Svalgaard #5

Continued from here.

605 Comments

  1. Marshall
    Posted Apr 7, 2008 at 4:57 PM | Permalink

    I still maintain that the Sun was the primary culprit of warming from the cooling periods end (in the seventies) to 1998. Someday this will come to light as being crystal clear. For now I suppose a high % of GHG are being held to be the primary crock I mean crook. Sorry, Steve.

  2. Posted Apr 7, 2008 at 5:15 PM | Permalink

    1 (Marshall):

    I still maintain that the Sun…

    This may be a deeply felt belief that you are certainly entitled to and which may be shared by many, but is not science and cannot therefore be a subject of discussion here.

  3. Marshall
    Posted Apr 7, 2008 at 5:25 PM | Permalink

    Mr. Svalgaard,

    what if any are the scientific proofs for another upcomming cooling period (Suns currents slowing down ect…)?

    I thank you for reminding me to maintain a scientific, objective mind, I forgot myself. I swear to use only science in the future.

  4. jae
    Posted Apr 7, 2008 at 5:37 PM | Permalink

    2, Leif: I think it IS scientific to say that the Earth has seen major temperature swings long before anthroprogenic effects were possible. And as far as I know, it’s pretty certain that the primary source of energy for the Earth, for the past few millenia, at least, was the Sun. So, either the sun caused the swings or the relative positions of the Earth and Sun caused the changes, or both. It is unlikely that CO2 caused the past changes, so there is no certainty that CO2 is causing the current warming. I just get tired of seeing the argument that “nothing but AGW could explain the current warming.” Agreed?

  5. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Apr 7, 2008 at 5:50 PM | Permalink

    It is unscientific to say it’s the sun or not, as much as it is to say it’s anything or not. I comment on the reasons why it probably isn’t the “GHG” based upon the evidence we have at this point. However, it’s also inconclusive.

    I contend there is no scientific answer, because don’t really have anything that is falsifiable (and maybe not even much that’s empirical, other than what I consider to be inconclusive (or non-quantifyable) observations. Well, we do have what Lucia has up about the IPCC projections. And they are only computer simulations, hardly science.

    FWIW: Long-lived IR absorbing gases driving energy level rise?

  6. Posted Apr 7, 2008 at 6:02 PM | Permalink

    3,4 (Marshall,jae): what is not scientific is the “I maintain”. And there are no proofs of anything. You can present arguments one way or the other, that is fine, but [at least in my book] “I maintain” is not a valid argument. Now, maybe all this is splitting hairs, and people mean different things when they same the same things, and that is perfectly excusable, as we are all just human, but is does make serious discourse more difficult.
    And jae, I do agree that it is not clear that human influences caused ALL the changes that occur. Certainly CO2 and CH4 and land-use cause SOME change, and maybe even the Sun. How much is a different matter, and can [or even should] we do anything about it is yet another matter. For the zillionth time, I argue that the Sun has varied less than thought and that people that claim they understand how all this hangs together take that into account and show me that they can accommodate a less-changing sun and all still makes sense.

  7. Marshall
    Posted Apr 7, 2008 at 6:22 PM | Permalink

    Mr. Salgaard,

    undoubtedly we are learning more about the sun. What in your opinion is the frontier work showing the suns relation to GW and or cooling ?

  8. Geoff Sherrington
    Posted Apr 7, 2008 at 6:38 PM | Permalink

    Leif, re # 557, 560, reversal of magnetic poles?

    Thank you for you prompt answer. You are a very busy person. I snipped a lot of my son’s writing. If the Sun is flipping there might be changes in solar wind properties etc. Geologically these flips are rather sudden on Earth. I know the earth’s field is in nanoTeslas and coupled heating is not on, but I was quoting.

    I am not well read in solar matters and posted in case the solar flip observation was both correct and significant. Please snip if not meaningful.

  9. Posted Apr 7, 2008 at 7:00 PM | Permalink

    7 (Marshall):

    frontier work showing the suns relation to GW and or cooling

    most work on this subject is poor and is considered to be on the fringes of ‘mainstream’ science. Recent work that is above average include this by Tung and Camp.

  10. Posted Apr 7, 2008 at 7:03 PM | Permalink

    8 (Geoff): the Sun does flip every ~11 years, but this flip does not have any measurable climate effect [that I know of].

  11. Posted Apr 7, 2008 at 7:29 PM | Permalink

    Re: #9.

    The abstract of the Tung paper states, “The problem of solar-cycle response is interesting in its own right, for it is one of the rare natural global phenomena that have not yet been successfully explained.” This is a rather amazing statement.

  12. Posted Apr 7, 2008 at 7:37 PM | Permalink

    11 (MikeS): the statement is, perhaps, amazing, but I consider it true [without endorsing the paper]. Another unexplained phenomenon that has been known for at least 150 years [in contrast to the solar-climate connection that is still under debate] is the semiannual variation of geomagnetic activity.

  13. steven mosher
    Posted Apr 7, 2008 at 7:48 PM | Permalink

    Dr S. every morning at 5am before the sun comes up, I read your thread.
    It’s like coffee for my brian. or brain if I knew how to spell.

  14. Dennis Wingo
    Posted Apr 7, 2008 at 8:09 PM | Permalink

    (#9) Leif

    Very Interesting. There are several understated digs in that paper. Here is one:

    Currently no GCM has succeeded in simulating a solar-cycle response of the observed amplitude near the surface. Clearly a correct simulation of a global-scale warming on decadal time scale is needed before predictions into the future on multi-decadal scale can be accepted with confidence.

  15. Posted Apr 7, 2008 at 8:15 PM | Permalink

    14 (Dennis): as I said “it is above average”. I’m not sure I buy it, though. As I have remarked elsewhere:
    “Camp and Tung note that “there is a recurrent warming of the earth by the solar cycle. The periodic nature of the phenomenon allows the use of more sophisticated signal processing methods to establish the reality of the signal”. There is also a strictly periodic [hence known forcing] variation during each year of 90/4 W/m2 due to the eccentricity of Earth’s orbit. This variation, being strictly periodic, and 100 times larger than the solar cycle variation should allow for even more sophisticated analysis. It would seem to me that unless we can model and understand the response to this very large signal, it is premature to look for the much weaker solar cycle signal.”

    13 (steve): the above is more stimulus for your brian. Thanks for the kind words.

  16. Marshall
    Posted Apr 7, 2008 at 9:02 PM | Permalink

    Dr. Salgaard,

    How much weight is given, by you, to proxy data showing the record we have of the sun. And can you explain why your opinion is so ? Thanx.

  17. Posted Apr 7, 2008 at 9:28 PM | Permalink

    16 (Marshall): without me knowing which proxies you have in mind, I’ll assume that you mean the TSI reconstructions. From modern data [since 1978] we have found that the TSI correlates well with the number [or even better with the area] of sunspots. Since we have such records going back 400 years, that gives us a means of reconstructing TSI. Other proxies are geomagnetic activity. There we have records back to the 1840s; these allow us to reconstruct the solar wind properties. Cosmic rays are modulated by solar magnetism and trees and ice cores allow us to model [and infer] the cosmic ray intensity back millennea. From comparison with modern data we can infer solar wind properties. Cosmic rays also create radioactive Titanium 44 in meteorites, from that we can infer the cosmic ray intensity by analysing fallen meteorites where we know when they fell. The longer we go back the more uncertain all of these become. In the future we might be able to infer TSI from temperatures in boreholes on the Moon. Once we can visit Mars and the moons of Jupiter and Saturn a wealth of new proxies open up, so the future looks good.

  18. MarkR
    Posted Apr 8, 2008 at 2:13 AM | Permalink

    I probably missed the answer to this, but what is the basis for the disproving the suns relationship with temperature, if the the whole recent “adjusted” instrumental temperature record is now being called into question, along with the “proxy reconstructions” of longer ago? What is not being correlated with what? For example, if it turns out that there has been no real increase in average temperature since the 30’s (as in the US data), and the current adjusted data is found to be distorted upwards?

  19. Posted Apr 8, 2008 at 5:08 AM | Permalink

    18 (MarkR): What is being ‘disproven’ is the notion that a change is due to just one thing. There are many interlocking causes. And many of the correlations are spurious to begin with. As to discussing which is more spurious than the other, well…

  20. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 8, 2008 at 8:00 AM | Permalink

    15 (Leif)

    unless we can model and understand the response to this very large signal, (90/4 W/m2 due to the eccentricity of Earth’s orbit) it is premature to look for the much weaker solar cycle signal.

    The following analysis incorporates the orbital eccentricity factor. It is a crucial element in identifying the connection between solar activity, anomalies in the tropical troposphere and the El Nino occurrences that represent warming of the oceans, arguably the dominant factor driving recent temperature change.

    First a word on climate dynamics. The ocean represents the largest dynamic sink for heat on the planet. The albedo effect represented by clouds is a powerful mediator of solar radiation. Change in atmospheric temperature directly affects dew point and cloud formation. This can occur via seasonal land mass heating and is observable even on a daily basis. Relative humidity is highest at night and diminishes during the day. A heating ocean in combination with turbulent air will eventually supply so much water vapour to the atmosphere as to enhance the Earths albedo and reduce the penetration of solar radiation to the surface regardless of the level of external irradiance. A La Nina event is therefore an inevitable consequence of surface heating as demonstrated by the event following the pronounced El Nino of 1997-8. If the sun, via energetic short wave radiation can heat the atmosphere it will directly lower albedo and feed warmth to the oceans. The immediate response in terms of outgoing long wave radiation and ocean heat gain depends upon the ratio of land and sea, much greater in the northern Hemisphere than the Southern. These dynamics are amply demonstrated in the different response of the northern and southern hemisphere to irradiance variations that are due to orbital eccentricity.

    This analysis relates to the period of satellite observations of the suns irradiance at the top of the Earths atmosphere and also of the temperature of the mid to lower troposphere.

    1. FIGURES A B and C: The data presented here does not support the proposition that there is a relationship between the solar cycles as such and temperatures at the surface of the Earth or in the atmosphere.
    2. Figure C: We observe that mean temperatures in the NH troposphere peak in June-July. Southern hemisphere temperatures peak in January- February. SH peaks are reliably 4-5 Kelvin less than NH. This is unexpected because in January the Earth is at its perihelion and closer to the sun. Close proximity reputedly brings (an estimated 90 watts per square metre/4) additional radiation in January over the June total. We observe that the temperature is 4-5K short of the July total. Why? It is very likely that the waters of the SH strongly absorb the energy from the sun and mute the atmospheric temperature response. On the other hand the predominance of land in the NH means that this hemisphere has little heat storage capacity. It acts as a reflector/ emitter regularly reaching midsummer mean temperature 4-5 Kelvin greater than the southern hemisphere. Logically this is associated with a known 3% fall in global cloud in July. Most of this reduction must be in the NH.
    3. FIGURES A, C: It is notable that peaks in irradiance and magnetic impulses are strongly associated with the aphelion in the Earths orbit around the sun, occurring in the Dec- February period. Temperature anomaly peaks occur at this time in the tropical troposphere in 11 of 16 years. Anomaly peaks occurring outside the December to February period were just five in number. Energetic short wave radiation peaks with solar activity. The Erythermal UV index is much greater in SH summer than in NH summer at comparable latitudes.
    4. FIGURES A, B, C: The anomalous peaks in temperature in the tropical troposphere drive the El Nino phenomenon in the Pacific (and contemporary temperature change at low latitudes around the globe). El Nino heating events are therefore strongly related to anomalous peaks in solar irradiance that occur in mid-summer in the SH. Global anomalies are known to lag tropical anomalies and NH temperature responds to energy absorption in the SH. This can be seen in the seasonal peak temperature in the NH following the 1997-1998 El Nino marked in FIG C.
    5. FIGURES B, C.:Anomalies in the tropical troposphere are unrelated to pulses in outgoing long wave radiation in NH summer. If the greenhouse effect were active, anomalous peaks in mean temperature in the troposphere would be expected to manifest, as time wears on. No such phenomenon is apparent.

    Interpretation
    The mean temperature of the troposphere is generally driven by the distribution of land and sea. However the temperature in the atmosphere responds to solar influences. First it is observed that anomaly peaks are rarely associated with northern hemisphere summer when solar activity is weak. Secondly they are frequently apparent without the appearance of a simultaneous anomaly at the surface. Thirdly, it is apparent that the range in temperature in the troposphere is much greater than at the surface. This pattern is consistent with the notion that that temperature in the troposphere responds directly to energetic constituents within the spectrum of solar irradiance and/or the solar wind that are manifestly greatest at the perihelion, not because the Earth is closer to the sun at that time but due to the dominant conjunction of the perihelion with sunspot activity. This very likely directly influences the Earths albedo which is primarily mediated by the clouds within the atmosphere. Any secular trend in temperature is therefore related to change in albedo as mediated by change in irradiance from the sun.

    The hypothesis is consistent with the observed pattern of temperature change in the two hemispheres. It is the Northern Hemisphere where temperatures have increased in recent times. Warming of the NH is associated with anomalous heating of the oceans (El Nino events) and the northwards transfer of that warmth by ocean currents. Antarctica is a large area with high albedo dominated by very cold descending air masses in all seasons. The seasonal doubling of surface area via ice accretion and the strength of the west wind drift together with the distribution of the land masses means that tropical warmth does not readily travel to high latitudes in the SH. The current fall in sea surface temperatures in the SH will feed into NH temperatures. The NH is dependent upon warmth garnered in the SH ocean.

    What follows is more poetry than science but it is nevertheless accurate so far as the timing of events is concerned, as revealed in the figures above. I pretend no expertise in the mathematics of gravitational attraction or knowledge of the gradients in density at the periphery of the solar furnace.

    Once a year the sun must fetch planet Earth from the furthest extremity of its orbit and in doing so it exerts a force that speeds the Earths return. The effort costs the sun some rearrangement of the finely ordered patterns of interaction at the least dense periphery of its vast fusion furnace. Extra energy is radiated in the spectrum that attacks atmospheric molecules and this evaporates the Earths protective, reflective cover of moisture droplets.

    Having retrieved the Earth the sun appears to speedily relax and the disturbance to its furnace abruptly ends, until six months later the wayward Earth must be fetched again.

    If the Sun must fetch all its orbiting bodies at the same time the disturbance to its steady state reactions must be accordingly greater. Hence the sunspot cycle waxes and wanes.

    The Earth has a built in resistance to heating. The water content of land and sea absorbs heat in evaporation and raises the water vapour content of the atmosphere. Convective forces raise the air through the thin atmosphere to heights where temperatures are exceedingly cold and the water vapour readily condenses providing a barrier against the admission of further solar radiation. The sea saw action of heating and cooling that occurs within the solar cycle has the capacity to heat or cool the oceans, the great repository of stored energy that exists within the Earth system.

    Lastly, consider the two large cloud free area that exist over the SH oceans, the very low level of cloud that exists over Australia, Southern Africa and Antarctica and ask yourself why? Why is the erythermal UV index so high in southern hemisphere summer? What are the likely consequences for heat acquisition by the oceans of the regularly heightened sunspot activity in January? Why is outgoing long wave radiation low in cloud free zones in the Pacific during an El Nino event and why is it higher in the cloudy areas? Why, during this current deep La Nina has it been raining so hard in Australia, and South Africa? Why is there currently so much cloud in the tropics of the Southern Hemisphere? Then, after dealing with all that, you should be able to answer the question of just how long this La Nina will last.

  21. jae
    Posted Apr 8, 2008 at 9:40 PM | Permalink

    Did Leif give up on Erl?

  22. Posted Apr 8, 2008 at 9:52 PM | Permalink

    21 (jae): his

    If the Sun must fetch all its orbiting bodies at the same time the disturbance to its steady state reactions must be accordingly greater. Hence the sunspot cycle waxes and wanes.

    kinda did him in.

  23. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 8, 2008 at 10:36 PM | Permalink

    22 (Leif)(Jae)(anyone)

    Other interpretations of the data are of great interest to me and may be of interest to others. What causes the marked temperature anomalies in the tropical troposphere to occur so consistently in the December-February period? Why the spurt in irradiance at the same time? Is this a co-incidence? Is it reasonable to deny a relationship because our understanding of the physics says that something should not happen?

    Perhaps we should all go join the flat Earth society?

  24. Posted Apr 8, 2008 at 11:21 PM | Permalink

    23 (Erl):

    Perhaps we should all go join the flat Earth society?

    You will fit right in :-)
    But seriously, if it is so that there really is a true annual wave in TSI [reduced to 1 AU], and that is not established by lining up wiggles, then there are several mundane possibilities: the calculation of the distance to the Sun is slightly wrong, the programmer forgot to square the distance, there are systematic errors because of the ‘aspect’ of the satellite [light reflected off surfaces or the atmosphere somehow entering the instrument, etc]. Something like this is more likely than strange physics or astrology.

  25. Marshall
    Posted Apr 9, 2008 at 12:07 AM | Permalink

    Mr Svalgaard,

    So then what of the many facets of GW are the most critical, in regards to sheading light on the issue. If it is the same main facets of GW,AGW and the suns energy; what two aspects of these are the most noteworthy . I apoligise if most here know this already I just want to it from you. I am happy to dialog with a scientific figure like you.

    John Casey and SSRC

    http://www.redicecreations.com/article.php?id=2659

    Dr. Oleg Sorokhtin highly credentialed Russian scientist

    http://www.americanthinker.com/blog/…global_co.html

    These scientists are predicting a coming minimum with extremely cold temperatures globally. They say it may start as soon as 2012.

    What do you think of these two scientists and what they espouse ?

  26. Posted Apr 9, 2008 at 12:15 AM | Permalink

    25 (Marshall): John Casey is not a scientist and has no credibility. Try to google him. Your second link is dead, so I can’t comment, although I know that Oleg Sorokhtin is promoting a coming ice age..

  27. Raven
    Posted Apr 9, 2008 at 12:26 AM | Permalink

    Leif,

    Can you quantify the effect of orbital forcings over a period of decades or centuries? I realize they are small but 0.1% of something that 100 times larger than any other forcing would still be significant.

  28. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 9, 2008 at 4:09 AM | Permalink

    24 (Leif)
    References to ‘astrology’ are inappropriate. I am simply looking at the data and asking in the words of Julius Sumner Miller “why is it so?” It’s simply conjecture. All possibilities must be canvassed, even the forbidden ones. I can’t think of another explanation. Can you? That irradiance record is simply another way of looking at sunspot activity or changes in very short wave radiation. Within the irradiance record is concealed the possibility of very short wave radiation reaching the surface of the Earth itself.

    But seriously, if it is so that there really is a true annual wave in TSI [reduced to 1 AU], and that is not established by lining up wiggles, then there are several mundane possibilities: the calculation of the distance to the Sun is slightly wrong, the programmer forgot to square the distance, there are systematic errors because of the ‘aspect’ of the satellite [light reflected off surfaces or the atmosphere somehow entering the instrument, etc]. Something like this is more likely than strange physics or astrology.

    Let us be clear about what you are saying here. Are you suggesting that there is a systematic bias in the instrumentation that tends to produce peaks in irradiance in January? Is that same bias also affecting the magnetical model, the optical model and the 1336.32 record (whatever that is)? Does the programmer always have the same problem in January?

    All the lining up process is doing is to make sure that the dates match across the graphs. It simply enables us to say that a particular anomaly in the troposphere can be associated with a certain mean temperature, a certain reading in the SOI, and a certain state of irradiance because they occurred at the same time. If you are dealing with multiple variables it’s the only way you can show the relationships on a flat piece of paper.

    As for ‘wiggles’, well, I would hardly call the increase in irradiance in 2002 a wiggle. It’s important to acknowledge that it is associated with a fundamental change in the composition of the irradiance, with perhaps a 30% increase in the very energetic component that interacts directly with the atmosphere and a violent increase in the solar wind that interacts with the ionosphere.

    On the scale of things people have got to understand that the atmosphere is also not much more than a ‘wiggle’. It is not even skin deep and yet it reduces radiation by about 50%.

    Scale IS important, both in terms of the stimulus, the medium and the response. We are here dealing with a strongly amplified response due to a fundamental change in the reflectivity of the atmosphere.

    You see the amplifier working strongly in the case of the northern hemisphere response to REDUCED irradiance in July (Earth at aphelion). Reduce irradiance by 15 watts in 1367 but the cloud cover retreats because of the reflectivity of the land masses and temperature RISES by 5 degrees! Where is the difficulty?

    Those large cloud free areas in the southern hemisphere are not simply due to rain shadow effects. In the case of the Southern Hemisphere there is an increase in irradiance in January because the Earth is at perihelion (3% closer to the sun) and has the capacity to take full advantage of it because there is ocean underneath. So, more irradiance and a much muted mean temperature response (5 degrees less than the NH mean in midsummer). But, critically January is the time when the big temperature anomalies occur so consistently. Does this not ring a little bell?

    Are the big temperature anomalies recorded for January also the result of programmer error or instrumental bias? Is there also an error in reading the barometric pressure in Darwin and Tahiti?

  29. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 9, 2008 at 4:19 AM | Permalink

    21 (Jae)
    Let’s not give up on Leif. (Where do you find those smiley’s?)

  30. jae
    Posted Apr 9, 2008 at 5:57 AM | Permalink

    Look at Figure 4 here (peer-reviewed paper). Why is the solar flare index so different during SC 23?

  31. Posted Apr 9, 2008 at 6:59 AM | Permalink

    28,29 (Erl): To make a smiley: type : – ) but without the spaces between “:” and “-” and “)”. Like this :-)
    Where to start?

    It’s simply conjecture. All possibilities must be canvassed, even the forbidden ones. I can’t think of another explanation. Can you?

    that we cannot pinpoint another explanation does not mean there isn’t any. And I can think of several as I indicated. Where it becomes astrology is when it is surmised that it is the Earth alone that is causing the wiggles. Were it tidal forces [i.e. science] Venus would raise wiggles 2.2 times as large [2.2=0.815/0.72^3] with a period of 225 days, which are not seen. So, please, no more of this, lest you wish Steve M to snip you.

    Are you suggesting that there is a systematic bias in the instrumentation that tends to produce peaks in irradiance in January?

    No, not saying that there is, but that this is one of the things to look at. Here is a quote from an email from R. Viereck [producer of UV MGII-index]: “We have known that NOAA 16 SBUV has been drifting a bit but until now, we did not realize how bad it had gotten. The problem is that the satellite orbit has processed so far that the incident angle into the SBUV is too large and it is affecting the values.”. So, yes, instrumental bias should be looked at.

    Does the programmer always have the same problem in January?

    No, he commits the error once and the computer perpetuates it. Do these things happen? Yes, the important f10.7 radio flux [proxy for solar activity] also has an annual variation which has to be corrected for. Due to a programming [or version control] error the f10.7 data before ~1965 has been corrected for this variation twice.

    particular anomaly in the troposphere can be associated with a certain mean temperature, a certain reading in the SOI, and a certain state of irradiance because they occurred at the same time.

    occurring at the same time does not make an association, just a coincidence, and a selective one at that.

    As for ‘wiggles’, well, I would hardly call the increase in irradiance in 2002 a wiggle

    The increase was 0.6 W/m2 out of 1367 W/m2, i.e. 0.00044 of the whole. That qualifies as a wiggle in my book.

    Reduce irradiance by 15 watts in 1367 but the cloud cover retreats because of the reflectivity of the land masses and temperature RISES by 5 degrees! Where is the difficulty?

    First, the ’15’ should be 90 [if you want to compare with 1367], so 90 W/m2 out of 1367 raises the temperature 5 degrees, and 0.6 W/m2 would then raise the temperature 0.6/90*5 = 0.03 degrees; that I can live with. And it is no good to say the 0.6 W is amplified but the 90 is not. They both occur on the same time scale [~one year] and a photon is a photon and will amplified [or whatever] the same as all the other photons, unless it is a very energetic photon. And all of those are stopped high up and do not penetrate into the troposphere.

    But, critically January is the time when the big temperature anomalies occur so consistently. Does this not ring a little bell?

    Yes, it says that the oceans react on a much longer time scale than the land masses in the Northern Hemisphere, hence larger fluctuations [for whatever reasons] will occur in the North. And Northern winter even more so, as the temperature varies more during winter.

    Are the big temperature anomalies recorded for January also the result of programmer error or instrumental bias? Is there also an error in reading the barometric pressure in Darwin and Tahiti?

    And this one should be beneath you.

  32. cba
    Posted Apr 9, 2008 at 7:10 AM | Permalink

    28 (Erl):
    I think you need to try to find more of the spectral content information rather than TSI if you’re wanting to see possible relations that involve chemical effects such as making ozone or depositing energy here rather than there. I’m not sure there’s any good ones – ones that have high resolution – but there are some that might help segregate the wheat from the chaff. TSI just isn’t going to do it for that other than to provide total power a point in time that would be modulated according to the controlling effect of temporary chemistry changes.

  33. Posted Apr 9, 2008 at 7:11 AM | Permalink

    30 (jae): The flare index is defined as the sum of the following five components
    a) Importance of ionizing radiation as indicated by time-associated Short Wave Fade or Sudden Ionospheric Disturbance; (Scale 0-3)
    b) Importance of H-Alpha flare; (Scale 0-3)
    c) Magnitude of 10cm flux; (Characteristic of log of flux in units of 10**-22Watt/m**2/Hz)
    d) Dynamic spectrum; (Type II = 1, Continuum = 2, Type IV with duration > 10 minutes = 3)
    e) Magnitude of 200MHz flux; (Characteristic of log of flux in units of 10**-22Watt/m**2/Hz)

    Thus a bag with apples, oranges, bananas, grapes, and mangos. We have no reason to believe that this bag will scale with the other solar indices, and apparently it doesn’t.

  34. jae
    Posted Apr 9, 2008 at 7:20 AM | Permalink

    33, Leif: Yeah, but… it looks like it scaled almost perfectly with the previous two solar cycles. It just looks curious to me. :) :-)

  35. Posted Apr 9, 2008 at 7:43 AM | Permalink

    34 (jae): How does one scale one data set to another? One finds a [hopefully] linear relation [e.g. with least-squares] and then applies that transformation to one of the data sets. Now, in doing so, one can use all of the data or only a part of the data. If in making Figure 4, they have used all of the data, cycle 21 and 22 would also not fit. If you use 21 and 22 [they are very similar so one or the other or both don't matter] then you get a good fit for 21 and 22 [by definition] and will have to live with a poor one for 23. The fact that 21 and 22 fit shows that the second method was used, and hence it is no surprise that they fit. If one applies a little thought, curious things often seem less surprising.

  36. Ian Ward
    Posted Apr 9, 2008 at 8:02 AM | Permalink

    28 Erl

    Apparent Relations Between Solar Activity and Solar Tides Caused by the Planets

    Ching-Cheh Hung
    Glenn Research Center, Cleveland, Ohio

    http://gltrs.grc.nasa.gov/Citations.aspx?id=330

    The paper is downloadable from the bottom of the page at NASA.

    It takes two(or more) to tango.

  37. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 9, 2008 at 8:57 AM | Permalink

    31 Leif

    Yes, it says that the oceans react on a much longer time scale than the land masses in the Northern Hemisphere, hence larger fluctuations [for whatever reasons] will occur in the North. And Northern winter even more so, as the temperature varies more during winter.

    Sorry but this is not meaningful for me. What are the oceans reacting to? What is the time scale? How is the heat gained?

    occurring at the same time does not make an association, just a coincidence, and a selective one at that.

    However, when the phenomena occur together with monotonous regularity, and one is known to relate to the behaviour of the other in terms of causation (planetary waves, atmospheric chemistry or whatever) it might be useful to re-examine our understanding of the matter so as to be sure that our formula for the relationship is correct. The proportional increase in irradiance can not be used to predict the temperature response. For a start the ‘irradiance’ varies strongly in composition. Secondly, entirely seperate variables mediate the degree of the response and one should not pretend that we can currently quantify the relationship properly in all the different circumstances that it can manifest. These third , fourth and fifth variables create entirely different circumstances where the response will be different. At the perihelion the increased irradiance contains elements that will enhance the apeture of the atmospheric window. At the aphelion those elements are less evident and yet an entirely seperate variable that has nothing to do with the irradiance at all has the effect of opening the atmospheric window even wider to drive an increase in temperature at a lower level of irradiance. If one applies your formula in the way that you are describing one should expect a lower temperature in the northern hemisphere summer than is seen in the the Southern Hemisphere summer but the reverse is in fact what actually happens.

    Its not quite as simple as you suggest. The frequency of the occurence of these temperature anomalies at the same time of the year should ring a little bell. The intervals are far from random.

  38. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 9, 2008 at 8:59 AM | Permalink

    32 (cba) very relevant. And we dont know enough about this.

  39. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 9, 2008 at 9:54 AM | Permalink

    36 (Ian)

    Western societies like ours have the standard of living, the longevity and the
    creativity we have because we have learned that conventional wisdom has no
    absolute status, and that progress often comes when it is successfully challenged.

    On this case, the strength of the relationship rather than our understanding as to the dynamics of causation suggests that we should dig deeper.

    Is the link between CO2 and warming as strong as the relationship between irradiance and temperature anomalies in the troposphere?

    Any specultion as to the driver of the solar cycle is fundamentally immaterial. It’s what is driving the observed temperature anomalies that is important. The timing of the anomalies has no relationship with CO2 content of the atmosphere.

    Let’s focus on the observed anomalies.

  40. Posted Apr 9, 2008 at 10:25 AM | Permalink

    37 (Erl):

    What are the oceans reacting to? What is the time scale? How is the heat gained?

    I would image the Sun shines on the oceans.

    The frequency of the occurence of these temperature anomalies at the same time of the year should ring a little bell. The intervals are far from random.

    There are seasons, and weather does change with some regularity, like it is colder winter and warmer in summer. These things are slightly different between hemispheres so a residual variation will remain.

    On this case, the strength of the relationship rather than our understanding as to the dynamics of causation suggests that we should dig deeper.

    That is true provided the relationship is strong. Now, there is a way of picking up signals that are regular. Computing the power spectrum will show how much ‘power’ there is at each frequency. This is particularly efficient for signals that are strictly periodic like the orbital revolution of the Earth and the planets. In my next post I’ll show a couple of power spectra, and then we can see.

    Is the link between CO2 and warming as strong as the relationship between irradiance and temperature anomalies in the troposphere?

    Any speculation as to the driver of the solar cycle is fundamentally immaterial. It’s what is driving the observed temperature anomalies that is important. The timing of the anomalies has no relationship with CO2 content of the atmosphere.

    I agree completely and so am at a loss why you bring it up [and I don't need further elaboration]. There are other people that will disagree with your last statement, but since it is irrelevant it doesn’t bother me.

  41. steven mosher
    Posted Apr 9, 2008 at 5:38 PM | Permalink

    DR. S.

    I spent some time searching in gavins code. Nothing seemed to address the issue you raised.
    But This is just my first read.

    Sometimes code looks like this:

    TSL=TSAVG(I,J)
    SNOWOI=SNOWI(I,J)
    SNOWLI=SNOWLI_COM(I,J)
    SNOWE=SNOWE_COM(I,J) ! snow depth (kg/m**2)
    snow_frac(:) = fr_snow_rad_ij(:,i,j) ! snow cover (1)
    AGESN(1)=SNOAGE(3,I,J) ! land ! ? why are these numbers
    AGESN(2)=SNOAGE(1,I,J) ! ocean ice so confusing ?
    AGESN(3)=SNOAGE(2,I,J) ! land ice
    c print*,”snowage”,i,j,SNOAGE(1,I,J)

    Check here, look at the routine Radia

  42. steven mosher
    Posted Apr 9, 2008 at 5:39 PM | Permalink

    check here

    http://www.giss.nasa.gov/tools/modelE/modelEsrc/

  43. steven mosher
    Posted Apr 9, 2008 at 5:45 PM | Permalink

    Here DR. S

    routine ORBPAR

    !@sum ORBPAR calculates the three orbital parameters as a function of
    !@+ YEAR. The source of these calculations is: Andre L. Berger,
    !@+ 1978, “Long-Term Variations of Daily Insolation and Quaternary
    !@+ Climatic Changes”, JAS, v.35, p.2362. Also useful is: Andre L.
    !@+ Berger, May 1978, “A Simple Algorithm to Compute Long Term
    !@+ Variations of Daily Insolation”, published by Institut
    !@+ D’Astronomie de Geophysique, Universite Catholique de Louvain,
    !@+ Louvain-la Neuve, No. 18.
    !@auth Gary Russell (with extra terms from D. Thresher)
    C****
    C**** Tables and equations refer to the first reference (JAS). The
    C**** corresponding table or equation in the second reference is
    C**** enclosed in parentheses.
    C****
    USE CONSTANT, only : twopi,PI180=>radian
    IMPLICIT NONE
    C**** Input:
    !@var YEAR = years C.E. are positive, B.C.E are -ve (i.e 4BCE = -3)
    REAL*8, INTENT(IN) :: YEAR
    C**** Output:
    !@var ECCEN = eccentricity of orbital ellipse
    !@var OBLIQ = latitude of Tropic of Cancer in degrees
    !@var OMEGVP = longitude of perihelion =
    !@+ = spatial angle from vernal equinox to perihelion
    !@+ in degrees with sun as angle vertex

  44. Posted Apr 9, 2008 at 7:04 PM | Permalink

    43 (stevenM): thanks, now the question is what does he actually do with that value.?

  45. Larry T
    Posted Apr 9, 2008 at 9:05 PM | Permalink

    Too bad Hansen doesn’t work for some one that has access to ephemeris data so that the calculations would be easier. Maybe someone like NASA.

  46. Posted Apr 9, 2008 at 9:07 PM | Permalink

    Below is a correlation map of solar flux and OLR (I think of OLR as cloudiness, more or less). The period is 1980-2006.
    .

    As I read it, when solar flux is high then there tends to be more cloudiness in several regions that I normally associated with the cooling-and-sinking regions of the Hadley-Walker circulation. I realize that any correlation is weak.

    What to make of this? Not much – too weak. But I’ll keep the correlator map-generator clicking in case something interesting pops up.

  47. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 9, 2008 at 9:43 PM | Permalink

    46 (David)
    Rather than their entire period 1978 2006 is it possible to select periods according to the following criteria:
    July (Aphelion, summer in NH, diminished irradiance)
    January (Perihelion, SH summer, period where positive tropospheric temperature anomalies tend to show up.)
    El Nino periods
    La Nina periods

    It might be instructive to see where the OLR anomalies are. Not sure what the correlation with solar flux tells us.

  48. David Smith
    Posted Apr 10, 2008 at 10:13 AM | Permalink

    Erl, I think so. The correlation map machine is found here . It’s a flexible program and make many maps. As always, of course, it’s good to read about the data source they use so that the data is truly what you read and interpret from the tag.

    Personally I remain agnostic on the issue of a significant solar/climate connection. In perusing the various correlation maps I see hints of relationships between the solar cycle and atmospheric parameters but they’re weak.

    I suspect that Sol’s fingerprints on the climate, if they exist. will be found in some seemingly obscure and underappreciated aspect of the atmosphere, probably in the upper levels and involving the tropics. That’s my conjecture.

  49. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 11, 2008 at 7:37 AM | Permalink

    48 (David) and 24 (Leif)

    re:

    The increase was 0.6 W/m2 out of 1367 W/m2, i.e. 0.00044 of the whole. That qualifies as a wiggle in my book.

    Leif, a wiggle it is, but the inherent heating power of that change in irradiance is immaterial.

    Since 1990 peak anomalies in temperature in the troposphere have occurred mainly in Southern Hemisphere summer when the average temperature of the Earth is coolest. This is associated with an increase in absorption of solar radiation by the tropical and southern oceans because the usual level of cloud is not there to reflect it. The Southern Hemisphere has a higher ratio of ocean to land surface than the Northern Hemisphere, and under normal circumstances has a greater portion of cloud free sky over the ocean. An El Nino event represents an increase in energy taken up by the oceans over and above that which is regularly absorbed in Southern Hemisphere summer. What happens to the southern hemisphere ocean is very important to the Earth’s heat budget.

    A peak in Northern Hemisphere temperature occurs in the June following El Nino warming in January. The Northern Hemisphere is where the Earth system most spectacularly exhibits its response to change in the heat budget. This is due first to the transfer of warmth by ocean currents and second to the seasonal heating of the atmosphere due to radiation by the substantial land masses of the Northern Hemisphere. Global temperature peaks in Northern Hemisphere summer. As cba has pointed out radiation exceeds energy intake at this time. The pot boils over.

    Warming events in the Southern Hemisphere are clearly associated with a reduction in outgoing long wave radiation. Paradoxically this occurs when the Earth is closest to the sun and solar radiation is 90 watts per square metre greater than when the Earth is furthest from the sun. The energy available for heating is at a seasonal peak. In January the Earth shows the absorbent part of its surface to the sun and the global temperature is coolest.

    The anomalous warming event is therefore associated with strong absorption of energy by the ocean in the tropics and the subtropical region of the southern hemisphere. The ocean keeps that energy and it does not give it off to the atmosphere. The anomalous warming of the atmosphere is due to direct heating of the atmosphere. It is that which evaporates the cloud cover.

    Recent surges in energy absorption have occurred in January because new sunspots seem to appear very regularly leading up to January. Though the level of irradiance increases only ever so slightly there is a marked increase in the activity of the solar wind. This wind carries a heavily polarised magnetic signature. Energetic short wave radiation increases by a factor much greater than the general level of irradiance.

    It has long been known that changes in geopotential height, wind and atmospheric temperature in the upper atmosphere are associated with solar and ENSO activity. The mechanism by which the upper atmosphere warms is unclear. However what is clear is that, as it warms it becomes less humid and supports less cloud. This mediates the reception of energy at the surface. The energy gain is determined by the increase in the transparency of the atmosphere to solar radiation, secondly the level of energy available at the time and third, the capacity to absorb that energy. A small increase in transparency is associated with substantial increase in the level of irradiance reaching the surface of the planet. Only about 50% of solar radiation is normally geo-effective in the sense that it actually warms the Earth. A change in the fraction is obviously influential. It is like the opening of an iris on a camera. The change is signalled by a fall in outgoing long wave radiation. Even so, the atmosphere warms. It obviously warms from above.

    Here are some consequences for solar/atmospheric science. It is apparent that the temperature of the planet depends upon the mediation of solar radiation by clouds. The association with the sun indicates that a new paradigm is required where atmospheric temperature is seen to be driven by factors in addition to surface temperature.

    El Nino warming events and La Nina cooling events represent change in the Earths heat budget.
    The dynamics causing an ENSO event manifest differently around the Earth according to the local change in cloud cover and the effect of ocean heat redistribution.

    Heating events are associated with the vigorous increase in solar activity in the early stages of the upswing of the solar cycle and periodic strong fluctuations in the decline phase rather than with the absolute peaks of sunspot activity. The magnitude of the ‘whole of cycle sunspot peak’ is irrelevant. The length of the sunspot cycle is irrelevant. It is the internal structure and the timing that matters. The heating effect of new sunspot activity depends upon whether the Earth is receptive to energy at the time, the effect being much greater in Southern Hemisphere summer. The absolute level of energy available from the sun is also greater at that time.

    Although heating events have been very common in Southern hemisphere summer in recent times this may not have been the case in the past. Orbital influences are vital in determining the impact of new sunspot activity. Perhaps this is the link with the PDO. Perhaps it is the explanation for the change in the aggregate of the SOI for the entire cycle from one cycle to another.

    I agree with David when he says:

    I suspect that Sol’s fingerprints on the climate, if they exist, will be found in some seemingly obscure and underappreciated aspect of the atmosphere, probably in the upper levels and involving the tropics.

    There is a smoking gun indicating the cause of climate change. It’s called El Nino.
    I do agree with you Leif, when you state that the wiggle has no heating power in itself. But the wiggle changes the cloud cover and depending upon when and where it occurs, there is a temperature response. As the ‘when’ and the ‘where’ change, the temperature response will vary. The relationship is complex and not subject to easy calculation based on proportional changes in irradiance.

    For minimal solar effect on climate we would look to a situation where spurts in irradiance occurred when the Earth was at the further point of its elliptical orbit. If the Earth presented its radiative northern hemisphere to the sun when irradiance increases the effect on an already relatively cloud free atmosphere would be minimal. Alternatively irradiance could vary very little at all (Maunder Minimum) and the result would be the same. This would be a recipe for marked cooling of the oceans. If, as a result the humidity of the air was to fall and the northern hemisphere was to become even more reflective due to snow cover, glaciers might form in many places where they have existed in the distant past. It seems that there is not much chance of that happening while the big fluctuations in sunspot activity happen in January.

    It will be interesting to see whether sunspot activity continues to peak in January. If January 2009 is going to be a peak the sun should have got a wriggle (or a wiggle) on before now. :-)

  50. stargazer
    Posted Apr 11, 2008 at 10:32 AM | Permalink

    This might be worth a look at

    http://www.sciencebits.com/SloanAndWolfendale

  51. Johan i Kanada
    Posted Apr 11, 2008 at 4:43 PM | Permalink

    Some interesting comments (and research links) from Lubos on the sun-climate issue:
    http://motls.blogspot.com/2008/04/sun-climate-link-reply-to-sloan-and.html

  52. Posted Apr 11, 2008 at 5:52 PM | Permalink

    As to the discussion on when cycle 24 will get on its way, there is a small, bright area at 10 o’clock that has the correct polarity to be SC24. This region might form a spot if it can suck up some more flux in the next day or two. Bears watching [the image below will change in approx. real time]:

    .

  53. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 12, 2008 at 1:58 AM | Permalink

    Observations suggest that our understanding of cloud formation processes and the way in which the sun interacts with aerosols and moisture, affecting the temperature of the mid troposphere, is deficient.

    http://www.terradaily.com/reports/Widespread_Twilight_Zone_Detected_Around_Clouds_999.html

  54. Posted Apr 12, 2008 at 8:17 AM | Permalink

    53 (Erl):

    our understanding of cloud formation processes and the way in which the sun interacts with aerosols and moisture, affecting the temperature of the mid troposphere, is deficient

    Erl, does that include your understanding of it?

  55. kim
    Posted Apr 12, 2008 at 8:22 AM | Permalink

    54 (Erl) Gratuitous. If he understood it sufficiently, why the agony?
    ===========================================

  56. Posted Apr 12, 2008 at 8:28 AM | Permalink

    55 (kim): whose agony? Erl’s? My question arises from Erl’s claim [as I read his posts] that he understands it.

  57. kim
    Posted Apr 12, 2008 at 8:32 AM | Permalink

    56 (Leif) Though I can’t speak for him, I’d guess Erl would be the last to claim his understanding is ‘sufficient’.
    ======================================================

  58. Posted Apr 12, 2008 at 8:45 AM | Permalink

    57 (kim): read Erl’s posts, or let’s see what he responds. Maybe a subtle difference between ‘sufficient’ and ‘not deficient’…

  59. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 12, 2008 at 8:54 AM | Permalink

    54 (Leif)

    The information was news to me. I thought others mighty have missed it too. Just another piece in the jigsaw.

    Let’s just play the ball and not the man shall we. I am not here to give you a hard time. I am trying to solve a problem that concerns me greatly. And, I don’t mind admitting that I am learning lots along the way.

  60. Posted Apr 12, 2008 at 9:15 AM | Permalink

    59 (Erl): You are right. I apologize for missing the ball for the man. The lesson we should all learn is to make slightly less ‘mister-know-it-all’ claims when we really are just groping for answers.

  61. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 12, 2008 at 9:38 AM | Permalink

    60 (Leif)

    Thanks Leif. Gracious of you.

    If I come across as a ‘mister know it all’it is because I want to put a stong case up in as coherent a way as I can. I apologise for the wordiness but I want to cover all the bases.

    When I wake up in the morning I am already thinking “Climate”. Here are my thoughts for today. If I have things the wrong way round please let me know. I find the positions taken below genuinely puzzling and am at a loss as to how to get my point of view across. Many of these things constitute the basics that have to be settled before a meaningful discussion can proceed.

    Climate studies seem to frequently involve a disconnection of observation and thought process. Here is what seems to me to be some rather obvious examples, in no particular order.

    Apparently strong temperature advances in the NH (while the SH exhibits relatively stable temperatures) are described as ‘GLOBAL WARMING’

    A sub-fractional increase in the proportion of a trace gas is seen as responsible for atmospheric temperature increase. However, the atmosphere has no capacity to store warmth. It returns to rest overnight. The Stratosphere is actually cooling.

    The changes in temperature that occur at the top of the troposphere and in the stratosphere seem to relate more to solar activity, particulate and ozone content than flux in outgoing long wave radiation. Hence the change in geopotential height with solar activity and ENSO

    Temperature fluctuations plainly occur on an annual or a bi-annual basis. However, diehard adherents to particular ideological positions persist in trying to link temperature change to processes that evolve over much longer time and relate poorly if at all to the temperature record.

