to let CO2 double again to ~1080ppm which at its current level of increase would happen in ~2460. The scientists then living might reassess the “global mean temperature” and compare it to the “global mean temperature” seen in 2200. At that time there will exist two data points in this grand experiment.

The point is, no one on either side of this debate actually knows what the “climate sensitivity” of carbon dioxide is. It is all hypothetical. It would seem that a large number of people “believe” that the “climate sensitivity” of carbon dioxide is positive, never the less that “belief” is still just a “belief”; it is not scientific evidence.

The same is not true for the “greenhouse gas” that is orders of magnitude more powerful than carbon dioxide—water vapor. There is demonstrable scientific evidence that water vapor is a lower atmospheric coolant—by lower atmosphere I mean from ground level up to 4-5 km. This evidence is found in weather balloon sounding, temperature vs. humidity records, surface radiation measurements, etc. The reason that I know that belief in the “greenhouse effect” hypothesis is a religious belief and not scientific knowledge is because those who believe in the “greenhouse effect” hypothesis universally and out-of-hand reject the empirical scientific evidence that falsifies it, i.e., that water vapor lowers ground level mean temperatures and therefore cannot be raising ground level mean temperatures as the “greenhouse effect” asserts.

54. Dan Kirk says:

that is a reductionist argument at it’s worst quite frankly, and while I agree there is evidence on water vapour being a significant player in climate change the understanding is far from simple as you suggest in fact some of the major research being performed into climate change is trying to identify the effects and feedback mechanisms and water vapour is not a coolant is is simply a buffer is absorbs and emits heat as it changes phase just like the oceans. The only significant net change I can see is cloud albedo, which is probably the least understood factor.

I note that while arguing that low clouds reduce temperature you failed to mention the fact that high level clouds and deep convective clouds also increase it? or is that not relevant.

55. First of all, reduction is the name of the game of science – we reduce things to the fundamentals so that they can be understood. Secondly, it is an argument based on evidence, as you had previously asked for: “This evidence is found in weather balloon sounding, temperature vs. humidity records, surface radiation measurements, etc.” Carl can provide more details if he wishes.

“some of the major research being performed into climate change is trying to identify the effects and feedback mechanisms [of] water vapour”

Yes, and they assume that it is a positive feedback. Carl has found empirically that it is actually a coolant, a negative feedback.

“water vapour is not a coolant is is simply a buffer”

Here you are in contradiction to climate alarm science, which says that water is not merely a buffer, but a positive feedback temperature amplifier.

“The only significant net change I can see is cloud albedo, which is probably the least understood factor.”

Carl can fill you in on the cooling effect of water vapor in non-cloud form, but if more water vapor also had the effect of creating more clouds, then this too is a cooling negative feedback effect. However, clouds are not the precise question – water vapor in the visibly transparent state was the reference and which is relevant to the greenhouse effect, and the presence of this is empirically found to be a cooling phenomenon whereas the climate alarmist greenhouse postulate requires it to be a warming phenomenon.

56. Dan Kirk says:

Postma “An alternative proposition is not required to prove that an existing proposition is false” While I agree this is true that does not mean I’m going back to believeing in the bible because evolution has its flaws. The definition of science is surely that it is the best available theory to explain the events, while we cannot explain gravity should we reject newtons laws on motion?

“unless you are suggesting that volcanic activity has a global warming effect?”
Straw Man fallacy, and sophist. I have made no statements about volcanic activity and global warming. Volcanic activity is said to cause cooling due to dust in the atmosphere.”
Oh and way to pick your own argument you choose to take a section of what I said and make that a straw man fallacy? come on I expected better. Extinction events that involved volcanic activity involved immediate cooling from particulates released into the atmosphere followed by longer term warming caused by large quantities of Co2 (amongst other gasses released into the atmosphere) If you wish to use logical basis for your arguments that specifically was an appeal to ignorance and you are using a negative affirmation to form a positive conclusion or your main argument.

Again if the science is so obviously wrong why not just put your better model to the test of your peers? That is the nature of science surely?

” The process involving making conjectures (hypotheses), deriving predictions from them as logical consequences, and then carrying out experiments based on those predictions to determine whether the original conjecture was correct”

On the other hand “A heckler is a person who harasses and tries to disconcert others with questions, challenges, or gibes.” which without some solid science you seem to have become, your argument of repitition of the flat earth issue seems to be only for basic teaching purposes and is not used in modern climate models therefore is not relevant.

