Tuesday, November 21, 2017

From Wattsupwiththat.com

Radiative Heat Transfer by CO2 or “what’s the quality of your radiation?”

Anthony Watts / 2 days ago November 19, 2017

Note: This is a contentious subject, and I have often shied away from it because it often erupts in food fights. However, Mr. Gill is making a good-faith effort here, and asks some relevant questions that I consider worth discussing. His original essay was sans graphics, and I’ve added two relevant graphics to aid in the discussion. – Anthony


Do Wien’s Law and Quantum Physics 101 prove CO2 can’t warm anything?

Guest essay by Rod Gill

WUWT has happily demonstrated many ways CO2 fails to produce measurable warming. I’ve thought of another way. It’s so simple I must have missed something, but I simply can’t work out what. It goes like this…

Experts suggest there is a net down welling 2W/m2 of long wave infra-red radiation (LWIR) that is causing global warming. I suggest the quality of that 2W of radiation is crucial to determining whether or not it causes any atmospheric warming at all. First a few key points which I think are facts and not open to dispute.

My understanding of Thermodynamics and Radiation from CO2 is as follows:

  • In Thermodynamics, Temperature is the average kinetic energy of the particles in a body (solid or gas).
  • The temperature of a volume of air has nothing to do with the amount of radiation (sometimes mislabelled as heat by scientists) passing through it. Unless that radiation is at a frequency that can be absorbed by the air, its temperature is completely unaffected by the radiation (ignoring any convectional heating).For example at the top of Mount Everest, there is a lot of solar energy (long and short wave radiation) there when the sun is out but the temperature is still cold.
  • Different gases have different emission spectrums. For example Oxygen and Nitrogen do not absorb or emit Long Wave Infrared Radiation (LWIR) at all, so are not considered to be “Greenhouse” gases.
  • The temperature of a body (gas, liquid or solid) directly affects the wavelength of the radiation it emits and absorbs.
  • Wien’s Law defines the temperature – wave length relationship. The formula is Temperature (in degrees Kelvin) = 2898 / peak wave length in ┬Ám (micro metres). So for the average temperature of the Earth, lets call it 15C (=289 Kelvin), the wave length is 2898 / (15+274) = 2898 ÷ 289 = 10um.

The wavelength of the peak of the blackbody radiation curve decreases in a linear fashion as the temperature is increased (Wien’s displacement law). This linear variation is not evident in this kind of plot since the intensity increases with the fourth power of the temperature (Stefan- Boltzmann law). The nature of the peak wavelength change is made more evident by plotting the fourth root of the intensity. Source: http://hyperphysics.phy-astr.gsu.edu/hbase/wien.html

Carbon Dioxide’s absorption spectrum shows it absorbs LWIR at three different narrow wave lengths, sometimes called finger frequencies. Two of those wave lengths happen at temperatures too hot to exist in the atmosphere, the remaining wave length is 15um.

15um equates to 2898 ÷ 15 = 193K = -80C or -122F. In the atmosphere this temperature only occurs about 90-100Km high in the atmosphere.
Carbon Dioxide only emits and absorbs radiation at -80C from a narrow layer of atmosphere 90Km above the Earth’s surface.

So now we need to examine the quality of that 15um radiation and its ability to heat the lower atmosphere. To do this we need to understand basic Quantum Physics as taught in 101 classes to Physics and Engineering students at University. Confession: I’m an Engineer, but trained before Quantum Physics was introduced to University courses so I’m self-taught, hence my need for a sanity check. Which, dear reader, is where you come in.