    The oceans store warmth and transfer it from place to place. ENSO processes plainly involve major change in the amount of heat stored in the oceans. The oceans make up two thirds of the area of the globe and have mass thousands of times greater than the atmosphere. However, ENSO processes are dismissed as ‘internal oscillations of the climate system’. Some try to diagnose trends by statistical removal of the ENSO effectively (can this be done) removing the source of the variation. Looks like a bad case of a………. biting.

    Cosmic rays are invoked as modes of causation for temperature change via cloud cover when it is apparent that seasonal processes with much shorter time periods are the main driver of change in cloud cover and temperature fluctuation.

    Atmospheric heating depends upon energy gain from without (the sun) and within (conduction, convection radiation, release of latent heat of condensation). When it suits them people can ignore the former entirely.

    Cloud cover is dependent upon relative humidity that is in turn dependent upon atmospheric temperature. Yet, some people suggest that the major driver is the presence or absence of cloud condensation nuclei. On a daily basis we see that the presence or absence of fog, mist and cloud relates very simply to changes in relative humidity. Humidity is at a maximum overnight and a minimum in the mid afternoon. The sun drives the mists away while the temperature of the soil varies very little at all.

    In the case of the SH summer the disappearance of cloud that enables ocean heat gain is plainly associated with anomalous warmth in the troposphere. There is no anomalous increase in warmth at the surface to account for this. No lag or lead effect is possible. To produce anomalous warmth in the troposphere from surface warming the two must be co-incidental.

  62. Posted Apr 12, 2008 at 10:00 AM | Permalink

    61 (Erl): one of the problems you have [and trust me, I know the urge] is to try to do too much, as someone has remarked many posts ago. With complicated problems like this it is better to take much smaller steps. In the back of your mind, you may have a ‘big picture’, as we all must have [a paradigm or frame]. The big picture must always be subordinate to where the little steps lead. Different people may have different big pictures, but they can [or ought to] usually agree on each little step. If not, the step was too big :-) . It is usually not helpful to re-iterate [to others] one’s own big picture every day. A certain numbness sets in, and the tiny [hopefully there are some] changes from day to day brought about by the small steps will not be noticed, and the ‘big picture’ becomes a kind of background nuisance noise that is in the way of progress. There are computer programs [I have written some myself] that can compare two texts and tell what have changed [inserted, deleted, and the hard part: moved around]. Computers are not quite smart enough, yet, to do that with your posts :-) so I’ll have to ask you to supply the necessary culling. Maybe we can start with the two latest iterations. What is the difference between them?

  63. EW
    Posted Apr 12, 2008 at 10:16 AM | Permalink

    From the Lubos’ blog I went here and among the newer articles that cite the article I found this one that has a nice pic showing how ionizing particles penetrate through atmosphere and are filtered. The pic shows their intensity in various heights over the Earth surface through several solar cycles. the paper is behind the money wall, but I have it.

  64. EW
    Posted Apr 12, 2008 at 10:27 AM | Permalink

    From the Lubos’ blog I went here and among the newer articles that cite the article I found this one that has a nice pic showing how ionizing particles penetrate through atmosphere and are filtered. The pic shows their intensity in various heights over the Earth surface through several solar cycles. The paper is behind the money wall, but I have it. Please delete the previous version of this post.

  65. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 12, 2008 at 10:34 AM | Permalink

    63 Leif,
    I take it by ‘iterations’ you refer to posts 49 and 61. Oh Dear, choose whichever you wish. The crux of the issue is whether the sun actually warms the atmosphere directly, a point that you consistently deny, against the evidence, I suggest. Forgive me for supplying the evidence and painstakingly going over the logic.

  66. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 12, 2008 at 10:49 AM | Permalink

    62 (Leif)
    If you continue to hammer me on a minor aspect of the thesis and fail to address the thrust of the argument is it any wonder that I cover the ground again. I sketch the big picture on each occasion because you have not yet indicated that you actually see it as a possible alternative. Can I conclude that this is a picture that you will not countenance? Are we stuck with the notion that ENSO is an internal oscillation of the climate system?

  67. Posted Apr 12, 2008 at 11:14 AM | Permalink

    66 (Erl): Just repeating the argument again and again is not having any effect. I have not indicated that I see it as a possible alternative, because I do not. It is hard to see what the main thrust is because [as I said] it drowns in the details. But I think it is that enough UV reaches all the way down into the troposphere to provide the heating needed to drive el Nino [and other things?], and the cooling [?] to drive la Nina. I do not think the energy is there to do it, as not enough UV makes it that far down. All the other things [solar wind opens a window, the sun pulling the Earth back in causing tidal waves in the sun, the tiny wiggles being amplified and the great annual swings not, etc] simply do not make sense and do not happen. We are not stuck with ENSO being an internal oscillation, it is just that the particular mechanism you propose is not doing it, because the energy and the physics are not there. Just because I cannot supply an alternative mechanism does not automatically imply that yours is good. Call this a blow of the ‘velvet hammer’.

  68. Posted Apr 12, 2008 at 11:22 AM | Permalink

    64 (EW): you are showing the cosmic ray flux and how the variation rapidly disappears as we get closer to the ground and into the troposphere. But what is your point? That these help form the low clouds [forming below the bottom of your graph] that Svensmark and Co like?

  69. Posted Apr 12, 2008 at 11:33 AM | Permalink

    66 (Erl): Here is a suggestion: Assume that there are 50 steps or points you want to make in the logical chain, each backed up by evidence. Then let us start with the first one and then work through that one, let’s say with twenty or so posts, until it is clear what its fate is going to be. If the step doesn’t pan out, we can chop off all the rest of the decision tree that depends crucially on this point. If none do that from the beginning, we can omit that first point right away. Then we go on to the next step, etc. Each step should be able to be described in one [short] paragraph, otherwise we have not accomplished anything. I have participated in such a process many, many times [part of my daily work as a practicing scientist] so I know that the process works [there is a reason that editors of scientific journals don't like long articles]. How about it?

  70. EW
    Posted Apr 12, 2008 at 12:03 PM | Permalink

    68 (Leif) The paper deals with modeling (ugh, I know, that’s almost an indecent word) and testing of the model for cosmic ray induced ionization (CRII) (cascade) in the atmosphere. The Fig. 6 indeed shows that the cosmic rays can’t interfere with the low clouds personally, so to say ;-)

    The authors also note the rather turbulent part of the curves since cca 2000 but apparently don’t have an explanation.
    They did also a reconstruction of CRII. Seems the hotter the temp was or is, the lower CRII.

  71. Posted Apr 12, 2008 at 12:13 PM | Permalink

    70 (Erl): if you turn the graph upside down it just shows the solar cycle on top a some some trends [e.g. the grey line] for which there is no good evidence. [see about 250 previous posts on this starting with Svalgaard#1].

  72. EW
    Posted Apr 12, 2008 at 12:44 PM | Permalink

    71 (Leif) Well, what else it should do? If the solar activity shoos the GCR away, then there’s no ionization…

  73. Posted Apr 12, 2008 at 12:51 PM | Permalink

    72 (EW): solar activity doesn’t shoo the GCRs away, only reduces them by a few per cent…

  74. EW
    Posted Apr 12, 2008 at 1:49 PM | Permalink

    73 (Leif) Don’t take me so literally – OK, shoos few percent of them away.

    Anyway, isn’t few percent an amazing number, compared with all that havoc, that mere ppms of CO2 are to wreak? ;-)

  75. Gerry
    Posted Apr 12, 2008 at 1:59 PM | Permalink

    THE CENTRAL SUBJECT OF CLIMATOLOGY

    In my opinion the researchers in climatology should put aside their work for a moment and focus their attention on the central and decisive subject of climatology. This is the extremely close correlation between the changes in the mean surface temperature and the small changes in the rotational velocity of the Earth in the past 150 years (see Fig. 2.2 of http://www.fao.org/DOCREP/005/Y2787E/y2787e03.htm), which has been ignored by the mainstream climatologists.

    Since temperature cannot influence rotation to the observed degree and vice verca, a third agent must be driving the two. The solution is given in http://www.icecap.us/images/uploads/Lobert_on_CO2.pdf .

  76. Pat Keating
    Posted Apr 12, 2008 at 3:44 PM | Permalink

    775 Gerry
    Interesting first citation, but the second one is rather off the wall.

  77. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 12, 2008 at 4:38 PM | Permalink

    89 (Leif)
    Good, I am a patient and determined person. Where to begin?

    Suggestion: Ocean heat uptake in SH summer is related to reduced outgoing long wave radiation (generally interpreted to be related to reduction of cloud cover in the affected area).

    Or should we begin at the very beginning? ENSO heating events relate to a generalised warming across the tropics and feed into global temperatures?

    Perhaps you should lead? What chain of reasoning would you find convincing? Chart me a course.

  78. Posted Apr 12, 2008 at 9:41 PM | Permalink

    77: It seems to me that a central tenet of yours is this one:
    “ENSO processes plainly involve major change in the amount of heat stored in the oceans. The oceans make up two thirds of the area of the globe and have mass thousands of times greater than the atmosphere. However, ENSO processes are dismissed as ‘internal oscillations of the climate system'” You, as far as I can gauge do not think so, but rather that ENSO is externally imposed. So my first question is: if ENSO is internal, how much of the rest of your position is altered? Or can you live with ENSO just being internal and all [or most of the rest] would still stand?

    Actually, if I read your statement again, I can divide it into two parts:
    1: “ENSO processes plainly involve major change in the amount of heat stored in the oceans. The oceans make up two thirds of the area of the globe and have mass thousands of times greater than the atmosphere.”

    2: “ENSO processes are dismissed as ‘internal oscillations of the climate system'”

    These two clauses are connected by a ‘However”, which indicates that you consider them somehow contradictory. Or, at least, because of the first, you don’t think that the dismissal in the second is correct. This is my interpretation.
    Now, I don’t think we can find anybody that will disagree with the first statement. We can therefore cross that out and never have to refer to it or to mention it again.

    That leaves us with the second statement as the first topic of discussion.
    “Is ENSO internal or external, or, perhaps a bit of both”.

    Before we go on, I’ll first return to the question: “if ENSO is internal, how much of the rest of your position is altered? Or can you live with ENSO just being internal and all [or most of the rest] would still stand?”

    If you can live with an internal ENSO, we need, of course, not discuss ENSO any further. So that is really the first question; the first major branching of the decision tree. Over to you.

  79. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 12, 2008 at 11:54 PM | Permalink

    78 (Leif)

    ENSO is externally imposed. If ENSO is not externally imposed I have nothing to offer in explanation of a Sun/Climate connection. However, there exists an element of internal oscillation in that a heated ocean will humidify the atmosphere, generate cloud and cut off solar radiation. The oceans can not warm again until the atmosphere is de-humidified. The process of cloud dissipation depends upon convection, thunderstorm activity, cyclones, orographic uplift and frontal processes that occur in localised areas. Most rainfall occurs over the land which comprises a small part of the Earths surface. Hence, de-humidifying the atmosphere takes time.

    Strong increases in irradiance in the upswing of the solar cycle therefore tend to be limited in their heating effect by the development of cloud cover. Further increases in irradiance provoke no further heating once a point is reached where cloud cover cuts off the process whereby the iris opens to admit more sunlight.

    The law of diminishing returns therefore affects the degree of heating that can occur.

    Despite this, the weight of evidence (that I see) is that increases in irradiance cause the SOI index to fall (ENSO multivariate Index rises) as the oceans warm.

    The degree of warmth that can be injected into the oceans depends upon which hemisphere faces the sun when the increase in irradiance occurs. One hemisphere has much more ocean.

    There is no need at this stage to go into how an increase in irradiance causes clouds to disappear. You can read ‘sunspot activity’ or ‘UV radiation’ for ‘Irradiance’.

    You asked about whether I thought the heat gain was externally imposed or internal to the Earth system. I hope that I make myself clear. I say that the ocean heating events known as EL Nino are initiated by the reaction of the Earth system to changes in the sun.

  80. Posted Apr 13, 2008 at 6:17 AM | Permalink

    79 (Erl):

    ENSO is externally imposed. If ENSO is not externally imposed I have nothing to offer in explanation of a Sun/Climate connection.

    This is a clear statement. The rest of your post goes beyond this and at this point is not yet of interest, with one possible exception:

    I say that the ocean heating events known as EL Nino are initiated by the reaction of the Earth system to changes in the sun

    You left out la Nina. Is this internal or external? I seem to remember something about geomagnetic activity an la Nina. So, to clarify: la Nina also external? So both heating and cooling ENSOs are external?

  81. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 13, 2008 at 7:29 AM | Permalink

    80 (Leif) La Nina occurs when atmospheric humidity is high and the upper troposphere remains cool so conserving cloud. La Nina is frequently seen after a strong El Nino (that puts the water vapour into the atmosphere) and therefore can (paradoxically) occur in a regime of increasing irradiance in the upswing of the solar cycle. Otherwise it occurs in conjunction with atmospheric cooling associated with diminishing sunspot activity in the decline phase of the sunspot cycle. UV irradiance and geomagnetic indices seem to relate to sunspot activity but in my book the chief agent of atmospheric heating in the advance and decline of the sunspot cycle is UV. Irradiance happens to vary fairly closely with UV and these two seem to offer the best co-incidences with positive temperature anomalies in the troposphere.

    The depth and length of La Nina relates to the intensity of the previous El Nino and the freedom from any stimulus that will warm the upper atmosphere and reduce cloud cover (mainly UV).

    La Nina represents the absence of a stimulus that will produce El Nino conditions. Its endurance depends upon the continuation of conditions that will conserve a saturated atmosphere.

    The strength of El Nino relates to the hemisphere that faces the sun at the time of the irradiance increase and the position of the Earth in its orbit at the time of the irradiance increase. (determines strength of irradiance).

    These names (El Nina, La Nina) are associated with a strong manifestation of a global event that happens to manifest in the Pacific Ocean. The extreme manifestation is due to the fact that the tip of South America lies close to the Antarctic Peninsula offering a restriction to the flow of very cold waters driven by the West Wind Drift located just to the north of Antarctica. The lesser manifestations in the Indian Ocean and the Atlantic are conditioned by the shape and location of the continental land masses. In the North Pacific the cold waters from Alaska have no alternative but to return to the tropics. In the Atlantic the position is different in part because of the shape of South America (driving tropical waters northward) and the outflow of warm but dense salty waters from the Mediterranean. So, the waters returning to the tropics are warmer there. In the Indian Ocean a warm pool forms with little interaction with the cold waters of high latitudes. However, the ENSO phenomenon has its counterpart here too with a dramatic fall in water temperatures during La Nina conditions.

    So, I am talking about a phenomenon that affects all tropical latitudes, not just the Pacific Ocean.

  82. Posted Apr 13, 2008 at 8:12 AM | Permalink

    81 (Erl): Again, you go way beyond the simple question and the details drown out the essentials. Once more: is la Nina, external or internal? We [and all Peruvian fishermen] all know what la Nina and el Nino are from an observational standpoint. If the sun was absolutely constant, no sunspots, no varying UV, etc, would there be la Ninas [and/or el Ninos]?

    If the answer is “no”, may one then conclude that there were no ENSOs during the Maunder minimum when the sun didn’t vary for 70 years? That would be a crucial prediction and test. Right?

  83. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 13, 2008 at 8:37 AM | Permalink

    82 (Leif)
    One represents the presence of the stimulus and the other its absence. But also the strength of the La Nina depends upon the work done by the preceding El Nino.

    Now, as to the Maunder minimum test, I suspect that heating events depend upon other factors than irradiance because they can also occur at solar minimum. Their strength also depends upon which hemisphere is facing the sun at the time and orbital factors determining the strength of irradiance.

    Some weak solar cycles show extreme swings in the SOI.

    No good seeking simple solutions or simple tests to validate an idea when the causation and manifestation is complex. Patience please.

  84. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 13, 2008 at 8:42 AM | Permalink

    Leif
    In solar cycles 18-20 most heating events happened in NH summer. In solar cycles 20-23 most heating events happened in SH summer. The results, as we know were cooling from 1945 to 1976 and warming thereafter. The PDO also shows this shift. I hesitate to explain further in case I exceed the word allowance.

  85. Posted Apr 13, 2008 at 8:58 AM | Permalink

    83,84 (Erl): steps are too big. a simple yes/no would suffice. So all of ENSO is external? Again this has a yes/no answer?

    The tilt of the axis and the orbit has not changed appreciably since the Maunder minimum, so you can’t go that route. What other solar factors were changing during the Maunder minimum? [I know some, but that is for later]. The one [direct heating by UV] that you advocate did certainly not change.
    The disappearance of ENSO during the Maunder minimum seems to be a firm prediction of your theory. Again yes/no?

    I see four possible responses to these two questions:
    1: Y Y
    2: Y N
    3: N Y
    4: N N

    which one? 1 or 2 or 3 or 4. We are down to a single digit now. Which one?
    If we allow a ‘dunno’, we have a wider choice:
    1: Y Y
    2: Y N
    3: Y D
    4: N Y
    5: N N
    6: N D
    7: D Y
    8: D N
    9: D D

  86. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 13, 2008 at 9:44 AM | Permalink

    85 (Leif)

    The disappearance of ENSO during the Maunder minimum seems to be a firm prediction of your theory. Again yes/no?

    No. Strong temperature fluctuations occurred during the Maunder Minimum as they do at solar minimum. Can you suggest why?

    The green arrows represent periods where the SOI aggregate over a solar cycle indicated cooling and the brown warming. Unfortunately the SOI index does not go back to the Maunder Minimum. Nor does the temperature record.

    The fluctuations in temperature (and the SOI) at solar minimum will be controversial. I suspect that they are solar wind influenced but have no proof or observational evidence to back this up. Can we concentrate on the periods where irradiance does vary? That is where the biggest swings in temperature usually occur.

    We can go into the reasons why cooling occurs within some solar cycles where sunspots reach a high aggregate if you permit. That is the converse of the case of the MM. I do have a pretty plausible explanation for that. Do you?

  87. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 13, 2008 at 10:13 AM | Permalink

    Leif,
    When the ocean cools during a MM type event the moisture content of the atmosphere will also fall. Much smaller changes in irradiance (Direct heating by UV) can knock the wispy clouds out of an atmosphere with very little moisture in it. I guess this is one of the thermostatic mechanisms that the Earth possesses to ensure that it does not cool down too much.

    Be back tomorrow. It’s 12.30 AM here.

  88. Posted Apr 13, 2008 at 11:22 AM | Permalink

    85,86 (Erl): We are not making any progress.

    me: The disappearance of ENSO during the Maunder minimum seems to be a firm prediction of your theory. Again yes/no?

    you: No. Strong temperature fluctuations occurred during the Maunder Minimum as they do at solar minimum.

    So your answer was ‘Y N’. Why did you not say so?
    I think you conflate prediction and observation by saying ‘occurred’. As there were no fluctuations in UV or TSI during the Maunder minimum [as far as we know] we would not have had those external drivers. Since strong fluctuations did occur as they do now, we now have to investigate why UV and TSI drive ENSO now, but not back then? You ask for my suggestion? Perhaps because ENSO is internal and therefore does not care about Maunder minima. But, it is too early for that.

    So, if we assume that at solar minima [and we must now define what minima are - one year at the lowest sunspot number? 2 years? 3 years? 4 years? ...?], UV and TSI do not drive ENSO, because during the MM there were no such solar variations but there were strong ENSO, then we must have:
    A: at solar minima, some other solar quality must drive ENSO.
    B: this should be true both then as now.
    Here again we can answer Y/N to each point and get the same table
    1: Y Y
    2: Y N
    3: N Y
    4: N N
    And as before there is the ‘dunno’ answer. But if we end up with too many dunnos, we are making any progress either. So, what shall it be? Over to you.

  89. zeb
    Posted Apr 13, 2008 at 1:34 PM | Permalink

    Erl, Leif has a very valid comments for you. It is very, very hard to follow your elaborations for outsiders. Please take this in the best meaning. I think you need to structure your presentations and not get to detailed in every sentence (KISS – Keep It Simple Stupid). Start with the overall essential picture and get into the details more separately. Sort of the same concepts as keeping details in an Appendix.

    i) Put the various items of your comprehensive and complex into some categories – the concept of divide and conquer (a) ENSO, b) La Nina, c) cloud formation, etc.).
    ii) A headline in front the paragraph should bring the reader right into what you have in mind.

    ENSO – triggered by sun activity
    Assumptions/Preconditions: bla-bla-bla

    Cloud formation – SH troposhere influenced by ENSO [pure guess example from me]
    bla-bla-bla

    iii) Avoid long sentences with many assumptions mentioned (even if they are perfectly precise).

    I sitting doing the same thing right now – communication with an audience. On a completely different subject though, but still scientific. It can be hard work getting it right. The estimate for my current task is 8 days this time for the upcoming 25 minute presentation. A lot of iteration and consideration goes into this communication preparation, but sometimes it is very necessary for complex issues.

  90. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 13, 2008 at 4:21 PM | Permalink

    Leif,
    We would agree that day is externally imposed. Is night also externally imposed or does it simply reflect the abscence of sunlight? Is not the presence of reflection by the moon a help when you want to get around at night?

    A: at solar minima, some other solar quality must drive ENSO.

    If two (or more)factors influence ENSO it must be concievable that they are not equally influential at all times. Your straightjacket is inappropriate.

    I think I have given part of the answer to the question as to why heating and cooling continues in weak solar cycles already in #87

    Instead of trying to knock me over the fence with a king hit why don’t you ask me for the evidence that I see for a solar driver for heating events.

    Your approach is unproductive. I could describe it in other terms but I will refrain.

  91. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 13, 2008 at 4:38 PM | Permalink

    89 (Zeb) Thanks, I will try harder. You are right, its difficult to convey ideas about complex phenomena. And this particular forum can be episodic, crowded and distracting. Might I suggest you go to my website at www:happs.com.au and look for the small section at the bottom of the site plan called ‘Research and Development’ where you will find ‘El Nino and the Sun’ parts 1 and 2 and ‘Cloud and temperature in the troposphere’. Thanks to Leif and this forum I have further insights not yet in PDF form that I will formalise soon. Meanwhile, what you see here is the best I can currently offer.

  92. Posted Apr 13, 2008 at 5:17 PM | Permalink

    90 (Erl): Back in 77 you asked me to lead ["chart me a course"]. This is what I have been doing. Maybe you are less patient than you thought. What I [having to drag it out of you] think we have established so far as being your theory is
    F1: ENSO (el Nino & la nina) is externally imposed, due solely to solar variability.
    F2: ENSO was vigorous during the Maunder Minimum, when there was no solar variability.

    From previous posts I remember that direct heating of the troposphere from UV and TSI wiggles was the cause of corresponding global temperature variations. To get our definitions straight, the next question is:
    Is ENSO a global phenomenon? Are el Nino/la Nina reflected in global temperatures? again, the usual set of answers are appropriate : Y Y, Y N, N Y, N N [or with the Dunnos].

  93. Posted Apr 13, 2008 at 5:27 PM | Permalink

    90 (Erl):

    Your straightjacket is inappropriate.

    I legal trials [in the US] there is a very efficient {and admittedly, feared} procedure called “Request For Admission”, defined as A discovery procedure, authorized by the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure and the court rules of many states, in which one party asks an opposing party to admit that certain facts are true. If the opponent admits the facts or fails to respond in a timely manner, the facts will be deemed true for purposes of trial.

    This procedure is very effective and actually saves a lot of time at trial. I have adopted this very appropriate procedure here as the most efficient way to make headway. It works!

  94. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 13, 2008 at 5:31 PM | Permalink

    92 (Leif)
    Yes, heating episodes in the tropics feeds into global temperatures. The tropics has a heat surplus that gets distributed. Air temperature there varies little. Water temperature also varies little but the mass of material that is warmed is immense.

    I have no data on the behaviour of ENSO during the Maunder Minimum but the ENSO signature is reported in data that goes back a very long time, long before the modern temperature record. Because rainfall in South America is affected, the signature is present in the sedimentary deposits close by.

  95. Posted Apr 13, 2008 at 6:22 PM | Permalink

    92 (Erl):

    I have no data on the behaviour of ENSO during the Maunder Minimum

    Yet back in #86 we had this exchange:

    Me: The disappearance of ENSO during the Maunder minimum seems to be a firm prediction of your theory. Again yes/no?

    You: No. Strong temperature fluctuations occurred during the Maunder Minimum as they do at solar minimum.

    So strong fluctuations in M.M. ENSO being global in scope. If there were strong fluctuations [assuming you have evidence for that] but you have no data on ENSO during M.M., then maybe those fluctuations were not ENSO. This confusion could be mine. Maybe we should drop ENSO altogether and just call it global temperature? The problem I have with that is that whenever there are big spikes in GT, people say ‘el Nino!’ and when there is cooling [like now] they yell ‘la Nina!’. What do you prefer? Shall we let ENSO lie and call it GT? Y N?

  96. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 13, 2008 at 6:24 PM | Permalink

    Leif,
    Next time you want to say it is an ‘inernal oscillation’ consider this statement: “the mass of material that is warmed is immense.”

    That statement can now be validated from the data gathered by the Argo Buoys.

    Have a look at current sea surface temperatures around the globe. Compare with the situation a year ago.

    The ‘internal oscillation’ statement is also contradicted by the temperature data. Tropical temperatures vary more than global temperatures and tropical temperature lead global.

  97. Posted Apr 13, 2008 at 6:38 PM | Permalink

    96 (Erl): We are not investigating what I call it [because I have no idea]. We are trying to establish what you consider facts. Let’s not deviate from the focused approach. So, when we compare wiggles in TSI with temperaqture, should we use ENSO or GT? is this ENSO just not the best to use and should we concentrate on GT? Y N?

  98. Posted Apr 13, 2008 at 7:01 PM | Permalink

    Erl, you may interested in what ENSO looked like 3 million years ago:

    http://www.colrado.edu/GeolSci/faculty/molnarpdf/2002Paleoc.Molnar-Cane.pdf

  99. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 13, 2008 at 8:29 PM | Permalink

    97 (Leif)

    So, when we compare wiggles in TSI with temperaqture, should we use ENSO or GT? is this ENSO just not the best to use and should we concentrate on GT? Y N?

    Y N? is lost on me.Presume GT is global temperature.

    When one compares a data series of solar origin with terrestrial temperature I suggest that we need to capture the seasonal variations because degree of absorbtion into the oceans from the heating event very much depends upon whether it occurs in the NH summer (less ocean)or the SH summer. The effect is focussed in the tropics so the data to use is tropical temperature at the surface and various levels of the atmosphere. I suggest 30°N to 30°S but it is also instructive to look at narrower and wider latitude bands to capture the extent of the variation due to latitude. The cloud reduction in NH summer widens the bands of latitude that respond there. Obviously we should be looking at data for the oceans rather than the land masses. Land masses do not store heat well.

    Global temperatures will dampen the response. The SOI index goes back to the 1880s and is the index of choice even though it is based on air pressure. It leads temperature. The ENSO index is multivariate and some of those variables are irrelevant.

    Irradiance FUV and UV provides much better correlation than sunspot activity.

  100. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 13, 2008 at 8:54 PM | Permalink

    Leif, found http://www.colorado.edu/GeolSci/faculty/molnarpdf/2007Geosphere.MolnarCane.WhichElNino.pdf

  101. Posted Apr 13, 2008 at 9:00 PM | Permalink

    99 (Erl): Y N? meant: “(Y)es or (N)o?” GT is Global Temperature. From your response I cannot tell if we should use ENSO or GT or SOI. I do not know what you mean by ‘capture the seasonal variations’. Treat NH and SH separately? And then SST only. Too many choices. We did not finish #92.

  102. Posted Apr 13, 2008 at 9:19 PM | Permalink

    99 (Erl): I get it [I think]. By seasonal variations you mean the 90 W/m2 TSI variations [or corresponding variations is other solar indices]. that is a very good idea. And now back to #92. You suggest to use tropical temperatures. These have no seasonal variation and I find it difficult to get my head around difference between NH and SH for narrow latitude belt tropical data. So we are not closer.

  103. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 13, 2008 at 9:57 PM | Permalink

    102 (Leif)
    All I am saying is that we should use a 3 month average of monthly data so as to capture seasonal variations. Yes, the level of irradiance varies over the year due to orbital considerations as does the potential absorption of radiation by the oceans according to the amount of ocean that is most directly illuminated. There is much more ocean in the SH to be illuminated in January than there is in the NH in July. Complicating the issue is a big reduction in cloud cover in NH summer due to return of radiation by heating landmasses. This extends the relatively cloud free zone normally apparent at low latitudes to higher latitudes in the NH. So, there is a compensation effect for the lack of ocean area in the NH but even so the SH ocean heat gain dwarfs that in the NH every year.

    These are vital aspects conditioning the potential heat gain in the oceans when the atmospheric window opens due to UV heating. That window can open at any time of the year. Although in recent years it has opened widest and most frequently in January it has opened in other months in the past. The opening of the window is independent of orbital considerations. It is driven by sunspot activity/irradiance/FUV/UV and variations in these show strong annual components that shift in time.

    I know this because temperature anomalies in the mid troposphere are strongly associated with very tiny changes in irradiance. Irradiance correlates with sunspot activity. In solar cycles 18-20 increases in sunspot activity (and El Nino) mostly occurred in NH summer. Consequently, ocean heat gain was much less at that time than if the events had occurred in January. So the Earth cooled between 1945 and 1976.

  104. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 13, 2008 at 10:07 PM | Permalink

    102 (Leif)

    You suggest to use tropical temperatures. These have no seasonal variation and I find it difficult to get my head around difference between NH and SH for narrow latitude belt tropical data. So we are not closer.

    Anomalies in tropical mid troposphere temperatures appear in B of #20 This is UAH data for the tropical mid troposphere over the oceans between 30°N and 30°S. This is compared with surface data for the same bands of latitude also on B.

  105. Posted Apr 14, 2008 at 5:51 AM | Permalink

    104 (Erl): So to make progress, do we agree that the thing to do is to use actual radiation received from the Sun and compare with actual tropical temperature both averaged over 1 month? The 3 months averaging seems too arbitrary unless you have a physical reason why 3 months is good,

  106. Posted Apr 14, 2008 at 8:34 AM | Permalink

    At the upcoming AGU-meeting in May, these two talks are back to back:

    AN: SP23A-06
    TI: Does sunspot number calibration by the “magnetic needle” make sense?
    AU: * Mursula, K
    AU: Usoskin, I
    AU: Yakovchouk, O
    AB: It has been suggested recently that early sunspot numbers should be re-calibrated and significantly corrected using the observed daily range of the geomagnetic inclination (so called rY values). The suggested “correction” method makes an a priori detrending of the rY series and then extends the linear regression between rY and sunspot numbers established for the last 25 years to earlier times. The suggested “correction” of sunspot numbers by roughly 30% goes far beyond the traditional estimates of observational uncertainties of sunspots. Concentrating here on international sunspot numbers (Rz), we demonstrate that the rY values do not actually imply that the observed Rz values in the 19th century are systematically underestimated. Rather, we find that the Rz numbers are fairly uniform after mid-19th century. The suggested “correction” is largely induced by the detrending of the rY series, which enhances the rY-based sunspot activity in the 19th century relative to later times. We also show that while the annually averaged declinations have a rough relation between sunspots and other related solar parameters, this relation is strongly seasonally dependent and nonlinear and, therefore, not sufficiently accurate or uniform for rY to be used as a very reliable proxy of solar activity in early times.

    —–

    AN: SP23A-07
    TI: Sunspot Number Calibration by the “Magnetic Needle” Makes Sense
    AU: * Svalgaard, L
    AB: We show that the amplitude (dD) of the diurnal variation of the magnetic Declination is a reliable indicator of solar far ultraviolet radiation (FUV) and its proxy, the sunspot number, R [as was known already to Rudolf Wolf ~160 years ago]. FUV creates and maintains the E-layer of the ionosphere, determining the strength of the diurnal variation of the Declination. We show how the changes of sunspot number observers are faithfully reflected in discontinuities in the relationship between dD and R. Comparisons with other sunspot indices bear this out in a clear manner. On the whole, sunspot numbers before 1947 should be adjusted upwards by 20%, and before Wolf’s death by another 30%, with the net result that 20th century solar activity does not seem significantly larger than that of the 19th.

    —-

    This should make for an interesting exchange. BTW, the difference between dY and dD is through Y = H sin D, where H is the horizontal component of the geomagnetic field [which varies from place to place - but which is known]. So one can be calculated from the other, making them equivalent for the purpose of those two analyses.

  107. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 14, 2008 at 9:19 AM | Permalink

    Leif,
    I have no objection to daily data if this is what you are proposing but it is for sure that the atmosphere manages to dampen responses to daily fluctuation. I have plotted the moving average of monthly data so as to smooth slightly…. but not so much as to conceal the seasonal variation. Can not really see any benefit in adopting a finer resolution but you may of course do as you wish and see what the outcome is.

    A warning though, correlation is an invalid technique for evaluation of the strength of the relationship in this case. There are more than two variables involved.

  108. Posted Apr 14, 2008 at 9:28 AM | Permalink

    107 (Erl): I said “both averaged over 1 month”. Where do you get “daily” from.

  109. Posted Apr 14, 2008 at 9:32 AM | Permalink

    105 (me): Erl, there was a very important word in #105: “actual”. This means what the TOA actually gets, not what we get on Mars, on the Moon, or at 1 AU.

  110. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 14, 2008 at 9:37 AM | Permalink

    108 (Leif)
    Are you compensating for orbital variations? If not, what other factor?

  111. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 14, 2008 at 9:41 AM | Permalink

    Leif,
    What series are you proposing to use and over what period? I am somewhat in the dark here.

  112. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 14, 2008 at 9:44 AM | Permalink

    109 (Leif)
    Have you any particular criticisms of the data series that I chose to use in #20?

  113. Posted Apr 14, 2008 at 10:10 AM | Permalink

    110,111,112 (Erl):

    Have you any particular criticisms of the data series that I chose to use in #20?

    Yes, and I’ll repeat them here:
    1) the averaging is not consistent. The TSI is a 4-month ‘running’ average of daily values [which means there is a value every day, but that is the average of four months centered on that day], the temperature seems to be a 3-month running average of monthly values [which means that there is a data point every ~30 days centered on the middle of that month]. Since we can get 1-month averages of T and we can compute 1-month averages of TSI, we can obtain a consistent data set.
    2) The TSI [or whatever solar index we use] must be what the atmosphere actually sees. Not referred to some fictitious point in outer space.
    3) The temperature must be what is actually measured as response to the TSI actually observed, not some anomaly computed from some reference period under the dubious assumption that the seasonal variation is the same from year to year.

    Point 3 may be difficult to get, because the series are pieced together from a varying number of stations each with their own local variation. So we may have to ‘cheat’ and add in the average variation. Ijn that way we at least remove the dependence on the reference period.

  114. Posted Apr 14, 2008 at 3:13 PM | Permalink

    I got an email from Adolfo Giurfa from Lima, Peru. He writes:
    I am attaching a graph of Lima city temperatures from 1754 to 1856..you can relate these with ENSO.

    By the way, Lima city characteristic is its almost all the year round cloud covered sky, but now, in times of low SSN, we are having clear skies, just the opposite of Svenmarks´theory

  115. zeb
    Posted Apr 14, 2008 at 3:19 PM | Permalink

    91 (Erl) Thanks. I’ll download your thoughts and bring them with me on travel next. Sorry – my spare time right now is to limited to really engage in these interactive & interesting blogs.

  116. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 14, 2008 at 5:24 PM | Permalink

    114 (Leif)

    I got an email from Adolfo Giurfa from Lima, Peru. He writes:
    I am attaching a graph of Lima city temperatures from 1754 to 1856..you can relate these with ENSO.

    Yes, I think we can. I wonder if the clear skies in Lima during this La Nina are associated with a shift towards a dominant easterly origin to the wind and more than the usual quantity of rainfall on the other side of the Andes (Argentina). The East coast of Africa and the East coast of Australia experience more cloud and rainfall in La Nina emphasising the global nature of this phenomenon. All oceans are affected.

    So, the daily range of temperature in Lima will depend upon cloud cover and cloud cover there depends upon whether the oceans across the tropics are warming or cooling. By contrast, in Eastern Australia, where the cloud has been almost constant over the summer and the rain has bucketed down, the daily range of temperature has contracted.

    My interpretation is this: When the upper atmosphere is not being warmed by UV radiation, cloud cover increases across the tropics. The oceans then cool, the natural circulation of very cool water from Antarctica begins to replace the warm waters in the tropics and the diminishing pool of warm water is gradually pushed westwards. It is there that the greatest convection and thunderstorm activity occurs.

    This is a very simple, natural, solar driven fluctuation in the weather that will feed into very cold conditions in the Northern Hemisphere next NH winter. In the absence of significant sunspot activity the oceans will continue to cool. However, the amount of water vapour that the atmosphere can contain depends upon its temperature. The rain means that the atmosphere gets drier. It then becomes very susceptible to the next increase in irradiance and direct heating by UV radiation. A cooling ocean also makes for less evaporation.

    El Nino is waiting for the sunspot cycle 24 to make his appearance and he will come on to the stage with a flourish banishing the cloud and mist as he does so. Warming of the Eastern Pacific will re-establish the cloud that is customarily present in Lima. Meanwhile, Adolfo should enjoy the sunshine.

  117. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 14, 2008 at 5:34 PM | Permalink

    113 (Leif)

    3) The temperature must be what is actually measured as response to the TSI actually observed, not some anomaly computed from some reference period under the dubious assumption that the seasonal variation is the same from year to year.

    I have an email from Allan Macrae in Canada reporting that:

    Hi Erl,

    Have to run so can only answer your question.

    Monthly anomalies are calculated as the difference of the actual reading for that month, less the average of many years readings for the same month. UAH use as a base [begin 1979 to end 1998].

    Below is a note from John Christy as to why this is done, as opposed to reporting the actual temperatures.

    Allan:
    The basic idea of global warming via enhanced greenhouse gases is that the radiative action of the atmosphere will be altered so that more joules of energy are retained within the climate system. The bulk atmospheric temperature (rather than the surface temperature) is a clearer proxy for total energy content in the atmosphere – so anomalies and long term changes essentially document the (amm add: CHANGE IN THE) number of joules in the atmospheric system.

    John C.

    Regards, Allan

  118. Jim Arndt
    Posted Apr 14, 2008 at 6:28 PM | Permalink

    Leif what do yo make of the new spot 990. I see that STEREO seems to be showing a much larger and SC23 spot on the equator coming up. Also SOHO shows the monitors flat lined yet there is a SC24 spot. Very interesting.

  119. Posted Apr 14, 2008 at 6:43 PM | Permalink

    117 (Erl): Yeah, I know why it is done. But it still suffers from several problems. Here’s one: Imagine that the average Jan temp is 15C and the average Feb temp is 17C. Imagine that in this year, the actual temperature in Jan was also [by coincidence] 15C and in Feb was 17C, then the anomalies for Jan and Feb would be 15C-15C=0C and 17C-17C=0C. If the anomalies document “changes in the number of joules in the atmospheric system” then one would conclude that there has been no change in the number of joules in the system between Jan and Feb, although there plainly has been a change since the temperature is 2C in higher in Feb than in Jan [sorry for my Northern Hemisphere bias].
    But we probably will have to just add back in the average temperature values anyway. To me, it is conceptually clearer that the values for Jan and Feb are 15C and 17C, instead of 0C and 0C.

  120. Posted Apr 14, 2008 at 6:54 PM | Permalink

    118 (JimA): the region at 27 degrees North, is a real SC24 region [correct latitude and polarity change]. There has been three such regions in the last six months, but the first one didn’t line long-enough to be officially counted. This new one is official. Here it the numbering given by SWPC:

    I. Regions with Sunspots. Locations Valid at 14/2400Z
    Nmbr Location Lo Area Z LL NN Mag Type
    0990 N26E20 358 0010 Axx 01 01 Alpha

    so this is the second real spot although as small as they come [hence flat-lined monitors]. Cycle 24 has begun. But as you say, the old cycle spots are still dominating, so we are not really at solar minimum yet. By watching the growth in the number of new spots in the next year or so, we should be able to say something meaningful about how big the next cycle will be.

  121. Posted Apr 14, 2008 at 7:28 PM | Permalink

    119 (Erl): Since there are Bozos out there that will jump on #119, let me elaborate a bit more. If one wants to investigate the long-term changes in, say, January temperatures, then one can use the anomalies without too much trouble and plot a time series of many years of January anomalies [This is really just a renaming of the labels on the Y-axis]. The change from one January to the next could be thought of ['modeled'] as: observed change [i.e. anomaly] = some internally driven change + some externally driven change + some noise [instrumental and/or sampling-related and/or unjustified adjustments]. By studying the trend of the plotted values, one then makes various inferences or guesses or wishful extrapolations as desired. The hope is that the ‘noise’ somehow will wash out and the real trend(s) emerge after enough time. The use of one of the months [January in our example] as the data point just defines the time resolution of our trend analysis. One could also pick another month [e.g. February] and plot the time series of all Februaries, then make inferences, etc, about the trends in that series, etc. It is not a given [mostly likely it is not so] that the relative sizes of the three contributions [internal, external, noise] will be the same for all these 12 different time series [one for each month]. To plot the 12 series on the same plot and [worse] connecting each data point with its neighbors are thus not necessarily meaningful, so we shouldn’t do that.

  122. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 14, 2008 at 7:30 PM | Permalink

    119 (Leif)

    under the dubious assumption that the seasonal variation is the same from year to year.

    We are actually interested in identifying the variation from the average for a particular month and using our knowledge of the system, (and a bit of logic) to work out what is causing the variation. If we work simply with the absolute temperatures there will be no possibility of identification of the anomaly.

    e.g. if the anomaly from 1978-98 base increases in every month in a systematic fashion it’s very likely that something like CO2 that increases in the same way might be the culprit. If on the other hand the anomaly jumps up and falls away and the change coincides with similar change in some other variable that also goes up and down at precisely the same time we should have a close look and ask ourselves what mechanism might be involved. Seems to me that the likelihood that the two are connected increases with the number of coincidences. And I am not talking in terms of the dubious notion of ‘teleconnections’ or ‘astrology’. I am talking mechanisms capable of inspection and verification.

    Just for interests sake what about doing a comparison between anomalies in temperature in the troposphere and anomalies in the increase in the proportion of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. Then, subject it to a calculation of the correlation co-efficient.

  123. Posted Apr 14, 2008 at 8:18 PM | Permalink

    122 (Erl): See #121. As to investigate changes, dT/dt, that is the variation in actual T from actual month to actual month might be useful.

    if the anomaly jumps up and falls away and the change coincides with similar change in some other variable that also goes up and down at precisely the same time we should have a close look

    For this to be interesting, the ups/downs must happen all the time and not just some of the time. Or, if they happen only some of the time, then every time they don’t happen, the same third condition must be satisfied every time [and so on, recursively].

    I don’t think that my argument about the sum of the three contributions and that it is not a given that the relative sizes of these are invariant took hold. So we are not done with that one. No anomalies yet as they obscure things.

    To bring in CO2 at this point is not the time. Your theory didn’t mention that before [IIRC] so we should not go there [yet].

    And at this point we still somewhat stuck in #92. Not done there yet.

  124. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 14, 2008 at 10:21 PM | Permalink

    123, 119(Leif)

    “changes in the number of joules in the atmospheric system” then one would conclude that there has been no change in the number of joules in the system between Jan and Feb, although there plainly has been a change since the temperature is 2C in higher in Feb than in Jan

    I have no probelm with this. You are talking about the average temperature in the tropical troposphere and this is of interest. I show average temperatures for the NH and SH troposphere across the year in C of # 20. This wheel has already been invented. If you want to show average temperatures of the troposphere in the tropics this will add more information and we might learn something. But if we want to see changes from the norm we need anomalies. I take your point about sources of the variation in anomalies [internal, external, noise]. I can live with that.

    Just catching up with 121 and 93 that I had not seen.

    To plot the 12 series on the same plot and [worse] connecting each data point with its neighbors are thus not necessarily meaningful, so we shouldn’t do that.

    I have no problem with that suggestion.

    And at this point we still somewhat stuck in #92. Not done there yet.

    This one is lost on me. Can you be more specific? Please list any outstanding issues and I will do my best to resolve them.

    As to whether we use daily, monthly, or average of three months data, given the 27 day rotation of the sun I would have thought that three month smoothing of the data would be quite appropriate. Monthly data could incorporate lots of jerks that cancel each other and are therefore not effective in producing change in the atmosphere.

  125. Posted Apr 15, 2008 at 5:46 AM | Permalink

    124 (Erl):

    But if we want to see changes from the norm we need anomalies.

