Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Jupiter emits 67% more radiation than it receives from the Sun -only explanation is the gravito-thermal greenhouse effect, not greenhouse gases

An article published at The Conversation asks Is the Red Spot shrinking superstorm evidence of climate change on Jupiter?and indeed finds that this and other observed changes are evidence of climate change (of unknown cause) on Jupiter. 

The article incidentally notes that,
"We do know that Jupiter emits 67% more radiation than it receives from the Sun. This is due to an internal heat source, which is thought to drive much of Jupiter\'s weather, including, presumably, the Great Red Spot. The heat likely is generated by the gradual contraction of matter under Jupiter's enormous gravity."
Warmists claim gravity cannot be the cause of any so-called "greenhouse effect" (or the "gravito-thermal greenhouse effect") on Earth, Jupiter, nor any other planet, yet overwhelming observational evidence for every planet in our solar system (with adequate observational data - 8 planets at this point) clearly demonstrates that surface and atmospheric temperatures are a sole function of gravity/mass/pressure and independent of greenhouse gas concentrations. 

In the case of Jupiter, a gas planet composed almost entirely of the non-IR-active, non-greenhouse gases hydrogen and helium, there is no solid planetary surface nor greenhouse gases to allegedly "trap" solar radiation, yet Jupiter has an "internal heat source" that causes a thermal enhancement ("gravito-thermal greenhouse effect") resulting in emission of 67% more radiation than it receives from the Sun. The only possible explanation of this is gravity, not radiative forcing from the Sun nor greenhouse gases, and hence the mass/pressure/gravity gravito-thermal greenhouse effect of Maxwell, Clausius, Carnot, Boltzmann, Helmholtz, Feynman, US Std Atmosphere, the HS greenhouse equation is corroborated on 9 planets.

Likewise, the ice planet Uranus has recently been observed to have storms at the top of the atmosphere radiating at blackbody temperatures hotter than required to melt steel. In addition, 
"the base of the troposphere on the planet Uranus is 320K, considerably hotter than on Earth [288K], despite being nearly 30 times further from the Sun. The base of the troposphere on Uranus is 320K at 100 bars pressure, despite the planet only receiving 3.71 W/m2 energy from the Sun. By the Stefan-Boltzmann Law, a 320K blackbody radiates 584.6 W/m2. This is 157.5 times the energy received from the Sun, due to the atmospheric temperature gradient produced within a planetary gravity field. The temperature at the base of the troposphere is determined by the ideal gas law PV=nRT, where pressure from gravity and atmospheric mass raise the temperature at the base of the troposphere from the equilibrium temperature with the Sun of Uranus of 89.94K to 320K, regardless of the atmospheric mixture of greenhouse gases."
Once again, the only possible explanation of both of these phenomena on Uranus is the Maxwell et al gravito-thermal greenhouse effect, thus bringing the number of planets for which very strong evidence exists to a total of ten. 

On Venus, we know from the NASA Fact Sheet:

Venus Atmosphere

Surface pressure: 92 bars = 92000 mbar 
Surface density: ~65. kg/m3 = 65000 g/m3
Scale height: 15.9 km
Total mass of atmosphere:  ~4.8 x 1020 kg
Average temperature: 737 K (464 C)
Diurnal temperature range: ~0 
Wind speeds: 0.3 to 1.0 m/s (surface)
Mean molecular weight: 43.45 
Atmospheric composition (near surface, by volume): 
    Major:       96.5% Carbon Dioxide (CO2), 3.5% Nitrogen (N2) 
    Minor (ppm): Sulfur Dioxide (SO2) - 150; Argon (Ar) - 70; Water (H2O) - 20;
                 Carbon Monoxide (CO) - 17; Helium (He) - 12; Neon (Ne) - 7

We can easily calculate the gravito-thermal greenhouse effect surface temperature of Venus using the ideal gas law 

T = PV/nR = 92000/(65000/43.45*0.083144621) = 739K 

which is within 2K (or 2C) of NASA observations of 737K as noted above, leaving essentially no room for any sort of Arrhenius radiative greenhouse effect on Venus. Note below also, the blackbody temperature of Venus is 184.2K, therefore mass/gravity/pressure alone has thermally enhanced the surface temperature of Venus by a factor of

737K/184.2K = 4 times

Thus, the Arrhenius radiative greenhouse effect is falsified on the basis of observations and first physical principles, and the only possible alternative greenhouse theory of Maxwell et al confirmed. 