The Co2 IR saturation effect is as yet the only credible piece of evidence I have seen counter to the GHE arguments and while compelling it still leaves a hole where a causal effect should be, perhaps it is a contributing factor or it has some other relationship to the observations but until that is found it still remains a good argument, much like theories of gravity it seems to work so why stop using it before we find a better alternative.

57. Dan Kirk says:

Science is the understanding of the principals not the reduction of it and there is no contradiction between a buffer and a positive feedback system, water absorbs energy, the more energy it absorbs the warmer the surrounding air will become which will create more water vapour. Your argument should have been that they have not shown that there is a positive or negative effect from the feedback.

does water increase the emission of IR radiation from the planet?
water becomes water vapour which becomes potential energy while it cools surface temperatures by dispersing heat it does not cool anything in a closed system it simply stores that energy and moves it around, convection may raise the heat to a higher level in the atmosphere slightly faster due to the lower density so perhaps it could increase the speed of IR emission in the upper atmosphere but at what level?. Did I miss something?

As for the empirical evidence of atmospheric cooling by water vapour I havent seen that and would love a source to investigate further as the only information I can find seems to state quite the contrary. All the information I come across seems to suggest it has a neutral or slightly positive effect other than in cloud formation and it seems I’m not the only one to have this issue http://www.yaleclimateconnections.org/2008/02/common-climate-misconceptions-the-water-vapor-feedback-2/

58. “While I agree this is true that does not mean I’m going back to believeing in the bible because evolution has its flaws. The definition of science is surely that it is the best available theory to explain the events, while we cannot explain gravity should we reject newtons laws on motion?”

If evolution were proven false it wouldn’t require that you go back to believing in the Bible. If the greenhouse effect were proven false there is nothing equivalent to the Bible that you are being asked or would need to begin believing again. I’m asking you to reject propositions made upon the Earth being flat, and which therefore have no valid empirical interpretational basis under that fact. There is no requirement that you go back to believing anything. You can however accept that the Earth isn’t flat and that the Sun heats the Earth. The greenhouse effect isn’t a flaw in climate alarm science, but is the foundation: it is equivalent to proving that God doesn’t exist, hence the Bible completely meaningless.

“Oh and way to pick your own argument you choose to take a section of what I said and make that a straw man fallacy? come on I expected better.”

You said: “unless you are suggesting that volcanic activity has a global warming effect?”

That was a Straw Man as I had made no reference to volcanic activity.

“Extinction events that involved volcanic activity involved immediate cooling from particulates released into the atmosphere followed by longer term warming caused by large quantities of Co2 (amongst other gasses released into the atmosphere)”

And so CO2 didn’t cause the extinction event. Thank you.

“Again if the science is so obviously wrong why not just put your better model to the test of your peers? That is the nature of science surely?”

A better model is not required to demonstrate that an existing model is wrong. The only model required is that the Sun heats the Earth, and that the Earth is not flat.

”The process involving making conjectures (hypotheses), deriving predictions from them as logical consequences, and then carrying out experiments based on those predictions to determine whether the original conjecture was correct”

Climate alarm science has not done this for the greenhouse effect nor yet accomplished it for the climate in general, as the necessary data points required do not exist yet, and in any case, it is easily empirically shown that water vapour causes cooling which contradicts their greenhouse effect, and already, their own models have failed as they did not predict a hiatus in warming. So, by your own standard, climate alarm science is not behaving scientifically.

“On the other hand “A heckler is a person who harasses and tries to disconcert others with questions, challenges, or gibes.” which without some solid science you seem to have become, your argument of repitition of the flat earth issue seems to be only for basic teaching purposes and is not used in modern climate models therefore is not relevant.”

The greenhouse effect conjecture originates specifically in the flat Earth models and their treatment of solar heating upon the surface of the planet. If the physics required for that conjecture is then inserted into more complex models, it does not escape the fact that said physics originates in error and is still in error. I am sorry that you believe that pointing out that the Earth is not flat, and analyzing the mathematical and physical and logical errors of that mistake, constitutes heckling. This is your loss.