    This assumes that there is such a thing as the ‘norm’. In many geophysical situations, there is no norm. We can get back to that later [I had posted a long comment on that in another thread, but it seems that it was snipped from there]. My main point is that one should not mix anomalies and absolute data. For example, you [and others] show how wiggles in TSI line up with the temperature anomalies. This is apples and oranges. Let’s say that you find [as you claim] that there is an annual variation in TSI [even when reduced to a AU]. Just as for the temperature, we must then calculate the monthly average of TSI over [say 1978-2008] a long period to get the ‘norm’ as we did for temperature, then subtract that norm from actual TSI to get the anomalies. Only those can be compared to the anomalies in temperature. So, if insisting on anomalies, one must use anomalies for both time series, not just for one of them.

    # 92: This one is lost on me.

    It is this: the usefulness of a scientific theory stands and falls with its ability to predict, or stated different, to be shown false. So, if you find that solar activity has a certain effect, then that effect must disappear when there is no such activity. So we predict that during a Grand Minimum, such as the Maunder Minimum or the hypothesized upcoming Eddy Minimum, there should be no effect. If this prediction turns out wrong, then we might attempt to rescue the theory by saying that another variable must be in play also. But, then we must identify that other one(s) and show that it was present both out and in of Grand minima.

    About averaging: in correlating series one must never correlate running means and calculate correlation coefficients. This is just nonsense, as neighboring data points are not independent. If you want means [and that can be important in order to filter out the noise] then you must use the dataset consisting of independent means only. i.e. if you have monthly data you have 12 values per year. For a 3-month average, the data set must now have only 4 points per year, not 12. That is fine with me. But the plots you show in #20 have 12 points per year for temperature [even though they are 3-month means] and 365 points per year for TSI, even though they are 4-month means. This is wrong.

  126. Andrew
    Posted Apr 15, 2008 at 5:51 AM | Permalink

    114 (Leif):

    By the way, Lima city characteristic is its almost all the year round cloud covered sky, but now, in times of low SSN, we are having clear skies, just the opposite of Svenmarks´theory

    I somehow doubt that Lima city is over the ocean where the air is clean…The mechanism doesn’t operate everywhere you know.

  127. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 15, 2008 at 7:39 AM | Permalink

    125 (Leif)

    Let’s say that you find [as you claim] that there is an annual variation in TSI [even when reduced to a AU].

    No, I do not claim that there is an annual variation in TSI. What I am seeing is a solar cycle variation in TSI (11 years) with a high proportion of sudden increases that occur in Southern Hemisphere Summer, but only in recent times.

    Just as for the temperature, we must then calculate the monthly average of TSI over [say 1978-2008] a long period to get the ‘norm’ as we did for temperature, then subtract that norm from actual TSI to get the anomalies. Only those can be compared to the anomalies in temperature. So, if insisting on anomalies, one must use anomalies for both time series, not just for one of them.

    In this instance, just plain BS. If you want to apply it to CO2 and temperature anomalies that would be a different matter.

    the usefulness of a scientific theory stands and falls with its ability to predict, or stated different, to be shown false. So, if you find that solar activity has a certain effect, then that effect must disappear when there is no such activity. So we predict that during a Grand Minimum, such as the Maunder Minimum or the hypothesized upcoming Eddy Minimum, there should be no effect

    Just plain wrong. The response of the atmosphere to increases in irradiance depends upon its temperature, relative humidity and the absolute amount of water vapour contained. At solar minimum small changes in irradiance will have a much greater effect on cloud cover than the same change in irradiance would achieve at the end of an El Nino event when the ocean is warm, the atmospheric circulation is vigorous and evaporation levels are near peak. You must get away from this notion that a given change in irradiance must always produce a proportional change in temperature. It reveals a lack of understanding of the climate system.

    About averaging: in correlating series one must never correlate running means and calculate correlation coefficients.

    The notion of running correlations for these variables is, as I have said a number of times before, hopelessly inappropriate. Abandon it. When the relationship between two variables is conditioned by the state of a third , fourth or fifth variable a correlation coefficient is inappropriate.

    A question for you Leif: If we could control cloud cover for one month a year and we wished to increase the temperature of the oceans as much as we could, which month would we choose to clear away some cloud? Why? Please give this question your closest attention. I am equally interested to hear the response of any other person who cares to chance their arm.

  128. jae
    Posted Apr 15, 2008 at 1:23 PM | Permalink

    I’ll bite, just for grins: January :)

  129. Posted Apr 15, 2008 at 1:34 PM | Permalink

    128 (jae): Erl is in the Southern Hemisphere, so July might work better for him.

  130. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Apr 15, 2008 at 2:09 PM | Permalink

    Clear away clouds? The month where the planet’s axial tilt would result in the most direct angle of sunlight for those 30 days.

    A more vertical obliquity of the ecliptic? Whichever hemisphere happens to be tilted towards the sun during the day?

  131. zeb
    Posted Apr 15, 2008 at 2:42 PM | Permalink

    Erl (127)

    A question for you Leif: If we could control cloud cover for one month a year and we wished to increase the temperature of the oceans as much as we could, which month would we choose to clear away some cloud? Why? Please give this question your closest attention. I am equally interested to hear the response of any other person who cares to chance their arm.

    Assuming i) non other feedback process than heating from sun radiation directly on the ocean and ii) cloud cover removal is evenly distributed around the globe, the most heating effect of the ocean by direct sun radiation would be Dec-Jan?

    The simplest explanation I can come up with is [without using technical terms]: 1) SH has 70% of the ocean, 2) Dec-Jan is the time of year SH experience longest days, and 3) Earth is closest to the sun.

  132. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 15, 2008 at 4:23 PM | Permalink

    129 (Leif)Thanks Zeb and Jae. I will wait to see what works best for Leif.

  133. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Apr 15, 2008 at 6:30 PM | Permalink

    What am I, chopped liver? :)

    Oh, I forgot to mention. Dec-Jan (or whenever the tilt is the best for insolation directly entering) for the Southern Hemisphere assumes that more directly hitting water would raise the energy levels of the system more than hitting the Northern Hemisphere’s mix of water and land with more land. In order to do that (which I don’t know what assumption is true of course) you have to say that SH water is more effective at gaining and retaining heat than farmland, cities, and the like are at getting it into the air and then into the water.

    Interesting.

  134. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 15, 2008 at 7:20 PM | Permalink

    133 Sorry Sam. Thanks for your contribution. Yes, very interesting pssibilities once you begin to think of it.

  135. Posted Apr 15, 2008 at 9:44 PM | Permalink

    127 (Erl):

    No, I do not claim that there is an annual variation in TSI.

    yet in #20 you said [but maybe that is not a 'claim']:

    Once a year the sun must fetch planet Earth from the furthest extremity of its orbit and in doing so it exerts a force that speeds the Earths return. The effort costs the sun some rearrangement of the finely ordered patterns of interaction at the least dense periphery of its vast fusion furnace. Extra energy is radiated in the spectrum that attacks atmospheric molecules and this evaporates the Earths protective, reflective cover of moisture droplets.

    me: So, if insisting on anomalies, one must use anomalies for both time series, not just for one of them.

    you: In this instance, just plain BS. If you want to apply it to CO2 and temperature anomalies that would be a different matter.

    You ‘BS’ comment is not appreciated. The rest is not easy to understand. I take it that you say that for CO2 one should use anomalies for both, since that would not be BS? But, surely, for CO2 and Temp, one should not use anomalies. Imagine a climate scientist a hundred years from now looking at his graph for [absolute] CO2 versus his graph of temp anomalies [relative to the reference period 2078-2108] and wanting to compare that with the middle panel of the figure in #20 [reference period 1978-2008, say]. If Al Gore [just sake of argument] were correct the temps might be 5 degrees higher in a hundred years, yet the anomalies will be similar, since the large increase will be taken out by using a reference period 100 years on.
    So, for CO2 and temps: NO anomalies, so we don’t communicate here.

    Just plain wrong. The response of the atmosphere to increases in irradiance depends upon its temperature, relative humidity and the absolute amount of water vapour contained.

    But I thought that you argued that the response is in the anomaly, and now depends on the temperature, not on the departure from the norm. So, which is it?

    At solar minimum small changes in irradiance will have a much greater effect on cloud cover than the same change in irradiance would achieve at the end of an El Nino event when the ocean is warm, the atmospheric circulation is vigorous and evaporation levels are near peak.

    what have el Nino events to do with solar minimum? Unless you say that el Nino events only occur at solar maximum. If so, there would have been no el Ninos during the 70-year continuous solar minimum that we call the Maunder minimum [where there were no solar maxima]. So, again, your prediction is no el Ninos during the Maunder minimum.

    You must get away from this notion that a given change in irradiance must always produce a proportional change in temperature.

    If we are sitting at a modern minimum and a small TSI wiggle produce a temperature change, then I would expect the same change to take place if the same size wiggle took place during the Maunder minimum. As all solar evidence we have points to the sun behaving the same in any minimum, and hence no other solar parameters varying either.

    It reveals a lack of understanding of the climate system.

    This does not follow from the above.

    When the relationship between two variables is conditioned by the state of a third , fourth or fifth variable a correlation coefficient is inappropriate.

    no, it is not. These other variables just add noise to the system which reduces the correlation, but does not remove it. If you can see a hint of a correlation even if only some of the time, there is still a correlation coefficient and standard statistical methods can be used to gauge significance.

    A question for you Leif: If we could control cloud cover for one month a year and we wished to increase the temperature of the oceans as much as we could, which month would we choose to clear away some cloud? Why? Please give this question your closest attention. I am equally interested to hear the response of any other person who cares to chance their arm.

    I have no idea what you are getting at, clouds and temperature are related in a feedback cycle: less clouds, higher temps, more evaporation, more clouds, less temperature, less evaporation, less clouds, higher temps, etc.
    jae and my responses in 128 and 129 were just jokes [notice the 'for grins']. jae suggests January, because he is a Northern Hemisphere person and it is always good to heat the coldest month a bit. I replied that you might prefer July for the same raeson.

  136. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 15, 2008 at 11:18 PM | Permalink

    135 (Leif) Thanks for your long reply. I see we are at cross purposes in most of this and it is probably unproductive to pursue it further. The concept of anomalies is used to identify changes in what appears to be a regular cycle. In the case of the Earth it is the variation between the seasons that occurs in the space of 12 months. We look for the unusual and ask why the change. Is it in the Winter? Is it in Spring? If you want to use average temperatures for the tropical troposphere you will get a data series that is driven by the tilt of the Earths axis as it rotates around the sun and not much else.

    The sunspot cycle has an 11 year period, not a one year period. Very easy to see the anomalies when we look at sunspots for one whole cycle against another. Plot that against average temperatures in the tropical troposphere and what will you get? One series varies over 11 years and the other over a year. It would be very difficult to relate the two. If you want to do it go right ahead, either in the form of average temperatures, average irradiance or your calculated anomalies.

    I think that word you use for a relationship between two variables that is conditioned by a third is ‘contingent’.

    Now, the heat gain in the oceans when the clouds are driven away, (for whatever reason) may be contingent on the month that is occurs in.

    I noted in #20 that peak anomalies in tropical troposphere temperature tend to occur strongly in January. This is associated with a warming of the ocean as shown by the SOI.

    Jokes aside now. Would the heat gain in the oceans be any greater (when the clouds are reduced in area for whatever reason)if the clouds were removed in any other month other than January? I will take a Y or a N and hopefully a bit of explanation as to why.

  137. Posted Apr 16, 2008 at 6:16 AM | Permalink

    136 (Erl):

    If you want to use average temperatures for the tropical troposphere you will get a data series that is driven by the tilt of the Earths axis as it rotates around the sun and not much else.

    The temperature in the tropics hardly show any seasonal variation at all and is not driven by the seasonal variation of the tilt of the axis, especially not since th tropics involved equal amount of NH and SH. What was that you said about revealing lack of knowledge about the climate system…

    Would the heat gain in the oceans be any greater (when the clouds are reduced in area for whatever reason)if the clouds were removed in any other month other than January? I will take a Y or a N and hopefully a bit of explanation as to why.

    As I have explained before, Since the Earth receives 90 W/m2 more heat from the Sun in January than in July, the input would be greatest in January and thus the heat gain would be greatest.

    I noted in #20 that peak anomalies in tropical troposphere temperature tend to occur strongly in January.

    The mean anomaly in any month (incl. Jan) is zero by definition. Maybe all you are saying is that the temperature varies more in January. That would give you more positive peaks, if you ignore the equally frequent negative valleys.

  138. Posted Apr 16, 2008 at 6:26 AM | Permalink

    136 (Erl): maybe you are right and it is a lost cause. Every point you raise I try hard to answer specifically, while you hardly ever do the same for the points I raise. Instead you bring up a different issue. In the legal RFA process, that is called not being responsive to the request for admission and is tantamount to admission. That way one does not make progress, that I’ll agree with. So, to spare our readers, I’ll stop.

  139. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 16, 2008 at 7:11 AM | Permalink

    As I have explained before, Since the Earth receives 90 W/m2 more heat from the Sun in January than in July, the input would be greatest in January and thus the heat gain would be greatest.

    Thanks Leif. That contribution by you was very important to my thinking about the issue of the suns relationship with the Earth. I thank you heartily for improving my understanding of the importance of the orbital factor.

    There is an additional factor that also helps and that is the very high proportion of sea to land in the southern hemisphere. Oceans store heat much better than land masses. This is why the globe reaches its highest temperature in July when the large land masses of the Northern Hemisphere return energy to the atmosphere as fast as it comes in. The temperature in the troposphere is 5K less in January than it is in July. This reflects a much higher rate of ocean absorbtion of the suns irradiance in January than in July.

    Can I ask you to take this on board: In a situation where El Niño’s are randomly distributed in their incidence across all months, occurring at a set frequency and a set intensity, we would expect a stable global temperature (in the absence of any other contributing factor).

    A shift to greater incidence at a time when the Southern Hemisphere is having summer, at no greater frequency, or intensity would produce a rise in global temperature.

    Can we agree on that?

  140. Posted Apr 16, 2008 at 8:06 AM | Permalink

    139 (Erl):

    There is an additional factor that also helps and that is the very high proportion of sea to land in the southern hemisphere

    The tropics are not the southern hemisphere and I thought we had agreed upon the tropics.

    This reflects a much higher rate of ocean absorption of the sun’s irradiance in January than in July.

    whatever you are trying to say is not reflected in the heat contents of the oceans:

    You might benefit by reading up on this, e.g. here

    Maybe also a refresher on what El Niño is [suppression of the thermocline in the ocean, not external heating]:
    “The development of the El Niño phenomenon has its origins in the western tropical Pacific Ocean. Easterly trade winds relax and a westerly wind anomaly develops, exciting eastward propagating Kelvin waves along the equator. These waves suppress the thermocline, deepening the surface mixed layer. As the result, warm sea surface temperature (SST) anomalies develop and spread eastward to the South American coast.

  141. zeb
    Posted Apr 16, 2008 at 8:21 AM | Permalink

    Leif (140) Nice graph. The T derivative seems to be highest in Dec-Jan indicating the highest heating rate (I have not read the paper though…)

  142. Jesper
    Posted Apr 16, 2008 at 8:22 AM | Permalink

    125 (Leif)

    About averaging: in correlating series one must never correlate running means and calculate correlation coefficients. This is just nonsense, as neighboring data points are not independent.

    I think you are overstating things here. In some ways correlating 12-month (or 3-month) running means, rather than annual (or seasonal) samples is preferable. One just needs to be aware of the implications.

    If I want to see the correlation between two series at annual resolution (but with monthly resolution available), I could simply sample the Jan-Dec means, for instance, and correlate the two annual series. But arbitrarily choosing a Jan-Dec season introduces a potential seasonal bias. So, it would be better to calculate the correlations for Jan-Dec, Feb-Jan, Mar-Feb, and so on. Or, in other words, calculate the correlation of the 12-month running means at monthly resolution. It’s not any more wrong than sampling Jan-Dec alone. In fact it makes better use of the available data, but one should be clear that there is only 1 degree of freedom per year, not 12, and calculate the significance accordingly.

  143. Posted Apr 16, 2008 at 8:29 AM | Permalink

    141 (Erl):

    the T derivative seems to be highest in Dec-Jan indicating the highest heating rate

    The slopes of the curves are almost constant for ~5 months, for the WO actually small in January. No sharp dT/dt in Dec-Jan. There is a difference between believing what you see and seeing what you believe. That is where the statistical analysis comes in.

  144. Richard Sharpe
    Posted Apr 16, 2008 at 8:41 AM | Permalink

    Leif (140):

    Are the axes on that graph labeled correctly? Surely the oceans cannot have negative energy at any time.

    It looks to me like a graph of the anomaly from some mean or something.

  145. zeb
    Posted Apr 16, 2008 at 8:45 AM | Permalink

    Leif (143) Agree Leif. Many considerations can come into play [both simple and complex] explaining this performance. Still it seems clear it is those 5 months you hint on that provides most heating [no surprise to anybody that has discussed this afai can see].

    I have no clue if this can be attributed to the simple postulate of favourable ocean/land ratio, or the other simple postulate of closeness to the sun, or other factors – does the paper suggest anything in this respect?

  146. Posted Apr 16, 2008 at 8:46 AM | Permalink

    144 (Richard): What is plotted are deviations from the ANNUAL mean values [constant across the graph].

  147. Posted Apr 16, 2008 at 8:49 AM | Permalink

    144,145: click on the link and read the paper. It is not long and not complicated.

  148. Posted Apr 16, 2008 at 10:24 AM | Permalink

    142 (Jesper):

    I think you are overstating things here. In some ways correlating 12-month (or 3-month) running means, rather than annual (or seasonal) samples is preferable. One just needs to be aware of the implications.

    In this plot I correlate two things that are closely related, namely the MgII index solar UV and the F10.7 radio flux:

    The running means makes the correlations look better than they are. R^2 goes up to approach the perfect correlation (=1) as the smoothing window gets larger and larger. The scatter of the points [or lack thereof] gives a false impression of the real real.

    Plotting means is fine, running means is not.

    Here is another example [from NASA's solar forecaster] showing how plotting running means gives the false impression of a smooth progression, somehow regulated by simple physics:

  149. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Apr 16, 2008 at 11:53 AM | Permalink

    The lines are drops or raises from 10^22 J in the top 250 meters of water, it looks like.

    Looks like the max is Feb-Apr (annual harmonic) or Mar-May (world ocean). Min/Max NH Feb/Aug and SH Mar/Sep.

    The rises and drops are greatest in the SH, so it appears that the SH water is better at soaking up energy but worse at holding it in. So overall, NH is +/- 6 and SH is +/- 10 So the land (one would imagine) is buffering things, apparently.

    But then again, the energy/heat does get moved around or blocked, so what’s the whole story of how much energy is in the top of the water?sn5-

  150. Posted Apr 16, 2008 at 12:03 PM | Permalink

    149 (Sam):

    The lines are drops or raises from 10^22 J in the top 250 meters of water, it looks like.

    Just clicking on the link will immediately show you that the values are deviations from the ANNUAL means [see eg. (1)].

  151. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Apr 16, 2008 at 1:36 PM | Permalink

    Yes, that’s what I meant. The chart shows monthly departures from a yearly average. Everything’s annual means and departures from them in climate science. (Well, okay, the global mean surface temperature anomaly trend (GMSTAT!) is a departure from the mean of a 30 year period by months combined into years. But basically the same, yes.

    As I posted on Dot Earth to something Andrew Revkin wrote, a comment about : “The entwined climate/energy/development challenge”

    This isn’t about global warming, “AGW” is simply one facet of something considerably more complex and long-term.

  152. Edward
    Posted Apr 16, 2008 at 2:00 PM | Permalink

    http://www.sciencebits.com/SloanAndWolfendale

    The subject is far from over.

  153. Posted Apr 16, 2008 at 2:15 PM | Permalink

    152 (Edward): this was hashed over in Unthreaded #33, starting at #123.

  154. Edward
    Posted Apr 16, 2008 at 2:15 PM | Permalink

    http://icecap.us/index.php/go/new-and-cool/P10/

    Looks like Svensmark and Svalgaard have major disagreements. I knew this attack was coming and I warned Svensmark. This has happened many times before just like the hockey stick attack. It is like clockwork.

  155. Posted Apr 16, 2008 at 2:47 PM | Permalink

    154 (Edward):

    I knew this attack was coming

    You mean the Sloan&Wolfendale? If you take the trouble to go to Unthreaded#33 you will notice that I don’t quibble with Shaviv’s 0.1C solar cycle effect. It is so low in the noise that it could well be; doesn’t matter if it is.

  156. Chris Knight
    Posted Apr 16, 2008 at 3:08 PM | Permalink

    The AMSU-A temperatures satisfyingly show that stratospheric temperatures follow the solar irradiation of the upper atmosphere, with the maximum at the beginning of the year, minimum in mid summer, but the lower tropospheric temperatures follow the northern hemispheric heating of the continental landmasses, with the maximum in the middle of the year and the minimums towards the depths of the northern winter.

    Has anyone worked out the corresponding energies involved?

  157. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 16, 2008 at 3:32 PM | Permalink

    140, 143 (Leif)
    My goodness, there are lurkers. That’s great.

    What I am saying is very much reflected in the graph that you have put up in 140. Both Southern and World Ocean heat content peaks at the end of Southern Hemisphere Summer as one would expect. In the same way daily temperature tends to peak in the afternoon rather than at mid-day. So, world ocean heat content peaks in March-April at the point where the heating stimulus to the Southern Ocean falls below the point where energy gains can be made.

    Great graph. Shows the total joules of energy involved taking into account not just temperature but the actual volume of water involved. In point of fact the NH ocean is always warmer than the southern in actual temperature because of the heavy reduction in cloud area in NH summer. But, it is a very small proportion of the whole.

    Re the refresher you suggest. Quoting the conventional wisdom is a recipe for stagnation. It has never respected the facts. It is an invention of the warmers. It is head in the sand stuff, willing suspension of disbelief, fiction.

    El Nino is a fact of life. It involves an increase in the temperature of the oceans.

    You didn’t answer my question which I restate here:

    In a situation where El Niño’s are randomly distributed in their incidence across all months, occurring at a set frequency and a set intensity, we would expect a stable global temperature (in the absence of any other contributing factor).

    A shift to greater incidence at a time when the Southern Hemisphere is having summer, at no greater frequency, or intensity would produce a rise in global temperature.

    Can we agree on that?

  158. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 16, 2008 at 3:35 PM | Permalink

    156 Chris Knight
    Great contribution.

  159. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 16, 2008 at 3:49 PM | Permalink

    149 (Sam)
    There is a virus on that clouds link Sam. Looks a great site. Better get Mike to snip it out.

  160. Posted Apr 16, 2008 at 4:38 PM | Permalink

    157 (Erl): I didn’t answer because it didn’t make sense. It’s like asking would you agree that unicorns have white horns? I thought we had established back in #92 the fact “F1: ENSO is externally imposed caused solely by solar activity.”, and the Sun does not know about Southern Summer.

    Re the refresher you suggest. Quoting the conventional wisdom is a recipe for stagnation. It has never respected the facts. It is an invention of the warmers. It is head in the sand stuff, willing suspension of disbelief, fiction.

    El Nino is a fact of life. It involves an increase in the temperature of the oceans.

    Your last statement is not contradicted by conventional wisdom which says precisely that. And you go a little too hard on conventional wisdom. There is such a thing as generally accepted science. The quote I gave explains the mechanism causing El Ninos. To credibly doubt that one, you must show why it doesn’t work. Your rhetoric does not do that. It falls under the following fallacy [wikipedia]:

    Proof by verbosity is a term used to describe an excessively verbose [...] proof that may or may not actually prove the result. Such proofs are most often presented by students who don’t fully grasp the concepts they are writing about. Students presenting such proofs often either hope to hide their lack of understanding or are uncertain how extensive their proof is expected to be.
    The term is commonly used jokingly amongst colleagues reviewing their work when one proof discussed is much longer than others presented for the same problem.

    Proof by verbosity is also used colloquially in forensic debate to describe a logical fallacy (sometimes called “argumentum verbosium”) that tries to persuade by overwhelming those considering an argument with such a volume of material that the argument sounds plausible, superficially appears to be well-researched, and that is so laborious to untangle and check supporting facts that the argument is allowed to slide by unchallenged. It is the fallacy epitomized by the familiar quote: “If you can’t dazzle them with your brilliance, then baffle them with your bullsh.”

    It is good that you are beginning to accept that the peaks are not in Dec-Jan as many posts were talking about, so perhaps a tiny step forward has been taken. Now, the next step concerns the tropics. The great graph integrates over all latitudes. For the tropics, there is no concept of summer, so we need to get off the summer/winter thing.

  161. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 16, 2008 at 4:51 PM | Permalink

    160 (Leif)

    I will ignore the abuse.

    I say: “El Nino is a fact of life. It involves an increase in the temperature of the oceans.”

    You say: “Your last statement is not contradicted by conventional wisdom which says precisely that.”

    That’s good.

    Let’s forget about the causation. It doesn’t matter at this point.

    Now, can we return to the question.

  162. Posted Apr 16, 2008 at 5:24 PM | Permalink

    161 (Erl): well, in #127 you thought BS appropriate. Maybe it’s the direction that has you bothered. Now, matters of protocol are important; the question here is: why did you inject the statement “El Nino is a fact of life. It involves an increase in the temperature of the oceans” just after having junked conventional wisdom’s statement of the same? The usual reason for such gratuitous injections is to give the impression of a solid argument by saying something that is true and not in doubt. You could go on with more of the same as you have done in the past. This leads straight into the Proof by verbosity. A direct consequence of this approach is your next statement: “That’s good”, implying you’re patronizingly throwing a bone to conventional wisdom for agreeing with you. Do you see the pattern?

    Let’s forget about the causation. It doesn’t matter at this point.

    What causation? Making a wild guess that you mean this: “F1: ENSO is externally imposed caused solely by solar activity.”, then it does matter, because if ENSO is not externally caused, then the question becomes circular: if ENSO is a signature of high temperature, then why ask if I agree that ENSO means higher temperature? Without causation, there is circularity, and thus no meaningful answer. In any event, what is the purpose of the question?

  163. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 16, 2008 at 5:50 PM | Permalink

    162 (Leif)
    Let’s just focus on the question.

    In a situation where El Niño’s are randomly distributed in their incidence across all months, occurring at a set frequency and a set intensity, we would expect a stable global temperature (in the absence of any other contributing factor).

    A shift to greater incidence at a time when the Southern Hemisphere is having summer, at no greater frequency, or intensity would produce a rise in global temperature.

    Can we agree on that?

    We do not need to argue about causation in order to answer this question. This is a simple mechanical thing that relates to the orbit of the Earth and the distribution of land and sea between the hemispheres.

    I don’t want to get into a discussion about how a depression of the thermacline in the Pacific might cause an increase in sea surface temperatures around the globe. (and an increase in the jouls of energy within the worlds oceans). That is the explanation offered in the conventional wisdom. Whether I buy that or not has no bearing on the question that I am asking.

    The purpose of the question will be revealed in the fullness of time.

  164. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Apr 16, 2008 at 6:13 PM | Permalink

    Erl #159 Lot of good stuff there about clouds.

    But I see what you mean. I think that “virus” is a downloader or some other kind of malware. An HTM page for the cache. I didn’t notice it at first ’till I poked around.

    Leif, Erl: Do you think perhaps the short- and long-term weather and climate patterns are rather incomprehensible with the amount and type of our past and current data? I see you going back and forth on many matters of opinion on this one, anything scientific (empirical) to nail this coffin shut?

  165. Posted Apr 16, 2008 at 6:18 PM | Permalink

    163 (Erl): That is not the way it works. It is legit and necessary at times to ask why a question is relevant – the judge does that all the time. And we are getting out of focus. We were discussing tropical temperatures, not global ones, so will have to ask why we are going global.

    If you define an El Nino as any increase in tropical temperature, then obviously, these will come more often when the Earth is closest to the Sun. This has nothing to do with Southern Hemisphere or Summer. As we move away from the tropics the excess water in the South eventually wins, so the question has to be more precise and its purpose explained so that one can judge if it is precise enough.

  166. Posted Apr 16, 2008 at 6:29 PM | Permalink

    164 (Sam):

    Leif, Erl: Do you think perhaps the short- and long-term weather and climate patterns are rather incomprehensible with the amount and type of our past and current data? I see you going back and forth on many matters of opinion on this one, anything scientific (empirical) to nail this coffin shut?

    We go back and forth because in contrast to Erl I know diddlysquat about the climate [apart from some of physics that underlies it], but I do know VERY VERY much about how to conduct a valid scientific inquiry and data analysis into complicated matters [having spent 45 years doing so]. Erl may know everything about the climate, but he knows [as is evident] diddlysquat about how to conduct a valid scientific inquiry and data analysis into complicated matters.

    Hence my insistence on precise definitions, goal setting, and up-front determination of what would be falsification of the theory. I believe that the lack of lurkers before on Erl’s stuff was that it just was too vague and rambling. Now that we are beginning [oh so slowly] to get into focus with more precision, there are meaningful questions and comments from the lurkers.

  167. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 16, 2008 at 6:52 PM | Permalink

    165 (Leif)

    We were discussing tropical temperatures, not global ones, so will have to ask why we are going global.

    Answer: We are concerned with all latitudes. We are concerned with the temperature of the whole globe and in particular why the Northern Hemisphere has warmed strongly since 1980 and the Southern Hemisphere has not. Some places like Antarctica have cooled.

    The tropics are important because the watts per square metre is greatest there and as a result sea surface temperatures are also greatest there. The extra tropics are important because in summer the sun is actually over the tropic of Cancer or Capricorn and the zone of maximum energy input actually spreads beyond the tropics.

    If you define an El Nino as any increase in tropical temperature, then obviously, these will come more often when the Earth is closest to the Sun. This has nothing to do with Southern Hemisphere or Summer. As we move away from the tropics the excess water in the South eventually wins, so the question has to be more precise and its purpose explained so that one can judge if it is precise enough.

    I want to focus on the jouls of energy in the oceans as depicted in the graph you showed in #140. That was very helpful.

    The opening statement of the paper that gave us that graph goes like this:

    The heat content of the global ocean plays a critical role in the earth’s heat balance for the climatological annual cycle [Ellis et al., 1978] and for interannual-to-decadal scales [Levitus et al., 2001].

    So, obviously we must pay attention to the timing of the episodes when the increase in ocean temperature occurs because this has a great bearing on the amount of energy that is picked up by the ocean as a whole. If they occur in SH summer ocean heat content and global temperatures will increase and if they occur in NH summer ocean heat content will fall and global temperatures will also fall. This is the bit about interannual-to-decadal scales in the quote above.

    But if you don’t want to recognise this, just say so.

  168. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 16, 2008 at 7:35 PM | Permalink

    164 (Sam)

    anything scientific (empirical) to nail this coffin shut?

    We dont need anything more than Leifs diagram in 140 that shows the dominant role of the SH ocean in the dynamic of global ocean heat gain.

    The NH functions as a reflector. The SH is an absorber. Depending upon which hemisphere faces the sun, a heating episode will have a very different impact upon total joules of energy in the worlds oceans.

  169. Posted Apr 16, 2008 at 7:38 PM | Permalink

    167 (Erl): So we are no longer talking ENSO or tropics in spite of the middle panel of #20? And in spite of all the discussions about the height of the tropopause in the tropics and the direct heating from UV that was supposed to be highest in the tropics, etc?

    Here I document your emphasis on the tropics:
    20: Why is there currently so much cloud in the tropics of the Southern Hemisphere?
    49: The anomalous warming event is therefore associated with strong absorption of energy by the ocean in the tropics
    77: Or should we begin at the very beginning? ENSO heating events relate to a generalised warming across the tropics and feed into global temperatures?
    81: So, I am talking about a phenomenon that affects all tropical latitudes, not just the Pacific Ocean.
    94: Yes, heating episodes in the tropics feeds into global temperatures. The tropics has a heat surplus that gets distributed.
    99: The effect is focused in the tropics so the data to use is tropical temperature at the surface and various levels of the atmosphere.
    116: When the upper atmosphere is not being warmed by UV radiation, cloud cover increases across the tropics.
    167: The tropics are important because the watts per square metre is greatest there and as a result sea surface temperatures are also greatest there

    Now, the tropics was your idea and emphasis. I have not tried to steer you into that. Maybe the best reason is this figure from the paper you like so much [so do I]:

    It shows where the distribution of the size of the seasonal variation of energy content of the oceans, not the heat content of the said oceans. As the paper says, the variation is largest at 40 degrees latitude in both hemispheres [for very obvious reasons]. Across the tropics there is hardly any variation at all, as we all should know. [I have lived in Singapore from time to time {a daughter used to live there}, so I know too]

    So, If you don’t want to talk about ENSO any more, then I take it that your question is moot.

    And your parting shot:

    But if you don’t want to recognise this, just say so

    is not helpful. We have issues with protocol and with attitude that seem to outweigh those of science, but, hey, science is “head in the sand stuff”. :-)
    There is such a thing as scientific conduct.

  170. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 16, 2008 at 7:43 PM | Permalink

    164 (Sam)

    And let’s not get tied up in an argument as to whether that extra energy is internally generated, comes from some sort of East- West redistribution process, or comes from the sun. It appears in the top 150 metres and the heat gain is spread right round the globe. As the heat is gained outgoing long wave energy takes a dip. That implicates the clouds.

  171. Posted Apr 16, 2008 at 8:15 PM | Permalink

    170 (Erl):

    And let’s not get tied up in an argument as to whether that extra energy is internally generated, comes from some sort of East-West redistribution process, or comes from the sun

    I thought that was the whole argument. You are here in Svalgaard#5 because you claimed the sun was the driver of this.

  172. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 16, 2008 at 8:37 PM | Permalink

    171 (Leif)

    You are here in Svalgaard#5 because you claimed the sun was the driver of this.

    Exactly.

    But I dont need to talk about that at all to ask what the result for the Earths heat budget will be if the heating event occurs in January or July.

    We can deal with the causation as a seperate issue entirely. First we must agree on the nature of the event and the variable impact according to the time that it occurs. In the latter we have a strong mechanism accounting for secular change in global temperatures over interannual and decadal (and longer) time scales.

    169 (Leif) I see the strong fluctuation in energy in the extratropics as a result of energy transfer from the tropics. I think you would do too.

  173. bender
    Posted Apr 16, 2008 at 9:54 PM | Permalink

    Saying that “the sun is the driver” and that “solar cycle variation is the driver” are two different things. It doesn’t take a periodic input to get a pendulum swinging.

  174. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 17, 2008 at 12:45 AM | Permalink

    173 (Bender)

    Saying that “the sun is the driver” and that “solar cycle variation is the driver” are two different things. It doesn’t take a periodic input to get a pendulum swinging.

    This is a good distinction to make. The sun can be the driver without the variation following whole of solar cycle schedules.

    Pulses in irradiance seem to have a strong annual component that tends to consistently strike in November -March for a period of time and then swings to May-August. Strange to say, periods of a single fairly consistent orientation have recently run to 30 years length or about three solar cycles. About 1976 seems to have been a turning point. Recently, there are signs of erratic behaviour that may precede another turning point.

    There is capacity for pendulum type swings in the response of the atmosphere. A strong El Nino tends to be followed by a strong La Nina and the reverse. This has to do with water vapour content and ocean temperature. However, it is the pulses of irradiance that seem to establish the schedule. Then, there is this other subtlety. A La Nina will be reversed much more strongly by a pulse in irradiance in January than in July.

    Looking forward, the upswing in solar cycle 24, as it occurs, should, (if I am correct) reverse the current La Nina and the strength of the resulting El Nino will be determined by when that pulse in irradiance is initiated. If it falls in July, it will not be a repeat of 1997-8.

    What all this boils down to is that we should pay close attention to the degree of opening of the atmospheric window (cloud free area) in summer. There is the normal opening and on top of that a burst of irradiance can stretch it further.

  175. stargazer
    Posted Apr 17, 2008 at 1:19 AM | Permalink

    VIRUS ALERT…… THE CLOUDS LINK ON 149 tried to install a Virus to my computer

  176. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 17, 2008 at 4:44 AM | Permalink

    173 (Bender)
    Re my statement in 174 that

    Recently, there are signs of erratic behaviour that may precede another turning point.

    This may be seen as an insupportable statement by some so I thought I had better try and cover my posterior.

    In fact the signs of gradual change can be seen in the decay of the correlation between the Southern Oscillation Index and geopotential height in the tropics, an indirect measure of the heating of the atmosphere. The diagrams below indicate those parts of the atmosphere above the Pacific that heat strongly when the SOI becomes negative (rise in ocean temperatures).

    The strong negative correlation that existed between January SOI and geopotential height prior to 2000 is not so evident in the last five years. The Earth is losing its dominant heating stimulus, a conjunction of El Ninos and southern Hemisphere summer.

    Notice the lack of correlation in July. It’s fair to say that warming of the atmosphere (and the Oceans) has been tied in with El Nino events that are well expressed in January. Heating events have rarely occurred in July. The SOI might indicate El Nino conditions in July but the tropical troposphere is probably at a seasonal low in temperature at this time and the Southern Oceans are cooling. So, both geopotential height and SOI trend down and the correlation is positive.

    My post #20 indicates that positive anomalies in the tropical troposphere are co-incident with strong increases in irradiance (note high incidence in January) and a rise in the SOI (sign reversed so it rises during El Ninos in that diagram.)

    The correlations are produced at http://www.cdc.noaa.gov/Correlation/

  177. Marshall
    Posted Apr 17, 2008 at 7:34 AM | Permalink

    Mr. Svalgaard

    given that the sun is slowing down and allowing more cosmic rays to hit the atmosphere now. Do you believe CRT has more validity looking at current temperatures?

  178. Posted Apr 17, 2008 at 8:20 AM | Permalink

    177 (Marshall):

    given that the sun is slowing down and allowing more cosmic rays to hit the atmosphere now. Do you believe CR/T has more validity looking at current temperatures?

    One swallow does not a summer make. If the correlation is based on, say, 20 years then 21 years is not going to improve the significance a whole lot. As there could be other causes [e.g. Erl's claim of UV heating] of a solar connection, one could say that a cooling down is also consistent with those and not necessarily due to CR/T. So, the jury is out on this. Then there is the AGW crowd [and others] that will say that the cooling is just La Nina. Jumping to conclusions is a favorite pass time among climate ‘discussers’ but is not helpful.

  179. Chris Knight
    Posted Apr 17, 2008 at 4:02 PM | Permalink

    In 156 (me) I posted a link to the AMSU-A site, where there is now a 10 year record of global atmosphere temperatures at various levels in the troposphere and stratosphere. The troposphere, tropopause and stratosphere clearly have different annual temperature signatures.

    On an annual basis, whereas the stratosphere is predominantly responding to solar irradiance, with temperature peaking in January, with a minimum around July; the tropopause is essentially flat; and the troposphere responds in the main to northern hemisphere summer temperatures, with peaks of temperature in July, and minima near December.

    Of interest to this thread is the uppermost stratospheric temperatures – those which have the least earthly, and most solar influence. The graph is not symmetrical – there is a broad peak in January, a sharp drop from maximum to minimum, a sharp trough in July, and after a similarly sharp rise, a shoulder in the September to December period. Why?

    Over the span of these data, are there any specific (solar) events which are apparent in the record?

  180. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Apr 17, 2008 at 5:10 PM | Permalink

    I actually wasn’t lurking before, just came in to see what the discussion was here in #5 since I see the little tidbit on the right side of the site and see you talking back and forth and wanted to know what it was. :)

    But it’s good to have clear and well defined boundries and goalposts, sure.

    Thanks.

  181. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 17, 2008 at 5:40 PM | Permalink

    The data actually represents the three months centred on the month shown.

    This data seems to support the following observations:
    1. Ocean temperatures in the Pacific are very different before and after 1976

    2. After 1976 a small seasonal maximum appears in January that is consistent with the irradiance peaks and temperature anomalies that are shown in my post #20 occuring at and around that month. Because there is so much ocean in the southern hemisphere energy is readily absorbed into the Earth system at this time.

    3. Prior to 1976 there is no seasonal peak in January but a pronounced seasonal peak in July consistent with peaks in irradiance occuring in the main during NH summer. This can be confirmed, somewaht laborously, by examining SOI and sunspot data. Irradiance peaks in NH summer effectively waste heat to the atmosphere because the NH is such a good reflector, having much less ocean to absorb sunlight. Nevertheless ocean temperatures in the Nino region are warmer in NH summer than SH summer reflecting the marked reduction in cloud cover that occurs when the atmosphere is warmed. This occurs despite the reduced intensity of irradiance while the Earth is at the furthest distance from the sun.

    In my view the incidence of heating episodes, whether falling in NH summer or in SH summer has marked consequences for trends in tropical and global temperature.

    If this effect on global temperature could be quantified, would it leave much variation to be accounted for by the dreaded AGG.

  182. bender
    Posted Apr 17, 2008 at 6:34 PM | Permalink

    Error bars for #181?

  183. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 17, 2008 at 6:50 PM | Permalink

    18 (Bender)
    None provided in original data and I am not smart enough to get them.

  184. bender
    Posted Apr 17, 2008 at 7:35 PM | Permalink

    Erl, you’re using excel. Assuming you have the raw data in hand, for each month’s data, x, just plot:
    mean(x) +/- tinv(0.05,n-1)*stdev(x)/sqrt(n)

    where tinv() is the inverse t distribution statistical function, 0.05 is the alpha for 95% confidence level, n is the number of years in the vector, and x is the vector of data, and stdev() and sqrt() are the standard veiation and swuare root funcitons.

    Your blue curve will have n=27. Your pink curve will have n=30.
    This will give you four additional sets of curves, bracketing the two you’ve already got.

    Your argument is getting interesting.

  185. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 17, 2008 at 7:50 PM | Permalink

    184 (Bender)
    Thanks for the encouragement. No, I have no raw data, just the monthly figures as provided at http://www.cpc.noaa.gov/products/analysis_monitoring/ensostuff/ensoyears.shtml

    Described as: DESCRIPTION: Warm (red) and cold (blue) episodes based on a threshold of +/- 0.5oC for the Oceanic Niño Index (ONI) [3 month running mean of ERSST.v3 SST anomalies in the Niño 3.4 region (5oN-5oS, 120o-170oW)], based on the 1971-2000 base period.
    You can track back on the ERSST.v3 SST anomalies via the site.

  186. bender
    Posted Apr 17, 2008 at 8:21 PM | Permalink

    #185
    Erl, that is sufficient for making the calculation requested. The vector of n values means one value for each year.

    (It’s not strictly correct to interpret these as 95% error bars, as the season value for DJF is not independent from the seasonal value JFM. But let’s not worry about that just yet.)

  187. VekTor
    Posted Apr 17, 2008 at 9:20 PM | Permalink

    459 from #4 (Erl):

    If there was more irradiance in July than in January a lot of the heat that is immediately returned as Outgoing Long Wave Radiation from heating land masses would be speedily lost. Because the currently enhanced radiation benefiting the Southern hemisphere that is probably well absorbed into the Southern Hemisphere ocean (by virtue of the very large cloud free areas in the tropics that manifests in neutral to El Nino times) it is geo-effective and keeps the Earth warmer.

    An ice age would be promoted if the situation were reversed. It only takes a little bit of cooling for the massive land area of the Northern Hemisphere to acquire more highly reflective snow in winter. It will be interesting to observe the consequences for ‘length of frost free growing season’ of the current La Nina. La Nina brings a strong collapse in water temperatures in the southern hemisphere. There are strong knock on effects in terms of the chill experienced in the Northern Hemisphere winter as demonstrated in 2007-8.

    Erl, I’m wondering… have you considered the long-term effects of axis precession on the Earth’s climate, in light of the way you’re viewing these sorts of transfer functions?

    What would you expect the effects to be on Earth’s climate if you precessed the axis forward, say 90 degrees? 180? 270?

    If you can explain what you would expect the transfer functions to look like under any given axial orientation, could you then use that to look back through the long-term climate records and see if you can recover the expected results through, say, one or more full Milankovitch cycles?

    If so, your approach might serve to offer insight into some of the physical mechanisms that might be driving climate change. If, however, your approach is not as robust under different axial orientations, then perhaps this might give you some insight into whether you’re trying to fit the data into a model that may be “right” for our current circumstances only by accident.

    Some food for thought, anyway.

  188. VekTor
    Posted Apr 17, 2008 at 9:22 PM | Permalink

    459 from #4 (Erl):

    If there was more irradiance in July than in January a lot of the heat that is immediately returned as Outgoing Long Wave Radiation from heating land masses would be speedily lost. Because the currently enhanced radiation benefiting the Southern hemisphere that is probably well absorbed into the Southern Hemisphere ocean (by virtue of the very large cloud free areas in the tropics that manifests in neutral to El Nino times) it is geo-effective and keeps the Earth warmer.

    An ice age would be promoted if the situation were reversed. It only takes a little bit of cooling for the massive land area of the Northern Hemisphere to acquire more highly reflective snow in winter. It will be interesting to observe the consequences for ‘length of frost free growing season’ of the current La Nina. La Nina brings a strong collapse in water temperatures in the southern hemisphere. There are strong knock on effects in terms of the chill experienced in the Northern Hemisphere winter as demonstrated in 2007-8.

