Thursday, February 13, 2014

Basic physics quiz for climate alarmists

1. Due to convection, does heat

a. rise
b. sink
c. hide & play go seek

2. Does the atmosphere act like panes of glass or a real greenhouse?

a. Yes
b. No
c. I don't know, but it sounds good

3. Venus is hot because

a. Greenhouse gases
b. Pressure
c. Carl Sagan said it is

4. If you shine an infrared heat lamp on a bucket of water [or blow hot air from a hair dryer on the top of the water], will the water temperature

a. Rise
b. Fall
c. Stay about the same

5. Does heat flow from cold to hot?

a. Yes
b. No
c. Only in a computer model

6. Can entropy decrease without work input?

a. Yes
b. No
c. Only in the fabled AGW "hot spot"

7. What is the maximum additional that a body 0.09C warmer can heat a colder body?

a. 0.09C
b. 3C
c. whatever an IPCC model says

9. If temperature increases, outgoing radiation from a body

a. increases proportionally
b. increases exponentially to the 4th power of temperature

10. Is a real greenhouse warmer because of

a. limiting convection
b. "trapping" radiation

11. Does AGW theory require an increase or decrease of entropy?

a. Increase
b. Decrease

12. The Stefan-Boltzmann Law applies to adiabatic greenhouse gases

a. True
b. No, only solid blackbodies

13. If the atmosphere was the same mass, but without greenhouse gases, the Earth would be an iceball

a. True
b. False

14. The temperature of all the planets can be calculated using the basic physics of AGW theory

a. True
b. False

15. If you put a larger heat sink on your microprocessor, will the temperature of the microprocessor

a. Increase
b. Decrease
c. Stay the same

16. Which is steeper, the wet or dry adiabatic lapse rate, and what does that imply?

a. Wet lapse rate with the presence of the greenhouse gas water vapor is steeper, therefore presence of the primary greenhouse gas water vapor causes warming
b. Dry lapse rate without presence of greenhouse gas water vapor is steeper, therefore presence of water vapor causes cooling
c. What's the adiabatic lapse rate?

17. According to AGW theory, CO2 is responsible for 20% of the 33C "greenhouse effect." Assuming this is true, it would imply CO2 was responsible for 6.44°C warming in 1850 [32.2*.2] and 6.6°C now [33*.2], a warming effect of 0.16°C after all feedbacks despite a 40% increase in CO2 levels. Therefore, climate sensitivity to a doubling of CO2 levels after all feedbacks may be calculated as:

a. 0.33C = ln(2)*[.16/ln(1.4)], 9 times less than claimed by the IPCC.
b. 3C as claimed by IPCC computer models

18. According to climate scientists, greenhouse gases are emitting 333 W/m2 of "back-radiation" to the Earth. If a solar cooker is pointed at the night sky, does the concentrated 333 W/m2 of back-radiation cause the temperature of the focal point of the solar cooker to 

a. Increase
b. Decrease
c. Stay the same

19. 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. This is due to

a. Greenhouse gases
b. Pressure
c. SUVs

20. If the Earth's atmosphere was 100% nitrogen [instead of 78% presently], what would the base of the troposphere be compared to the equilibrium temperature with the Sun [255K]?

a. Warmer
b. Colder
c. The same temperature as the equilibrium temperature with the Sun [255K]

21. 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. Greenhouse gases amplify the energy from the Sun 157.5 times by:

a. Violating the 1st Law of Thermodynamics 
b. The temperature at the base of the troposphere is due to 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 89.94K to 320K, regardless of the atmospheric mixture of greenhouse gases
c. What's the Stefan-Boltzmann Law?

22. Can the net heat flux be +150W/m2 from a cold body at -15C [atmosphere mean temperature] to a +15C warm body [Earth]?

a. No
b. Yes, by violating the 2nd Law of Thermodynamics
c. Yes, in a computer model

Good luck


  1. Alex Hamilton says:
    February 13, 2014 at 3:13 pm
    Continuing from my comment at 2:16pm, the inevitable conclusion is that it is not greenhouse gases that are raising the surface temperature by 33 degrees or whatever, but the fact that the thermal profile is already established by the force of gravity acting at the molecular level on all solids, liquids and gases. So the “lapse rate” is already there, and indeed we see it in the atmospheres of other planets as well, even where no significant solar radiation penetrates.

    In fact, because the “dry” lapse rate is steeper, and that is what would evolve spontaneously in a pure nitrogen and oxygen atmosphere, and because we know that the wet adiabatic lapse rate is less steep than the dry one, it is obvious that the surface temperature is not as high because of these greenhouse gases. Carbon dioxide (being one molecule in about 2,500 other molecules) has very little effect, but whatever effect it does have would thus be very minor cooling.