“The Co2 IR saturation effect is as yet the only credible piece of evidence I have seen counter to the GHE arguments”

I am sorry that you are unable to comprehend the difference in physics and mathematics and logic between a flat Earth and a spherical Earth.

“it still remains a good argument, much like theories of gravity it seems to work so why stop using it before we find a better alternative”

I am sorry that you think that physics which originates with an assumption of the Earth being flat presents a good argument, and that you cannot understand what is wrong with this. If you were rational, you would understand that one does not require an alternative proposition in order to accept that an existing proposition is false. In any case, the alternatives already exist and have been referenced in earlier comments to you.

“Science is the understanding of the principals not the reduction of it”

The principle is found by the reduction of the phenomena, and that is how we understand it. The principle is the totally reduced phenomena. This is basic science and philosophy of science. This eludes you.

“ there is no contradiction between a buffer and a positive feedback system”

A buffer can also act as a negative feedback. You wish to assume it is positive. Empirically the water vapour effect is found to be negative.

“water absorbs energy, the more energy it absorbs the warmer the surrounding air will become which will create more water vapour”

Incorrect. By water vapour absorbing heat into its latent energy, it keeps the surrounding area cooler, when the area is being heated. Latent heat allows the absorption of thermal energy without an increase in temperature. This is at least partly why water vapour is a negative feedback.

“Your argument should have been that they have not shown that there is a positive or negative effect from the feedback.”

They assume a positive feedback but the empirical evidence is clearly that it is negative. Latent heat can store thermal energy for later release when it is cooler, but this is not talking about the greenhouse effect and this is not the positive feedback that climate alarm science refers to.

“does water increase the emission of IR radiation from the planet?
water becomes water vapour which becomes potential energy while it cools surface temperatures by dispersing heat it does not cool anything in a closed system it simply stores that energy and moves it around, convection may raise the heat to a higher level in the atmosphere slightly faster due to the lower density so perhaps it could increase the speed of IR emission in the upper atmosphere but at what level?. Did I miss something?”

If water vapor increased IR emission than this aspect is definitely acting as a coolant. Clouds do have high IR emission and this is one way in which they act as a coolant…in addition to having high albedo.

“As for the empirical evidence of atmospheric cooling by water vapour I havent seen that and would love a source to investigate further as the only information I can find seems to state quite the contrary. All the information I come across seems to suggest it has a neutral or slightly positive effect other than in cloud formation and it seems I’m not the only one to have this issue”

Quoting “Yale Climate Connections”, an activist site for climate alarmism, is not going to be of much help when they are operating under all of the false assumptions which have been elucidated in this exchange. Carl can fill in some details if he wishes but the empirical evidence is relatively easy to find: for regions with equal insolation but unequal water vapour content, the region with higher water vapour content is cooler.

59. carlallen says:

“and while I agree there is evidence on water vapour being a significant player in climate change the understanding is far from simple as you suggest”

I never said that the behavior of H2O in the atmosphere is simple; indeed, its effect on the thermodynamics of the atmosphere is multifaceted. What I have observed in the data is that on average there exists an inverse relationship between mean ground level air temperatures and mean absolute humidity levels. Notice here that I use the term “mean”—an average over time—because that is the metric that the “greenhouse effect” hypothesis uses. It asserts that the presence of water vapor in the atmosphere causes the “mean” ground level air temperature to be some 22-25 C warmer than it would be if there were no water vapor in the atmosphere. This is an assertion that is falsified by observation.

The clearest and most incontrovertible evidence of this is found in weather balloon soundings. Again, we are looking at the average or mean effect of water vapor on the temperature profile of the troposphere, which is predictable. Descending from the tropopause, which is on average ~11 km in altitude the lapse rate (the rate at which the air warms as you descend) averages ~8 C/km. If you are descending into an arid climate that lapse rate continues all the way to the ground during the day and during the night the lapse rate often inverts near the ground.

If you are descending into a humid climate at about 4-5 km in altitude the lapse rate drops to an average of about 5.5 C/km (this will vary depending upon the actual humidity) and this also continues all the way to the ground during the day and again during the night this lapse rate often inverts near the ground.

What is observed in the real world is that because humidity lowers the lapse rate of the lower 4-5 km of air (an observation that is universally acknowledged by everyone everywhere) ground level air temperatures in humid climates are measurably cooler than in arid climates.