    Erl, I’m wondering… have you considered the long-term effects of axis precession on the Earth’s climate, in light of the way you’re viewing these sorts of transfer functions?

    What would you expect the effects to be on Earth’s climate if you precessed the axis forward, say 90 degrees? 180? 270?

    If you can explain what you would expect the transfer functions to look like under any given axial orientation, could you then use that to look back through the long-term climate records and see if you can recover the expected results through, say, one or more full Milankovitch cycles?

    If so, your approach might serve to offer insight into some of the physical mechanisms that might be driving climate change. If, however, your approach is not as robust under different axial orientations, then perhaps this might give you some insight into whether you’re trying to fit the data into a model that may be “right” for our current circumstances only by accident.

    Some food for thought, anyway.

  189. VekTor
    Posted Apr 17, 2008 at 9:32 PM | Permalink

    Whoops… please snip 188 and this one! Both times I submitted, I received a 403. Hmm.

  190. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 17, 2008 at 10:09 PM | Permalink

    187 (VecTor)
    Yes,it certainly bears thinking about but its tiny steps at the moment. Validation is the key. Surveying the past is important to establish the intensity and persistence of the swing between heating the NH or heating the SH that renders the Earth either a reflector or an absorber. There is little doubt that a swing to more persisitent illumination of the Northern Hemisphere will paradoxically, tend to make that hemisphere and the globe as a whole cooler.

    It is necessary to see whether sunspots, gemagnetic influences or the SOI are good proxies for changes in irradiance or more particularly changes in energetic short wave radiation (if that is indeed the agent of change in the atmospheric window).

  191. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 17, 2008 at 10:11 PM | Permalink

    184 (Bender)
    Clear as mud. I am no mathematician.

  192. bender
    Posted Apr 18, 2008 at 5:22 AM | Permalink

    Erl, for each column in that table, you have already calculated the mean, as a row statistic. Just go one step further. For each column calculate stdev(x) and multiply each by tinv(n)/sqrt(n). Put it in another row. Then calculate two new rows: one where you add this vector to the vector of means, the other where you subtract it from the vector of means. Of course you do this twice, once for the earlier period data, once for the later. This is not mathematics, it’s secretarial!

  193. EW
    Posted Apr 18, 2008 at 5:46 AM | Permalink

    192 (Erl)

    Erl, I use a beta version of Kyplot instead of Excel (from the times it was non-commercial). Here I can just tell it if the data are in columns or rows and if there’s a header present and then apply “Description statistics” which gives me neatly ordered means, maxs, mins, stErrors and stDeviations. No need to define anything. Reads Excel files. However, it has some problems with putting more curves in one graph – Excel does that better.

    http://www.pricelesswarehome.org/WoundedMoon/win32/kyplot.html

  194. Posted Apr 18, 2008 at 10:50 AM | Permalink

    Here is what I consider a ‘wishful thinking’ wiggle-line-up:
    http://sci.esa.int/science-e/www/object/index.cfm?fobjectid=42602

    From the article:
    Data from the VIRGO instrument on SOHO have been used to show that solar flares drive global oscillations in the Sun. This confirms a prediction made more than 30 years ago. The result has implications for our understanding of flares on the Sun and on solar-like stars.

    The black (on white) spikes on top are supposed to drive the oscillations [red spikes in the lower part]? I see some spikes that coincide, and some that do not, and the ones that do, seem to occur well [like weeks] before the x-ray spikes [flares]. Now, flares are often triggered by magnetic reconfigurations in the corona and chromosphere and there are sun-quakes just after the flare. A flare is a ‘contingent’ phenomenon, like an earthquake. So flares cannot drive anything weeks before they occur. As always, this could just be the press release that is garbage and has things backwards.

  195. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 18, 2008 at 4:54 PM | Permalink

    176 (me)

    The SOI might indicate El Nino conditions in July but the tropical troposphere is probably at a seasonal low in temperature at this time and the Southern Oceans are cooling. So, both geopotential height and SOI trend down and the correlation is positive.

    Correction: Re low correlation between SOI and geopotential height in the tropics in July. The strong seasonal peak in atmospheric temperature in the NH in July will overwhelm responses in the tropics. Any heating event that occurs in July will accentuate the trend but is unlikely to be discernable against the gross heating response (cloud cover reduction) already established. Although the SH tropics may be cooler the tropics in the NH should be very warm. One needs to see the figures for the mean rather than the anomaly.

  196. Posted Apr 18, 2008 at 5:20 PM | Permalink

    195 (Erl):

    One needs to see the figures for the mean rather than the anomaly.

    Aha! progress at last.

  197. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 18, 2008 at 5:24 PM | Permalink

    196 (Leif)
    Yep, that one was for you Leif. Unfortunately one needs to be a maths whiz to get them.

  198. Posted Apr 18, 2008 at 5:25 PM | Permalink

    GEOPHYSICAL RESEARCH LETTERS, VOL. 35, L08706, doi:10.1029/2008GL033394, 2008
    How does a weakened Atlantic thermohaline circulation lead to an intensification of the ENSO-south Asian summer monsoon interaction?
    Riyu Lu, Wei Chen, Buwen Dong
    Abstract
    This study investigates the change of the El Niño–Southern Oscillation (ENSO)-South Asian summer monsoon interaction in response to a weakened Atlantic thermohaline circulation (THC) by applying an additional freshwater flux into the North Atlantic. The simulated results indicate that the weakened THC leads to intensified ENSO-South Asian summer monsoon relationship and enhanced South Asian summer monsoon interannual variability. Furthermore, it is suggested that this intensification of the ENSO-monsoon relationship is likely due to the enhanced ENSO variability induced by the weakened THC. This study indicates that the low frequency fluctuation of Atlantic SSTs might have an influence on South Asian summer monsoon interannual variability and the ENSO-monsoon interaction, and suggests a nonlocal mechanism for the observed decadal-multidecadal modulation of ENSO-monsoon relationship.

    —–

    studying the models rather than the data….

  199. Posted Apr 18, 2008 at 5:29 PM | Permalink

    197 (Erl): math guru at work:
    anomaly = data – average, therefore:
    data = average + anomaly
    both items on the right-hand side of the ‘=’ sign are known, hence a simple addition will yield the ‘data’. Lesson in addition: 2+2=4 :-)

  200. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 18, 2008 at 6:46 PM | Permalink

    198 (Leif)

    studying the models rather than the data….

    Exactly. ‘Teleconnections’ and magic stuff.

    Re 199 and your suggested maths. It all looks very sound but try this for size:

    From: John Christy
    Sent: Tuesday, April 15, 2008 6:35 AM
    To: Allan MacRae
    Subject: Re: Actual LT temperatures – Tropics

    Allan:

    http://vortex.nsstc.uah.edu/data/msu/t2lt/tltdayacz7998_5.2

    To get the absolute values, you would need to average the zonal values for 20S-20N (cosine weight by latitude).

    Example: Day 1

    1 365 7669 LT 267813 270008 265617
    2399223971240032415924522249332523625382254512553325640257752593826115263112
    6504
    2668726869270402720327371275282765127752278272785727872278782788427900279042
    7903
    2790027913279242793327936279182788127825277432764227521273822718226924266742
    6410
    2625026073258392564425444252742515424990248332466224473243382425524212241832
    4158
    241412414224143

    From: http://vortex.nsstc.uah.edu/data/msu/docs/readme.msu :

    Reading tXdayacz79YY_5.Z

    do jd = 1,366
    read (10,100) jday,jd781,jd782,acha,mgl,msh,mnh !for both files
    read (10,101) (ndata(ilat),ilat=1,67) !for tXdayacz files
    end do
    100 format(3i5,a5,3i7)
    101 format(16i5)

    jday = julian day 1 to 366
    jd781 = day since 1 Jan 1978 used as the first day of the mean cycle
    jd782 = day since 1 Jan 1978 used as the last day of the mean cycle
    mgl, msh, mnh should be multiplied by 0.001
    ndata should be multiplied by 0.01

    These 67 numbers are the latitude values from 82.5 S to 82.5 N, i.e. 67 values. (In the above example, 23992 = 239.92K for 82.5S). The 34th value is the Equator (i.e. third line starts with this:

    279002791327924

    The value for 2.5S would be 279.00, for the equator 279.13, for 2.5N
    279.24 etc.

    John C.

    So, math guru, go to it.

  201. Posted Apr 18, 2008 at 7:04 PM | Permalink

    200 (Erl): Somebody trying to dazzle you. Surely there must exist accessible data sets of the average monthly temperatures for each hemisphere. this is just 2×12 = 24 numbers. In the unlikely case that no such data exists, I’ll make it.

  202. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 18, 2008 at 9:41 PM | Permalink

    199 (Leif)

    Here is an easier and possibly more informative approach to temperatures in the tropical troposphere. It has the advantage that we are reading at 500mb so we know exactly where we are, about half way up the atmosphere and above most of the cloud.

    What can I see?

    I have marked the NH summers with a rectangle and identified the heating episodes with ovals. A nice pattern emerges which relates to the parts of the globe that are heating strongly in the summer seasons. These seem to relate to known cloud deficient areas. I showed where these are in #20. They are also the areas that have residual warm water in the map of sea surface temperature anomalies for April 2008 beneath the hovmoller diagram.

    There is a nice slow progression towards solar minimum as the brown spots diminish in intensity from top to bottom. We see that the Indian Ocean is just as strong a theatre for warming as the Pacific. The blue oval marking the heating area in the region of Australia shows some cooling in 1996 and much more cooling in 2008. The unmarked blue area in the mid Pacific is growing in significance from top to bottom. I think that this can be linked with growing cloud cover in an area of the tropics that is connected with the Coral Sea. This is the cloud that, when it gets close enough can bring rain to Eastern Australia. If you look closely you can see other tiny areas of cooling temperatures emerging right round the globe in the last eight months.

    Generally, this looks like a steady progression driven by patterns of land mass distribution and rotation around the sun on a tilted axis. The cloud cover variations are slow and systematic as if driven by an external agency. I see patterns rather than chaos. I see little evidence of ‘internal oscillations’. It’s more like organic change.

  203. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 18, 2008 at 9:50 PM | Permalink

    201 (Leif)
    It exists for the NH and SH seperately and I showed that in #20 but so far as I know there is no data for average temperatures in the tropical zone. Just anomalies which I also showed in #20.

    Anyway, the devil is in the detail.

    But that’s a fine offer you make.

  204. Dennis Wingo
    Posted Apr 18, 2008 at 10:22 PM | Permalink

    Leif

    Here is an interesting paper about Holocene climate change and solar influence (at least partially)

    http://www.ldeo.columbia.edu/%7Epeter/Resources/CultureClimate/deMenocal.2001.pdf

  205. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 19, 2008 at 5:31 AM | Permalink

    156, 179 (Chris)

    The troposphere, tropopause and stratosphere clearly have different annual temperature signatures.
    On an annual basis, whereas the stratosphere is predominantly responding to solar irradiance, with temperature peaking in January, with a minimum around July; the tropopause is essentially flat; and the troposphere responds in the main to northern hemisphere summer temperatures, with peaks of temperature in July, and minima near December.

    Of interest to this thread is the uppermost stratospheric temperatures – those which have the least earthly, and most solar influence. The graph is not symmetrical – there is a broad peak in January, a sharp drop from maximum to minimum, a sharp trough in July, and after a similarly sharp rise, a shoulder in the September to December period. Why?

    Over the span of these data, are there any specific (solar) events which are apparent in the record?

    Chris, this is a nice little exercise in forensics.

    I agree that the variation in temperature in the upper stratosphere (1.4% over the year at 36 Km) is plainly related to the Earths orbit around the sun and the 90 Watts per square metre extra irradiance in January when the Earth is closest to the sun. The variation in the lower troposphere is driven by the heating of the Northern Hemisphere land masses in NH summer. At the top of the troposphere we have an interaction zone where a double maximum appears at 17Km in April and October.

    I would argue that the signature of solar variation lies in the temperature change in any one month, comparing one year to the others. The blue line shows the variation seen in the warmest month. That is January at 21 KM (just above or within the tropical troposphere at 15-25 km). It is June below 14 Km. It is plain that between 14 Km and 21 Km (and very possibly reaching even further at both ends) we have an interaction zone where variations in irradiance compete with variations in long wave radiation from the Earth to determine the temperature of the atmosphere.

    Variations in irradiance from year to year cause temperature changes in the troposphere (in the month where a maximum is reached) of up to almost 0.2% . This is about double that expected from the proportional change in irradiance alone (commonly calculated as 0.1% over the solar cycle) and enough to cause strong changes in cloud cover.

    Just 0.2% increase in temperature in the middle troposphere in July results in a 3% drop in global cloud cover at that time and the actual drop in the NH cloud cover must be much greater. After all, the SH is in winter at this time, and cloud cover increases there as it falls in the NH. The drop in cloud cover in the NH is enough to drive average temperatures in the NH troposphere up by 5K in July over the figure reached in the SH in February. This occurs even though irradiance is at an annual minimum in mid year. Changes in cloud cover therefore provide a highly amplified response in the NH summer. When changes like this occur in SH summer the response will be much greater because of the extra 90 Watts of irradiance available in January. However, the critical difference is that that energy gets to be absorbed by the oceans rather than dissipated into the atmosphere as occurs in the NH. The knock on effect in the NH is immediate atmospheric warming. In the SH the knock on effect is ocean warming. One hemisphere is shedding heat and the other absorbing it.

    I believe that here we are looking at the mechanism by which the sun drives El Nino heating episodes. When these occur in SH summer the oceans act as strong absorbers of energy. This tends to raise winter temperatures in the northern hemisphere. That describes the pattern of temperature change that has been witnessed in the recent past. It is Europe and the Pacific coast of North America that have lost their frosty winters.

    It is a complete disconnect of observation and thought process to suggest that the heating that has occurred in just one hemisphere can be caused by changes in gas composition that are uniform across the globe. That is hysterical nonsense.

  206. cba
    Posted Apr 19, 2008 at 6:25 AM | Permalink

    Erl,

    that thought is quite interesting as well.

    Beware though of potential causality problems such as “Just 0.2% increase in temperature in the middle troposphere in July results in a 3% drop in global cloud cover at that time …” because that states an increase in T causes a decrease in clouds (which would cause a decrease in albedo which would then cause an increase in heat. It’s obvious that the two are linked, along with other factors but the who causes the other is not so obvious and it doesn’t seem to me that they both cause each other. If heat regulates clouds, it would seem there would be a gargantuan runaway effect. If clouds regulate heat, it would seem that T would be maintained in a fairly tight fashion over a fairly broad set of conditions.

  207. Posted Apr 19, 2008 at 6:26 AM | Permalink

    2004 (Dennis): Yes, but the references to solar influences are a decade or more old and those were largely based on the assumed [at the time] large variations in TSI [Hoyt&Schatten, early Lean]that we now know are not correct.

  208. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 19, 2008 at 7:20 AM | Permalink

    206 (cba)

    If heat regulates clouds, it would seem there would be a gargantuan runaway effect. If clouds regulate heat, it would seem that T would be maintained in a fairly tight fashion over a fairly broad set of conditions.

    It seems to me that the ultimate regulator is the temperature of the oceans. As a result of ocean warming there is the increase in evaporation, increased wind velocity from the energy in the system including that derived from release of the latent heat of condensation driving uplift, increased thunderstorm activity in the tropics, increased cyclonic action in the tropics all pushing water vapour into the atmosphere and rise of the ITCZ humidifying the upper atmosphere. All these things impose a limit on the opening of the atmospheric window.

    As a result, and because the oceans take a while to cool down, the natural reaction to a strong El Nino is a prolonged La Nina like we had 1999-2000. That reaction occurs against the background of continuing strong increase in irradiance in the upswing of the solar cycle. There is a lot that can be learned from a study of the pattern of events in the past.

    When we have a slow and extended evolution towards solar minimum, like we have at present, La Nina is inevitable. If there is a swift transition from one solar cycle to the next La Nina has no chance to develop.

    Apart from that, NH summer offers some months of release from the warming process as the major oceans are not in a position to be absorbing energy.

    Are these considerations part of global climate models or is there no differentiation of the hemispheres at all and the whole thing is reduced to mathematical equations on the basis that the Earth is assumed to be homogeneous? Is ENSO treated as if it were simply a temporary aberration within the long term trend? Or, as I suggest, is it ENSO that is seen to be creating the trend?

    What happens in the tropics drives the system. Surely the current experience of extended winter conditions in North America and the risk to the Canadian wheat crop and the mid west Corn Belt is not going un-noticed.

  209. Posted Apr 19, 2008 at 7:39 AM | Permalink

    206 (Erl):

    That reaction occurs against the background of continuing strong increase in irradiance in the upswing of the solar cycle.

    Erl, there is no strong increase in irradiance with the solar cycle. The increase is 0.1% or less [for the coming smaller cycle]. Any larger change in short-wave (Xray, EUV, FUV) radiation is absorbed in the ionosphere and higher stratosphere and does not contribute to heating the oceans.

  210. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 19, 2008 at 8:02 AM | Permalink

    209 (Leif)

    Erl, there is no strong increase in irradiance with the solar cycle. The increase is 0.1% or less [for the coming smaller cycle]. Any larger change in short-wave (Xray, EUV, FUV) radiation is absorbed in the ionosphere and higher stratosphere and does not contribute to heating the oceans.

    Was #205 to no avail? Whatever the agency, irradiance plainly heats the upper troposphere. Clouds and aerosols absorb energy from a wide spectrum. Plain UV increases more than irradiance in general. How do you account for the 0.5% increase in the temperature of the atmosphere from year to year at 31 Km elevation with only a 0.1% increase in irradiance to play with over the entire solar cycle?

    Quite plainly the energy of energetic short wave radiation is not completely absorbed in the ionosphere and upper stratosphere. Either that, or there is particulate matter capable of absorbing energy from other spectra right down into the troposphere. Importantly, there is a variation in this heating occurrence and it is unequivocally timed with irradiance pulses.

    When you get to cloud level the cloud itself will absorb energy. Never seen a high cumulus cloud evaporate before your eyes?

    Neither observation or logic supports your contention.

  211. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 19, 2008 at 8:05 AM | Permalink

    210 (Leif)

    does not contribute to heating the oceans.

    No, I never said it did. That is a secondary effect due to the reduction in cloud cover.

  212. Posted Apr 19, 2008 at 8:19 AM | Permalink

    211 (Erl): from 208:

    It seems to me that the ultimate regulator is the temperature of the oceans. As a result of ocean warming there is the increase in evaporation, [lots of more words...]

  213. Posted Apr 19, 2008 at 8:26 AM | Permalink

    211 (Erl):

    Quite plainly the energy of energetic short wave radiation is not completely absorbed in the ionosphere and upper stratosphere

    We have been over this before. It is. Now you have a couple of ‘weasel’ words that makes the statement difficult to discuss. 1st: ‘the energy of … radiation’ is perhaps not the radiation itself. 2nd: ‘not completely’ could mean that of 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 photons one gets through, so your statement is correct no matter how little gets through. The ‘quite plainly’ is gratuitous.

  214. Posted Apr 19, 2008 at 8:35 AM | Permalink

    210 (Erl):

    How do you account for the 0.5% increase in the temperature of the atmosphere from year to year at 31 Km elevation with only a 0.1% increase in irradiance to play with over the entire solar cycle?

    Sigh. The 0.5% increase at 31 km is due to the fact that the UV and shorter are absorbed up there and therefore do not make it further down. Please.

  215. Posted Apr 19, 2008 at 9:04 AM | Permalink

    213 (Erl): I know that you consider Conventional wisdom to be ‘heads in the sand’ but you cannot just ignore solid science. In the very respected textbook ‘Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics’ by Seinfeld and Pandis it says [after a thorough explanation of why] on page 125: atmospheric O2 completely removes all radiation below 242nm from reaching the Earth’s surface. End of story. Period. O3 is the dominant absorber in the range 240-320nm range. They give a table of the number of photons getting to the surface from which one can see the flux for various wavelength bans:
    < 300:     0
    300-310:     0.22 x 10^14 photons/cm2/s
    310-320:     2.23 x 10^14 photons/cm2/s
    320-330:     5.60 x 10^14 photons/cm2/s
    330-340:     7.94 x 10^14 photons/cm2/s

    The removal of photons from the incoming beam takes place above 20 km [their Figure 4.11]

  216. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 19, 2008 at 9:07 AM | Permalink

    214 (Leif)
    Double maxima are produced at 14 Km and for this to happen the atmospheric heating from a fluctuating solar origin must be present at that elevation, and also, to a diminishing and unknown extent below this elevation. There is no wall. We have a gradual merging and transition. The zone of merging will move up and down according to the strength of the competing influences, irradiation on the one hand and OLR on the other. This is below the level of the tropical tropopauese and in a zone of considerable humidity.

    Sighs are to no avail. :-)

  217. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 19, 2008 at 9:11 AM | Permalink

    216 (me)
    Sorry, double max at 17 km.

  218. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 19, 2008 at 10:05 AM | Permalink

    215 (Leif)
    I’m sure the guys who write the books are church going people who teach at the best universities and vote republican. BUT the satellite data showing temperatures in the atmosphere over the last 12 years does not support what they say. That data is summarised in #205.

  219. ejmohr
    Posted Apr 19, 2008 at 10:33 AM | Permalink

    207 (Leif):

    The paper Dennis posted a link to has an interesting C14 graph. To my eye, it seems C14 shows much greater variability prior to the onset of the Holocene. It makes me wonder if the sun underwent some sort of phase change at that time. Anyway, I was wondering if you had any comments on C14 production rates and the putative link to solar activity. If this has been covered anywhere in the massive Svalgaard solar thread(s) just let me know where.

  220. Posted Apr 19, 2008 at 10:33 AM | Permalink

    218 (Erl):

    I’m sure the guys who write the books are church going people who teach at the best universities and vote republican. BUT the satellite data showing temperatures in the atmosphere over the last 12 years does not support what they say.

    Your statement does you a disservice. To put it in the simplest terms: the stratosphere is heated from above and the troposphere is heated from below.

    This is below the level of the tropical tropopauese and in a zone of considerable humidity.

    The coldest regions of the atmosphere are less that 200K (-73C) just above the tropical tropopause. There, the H20 Saturation Mixing Ratio [maximum water content] is at it’s very lowest level: 10,000 times lower that at the surface. ‘humidity’ is another one of the ‘weasel’ words that can be used ambiguously. Is it very humid when the water content is 10,000 times lower than in the rain forest?

  221. Posted Apr 19, 2008 at 11:11 AM | Permalink

    219 (ejmohr):

    To my eye, it seems C14 shows much greater variability prior to the onset of the Holocene. It makes me wonder if the sun underwent some sort of phase change at that time.

    From the caption to Figure 1: “variations in solar irradiance spanning the entire Holocene [as partially represented by (D)the production-corrected atmospheric 14C record (32, 33, 36)] do not match the paleoclimate records.”

    There are two things that control the production of C14 [assuming that the cosmic ray flux from the Galaxy and beyond is constant], namely 1st: the Earth’s magnetic field [production rate is inversely proportional to the square-root of the Earth's magnetic dipole moment], and 2nd: the modulation of the flux by solar activity. As we do not know solar activity prior to the onset of the Holocene, I’ll assume that graph D was only corrected for the geomagnetic field change. If an attempt was made to correct for some assumed solar activity [I don't have the energy to go and scour references 32, 33, 36, and I don't remember what they did] then, of course, the Sun is out of the equation. So, we’ll assume that solar influence has not been taken out. In that case, one may argue that the ‘residual’ C14 curve reflects, at least some, solar activity. There is a hint of a 2300-2500 year cycle that is unexplained. Opinions go both ways: there is a climate swing with a 2400 yr period that influences C14, or there is a 2400 yr solar variation that influences C14 and the climate. Nobody knows.

    Anyway, I was wondering if you had any comments on C14 production rates and the putative link to solar activity. If this has been covered anywhere in the massive Svalgaard solar thread(s) just let me know where.

    This has been discussed [don't remember where], but unfortunately the signal-to-noise ratio in the [massive - as you say] thread is low, because we spend an inordinate amount of time discussing crank theories like planetary influences and pseudo-science like Erl’s stuff where we are told to throw out established science because it is ‘heads in the sand stuff’. I apologize a bit for this and should exercise a much heavier hand than I do, but I also see it as a duty to provide measured [to my ability - hard at times] responses to most comments as simple human decency towards fellow seekers [misguided or not].
    A good stating point is good ole trusted Wikipedia here

  222. Posted Apr 19, 2008 at 11:47 AM | Permalink

    Leif(220) concludes unequivocally that ‘the stratosphere is heated from above and the troposphere is heated from below’. This dogmatic conclusion accomplishes two things: (1) It minimizes potential impact of solar variation on surface temperature. Boom, all sun arguments are shot dead. (2) It thereby confines all further discussion of forcing variables to what heats the troposphere from below. One guess as to what’s lurking down there in the troposphere causing all this climate forcing. Yep, it’s the CO2 (carbon trader) boogeyman by process of scientific elimination. It would be helpful to specifically focus recent peer reviewed studies, pro and con, that test this conclusion on tropo-stratus boundries.

  223. Posted Apr 19, 2008 at 12:35 PM | Permalink

    222 (Joe): There are many that would say that LOW clouds are regulated by cosmic rays and thereby affect the heating of the lower troposphere, so they might disagree with your notion that “all sun arguments are shot dead”.

    It would be helpful to specifically focus recent peer reviewed studies

    If I said the Earth was round would you also insist on a list of peer-reviewed papers showing that? What heats the atmosphere has been known for a century and peer-review is a fairly recent phenomenon, so it is hard to find such peer-reviewed papers concerned with that. But there are many other resources that explains this, e.g. this one. In case you are not disposed to go and look, I’ll quote a few passages:
    “The atmosphere is largely heated from below by the earth’s surface”
    “Absorption of solar radiation by ozone, especially in the upper part of the stratosphere provides a heat source (from above) for the stratosphere”
    “The mesosphere is heated from below, so that it is characterised by a general decrease of temperature with height, as for the troposphere.”

  224. Posted Apr 19, 2008 at 2:08 PM | Permalink

    223 (me): “The stratosphere is heated from above”. I meant, of course, that its additional heating comes from above; all of the atmosphere is basically heated from below because the atmosphere is largely transparent to the bulk of solar radiation. I forgot to mention the Thermosphere [it goes like this: troposphere, stratosphere, mesosphere, thermosphere, and exosphere] which too has additional heating from above. Because the density of the atmosphere decreases by a factor of a thousand for each 50 km additional altitude, the actual amount of heat in the upper layers is minuscule.

  225. Raven
    Posted Apr 19, 2008 at 2:40 PM | Permalink

    FWIW – When I look at the temperature gradients in the atmosphere the only conclusion I can draw is something heats the stratosphere from above and something heats the troposphere from below. The boundary between the stratosphere and the troposphere is defined to be the point where the domininant component of heating changes. This conclusion remains true no matter what mechanisms cause the heating.

  226. ejmohr
    Posted Apr 19, 2008 at 5:10 PM | Permalink

    221 (Leif):

    Thanks for the speedy response. It wasn’t so much the link, or lack thereof, between climate and C14 that I was looking at but rather it was the apparent huge increase in variance in the pre Holocene portion of the graph. If the C14 data is correct this would imply greater variance in the Earth’s magnetic field, or in solar activity, or both.

    Hoyt and Schatten have a graph that shows the Ca II index, and therefore activity, for solar like stars has varied much more than we have observed with our local star. Of course, if TSI does not vary much, then a larger variance in a tiny number would mean that we don’t have much to worry about:-)

  227. Posted Apr 19, 2008 at 6:23 PM | Permalink

    226 (ejmohr): The generally accepted list of possible causes of fluctuations in C14 looks like this:
    A: Variations in global production
     A1: Variation in cosmic ray flux (CRF)
      A1a: Cosmic ray burst from supernovae and such
      A1b: Interstellar modulation of CRF
     A2: Modulation of CRF by solar activity
     A3: Modulation of CRF by changes in Earth’s magnetic field
     A4: Production by antimatter meteorite collisions with Earth (if any)
     A5: Production by nuclear weapon testing and nuclear technology in general
    B: Variations in rate of exchange between geochemical reservoirs and CO2 reservoir inventory [good candidates for ice age conditions]
     B1: Control of CO2 solubility and dissolution and residence time by temperature variations
     B2: Effect of sea-level variations on ocean circulation and capacity
     B3: Assimilation of CO2 by biosphere [on land]
     B4: Assimilation of CO2 by marine biosphere
    C: Variations in total CO2 in atmosphere, biosphere, and hydrosphere
     C1: Changes in input rate of CO2 by lithospheric outgassing, e.g. vulcanism
     C2: Combustion of fossil and/or recent fuel from industrial and domestic activity
     C3: Changes in long-term strorage in the sediment reservoir

    So you can see that there are many factors, and we just don’t know which ones at this point.

  228. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 19, 2008 at 7:05 PM | Permalink

    Leif,

    pseudo-science like Erl’s stuff where we are told to throw out established science because it is ‘heads in the sand stuff’. I apologize a bit for this and should exercise a much heavier hand than I do, but I also see it as a duty to provide measured [to my ability - hard at times] responses to most comments as simple human decency towards fellow seekers [misguided or not].

    Just a few more tiresome words to challenge ‘established science’. Where have I heard that phrase? Is it the same as, ‘The science is settled’.

    I live on the coast, on the margin of one of the largest continental deserts in the world. If I drive for an hour or two to the north and west I see a rapid transition from a 400mm rainfall zone, with forests, to a 150mm rainfall zone where the trees are better described as large shrubs, widely separated with much bare ground between them. This vegetation tolerates and thrives in soil derived from Archaean rocks, the soil loaded with salt that emerges in the shallow valleys skeletonising the trees that habit the watercourses. The landscape has long since been eroded to a peneplain and from the air the inland watercourses are really just a string of salt lakes. In many places clearing of the uplands for agriculture has blighted the valleys. When you clear this country, strangely, the clouds disappear. If you visit the rabbit proof fence that was supposed to keep the rabbits out of Western Australia, marking the edge of the farmed zone, you can see clouds on the inland side of the fence and none on the other.

    When Australia was settled the popular notion was that ‘rain followed the plough’.

    We are currently witnessing the greatest greening of this environment that has been seen by living persons. I quote:

    Breaking Weather News – Rain records tumbling across WA
    Tom Saunders, 18 April 2008
    Rain is set to persist over southwest WA through the weekend, continuing what is now a record wet month for much of the region.

    Perth’s rain for the month has reached 137mm, over three times their average and wettest April in 82 years. The city is now only 12mm off breaking its all time April record of 149mm set in 1926.

    Further inland Brookton with 99mm is only 2mm off recording its wettest April in 100 years of records. Northam has already hit that mark with 91mm making it the towns wettest April in over a century of records.

    The unusually wet weather is due partly to very warm sea surface temperatures off the west coast of the state. The warm seas are supplying increased moisture to passing cold fronts, leading to thicker cloud and heavier rain.

    With another two weeks left in the month many more parts of WA are likely to finish with April records.

    Leif, you have lived in Singapore and know what high humidity feels like. We have that humidity. We have air rolling in from the tropics becoming cloudy as soon as it hits the coast. The place is getting a drenching. Normally, the rain begins in June-July. Not one tropical cycle has hit the north-west coast this year. They fade to rain bearing depressions and drift south bringing rain to the desert as they come. The tropical oceans are just too cool and there is not enough energy in the system to support cyclone/tornado activity.

    If I ignored the evidence before my very eyes, I too could be like you, secure in my beliefs, feeling my concepts unchallengeable, confident that I know what is going on.

    I am going ‘walkabout’ for a few days to see what is happening out there. In this part of the world we always have one eye on the sky to try and work out what is going on.

    I know I can safely do this because you will be keeping an eye on the sunspots. You can have a ‘breather’, no doubt very welcome, from my tiresome stuff.

  229. Posted Apr 19, 2008 at 7:48 PM | Permalink

    228 (Erl):
    Do these two quotes refer to the same ocean?

    The unusually wet weather is due partly to very warm sea surface temperatures off the west coast of the state.

    The tropical oceans are just too cool and there is not enough energy in the system to support cyclone/tornado activity

    And I do indeed know humidity. I live now in Houston, TX, where the summer is characterized by the three 100s: 100 degrees, 100% humidity, and 100% misery.

    Is the wet weather hurting the Wine business?

  230. Richard Sharpe
    Posted Apr 19, 2008 at 8:01 PM | Permalink

    228 (Erl):

    I have much more respect for what Leif is saying, but I have one comment. When I was last in Adelaide (a couple of years ago now) someone there who is from the country said that all the old timers had noticed that the weather was starting to repeat what had happened a long time ago.

    It could, of course, be old age and the legendary ability of humans to find patterns and categories everywhere.

  231. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 19, 2008 at 10:18 PM | Permalink

    229 (Leif) Different oceans. The journalist is not looking at the bigger picture that conditions activity across the tropics. He mistakenly connects the rain with frontal activity. It’s classic thunderstorm activity and is connected with a trough bringing tropical air south down the west coast. It’s a typical summer pattern for this part of the world but usually it just brings hot dry air. Now it’s hot wet air. The north and the East coast are also awash.

    The wet weather certainly caused at rush to get the fruit in at the end.

    230 (Richard) The pattern of El Nino drought that we have seen since 1976 also occurred at the end of the Nineteenth century. It’s my impression that we will now see a repeat of the very favourable years of the 1950s and 60s. Paradoxically these were years of strong and short solar cycles. The mechanism that I am suggesting does not relate to the strength of the solar cycle. It depends upon.
    1. Short term advances in irradiance to warm the atmosphere directly and to increase heat return to the atmosphere by land masses. This is a normal event every summer.
    2. The temperature of the oceans as it affects the rate of evaporation and therefore the absolute level of moisture in the atmosphere.
    3. Heat uptake by the oceans that depends upon the hemisphere that is oriented towards the sun when the heating event occurs. Timing becomes important.

    There is nothing really very radical in these ideas. I don’t think that the mechanism requires that FUV reaches the troposphere. All that is required is that the atmosphere below the tropospause experiences temperature fluctuation from year to year. That quite plainly happens. These fluctuations are proportionately much greater than the fluctuations in irradiance.

    If the fluctuations occur in SH summer the Earth system warms. If in NH summer alone there is a net loss of energy by the oceans and we cool.

  232. Posted Apr 20, 2008 at 1:27 AM | Permalink

    re

    quote
    B3: Assimilation of CO2 by biosphere [on land]
    B4: Assimilation of CO2 by marine biosphere
    unquote

    C14 is sequestered differently by C3 and C4/CAM plants. Phyto populations change when starved from C3 to C4. The blue deserts are growing.

    Volcanoes which spread a lot of chromium and zinc leachate should show up in the C isotope record.

    JF

  233. Posted Apr 20, 2008 at 11:03 AM | Permalink

    Peter Foukal’s upcoming talk at AGU in May:

    SP53B-06
    Did Solar UV Flux Variation Contribute to 20th Century Global Warming?
    Foukal, P (pvfoukal@comcast.net), Heliophysics, Inc.,, 192 Willow Rd, Nahant, MA 01908, United States
    Chulsky, G (chulsky@gmail.com), Heliophysics, Inc.,, 192 Willow Rd, Nahant, MA 01908, United States
    Weisenstein, D (dweisens@aer.com), AER,Inc.,, 131 Hartwell Ave, Lexington, MA 02421, United States

    Solar UV irradiance below 240 nm (here Fuv) varies mainly in proportion to area changes of bright photospheric faculae, so its time behavior differs from that of longer UV wavelengths, and of the total solar irradiance (TSI), both of which are also determined by dark sunspots. We showed previously (ref.1) that the time series of Fuv and TSI differed significantly during the 20th century, and that Fuv variation accounted for less than 20 percent of the variance in global temperature, Tg, over 1915-1999. The time series of facular areas used in our reconstructions has now been found to agree ( r = 0.97) with results from an independent reduction of the same Mount Wilson Observatory spectroheliograms (ref.2)included in our study. Although the 170 to 240 nm Fuv range (responsible for molecular oxygen dissociation) correlates relatively weakly with Tg, the time behavior of the UV irradiance between 240 and 320 nm (responsible for ozone dissociation) closely resembles that of TSI and thus of Tg. Therefore, our results might be reconciled with possible Tg driving by solar UV irradiance variation (e.g. ref. 3) if the time behavior of ozone concentration were determined more by its dissociation rate, rather than by that of oxygen. However, our tests with the AER 2- D stratospheric chemistry model (ref.4) indicate that the direct impact on ozone is almost entirely due to wavelengths below 240 nm. Thus, the low correlation we find between Fuv and Tg seems to argue against solar UV driving of 20th century global warming. This conclusion could be sensitive to possible feedbacks between ozone and stratospheric temperature, circulation or water vapor, which are not included in our modeling. It appears, however, to be consistent with the recent assessment (ref.5) that, while solar UV flux variation affects important tropospheric circulations, a consistent effect on Tg remains to be identified. 1 P. Foukal, GRL 29,2089,doi:10:1029/2002GL015474 2.L. Bertello et al., abstract at AGU Joint Assembly(2008) 3.D.Shindell et al., Science, 294, 2149 (2001) 4.D. Weisenstein et al.JGR 109.D18310,doi:10:1029/2004 5.J. Haigh et al., J.Climate, 18,3672 (2005)

  234. Posted Apr 20, 2008 at 1:26 PM | Permalink

    Erl, for you:

    The Response of Tropospheric Circulation to Perturbations in Lower-Stratospheric Temperature.
    Authors: Haigh, Joanna D.; Blackburn, Michael; Day, Rebecca
    Journal of Climate, vol. 18, Issue 17, pp.3672-3685, 2005
    Abstract
    A multiple regression analysis of the NCEP-NCAR reanalysis dataset shows a response to increased solar activity of a weakening and poleward shift of the subtropical jets. This signal is separable from other influences, such as those of El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) and the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO), and is very similar to that seen in previous studies using global circulation models (GCMs) of the effects of an increase in solar spectral irradiance. The response to increased stratospheric (volcanic) aerosol is found in the data to be a weakening and equatorward shift of the jets.The GCM studies of the solar influence also showed an impact on tropospheric mean meridional circulation with a weakening and expansion of the tropical Hadley cells and a poleward shift of the Ferrel cells. To understand the mechanisms whereby the changes in solar irradiance affect tropospheric winds and circulation, experiments have been carried out with a simplified global circulation model. The results show that generic heating of the lower stratosphere tends to weaken the subtropical jets and the tropospheric mean meridional circulations. The positions of the jets, and the extent of the Hadley cells, respond to the distribution of the stratospheric heating, with low-latitude heating forcing them to move poleward, and high-latitude or latitudinally uniform heating forcing them equatorward. The patterns of response are similar to those that are found to be a result of the solar or volcanic influences, respectively, in the data analysis.This demonstrates that perturbations to the heat balance of the lower stratosphere, such as those brought about by solar or volcanic activity, can produce changes in the mean tropospheric circulation, even without any direct forcing below the tropopause.

  235. Chris Knight
    Posted Apr 20, 2008 at 2:05 PM | Permalink

    223 (Leif)That the Mesosphere is heated from below seems to be an oversimplification – it is cooled via endothermic photochemical reactions, unlike the troposphere, which is heated convectively from the surface, cooling by adiabatic expansion, purely thermodynamic physical processes.

    The Mesosphere has a radically (pun intended) different chemistry from the stratosphere, with endothermic photolysis reactions occurring on the various molecular species which escape the stratosphere, either by virtue of their thermal energy (I suppose this is what is meant above), diurnal mixing processes or diffusion down from the ionosphere, where nascent isotopes, such as C14 etc., are generated.

    The Thermosphere is heated by a different process (Ionisation, interaction with the solar wind and resistive effects of electric currents flowing in the earth’s magnetic field – high temperature, but low heat content) from that in the Stratosphere, which depends on the concentration of Oxygen and Nitrogen, in the following series of Photo/thermochemical reactions with the far uv radiation from the sun:
    1. O2 + UV light -> 2 O
    2. O + O2 + M -> O3 + M (exothermic – for the ozone to become stable it must lose heat or decompose)

    M is another molecule, commonly Nitrogen or Oxygen which is required to conserve the energy released in the second reaction, which is the reaction which heats the stratosphere.

    There is a reverse reaction happening too:

    3. O3 + UV, visible light -> O + O2

    and ozone readily gives up its third oxygen atom to free radical species:

    4. O3 + X -> XO + O2 ( where X may be O, NO, OH, Br, Cl etc. or as an oxidising agent with molecular moieties such as CO, CH4,)

    Together, 3. and 4. are thought to cause the Ozone hole growth phenomena during the early polar summer (with constant irradiation through a thicker segment of the polar stratosphere).

    The reaction 2. is the limiting factor in the mesosphere/stratosphere since it involves three atoms or molecules, which is statistically less likely the more rarefied the atmosphere becomes with increasing height. The nearer the ionosphere, the more likely free radicals are to be found, as products of the ionisation processes occurring above, and reaction 1.

    The stratopause represents the zone where reaction 2, heating the upper stratosphere most strongly ceases to be sustainable due to resources, i.e. availability of M, above which excess UV-C breaks down most molecular integrity – thus the temperature drops as we rise through the mesosphere where ozone breaks down rapidly due to reactions 3. and 4.

    So the outer atmosphere has an iono-electromagnetic heating, the mesosphere has a photochemical cooling, the stratosphere has a photochemical/thermodynamic heating, and the troposphere has a thermodynamic cooling, with the surface having a direct photothermic heating coupled with convective/radiative cooling associated with effects from the sun. Somewhere in between, there is space for a greenhouse effect, too.

  236. Posted Apr 20, 2008 at 2:30 PM | Permalink

    235 (Chris): Thanks for elaborating on this. I thought it be too big a mouthful in the context of the issue we were focusing on, but a separate post [like yours] makes a nice addition without cluttering up the issue. The bottom line is that the thermal budget of the atmosphere is very complex and should not be described as simply the result of unspecified ‘heating events’.

  237. Chris Knight
    Posted Apr 20, 2008 at 3:59 PM | Permalink

    Here are three graphs which show the relatonship between the solar radiant energy, and the atmospheric temperaturesat different levels.

  238. Chris Knight
    Posted Apr 20, 2008 at 4:00 PM | Permalink

    DOH!

  239. Chris Knight
    Posted Apr 20, 2008 at 4:09 PM | Permalink

    Graph 1:

    Graph 2:

    Graph 3:

  240. cba
    Posted Apr 20, 2008 at 5:37 PM | Permalink

    chris – still no joy in mudville

  241. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 20, 2008 at 6:11 PM | Permalink

    237 (Chris)
    What I do to bring in a figure:
    Save graph from Excel as a PDF. Trim to size in Adobe Professional. Save as JPG. Import to Photobucket. (You get a free account on the net). Copy the HTML code and paste to Climate Audit.It’s tedious but it works.

    When we get an ‘unspecified eating event'; lets give it the name ‘El Nino’ a little bit of heating of the lower atmosphere might reduce the water vapour content ever so slightly and allow more radiation through to the surface. Heating from the land masses then returns the energy to the atmosphere resulting in a further drop in cloud cover.

    The process is limited by the increasing temperature of the ocean which pushes more water vapour into the atmosphere.

    This is what happens in summer time. Nothing mysterious about it at all.

    There are fluctuations in the temperature of the atmosphere at all levels between sea level and 41000 metres. These fluctuations occur from one year to the next. Increases in temperature align with changes in sea surface temperature that are global in nature, and they also align nicely with quite tiny changes in the suns irradiance.

    I am talking dynamics, not statics.

  242. Joe Solters
    Posted Apr 20, 2008 at 8:45 PM | Permalink

    Much thanks for responses, especially 235(Chris) on how different atmospheric levels are heated and cooled.

  243. Chris Knight
    Posted Apr 21, 2008 at 12:14 AM | Permalink

    A nights sleep and try again:
    http://www.netweather.tv/forum/galleryupload/1208035814/tn_gallery_7302_418_67200.jpg

    the stratosphere temperatures, down to the top of the troposphere

  244. Chris Knight
    Posted Apr 21, 2008 at 12:24 AM | Permalink

    Aha, a thumbnail, I’ll now try for the big picture :)

    the stratosphere temperatures, down to the top of the troposphere

    the troposphere temperatures

    What the stratospheric temperatures might look like if there was no absorption from the upper atmosphere

  245. stargazer
    Posted Apr 21, 2008 at 4:56 AM | Permalink

    this might be useful

    http://climatesci.org/2008/04/18/average-day-by-day-variations-of-the-global-and-hemispheric-average-lower-tropospheric-temperatures/

  246. Posted Apr 21, 2008 at 7:23 AM | Permalink

    244 (Chris): A thought experiment: what would the temperature curve with altitude look like if there were no Oxygen and CO2 [i.e. the atmosphere was just an inert gas]? that would seem to be the ‘base line’. Them one can begin to add tiny amounts of Oxygen and watch what happens as the Oxygen contents slowly rises. There was a time in the Earth’s history where the was no [ot only little] Oxygen.