The key points in basic Quantum Physics, regarding radiative heat transfer, are:

  • Molecules have one or more electrons circling them. Their orbital height is not variable, But fixed. The electrons only orbit at set altitudes, the closer to the molecule the lower the kinetic energy of the molecule and so the lower the molecule’s temperature.
  • For a molecule to “warm up” (have more kinetic energy) it needs its electrons to move to a higher, more energetic orbit. This can happen in one of two ways, get energy from a more energetic molecule via collision or receive energy via radiation.
  • For an electron to move to a higher orbit from radiation it must receive a photon with sufficient energy for an electron to reach that higher orbit.
  • Photons with too much energy raise the electron to the higher orbit then the molecule immediately re-radiates surplus energy.
  • Photons with not enough energy to raise the orbit of any of the electrons are either scattered or immediately re-radiated (effectively reflecting or scattering them) with no change to the molecule’s kinetic energy, or temperature.
  • The Photon must have a frequency that resonates with the molecule, otherwise the Photon is just scattered or reflected immediately with no temperature change to the molecule.
    Carbon dioxide can only absorb Long Wave Infrared Radiation (LWIR) energy and radiate it at 15 micro metres, a fraction of the LWR spectrum.
  • Electrons orbiting molecules of a liquid or solid need more energy to boost an electron’s orbit than electrons in a gas, so require more energetic photons again to warm them.
    Therefore it is my understanding that it is impossible for the LWIR emitted by a cold low energy CO2 molecule to have the energy required to warm any molecule in the atmosphere warmer than -80C and certainly no molecule in a liquid (EG water) or a solid body, as their electrons require even more energy.
  • LWIR from CO2 simply bounces around the atmosphere until it escapes into space and it causes no warming of the lower atmosphere at all. The energy level of that 2W of LWIR is too poor to have any affect. It needs to be closer to 10um to be energetic enough to warm anything.

So the idea of CO2 trapping heat in the atmosphere is all wrong. Yes LWIR from CO2 is retained in the atmosphere longer, but it simply bounces around until it escapes into space without causing any warming.

So am I right? I deliberately have not included any references because I want you to confirm or deny my understanding independently. If I gave you my references, which knowing the web may or may not be accurate, you might erroneously come to the same conclusions I have. However I have tried to limit my research to University papers and lecture notes hoping they are more reliable.

If I’ve got this right, CO2 caused global warming isn’t possible. If I haven’t got this right, then exactly how does LWIR radiated from CO2 warm anything?

Many thanks and please limit comments to specifics mentioned above. And if you disagree with the science above, please explain which sentences you disagree with and exactly how, at the Quantum Physics level, photons from a CO2 molecule at -80C can warm anything.

Saturday, November 11, 2017

Climate Reality (American Thinker)

November 11, 2017

Tell a Big Lie and Keep Repeating It

By Norman Rogers

If you want to tell a big lie, a good vehicle is “science.” Like a wolf hiding in a sheep’s skin, lies hide in lab coats worn by liars with Ph.Ds. We are gullible because science and scientists have a positive image. The positive image belongs to the science of the past, before the entrepreneurial idea of inventing fake catastrophes to attract vast sums of government money.

When a lie is backed by millions of government dollars, it is difficult for the truth to compete. The truth comes from scientists not corrupted by money, and from small organizations dependent on private donations. The truth is outgunned by government financed propaganda mills. The promoters of fake catastrophe depict themselves as disinterested idealists. The promoters of the truth are depicted as servants of evil industries, or as mentally disturbed crackpots.

Pravda was the official newspaper of the Soviet Union. Pravda means “official truth” in Russian. Pretty much everyone in Russia knew that there was very little truth in the pages of Pravda. But to publicly dispute the “official truth” was a very dangerous step. Often dissenters were sent to insane asylums. In the United States, as a climate skeptic, you may lose your job. Almost certainly you will be vilified as incompetent. But so far, you won’t go to prison or to an asylum, although there are calls to criminally prosecute “climate deniers.” There are also those who think that non-believers in the catastrophe are mentally ill. The obvious solution is to send the skeptics to prison or to an insane asylum. Why should we think that true believers in global warming, if they gain enough power, would be less totalitarian than communists?

Fake science prospers for a number of reasons. Investigative reporters are mostly ignorant concerning science. The average educated person is equally ignorant. Often those who do understand that something is fake don’t dare speak up because they work for bureaucracies that are promoting the fake science.