Why did I start at the tropopause and go downward with my analysis? Because upper tropospheric temperatures do not vary significantly along the same latitude between arid and humid climates. For example, the temperature profile of the troposphere from 5-11 km above Mississippi is nearly identical to the the temperature profile of the troposphere from 5-11 km above Nevada even though the humidity levels below 5 km vary significantly from one region to the other. Because of the stability of upper tropospheric temperatures, the lower lapse rate within the lower troposphere above humid Mississippi can have only one effect and that is to lower ground level air temperatures.

Stated another way, if the “greenhouse effect” hypothesis were true, if water vapor where “trapping heat” in the air then that entrapment would increase as the water vapor content of the air increases, which would, in turn, augment the lapse rate—cause an acceleration in warming as one descends into a humid climate. It is quite revealing to download humidity levels from weather balloon soundings and graph the sharp increase in humidity seen as one descends from 4-5 km down to the ground. Because of the sharp increase in humidity that exists as one descends towards the ground a water vapor induced “greenhouse effect” if it existed would cause precipitous warming near the ground. Such warming is simply absent and instead we see cooler ground level air temperatures in humid climates.

Humid climates may not feel cooler to us human beings because our bodies are cooled by evaporation, which high humidity inhibits, but remember: science operates on temperature readings from calibrated thermometers; it does not operate on how one “feels”.

The mechanisms by which the presence of H2O in all of its forms achieves this cooling is, indeed, multifaceted.
1) The creation of water vapor in the first place requires evaporation of ground water, which cools the ground
2) The presence of water vapor enhances the emissivity of air and consequently increases the up-going, intra-atmospheric net radiation heat loss rate.
3) As humid air ascends skyward it cools adiabatically and condenses into clouds which increase the planet’s albedo
4) When this process crosses a certain threshold a phenomenon called “moist convection” begins which accelerates strong updrafts which further pull thermal energy upwards away from the ground where the thermometers are whose readings are averaged to produce a “mean global temperature”
5) Since these clouds are nearly always cooler than the ground, when they precipitate that precipitation itself cools the ground even further.

As you will note a number of these effects of H2O in the atmosphere cool ground level air by moving thermal energy up the atmospheric column, but here is the thing. One does not observe a significant increase in upper tropospheric temperatures above humid climates compared to arid climate along the same latitude. Consequently, the average temperature of the entire atmospheric column drops when there is H2O in the air. This is completely out of sync with the “greenhouse effect” hypothesis some versions of which assert that “greenhouse gases” such as water vapor increase the temperature of the entire atmospheric column.

Carl

60. Gary Ashe says:

Carl.

I was reading the other day about the water-cycle, i forget where it was now sorry, but i mainly read other earth science’s rather than climatology, anyway i learnt something about water and ocean warming, you probably know this but others who are like me may not, water cannot be heated from above in any other way than radiation, surface tension stops it, is that right ?.

61. carlallen says:

“water cannot be heated from above in any other way than radiation, surface tension stops it, is that right ?”

I don’t know what role surface tension would play other than clearly establishing a boundary between water an air. If the air that is touching the water is warmer than the water than the laws of thermodynamics dictate that heat would flow from the air to the water. Real world observations though demonstrate that the temperature of the air touching the Earth’s oceans is almost always cooler than the water itself making the flow of heat almost always from the water to the air. (see: https://bobtisdale.wordpress.com/2010/12/22/toa-project-sea-air-and-sea-surface-temperature-data/)

There is no mechanism that I am aware of by which surface tension can inhibit the flow of heat; said flow of heat is as always determined by a temperature differential is it not?

Carl

62. Gary Ashe says:

Carl.

Thanks for the link, i am going to give it a read now,,,, i tried a google search and came up with this,,,, ”you cannot heat water from above on this planet due to surface tension.” its Rodger Plke snr i think, at the hockeystick site, i remember ending up there with click through’s, a few days ago, turns out it is something from the comments section, that stuck in my mind.

””’If you are concerned about transfer of heat from atmosphere to ocean,get yourself an electrical heat gun and hold it over a bucket of water for 5 minutes. No heat transfer. reason, surface tension. NO heat transfer period.””’..

63. Well that’s rather anecdotal, regarding the heat gun & water etc. Maybe 5 minutes wasn’t long enough. The issue would be weather water surface was reflective in the IR, in which case it would reflect IR energy. Pretty sure that water tension isn’t related to water albedo, and that water is a good absorber of IR. The comment seems like BS and sophistry.