  247. Posted Apr 21, 2008 at 8:44 AM | Permalink

    Cross-post from ‘Stockwell…’.
    Erl, this is up your alley:

    http://www.weatherquestions.com/Roy-Spencer-on-global-warming.htm#research-update

    April 19, 2008 RESEARCH UPDATES:

    (1) – Our latest article, “Potential Biases in Feedback Diagnosis from Observational Data: A Simple Model Description”, has been accepted for publication in Journal of Climate. It uses a simple climate model to show how daily noise in the Earth’s cloud cover amount can cause feedback estimates from observational data to be biased in the positive direction, making the climate system look more sensitive to manmade greenhouse gas emissions than it really is.

    (2) – I have asked the editor of the Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society to consider publishing a paper I have written entitled, “Evidence for Internal Radiative Forcing of Climate Change”. I believe that this paper addresses the single most important issue neglected by the U.N.’s Intergovernmental Panel On Climate Change (IPCC): Natural climate variability generated within the climate system in the form of INTERNAL radiative forcing.
    This paper is a generalization of our paper that has just been accepted for publication in Journal of Climate, and describes how mixing up of cause and effect when observing natural climate variability can lead to the mistaken conclusion that the climate system is more sensitive to greenhouse gas emissions than it really is. It also shows that a small change in cloud cover hypothesized to occur with the El Nino/La Nina and Pacific Decadal Oscillation modes of natural climate variability can explain most of the major features of global average temperature change in the last century, including 70% of the warming trend. While this does not prove that global warming is mostly natural, it provides a quantitative mechanism for the (minority) view that global warming is mostly a manifestation of natural internal climate variability. (This paper is sure to be controversial, and it will be interesting to see how difficult it will be to get published.)

  248. Posted Apr 21, 2008 at 9:13 AM | Permalink

    246 (me): My own take on this: With a transparent atmosphere, solar radiation is absorbed by the surface of the Earth and heats that. The air just next to the surface then heats up by conduction [if you doubt this is efficient, try to put your hand on a hot stove]. The heated air rises [as hot air is wont to do]. As it rises, the pressure in the air parcel drops [as there is less air above it] and the parcel expands. The expansion cools the parcel [the inverse of the heating from compression], hence the temperature will fall with altitude all the way up. This is what happens to atmospheres heated from below.

  249. Andrew
    Posted Apr 21, 2008 at 9:27 AM | Permalink

    247 (Leif): Please don’t marginalize what Spencer is doing by associating it with what Erl is trying to show. These are totally unrelated ideas. Spencer has shown that previous attempts to assess feedbacks in the climate system have been flawed becuase they didn’t take into acount the possibility that changes in cloud cover that occured either spontaneously or associated with a change in the ocean/atmosphere circulation could cuase the temperature changes. Erl is trying to show that changes in cloud cover act as positive feedbacks on heating of the atmosphere by the sun, which is completely different.

  250. Posted Apr 21, 2008 at 9:53 AM | Permalink

    249 (Andrew):

    Please don’t marginalize what Spencer is doing by associating it with what Erl is trying to show.

    Andy, I think you misunderstood my intent. It was just the opposite, namely to draw Erl’s attention to Spencer’s work that internal changes [rather than external wiggles] might be important.

    Erl is trying to show that changes in cloud cover act as positive feedbacks on heating of the atmosphere by the sun,

    I’m not sure what Erl is trying to show. My impression is that it is the opposite of what your interpretation is, namely that external ‘heating events’ [TSI-wiggles] drives
    everything, but I could be wrong…

  251. Chris Knight
    Posted Apr 21, 2008 at 10:15 AM | Permalink

    246 (Leif)Good questions.

    I am sure that we could model for single gases, or simple mixtures.

    But there are a lot of questions to ask first. What do we assume the surface temperature to be? That affects which species would be gaseous, and thus the volume/density of the atmosphere.

    What was the likely composition, proportions? NH3, N2, H2S, H20, CO,, CH4, CH3OH, oh, and who could imagine a world without C2H5OH! :)

    “There was a time in the Earth’s history where the was no [ot only little] Oxygen.” Also the moon would have been much closer, and the tidal temperature forcing would be much greater than the estimated 1-5 terawatts that exist today. At a few earth radii, the lunar tides would have been massive. No wonder all the continents huddled together. :)

    One likelihood is that there would be an ionosphere, even if the sun was dimmer than today, but with the atmospheric tides, would there have been a stratosphere/mesosphere, or would it all have been troposphere?

    ? can anyone see the images I tried to post earlier?

  252. Andrew
    Posted Apr 21, 2008 at 10:26 AM | Permalink

    250 (Leif): Sorry, misunderstood you. But for future reference, I don’t like bing called “Andy”. :)

    BTW, I’m not really clear what Erl is getting at either…

  253. Posted Apr 21, 2008 at 10:27 AM | Permalink

    251 (Chris): assume N2 and nothing else.
    Surface temperature could be 273K.
    What I’m trying to do, is simply to establish the base line case. This is important to have in mind before discussing all the complications.

    Images: no joy.
    If you don’t want to fiddle with the process [it's not that hard], email the images to me and I’ll put them up.

  254. Posted Apr 21, 2008 at 10:30 AM | Permalink

    252 (Andrew): OK, Andrew. :-)

  255. cba
    Posted Apr 21, 2008 at 10:42 AM | Permalink

    248 (Leif):

    In your ghg – less atmosphere Conduction may be important. I would suggest though that in the real world that very short range radiative is actually far more effective at warming the near ground air than conduction. Ground is a good insulator and air is a much better insulator without convection. Avg. T (288k) generates about 390w/m^2. Heat flow out of the ground to the surface from below is substantially less than that.

    Also, I’m not sure you can have a ghg-less atmosphere in the past. There’s always been co2 and methane around, even in the earliest times from what I understand.

    Basically, your description is typical of an atmospheric textbook where the lapse rate can be defined as the consequence of an ideal gas law. Personally, I prefer the use of something like the standard atmosphere defining the real lapse rate and then perturbing the standard with new conditions that must exist along with continued energy balance from a new perturbed lapse rate. Note I did find a work in progress by someone on the web which seemed quite reasonable looking through it. It’s rather the stock piece and is recent in authorship. It’s by a climate guy (University faculty type – probably a bit of a warmer type bias-wise). It might be worth your reading if you want to beef up in that area. I’ll look for the link if you’re interested.

  256. Posted Apr 21, 2008 at 11:02 AM | Permalink

    255 (Chris): Whether or not conduction or radiation is the most efficient for the initial heating is not material. And neither is the past. The whole discussion goes back to my statement “in simplest terms, the stratosphere is heated from above, the troposphere is heated from below”. And, yes, I’m thinking in textbook terms to get to the basic concept before attacking the complications. And a basic concept is: ‘why does the temperature decrease with height?’ Once you understand that, then you can worry about what causes deviations from this basic picture.

  257. jae
    Posted Apr 21, 2008 at 11:31 AM | Permalink

    Leif, 248:

    246 (me): My own take on this: With a transparent atmosphere, solar radiation is absorbed by the surface of the Earth and heats that. The air just next to the surface then heats up by conduction [if you doubt this is efficient, try to put your hand on a hot stove]. The heated air rises [as hot air is wont to do]. As it rises, the pressure in the air parcel drops [as there is less air above it] and the parcel expands. The expansion cools the parcel [the inverse of the heating from compression], hence the temperature will fall with altitude all the way up. This is what happens to atmospheres heated from below.

    You didn’t mention radiation here. You don’t agree with all the AGW radiative (IR) heating mechanisms?

  258. Posted Apr 21, 2008 at 12:25 PM | Permalink

    257 (jae): you are over-interpreting my comment. I was establishing the basics first. Then we begin to add all the extra, ‘real’ effects, Ozone, CO2, H2O, etc. Without a doubt, CO2 acts as a greenhouse gas. It is silly to argue otherwise. The debate is about how much, and whether it is good or bad, and what to do about it [if anything].

  259. cba
    Posted Apr 21, 2008 at 12:32 PM | Permalink

    256 (Leif):

    As stated in such texts, the basis of the lapse rate can be shown with the ideal gas law. The conservation of energy by layer is what determines the temperature distribution. It’s the classical radiative transfer set up – usually using the plane approximation done by Eddington. What makes the perturbation approach interesting is it takes into account the current radiative and convective input to establish the baseline.

    As one goes further out the atmosphere, there is less power absorption and less re-emission back down from above and space doesn’t radiate back diddly squatt being at 3 K.

    Part of the problem one has with this stuff is assumptions that usually have either thin or thick optical thicknesses for the layers. Depending on wavelength – it’s both. Another problem is well into the stratosphere or just above it, you can be outside the realm of LTE which poses additional problems.

    I don’t know if there was enough left in Unthreaded #33 to make sense or not but I attempted to cover some of this there over the weekend. Most of that effort was eaten by the web page input as it was evidently way too long.

  260. jae
    Posted Apr 21, 2008 at 12:46 PM | Permalink

    Leif, 258:

    Without a doubt, CO2 acts as a greenhouse gas. It is silly to argue otherwise. The debate is about how much, and whether it is good or bad, and what to do about it [if anything].

    Agreed.

  261. cba
    Posted Apr 21, 2008 at 1:40 PM | Permalink

    260 (Leif):

    Actually in the cracks and crevices and in the interpretation of a ghg IR absorber / emitter versus an abstract concept of a thermal flow blockage, there is a bit of debatable territory.

  262. Posted Apr 21, 2008 at 1:43 PM | Permalink

    251 (Chris): Here are your three plots:

  263. Posted Apr 21, 2008 at 1:46 PM | Permalink

    261 (cba): might explain why the debate goes on…

  264. Posted Apr 21, 2008 at 1:48 PM | Permalink

    262 (me): I forgot to post your captions to the Figures:
    The strato.JPG is intuitive – TSI at the top and temperature plots for decreasing heights going downwards. Nothing dramatic over that temperature range. Of note is the flat temperature of the tropopause – neither seasonally warmed to any extent from below, nor cooled from above. I’d love to see the diurnal variations though – at all heights.
    The tropo.JPG is upside down – TSI at the bottom, and the heights decrease going upwards. Excel – ’nuff said.

  265. Posted Apr 21, 2008 at 1:50 PM | Permalink

    262 (me and Chris): Trying again:
    The strato.JPG is intuitive – TSI at the top and temperature plots for decreasing heights going downwards. Nothing dramatic over that temperature range. Of note is the flat temperature of the tropopause – neither seasonally warmed to any extent from below, nor cooled from above. I’d love to see the diurnal variations though – at all heights.
    The tropo.JPG is upside down – TSI at the bottom, and the heights decrease going upwards. Excel – ’nuff said.
    Strat temps mean.JPG shows the plot for high in the stratosphere in blue, but with the January peak extrapolated as if there was no attenuation due to the elevation of the mean stratospheric height during the southern summer/perihelion side of the earth’s orbit, the enhanced cooling of the stratosphere in the southern summer due to mixing with the southern mesosphere/and/or mesopheric irradiation conditions existing within the supra Antarctic stratosphere during the southern summer. Whatever it is due to, I am guessing it is involved with the southern ozone hole phenomenon. I was hoping someone would elaborate on this.

  266. jae
    Posted Apr 21, 2008 at 1:53 PM | Permalink

    262, Leif: From your first graph, it looks like what goes on in the stratosphere could potentially have a great eddect on tropospheric temperatures, no?

  267. jae
    Posted Apr 21, 2008 at 1:54 PM | Permalink

    Nuts, make eddect,”effect.”

  268. Pat Keating
    Posted Apr 21, 2008 at 2:39 PM | Permalink

    262 265 Leif
    Two points (assuming the charts are for the SH, which is implied [what latitude?]):

    1. According tho the third chart, the lower troposphere seems to be warmer in the southern winter than in the summer. This doesn’t make sense to me. Whats up? Am I missing something?

    2. The stratospheric cooling in the SH summer may be due to cold air from the upper troposphere being injected into the stratosphere when high summer thunderstorms break through the tropopause.

  269. cba
    Posted Apr 21, 2008 at 2:59 PM | Permalink

    266 (jae):

    just remember it’s starting to be a pretty good vacuum up there at around room temperature (+/- 70C). It’s not going to be radiating a whole bunch but there is opportunity for chemistry changes to affect things a bit. Also, the ionosphere begins as low as 50km.

    At the tropopause, it’s making sense that little is going on there as it’s at the top of range where convection can have an effect and it’s below the range of all the really non thermodynamic nasties from above. What’s more, the radiation absorbed there tends to come from relatively nearby at wavelengths that have short path lengths and are reradiated from above or below, and not from the surface or the sun. There is little mixing above/below this point and it’s an inflection point for T as a f(z).

    268 (Pat):
    I believe those are world averages and there’s more land mass in the NH. All those stratospheric numbers appear to change with orbital variations.

  270. Leif Svalgaard
    Posted Apr 21, 2008 at 3:10 PM | Permalink

    268m269 (Pat,cba): Chris, straighten the folks out on this.

  271. Pat Keating
    Posted Apr 21, 2008 at 3:49 PM | Permalink

    269 cba
    World averages? Ahhh……thanks for your help.
    I guess (a) I missed out on too much earlier discussion, (b) I was fooled by this:

    the enhanced cooling of the stratosphere in the southern summer due to mixing with the southern mesosphere/and/or mesopheric irradiation conditions existing within the supra Antarctic stratosphere

  272. prs
    Posted Apr 21, 2008 at 7:17 PM | Permalink

    Below is the last paragraph in section 1.4.3 of Chapter 1 of AR4. In reading this, isn’t the IPCC saying they have no idea what the effect of solar irradiance is on the climate?

    “The TAR states that the changes in solar irradiance are not
    the major cause of the temperature changes in the second half
    of the 20th century unless those changes can induce unknown
    large feedbacks in the climate system. The effects of galactic
    cosmic rays on the atmosphere (via cloud nucleation) and those
    due to shifts in the solar spectrum towards the ultraviolet (UV)
    range, at times of high solar activity, are largely unknown. The
    latter may produce changes in tropospheric circulation via
    changes in static stability resulting from the interaction of the
    increased UV radiation with stratospheric ozone. More research
    to investigate the effects of solar behaviour on climate is needed
    before the magnitude of solar effects on climate can be stated
    with certainty.”

  273. prs
    Posted Apr 21, 2008 at 7:51 PM | Permalink

    I meant to add this to the previous post. This is from Chapter 2 of the AR4. IPCC says, Forcing is less than reported in TAR, but we still have a low scientific understanding, at best. I don’t know much about solar irradiance, but when I read the numbers they quote and the level of understanding they admit to having…it seems meaningless to me.

    “The direct RF due to increase in solar irradiance is reduced
    from the TAR. The best estimate is +0.12 W m–2 (90%
    confi dence interval: +0.06 to +0.30 W m–2). While there have
    been advances in the direct solar irradiance variation, there
    remain large uncertainties. The level of scientific understanding
    is elevated to low relative to TAR for solar forcing due to direct
    irradiance change, while declared as very low for cosmic ray
    infl uences (Section 2.9, Table 2.11).”

  274. Posted Apr 21, 2008 at 8:12 PM | Permalink

    273 (prs): there may be another reason why the solar influence is played down, namely that solar activity in the beginning of the 20th Century was low, and therefore could have been part of the reason that temperatures were lower then, and that we can’t have, can we? But I basically agree that the solar influence is low [and of low 'certainty'].

  275. kim
    Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 12:59 AM | Permalink

    273 (prs) What AR4 does is called hedging even if truth dignifies and makes more deserved a more auspicious name.
    ====================================================================

  276. Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 3:37 AM | Permalink

    Here is the current butterfly diagram (NASA+updated by me):

    Note the two new cycle [24] regions in the northern hemisphere. There are cycle 23 spots popping up. One today, in fact.

  277. Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 3:53 AM | Permalink

    Leif,
    Clearly the cycles overlap. Can you construct a cycle length histogram based on the actual length of the butterfly? How anomalous is the length of the now ending cycle?

  278. Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 4:25 AM | Permalink

    277 (Hans): David Hathaway at NASA is maintaining the long-term butterfly. Here is his plot: http://solarscience.msfc.nasa.gov/images/bfly.gif
    As you can see, all cycles overlap. From this diagram [or better: from the data underlying it {also on NASA site}] one can get what you want. But what is the point? The length [or worse: the smoothed length] of a cycle is not important, the size of the cycle is. All the correlations using the ‘length’ are based on a nebulous concept that has no real physical content. The beginning and end of a cycle are buried in the previous and following cycles as the cycle peters out to nothing ‘at both ends’.

  279. Chris Knight
    Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 4:33 AM | Permalink

    253 (Leif)

    Atmosphere of N2 and nothing else at a mean temperature of 273K.

    There would still be an ionosphere, there would still be C14 produced.

    The upper levels corresponding to todays mesosphere, would have a limited chemistry, Perhaps N2, N, C, CN.

    I would guess that these regions would be as cold as the Mesopause is today.

    Since the atmosphere is totally transparent to UV, visible light, and IR, incoming radiation would be unaffected until it reached some ground surface.

    The ground would heat fiercely throughout the day at 1366W/m^2 The ground would lose heat in 2 ways, by black body radiation, losing IR radiation back to space, and by heating the immediate layer of nitrogen above its surface, which would set off convective processes, adiabatic expansion and a gradual cooling with height in the atmosphere. How high I can’t guess, maybe all the way to the top – there are no obvious reasons why a temperature inversion should occur.

    Diurnally, the atmospheric surface temperature would drop immediately the surface started to cool. I would guess a diurnal range of at least +/- 100K from day to night. 373K – 173K

    Over an annual cycle, January would be about 5K warmer than July.

    If there were water, the situation would be totally different, but you wouldn’t have a N2 only atmosphere then.

    270 (Leif), I think cba did that for Pat. Thanks to all

  280. Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 6:13 AM | Permalink

    Leif wrote:

    All the correlations using the ‘length’ are based on a nebulous concept that has no real physical content.

    Rasmus Benestad did write a paper ;-)
    http://www.agu.org/pubs/crossref/2005…/2005GL023621.shtml

    R. E. Benestad, A review of the solar cycle length estimates, GEOPHYSICAL RESEARCH LETTERS, VOL. 32, L15714, doi:10.1029/2005GL023621, 2005

    If cycle length is not the proper metric, is there an “integrated solar activity” value (eg W/cycle) available per solar cycle? Do solar scientists agree which metric is the “best”?

  281. cba
    Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 6:34 AM | Permalink

    279 (Chris):

    Sounds fairly interesting but if it’s n2 only, where does the C and CN occur?

    Note that 1366 is only happening at noon where the sun is at zenith. There’s still the geometry going on. The lit side average will be 1/2 that and the albedo will only be in the 0.05 to 0.15 range for an average. Land would probably be somewhere around 0.12 but ocean would be more like 0.04 for high angle albedo assuming an ocean with no evaporation.

    Without the IR absorbing / emitting molecules the atmosphere would be unable to rid itself of any energy absorbed other than by contact with the surface. Initially, it would convect upward where it cooled off due to pv=nrt and conduction would also play a part. It would seem though that eventually, the conduction would merely bring the atmosphere to a mean T higher up as we’re dealing with power and the T depends on energy and there’s no where else to go with the heat flow. That’s not to say there wouldn’t be convection or T variations but that they’d be more short range than the whole atmosphere.

    Neither atmosphere nor surface would have much heat transfer ability so the swings would be wild at the surface as you stated.

    However, upper atmosphere area would be heated by nonradiative processes. we’d still have ohmic heating, cosmic rays, x-rays and the like. In this case, there is no way out via radiative for that tiny bit of energy other than down to the surface (and yet higher via conduction). Since heat transfer is somewhat like an ohm’s law situation (volts=T, ht flow = i, resistance = resistance to ht flow), things could get interesting depending upon the high ‘resistances’ for conduction. Without radiative abilities, I’d expect it to get rather warm up there compared to what we see now.

  282. Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 6:57 AM | Permalink

    281 (cba): yes there will still be a thermosphere, but that is ok for my purposes.

  283. Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 7:22 AM | Permalink

    280 (Hans): W/cycle? This is equally nebulous. During the time the cycles overlap there will be W belonging to one cycle and W belonging to the other other cycle. How would the atmosphere know which W belongs to which cycle. What matters is the total W. Possibly you don’t mean Watts, but Joules? If you integrate the Watts from [combined] solar minimum to the next, you’ll get the total energy in Joules for that cycle. But then what you correlate with should also be integrated over a cycle. Maybe the heat storage of the oceans is so large and the time constant so long [being debated] that several cycles are being averaged over, and then what does the individual cycles buy you? If you did mean W/cycle, then by first integrating W over a cycle [giving you Joules] and then dividing by the time [length] of the cycle to get W [which is J/s], the length falls out.

  284. Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 7:54 AM | Permalink

    280 (Hans): Benestad’s paper was clearly written before cycle 23 drew to its end. Cycle 23 is very long, but not anomalous compared to some of the earlier cycles before 1900, so there is no need to postulate a ‘pronounced change in the sun’ around 1900. Once more: the length as such [eyeballed or computed with 'rigorous' mathematics and fancy multi-this-or-that regressions and filters] is not a physical quantity and says little about a cycle, apart from a weak tendency for weak cycles to be longer, although one of the strongest cycles [#3] was 13.7 years long.

  285. cba
    Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 7:57 AM | Permalink

    282 (Leif):

    I still haven’t seen what you’re driving towards. Adding one ghg at a time is very misleading because of overlaps. co2 only should yield around 25% of today’s total. co2 removed from current atmosphere should show only 9-12% effect.

  286. Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 8:09 AM | Permalink

    285 (cba): I was really responding to #222 and , I think, his misinterpretation of Chris’s response [see #242], and just reminding [the ones that need it] the folks about the basics of atmospheric heating. As a result we now have a lot of good posts that we can draw upon in the future, as needed.

  287. Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 8:12 AM | Permalink

    re 284
    You’re sharp… ;-)

  288. Phil.
    Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 8:23 AM | Permalink

    Re #281

    Sounds fairly interesting but if it’s n2 only, where does the C and CN occur?

    Because C14 would still be formed from N14 in the atmosphere by bombardment with neutrons.

    See for example:

  289. Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 8:24 AM | Permalink

    285 (cba): changing one aspect at a time may be misleading if one forgets that it is the combined system that counts. But it is a time-honored way in experimental physics to find out how things work. It can also be used to good effect in geo-atmos-solar[etc] physics. An example is my [old, but still good] demonstration of what drives geomagnetic activity: Geomagnetic Activity: Dependence on Solar Wind Parameters.pdf(Coronal Hole Workshop, 1977).

  290. Phil.
    Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 8:36 AM | Permalink

    Sorry Link tool didn’t work!
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Radiocarbon

  291. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 8:45 AM | Permalink

    Re N only atmospheres
    279 (Chris) 280 (cba)

    And Leif

    ‘why does the temperature decrease with height?’

    And Leifs statement:

    With a transparent atmosphere, solar radiation is absorbed by the surface of the Earth and heats that. The air just next to the surface then heats up by conduction [if you doubt this is efficient, try to put your hand on a hot stove]. The heated air rises [as hot air is wont to do]. As it rises, the pressure in the air parcel drops [as there is less air above it] and the parcel expands. The expansion cools the parcel [the inverse of the heating from compression], hence the temperature will fall with altitude all the way up. This is what happens to atmospheres heated from below.

    I agree with Leif’s description. It could be elaborated a bit with a description of the cooling power of evaporation at the surface and the role of the release of latent heat of condensation as an accelerator for convection but that would simply be embellishment. Perhaps Leif is talking of a water free Earth.

    However, I want to chip in with two more substantive comments. The first relates to the very cold temperature of the tropopause in the tropics. Whereas in mid latitudes tropopause temperatures may fall no lower than -55°C (warming above that point due to the processes that cause stratospheric heating, namely the action of UV light on oxygen) temperature can reach -70°C at the greater height of the tropical tropopause despite the greater intensity of solar radiation (and UV) at low latitudes. This lower temperature of the tropical tropopause must be due to the relative strength of convection in the tropics versus the process of UV absorption. Rapid vertical movement enables air to be cooled as it expands, and to do so at such a rate that its temperature is much less affected by radiation from above.

    The second comment relates to a point of logic in relation to the tropopause and the possibility of radiative heating of the upper troposphere from the stratosphere or from greenhouse gas content in the immediate vicinity. The point is this. The troposphere is always cooler at higher elevations. (Let’s not nit pick about temperature inversions close to the ground). Heating of molecules anywhere in the troposphere, from whatever cause, must generate convection. But convection ceases at the tropopause. The inference is that the tropopause is the point where density is sufficiently low to enable the free transfer of heat via radiative processes. Only when radiation is capable of movement without materially affecting the temperature of the surrounding air can a ‘tropopause’ be established.

    I see a tropopause also in a Nitrogen only atmosphere, so long as there is enough of it.
    The qualification so ‘long as there is enough of it’ is an important consideration affecting atmospheric behaviour. Fortunately Earth has enough atmosphere to protect its water vapour. It might also be remarked that Earth has enough water vapour to protect its atmosphere. Without water vapour daytime surface temperatures would be very much higher as would be the temperature of the atmosphere itself. This might accelerate loss of atmospheric molecules to space.

  292. jae
    Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 9:06 AM | Permalink

    Lief, 278. That butterfly centering on about 1970 appears to be a different species than the reest of them :). It has deformed wings and they are at a different angle than all the others. Also the one centered on about 1960 has much more yellow (high percentage spots) than all the others. Do you know if there is any significance to these differences?

  293. Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 9:22 AM | Permalink

    292 (jae): all the butterflies belong to the same species, it is just that there is considerable [natural] variation from cycle to cycle. The ‘1960’ cycle [#19] was the largest ever observed, so that explains all the yellow. The ‘1970’ cycle [#20] was somewhat of an ‘outlier’. It was a smallish cycle between the two biggest ones observed, the solar wind varied less, cosmic rays varied less during the declining phase, but I think they all are within the natural variation one can expect when you look back over the ~40 cycles we have observed. The solar cycle doesn’t run like clockwork.

  294. cba
    Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 10:10 AM | Permalink

    289 (Leif):

    I don’t disagree that one must split out components somehow to observe the effects of that component. In this case it would seem that the more accurate approach would be to subtract out a component from the existing whole and analyze the effects upon the rest rather than the additive approach of assuming a component is essentially orthogonal and its effect is unaffected by the presence or absence of other components. Getting into this stuff I was confronted by the radical variations in presumed co2 impact depending on the source. 26% is quite different than 9% and you’d think the resolution & accuracy of measurement would have reduced that difference by quite an amount. It wasn’t until observing the details that I saw it was apples and oranges and both extreme values were actually about right for what they were. However, one number is the actual contributed effect to the atmosphere while the other is not. However that other number would be the effect on a CO2 only (only ghg component) atmosphere – but that doesn’t exist here.

  295. Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 10:38 AM | Permalink

    294 (cba): Each time you add a component, you, of course, recalculate the effect that has on all the other ones you have added and recalculates a new total effect. Where some people get in trouble is when they resort to unspecified ‘amplifications’, and feedbacks.

  296. Chris Knight
    Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 11:07 AM | Permalink

    291 (Erl)

    I think what creates our tropopause is the presence or lack of of water vapour below a critical amount. As temperatures decrease with height, water vapour must selectively become more scarce than the major gases, and it’s greenhouse effect must disappear with it.

    I cannot see a mechanism in a N2 atmosphere for a tropospheric layer.

    Next N2 world question – with a starting value of 273K, and black body radiation from the surface, and from the atmosphere, how fast does N2 world cool, year on year?

  297. Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 11:14 AM | Permalink

    292 (Erl):

    temperature can reach -70°C at the greater height of the tropical tropopause despite the greater intensity of solar radiation (and UV) at low latitudes.

    Not ‘despite’, but ‘because of’. We get stronger convection as you say:

    This lower temperature of the tropical tropopause must be due to the relative strength of convection in the tropics versus the process of UV absorption. Rapid vertical movement enables air to be cooled as it expands, and to do so at such a rate that its temperature is much less affected by radiation from above.

    But you have to leave out the UV stuff as we have discussed so many times. The UV does not get down into the troposphere. Is ‘completely removed’ as we saw in #215. You are, of course, correct that “its temperature is much less affected by radiation from above” as it is not affected at all.

  298. Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 11:18 AM | Permalink

    296 (Chris):

    Next N2 world question – with a starting value of 273K, and black body radiation from the surface, and from the atmosphere, how fast does N2 world cool, year on year?

    You mean, after we turn off the Sun? :-)
    What do you mean?

  299. Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 11:28 AM | Permalink

    296 (Chris,Erl): I think that in a N2 world there would be no tropopause because there would be no stratosphere. The importance of playing with these toy worlds is precisely that the basic processes can be elucidated and misconceptions cleared up.

  300. cba
    Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 11:35 AM | Permalink

    296 (Chris):

    atmosphere is about a ton /m^2. The upper incoming likely heating the ionosphere (non radiatively) is likely to be faster than the heat transfer needed to dissipate it – so it continues to heat not cool until conductive/convective means reach equilibrium or until there is enough transmutations and formation of radiatively active molecules or until it heats up to where the N2 glows.

    The rest or lower majority is just going to feed its energy to the surface which will rapidly head to around 255 K average. The radiative efficiency of the surface will be such that the limiting factor again is the heat flow to the surface from below and from the air. My guess is after a few months at most it will appear to average 255K (nominally) and that only a tiny excursion above that will exist due to the small amount of nonradiative heat flow in as compared to the rather massive (100s of W/m^2 going out).

    Of course the incoming from the sun will keep up the variances but theres always some of that.

  301. cba
    Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 11:43 AM | Permalink

    299 (Leif):

    that raises the question of what really is the tropopause? Is it the point where convection has totally ceased and no more atmospheric mixing occurs? A temperature inversion? (or other defining factors) Is it where O3 doesn’t go below and H2o doesn’t go above? (Except in rare circumstances like supercells) . Obviously, if it requires h2o and/or o3 – it can’t exist in the hypothetical example. If it’s mostly just the convection limit or temperature inversion, then perhaps it can.

    So what is a ‘tropopause’ as it could be applied (or not) to this n2 world?

  302. Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 11:55 AM | Permalink

    301 (cba): Our current atmosphere is well mixed all the way up to 100 km [combination of convection, turbulence, and eddy diffusion] so I would expect that to hold in an N2 world as well. And I would not expect a tropopause in an N2 world. In our current world, the formation of the stratosphere and the ensuing temperature inversion prevents convection, but does not prevent eddy diffusion, so we can have [and do have] mixing even with a tropopause.

  303. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 12:06 PM | Permalink

    Surely the existence of a tropopause is intimately connected to ozone formation in the stratosphere. ISn’t this what reverses the decreasing temperatures with altitude? Ozone formation captures UV radiation and, as I understand it, the energy is re-emitted by IR active molecules available in the stratosphere. Without this effect, the temperature would be monotomic.

  304. Phil.
    Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 12:35 PM | Permalink

    302 (Leif)

    The permanent gases in our atmosphere are well mixed, O3 (created in situ and v reactive) and water (condensation) are not.
    On Mars there’s no stratosphere because there’s no O2/O3:

  305. Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 12:54 PM | Permalink

    Thanks everybody for this discussion about atmospheric heating. I think that most agree so there should be no more outstanding issues. The few that disagree might study the various responses and links given.

  306. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 12:55 PM | Permalink

    Perhaps simply thinking of it as the troposphere having vertical turbulence and regualar convection, water vapor and aerosols, and in hydrostatic equilibrium. Whereas the stratosphere is warmed by UV as you move further up. A conduction/convection boundry, with weak forces of either buffering in between.

  307. cba
    Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 1:19 PM | Permalink

    While Mars might be the closest to earthlike, 95% co2 is a far cry from 100% N2. Such a high concentration of IR radiative molecules could prevent a build up of heat and a temperature inversion.

    That still doesn’t stop the fact that there is energy dissipation or absorption into the upper levels which isn’t radiative absorption. conduction/convection must bring this energy down to the surface to re-radiate. Hence in the upper reaches of the atmosphere there will be a temperature inversion caused by the absorption of energy from cosmic rays, x-rays, etc. After all, heat doesn’t flow from cold to hot. Whether there is something well defined or hardly detectable, I’m not sure of. Then again, this assumes the existence of a temperature inversion defining the tropopause. If the tropopause is defined by something other than a T inversion then….

    Hence my original questions from 301 of what is it that really defines a (generic) tropopause. If it’s just a T inversion – then I think N2 world would have one. If it’s truly dependent on O3 and /or H2O – then N2 world cannot have one.

  308. Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 1:26 PM | Permalink

    307 (cba): I see what you say. since there is an inversion at the thermosphere there would be a tropopause there, but ~100 km up, so not what we would normally call a ‘troposphere’.

  309. cba
    Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 1:51 PM | Permalink

    308 (Leif):

    It might be down at 50KM too – bottom of D layer of ionosphere now. It certainly would not be the same thing as we’re used to, but N2 world is a rather alien place, every bit as much as mars.

  310. Chris Knight
    Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 2:07 PM | Permalink

    298 (Leif)

    From what I have read, without greenhouse gases, the earth in this orbit would have a mean temperature of somewhat less than 273K, more like 255K, as cba kindly points out, and there would be an “N2pause” at below the low enough pressure required to sustain the thermospheric heating of the ionosphere. With all of the effective TSI reaching the surface, there would be some temperature gradient in the atmosphere, which would keep a mean diurnal temperature above that of the moon, due to the more rapid revolution of the earth, the back radiation from the lower N2sphere, and the thermal capacity of both the surface, and the N2 itself.

  311. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 2:10 PM | Permalink

    Pure nitrogen would lose you wind, water, variations in ground temperature, clouds, ozone and other things you’d need to get. And all the nitrogen would escape into space anyway, wouldn’t it?

    What is happening (how I understand it on a basic level of operation) that vertical mixing and the use of energy to raise air masses causes a temperature decrease that causes water vapor to condense and release heat further providing energy to raise the air. Once you hit a certain point, there’s nothing left energy-wise and little water vapor, which is around where the tropopause starts. At another higher level from the bottom, ozone is able to take over, which absorbs the UV and starts the air warming again. Or in other words atmospheric thermaldynamics reach equilibrium between tropo (convection) and strato (conduction). The heights vary between equator and polar due mostly to ground temperature. Also, another factor is the secondary circulation in the strato driven by convectily generated gravity waves from the tropo. Etc.

    So it’s a combination of factors you can’t decouple.

  312. cba
    Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 2:51 PM | Permalink

    310 (Chris):

    I think the 33 K rise (255K) is for an earth with 0.3 albedo at 1 A.U. (black body with 0.7 emissivity) as it is now. Most all of this is clouds – around 0.26 out of the 0.3x we have. Lunar albedo is more like 0.12 or 0.16 and the same for mars. Earth’s oceans are more like 0.04 and that’s 75%+ of the surface. The 0.3 is taken as a direct comparison with now so as to provide a reasonable reference for the GHGs. In reality without the atmosphere, there’d be no liquid h2o and we’d wind up around 0.12 albedo with a slightly higher T due to increased absorption of solar but this doesn’t offer us a direct comparison with GHGs and without GHGs.

    Ultimately, our N2 world expanded to a less alien environment (with GHGs) is going to be faced with the clear sky / cloudy sky complexity too and this is where the rubber meets the road.

  313. Chris Knight
    Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 2:52 PM | Permalink

    So with that interesting little aside nicely dealt with, back to solar, which we seem to have reached a consensus that the stratosphere is sensitive to TSI, and I now think I can post a graph, fingers crossed:

    I don’t see a high degree of correlation.
    Stratospheric temperatures seemed to peak in 2002, then drop to a low point at the present.
    There appears to be a disconnection between the peak of solar activity in 2000, and the rise in stratospheric temperature following 2 y after.

  314. Chris Knight
    Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 3:06 PM | Permalink

    311 (Sam) I don’t agree that we would lose the winds. The topology of the earth would set up strong updrafts and the rapid change of temperature at the terminator would lead to dawn and twilight winds, and the axial tilt would lead to seasonal polar winds, probably very intense storms, as Mars demonstrates.

  315. Chris Knight
    Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 3:36 PM | Permalink

    301-304,306-311. Tropopause dependence on water vapour or the presence of a stratosphere.
    I agree with Sam that water vapour is the key here.

    The experiment required here is simple, put a UV filter in front of the sun.

    Would that affect the height of clouds etc.?, or would the temperature just continue to drop as we go higher. would the tropopause, defined as the limit of the turbulent atmosphere (Tropos)- Greek for turning, still exist?

    Would we have an unheated, but stratified atmosphere above?

  316. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 4:38 PM | Permalink

    Chris:

    What kind of temperature gradients exist in an atmosphere that’s all nitrogen? Certainly while we might not lose the winds totally they would be radically different. Faster and more variable? Maybe. I’m still trying to imagine a planet that’s all nitrogen that would be able to keep the atmosphere.

    Without water vapor and IR et al moving heat down and up below, and the ozone reacting to UV above, I don’t think we’d have the ability to at all explain what that might be like. Seems somewhat unphysical. :)

  317. Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 5:34 PM | Permalink

    313 (Chris): the sunspot number is not really a good proxy for TSI. Use the real TSI instead and you’ll see a strong peak in 2002:

  318. jae
    Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 5:49 PM | Permalink

    Chris and others: the thermal capacity for all the N2 in the atmosphere may be a lot higher than you think it is. In a 1 m^2 column of atmosphere there are about 10,000 kg of air, or about 8,000 kg of N2 (as I recall). If you (could) raise the temperature of that column by an average of only 3 C, it would take 2.4 e7 joules. That’s a lot of energy to “loose” overnight.

  319. Chris Knight
    Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 5:57 PM | Permalink

    317 Leif

    Thanks, can you give a link to the data please, SORCE doesn’t go back that far, and does not look anything like the anomaly chart, unlike your TSI series. Interestingly, the October 29 2003 geomagnetic storm (prominent on Sorce) has a strong trough in the stratosphere anomaly on the same date. I wonder why? Do big CMEs block TSI? I shall look at some other dates tomorrow.

  320. cba
    Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 6:08 PM | Permalink

    318 (jae):

    that’s in the ballpark. It’s around 10 or 11 tons / m^2 (think I had a typo earlier). One must remember too that with an average power in of 341 W/m^2, a 1 w/m^2 extra absorption would put in 88,400 joules per day. Were this to continue for 270 days, then that would result in a 3 deg rise in your column temperature – assuming your numbers are correct for the number of joules needed to increase the T by 3 C. I’d guess about 0.5 to 1.0 cal. per deg C for N2 with around 3-4 joules / calorie. However, this is for N2 World which only has a nitrogen atmosphere at 1 atm pressure. For a difference of larger W/m^2 absorption that number of days drops dramatically.

  321. Chris Knight
    Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 6:13 PM | Permalink

    316 Sam

    On a warm still summer day, convection all around, and a cumulus passes in front of the sun, and a breeze picks up as a small pocket of denser cooler air follows in the the cloud’s shadow. After the cloud clear the sun, the breeze drops as the airflow resumes its convection upward. Imagine the temperature difference as the sun sets, and the colder higher pressure air follows the sunset along the line of the terminator between day and night on N2World.

    Imagine a mountain range with northerly slopes under full sun, and southerly slopes in shadow, and there would be tremendous turbulent winds with the temperature differences in the N2sphere, or a plain bordered by a mountain range. Cold dense air drawn onto the hot plain as the pressure drops due to sustained convection – a recipe for tornados.

    I would be interested to know why nitrogen would be lost from the atmosphere. AFAIK it is only Hydrogen (maybe helium too) that can escape from the atmosphere in any quantity.

  322. Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 6:24 PM | Permalink

    319 (Chris): Would you believe there is something useful at Palais Tammy? Like this:
    http://tamino.wordpress.com/climate-data-links/

    The ‘Halloween’ storm in Oct. 2003 was caused by a huge sunspot that caused a drop of 4.5 W in TSI.

    Here is a little teaser. Imagine you have a tiny spot on the Sun, the smallest you can see. Now leave that one in the sky but remove ALL the rest of the Sun, so only that tiny spot is shining. Now, here is the question: compare the total radiation we get from that tiny, tiny spot to that of the full Moon. Which is the brighter?

  323. Chris Knight
    Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 7:05 PM | Permalink

    319 (Leif):

    Won’t I get corrupted at Tammys? :) Thanks.

    Duh. That’s easy. We all know the moon is illuminated by the Sun. Remove the sun , and we couldn’t see the full moon ;)

    Stratospheric temperature troughs and Spaceweather archive:

    16/01/2001 bright CME, interplanetary shockwave
    8/8/2001 many sunspots
    20/12/2001 many large sunspots
    28/8/2002 week of auroras and geomagnetic activity
    2/10/02gusty solar wind, auroras
    29/10/03 geomagnetic storm, auroras, CME
    12/2/04auroras,
    12/11/05
    3/3/06
    16/8/06
    3/1/7 aurora watch, mild GMS
    19/6/7
    20/9/7 auroras
    26/1/8 nacreous clouds

  324. Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 7:17 PM | Permalink

    323 (Chris): You must have posed the sunspot/moon question poorly. The question is really: how much radiation do we get from that tiny spot and how much do we get from the full moon. which is brighter?

  325. Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 7:22 PM | Permalink

    324 (me): I must have posed…

  326. cba
    Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 7:37 PM | Permalink

    322 (Leif):

    let’s see, the dark spot is putting out just a little less W/m^2 than the rest but it represents only say a fraction of a % of the surface and hence of the total. Hence it is responsible for only a fraction of a % of the total. On the other hand, lunar albedo is 0.12, reflecting 12% of the incoming solar. Unfortunately, only about 8% is dispersed our way as the rest gets reflected right back at the sun. So we have 0.00015 x 0.08 = 1.23E-5 of the sun’s output hitting earth otherwise known as about 0.016 W/m^2 due to the moon. In this case the m^2 is per lunar surface reflecting and the Watts is the amount hitting the earth somewhere. Note there’s quite a bit of earth (13 x) per lunar real estate so dividing by 13 gives a rough w/m^2 result for earth.

    Now how big did you say that sunspot was (as a fraction of the visible disk)?

    Considering we get the lunar bit every full moon …

  327. Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 7:40 PM | Permalink

    326 (Chris): the smallest spots are 10 millionth of the disk…

  328. Andrew
    Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 7:43 PM | Permalink

    323 (Chris Knight): Actually, the moon is illuminated by light reflected off the Earth, which is why we use it to measure “Earthshine to guage the Earth’s reflectance (albedo). Fun fact, I think (unless I’m wrong).

  329. Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 7:46 PM | Permalink

    328 (Andrew): you are not even wrong… think again.

  330. cba
    Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 7:54 PM | Permalink

    328 (Andrew):

    you are not wrong and there evidently is an ongoing research project for that. However, earthshine doesn’t happen at a full moon because the moon is opposite the sun so none of earth is lit and visible to the moon.

    327 (Leif):

    you got me mixed with chris again. well your comparison is between 1 10 millionth (just under since it’s slightly cooler) of the solar output versus 1 millionth of the solar output (assuming I ran the numbers right)

  331. cba
    Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 7:59 PM | Permalink

    330 (me):
    I should correct that as the dark moon is earth lit while the bright part is sunlight. Andrew is right in that there is earth albedo measurements by looking at the dark area or unlit (by sun) area of the moon. This is best done near new moon and personally I don’t like the approach, and think that satellites offer better results with fewer adjustments.

  332. Andrew
    Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 7:59 PM | Permalink

    329 (Leif): Do’h. Just realized what was wrong (or not even wrong) with my statement. Thanks.

  333. Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 8:10 PM | Permalink

    330 (cba): communication is hard. The smallest sunspot is 10 x 1/1,000,000 of the disk, like 10% is 0.1 and not 0.001. The answer is that the tiniest sunspot alone is 2.5 times as bright as the full moon.

  334. jae
    Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 8:13 PM | Permalink

    that’s in the ballpark. It’s around 10 or 11 tons / m^2 (think I had a typo earlier). One must remember too that with an average power in of 341 W/m^2, a 1 w/m^2 extra absorption would put in 88,400 joules per day. Were this to continue for 270 days, then that would result in a 3 deg rise in your column temperature – assuming your numbers are correct for the number of joules needed to increase the T by 3 C. I’d guess about 0.5 to 1.0 cal. per deg C for N2 with around 3-4 joules / calorie. However, this is for N2 World which only has a nitrogen atmosphere at 1 atm pressure. For a difference of larger W/m^2 absorption that number of days drops dramatically.

    You lost me. But…If the N2 is heated by conduction at the surface, and it has no means to radiate energy to outer-space, then the temperature would continually increase and increase and would eventually fry the Planet. Maybe it would finally get hot enough to emit visible radiation and compete with the SUN. There is definitely something wrong with these analyses of a pure N2 atmosphere!