    I don’t care what you think you can deduce from whatever apparent correlation you think you can demonstrate from historical data, there is no valid physics which points to carbon dioxide warming.

  2. Alex Hamilton says:
    February 13, 2014 at 2:16 pm
    The assumption relating to climate sensitivity to carbon dioxide is dependent upon an assumption that there would be uniform temperatures in the troposphere in the absence of moisture and so-called greenhouse gases. GH gases are assumed to establish a “lapse rate” by radiative forcing and subsequent upward convection.

    In physics “convection” can be diffusion at the molecular level or advection or both. It is important to understand that the so-called “lapse rate” (which is a thermal gradient) evolves spontaneously at the molecular level, because the laws of physics tell us such a state is one with maximum entropy and no unbalanced energy potentials. In effect, for individual molecules the mean sum of kinetic energy and gravitational potential energy is constant.

    So this thermal gradient is in fact a state of thermodynamic equilibrium. If it is already formed in any particular region then indeed extra thermal energy absorbed at the bottom of a column of air will give the impression of warm air rising. But that may not be the case if the thermal gradient is not in thermodynamic equilibrium and is initially not as steep as it normally would be. In such a case thermal energy can actually flow downwards in order to restore thermodynamic equilibrium with the correct thermal gradient.

    What then is the “correct” thermal gradient? The equation (PE+KE)=constant amounts to MgH+MCpT=constant (where M is the mass, H is the height differential and T the temperature differential and Cp the specific heat.) So the theoretical gradient for a pure non-radiating gas is -g/Cp as is well known to be the so-called dry adiabatic lapse rate. However, thermodynamic equilibrium must also take into account the fact that radiation could be transferring energy between any radiating molecules (such as water vapour or carbon dioxide) and this has a propensity to reduce the net result for the thermal gradient. Hence we get the environmental lapse rate representing the overall state of thermodynamic equilibrium.



    Alex Hamilton says:
    February 13, 2014 at 4:53 pm
    I suppose some may doubt in my comment at 3:13pm that carbon dioxide acts in the same way as moisture in the air in reducing the lapse rate and thus reducing the greater surface warming resulting from the thermal gradient (dry lapse rate) which evolves spontaneously simply because it is the state of greatest entropy that can be accessed in the gravitational field.

    Many think, as climatologists teach their climatology students, that the release of latent heat is what reduces the lapse rate over the whole troposphere.

    Well it’s not the primary cause of any overall effect on the lapse rate. That effect is fairly homogeneous, so the mean annual lapse rate in the tropics, for example is fairly similar at most altitudes. But the release of latent heat during condensation is not equal at all altitudes and warming at all altitudes would not necessarily reduce the gradient anyway. In fact, one would expect more such warming in the lower troposphere.

    The effect of reducing the lapse rate is to cool temperatures in the lower 4 or 5Km of the troposphere and raise them in the upper troposphere, so that this all helps to retain radiative balance with the Sun, such as is observed.

    So where is all the condensation in the uppermost regions of the troposphere and why is there apparently a cooling effect from whatever latent heat is released in the lower altitudes below 4 or 5Km?

    It’s nonsense what climatologists teach themselves, and the claims made are simply not backed up by physics.

    Radiation can transfer energy from warmer to cooler molecules within the system being considered, so this transfers energy far faster than the slow process that involves molecular collisions. That is why the gradient is reduced and the reduction also happens on other planets where no water is present. That is why water molecules and suspended droplets in the atmosphere, as well as carbon dioxide and other GHG all lead to cooler surface temperatures.

  5. Konrad says:
    February 13, 2014 at 3:32 pm
    When working on a movie at the edge of the Sahara, we learnt to get equipment protected by 3pm as the dust devil’s always started to form then.

    However the issue with emergent phenomenon is far larger than just clouds or dust devils. Tropospheric convective circulation is not a constant flow. Due to the diurnal cycle, the breakaway of airmasses from the surface boundry layer stutters. Each dawn the Reyligh number for airmasses must be exceeded before they rise.

    All that doubling CO2 can do is cause breakaway to occur a few seconds earlier in the day and slightly speed up tropospheric convective circulation and the non-radiative transport of energy from the surface.

    Increased radiative gases will also cause more powerful subsidence of airmasses from altitude due to increased OLR to space.

    When their critical role in tropospheric convective circulation is taken into account it can be seen that radiative gases net effect is cooling at all concentrations above 0.0ppm.