Solar power is an example of a fake idea that prospers. Billions of dollars are being spent to install solar power. It is often claimed that solar power is competitive with traditional methods of generating electricity -- a completely fake claim. There are plenty of people who have exposed the fake nature of solar power, but their side of the story rarely makes it into the popular media. It is not difficult to understand that solar power has severe problems. After all, it doesn’t work at night. If you mention that fact to a believer in solar power he may suggest that batteries can be used to provide power at night. To refute that the argument gets a bit more complex. Batteries are exorbitantly expensive and wear out quickly. Sometimes the sun doesn’t shine in the day, in which case the battery won’t be recharged for the next night. (See here and here for more on solar power.)

If obvious, stupid lies, like the competitiveness of solar power, can gain popularity, how can more complicated lies be refuted? Frankly, I don’t know. As long as those with the potential to expose the frauds are taken in and those who are not taken in are afraid to speak, it’s hard to see how fake science can be stopped or slowed down.

I spent years going to scientific conferences, reading scientific journals and writing articles to try to expose the global warming/climate change fake science industry. I found plenty of scientists who shared my viewpoint, but most keep a low profile concerning their skepticism. Their children need to eat.

The scientists who openly oppose the climate catastrophe industry are invariably retired or otherwise occupy impregnable positions that protect them from economic retaliation. There are plenty of informed climate skeptics. You can consult a list of 1,000 such scientists that oppose global warming alarmism. There are no young and upcoming climate scientists that oppose the industry. If a young scientist opposes fake science he will be unable to remain in the scientific field. He may not be able to get a Ph.D. and he certainly can’t get a job. Remember, an entire multi-billion-dollar industry is dependent on the public credibility of fake science. Dissent is not tolerated.

The U.S. Global Change Research Program (USGCRP) is a bureaucratic edifice that the Trump administration has apparently neglected to sweep into the dustbin of history. The USGCRP is an unapologetic promoter of climate catastrophe. Its scientific credibility is nil. Its reports are filled with unsupported fantasy and cherry-picked data.

The USGCRP’s most recent report is the Fourth National Climate Assessment | Volume I. The report is nearly 500 pages long and over 100 authors, editors, contributors, etc. are listed. Although the report if filled with dubious claims, bad methodology and just plain scare stories, refuting the report page by page is an impossible task. It is much easier to make wild claims than it is to explain why these claims are fantasies or even to point out reasons for skepticism. Many scientists have criticized this report as deceptive, politicized and containing outright lies. See, for example: here, here, here, here, here and here.

The USGCRP report gives away the game because the “key findings” are based on the “authors’ expert judgment of the synthesis of the assessed literature.” In other words the report is nothing more than the authors supposedly expert judgment. If the authors’ expert judgment does not predict a climate catastrophe, then there is no need for the report and the authors would soon be unemployed.

Predicting the future climate of the Earth by using computer models is not solid science. The predictions are subject to manipulation and uncertainty. Predictions are made by averaging the results from models that don’t agree with each other, and that don’t even use the same climate histories to calibrate the models. At best the methodology is highly dubious, at worst the methodology is simply a pseudoscientific smokescreen designed to produce a predetermined result. The output of the models, in the words of an important scientist, bear no resemblance to the actual climate of the Earth. Yet, to a layman reading the impressive and voluminous reports, it may seem that climate prediction is on a par with using computers to predict eclipses.

Mother Nature is not cooperating with fake global warming science because the Earth has failed to warm for the last two decades. That simple fact is obscured by the propaganda of the climate catastrophe industry.

Back in 2011 I attended several meetings of the Federal Advisory Committee for the USGCRP when the previous report, published in 2013, was in preparation. I wrote an article detailing the fake nature of the advisory committee. Federal advisory committees are supposed to represent a wide spectrum of views, but this committee was specially selected to support a predetermined outcome. In any case, the committee had no interest in discussing, much less disputing, the global warming catastrophe theory. The committee was only interested in the best way to present propaganda supporting the catastrophe theory.