  335. Phil.
    Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 8:16 PM | Permalink

    Re #311

    Pure nitrogen would lose you wind, water, variations in ground temperature, clouds, ozone and other things you’d need to get. And all the nitrogen would escape into space anyway, wouldn’t it?

    N2 is too heavy to have an escape velocity.

    Re #321
    There is a flaw in your conjecture about the winds, there will be no mechanism to heat the atmosphere to the degree required, no radiation heat transfer and conduction won’t cut it.

  336. cba
    Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 8:26 PM | Permalink

    333 (Leif):

    I see – 10 x 1,000,000 = 10 millionths versus 1/10,000,000 is 1 ten millionth.

    That being the case my number should say 1x – they’re the same (ignoring less radiative power due to slightly lower T). Now the question is – where did my approach miss by 2.5x I was somewhat sloppy but I didn’t think that sloppy.

    I assumed albedo was really 0.08 for moon and a ratio of 13 between lunar illumination size and earth size. Now I ignored limb darkening for the moon.
    I don’t know, I’m exhausted – these 13 hour days get rough after a bout with a head cold. Playing on the computer is about it for me – that and checking on the lab students & instructor every few minutes. It was a nice blue sky at 5pm and nothing was visible by dark.

  337. Phil.
    Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 8:37 PM | Permalink

    Re #334

    If the N2 is heated by conduction at the surface, and it has no means to radiate energy to outer-space, then the temperature would continually increase and increase and would eventually fry the Planet. Maybe it would finally get hot enough to emit visible radiation and compete with the SUN. There is definitely something wrong with these analyses of a pure N2 atmosphere!

    You miss the fact that the surface would be emitting IR at close to its current rate, during the day there will be some conduction heating near the surface and some associated convection. At night however the surface would fairly rapidly radiatively cool and soon be cooler than the atmosphere above it and therefore cool it. So your scenario of perpetual heating will not occur.

  338. Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 8:50 PM | Permalink

    336 (cba): my calculation went like this: the full moon is 500,000 less bright than the sun. The magnitude of the sun is −26.73 and of the full moon −12.6 [this is cheating, of course]. One magnitude is (100)^0.2 = 2.512 times in brightness. Thus, the ratio between Sun and Moon is 449,000, call that half a million. 10 millionth = 100,000 times less, but a sunspot is cooler than the rest of the sun, so make that 200,000 times less. 500,000/200,000 = 2.5.

  339. jae
    Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 9:07 PM | Permalink

    You miss the fact that the surface would be emitting IR at close to its current rate, during the day there will be some conduction heating near the surface and some associated convection. At night however the surface would fairly rapidly radiatively cool and soon be cooler than the atmosphere above it and therefore cool it. So your scenario of perpetual heating will not occur.

    Maybe, but we have no idea how much conduction there is, correcto? Maybe it is a large part of the puzzle. How do you know otherwise?

  340. jae
    Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 9:17 PM | Permalink

    Phil: just for fun (which is what I am doing here tonight), what if the N2 only gets 0.1% of the energy from conduction, could it not still accumulate for 100 years, since it has no way to get rid of the energy, except conduction back to the surface? :)

  341. Phil.
    Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 9:43 PM | Permalink

    Jae, no because it will lose heat to the surface at night.

  342. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 9:58 PM | Permalink

    279 (Chris)
    RE an All N atmosphere (no oxygen to intercept UVC, no water, no clouds)

    The ground would heat fiercely throughout the day at 1366W/m^2 The ground would lose heat in 2 ways, by black body radiation, losing IR radiation back to space, and by heating the immediate layer of nitrogen above its surface, which would set off convective processes, adiabatic expansion and a gradual cooling with height in the atmosphere. How high I can’t guess, maybe all the way to the top – there are no obvious reasons why a temperature inversion should occur.

    Agreed.

    But is N2 truly immune from attack by all forms of short wave radiation in the real world that contains oxygen and water vapour? And, is this discussion, focussing on nitrogen and oxygen, relevant?

    In this respect have a look at a study at http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/Study/BlanketClouds/ where these statements appear:

    By combining the SAGE stratospheric data with an estimate for the tropospheric concentration, Zender estimated the total concentration of nitrogen dioxide in a column through which sunlight passed. He was thus able to account for the radiation absorption by nitrogen dioxide.

    “What we were looking for was absorption we couldn’t explain,” Zender said. We knew how much sunlight was entering the top of the atmosphere and we knew how much was hitting the surface. We also knew how much was at about one kilometer and 13 kilometers because we had aircraft at those altitudes measuring sunlight.” This combination gave them a vertical distribution of sunlight in the atmosphere.

    “We could rule out some of the absorption’s being mysterious because we knew it was absorption by nitrogen dioxide,” he added. “It wasn’t very much, but we were doing a high precision model-observation comparison.”

    Yet, even after accounting for absorption by all known trace gases, clouds and aerosols, the total absorption of solar radiation in cloudy conditions was still not explained. “In other words,” Zender said, “there’s something missing in the theory.”

    In clear skies, the model and the observations agreed very well, with no statistically significant discrepancy between the model estimates and the observations.

    Under cloudy skies, however, the difference was substantial. Models underestimate the absorption in clouds by a factor of about 40 percent. “We couldn’t explain 100 watts of the 250 watts of absorption we measured in overcast skies at noontime,” Zender said.

    And Zender’s reading list on the subject is at http://dust.ess.uci.edu/ppr/bib_aca.pdf

    So, we are looking at a substantial absorbtion of solar radiation by clouds within the troposphere. We have lots of cloud currently in the atmosphere in places like Australia that are normally a largely cloud free zone. Is this connected with solar minimum that brings us relatively low levels of short wave irradiation and the reduction of atmospheric heating from this source? Is cloud cover the product of a balance between atmospheric humidity and varying solar radiation? Is atmospheric humidity not affected by heat emission by large land masses both factors (irradiance and increased OLR) tending to work in the same direction, enhancing the fraction of solar radiation recieved at the surface?

    To clarify what I am ‘about’, since there seems to be some doubt in the mind of both Andrew and Leif, it is to explain the major fluctuations that we see in surface temperatures that relate to ENSO events. I want to focus on observed temperature change and point out possible causes. There seems to be a reluctance to do this. I wonder why this eminently sensible approach, quite common in other spheres of activity, is ruled out in this particular case.

  343. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 11:00 PM | Permalink

    If only UVC can impart the energy responsible for ozone, and it is all absorbed high in the stratosphere) what is it that creates ozone immediately above and below the tropopause?

    Is it not the solubility of ozone in water that is responsible for the low ozone levels below the tropopause and also at the top of the stratosphere where temperatures can rise above zero at some times of the year?

    If UVC (

  344. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 22, 2008 at 11:52 PM | Permalink

    To continue:
    If UVC (

  345. Chris Knight
    Posted Apr 23, 2008 at 1:25 AM | Permalink

    324, 325 etc. Sorry Leif, I was being flippant, (as denoted by my ;) ) you posed the question perfectly, and the answer I knew, but here goes my cred now :(

    My Observers Book of Astronomy, Patrick Moore, Warne 1962, which I have had since I was 10, is open to page 152, and I quote from it now:

    “Whereas the photosphere has a temperature of about 6,000 deg Centigrade, the spot is 2,000 degrees cooler, and so emits less light; yet if it could be shining by itself its brilliancy, area for area would far surpass that of an arc lamp.”

    335, Phil, you may be right, but this method of heating at the surface causing convection and pressure gradients works pretty well for one planet with less than 1% of greenhouse gases, in large dry, arid regions causes mirages, dust devils and sandstorms. On Mars, with it’s thin 95% CO2 atmosphere has winds of great velocity, but low energy, near its equatorial zones due to pressure gradients set up by convection over areas with low albedo, reaching high into the Martian atmosphere. This is no greenhouse effect.

    Not only the surface radiates IR. Gases radiate heat in relation to their absolute temperature – in all directions. Just because a gas is not a greenhouse gas, does not mean it cannot emit IR, it just does not have the property of absorbing energy of particular wavelengths, and releasing energy lower in the spectrum.

    Boyle’s law refers to “an ideal gas”, and is an approximation which can generally be shown to hold for most gases, under normal circumstances in the same way that Newtonian gravitational theory is good for most purposes. However, real gases also lose or gain heat by radiation due to inelastic collisions, intermolecular forces and the like. Thus N2 heats up in the stratosphere due to kinetic energy exchange with newly formed ozone as discussed earlier.

    N2 World gas is not an ideal gas, it is just nitrogen. And there is a lot of it, and all the little deviations from ideal gas behaviour lead to the gas heating and cooling in ways, just as they do on earth today, slightly differently from the classical theory.

    But as I said, you may be right – who knows?

  346. Phil.
    Posted Apr 23, 2008 at 7:04 AM | Permalink

    345(Chris)

    335, Phil, you may be right, but this method of heating at the surface causing convection and pressure gradients works pretty well for one planet with less than 1% of greenhouse gases, in large dry, arid regions causes mirages, dust devils and sandstorms. On Mars, with it’s thin 95% CO2 atmosphere has winds of great velocity, but low energy, near its equatorial zones due to pressure gradients set up by convection over areas with low albedo, reaching high into the Martian atmosphere. This is no greenhouse effect.

    In both those cases you have radiative heat transfer to the atmosphere, in the nitrogen atmosphere this won’t happen, conduction is much less effective.

    Not only the surface radiates IR. Gases radiate heat in relation to their absolute temperature – in all directions. Just because a gas is not a greenhouse gas, does not mean it cannot emit IR, it just does not have the property of absorbing energy of particular wavelengths, and releasing energy lower in the spectrum.

    Actually it means exactly that, N2 can neither emit nor absorb IR.

    Boyle’s law refers to “an ideal gas”, and is an approximation which can generally be shown to hold for most gases, under normal circumstances in the same way that Newtonian gravitational theory is good for most purposes. However, real gases also lose or gain heat by radiation due to inelastic collisions, intermolecular forces and the like. Thus N2 heats up in the stratosphere due to kinetic energy exchange with newly formed ozone as discussed earlier.

    Collisional heating/cooling is a different matter but N2 so heated still won’t emit in the IR. In the N2 atmosphere there would be no ‘newly formed ozone’.

    N2 World gas is not an ideal gas, it is just nitrogen. And there is a lot of it, and all the little deviations from ideal gas behaviour lead to the gas heating and cooling in ways, just as they do on earth today, slightly differently from the classical theory.

    But as I said, you may be right – who knows?

    Just about any physical chemist or spectroscopist for starters.

  347. kim
    Posted Apr 23, 2008 at 7:17 AM | Permalink

    283 (Leif) Two cycles with peaked cosmic rays and one with rounded, alternate on approximately PDO oscillation time, with two cycles with rounded CR and one with peaked. If the pointiness of the cosmic ray peak does have to do with variable energy output which is magnified, then this mechanism could explain a cooling PDO alternating with a heating PDO.
    ======================================================

  348. Pete
    Posted Apr 23, 2008 at 7:30 AM | Permalink

    347(kim): Can you rephrase please!?

    Actually, Spencer mentions this is his now new released Paper on Cloud feedbacks. He relates PDO and ENSO phasings to internal radiative forcing which is being left out of the mainstream thinking.

    He offers his own commentary here, just written yesterday:

    Spencer

  349. Posted Apr 23, 2008 at 7:42 AM | Permalink

    347 (kim): the pointiness of cosmic ray flux is such a small second order effect that it has no effect on anything as long as any first order effect of CRs is debatable.

  350. kim
    Posted Apr 23, 2008 at 7:47 AM | Permalink

    349 (Leif) Well, if we are already talking magnification by unknown mechanism, then second order effects might stiil be of use. It seems the first order effects aren’t definitive. Pointy or roundy might accentuate time variables.
    =====================================================

  351. Chris Knight
    Posted Apr 23, 2008 at 7:57 AM | Permalink

    342 etc., (Erl)

    Ozone is produced in various ways in the troposphere, not involving UVC, chemically, and also via natural electrical discharges (some of which do emit short-wave UV!) etc. The reactions are published all over the place on the internet.

    I agree that clouds are not fully understood, and form a large, uncertain part of the energy budget in the troposphere.

    In the real world nitrogen is a weakly reactive gas, and due to its trivalent chemistry, has a complex array of reaction products with divalent reactive gases such as oxygen, details of which are also widely available online.

  352. Posted Apr 23, 2008 at 7:59 AM | Permalink

    350 (kim): to paraphrase Rumsfeld: we can talk about the known knowns, worry about the known unknowns, but I wouldn’t lose sleep over the unknown unknowns. And it is pointless to debate the unknown knowns.

  353. Posted Apr 23, 2008 at 8:14 AM | Permalink

    343 (Erl): UVc and ozone in the Troposphere. Good ole Wikipedia has some answers to your questions:
    “Tropospheric ozone has two sources: about 10 % is transported down from the stratosphere while the remainder is created in smaller amounts through different mechanisms.”

    Read up on the Brewer-Dobson circulation.

    and also this handy image:

  354. Pat Keating
    Posted Apr 23, 2008 at 11:20 AM | Permalink

    I assume that the fall-off in your graph above 20km is due to the reduction in O2 molecular density with altitude, but what is the reason for the fall off below 20km as the altitude drops? Lack of UV-b? Water-vapor chemistry? Something else?

  355. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Apr 23, 2008 at 11:20 AM | Permalink

    BTW those of you discussing amounts, nitrogen is 78% by volume, 75% by mass. We also know it’s mostly inert and mostly transparent to IR — But it does absorb UV starting at 100 nm. It’s got a thermal conductivity of .000259 W/cm K. Anyway. The point being, totally different atmosphere layers, and a lack of oxygen and everything else including ozone, methane, hydrogen and helium. And all the chemical interactions. Plus, don’t forget ozone photolysis and just one of the big ones:

    Ozone is produced in the upper atmosphere when O2 combines with atomic oxygen made by the splitting of O2 by ultraviolet (UV) radiation. Since ozone absorbs strongly in the UV region of the spectrum, it functions as a protective radiation shield for the planet.

    If you wanted to compare Earth with all nitrogen, Titan’s atmosphere is the only thing close (about 98% nitrogen) but is really too different as a celestial body to compare to, not least of which are size, distance from sun, albedo, synchronous orbit with Saturn, and the atmospheric pressure. But it does have water.

    But here’s a comparison from NASA though, FWIW.

    Earth v. Titan

    Titan

    Andrew 335:

    Too heavy for escape velocity, I see. So from Earth, how much energy does it take to get 14 u of mass going 40,000 KPH so its kinetic energy equals its gravitational potential energy? :)

    Seriously, how far up does gravity keep an inert diatomic gas with an atomic weight of 14 in an atmosphere consisting only of it? That’s the issue. What’s the density of nitrogen at each of the atmospheric layers starting at the stratosphere now versus then? We already know that 22% of the current dry gas atmosphere is not nitrogen; how much does that help to hold in the 78% that is? Since we know 99.9% of the atmosphere is in the trop/strat, does that mean we get an atmosphere that only reaches up ~48 KM filled with nitrogen, or can it get higher or not as high without the other dry gases and water vapor and everything else that goes on? That’s what I mean by holding it in. It certainly wouldn’t be anything like the one we have now.

    Chris 321:

    Sure, but what is a “warm still summer day” in an atmosphere of all nitrogen on this planet instead of the atmosphere we have now? What kind of convection, how do we get cumulus clouds, what is the warm breeze, where’s the denser cooler air. How dense, how cool, how warm, how breezy?

    As far as what can escape, be lost, whatever, on this planet, with this atmosphere, it’s one thing. What about an all nitrogen atmosphere, extending how far up? Are we keeping all the liquid water? What happens to all the interactions that currently exist in the various spheres, what do they do now with no oxygen and none of the things currently in play in the carbon cycle?

    The entire idea is unphysical and not possible.

  356. Posted Apr 23, 2008 at 12:14 PM | Permalink

    354 (Pat):

    I assume that the fall-off in your graph above 20km is due to the reduction in O2 molecular density with altitude, but what is the reason for the fall off below 20km as the altitude drops? Lack of UV-b? Water-vapor chemistry? Something else?

    The behavior of Ozone is well-known and can be found in any text book or wikipedia. The falloff below 20 km is simply that the UV-c is used up by the higher layers.

  357. Posted Apr 23, 2008 at 12:28 PM | Permalink

    The phrases “I think” and “I assume” are also unscientific. It’s better to say “I infer from this and this that…”

  358. Posted Apr 23, 2008 at 12:32 PM | Permalink

    Well… The reason I said that is because I didn’t see the reasons for assuming that the fall-off, in Leif’s graph, above 20 Km was due to the reduction of Oxygen molecular density.

  359. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Apr 23, 2008 at 12:34 PM | Permalink

    For those interested, it appears that an atom of nitrogen has a mass of 2.3×10^−29 g

    If I have this correctly, it’s 1/2m * v^2 so on Earth v^2 is around 1.25×10^8 so the energy needed should be about 1.5×10^-18 joules

    Unless I have this all mixed up as far as getting that amount of mass going 11200 m/s

  360. Andrew
    Posted Apr 23, 2008 at 12:37 PM | Permalink

    355 (Sam): I think you meant that to be directed at Phil.

  361. Posted Apr 23, 2008 at 12:49 PM | Permalink

    300-360 (many): I know that I started this N2 world, but it is drifting OT [remember: solar influence], so let’s try to throttle back some of the sidelines.

  362. Vic Sage
    Posted Apr 23, 2008 at 12:54 PM | Permalink

    RE: 359

    And the percentage of molecules with that or higher energy would be

    e^(-1.5*10^-18 J/ (kB * T))

  363. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 23, 2008 at 1:05 PM | Permalink

    353 (Leif)
    Do not UBA and UVB carry sufficient energy to be involved in the photolysis of oxygen and therefore get involved in the creation of ozone?

  364. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 23, 2008 at 1:19 PM | Permalink

    Leif
    The good ole NOAA are working for us. See http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/stratosphere/strat-trop/
    Diagrams there showing temperature averages and anomalies from the surface to 50KM since 1979. For the hemispheres seperately and also the tropics. What do you make of the temperature maxima in April and November at about 40km in the tropics. That maxima is not related either to surface heating or to January perihelion. Equinoxial.

  365. Posted Apr 23, 2008 at 1:33 PM | Permalink

    363 (Erl):

    Do not UBA and UVB carry sufficient energy to be involved in the photolysis of oxygen and therefore get involved in the creation of ozone?

    Ozone formation occurs in the atmosphere above 30-25 km altitude where solar UV of wavelength less than 242nm dissociates molecular oxygen:
    O2 + UVC => O + O
    The oxygen atoms react with O2 in the presence of a third molecule M (could be N2 or O2) to produce O3:
    O + O2 + M => O3 + M
    This reaction is for all practical purposes the only reaction that produces ozone in the atmosphere.
    UVA 400 nm – 315 nm
    UVB 315 nm – 280 nm
    UVC 280 nm – 100 nm
    .
    So the answer is a simple “NO”.

  366. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Apr 23, 2008 at 1:37 PM | Permalink

    #360 Andrew: Yeah, sorry, I meant phil.
    #361 Leif: It’s impossible and unphysical, and once you remove oxygen et al, very different… So yes, pretty much OT.
    #362 Vic: Ugh, math. :)
    #363 Erl: There’s a bunch of stuff going on. Stratopheric Photochemistry

  367. cba
    Posted Apr 23, 2008 at 2:11 PM | Permalink

    361 (Leif):

    care to pose a specific direction you’d like to head towards now?

  368. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 23, 2008 at 2:17 PM | Permalink

    366 (Sam)
    Thanks, you are a living national treasure.

  369. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 23, 2008 at 2:27 PM | Permalink

    365 (Leif)
    OK, so much of the UVA and a fair bit of UVB get through the stratosphere having run the ozone gauntlet. Can they now heat any components of the troposphere? Diagram at 353 shows continuing attrition through the troposphere. e.g. gases, particulates, water vapour, the cloud layer?

  370. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Apr 23, 2008 at 4:44 PM | Permalink

    You’re welcome Erl.

    I’m just remembering off the top of my head, but there’s 10%ish ozone in the troposphere and is negative forcing pollution stuff (basically).

  371. Posted Apr 23, 2008 at 5:13 PM | Permalink

    369 (Erl):

    OK, so much of the UVA and a fair bit of UVB get through the stratosphere having run the ozone gauntlet. Can they now heat any components of the troposphere?

    Because some [a very small amount] of ozone is transported down into the troposphere, it can there still absorb some of the UVB, but this is a very small amount of heat. Once gotten past the ozone, the radiation continues to the surface like the rest of the solar radiation. On its way, there is the usual reflection and absorption by clouds, aerosols, dust, gunk, etc as with the rest of the radiation. There is no preferential heating of the atmosphere by the UV compared to the other wavelengths. Isn’t all this textbook stuff?

  372. Posted Apr 23, 2008 at 5:48 PM | Permalink

    371 (Erl): to put the UV flux in perspective, the Sun’s output between 0 and 300nm is 16 W/m2, between 300nm and 400nm 93 W/mw, between 400nm and 500nm 186 W/m2, between 500 and 600 nm 185 W/m2, between 600nm and 700nm 161 W/m2, between 700nm and 800nm 126 W/m2, between 800nm and 1000nm 185 W/m2, between 1000nm and 1500nm 238 W/m2, between 1500nm and 3000nm 151 W/m2, above 3000nm 25 W/m2.

  373. cba
    Posted Apr 23, 2008 at 7:46 PM | Permalink

    372 (Leif):

    is that measured or is that the calculated BB curve for the photosphere?

  374. Posted Apr 23, 2008 at 7:59 PM | Permalink

    373 (cba): The data is from Froehlich, C, and London, J. eds(1986): Revised Instruction Manual on Radiation Instruments and Measurements, WCRP Publ. Series 7, WMO/TD No. 149, Geneva. The data is measured.
    A good indication of this is seen when we break it up into smaller pieces, e.g.
    350.5 1.119 W/m2/nm
    355.5 1.058
    360.5 0.979
    365.5 1.263
    370.5 1.075
    375.5 1.141
    380.5 1.289
    385.5 0.954

    A calculated BB spectrum would have the spectral irradiance [the second column] increase monotonically.

  375. Pat Keating
    Posted Apr 23, 2008 at 8:07 PM | Permalink

    356 Leif
    Thanks for the response — you are a better reference source than wikipedia. I was going to ask the same question Erl asked in 363.

    357, 358 Nasif
    You are correct, if a little pedantic, Naif.
    The reason I inferred it is that it is falling off roughly exponentially, with a characteristic distance of about 7.5km, consistent with the known fall-off of molecular density with altitude. Does that help?

    After reading Leif’s 365, however, it would appear that the rate of O3 production is probably quadratic in local molecular density, and would fall off faster were it not for the inverse effect of the fall off of UV-c with decreasing altitude.

    Leif, is there a review paper with a math explanation for the curve in question?

  376. cba
    Posted Apr 23, 2008 at 8:09 PM | Permalink

    so resolution of that device is 5nm?

    which sat. or d evice is is that one?

  377. Posted Apr 23, 2008 at 8:30 PM | Permalink

    367 (cba):

    care to pose a specific direction you’d like to head towards now?

    Yes, in fact, I do. There is a 90 W/m2 variation of TSI over the year, the solar cycle variation of TSI is 1 W/m2. If the 1 W has any effect, then the 90 W should have an effect. Where is it? And I do not buy any hand waving that the 1 W is amplified but the 90 not. TSI less than 355 nm is 60 W/m2. Over the year that portion varies 7% or 4.2 W/m2, so more than four times as much as the solar cycle variation of TSI, even if we assume [which is not the case] that ALL of that variation is solely in the UV below 355nm.

  378. Posted Apr 23, 2008 at 9:06 PM | Permalink

    376 (cba): I don’t know what the resolution is, I think the table is just given at 5nm intervals, so that e.g. 360.5 means 5nm centered on 360.5nm. I’ll ask Claus Froehlich.

    375 (Pat):

    is there a review paper with a math explanation for the curve in question?

    This is textbook stuff and can be found in a zillion places. Try google [chapman mechanism ozone] a bit. The reactions were discovered by Sidney Chapman in: Chapman, S. (1930) A theory of upper atmospheric ozone, Mem. Roy. Meteorol. Soc. volume 3, p 103-125.

  379. Phil.
    Posted Apr 23, 2008 at 9:50 PM | Permalink

    Re #359

    I was away all afternoon so I was unable to get back to you before. A general rule of thumb is: if the average gas molecule speed for a gas is less than
    0.2×(the escape velocity), then more than 1/2 of that type of gas will be left after one billion years. If the average speed is greater than that critical value, then more than 1/2 of that type of gas will be gone after one billion years. For diatomic nitrogen (MW 28) the Vrms= ~450m/s @ 273K and escape velocity = 11.200 m/s, Vrms will decrease with sqrt(temperature) and if the N2 is dissociated will increase by sqrt(2) so use a value of ~600 m/s.
    0.2xVesc= 2240m/s so a Nitrogen atmosphere will be longlived

  380. Posted Apr 23, 2008 at 9:53 PM | Permalink

    379 (Phil,Sam): you are drifting Off Topic here. Back to solar, please.

  381. Posted Apr 23, 2008 at 11:58 PM | Permalink

    # 375

    Pat,

    I apologize, I had no intention on being pathetic. Thanks for the explanation.

    # 251

    Chris Knight,

    There was a time when Earth has a dense ringed cloud of dust, water vapor and a mixture of gases where the first biomolecules formed microspheres that will give place to protobionts. However, it was a first rain, and a first lake, and the first lotic waters and the first atmosphere, the first etc., etc. Now, the question is, was a younger Sun more or less powerful than now? Leif and Earl won’t disagree with me if I say that the “newborn” stars emit more radiation than the elder stars, energy like X-Rays. But in the primitive Earth oceans didn’t exist… There were no oceans, so there were no ENSO and Ozonosphere. Can you imagine what the Sun was doing with our poor Earth? Perhaps the key of the last influence of the Sun on Earth is that ringed dusty cloud surrounding the Earth?

  382. Posted Apr 24, 2008 at 3:21 AM | Permalink

    381 (Nasif):

    Now, the question is, was a younger Sun more or less powerful than now?

    This is well known. The newborn sun was 30% dimmer than now. The luminosity of the Sun has been increasing throughout the life of the sun, and will continue to do so.

  383. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 24, 2008 at 4:22 AM | Permalink

    377 (Leif)

    There is a 90 W/m2 variation of TSI over the year, the solar cycle variation of TSI is 1 W/m2. If the 1 W has any effect, then the 90 W should have an effect. Where is it?

    Great question. What the Earth does with the 90 Watts reveals the Earth system dynamics that must be understood if we are to trace what happens to the single watt.

    To make progress it will be helpful to know what has happened to temperatures below the tropopause in the tropical troposphere since 1979. It seems that anomalies will be seen above the 500mb pressure level.

  384. cba
    Posted Apr 24, 2008 at 6:41 AM | Permalink

    377 (Leif):

    I’ve been wondering some of that too. Hence my earlier interest in the Jul Jan differences mentioned in the past. One thing right off the bat here is that the measured albedo over the last 5 yrs or so shows rather consistantly a variation between 0.32 or 0.33 and 0.29. I’m trying to recall but it might be that the higher one is Jul – which makes your question more relevent rather than less. I also don’t think I’ve looked at the full variations over the year as of yet.

    One of the things I found earlier too was that the longer uV that reaches the surface deposits deeper into the ocean than most or all visible light. Your shorter stuff of course doesn’t tend to make it to the surface and is involved in both atmospheric heating and in atmospheric chemistry that can affect the radiative characteristics as well. This is where the potential differences between the impact of a tiny power change versus a massive power variation could manifest itself. Obviously, 90 W/m^2 of heat trumps 1 W/m^2 of heat were all other factors equal. But, the other factors are not equal. They differ in time length and in spectral content and in the potential effects that will occur because of the spectral content. Another difference is the nature of what the surface is – mostly always the ocean for the +90W/m^2 in the SH (in recent times) whereas with the longer term small variation, it is rather random as to which hemisphere is receiving it.

  385. kim
    Posted Apr 24, 2008 at 7:15 AM | Permalink

    348 (Pete) and
    352 (Leif) Well-paraphrased, L, and as you point out, it is a small second order effect. But if cosmic rays are key, or part or the key, they don’t have to move the whole gate. I wonder how cosmic rays effect UV behaviour. If we sun worshippers are right, then the sun’s direction of climate is not necessarily going to be by a simple mechanism.
    =======================================================

  386. Posted Apr 24, 2008 at 7:26 AM | Permalink

    384 (cba): The UV is such a small fraction of the total that it hardly counts. To state the flux [at TOA] again, with the 7% yearly variation after the ‘;':
    UVC 100-290nm 10 W/m2; 0.7 W/m2
    UVB 290-320nm 17 W/m2; 1.2 W/m2
    UVA 320-400nm 82 W/m2; 5.7 W/m2
    out of total 1367 W/m2; 90 W/m2

    They differ in time length and in spectral content and in the potential effects that will occur because of the spectral content

    Since all of those things are well-known, one should be able to quantify these effects, but I haven’t seen any such. What I read into this ‘failure’ is not that people haven’t done it, but that they have, and the effects or differences were not significant enough to publish. You know: “I looked hard for the effect of X, but couldn’t find any, so here is my great and definitive paper on that”. Very few of those.

  387. Posted Apr 24, 2008 at 7:29 AM | Permalink

    385 (kim):

    I wonder how cosmic rays effect UV behaviour

    They don’t. Although ‘behavior’ is vague enough to give anybody a way out.

  388. kim
    Posted Apr 24, 2008 at 7:39 AM | Permalink

    387 (Leif) Yes, ‘behaviour’ was my second choice; my first was ‘effect’. But speaking of the effect of an effect sounded ignorant, even for an auditor. Now, how do clouds ‘effect’ the UV ‘behaviour’?
    ==========================================

  389. Posted Apr 24, 2008 at 7:53 AM | Permalink

    388 (kim): Clouds reflects UV as they do all other radiation [with the exception of very long wavelengths]. Only ‘low’ clouds are claimed to be influenced by CRs, and presumably the UV would run into the high clouds first, but now we are talking about mites on the tail of gnats on the antennas of fleas on the whiskers of mice… As I said to cba, unless you quantify this [at least to orders of magnitude] it doesn’t count in my book. I do not consider it fruitful to at length elaborate on:
    “is it not conceivable that…”
    “if you don’t know X, how can you exclude X…”
    “might it not be…” [Tweedledee, `if it was so, it might be; and if it were so, it would be; but as it isn't, it ain't. That's logic.']

  390. cba
    Posted Apr 24, 2008 at 8:03 AM | Permalink

    386 (Leif):

    Sorry about getting the albedo backwards and wrong in #384.

    Albedo – measured 2001-2005

    January 0.316-0.319

    July 0.296 – 0.299

    Mean diff. around 0.02 corresponds to about 27 w/m^2 worth of your 90 w/m^2, around 1/3.

    And, it’s suggestive of a significant negative feedback mechanism since surface albedo in the southern hemisphere should be somewhat less than that in the northern hemisphere due to all that ocean contributing about 1/4 or less of what land does.

    Also, for a mostly measured, partly calculated, net energy balance, January provides a net gain from 1975-2005 of over 10 W/m^2 (peaking in 1996 to about 17 W/m&2) and then dropping to 7 W/m^2 after 2005. July tends to hang around a 5 W/m^2 energy loss until around 2005 where it shifts to around 1-2 W/m^2 energy loss. Data goes through 2007.

  391. Posted Apr 24, 2008 at 8:18 AM | Permalink

    390 (cba): I get 36W/m2 rather than your 27W/m2, but still ~1/3 is a good number. But presumably, the albedo would work on the 1 W/m2 solar cycle effect as well, so the relative effect would not change.

  392. Posted Apr 24, 2008 at 8:22 AM | Permalink

    That’s the answer I was waiting for. That could mean that the Intensity of Solar Irradiance (ISI) was around 1050 Wm-2 in the origins of the Sun. If the increasing of solar irradiance was constant, it would mean ~ 3.56 X 10-9 Wm-2 of increase per year. Something there impeded the incoming of the full radiation to Earth; for example, a cloud of dust, water vapor, etc., which was covering the planet. From 1611 AD to date, ISI has increased from 1364.7338 Wm-2 to 1366.6744 Wm-2, that is, 1.9406 Wm-2 in about 400 years, smoothing the data. However, we cannot infer a stable increase because there were some years when ISI was lower than 1364 Wm-2 and some years when ISI was higher than 1366 Wm-2. We could conclude from these data that something odd is happening to our star, or it could mean that ISI is not constant. I hope a good explanation on this issue.

  393. Posted Apr 24, 2008 at 8:31 AM | Permalink

    262 (Chris,me): The 90W/m2 effect can be clearly seen in the stratospheric temperature at 41 km altitude, then getting smaller and smaller with decreasing altitude until disappearing at 21 km just under the ozone layer. This is, of course, simply because the atmosphere is now transparent for the remaining radiation until the surface. So, the question is what happens to the annual hump there? What to the models say about that?

  394. Posted Apr 24, 2008 at 8:47 AM | Permalink

    392 (Nasif):

    Something there impeded the incoming of the full radiation to Earth

    No, it was the Sun itself that was dimmer. The Sun was shining less. The sun was emitting less heat and light. Nothing was shading the Earth. It was the Sun that was intrinsically less bright.

    From 1611 AD to date, ISI has increased from 1364.7338 Wm-2 to 1366.6744 Wm-2, that is, 1.9406 Wm-2 in about 400 years,

    Where do you get these numbers from. People might disagree with me [and some do, although the difference has become less and less as time goes on], but here is my reconstruction of TSI [your ISI?] since 1611:

  395. Posted Apr 24, 2008 at 9:32 AM | Permalink

    391 (me): The change of albedo from Jan to Jul is, of course, not really relevant for the solar cycle variation of incoming solar radiation. Goode and Palle has this plot showing albedo since 1984:

    Globally averaged reconstruction (black) of albedo anomalies from ISCCP cloud amount, optical thickness, and surface reflectance (following Palle´ et al., 2006). In blue are the observed earthshine albedo anomalies. All observations agree with the reconstruction to within the 1s uncertainties, except for the year with sparse ES data, 2003. The shaded region 1999 through mid-2001 was used to calibrate the reconstruction and is the reference against which anomalies are defined. The right hand vertical scale shows the deficit in SW forcing relative to 1999–2001.

    I don’t like their use of percentages to characterize changes. Their 10% corresponds to a change of 0.1*0.3 = 0.03, of same order of magnitude as the Jan-Jul difference.

    Their paper [P.R. Goode, E. Palle´ / Journal of Atmospheric and Solar-Terrestrial Physics 69 (2007) 1556–1568] concludes:
    In this paper we have reviewed the physical mechanisms behind solar irradiance variation, and we have reviewed how on the timescale of solar evolution, the Sun cannot have been any dimmer than it is at the most recent activity minima. We have also shown how concurrent changes in the Earth’s reflectance can produce a much larger climate impact over relatively short time scales. Thus, a possible Sun–albedo link, would have the potential to produce large climate effects without the need for significant excursions in solar irradiance. These could provide an explanation for the apparently large climate response to apparently small solar changes, as well as how the 11/22 year solar cycle is imprinted on Earth. [...]

  396. ejmohr
    Posted Apr 24, 2008 at 9:39 AM | Permalink

    392 (Nasif):

    If you are extrapolating the annual increase in SI from the origins of the sun, then I think your numbers are out by several orders of magnitude. As a rough guess, say the sun is 4 x 10^9 years old and irradiance has increased by 400 watts/m since that time. Then the annual increase in TSI would be 1 x 10^-7 watts per year, or one ten millionth of a watt per year. We would not be able to measure that.

  397. Posted Apr 24, 2008 at 9:59 AM | Permalink

    395 (me):
    From Goode and Palle:
    Globally-averaged monthly mean total cloud amount from the ISCCP data:

    Note how this tracks the albedo [not a surprise because the albedo was reconstructed from the clouds cover [except the curve in blue on the previous plot]. Also that the cloud cover is larger in northern winter, accounting for the Jan-Jul difference in albedo cba was referring to, somewhat offsetting the annual variation of TSI.

  398. Posted Apr 24, 2008 at 10:25 AM | Permalink

    397 (me): It is fun just to flip the cloud-cover image upside down. that should give us a temperature curve:

  399. cba
    Posted Apr 24, 2008 at 10:35 AM | Permalink

    390 (Leif):

    what is your 37 number? There could be some communications confusion here.

    My 27 W/m^2 is not the albedo fraction of the 90 W/m^2 orbital variation. It is 1366 x 0.02 the albedo difference – perhaps a bit too crude. Using the 1366 +/- 45 and the appropriate albedo values for jan and jul (eyeballed average), I get TOA albedo reflection of 447.3 W/m^2 in jan versus 392.3 for a difference of 55 W/m^2 out of the 90 W/m^2 leaving 35 W/m^2 of the difference being reflected away.

    The albedo variation and orbital power variation are synchronized. The increased power is always in the SH and decreased in the NH (for modern times). The solar cycle variation is not synchronized although it will be modulated by these factors (and is still much smaller).

    I don’t know what to think of that Goode Palle’ paper. As I read it, they claim no brightening of the sun over solar evolutionary time. That seems in error, big time, with what is known of stellar evolution. Their other conclusions seem to be dead on with what I think is going on (where my scientific intuition is leading me).

    Interesting how the albedo was dropping like a rock while things were warming, peaking around 1998 in T then dropping off the T increases when the albedo started rising.

  400. cba
    Posted Apr 24, 2008 at 10:53 AM | Permalink

    (Leif):

    bear in mind now that we have a 1 w/m2 long term modulation and a 55 W/m^2 short term modulation and compare that to the claimed 1.7 W/m^2 long term co2 factor and the 3.6 w/m^2 of the supposed doubling factor. Then compare to a longer term 6-8% variable albedo which results in longer term variations of over 24 W/m^2 at the TOA or 6 W/m^2 averaged over the surface.

  401. Chris Knight
    Posted Apr 24, 2008 at 11:14 AM | Permalink

    381 (Nasif)

    (OT, sorry Leif)

    I agree it must have been a pretty hostile place. So much so, that I cannot imagine how life took hold so soon after conditions became permissible for ?bacteria?, even in their most hardy and durable forms to survive. I would therefore infer an older, extraterrestrial origin of life, on a planet, perhaps long gone, formed much earlier in the history of the universe. If the earth was “infected” once, the potential for repeated infection remains a possibility.

    One also has to consider the role of the moon, being in such a close orbit that tidal friction would heat the oceans and land considerably more than it does today.

    Walter Munk’s lovely 1968 paper “Once again-Tidal Friction”

    http://articles.adsabs.harvard.edu/cgi-bin/nph-iarticle_query?1968QJRAS…9..352M&data_type=PDF_HIGH&whole_paper=YES&type=PRINTER&filetype=.pdf
    (yet again I have problems linking :(search adsabs for walter munk, and you can download the full pdf)
    has an interesting analysis of the effects of the theory put forward by Alfven in 1963, and Gerstenkorn’s model in 1967 of early Lunar Tidal Friction for a moon orbiting within a few earth radii.

    Although Lunar origin theory has been supeceded By Hartmann and Davis, the moon must have at one time orbited much closer than today, and the tidal influence must have been significantly greater, as was the corresponding forcing.

    In terms of energies involved, pergaps more than enough to outweigh the output from a dim young sun, or a sun dimmed by intervening dustclouds?

    Also OT now, But does anyone have any contacts at NASA’s VPL re. virtual planet models for N2world?

  402. Posted Apr 24, 2008 at 11:37 AM | Permalink

    # 394

    Leif… Thanks for the explanation.

    Regarding your question about my numbers, I took them lazily from Lean’s work, but I can see your numbers are quite different than those of Wang (2005) and Lean (2001). Your plot has a higher base and shorter amplitude, besides it is smoother than the graph plotted from Lean’s paper, and even from Wang numbers. I suppose all you used the same proxies, so I’m obliged to ask on the reason for the differences. It is important for me because, if I consider only the Lean’s data, there would be a good basis for considering a direct link between GW and Total Solar Irradiance (your TSI). If I take only your data, then the link almost vanishes, given place, perhaps, to more variables, which could be internal or intrinsic variables other than anthropogenic. For the last reason, I would like more your numbers than Lean’s numbers.

  403. Posted Apr 24, 2008 at 11:41 AM | Permalink

    399 (cba):

    they claim no brightening of the sun over solar evolutionary time.

    That was a bad choice of words on their part. I know both of them well and have taken them to task on this. What they meant was simply ‘long-term’, but not so long that the physical parameters [radius, gravity, composition] have changed. Helioseismology finds a very good agreement between observation and theory based on current values of solar physical properties.

    The W/m2 numbers: My calculation goes like this:
    January: TSI=1408, A=0.317 reflected, 1-A=0.683 absorbed. TSI*(1-A)[Jan]= 962 W/m2
    July: TSI=1317, A=0.297 reflected, 1-A=0.703 absorbed. TSI*(1-A)[Jul] = 926 W/m2
    TSI[Jan]-TSI[Jul]=91 W/m2; TSI*(1-A)[Jan]-TSI(1-A)[Jul]=962-926=36 W/m2
    Now before we begin to compare with other numbers there is the divisor of 4 because the Earth is round.

    Maybe you want to recompute some of the numbers in #400…

  404. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Apr 24, 2008 at 11:57 AM | Permalink

    The N2 world is Titan, can’t happen here, and the escape velocity of a N2 atom might be an interesting bit of trivia, but immaterial also.

    Leif;

    The sun clearly cycles. The calculations are ‘disturbed’ by all the other things going on. Or as I like to say “Some people run to the ICE, and some run to the SUN.” The ice is a lot closer though. :D

    Seriously, it’s difficult to put things into perspective when we’re only around for a few decades when you’re talking about things that go for hundreds, thousands or millions of years. Perhaps that’s why all the confusion.

  405. Posted Apr 24, 2008 at 12:08 PM | Permalink

    # 401

    Chris,

    (OT also, Leif… it will be the last OT post, I promise). What about an origin in the same terrestrial dust cloud, into agglomerative substrates that protected the biomolecules and even to protobionts from solar radiation? (Cooper et all, 2001). I would never suggest an extraterrestrial origin of life on Earth, at least, never while the Earth has had a furious environment that could destroy the biomolecules and impede the last to build more complex structures. The temperature in the outer layer of the dust cloud could be higher than 10000°C given that the young Sun drove almost entirely the conditions on Earth, even if Earth was smoky and the Sun was dim. The only possibility for extraterrestrial seeds to survive would be at the poles of the planet, not darkened by the ringed dusty-spongy cloud.

  406. cba
    Posted Apr 24, 2008 at 12:32 PM | Permalink

    403 (Leif):

    you’re using 1363 +/- 45 rather than 1366 +/- 45. or if you’re using actual values then that is what it’s turning out to be, roughly speaking. That’s the difference between my 35 and your 36.

    The 1 and the 55 aren’t adjusted for either albedo or for the sphere/disk relationship. Obviously the 1 – your long term solar power variation – is going to be less than 0.25 W/m^2 and compared with 1.7 and 3.7 W/m^2 co2 forcing changes. The 55 – or using your 36 w/m^2 TOA becomes 9 W/m^2 over the sphere for the short term variation. The albedo variation of 6-8% was a nominal 24 w/m^2 TOA or 6 w/m^2 over the sphere.

    so here we have a current total of 1.6 w/m^2 at work now due to co2 with a promise of 3.6 W/m^2 when we double co2 from 1750. This is as compared to an annual variation of 9W/m^2, a solar cycle one one of

  407. Posted Apr 24, 2008 at 12:33 PM | Permalink

    ejmohr,

    Yes, I extrapolated. 4.5 million years for the age of the Solar System and an increase of 316 Wm^-2, which gives 7×10^-9 Wm^-2. However, considering some variables, the increase in SI per year since the origin of the Solar System, the number reduces to ~ 3.56 X 10-9 Wm-2. I admit that mine is a misleading extrapolation because the ISI is not always the same, that is, it changes from time to time and, probably, it depends of some cycles and anomalies in the core of the Sun and, probably (again), anomalies in the irradiative zone (sorry for the terms). The only way to know the conditions of the SI and its effects on Earth in a given moment is through proxies, and we could interpret proxies in many different ways.

  408. cba
    Posted Apr 24, 2008 at 12:42 PM | Permalink

    (Leif):

    as for the inappropriate choice of words, I still can’t get over it. “timescale of solar evolution” is very clear in meaning and no tsi change in that time frame is very wrong in mainstream astrophysical thought. Was it perhaps a radical trial balloon?

  409. cba
    Posted Apr 24, 2008 at 12:46 PM | Permalink

    Nasif,

    Another problem with that stuff is – where was the earth orbiting back then? Were we at 1 AU nominal back then? Or were we closer?