64. Gary Ashe says:

Carl.

That link is now a desktop ‘lodger’ thank you.

Joe.

Yes it was anecdotal, but i thought it may have merit being accompanied by the simple test, thats why if it was right Carl would have known.

Did’nt make much difference to my understanding anyway,,,,, shortwave penetrating and warming down to 100mtrs, and thermal vents are the only way i can see of any measurable warming.
Longwave is a nett ocean cooler as far i understand it, only penetrating micro-metre’s, i read it keeps the surface layer 0.3c cooler than the layer beneath, the warm layer underneath is always going to try to equalise the difference, mitigating some of the warming of short wave in

The sun giveth, and the sun taketh away, courtesy of longwave radiation scattering H20.
I also read and believe co2 is only effective at scattering longwave below minus -50c,

I’m almost tempted to say energy in at the tropics and out at the poles, but i’m not sure of my footing.

65. Yes energy in at tropics and out at poles. And the tropics are much cooler by day than they could be (consider lunar noon ~121C) thanks to latent heat absorption and high heat capacity of water. That energy which went other places than temperature increase then comes out at poles and does keep them warmer.

66. Gary Ashe says:

Joe.

Ive read all conflicting numbers on the percentage of the latent surface heat the water cycle removes,

Heres part of something i wrote the other day. is that 85% about right, or do i need to look elsewhere for better info.

This was a reply to a young fella in a facebook group.

I would like to improve on it,

Matty ive tried to use correct terminology, but this isn’t my day job, and i don’t pretend it is, it is easy to read and absorb information, its a lot harder to put into words in a professional manner when your not one, i try to explain the difference between conventional climate theory as i, and probably 70% or more people here were taught it, and the current new boy on the block contender.
No gas at any concentration in the atmosphere can detectably warm Earth’s climate. Claiming so is junk science, the purpose of most gas’s are as cooling agents, the polar opposite to GHE as described in conventional climate theory, a theory that has stood the test of centuries.
Even if these gas’s did behave as greenhouse gas hypothesis says, warm air near the surface, picks up water vapour, has decreased density and rises by convection quickly, you only have to open an oven door to know how quickly hot flows to cold, as the heat instantly belts you in the face, that heat is rushing to its heat[energy] sync of deep space, and it will ALWAYS take the path of least resistance.
. The warm air rises, undergoes adiabatic cooling, and condenses at altitude to form clouds; clouds reflect incoming shortwave radiation, only 26% reaches the surface, cool rain then falls back to the surface. This is a huge heat engine [ the water cycle ] which carries about 85% of the surface energy budget away from the surface to altitude, it should be heating the TOA, for GHE hypothesis to be correct, satellites show it isn’t, and hasn’t since records began 47yrs ago.
When the climate warms a bit, this heat engine ramps up as a huge negative feedback mechanism, a completely observable function of conventional climate theory.
Earth’s main long-term climate is determined by Earth’s orbit, various orbital and rotational parameters (Milankovich Cycles), and the Sun’s activity, this is conventional climate theory
That climate is then modulated in the shorter term by ocean cycles, such as the PDO and AMO, and what appears to be heat flux from the ocean bottom that creates the El Nino/La Nina heat injections.
The Sun currently appears to be going into a form of hibernation,
Earth’s climate is going to be turned cooler for a while, it takes time for the earth to cool as irradiance weakens, water is the major climate contributor, 3/4 of the planet surface is covered with it, the oceans alone cover two thirds of the Earth’s surface, the water stores heat [energy], as the climate cools that heat convects to the atmosphere, as hot always flows to cold, that will continue until equilibrium is achieved, we are in for 5 very cold years, the sun has gone to sleep after 100+yrs of a very strong cycle, all again completely conventional.
It is important to point out that the water cycle, which, is notably missing and given almost no weight in the global computer models or the reports of the IPCC.
This is a purposeful oversight as the alarmist scientists insist that water vapour acts as a positive feedback mechanism to any possible warming CO2 might cause. They know that in their hypothesis CO2 is a weak greenhouse gas and had to alter a physical constant for CO2 by 12-fold to make it more effective. Then, they literally fabricated the (unwritten anywhere in physic’s) assumption that water vapour is effectively enslaved by CO2’s warming effects such that more warming means more water vapour which means more warming which means more water vapour, rinse wash repeat until the seas boil, inventing the run away greenhouse effect, do you see the seas bubbling Matty ?,
From the above it is easy to see that the fraudulent positive feedback effect would only serve to ramp up the water cycle and dissipate the energy to space when the water vapour condenses and releases its latent heat, as in conventional climate theory.
Co2 makes up 0.04% of the atmosphere by volume, that is 400 parts per million parts of atmosphere, of that 0.04% co2 in the atmosphere, we contribute through all human activities 3%.of the 0.04% = 12 parts per million parts of atmosphere b/v.
388ppm b/v essential for all life, and 12ppm b/v to somehow in greenhouse hypotheses cause an energy imbalance, by letting more shortwave radiation in than longwave radiation out, it is patently absurd.
C02 has a half-life [ i.e. between sequestrations ] of 4/5 yrs, what goes up must come down, this means in effect, we have 100% of our released co2 in the atmosphere for the last 12 months, 80% of the 12 months before that, 60% of the previous 12 and 40% of the 12 before that and 20% of the fifth year back,, that is we can never have more than 3 full years worth of emissions in the atmosphere at anytime, and that is currently 12ppm.
Matty despite your bravado you need to show climate effects that A, cannot be explained by conventional climate theory, and B. Climate effects predicted by the new greenhouse effect hypothesis, the 2 proofs that would raise greenhouse effect hypothesis to conventional theory are, the tropical atmospheric hotspot, and TOA [top of the atmosphere] warming, the first has never been observed in over 47yrs of satellite measurement, the second TOA warming also has never been observed in 47yrs of satellite measurements, this is why Nasa use ground station temperature sets in their public dissemination of climate change, thats how they keep breaking the worlds average temperature record every year, its quite simple just move the stations to warmer sheltered spots, or large expanses of tarmac and concrete surfaces, Airports or office block roof’s so they read much higher temperatures at night, as the surface convect’s the stored heat energy away from those surfaces.
There is nothing happening with our climate that is A. Unusual or B. Unexpected, in regards to conventional climate theory, if there is then show me.