Bulk parameters Venus vs. Earth

                                   Venus          Earth     Ratio (Venus/Earth)
Mass (1024 kg)                      4.8676         5.9726         0.815 
Volume (1010 km3)                  92.843        108.321          0.857
Equatorial radius (km)            6051.8         6378.1          0.949     
Polar radius (km)                  6051.8         6356.8          0.952
Volumetric mean radius (km)        6051.8         6371.0          0.950
Ellipticity (Flattening)            0.000          0.00335        0.0  
Mean density (kg/m3)               5243           5514            0.951 
Surface gravity (eq.) (m/s2)        8.87           9.80           0.905 
Surface acceleration (eq.) (m/s2)   8.87           9.78           0.907 
Escape velocity (km/s)             10.36          11.19           0.926
GM (x 106 km3/s2)                   0.3249         0.3986         0.815
Bond albedo                         0.90           0.306          2.94
Visual geometric albedo             0.67           0.367          1.83  
Visual magnitude V(1,0)            -4.40          -3.86             -
Solar irradiance (W/m2)            2613.9         1367.6          1.911
Black-body temperature (K)          184.2          254.3          0.724 
Topographic range (km)               15             20            0.750 
Moment of inertia (I/MR2)           0.33           0.3308         0.998
J2 (x 10-6)                         4.458       1082.63           0.004  
Number of natural satellites          0              1
Planetary ring system                No             No

Thermal enhancement or gravito-thermal greenhouse curve for 8 planets

Is shrinking superstorm evidence of climate change on Jupiter?

Is shrinking superstorm evidence of climate change on Jupiter?
Andrew Coates is Professor of Physics, Head of Planetary Science at the Mullard Space Science Laboratory, UCL. 
(CNN) It makes our most turbulent terrestrial storms look like mere pipsqueaks. But remarkable new Hubble footage shows that Jupiter\'s Great Red Spot -- an anticyclonic storm system twice the size of Earth -- is shrinking and turning orange. Is this evidence of Jovian climate change? And could the planet\'s violent storm finally be giving way to more clement conditions, at least by Jupiter\'s dramatic standards?
Jupiter, the largest planet in our solar system, is a gas giant dominated by hydrogen with some helium and smaller amounts of other gases, a mixture that resembles the composition of the early solar nebula and results in some staggeringly beautiful weather. The planet\'s cloud systems, which counter-rotate in zones and belts, with eastward and westward winds reaching 100 meters per second, are among the solar system\'s most spectacular sights and come in a blaze of different colors -- red due to ammonia, white due to ammonium hydrosulphide, and brown and blue due to additions to water ice.
A raging storm
But one of the most recognizable and persistent features of Jupiter\'s atmosphere is the Great Red Spot (GRS). Swirling around the planet\'s southern hemisphere, it covers a huge 10 degrees of latitude. (2-3 times the size of Earth)
This vast anticyclonic (high pressure) storm system has been observed raging for perhaps 350 years -- the first likely observations were reported in 1664-1655 by Robert Hooke and Gian-Dominique Cassini. It is cooler than its surroundings, rotates anticlockwise with a four to six day period, and is located between zonal winds moving at 100 meters per second.
The Great Red Spot\'s stability over such a long period of time is remarkable. A fluid instability would disappear in a few days to weeks, as in the case of the scars caused when several fragments of the comet Shoemaker-Levy 9 struck Jupiter in 1994 -- so an energy source must be powering it. Models have been suggested, but none fully explain the Great Red Spot: is it really a hurricane, a shear instability, an eddy or a solitary wave?
Inside the pressure cooker
We do know that Jupiter emits 67% more radiation than it receives from the Sun. This is due to an internal heat source, which is thought to drive much of Jupiter\'s weather, including, presumably, the Great Red Spot. The heat likely is generated by the gradual contraction of matter under Jupiter\'s enormous gravity. In the planet\'s deeper layers, for example, hydrogen enters a liquid metallic state and the pressure is 3m atmospheres.
We also know that after years of relative stability, the Great Red Spot is now changing. Since 2012, Hubble observations as part of the Outer Planets Atmospheres Legacy (OPAL) program have shown that the spot has been shrinking -- and that the rate of shrinkage has increased in recent years. The latest measurement, published by Amy Simon and colleagues, show a further reduction of 240km, although this rate of shrinkage is less than in preceding years and there are not enough observations yet to know if this is a periodic feature as seen with Neptune\'s great dark spot.
It is not just a matter of size, however. The Hubble results also show that the spot\'s shape is continuing its evolution from oval to circular, and that a new wispy filament, spiralling inwards and driven by winds of at least 150 meters per second, has developed within the Great Red Spot. The core region has also been shrinking, consistent with the overall trend, and is also becoming less distinct. It is also now deep orange in color.
Jovian climate change
There are other changes in the Jovian atmosphere, too. The Hubble observations show a new wave structure about 16 degrees north of Jupiter\'s equator, in a region of cyclones and anticyclones. It is similar to the only previous observation of such a structure by Voyager 2 in 1979 and may herald the birth of a new cyclone there.
It\'s clear that Jupiter\'s atmosphere is changing, and the Great Red Spot is evolving. The question is: why? Is the Great Red Spot fizzling out, or oscillating over time?
The jury is still out, but continued observations by the annual OPAL campaign, combined with in-situ measurements of the atmospheric dynamics and interior structure, may yet reveal intriguing new clues. The JUNO polar orbiter will also reach Jupiter in July next year and doubtless offer answers of its own.
Jupiter\'s mysterious Great Red Spot may be shrinking, then, but the world will be talking about Jupiter\'s weather for a good while yet.