Opinion on global warming/climate catastrophe is split between Democrats and Republicans. The Democrats generally buy into global warming. The green part of their electoral base represented by fanatical believer organizations, like the Sierra Club, practically forces democrat politicians to preach climate catastrophe. The Republicans are generally skeptical, but sometimes favor green policies such as solar power or wind power. A few politicians, such as Ted Cruz, actually show glimmers of understanding the scientific issues.

As the Italian philosopher Wilfredo Pareto pointed out, people form their opinions based on passion. Resort to logic and data is basically window dressing to support their previously adopted opinions. That’s why it is so difficult to make ideological conversions by means of logical argument.

Scientists are supposed to be different and form their opinions based on logical analysis. But catastrophe theories are the geese that lay golden eggs. If a school of scientists can invent a catastrophe theory they will be showered with government money. After all, it is the government’s job to prevent catastrophes. There are plenty of scientists for whom science trumps money, but for the important bureaucrat scientists that exercise power and run things, money trumps science by a mile.

Norman Rogers writes often on environmental and political issues. He has a website.

If you want to tell a big lie, a good vehicle is “science.” Like a wolf hiding in a sheep’s skin, lies hide in lab coats worn by liars with Ph.Ds. We are gullible because science and scientists have a positive image. The positive image belongs to the science of the past, before the entrepreneurial idea of inventing fake catastrophes to attract vast sums of government money.

When a lie is backed by millions of government dollars, it is difficult for the truth to compete. The truth comes from scientists not corrupted by money, and from small organizations dependent on private donations. The truth is outgunned by government financed propaganda mills. The promoters of fake catastrophe depict themselves as disinterested idealists. The promoters of the truth are depicted as servants of evil industries, or as mentally disturbed crackpots.

Pravda was the official newspaper of the Soviet Union. Pravda means “official truth” in Russian. Pretty much everyone in Russia knew that there was very little truth in the pages of Pravda. But to publicly dispute the “official truth” was a very dangerous step. Often dissenters were sent to insane asylums. In the United States, as a climate skeptic, you may lose your job. Almost certainly you will be vilified as incompetent. But so far, you won’t go to prison or to an asylum, although there are calls to criminally prosecute “climate deniers.” There are also those who think that non-believers in the catastrophe are mentally ill. The obvious solution is to send the skeptics to prison or to an insane asylum. Why should we think that true believers in global warming, if they gain enough power, would be less totalitarian than communists?

Fake science prospers for a number of reasons. Investigative reporters are mostly ignorant concerning science. The average educated person is equally ignorant. Often those who do understand that something is fake don’t dare speak up because they work for bureaucracies that are promoting the fake science.

Solar power is an example of a fake idea that prospers. Billions of dollars are being spent to install solar power. It is often claimed that solar power is competitive with traditional methods of generating electricity -- a completely fake claim. There are plenty of people who have exposed the fake nature of solar power, but their side of the story rarely makes it into the popular media. It is not difficult to understand that solar power has severe problems. After all, it doesn’t work at night. If you mention that fact to a believer in solar power he may suggest that batteries can be used to provide power at night. To refute that the argument gets a bit more complex. Batteries are exorbitantly expensive and wear out quickly. Sometimes the sun doesn’t shine in the day, in which case the battery won’t be recharged for the next night. (See here and here for more on solar power.)

If obvious, stupid lies, like the competitiveness of solar power, can gain popularity, how can more complicated lies be refuted? Frankly, I don’t know. As long as those with the potential to expose the frauds are taken in and those who are not taken in are afraid to speak, it’s hard to see how fake science can be stopped or slowed down.

I spent years going to scientific conferences, reading scientific journals and writing articles to try to expose the global warming/climate change fake science industry. I found plenty of scientists who shared my viewpoint, but most keep a low profile concerning their skepticism. Their children need to eat.