  410. Posted Apr 24, 2008 at 1:06 PM | Permalink

    402 (Nasif):

    I would like more your numbers than Lean’s numbers.

    Me too :-) Actually Lean was a co-author of the Wang et al. paper and she has long dropped her support for her old reconstruction. Here is a plot of several recent reconstructions:

    There are two reasons for my series being [slightly] different from Wang [and Lean] and Krivova [Solanki]:
    1) The values of TSI at solar minimum where there are no sunspots and no bright facular areas around the spots should be constant, except that several people [Wang, Lean, Solanki, the works...] invoke a mysterious ‘large-scale open magnetic flux’ as the source of additional energy flux raising TSI at minimum above what would correspond to no solar activity at all. Now, if there was some reason that the ‘open flux’ would vary with time, then we have an explanation of why the ‘bottom’ value of TSI at solar minimum could vary. The ‘open flux’ is supposedly dragged out by the solar wind into interplanetary space and makes up the ‘heliospheric magnetic field’, the HMF. The HMF interacts with the Earth’s magnetic field causing irregular wiggles of the magnetic needle known as ‘geomagnetic activity’, so by monitoring the amount of ‘wiggliness’ we can infer the value of HMF by comparing with direct spacecraft measurements of the HMF. Such monitoring goes back 165 years, so we can infer the HMF back that far. What we find is that the HMF at solar minimum does not [or only very little] vary from one minimum to the next, hence HMF at minimum did not vary, and hence the ‘open flux’ did not vary, and hence TSI did not vary. If you look at the graph you can see that the grey, brown, and blue curves all have a ‘rise’ from 1900 to 1960, so that you almost have a bimodal situation [for the blue curves - Lean's old and Hoyt & Schatten's are obsolete anyway] where the minima before 1900 were at one level and after 1960 at a [~0.5W/m2] higher level. The apparent increase of geomagnetic activity from 1900 to 1960 turns out to be mainly due to a mis-calibration of the geomagnetic ‘indices’ that are used to quantify the activity level combined with a general rise of the conductivity of the ionosphere due to the declining value of the Earth magnetic field. So, the rise of the base level from 1900-1960 is an artifact and is not real, hence the rationale for having a similar rise in the base level of TSI is moot. That gets us to the pink and red curves.
    2) The sunspot number [on which most of these reconstructions are based] underwent an artificial change ~1947 because of change of observer team. This change is about 20% in the sense that all values before 1947 are 20% too low. there were further jumps back in 1894 and 1849. This explains why the amplitudes of the individual cycles before 1947 for the red curve are bigger than for the blue. The pink curve was constructed by Dora Preminger and based on sunspot areas [going back to 1874] which do not have the artificial jump in 1947, and hence agrees very well with my red curve.
    So, there you have it. Be warned that powerful establishment forces disagree with me, so you have to make up your own mind.

  411. Posted Apr 24, 2008 at 1:35 PM | Permalink

    407 (Nasif): The reason the sun is getting brighter is not some weird changes in the various zones, but much simpler: start with a new Sun growing and contracting under the force of gravity, getting hotter and hotter at the center. At a certain point it is hot enough to fuse Hydrogen into Helium and generate additional heat that increases the outward pressure to counterbalance gravity and the Sun stops contracting. With time, the Hydrogen at the center is used up and the Sun shrinks a little again. That causes it to heat up some more and it now begins to fuse Hydrogen to Helium in a shell just outside the core, the net result is a slightly larger luminosity, and so it continues, the energy-producing shell moving steadily outward and the sun brightening etc. In the process the Sun also swells in size eventually possibly swallowing up the planet Mercury. All this is a very orderly and well-understood evolution.

  412. Posted Apr 24, 2008 at 1:44 PM | Permalink

    408 (cba): I know, but Enric [Palle] is not a native English speaker and I have discussed this with him some time ago. He does not mean billions of years. He means centuries. And if you know what the analysis is and how it is done you’ll see that that is the intended meaning. I am, though, emaling him so we can get from the horse’s mouth.

  413. cba
    Posted Apr 24, 2008 at 2:45 PM | Permalink

    410 (Leif):

    a vaguely associated question – is power production in the solar core right around 4 W/m^3? I think I either read that or calculated it once based on the standard solar model. If so, I guess it would seem that the variations of power production would be rather minimal for p & T variations so the smoothness of solar output would not have to depend on ‘mechanical filtering’ of any semi-stable power production.

  414. Chris Knight
    Posted Apr 24, 2008 at 3:49 PM | Permalink

    393 (Leif): Here are the AMSU-A temperature means for 21 km and 17 km scaled up so that the seasonal details can be seen.

    At 21 km the signal is a hybrid of that in the stratosphere above and the troposphere below, apparently heated from above and below.

    The 17 km plot is clearly showing the same signal as the troposphere, much attenuated.

    Noise is due mostly to missing data – note the February 29th kink in both plots.

  415. Posted Apr 24, 2008 at 3:55 PM | Permalink

    413 (cba): Let’s see, 90% of the energy is generated in a shell between 0.05 and 0.20 of the solar radius, thus a volume of V = 1.1E25 m3. The luminosity is L = 3.8E26 W, thus the energy generation rate is L*0.9/V = 31 W/m3, so the solar output would be very stable simply because the volume is so large, but I think it is the volume that is the determining factor rather than the Wattage, but educate me.

  416. Pat Keating
    Posted Apr 24, 2008 at 5:27 PM | Permalink

    381 Nasif
    I said “pedantic”, not “pathetic”. I would never call you pathetic, Nasif. Or were you joking with me?

  417. cba
    Posted Apr 24, 2008 at 9:35 PM | Permalink

    415 (Leif):

    you’re suggesting there that we’ve already done with the core center (or at least your source of reference is suggesting that) but that nothing else is going on except for hydrogen yet. I guess I was expecting that fusion was still going on at the center still. Anyway, it’s roughly within an order of magnitude (4 vs 31). While different fusion chains have significantly different rates, I expect that the proton proton rate predominant in the sun is highly dependent on T and on p. The fact that it is so impractically slow – or low power production density suggests to me that it’s a long way from much much faster conditions so it’s stable because of that, wheras if it were much closer, minor variations in p, T could seriously effect the rate and the star – which might filter down variations into small slow changes.

    Call it a predisposition, but I tend to think in terms associated with explosive chemical burning. For example a core collapse supernova has the normal explaination of pressure has no force to prevent crushing the core to neutron star densities plus a little bit – which then rebounds and (apparently provides a ‘spring loaded’ result on the rebound. I tend to think of that as a concusion wave pushing p and T into the realm of very rapid power production – propagating through the star, fusing massive amounts of h, he, …whatever, which perpetuates the concusion outward.

  418. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 24, 2008 at 11:01 PM | Permalink

    This contribution represents an attempt to treat the globe as a heterogeneous object rather than a sphere or a plane surface with little compositional variation.

    The top map above shows the distribution of cloud today. The second diagram shows actual temperatures in the tropical atmosphere up to 50km and the third the anomalies associated with that temperature distribution. The second and third diagrams relate to the latitudes 10°N to 10°S.

    There is a paradox associated with the tropics (defined for my purposes as 30°N to 30°S). In the tropics we find the greatest heat input, the warmest waters but the least cloud cover. Obviously heat input leads evaporation. Despite very high relative humidity little cloud forms except in particular areas. This is a product of a setup where, between 30°N and 30°S, the air is drawn in from higher latitudes and is warmed and humidified gradually and continuously as it travels.

    The trade wind rain shadow areas on the western side of the continents represent areas of gradually warming but relatively dry air that produces very low levels of cloud. These zones are marked with red ovals.

    In the Amazon, The Congo and South East Asia daily thunderstorm activity generates cloud in a region normally described at the Inter-tropical convergence zone. In Darwin people speak of ‘Hector the Convector’. Markedly high sea surface temperatures are thought to be associated with tropical cyclone (tornado) activity. Little of this activity has been noted in the summer season in Australia this year.

    Bands of cloud are associated with transfer of tropical air from areas of heavy thunderstorm activity towards the south-east and north-east. These areas of pole-wards moving air coming away from the ITCZ are marked with arrows. The direction of movement is counter to the trade winds and it occurs close to the surface. This is not an upper troposphere phenomenon.

    By virtue of pole-ward movement this stream of tropical air is led to cool below its dew point. Cloud often intensifies when the air mass moves across the coast.

    This pole-wards movement has been particularly noticeable during the current La Nina when the cloud area seems to have markedly expanded, particularly, so far as this observer is concerned, around the Australian region. Historically rainfall in Australia is closely associated with periods of increased cloudiness (big surprise) and La Nina events. Recently rainfall has occurred when low pressure troughs have formed down the east and west coasts sucking tropical air southwards. The inland has also benefited. Notice the cloud band in the map stretching from SE Asia across the driest part of the Australian continent. This is unusual. Western Australian wheat farmers are frenziedly planting wheat after an extraordinarily early and generous break to the winter season and in parts the added benefit of good soil moisture levels due to summer rain. South Australia, after a record heat wave, is still waiting for rain. It has been in a rain shadow with the continent to the north and has missed out on summer rain. This summer, Eastern Australia has in many places had record summer rainfall with very cool cloudy conditions up and down the East coast.

    Let’s consider what might happen if (due perhaps to increased albedo in the upper atmosphere due to a stalled ITCZ) the heat input into the tropics were to be reduced. A weakening of tropical thunderstorm activity would be associated with a weakening of the isobaric pressure gradients in the tropics and their extension across the land masses that occupy the tropical zone. This would account for the enhanced pole-ward movement of masses of tropical air that we see in La Nina years like the present. In this way the tropics would become relatively cloudier, accelerating the change in albedo already initiated.

    The key to this chain of events could be a net cooling of the upper troposphere above 500mb. A cooling and humidification of the atmosphere between 5km and 10km at latitudes 10°N to 10°S occurred in 1979. Notice the gradual disappearance of the positive temperature anomaly between 5 and 10km elevation as the La Nina has strengthened (lowest graph) over 1997.

    According to this scenario any part of the spectrum of solar radiation that produces heat when absorbed by the small amounts of water vapour in the upper troposphere could be the agent provocateur. Small amounts of water vapour could react to small changes in radiation.

    A demonstration of this process in action (in part) occurs in NH summer each year when heating land masses return warmth to the atmosphere resulting in a dramatic reduction in cloud cover (3% globally and more than 6% on a NH hemisphere basis) thereby generating temperatures in the NH lower troposphere that are 5K warmer than in the height of Southern Hemisphere summer. This occurs despite 90 Watts per square metre less radiation from the sun in July than in January. I want to make it plain that this occurs without the prior warming of the upper troposphere as postulated above. It is simply a reaction to warming land masses at a time of diminished irradiance.

    It is notable that in NH summers the atmosphere at 40-50 km cools. It is natural that the region 10°N and 10°S should experience maxima in the upper atmosphere at the equinoxes when the sun is directly overhead. The heavier maximum in March, April and May is frequent but by no means consistent. It is difficult to imagine how maxima might be generated at the top of the atmosphere over the equator in July-September given the 90 watt per metre reduction in irradiance in July by comparison with January. Global upper atmosphere temperatures away from the equator are at a marked seasonal low point in July-August. It seems therefore that temperature gradients from equator to pole in the upper atmosphere must be extreme in the latter half of the year. Is the anomaly in July-August (or the gradiaent from equator to pole) a marker for solar influence – perhaps a question to explore?

    At any rate, this thinking seems to me to offer promise as an explanation of the dynamics of surface temperature change on an inter-annual basis.

  419. Dennis Wingo
    Posted Apr 24, 2008 at 11:18 PM | Permalink

    (410) Leif

    I would like to get to the heart of the miscalibration. What is the technical basis for the miscalibration of the hardware used in the measurements and what is the nature of the miscalibration? What instrument was used during the time period where the miscalibration occured?

    Thanks

  420. Dennis Wingo
    Posted Apr 24, 2008 at 11:26 PM | Permalink

    (410) Leif

    rise of the conductivity of the ionosphere due to the declining value of the Earth magnetic field

    What exactly is the mechanism that increases the conductivity of the ionosphere with a declining magnetic field?

  421. Dennis Wingo
    Posted Apr 24, 2008 at 11:36 PM | Permalink

    (403)

    The W/m2 numbers: My calculation goes like this:
    January: TSI=1408, A=0.317 reflected, 1-A=0.683 absorbed. TSI*(1-A)[Jan]= 962 W/m2
    July: TSI=1317, A=0.297 reflected, 1-A=0.703 absorbed. TSI*(1-A)[Jul] = 926 W/m2
    TSI[Jan]-TSI[Jul]=91 W/m2; TSI*(1-A)[Jan]-TSI(1-A)[Jul]=962-926=36 W/m2
    Now before we begin to compare with other numbers there is the divisor of 4 because the Earth is round.

    Leif

    These numbers above are strongly altitude and water vapor absorbing dependent. I actually look at this data fairly often and in Las Vegas the University of Nevada Los Vegas has a station whereby the TSI goes well over 1000 W/m2 and only rarely goes as low as 926.

    In driving around my solar power generating system for two years I noticed that in the west in the dry and higher altitudes that the output of my solar panels is as much as 29% higher than at 500 feet in Alabama.

    In my experience TSI at the surface of the earth is strongly dependent on the amount of water vapor in the air and the altitude and that your number is not generally representative of the real TSI at the surface of the Earth.

  422. Posted Apr 25, 2008 at 12:32 AM | Permalink

    410 (Leif)
    “Here is a plot of several recent reconstructions”
    Do you have a link to the data?

  423. maksimovich
    Posted Apr 25, 2008 at 12:41 AM | Permalink

    re 395 (leif):

    I don’t like their use of percentages to characterize changes. Their 10% corresponds to a change of 0.1*0.3 = 0.03, of same order of magnitude as the Jan-Jul difference.

    An albedo change of 0.003 translates into a radiative forcing of about 1 W/m2, or a global warming(cooling) of approximately 0.5C Zachos( 2005)

  424. Pete
    Posted Apr 25, 2008 at 2:05 AM | Permalink

    394(Leif)

    We discussed the Earthshine project a few months ago. They are currently in the process of expanding the monitoring network as I recall.

    Now the real question, from your bringing this up, is from the last sentence in your posting taken from the paper:

    “Thus, a possible Sun–albedo link, would have the potential to produce large climate effects without the need for significant excursions in solar irradiance. These could provide an explanation for the apparently large climate response to apparently small solar changes, as well as how the 11/22 year solar cycle is imprinted on Earth.”

    Seems an obvious question really, but what is the “Sun-albedo” link!? :) An even more obvious question would be is there any link to CR’s to the Cloud Cover in your graph. If we can eliminate CR’s, then what is left?

  425. EW
    Posted Apr 25, 2008 at 4:49 AM | Permalink

    422(Hans)

    It is at Leif’s site as TSI (Reconstructions).xls

    http://www.leif.org/research/

  426. Posted Apr 25, 2008 at 5:41 AM | Permalink

    417 (cba): Inside of 0.01 solar radius there is simply no hydrogen left, so no energy generation. The production rate is VERY sensitive to temperature and to density (grows as T^4.5 or so for the [dominant] p-p chain and even T^20 for the CN-chain). So, the sun is VERY stable.

    419 (Dennis):

    I would like to get to the heart of the miscalibration. What is the technical basis for the miscalibration of the hardware used in the measurements and what is the nature of the miscalibration? What instrument was used during the time period where the miscalibration occured?

    This is a very large subject. At its root is something called the aa-index, which basically is a measure of the amplitude of the variation in the geomagnetic field brought about by the solar wind over an interval of 3 hours. The variation that is observed has two sources: 1) the solar wind, and 2) dynamo currents in the ionosphere controled by solar FUV. The trick is to separate the two. This is difficult and was not done correctly in the past. The measurements go back to 1868. Two antipodal stations were used, Greenwich and Melbourne. The instruments have changed greatly over time, but are not the controling factor as even back in 1840 they were good enough for this purpose. The definitive paper on the ‘miscalibration’ is ‘Interhourly variability index of geomagnetic activity and its use in deriving the long-term variation of solar wind speed’ by Leif Svalgaard and Edward W. Cliver in JOURNAL OF GEOPHYSICAL RESEARCH, VOL. 112, A10111, doi:10.1029/2007JA012437, 2007.
    You can find this at my website http://www.leif.org/research
    Click on: Interhourly variability index of geomagnetic activity.pdf (IHV-Index Definition, JGR 2007)
    and on: Analysis of K=0 and 1 for aa and NGK.pdf (Work in progress, 2007)
    and on: Reply to Lockwood’s IDV Comment.pdf
    Our analysis is based on my research notes ‘No Doubling.pdf (of Sun’s open magnetic flux; unpublished manuscript 2002)’ also on the website, near the bottom.

    420 (Dennis):

    What exactly is the mechanism that increases the conductivity of the ionosphere with a declining magnetic field?

    Another big issue. The conductivity is controled by the ‘mobility’ of the charges. If the medium is pervaded by a vertical magnetic field, then the charges begin to gyrate around the field lines instead of moving freely. This decreases their mobility and thus also the conductivity.

    421 (Dennis):

    In my experience TSI at the surface of the earth is strongly dependent on the amount of water vapor in the air and the altitude and that your number is not generally representative of the real TSI at the surface of the Earth.

    Sure. My numbers were meant as global averages. When I lived on top of the Greenland Ice Cap I could also complain that ‘in my experience the temperature quoted for the global average was not representative of the real temperature’.

    422 (Hans):

    “Here is a plot of several recent reconstructions” Do you have a link to the data?

    You can find this at my website http://www.leif.org/research
    Click on: TSI (Reconstructions).xls (TSI Reconstructions 1700-present, 2008) [as text, as PDF] in the format you wish.

    423 (maks…): And?

    424 (Pete):

    Seems an obvious question really, but what is the “Sun-albedo” link!? :) An even more obvious question would be is there any link to CR’s to the Cloud Cover in your graph. If we can eliminate CR’s, then what is left?

    you tell me! I’m interested. As a question it is great, as a scientific argument it is no good. The argument from ignorance, also known as argumentum ad ignorantiam (“appeal to ignorance”) or argument by lack of imagination, is a logical fallacy in which it is claimed that a premise is true only because it has not been proven false or is only false because it has not been proven true.

  427. Posted Apr 25, 2008 at 6:48 AM | Permalink

    426,419 (me,Dennis): As the subject is large, I’ll here just give the crux of the argument. This plot shows a measure of geomagnetic activity for a period in 1901 and a period in 2007 [both solar minimum years]

    The red curves are using the aa-index [for Greenwich and its replacement station Hartland in the UK] and the blue are the same measure derived [by different observers for a different station, Potsdam and its replacement station Niemegk in Germany]. Note how the red curve in the top panel [for year 1901] is systematically below the blue for low activity {the peaks are ok}, while that is not the same for the modern data.

  428. cba
    Posted Apr 25, 2008 at 6:50 AM | Permalink

    is a link to a ‘scientific news’ article talking about some research on the big ice melt of recent memory. It talks of a 16% reduction in clouds in the arctic permitting a foot of ice to be melted along with strong winds nd some sea warming.

    423 (Maksimovich):

    that 2005 paper of Zachos indicating 0.5 K variations per 0.003 or 1 w/m^2 would seem to be grossly over the top. Annual variations of 9W/m^2 due to orbit and multiyear changes of 0.02 to 0.03 albedo variation have been observed that relate to an estimated forcing of 6W/m^2. I haven’t seen anyone gleefully shouting we’ve just warmed by 3 degrees in the last 20 years or that summer time in the SH averages 5 degrees warmer than in the NH.

    There’s too much variation going on and too many w/m^2 involved for rather little T contribution for there to be ultrahigh sensitivity.

  429. EW
    Posted Apr 25, 2008 at 7:11 AM | Permalink

    I wonder what moves the jet streams polewards – if we have warmer temperatures due to jet stream moving or the other way ’round… The author of the study says

    “At this point we can’t say for sure that this is the result of global warming, but I think it is,” says Caldeira. “I would bet that the trend in the jet streams’ positions will continue. It is something I’d put my money on.”

    So bet would they, but apparently no data to support it.

  430. Posted Apr 25, 2008 at 7:17 AM | Permalink

    429 (EW): “At this point we can’t say for sure that this is the result of global warming, but I think it is,” says Caldeira. “I would bet that the trend in the jet streams’ positions will continue. It is something I’d put my money on.”

    There is the implied assumption that Global Warming will continue.

  431. Posted Apr 25, 2008 at 8:57 AM | Permalink

    416

    Pat… Please, I would never joke with you if you don’t joke with me. It was my mistake when writting my message. I apologize, but… What’s better… pathetic or pedantic?

  432. Posted Apr 25, 2008 at 9:06 AM | Permalink

    431 (Nasif,P
    at): OT! Enough. move on.

  433. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Apr 25, 2008 at 9:15 AM | Permalink

    #431 Nasif:

    I’d rather be a pedant than a pathogen. :)

    #424 Pete:

    “If we can eliminate CR’s, then what is left?”

    Something else.

  434. Posted Apr 25, 2008 at 9:19 AM | Permalink

    # 410 and 411

    Leif,

    First of all, I apologize for the delay in answering your posts. I’m preparing a topic on the infestations of lice and fleas in schools for my radio-program tomorrow.

    I saw this stuff in my very brief class of astrophysics, you know, accretion disks, gas collapsing, algorithms, etc., thus we could say the growth of a star is basic knowledge. I would like to have a methodology for assessing your numbers. I’ll tell you why… Two years ago I wrote an article about the increase of Solar Radiation and global warming based on the numbers of Lean-Wang. If your work is plausible, and I’m seeing it is more realistic and accurate than the previous plots from other scientists, then I have to write an article for making some profound amendments to my previous articles. This would be embarrassing to me, but I have a preference for teaching consistent theories or those reviews that are closer to the reality than other earlier investigations.

  435. Posted Apr 25, 2008 at 9:41 AM | Permalink

    Leif,

    For example, it is easier for me to evaluate the effect of gravitational oscillations on the ocean currents and the weakening of tradewinds during ENSO without implying the human hand. If we have the hard charge of Solar Irradiance out of proportions, as it is in the Lean-Wang reconstruction, we would have more uncertainties than the standard. I told you this because I have confronted the problem along one of my lectures, when a physicist criticized heatedly one of my graphs on the similarities between the plot of TA and ISI (or TSI). The worst is that I knew he was correct given that I’ve seen the incongruence before. If your reconstruction is falsified, then my problems with comparisons will be blown out.

  436. Posted Apr 25, 2008 at 9:57 AM | Permalink

    Sam… Leif reprimanded to me for being OT and I’ve promised I will never be OT. However, me also. ;)

    Leif,

    The problem with the assessment was that the minimums of the ISI produced negative anomalies of the TA that didn’t agree with the observed negative anomalies. I knew of this incongruence in my graph; however, in the meanwhile I was looking for -without success- an intrinsic cause that solved the incongruence. With your numbers the incongruence disappears mechanically.

  437. Posted Apr 25, 2008 at 11:52 AM | Permalink

    436 (Nasif):

    With your numbers the incongruence disappears mechanically.

    What more do you need? :-) If you look at the ‘trend’ in the TSI reconstructions, from Hoyt & Schatten, to Lean, to Wang and Lean (!), to Krivova, to Premminger, and to me, it is clear that the ‘consensus’ a decade or more back of significant change has now given way to a ‘consensus’ of no change (me and Dora Preminger) or very little change (the rest).

  438. Posted Apr 25, 2008 at 12:13 PM | Permalink

    # 437

    Leif,

    Well… I need your numbers and methodology, thus I can get the variability and plot it with the TA data together. Of course, if you wish to share them with me. If it has been published in your website, please give me a link. Your site is large and I live in lazy town….

  439. Posted Apr 25, 2008 at 12:23 PM | Permalink

    434 (Nasif):

    I would like to have a methodology for assessing your numbers.

    On my website http://www.leif.org/research are re- and preprints of various papers where I try to make my case. The basic premise is that the sunspot as we know it is wrongly calibrated. To help you pick out the relevant papers, here is a list [oldest first].

    CAWSES – Sunspots.pdf (CAWSES Newsletter, vol 4, issue 1, 2007)
    AGU Spring 2007 SH54B-02.pdf (Calibrating Sunspot Numbers Using the Magnetic Needle)
    SSN Validation-Reconstruction (Cliver).ppt (Talk by Ed Cliver at Perugia, 2007 ( PDF-version ))
    CAWSES – IMF, EUV, TSI.pdf ( CAWSES Newsletter: vol 4, issue 2, 2007)
    De maculis in Sole observatis.pdf (Showing that Waldmeier introduced a jump in Rz, 2007)
    SH13A-1109-F2007.pdf (Geomagnetic Underpinning: Wolf’s Sunspot Number; AGU Fall 2007)
    GC31B-0351-F2007.pdf ((No?)Century-scale Secular Variation in HMF, EUV, or TSI; AGU Fall 2007)
    TSI From McCracken HMF.pdf (TSI Reconstruction 1428-2005, Santa Fe, SORCE 2008)
    Seminar-LMSAL.pdf (Seminar at LMSAL, 2008)

    If you [or anybody else] have specific questions of problems with any of this, please feel free to bring them up here in this forum.

  440. Posted Apr 25, 2008 at 12:46 PM | Permalink

    # 409

    cba,

    Perhaps the Earth was closer to the Sun than today. We have to consider that the Earth was almost a coarse fireball covered by an enraged cloud of dust, gases, ice, etc. What is pleasant in Leif’s explanation is that the origin of life would be further plausible in agglomerative substrates forming a cloud bombarded by not so high-density solar energy than in a world where the Sun was capable of obliterating every single attempt of synthesis of biomolecules. It would be nice if I can reconcile my theory on the origin of life with Leif’s theory. Of course, I won’t invite to Leif to the party… I’m joking ;)

  441. Posted Apr 25, 2008 at 12:48 PM | Permalink

    # 439

    Leif,

    (OT) Thanks a lot. :)

  442. Posted Apr 25, 2008 at 1:19 PM | Permalink

    441 (Nasif): in the spirit of Open Archive, my website now has an entry [near the bottom] called ‘Sub-directory analysis/list.txt’, clinking here will show a list [I'll make that clicable too later] of the ‘raw’ data and ruminations that are behind my analysis. You can copy and paste the filenames onto the end of http://www.leif.org/research/analysis to download the file.

  443. Posted Apr 25, 2008 at 1:55 PM | Permalink

    442 (me): it ws such a pain to copy/paste, so the entries are now clickable. Warning: they are just ‘notes’ and as I also live in lazy town, the annotation – such as it is – is just barely enough to remind me of what the data is.

  444. Posted Apr 25, 2008 at 2:28 PM | Permalink

    Leif,

    I agree… it was a pain. I just started seeing the data and it’s amazing. I made a rough calculus on the difference of possible TA between the TSI in 1800.5 from your data and from Lean’s data in the same year… Wow! There is a difference of 1.1135 K! I must continue with this exercise! Thank you so much, Leif; to be honest, I hadn’t appreciated the value of your work.

  445. lgl
    Posted Apr 25, 2008 at 2:47 PM | Permalink

    #398
    Even more fun to flip the Cumulus cloud-cover and compare to ocean temperature

  446. Dennis Wingo
    Posted Apr 25, 2008 at 6:53 PM | Permalink

    (424) Pete

    We discussed the Earthshine project a few months ago. They are currently in the process of expanding the monitoring network as I recall.

    Can you get in touch with me? The USAF Academy in Colorado has a great telescope that could be put into service to help expand the network and they have indicated an interest in doing so.

    wingodnspam@earthlink.net

  447. Dennis Wingo
    Posted Apr 25, 2008 at 7:05 PM | Permalink

    (427)

    Leif

    I would like to see a more comparable set of charts. If you look carefully at the graphed data you will see that at the minimums that there is still a systematic spread between the mins at the stations, it is just that the minimums are much less frequent.

    As an engineer with a science background I would like to see an explanation of the calibration difference. In looking at the graph the explanation has to go beyond a calibration error as if the system has a similar response at higher flux levels that implies that there is a non linearity in the amplification system as well. This should be testable on the hardware. Alternately has anyone actually tested the existing hardware in a manner as to explain these differences?

    I have seen instances recently (Frolich’s paper on the TSI from SOHO for example) that ignored a broken calibration device in one and not the other than then went on to draw some conclusions that was not consistent with the state of the hardware.

  448. Posted Apr 25, 2008 at 7:49 PM | Permalink

    447 (Dennis):

    I would like to see a more comparable set of charts

    Dennis, back in 426 I gave you a whole bunch of papers to go look at. They total several hundred pages. You can understand that I can not show every single one here.

    I would like to see an explanation of the calibration difference

    Wouldn’t we all. First, you have to get over the hardware fixation. This is a wetware problem. It is all explained in excruciating detail [explains, perhaps, why you don't take the trouble to look at it :-) ] in the references I gave. It is not a hardware problem. It is not a hardware problem. It is not a hardware problem. It is not a hardware problem.

    The recording instrument produces a curve that shows from second to second [or minute to minute on older recorders, or hour to hour on VERY old recorders {the human eye}] throughout the 24-hour day what the value of the geomagnetic field [actually, one curve for each of the three components of the vector field] is.
    Here is an example [from Kakioka in Japan]:

    Actually what is shown are the records for five days. The first is VERY quiet [the curves are smooth], then as time goes on there are more and more wiggles on the curves: this is called geomagnetic activity. You can probably see that the ‘quiet’ day curve kind of underlies the disturbed days, i.e. is always present. However, the underlying ‘quiet’ curve is not constant from day to day [if it were, things would be trivial and we would not have this discussion]. The quit day [or better the 'regular'] variation is due to the magnetic effect of currents in the E-layer. Currents generated by the charges blowing [actually thermal winds and also tides - both solar and lunar] across magnetic field lines [dynamo action]. These winds change from day to day. It is not quite clear why, but one suggestion is planetary waves reaching all the way up into the ionosphere. In addition, the number of charged particles is controlled by solar FUV that changes from day to day [or even from minute to minute during a solar flare, which causes a very distinctive little 'hook' {called a 'crochet'} in the curve]. We now define the amplitude of geomagnetic activity as the absolute value of the difference between the actual curve and the regular curve. So far, no problem. Everything clear? I would like a confirmation, please, of this before I continue.

  449. Posted Apr 25, 2008 at 8:15 PM | Permalink

    446 (Dennis): I was sending you an email, but got this back:
    This is an automatically generated Delivery Status Notification

    Delivery to the following recipient failed permanently:

    wingodn@earthlink.net

    Technical details of permanent failure:
    PERM_FAILURE: Gmail tried to deliver your message, but it was rejected by the recipient domain. The error that the other server returned was: 550 550 wingodn@earthlink.net…User unknown. We recommend contacting the other email provider for further information about the cause of this error. Thanks for your continued support. (state 14)

  450. Dennis Wingo
    Posted Apr 25, 2008 at 9:16 PM | Permalink

    448

    Sorry, I promise to go look at the references. It may take a few days as my writing is picking up again on space related issues.

    Thanks for the references though. I am interested in the hardware in that I like to know what is going on with the actual instruments involved. It has been my experience that scientists a hundred years ago were extremely careful in their work and gave inordinate attention to getting the details right. A lesson for many in the current generation.

  451. Posted Apr 25, 2008 at 9:18 PM | Permalink

    450 (Dennis): Actually,there is value for others in this shorter version here online. So I will ask you if you will help me to carry that on a bit… Is my explanation clear so far?

  452. Dennis Wingo
    Posted Apr 25, 2008 at 9:27 PM | Permalink

    (448) Leif

    Thanks for that explanation and I do follow it as my first hardware experiences were following the sporadic E propagation just before and during the minimum of cycle 20. Used to drive my mother crazy listening to WWV to get the geomagnetic reports every hour. Bong bong bong bong…… Still hear that tick.

    I also have a pretty good understanding of the magnetic field vectors as I was doing work with tethers, including electrodynamic tethers during the 1990’s with NASA, including the TSS-1 and 1R missions. That is why the questions about E layer conduction. Theoretically this can be measured at the magnetic equator where the north and east field vectors are minimized. I even have detailed field plots that come from some early NASA missions during the 60’s for comparison with today’s numbers. If conduction is enhanced due to reductions in the overall field would this not tend to increase the strength as well as incidence of auroras? Increased conduction should have an impact on the vertical lightning which should impact in some manner weather. I still think that this ionosphere/troposphere electrical connection has not been investigated for its role in climate. The Compton Gamma Ray Explorer in the 90’s recorded many soft gamma ray bursts from this source. That is a huge amount of energy transferred between the ionosphere and the lower atmosphere.

    I wish I got paid to investigate this stuff, I do love solar/terrestrial physics!

  453. Posted Apr 25, 2008 at 10:21 PM | Permalink

    451 (Dennis): Good, now we can continue. I ended with:
    We now define the amplitude of geomagnetic activity as the absolute value of the difference between the actual curve and the regular curve.

    And here is the problem. Since the ‘regular’ curve varies from day to day, how do we know what it is? It is easy on the first day, and on the second day [note the different amplitudes of the regular curves], but on the 3rd, 4th, and 5th it is a lot harder. The solution is a human observer. This person knows the curves. Have looked at hundreds or even thousands. So he draws in with a light hand what he thinks the regular curve should be for these disturbed days. And that is the rub. Because now the activity measure becomes a ‘subjective’ thing. It is not as bad as it sounds, because very good observers usually agree closely in their guessing of the curves. The problem is that not all observers are good. This is not the biggest problem. The biggest problem is that observers change over time, they die or retire. So each time you have a new observer [and over 150 years you have many] the calibration jumps. Of course, one tries to cross-compare and all that, but it is not easy. In modern times, most observatories have some form of computerized method of doing this automatically, but the algorithms are not as good as the human observers, but at least they can be made consistent over time [if you can stop the programmers from 'improving' the code].
    Experience has shown that a good interval over which to measure is three hours. So the observer assigns an index value to each 3-hour interval. When activity is very high it doesn’t really matter to measure it very precisely, what does it matter if the amplitude is 666 nT or 676 nT [nT=nanoTesla, the Earth's field is about 60,000 nT]? But when the wiggles are small [e.g. of the order of 10 nT or less] then precision matters. The way the observer copes with this is to assign a quasi-logarithmic index value; a kind of ‘Richter’-scale, from 1 [low] to 9 [high]. A value of 1 is given to wiggles between 5 and 10 nT, 2 to wiggles between 10 and 20 nT, 3 to between 20 and 40 nT, etc, doubling up for each step. For the highest steps, the growth is a bit less than doubling, so the scale is not strictly logarithmic. And wiggles less than 5 nT are assigned the index value 0. These index values are called K-values after the German word for ‘index’ [Kennziffer] because the scheme was invented by the German geophysicist Julies Bartels in the 1930s.
    Here is a compilation of activity values for the time of the above Figure. Look in the lower right-hand corner:

    There you can see the index graph for 2Apr, 3Apr, 4, 5 [and 6 is off the graph]. The K-values are, in fact: 00000000 00011100 00012332 21133423 23333221
    The 3-hour interval with K=4 had a wiggle between 40 and 70 nT. In this way we obtain a compact and reasonable measure. The real problem is not the higher K-values, but K=0 and K=1. For these the observer has to be correct in guessing the regular variation to within a couple of nT, which is very hard. Just look at the curves and try for yourself. And it is there that we have discovered inhomogeneities in the old ‘scalings’ of K-values.

    So, the reconstruction of TSI comes down to some observer looking at 100 year old records and trying to guess what the ‘regular’ variation was.

  454. Posted Apr 25, 2008 at 10:37 PM | Permalink

    452 (Dennis): .

    If conduction is enhanced due to reductions in the overall field would this not tend to increase the strength as well as incidence of auroras?

    Yes, the problem is that our models are not good enough for telling us how much. This is an interesting research problem that for some reason nobody wants to touch.

  455. maksimovich
    Posted Apr 25, 2008 at 11:26 PM | Permalink

    452 (Dennis)

    Increased conduction should have an impact on the vertical lightning which should impact in some manner weather. I still think that this ionosphere/troposphere electrical connection has not been investigated for its role in climate.

    How about how a lightening stroke in North America effects the scatter amplitude in Antarctica(no butterflies)

    In order to better understand how lightning leads to WEP we examined a series of case study days where Trimpis observed at Faraday (65.3°S, 64.3°W, L = 2.5) could be directly linked to lightning in North America (detected by the NLDN). Trimpi at Faraday are strongly associated with lightning activity around 34°N, 76°W, and hence at the footprint of L≈2 flux tubes.

    http://www.physics.otago.ac.nz/space/AARDDVARK_homepage.htm

  456. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 26, 2008 at 2:03 AM | Permalink


    Depicted in this collage (slightly distorted in file conversion) is the most severe El Nino event of the last three solar cycles.

    The apparent data discontinuity in March 2000 affecting the highest part of the stratosphere is of concern. But, if this is the best data we have, I will press on.

    An anomaly of 1.31°C was achieved in the tropical lower troposphere at the height of the El Nino event in February 1998. This is almost double the highest anomaly seen since that time. (0.68°C in February 2005).

    In April 1997, during the La Nina that frequently prevails at solar minimum, the UAH temperature anomaly in the lower troposphere fell to minus 0.4°C, a figure not to appear again until March 2000. The record low anomaly since 1979 stands at minus 0.64C from December 1988. February 2008 reached minus 0.34°C and March 2008 minus 0.5°C. April 2008 may establish a new low point. We will know in a few days.

    What are the features of this great El Nino event?
    1. It occurred at years end when TSI is at a maximum due to the orbital effect (extra 90 Watts per squaremetre) and the Southern Hemisphere oceans are most illuminated. So, it was very geo-effective.
    2. El Nino events in the Pacific are associated with a marked rise in tropical sea surface temperatures around the entire globe. It is hard to imagine how people could conceive of that this phenomenon could be due to an ‘internal oscillation of the climate system’. Warm waters do not up-well out of the deep. The atmosphere can not pass heat down to the oceans.
    3. Marked warming at the 40-50 km level (first tier graphic) of the upper stratosphere is co-incident with the period of strongest warming at the 5Km to 10Km level in the upper troposphere (second tier graphic) and also the lower troposphere (third tier graphic). Enhanced solar radiation from the sun due to the upswing in the solar cycle can be the only source of extra warmth for the upper stratosphere. Associated sunspot activity is shown in the third tier. The latter provides part of the 1 watt variation due to the solar cycle in action. I will leave it to the mathematicians to work out the heat response to this part of a watt at the top of the stratosphere and to discover whether it is accounted for via measured change in irradiance or involves amplification via ‘other’ possible influences.
    4. The period where the UAH Lower troposphere anomaly is above zero is marked with a dashed orange line and it can be seen that the upper and lower troposphere warming events are co-incident. Arguably this heating anomaly is due to some particular spectra, UVA, UVB, or infrared interacting with water vapour. As relative humidity falls with rising temperature the upper layer would become more transparent. This in turn would enhance penetration of warming irradiation into the lower troposphere tending to reduce cloud cover there. Returning long wave radiation will in turn heat the lower troposphere further reducing cloud cover. This is a multi tiered mechanism.
    5. A slight cooling in the lower stratosphere, about the tropopause level, is probably associated with a humidification of the stratosphere due to penetration by plumes of moist air during convective episodes. If this reduces ozone concentration it should enhance UVA and UVB penetration of the troposphere. Notably, this cooling of the lower stratosphere became more marked after 1998 but has diminished since January 2007. This adds another tier to the mechanism.
    6. The extent of the very cold zone coloured white grows at years end due to the peak in irradiance in January. This is due to the strength of convection within the troposphere. No heat from above could find its way back to the troposphere via radiation or conduction through this very cold layer.
    7. The SOI index leads the temperature series by a few months and collapses at the time of peak warming in the lower troposphere. This collapse in the SOI points to a collapse in irradiance effects on surface temperature that is very probably associated with increasing cloud cover in Tahiti by comparison with Darwin. The effect could be local and is also observed to be variable. The SOI index usually leads tropical surface and LT temperature change by a couple of months. For lesser events it seems to track temperature change very well.
    8. Surface anomalies (grey line in third tier) appear to be a damped version of LT anomalies, jumping up at the same time as LT anomalies but with a long tail consistent with heat retention by the oceans. It is not conceivable therefore that all the warming in the troposphere could be driven by that at the surface.

    The evidence that ENSO is driven by solar influences continues to accumulate. In Economics the JM Keynes pointed to multiplier and accelerator effects of new spending on GNP. It appears that temperature responses at the Earths surface are directly associated with tiny changes in short wave radiation associated with sunspot activity. The medium of inflation of the temperature response at the surface is, without a shadow of a doubt, cloud cover.

    Roy Spencer, who can talk the talk of the modellers, has recently demonstrated that ‘internal oscillations of the climate system’ can produce the warming cycle that has been experienced since 1976. In my view, ‘internal oscillations’ should be seen as unphysical, but it is good to attack the modelling warmers using their own tools without at the same time challenging their basic belief system. Seems to me that Roy is a good climatologist and a great commentator. In addition he has a fine range of diplomatic and political skills.

  457. Chris Knight
    Posted Apr 26, 2008 at 6:46 AM | Permalink

    453 (Leif) The “wetware” problem seems an ideal application for a neural net approach.
    (449 I think the n before the @ is part of the “nspam” part :))

  458. Posted Apr 26, 2008 at 7:33 AM | Permalink

    456 (Erl): Before you try to ‘explain’ how solar activity drives ENSO, you must have a clear understanding of what El Niño actually is. I’ll try here to give an outline of the El Niño phenomenon, although if you google ‘El Nino Temperature’ you’ll find a zillion better explanations.
    1) What starts an El Niño: Normally, a strong wind blows from east to west along the equator in the Pacific. This pushes on the ocean water and makes it pile up [by about 0.5m] in the Western Pacific. In the Eastern Pacific, deeper water (which is colder than the sun-warmed surface water) gets pulled up from below to replace the water pushed west. So, the usual situation is warm water (about 30C) in the west, cold (about 22C) in the east. If the winds pushing the water around get weaker, some of the warm water piled up in the west slumps back down to the east, and not as much cold water gets pulled up from below. Both these tend to make the water in the Eastern Pacific warmer: and you have the start of an El Niño. The warmer ocean then affects the winds, making them weaker. When the winds get weaker, the ocean gets warmer, which makes the winds get weaker, which makes the ocean get warmer and you have a positive feedback loop, and this is what makes an El Niño grow. So, nobody is saying that ‘warm water wells up from below’. The warm water in an El Niño is a surface flow. It is a special case of what is called a Kelvin wave. When the matter at the equator moves to the east, any deviation toward the north is brought back toward the equator because the Coriolis force acts to the right of the direction of motion in the Northern Hemisphere, and any deviation to the south is brought back toward the equator because the Coriolis force acts to the left of the direction of motion in the Southern Hemisphere. For motion toward the west, the Coriolis force does not turn northward or southward deviations back toward the equator. Therefore, equatorial Kelvin waves [both in the air and in the ocean] only happen for eastward flows, transmitting changes in conditions in the Western Pacific to the Eastern Pacific.
    2) What stops an El Niño: When an El Niño starts in the middle of the Pacific, it creates Rossby waves that drift slowly [100 times slower than walking speed] towards Asia. After several months, they finally get near the coast and reflect back. The changes in interior ocean temperature that these waves carry with it cancel out the original temperature changes that made the El Niño in the first place. In an oceanic Rossby wave, the top 100 meters of the ocean move one way, while the lower part, starting at 100 meters and going on down, will be slowly moving the other way. The whole process takes about a year to play out, starting half a year before the peak of the event. So, the initial weakening of the winds [which could be caused by a change of temperature gradient] takes place long before the peak.

    This is the phenomenon that should be explained. And to return to our method of investigation, let me ask if we can agree to the above picture? If not, what specifically is the disagreement?

  459. Posted Apr 26, 2008 at 8:03 AM | Permalink

    457 (Chris):

    The “wetware” problem seems an ideal application for a neural net approach.

    It is not for several reasons: 1st, the data is not digital before ~1975; 2nd, neural nets impart no physical understanding; 3rd, people have tried with no joy.

    A promising approach [not operational yet] is to compute every minute or so the power spectrum as function of frequency and plot those in 2D as a function of time [the middle panel]:

    Analysis of the spectra can then isolate the various ‘kinds of wiggles’. This is on-going, so no big discussion, please, on power spectra, wavelets, FFT, etc.

  460. Posted Apr 26, 2008 at 8:30 AM | Permalink

    450 (Dennis):

    I am interested in the hardware in that I like to know what is going on with the actual instruments involved. It has been my experience that scientists a hundred years ago were extremely careful in their work and gave inordinate attention to getting the details right. A lesson for many in the current generation.