67. carlallen says:

”If you are concerned about transfer of heat from atmosphere to ocean, get yourself an electrical heat gun and hold it over a bucket of water for 5 minutes. No heat transfer. reason, surface tension. NO heat transfer period.”

The scientific hypothesis expressed in this statement asserts that “surface tension” creates a one-way, adiabatic boundary between the atmosphere and the ocean. That is, heat can transfer from the ocean to the atmosphere, but it cannot transfer from the atmosphere to the ocean.

The scientific experiment suggested by which this can be verified is to “get yourself an electrical heat gun and hold it over a bucket of water for 5 minutes.”

I assumed that he turned the electrical heat gun on, pointed it at the surface and checked the temperature of the water at the surface both before and after the experiment. With those parameters in mind I performed this experiment not with a “bucket” of water but rather with a cup of water.

Temperature before = 75F
Temperature after = 106F

His scientific hypothesis is falsified. The surface tension of water does not form a one-way, adiabatic boundary between it and its surroundings.

Conclusion: Not everything that you read on Internet blog sites is true.

Carl

68. Gary Ashe says:

Carl.

I thought that Carl thanks, with a bucket or any small container,,,, in all fairness you/ he could/would of heated the cup/bucket rim, then the surface by convection,,,, no it was the open ocean is why i brought to you, theres probably good reason why you, Joe, or a google search did not shine any further light on it, thank you.

Bobs site has had my attention for few quite a few hours now, it is quite disgraceful, Government backed sodomy of the world climatic records.

69. carlallen says:

“theres probably good reason why you, Joe, or a google search did not shine any further light on it, thank you.”

The experiment that I ran did shine light on the hypothesis of whether or not surface tension forms a one-way adiabatic boundary between water and air. It falsified it.

Whether or not heat passes from air to water depends upon the temperature differential between the two as per Newton’s Law of Cooling, as per the Second Law of Thermodynamics.

Surface tension is not even an insulator much less an adiabatic barrier between water and air.

But then, you are a free human being and can chose to believe whatever you want to believe.