  1. The thermal structure of those atmospheres certainly does involve a gravito-thermal effect but one needs to be careful because such an effect from constant mass contraction is distinct from such the gravito-thermal effect within a convectively overturning atmosphere held off the surface in hydrostatic equilibrium.

    Where there is constant contraction then kinetic energy energy is constantly being created from the compression of matter and needs to be radiated away to space over and above the energy that comes in from space.

    If there is no constant contraction but convective overturning is present then the gravito-thermal effect is simply to hold a block of energy within the atmosphere in order to fuel that ongoing overturning.

    It is wrong to suggest as some do that the thermal effect of a convectively overturning atmosphere is zero due to movement up equalling movement down.

    In reality a separate block of energy is needed to drive both uplift (kinetic energy at the base) and descent (potential energy at the top) so the two blocks of energy need to be added together and not offset against each other.

    The resultant total energy (KE+PE) required for continuing convection is what raises the surface temperature above that predicted from incoming radiation alone.

  2. I would agree in that the two blocks of energy need to be added simultaneously together and the two blocks of energy should not offset against eachother.

  3. Clearly the Jupiterians need to cut back on their methane emissions.

  4. Very true Philip! Great article thanks for sharing!

  5. "In the case of Jupiter, a gas planet composed almost entirely of the non-IR-active, non-greenhouse gases hydrogen and helium ..."
    It only takes a modest partial pressure of "greenhouse" gases to reduce IR heat transfer to a small fraction of convection, and Jupiter has plenty of methane and ammonia for that.

    As for the excess of heat being radiated, something is generating it. How much gravitational contraction vs. nuclear decay vs. something else isn't so clear.

    1. GHGs don't reduce heat transfer, they increase radiative surface area and increase convection, both of which increase cooling. Convection also dominates radiative-convective equilibrium in all planetary tropospheres.
      The excess heat is due to the thermal enhancement of mass/gravity/pressure via the Poisson Relation, not gravitational "contraction" or nuclear decay, or "something else."

    2. The effect of IR active gasses on IR heat transfer saturates easily.

      The gravity thermal enhancement you discuss can not be a source of continuing excess heat to be radiated away in a static atmosphere. Gravity performing work on the atmosphere by ongoing contraction can provide ongoing heating.

  6. "The gravity thermal enhancement you discuss can not be a source of continuing excess heat to be radiated away in a static atmosphere."

    The atmosphere is not static. Warmed air parcels at the surface are continuously adiabatically rising, expanding, and cooling, and then fall, compress and warm. This is basic meteorology known since the 1800's.


    Above post, and many others such as the Feynman posts explain how gravity continuously does work upon the atmosphere, and it is not due to "gravitational contraction" such as in a black hole.