The scientists who openly oppose the climate catastrophe industry are invariably retired or otherwise occupy impregnable positions that protect them from economic retaliation. There are plenty of informed climate skeptics. You can consult a list of 1,000 such scientists that oppose global warming alarmism. There are no young and upcoming climate scientists that oppose the industry. If a young scientist opposes fake science he will be unable to remain in the scientific field. He may not be able to get a Ph.D. and he certainly can’t get a job. Remember, an entire multi-billion-dollar industry is dependent on the public credibility of fake science. Dissent is not tolerated.

The U.S. Global Change Research Program (USGCRP) is a bureaucratic edifice that the Trump administration has apparently neglected to sweep into the dustbin of history. The USGCRP is an unapologetic promoter of climate catastrophe. Its scientific credibility is nil. Its reports are filled with unsupported fantasy and cherry-picked data.

The USGCRP’s most recent report is the Fourth National Climate Assessment | Volume I. The report is nearly 500 pages long and over 100 authors, editors, contributors, etc. are listed. Although the report if filled with dubious claims, bad methodology and just plain scare stories, refuting the report page by page is an impossible task. It is much easier to make wild claims than it is to explain why these claims are fantasies or even to point out reasons for skepticism. Many scientists have criticized this report as deceptive, politicized and containing outright lies. See, for example: here, here, here, here, here and here.

The USGCRP report gives away the game because the “key findings” are based on the “authors’ expert judgment of the synthesis of the assessed literature.” In other words the report is nothing more than the authors supposedly expert judgment. If the authors’ expert judgment does not predict a climate catastrophe, then there is no need for the report and the authors would soon be unemployed.

Predicting the future climate of the Earth by using computer models is not solid science. The predictions are subject to manipulation and uncertainty. Predictions are made by averaging the results from models that don’t agree with each other, and that don’t even use the same climate histories to calibrate the models. At best the methodology is highly dubious, at worst the methodology is simply a pseudoscientific smokescreen designed to produce a predetermined result. The output of the models, in the words of an important scientist, bear no resemblance to the actual climate of the Earth. Yet, to a layman reading the impressive and voluminous reports, it may seem that climate prediction is on a par with using computers to predict eclipses.

Mother Nature is not cooperating with fake global warming science because the Earth has failed to warm for the last two decades. That simple fact is obscured by the propaganda of the climate catastrophe industry.

Back in 2011 I attended several meetings of the Federal Advisory Committee for the USGCRP when the previous report, published in 2013, was in preparation. I wrote an article detailing the fake nature of the advisory committee. Federal advisory committees are supposed to represent a wide spectrum of views, but this committee was specially selected to support a predetermined outcome. In any case, the committee had no interest in discussing, much less disputing, the global warming catastrophe theory. The committee was only interested in the best way to present propaganda supporting the catastrophe theory.

Opinion on global warming/climate catastrophe is split between Democrats and Republicans. The Democrats generally buy into global warming. The green part of their electoral base represented by fanatical believer organizations, like the Sierra Club, practically forces democrat politicians to preach climate catastrophe. The Republicans are generally skeptical, but sometimes favor green policies such as solar power or wind power. A few politicians, such as Ted Cruz, actually show glimmers of understanding the scientific issues.

As the Italian philosopher Wilfredo Pareto pointed out, people form their opinions based on passion. Resort to logic and data is basically window dressing to support their previously adopted opinions. That’s why it is so difficult to make ideological conversions by means of logical argument.

Scientists are supposed to be different and form their opinions based on logical analysis. But catastrophe theories are the geese that lay golden eggs. If a school of scientists can invent a catastrophe theory they will be showered with government money. After all, it is the government’s job to prevent catastrophes. There are plenty of scientists for whom science trumps money, but for the important bureaucrat scientists that exercise power and run things, money trumps science by a mile.

Norman Rogers writes often on environmental and political issues. He has a website.