Carl

70. Emil says:

My gut feeling has always been that there is something strange about the green houseeffect doesn’t add up. I’m very happy to have found blogs like this one with explanations in line with my feel for physics.
To the point. When greenhouseeffect is explained the statement made is that surfacetemperature is 33 degrees higher than it “should” be. It is said that calculations of earth “effective radiation” temperaturen is 255K. That is an Ok statement, I guess.
Then it goes on to say that the surface is hotter than what can be accounted for in solar irradiation. That is not an Ok statement.
I suppose you are all familiar with SB-law of T⁴ for fluxdensity needed to attain a certain temperature.
That means greenhouse theorys foundation, the very first assumption, consists of a statement that nature’s laws does not apply for earth surface. The theorys base is that earth surface temp is supernatural, it can only be explained with icecold air, not hot sunshine. It is f***ing ridiculous. Since when do we accept scientific theorys only based on an assumption that very functional theories about laws of nature does not apply?
Shouldn’t the assumption be: I miscalculated, of course all energy comes from direct solar irradiation?
Not that the surface is heated by supernatural ice cold air because nature laws don’t apply on earth?
I mean, there is enough fluxdensity hitting the surface as far as I can see to reach 288K. Even more than enough to account for a surface emissivity of 0.8125, if my math hasn’t rottened to much since physicsclasses 15 years ago. And then I’m using their own miscalculated numbers.
Do you see why they get the number 255K(~medium atmospheric T) and why that number is wrong to use for surface T?
And how that same calculation can be used to get 288K without problem? With only solar flux and no religious ice cold gas heating the surface?
It’s late and I’ll go to sleep. Maybe I will wake up and find that I’m just stupid and hit my head through the greenhouseglass;)

71. carlallen says:

“When greenhouse effect is explained the statement made is that surface temperature is 33 degrees higher than it ‘should’ be. It is said that calculations of earth ‘effective radiation’ temperature is 255K.”

The thing is the average temperature of the “surface” of the Earth is ~255K. Let me explain. When viewed from space the “surface” of the Earth is the atmosphere 85% of the mass of which is in the troposphere (the lowest 11 km of air). From the ground to the top of the troposphere the average temperature drops from 15C down to -60C. The average temperature of tropospheric air can be found at its center mass ~5 km in altitude. As calculated the average temperature of tropospheric is around -18C, which also happens to be the temperature of the air at 5 km.

72. Gary Ashe says:

Carl.

Have i given you the wrong impression ?.
When i say ‘thank you’ i mean thank you i agree, and not just thank you as a courtesy,

I find your input very informative, i take it in, i fully understand you, but i just do not possess the ability to re-express what i learn, the way i learn it, this may surprise you, but i read climate science all day, and have done for over a decade, i am retired and live online, climate change and horse racing, its all in the numbers for both, horse racing, weight distance time and underfoot going allowance, with the assumption of honesty,

Then climate change and the immediate assumption of dis-honesty, and the ‘fact check’.
My daily entry has mostly been courtesy of BBC science page, which since brexit has become ‘climate change’ sterile, however today one sneaked through, my entry today was http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-37009305,

Ofcourse there is not the slightest link between CO2 and the warming surface water, it is the millions of newly re-settled people around the lake silting it up, and making its waters darker.

But since Brexit theres real science there now, i think you may like this, shows how little science really knows about our oceans, http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-36806038

73. Gary Ashe says:

Ps, they sneaked it through by using the term ‘climate warming’ this is a prime example of how climate change negative governments and countries are going, and their propaganda organs, you will see the same in America even if Clinton wins, she is just ‘farming’ the millennials, it means nothing, if trump wins the change at NASA will be immediate, followed by the grasping Institutions.

I’m a seasoned observer if nothing else Carl, and i see a sea change of political will outside of America, ‘klimate’ science is dead duck, and eventually there will be repercussions, i just hope i am alive to see Hanson Schmidt et al, both financially and reputation-ally ruined.

74. bongstar420 says:

Mathematics is language. It describes things….like all language, you can create “fiction” and describe things that don’t exist or simply inaccurately describe things that do exist.

My fingers are crossed that “global warming” is real. The alternative is a creeping glacial cycle. I wouldn’t waste my time on math trying to solve this. We don’t have enough observations to solve the problem. Also, the system is intrinsically chaotic and can only be predicted within a range of parameters and will be absolutely unpredictable in some circumstances.