    Alex Hamilton says:
    February 17, 2014 at 3:19 pm
    Donald C. Morton

    I dispute your statement “There is no controversy about the basic physics that adding CO2 to our atmosphere absorbs solar energy resulting in a little extra warming on top of the dominant effect of water vapor.”
    There is absolutely no empirical evidence that increasing the percentage of water vapor above any particular location leads to warmer mean temperatures. In fact a statistically significant study has shown the opposite to be the case and dry deserts do in fact have warmer mean temperatures than rain forests at equivalent altitudes and latitudes, as intuition tells us.
    From what do you suppose water vapour is raising the temperature? Are you really going to try to tell me that an isothermal troposphere (all at 255K) is a state of thermodynamic equilibrium with maximum entropy and no unbalanced energy potentials, when clearly the molecules at higher altitudes would have greater total energy because of the extra gravitational potential energy? Where Sir is your understanding of the Second Law of Thermodynamics?

    The planet Uranus provides all the evidence we need that it does not require water vapour or carbon dioxide to raise temperatures at lower altitudes in a planet’s troposphere. As you can read in Wikipedia (Uranus | Troposphere) that troposphere is about 320K at its base, despite a radiating temperature of less than 60K. So it’s not “33 degrees of warming” out there, nearly 30 times further from the Sun: it’s 250 degrees of warming due to a gravitationally-induced thermal gradient that is seen in the whole of the 350Km high troposphere. And in case you think the methane is doing the trick, it’s all concentrated in the uppermost layers where it absorbs virtually all of the solar energy and radiates it back to space. There is no convincing evidence of internal energy generation, no significant energy imbalance at the top of the atmosphere, no significant direct solar radiation reaching down into the troposphere and no surface at the base of that troposphere to absorb any radiation. Yet it’s hotter than Earth there.

  8. Alex Hamilton says:
    February 18, 2014 at 1:53 am
    We read in the article: “At least six serious problems confront the climate predictions presented in the last IPCC”

    The seventh serious problem (or perhaps it should be the zeroth) is that a study of temperature records has shown that an increase in water vapor leads to cooler mean daily maximum and minumum temperatures, not warmer.

    Water vapor does not raise the surface end of some isothermal temperature profile in the troposphere, more so in a moist area. Rather, it reduces the steeper gravitationally-induced thermal profile so that it meets the surface at a lower temperature where the wet adiabatic lapse rate prevails.

  9. Related posts from Claes Johnson:

  10. Robert Austin says:
    February 25, 2014 at 5:59 am
    Yes, it is interesting that the base of the Uranian troposphere, the nominal surface, is deemed to be at 100 bar which is the pretty much same as the surface pressure of Venus. And again we see a dense atmosphere, not greenhouse gases, responsible for the relatively high 320K temperature at this altitude.

  11. Hard test. Here's my answer to your questions:

    1) a. heat rises

    2) b., no, atm is not a greenhouse

    3) d. none of the above, Venus is not not hot because of greenhouse effect or what Carl Sagan said: it is likely hot because of electric circuit (plasma) coming from the sun.

    4) a. Rise, an IR lamp increases the temp.

    5) a. Heat always flows from hot to cool as per 2nd law of thermodynamics.

    6) b. No, entropy can only increase without work input; the natural state of the universe.

    7) a. 0.09C object can only heat another to same temp without heat input.

    9) b. increase as per Stefan-B output.

    10) a. definitely by limiting convection. "Greenhouse effect" in atmosphere does not exist.

    11) Greenhouse effect requires decrease of entropy in defiance of corollary of 2nd law of thermos.

    12) b. applies only to solid bodies, not atmosphere.

    13) a. hard to say. Pressure not mechanism for 33C warming via pressure law as you claim.

    14) b. Totally false, Jupiter is twice expected heat output of EMR input from the sun. Self-generated heat, nothing to do with gas pressure laws, but from unknown and previously unrecognized heat source. I think it's free energy generation via homopolar generator free energy effect. Present physics too limited to recognise.

    15) b. decrease due to increased heat-to-atmosphere energy sink effect.

    16) b. Dry lapse rate is shallower, hence putting lie to so-called "greenhouse effect". Anthony Watts to stupid to realise.

    17) Neither a nor b. Greenhouse effect responsible for no greenhouse warming, since greenhouse effect doesn't exist.

    18) c., since, again, no atm greenhouse effect

    19) We don't know enough to say. It's not b. as you claim. I say electric circuit from sun most likely.

    20) We don't know. I think 33C warming is due to a) electric circuit from the sun; or b) homopolar free energy generation (based on my work with DePalma and free energy generation of N-machine) of earth's supposed liquid metal core.

    21) It's a violation of what convention physics knows at present, but we don't know why...yet.