    The instruments were invented [or improved] by Gauss in the 1830s and further improved a few years later with self-recording hardware. The instruments are simple: suspend a tiny magnetic on a thread, mount a small mirror on the magnet [or just polish a piece of the magnet], shine a light at the mirror; if the magnet wiggles, the mirror wiggles too and the reflected beam moves, place a rotating drum covered with photographic paper some 10 meters away and record the [magnified by the distance] movements of the beam. That’s all. Works everywhere, easy to set up, nothing to break [except the thread - easily repaired]. I have myself set up such instruments in an igloo on the Greenland Ice Cap at -50C. No problem. But, of course, there are always details: ice crystals growing on the mirror [in my case], fungi growing on the thread in the tropics, or a famous case at Colaba in India around 1875, where a spider had gotten into the instrument case and used one end of the magnet to anchor her web [I guess every time there was magnetic activity she thought dinner was served].

    gave inordinate attention: perhaps just drop ‘inordinate’. That is the way it should be, but, as you point out, rare today.

  461. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 26, 2008 at 8:55 AM | Permalink

    459 (Leif)
    Thanks for your comment. It suggests that you are beginning to take the argument seriously.

    I am very familiar with all the stuff that you describe. The long and the short of it is that the heating event that has come to be called the ENSO phenomenon is global in extent; it affects all oceans in the tropics. It involves a massive change in the temperature of the tropical oceans and ultimately the oceans outside the tropics. The theory that you describe makes no mention of this very important fact. It is this fact that makes the discussion of ENSO so relevant to the topic of climate change. All the sophistry about Kelvin waves and the coriolis force can not conceal the fact that the cause of the ENSO phenomenon is freely acknowledged by climate science practitioners to be unknown. Ditto for the PDO.

    Yes the Pacific sees the greatest change in temperatures because the waters near the Galapagos Islands start off colder than anywhere else at this latitude due to the Benguala (Peru) current sweeping up from Antarctica and the California current coming down from Alaska. There are two very large zones to the west of the Americas where the air is very dry (very high mountains to the East) where sea surfaces can be rapidly warmed and the surface waters of these cold currents can be very much affected. But, the warmed waters are only skin deep here. Sure enough, if the wind blows from the west it will prevent the surface waters travelling westwards as they normally do. So, you see spectacular differences that are not seen elsewhere around the globe.

    But, none of this local stuff is really relevant to the question of warming and cooling across all low latitudes. What happens in the Pacific is just an extreme manifestation (and a superficial one) of what is happening elsewhere.

    When I put the data together my focus is the globe, not the Pacific.

    Let’s not waste time on this sort of distraction. We are dealing with a major flux of energy into and out of the tropical oceans that changes the temperature of the globe. Let’s face up to that. When the data comes in from the ARGO buoys we will be able to quantify that change properly. Meanwhile, what we have is sea surface temperatures, land surface temperatures and those in the atmosphere. It’s the sea that has the heat exchange capacity and it is the sea that can store and transfer warmth. Let’s acknowledge too that it is just the high latitudes of the Northern Hemisphere that has warmed and it is those same latitudes that are showing the extreme cooling that we are currently witnessing. How will another three weeks of very cold weather affect the prospects for this year’s corn crop? How are the Canadian wheat growers feeling about their prospects for this year? Has all the snow melted yet and gone down the Mississippi?

  462. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 26, 2008 at 9:13 AM | Permalink

    For anyone interested in atmospheric circulation, cloud behaviour and the influence of cloud in the tropics might I recommend a look at http://www.intelliweather.net/imagery/intelliweather/sat_worldm_640x320_img.htm

  463. Posted Apr 26, 2008 at 9:26 AM | Permalink

    462 (Erl):

    It suggests that you are beginning to take the argument seriously.

    Unfortunately not. I was trying to set you straight, but obviously failed [again].

  464. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 26, 2008 at 9:55 AM | Permalink

    463 (Leif)
    It’s obviously me that is failing. Never mind. Tomorrow is another day.

  465. Posted Apr 26, 2008 at 11:22 AM | Permalink

    Leif,

    Didn’t go to the synagogue… I made this preliminary comparison. I’m going to get some numbers.

  466. Posted Apr 26, 2008 at 11:25 AM | Permalink

    Leif,

    It’s obvious that Judith Lean used the same proxies than Yang et al. Perhaps her reconstruction was based on Yang’s data and Sunspots binnacles.

  467. Posted Apr 26, 2008 at 11:29 AM | Permalink

    465 (Nasif): Spelling of my name :-)
    466 (Nasif): Don’t worry about Lean’s old reconstruction. She was a coauthor on the Wang et al. paper. Only use that one. Waste of time to work on data that Lean herself does not believe anymore.

  468. Posted Apr 26, 2008 at 11:51 AM | Permalink

    # 467

    Leif,

    Oops! Sorry… Ive corrected it.

    Have you noticed the large bump in the line of temperature variability from 1990 to 1992? Perhaps Yang et al exaggerated a little in the upturn of the tropospheric temperature since 1800 AD. Yang’s line goes off with respect to the observed temperatures since 1750 AD.

  469. Posted Apr 26, 2008 at 11:53 AM | Permalink

    468

    Myself,

    Yang’s line goes off with respect to the observed temperatures since 1750 AD.

    Sorry, the year must be 1950 AD instead 1750 AD… :(

  470. Posted Apr 26, 2008 at 11:57 AM | Permalink

    469 (Nasif): I misunderstood the Yang thing. I thought you meant Wang. Again: do not use the Lean data. IT IS A WASTE OF YOUR AND MY TIME. I’m sure you can get the various errors straightened out…

  471. Posted Apr 26, 2008 at 12:17 PM | Permalink

    # 470

    Leif,

    You’re right… I’ll use only your data and perhaps Wang’s data. Regarding Yang et al, I’ll ask to Craig Loehle for his authorization to use his data on the reconstruction of 2000 years temp variability. I hope to have a new plot in some minutes.

  472. Posted Apr 26, 2008 at 1:58 PM | Permalink

    Something is wrong in this graph… I will revise data.

  473. Posted Apr 26, 2008 at 3:18 PM | Permalink

    # 472

    For me and for all,

    The plot of temperature variability from proxies data by Yang et al coincides with Leif’s plot, except for the last 127 years. The line of the observed temperatures by UAH almost coincides also. Nevertheless, if I include the line of the other proxies corrected data by Craig Loehle the things go down-up… Taken into account that the lines from Svalgaard’s work and Wang’s work are almost coincident and that the Loehle’s work is more accurate than does worked on tree-rings, I would conclude that the Solar Irradiance variability has almost none effect on temperature variability. However, this would be an unscientific conclusion from my side; thus, I conclude that other variables are driving the temperature variability on Earth. Physically, CO-two cannot be an important driven. I could preferably conclude that other until-now-unknown or imperceptibly studied intrinsic and internal variables are inducing this mode on climate Earth…

    I’m almost convinced, but, do you have an idea about those non-human variables?

  474. Posted Apr 26, 2008 at 3:32 PM | Permalink

    Leif,

    Definitely, SI has had a small effect on temperature variability in the last two centuries. Do you have another surprise in the solar surprises box? The good thing is that my graphs are sooo simple. ;)

  475. Posted Apr 26, 2008 at 3:39 PM | Permalink

    473,474 (Nasif): If I may say so, the plot makes no sense can correlates with the text of #473. The Yang curve looks plain wrong.

  476. Posted Apr 26, 2008 at 3:53 PM | Permalink

    # 475

    Leif,

    Yes, I know; that’s the reason by which I tried to correlate the TA from Loehle’s article with your data, but then the things go upside down, that is, when the TSI goes up the TA goes down and viceversa. It makes no sense… I cannot conclude that the Sun has no effect on TA. Well… Why not? Perhaps because I have not more cards to play the game, except for gravity and the outer layers of the terrestrial atmosphere.

  477. Posted Apr 26, 2008 at 4:37 PM | Permalink

    476 (Nasif): that’s OK. People have tried for 400 years to show that there is a correlation, and with no luck, so no wonder that you can’t find anything either.

  478. Posted Apr 26, 2008 at 9:40 PM | Permalink

    Leif,

    If I eliminate the proxies from Lean data the graph is almost identical to your graph:

  479. Posted Apr 26, 2008 at 9:53 PM | Permalink

    # 478

    Me,

    The differences are the peaks, which are higher in Leif’s graph, and some troughs that are lower in Lean’s data. I suppose the similitude appeared by the elimination of the old records in Lean’s data.

  480. Posted Apr 26, 2008 at 11:19 PM | Permalink

    479 (Nasif): And that is no coincidence, because both Lean’s and my reconstruction are derived from the sunspot number. The difference is that my sunspot numbers were adjusted upwards before 1947 by 20%, and then also before 1890 by another 20%, for a total of 40%

  481. Posted Apr 27, 2008 at 12:31 AM | Permalink

    # 480

    Leif,

    Yes, the exaggerated data of Judith obey to the inclusion of some proxies. I would like to see a reconstruction based only in isotopes or something combining isotopes and sunspots. It would be interesting, wouldn’t it? I know the work of Broecker and colleagues with iron stained grains.

  482. Posted Apr 27, 2008 at 7:38 AM | Permalink

    481 (Nasif): You can see such a reconstruction [by me] here: (TSI Reconstruction 1428-2005, Santa Fe, SORCE 2008)
    Be warned though that the reconstruction is meant as a reductio ad absurdum to show that the idea behind the proxy used is no good.

  483. anonymous
    Posted Apr 27, 2008 at 8:48 AM | Permalink

    Leif. What are your views on this
    http://icecap.us/images/uploads/ANURGENTSIGNALFORTHECOMINGICEAGE.pdf

  484. Posted Apr 27, 2008 at 9:34 AM | Permalink

    484 (anon): “views on this”, Well, the ‘paper’ is clearly political [to wit: THE AGW DIVERSION] and I take a dim view of such. I also hate papers that has time running backwards :-) . I would have liked to see the Milankovics cycles a few thousand years into the future as well, before we being to talk about what is coming. The strong T-peak in 1998 was due to a very strong El Niño [see #458 for what that is] and has nothing to do with solar activity [Erl notwithstanding]. El Niños occur every 5-10 or so years and we are, perhaps, overdue for another one. Basing trends on just a few years is silly anyway. To summarize my views [which are apt to change at any time - depending on data and my interpretation of such]:
    1) CO2 is a greenhouse gas and does have some effect. How much [and what counterbalancing factors there might be] we don’t know.
    2) Global warming is preferable to global cooling.
    3) The Sun has some effect too but in the short term [centuries] the effect is small [of order 0.1C].
    4) There may be longer ‘cycles’ [e.g. ~1500 years] that play a role. The jury is still out. It is not known if these are solar or not. We do not know any mechanism that would cause the Sun to have long cycles [does not mean there aren't any].
    5) Both the 14C and the 10Be proxies are not independent of climate so not all variation may be related to the Sun.

    I’m sorry if I sound overcautious, but that is a reflection of our [or at least my] ignorance.

  485. kim
    Posted Apr 27, 2008 at 9:39 AM | Permalink

    483 (Anon) Well I think the cooling trend will be 20-40 years and nothing’s ‘tipped’. Leif, what is it that makes one cycle’s CR output peaked, and the next’s rounded?
    =======================================

  486. Posted Apr 27, 2008 at 10:01 AM | Permalink

    # 485

    Kim,

    There are rounded peaks when some sunspots persist over time with the same diameter and the fulgurations are of the same kind, or even if some filaments appear when the sunspots are declining. For example, today:

    http://www.swpc.noaa.gov/ftpdir/latest/dayind.txt

  487. Posted Apr 27, 2008 at 10:13 AM | Permalink

    Leif,

    Please, don’t take it personal. There are three kinds of scientists on climate change and global warming:

    1. Those who are convinced that they have discovered the black thread and have no eyes for other things beyond the black thread.
    2. Those that are not convinced of anything and are oscillating from one side to another more attractive thread.
    3. Those who want to make sure that there are other threads more feasible than the black thread because they have found that the black thread cannot mend the rips.

    Regards,

  488. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 27, 2008 at 10:17 AM | Permalink

    484 (Leif)

    The strong T-peak in 1998 was due to a very strong El Niño [see #458

    It’s best if we can make a distinction between ‘ENSO’, ‘El Nino’ and ‘La Nina’ on the one hand and the generalised warming and cooling events that occur around the entire tropical region that have no name.

    We all know that ENSO is internally forced. Let’s therefore put that on one side as a problem well solved. Anything that is internally forced is unlikely to have consequences for global temperature.

    Let’s talk about generalised warming X and generalised cooling Y and perhaps define it in terms of the temperatures in the lower troposphere in the tropics as measured by satellites. We should stay away from the El and the La words to avoid any confusion and we definitively don’t want to offend people who have entrenched positions. It’s not polite.

    Now, is generalised warming X likely to be externally forced or not? Or is it likely to be mediated by something like cloud cover? And what, in your view might cause the clouds to diminish or to expand in extent and so influence the amount of solar radiation that gets through to the surface?

  489. Posted Apr 27, 2008 at 10:17 AM | Permalink

    485 (kim):

    what is it that makes one cycle’s CR output peaked, and the next’s rounded?

    Still on that idea, eh? 1st: the peaked-rounded ‘cycle’ is not the usual solar cycle, but goes from one solar maximum to the next solar maximum [see #11 in Svalgaard #4]. 2nd: CR are charged particles and as such ‘spiral’ around magnetic field lines, they also ‘drift’ in the magnetic field. The direction of these movements depends on the direction of the magnetic field and that changes at solar maximum, when the polar fields reverse. At short-hand [but not quite correct] rule is that in peaked ‘cycles’ CRs drift in near the Sun’s equatorial plane, while in rounded ‘cycles, the CRs drift in over the poles. This change in geometry accounts for the different shape of the CR ‘cycles’ as seen from the Earth [we are closer to the equatorial plane]. You can learn more here as my description is overly simplistic [but there are some things you just don't wanna know all the gory details about].

  490. Posted Apr 27, 2008 at 10:32 AM | Permalink

    486 (Nasif): undiluted nonsense
    487 (Nasif): I’m not offended, as you were missing my [4th] category
    488 (Erl): clouds? The clouds generally regulate a negative feedback loop which keeps the climate rather nicely stable. Let’s look at a [horrible] positive feedback loop: warming clears away the clouds; that decreases the albedo, causing more warming, clearing away more clouds, causing more warming, decreasing the clouds, more warming, etc, until we all fry. The negative loop [the iris-effect] goes like this: warming causes more evaporation, thus more clouds, thus reflecting more sunlight back, thus causing a cooling with less evaporation and therefore fewer clouds leading to warming again, etc, so we oscillate slightly about a stable, happy medium. [I don't need a slew of 'papers' pro and con on this - you asked for my opinion]

  491. kim
    Posted Apr 27, 2008 at 10:40 AM | Permalink

    489 (Leif) Thank you. So the effect of the CR may also differ from cycle to cycle, as from polar to equatorial in orientation, non?
    =======================================

  492. Posted Apr 27, 2008 at 10:48 AM | Permalink

    490 (me): In a negative feedback loop, it doesn’t matter much where the stimuli come from: solar, man, volcanoes, oceans, cosmic rays, etc. Positing one single stimulus is bound to confuse rather than to explain.

  493. Posted Apr 27, 2008 at 10:53 AM | Permalink

    491 (kim):

    So the effect of the CR may also differ from cycle to cycle [...] non?

    Probably non. Unless you have specified what ‘the‘ is, the question is ill posed. About the ‘may‘, I refer [again] to Tweedledee.

  494. maksimovich
    Posted Apr 27, 2008 at 11:57 AM | Permalink

    489 (Leif)

    This change in geometry accounts for the different shape of the CR ‘cycles’ as seen from the Earth

    This makes the bottom panel in Belov et al so interesting (15 Svalgaard 4)

  495. Posted Apr 27, 2008 at 12:05 PM | Permalink

    494 (maks): why is that interesting? The prediction is already wrong.

  496. Posted Apr 27, 2008 at 12:07 PM | Permalink

    Leif

    Still have not had time to read the papers but thanks for that explanation, it makes sense. What this means to me so far is the following.

    If, and only if, we have a consistent reduction in temperature over the next decades (I am assuming your number of ~72 for the max smoothed sunspot number) that we need to investigate what the mechanism is between solar output across the entire spectrum and how that spectrum couples to the terrasphere (total Earth system). As engineers know, when there are resonances there are amplifications, this is whether you are talking about mechanical systems, electrical systems or any type of coupled system.

    I have always wanted to build a model of the solar/terrestrial magnetic field as well as other possible coupling mechanisms. There was some very interesting data from Ulysses a few years ago that indicated interesting couplings between the solar magnetic field and the terrestrial field that had not been seen before. There have been extremely interesting couplings that have been conclusively shown in the Jovian system, between Jupiter and Io. This goes for absorption as well. For example oxygen absorbing short wavelengths absorbs a lot more energy than the absorption of medium wave infrared emitted by the Earth in the infrared.

    The bottom line is that you have convinced me that TSI alone probably does not influence the climate as the magnitude of the variance is not that much, especially in comparison to the seasonal orbital variation. However, that being said, the climate may have a hysteresis that precludes short term variability having a dramatic effect.

    I go back to something that I said several months ago, which is that we need more spacecraft to further investigate the sun and the solar/terrestrial interface. I say this as we know from sediment and ice cores that we have been able to discern solar variation. If it is detectable, then it has a detectable effect on climate and therefore there are couplings that indicate that either TSI variance has more effect than a straightforward calculation would provide, or that there are as of yet couplings that we do not understand.

  497. Posted Apr 27, 2008 at 12:17 PM | Permalink

    496 (Dennis):

    There was some very interesting data from Ulysses a few years ago that indicated interesting couplings between the solar magnetic field and the terrestrial field that had not been seen before.

    I’m not aware of any such. A reference or elaboration, perhaps? In general I agree that we need more data (Duh). When we begin to get proxies from outside the Earth [ice cores and borehole temps from the Moon or Mars] some interesting comparisons can be made. My point all along this long thread, has been to challenge the view that ‘solar’ is a convenient ‘dumping ground’ for any influence [real, contrived, or perceived] that doesn’t fit whatever pet view we are peddling.

  498. maksimovich
    Posted Apr 27, 2008 at 12:26 PM | Permalink

    Re (leif)

    Cr intensity yes.Topological characteristics no.

  499. Posted Apr 27, 2008 at 12:33 PM | Permalink

    498 (maks): OK, but this effect has been known since 1977, so Belov 2004 does not bring that much to the table…

  500. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 27, 2008 at 12:37 PM | Permalink

    Leif
    You forgot this bit:

    Now, is generalised warming X likely to be externally forced or not?

  501. maksimovich
    Posted Apr 27, 2008 at 12:54 PM | Permalink

    499 (leif)

    The topological shape change(mesa/matterhorn)suggests otherwise.Chirality and helecity being related.

  502. Posted Apr 27, 2008 at 3:47 PM | Permalink

    # 490

    Leif,

    486 (Nasif): undiluted nonsense

    Absolutely right. That’s no sense.

    487 (Nasif): I’m not offended, as you were missing my [4th] category

    What’s the fourth category?

  503. Posted Apr 27, 2008 at 4:41 PM | Permalink

    Leif,

    I’m not aware of any such. A reference or elaboration, perhaps?

    I received a mail from ESA talking about the “interchange” of information between the SMF and the GMF. I’ll look for it in a moment.

    My point all along this long thread, has been to challenge the view that ‘solar’ is a convenient ‘dumping ground’ for any influence [real, contrived, or perceived] that doesn’t fit whatever pet view we are peddling.

    I should confess that it was also my favorite view until you came with your graphs. However, if it is not the Sun, and the CO2 and other GHG are -physically- non capable of generating GW, what other factors could be involved in the phenomenon?

    Why ENSO was warmer in 1997-1998, when we received the energy of more Solar flares and specially from one of the most violent fulgurations ever observed? I know you can easily answer these questions. :)

  504. VG
    Posted Apr 27, 2008 at 5:35 PM | Permalink

    leif #484 Thanks for reply.

  505. Posted Apr 27, 2008 at 5:56 PM | Permalink

    # 503

    Leif,

    I didn’t find the e-mail from Esa, but Earl is right. I remember that it was about a magnetic contact between the solar magnetic field and the Earth’s magnetic field when the magnetic field of Earth was aligned properly with respecto to the solar magnetic field. They mentioned something about a kind of interaction between both fields and that, in some manner, the magnetic field of Earth was altered, or something so.

  506. Posted Apr 27, 2008 at 6:11 PM | Permalink

    500 (Erl):

    is generalised warming X likely to be externally forced or not?

    I don’t know what you mean by ‘generalized warming X’. Let’s look at a few cases:
    The 1998 was El Nino [just ask Peruvian fishermen]. The whole globe warmed. ENSO is internal forced [your #488: We all know that ENSO is internally forced - and I agree]. So, in this case ‘generalized warming X’ was internal forced, unless 1998 was not ‘generalized warming X’. Coming out a glaciation might be ‘generalized warming X’. If that was due to orbital variations, we might call it externally forced. I guess that if can have ‘generalized warming X’ we can also have ‘generalized cooling Y’. The cycles of many glaciations that started 3 million years ago by the removal of CO2 from the atmosphere due to uplift of the Himalayas might be termed ‘internal forcing’, So, I guess that no simple and single answer can be given to your question.

    501 (maks…):

    The topological shape change(mesa/matterhorn)suggests otherwise. Chirality and helicity being related

    Since we have a perfectly good explanation already, why do the topological shape changes suggest otherwise? and what do they suggest? Let me try again: we have a theory that predicts the observed shape changes, so how can the observed shape changes suggest otherwise? I could understand what you said if the observed changes were different from the predicted changes, but since they are not…

    502 (Nasif): What characterizes your three categories is that there is a black thread already picked out and the whole discussion swirls around the already pre-selected black thread. The fourth [and maybe more] category does not start with a given black thread.

    503 (Nasif): I have no idea why the 1997-1998 El Nino was so strong. Solar activity [if you want to blame that] was only moderate. Imagine you have ten boys. One is going to be the tallest so you pick him and ask: ‘why is he the tallest?’.

  507. Posted Apr 27, 2008 at 6:12 PM | Permalink

    Role of the Sun, etc

    Visitors to this continuing discussion might find the talk I gave on Wednesday April 16 to the EGU Assembly in Vienna relevant to their interests.

    The Abstract of the presentation is here http://www.cosis.net/abstracts/EGU2008/01317/EGU2008-A-01317-1.pdf

    and the program here

    http://www.cosis.net/members/meetings/sessions/oral_programme.php?p_id=322&s_id=5262

    Attached is the set of ppt slides I used. As I only had 15 minutes to talk, I limited my presentation to slides 8 to 11 inclusive and 14 to 20 inclusive. I went through slides 8 to 11 rather quickly and concentrated on the interaction effects in slides 14 to 19.

    I presented the framework for understanding the role of the Sun in the Earth’s climate dynamics in this very, very simple way: in the language of experimental design, the Sun is the independent variable, the Earth is the dependent variable.

    More specifically, I explained that there are three classes of solar variables, namely 1. gravitational; 2. what I class together as ‘heliospheric topology, the Sun’s electromagnetic field and material output'; and 3. irradiance. I quickly outlined all the classes of dependent (ie climate dynamic variables) that I listed in the Abstract + the other factors I mentioned there. I also mentioned that this presentation is best understood as a footnote to the science of Rhodes W Fairbridge and referred people to the Wikipedia entry about him.

    My argument is that the variables in the class ‘heliospheric topology, the Sun’s electromagnetic field and material output’ have the greatest climate change effects, followed by the gravitational ones, followed by the irradiance ones but that the amplification effects of the interaction between the solar variables in the way they affect climate dominate. Slides 14 to 19 contain some examples, but there are many more.

    I spent about 90 seconds on slide 20 which summarises the central argument about time series analysis, namely that

    The Sun-Earth system is a complex, electrodynamically and gravitationally coupled system dominated by nonlinear interactions.

    The Sun, as a complex dynamic system, generates a wide range of complex perturbations affecting the climate system as a complex non-linear, non-stationary system.

    I am now preparing a paper for a referred scientific journal based on the slides. I should point out that the statements in the slides are not carefully argued, merely assertions. But they are all anchored to the scientific literature. Of course, all this means is that they stand until falsified by subsequent work.

    Amongst other things, I hope this presentation, and the subsequent published paper, goes some way to addressing a theme often emphasised by Lief that to understand the role of the Sun in our climate dynamics, you need to look at the totality of solar phenomena. I emphasise in the attached that when you do so, the interaction effects between the various solar variables (the independent variables in the language of experimental design) dominate.

    I have raised some of the points in these slides in these discussions on earlier Svalgaard numbers

    Best wishes to all

    Richard

    – SolarVariability_Report.pdf

  508. Posted Apr 27, 2008 at 6:27 PM | Permalink

    507 (Richard):

    Attached is the set of ppt slides I used.

    Attached to what, where?

  509. Posted Apr 27, 2008 at 6:41 PM | Permalink

    505 (Nasif)

    I didn’t find the e-mail from Esa, but Earl is right.

    Apart from it was Dennis who said it. The fact that a southward pointing solar [interplanetary] magnetic field connects with the Earth’s magnetic field was discovered by Fairfield in 1966 and mentioned by Arnold a bit earlier and indeed theorized by Dungey in 1961 and by Bigelow in 1898. The fact that an east/west pointing solar [interplanetary] magnetic field connects with the Earth’s magnetic field was discovered by me in 1968 and independently by Mansurov in 1969. This is all old hat and [semi-] well understood. Possibly Dennis had something else in mind.

  510. Posted Apr 27, 2008 at 6:55 PM | Permalink

    # 506

    Leif,

    503 (Nasif): I have no idea why the 1997-1998 El Nino was so strong. Solar activity [if you want to blame that] was only moderate. Imagine you have ten boys. One is going to be the tallest so you pick him and ask: ‘why is he the tallest?’.

    Could we blame to something like this? Solar flares without the aid of sunspots.

  511. cba
    Posted Apr 27, 2008 at 6:57 PM | Permalink

    507(Richard):

    the abstract is quite interesting. I think I understood the idea that variations in the various solar parameters had more effect upon climate variability than did the variation in solar intensity but it didn’t explicitly state the variations which left the comment suggesting that the gravity and electromagnetic nature had a greater effect upon climate than does the radiative power output. Was I just misinterpreting what was said?

  512. Posted Apr 27, 2008 at 7:07 PM | Permalink

    # 509

    Leif,

    Apart from it was Dennis who said it.

    I was not aware of what Dennis said.

    The fact that a southward pointing solar [interplanetary] magnetic field connects with the Earth’s magnetic field was discovered by Fairfield in 1966 and mentioned by Arnold a bit earlier and indeed theorized by Dungey in 1961 and by Bigelow in 1898. The fact that an east/west pointing solar [interplanetary] magnetic field connects with the Earth’s magnetic field was discovered by me in 1968 and independently by Mansurov in 1969. This is all old hat and [semi-] well understood.

    Well, you’re the experts. I cannot compare my six-months astrophysics course with your almost-whole life like solar physicists. Perhaps the E-mail from ESA was a press release or something of the kind, but I’m sure about what I read, and I didn’t read a single word linking the connection of both magnetic fields with climate changes.

    Possibly Dennis had something else in mind.

    Possibly… :) Could it be a connection between the magnetic fields marriage and global warming?

  513. Posted Apr 27, 2008 at 7:11 PM | Permalink

    510 (Nasif):

    Could we blame to something like this? Solar flares without the aid of sunspots.

    No, because there were not an excessive number of flares. See, e.g, Jan Janssens summary at: http://users.telenet.be/j.janssens/SC23web/SCweb6.pdf

  514. Posted Apr 27, 2008 at 7:19 PM | Permalink

    512 (Nasif):

    I was not aware of what Dennis said.

    Check back at #497.

  515. Posted Apr 27, 2008 at 8:36 PM | Permalink

    # 510

    No, because there were not an excessive number of flares.

    243 solar flares class M and X.

    Also, this graph.

  516. Posted Apr 27, 2008 at 10:25 PM | Permalink

    #508 (Leif)

    I’ve tried a couple of times to attach the pdf file I have of these slides, but nothing I try works. In desperation, I’ve asked fellow Ozzie Earl Happ to post them for me. My comment isn’t much use without the slides!

    I’m sorry about that.

    Richard

  517. Posted Apr 28, 2008 at 12:11 AM | Permalink

    Dr. Leif Svalgaard,

    I need to quote your article. Please, give me a reference.

    Thanks a lot,

    Nasif Nahle

  518. Posted Apr 28, 2008 at 5:38 AM | Permalink

    515,517 (Nasif): the graphs you showed are not of solar flares. Which paper exactly?

  519. Posted Apr 28, 2008 at 5:41 AM | Permalink

    516 (Richard): you cannot ‘post’ a paper as such. What you can post is a URL that points to the paper. So, say, that your paper is at website XYZ.org, then you would post something like this: http://www.XYZ.org/your_paper.pdf

  520. cba
    Posted Apr 28, 2008 at 6:46 AM | Permalink

    395 (Leif):

    I just got around to downloading Goode & Palle 2007 and started to scan over it before I’ve got to head out to the ‘salt mine’ for work. In the introduction, they refer to Bond Albedo. Unless my recollections are skewed, Bond albedo is visible only whereas albedo is all reflected energy and that would suggest they are looking at only 42-46% of the problem (visible vs total).

    Is this another ‘english’ problem? If not, might it have skewed their results?

  521. Posted Apr 28, 2008 at 6:58 AM | Permalink

    520 (cba): Since they observe visible light [earthshine] the albedo by necessity has to be the Bond albedo. What the clouds reflect back to space also does not include the short wave radiation that doesn’t get past the stratosphere. The total scales pretty well with the Bond and the authors are fully aware of the fundamentals of their science and would have commented upon this if it had been a problem. There seems to be this notion around that scientists that spend their life studying something do not take into account all those things that casual observers notice after five minutes of looking at the matter.

  522. Posted Apr 28, 2008 at 7:01 AM | Permalink

    521 (me): oh my! what was I thinking? the Bond albedo takes into account all wavelengths.

  523. Posted Apr 28, 2008 at 7:07 AM | Permalink

    522 (me): what I meant to say was that they do, of course, not actually observe all wavelengths but only the visible [and a bit of the infrared and UV]] and it is part of the calibration procedure to derive the Bond albedo from the measurements; and you can assume that they do that correctly.

  524. Posted Apr 28, 2008 at 7:09 AM | Permalink

    #519 (Leif): Thanks Leif. Erl has pointed this out too. I didn’t realise that. He thinks he can hide my pdf in a wine bottle on his website and use some special code to post it here! (The pdf that is ,not the wine bottle). It’ll take maybe 24 hours!! I’m not too flash at understanding URLs but have found an Erl who is remarkably helpful and has some IT savvy connections.

    #507 (cba): It should be a bit clearer when Erl uses his URL to get my pdf here. Sorry to have stuffed things up like this.

  525. Posted Apr 28, 2008 at 8:12 AM | Permalink

    523 (me,cba): Here is a description of how Goode, Palle, et al. actually do their measurements:
    http://www.bbso.njit.edu/Research/EarthShine/espaper/earthshine_proposal.html

  526. cba
    Posted Apr 28, 2008 at 8:38 AM | Permalink

    522 etc. (Leif):

    Sorry – was thinkking that Bond albedo was derived from visual geometric albedo rather than geometric albedo.

    as for what is lost on the inbound / outbound trek it’s fairly minor – I think in the 10s of W/m^2, mostly IR.

  527. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 28, 2008 at 9:09 AM | Permalink

    The diagrams relate to the tropical atmosphere between 10°N-10°S Lat.

    In recent months the sun has been entirely free of sunspots for lengthy intervals and we have seen a strong cooling trend develop in the tropical troposphere and at the surface. This provides an opportunity to monitor what happens to the atmosphere when sunspots fail to appear. We can infer how far short wave radiation that is associated with sunspot activity actually penetrates. The picture that emerges is surprising. Short wave heating radiation that is strongly absorbed by water vapour seems to be influential right down to the middle troposphere between 5km and 10km in altitude. By changing the temperature of this layer over short periods of time it must directly affect cloud cover. Significantly, the variation in temperature in this zone is much greater than occurs in the lower troposphere. At times when the temperature in the lower troposphere falls slightly the temperature in this layer falls much more and this is a condition that characterises La Nina cooling events.

    Here is my commentary:

    UPPER STRATOSPHERE
    It is a pity that we do not have data for the atmosphere above 50km. At times, the hot zone (if we can speak of temperatures in the negative as relatively hot) obviously extends well above 50km. The upper troposphere is strongly heated by very short wave radiation. It shows strong heating during El Nino events as can be seen in post #456. The double peak is probably associated with the sun being directly overhead at the equinox. It is frequently stronger in March but is actually stronger in September in some years so the effect of the orbital variation and the differential heating of the hemispheres is much weaker than the effect of the sunspot variation. When sunspot activity falls away the upper stratosphere cools strongly as the changed contours amply demonstrate.

    MIDDLE STRATOSPHERE
    The zone of peak ozone accumulation occurs in this layer at about 30 to 40km in elevation. With zero sunspot activity ozone must deplete due to lack of FUV because the layer cools very strongly when sunspots disappear. The cooling may relate to the diminished absorption of UVA and UVB by ozone because there is quite simply less ozone to do the absorbing. An already very cool zone can cool by as much as 8° C in localised areas.

    LOWER STRATOPSPHERE
    With reduced sunspot activity this layer cools as the upper stratosphere cools but to a lesser extent. This temperature change must relate directly to the changed incidence of UVA and UVB radiation because it is supposed that UVC does not penetrate to this level.

    UPPER TROPOSPHERE
    This zone is unique to the tropics. Strong convection propels air above 10km and the affected air loses temperature with falling pressure. The speed of transfer accounts for its failure to warm like the air that lies above the tropopause (10km) at mid latitudes. Hence temperatures of minus 80° are reached.

    In the industrial production of ozone air must be dried to a dew point of 80°C because ozone is so soluble in water. At minus 70°C to -80°C this zone has little water vapour resulting in strong ozone persistence. The layer could cool further when ozone depletes. In 2008 cooling occurred in localised regions within this very cold layer (dark green spots in anomalies).

    Paradoxically, as the Earth has warmed this very cold layer of air has deepened. In the 1980’s this zone frequently thinned and disappeared entirely for several months in mid year. This no longer occurs. However, the layer is thinner in the early months of 1998 than in 2007.

    MIDDLE TROPOSPHERE
    In this layer the temperature of the air is below freezing. There is limited humidity and cirrus cloud exists as ice crystals. The humidity of this zone depends upon convection from the lower atmosphere below 5km. A patch of warmer air (more than 4°C warmer) disappeared in February and another is forming in late April. In La Nina conditions these zones of warmer air disappear entirely as is apparent in my post describing the El Nino of 1997-8 at #456. Cold air means more cloud and further cooling. Breaking out of this cycle will require increased sunspot activity.

    LOWER TROPOSPHERE
    Temperature variations in this zone are smaller than in the Middle troposphere. Anomalies generally range between -0.6°C and +0.6°C about a third to a quarter of that seen in the middle troposphere. To show the greater variation the middle troposphere must warm from above. I suggest its temperature varies with the absorption of UVA and UVB by water vapour. The lower troposphere, with its more modest temperature fluctuations gets its heat via thermal exchange processes with the surface. Rising surface and air temperatures reduces cloud cover that could produce a vicious cycle of more warming. However, the Earth is abundantly supplied with water and the evaporative effect is a strong force for cooling. Consequently, the temperature fluctuation seen in the lower troposphere is actually quite slight. The water that cools the surface and the air as it evaporates later condenses releasing heat to drive convective processes. This also strongly reduces temperature fluctuation and tends to re-establish cloud cover. So, the cycle is very benign.

    CONCLUSION
    What happens in the sub zero environment of the middle troposphere is much influenced by the amount of UVA and UVB generated by sunspot activity. This drives cloud cover change and surface temperature trends.

    Periods free of sunspots show us how short wave radiation drives temperature change via albedo change. The evaporative response of the water (so abundant on the land, the sea and the atmosphere of the lower troposphere itself) creates the damping factor that keeps the surface habitable. That said, large fluctuations in sunspot activity occur on an inter-annual basis that affect the amount of heat stored in the oceans. The important factor controlling the swing in heat gain is the timing of the large increases in sunspot activity that occur within the solar cycle. If strong increases in short wave radiation occur in Southern Hemisphere summer the potential for heat gain is much greater than in July. This has been the pattern of recent times.

    And so I agree with the comment in #490

    The negative loop [the iris-effect] goes like this: warming causes more evaporation, thus more clouds, thus reflecting more sunlight back, thus causing a cooling with less evaporation and therefore fewer clouds leading to warming again, etc, so we oscillate slightly about a stable, happy medium.

    It appears that the thermostatic control works in such a way as it makes no difference which part of the solar cycle that we are in, or how large that cycle is, as to whether we are to warm or cool. It is the shorter term fluctuations in irradiance, not the whole of cycle fluctuation that throws the atmosphere temporarily out of adjustment allowing more or less radiation to reach the surface.

    All that said, there is a puzzle in this data. What has caused the warming in the upper stratosphere (with echoes at other levels) that is circled and a question mark applied? It occurs at a time that is free of sunspot activity.

  528. Posted Apr 28, 2008 at 9:17 AM | Permalink

    # 518,

    Leif,

    I need a reference to your paper on the reconstruction of TSI from sunspots binnacles. You can make use of my E-mail, if you wish, thus I can show you first my article. Thanks…

    # 518

    Oops! The first one is wrong… Let’s try again.

    “Warning: This U.S. Government resource is for authorized use only. If not authorized to access this resource, disconnect now. Unauthorized use of, or access to, this resource may subject you to disciplinary action or criminal prosecution. By accessing and using this resource, you are consenting to monitoring, keystroke recording, or auditing.”

  529. Posted Apr 28, 2008 at 9:51 AM | Permalink

    528 (Nasif): The TSI-paper is still in preparation. I have a talk at AGU last fall. You can find it here http://www.leif.org/research/GC31B-0351-F2007.pdf and reference it as EOS, Abstract, GC31B-0351-F2007.
    Send stuff to leifATleif.org
    Re flares: no matter your lists, there were no great amount of flares in 1997-1998.

  530. Posted Apr 28, 2008 at 10:09 AM | Permalink

    530 (Nasif): Ha Ha, XYZ was just for illustration. My first inclination was XXX, but who knows what kind of stuff THAT would have linked to…

  531. conard
    Posted Apr 28, 2008 at 10:14 AM | Permalink

    Leif,
    Wow, what an site to use as an example :-) Next time use example.com, which is a reserved second level domain.

  532. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Apr 28, 2008 at 11:47 AM | Permalink

    Regarding magnetic fields, it might be just a tad more complex perhaps.

    Perhaps the most simple way to describe the rest is call it “the negative feedback loop of the hydrosphere” et al?

    Of course it’s more complex: “solar orbit, volcanism, gravity, greenhouse effect, magnetic field and oxygen-rich atmosphere”

    But as far as that goes;

    In the Earth’s atmosphere, a tenuous layer of ozone within the stratosphere absorbs most of this energetic ultraviolet radiation high in the atmosphere, reducing the cracking effect. The ozone, too, can only be produced in an atmosphere with a large amount of free diatomic oxygen, and so also is dependent on the biosphere (plants). The magnetosphere also shields the ionosphere from direct scouring by the solar wind.

    Here for the hydrosphere.

    Remember; 50% of the mass of the atmosphere is in the bottom 5 km of the troposphere, which has 80% of the total atmosphere. And of course, most of the rest is in the stratosphere.

    Although of course, there’s also the πέδον σφαίρα (pedon sfaira) et al. :)

  533. Posted Apr 28, 2008 at 11:57 AM | Permalink

    533 (Sam): “a tad more complex” is devoid of information content. The interaction of the interplanetary magnetic field with the Earth is well-understood. As always, we are still fighting about the details, but the picture is clear.

  534. Posted Apr 28, 2008 at 12:10 PM | Permalink

    There has been some comments about ‘the pressure of the solar wind’ and such. To put these in perspective: the solar wind does exert pressure on the Earth, but less than the pressure of the sun light falling on the Earth. This pressure pushes the Earth away from the Sun, thus increasing the distance and the length of the year. In fact, the total increase of the length of the year since the birth of the solar system amounts to less than one minute. This should give you an idea about how minute is the influence of the solar wind on the Earth system.

  535. Posted Apr 28, 2008 at 12:23 PM | Permalink

    # 535

    Leif,

    This bring us again back to the starting point of the polemics: We don’t know why the climate is changing and what caused the anomaly of ENSO in 1998…

  536. Posted Apr 28, 2008 at 12:29 PM | Permalink

    536 (Nasif): We may not know what did what, but we do know a lot that don’t have anything to do with the climate.

  537. Posted Apr 28, 2008 at 12:50 PM | Permalink

    # 535

    Leif,

    I agree. We also know that we must be careful with the use of our current resources for confronting the dilemma in the future.

  538. cba
    Posted Apr 28, 2008 at 1:06 PM | Permalink

    525 (Leif):
    thanks forthe ref to palle and goode’s proposal. It was illuminating. Are they the ones now setting up a network of small robotic telescopes (12-24″) for earthshine albedo measurements?

    I didn’t see a date on the proposal but it looked to be fairly recent, perhaps a few years old at most. I don’t think their proposed new camera has been out all that long.

    I noticed they seemed to express having had problems with the photometry calibrations using nearby stars which might be related to their apparent lack of using flat fields (as they stated they would be adding them in the future). Also, they seemed to be suggesting that they were using an RGB filtering scheme for obtaining added information but did not mention UBVRI (or subset) photometric filters which offer standardized filter bandwidths. Note a ccd can generally do a fair job on the BVR and often I and reference stars oft times are given in terms of the filtered values – at least the precision reference stars tend to be.

  539. Posted Apr 28, 2008 at 1:11 PM | Permalink

    539 (cba): yes they are setting up a network. The proposal is several years old. Palle has moved to the Canary Islands to set up shop there. They have refined the calibration now and are pretty sure they have all details under control.

  540. cba
    Posted Apr 28, 2008 at 1:17 PM | Permalink

    535 (Leif):

    I’m surprised the radiation pressure has had so little effect over several billion years. While capture area is r^2 and mass is r^3 related and there’s a lot of r in the earth relative to a small asteroid, it seems that albedo and even rotation play a part in the orbital dynamics of a near earth asteroid in the relative short term (many dozens of years).

  541. Posted Apr 28, 2008 at 1:31 PM | Permalink

    541 (cba): Yes, it is surprising, which is why I posted it. The solar wind pressure is even less, that was the main point. What I was talking about is different from the Poynting–Robertson Effect [which you may have in mind], which actually works to make stuff spiral in towards the Sun.

  542. cba
    Posted Apr 28, 2008 at 1:38 PM | Permalink

    540 (Leif):

    Sounds like they’re good to go – except for the one possible problem in albedo as a function of lunar cycle. Around here the last year one could clean up on bets as to when the next clear viewing night would be and that was full moon +/- 4 days or less. The rest seemed cluster around nights I had previous commitments on and on nights I had early morning next day commitments :)

    538 (Nasif):

    It would seem that 1998 was caused by an albedo plunge (per Leif’s graph from Palle and Goode). That in turn should have been from cloud cover reduction. Assumptions that the albedo drop was caused by the heat put one into the problem of massive positive feedback and runaway conditions. Hence it must be the direct cause. That leaves the problem of what caused the cloud cover drop (and better fleshing out of the details and mechanisms, etc.).

  543. Posted Apr 28, 2008 at 1:40 PM | Permalink

    539 (cba): if youview the page source, it reveals near the bottom:
    BBSO/NJIT – Last modified: June 23rd, 1998
    thus dating the proposal to before that.

  544. Posted Apr 28, 2008 at 1:47 PM | Permalink

    543 (cba): check back at #453 for how El Nino starts: a reduction of the trade winds starts of a positive feedback loop which eventually is stopped by development of Rossby waves, etc.

  545. Posted Apr 28, 2008 at 1:48 PM | Permalink

    cba, #458, rather.

  546. cba
    Posted Apr 28, 2008 at 1:55 PM | Permalink

    542 (Leif):

    I wasn’t thinking poynting/robertson. With larger objects that rotate, there is no uniformity of emission (assuming poor conductivity) and so the heated zone moves out – perhaps towards the direction of travel , perhaps away from. There, all of the excess acquired thermal energy radiates away in this one (averaged) direction and provides a continual ‘push’ in the opposite direction from where the heated part has moved. This also assumes most of the excess heat radiates away before the object rotates 180 deg.

    I forget who came up with this but I think it was a Russian within the last 2 decades.

  547. Posted Apr 28, 2008 at 1:59 PM | Permalink

    # 541

    cba,

    It’s not a surprise if P = Pg + Prad and Pg + Prad = ρ(kT)/ ṁ + 1/3 a(T^4). The radiation pressure is not the same as the gas pressure, although both come together in solar wind. Anyway, the combination gas pressure + radiation pressure gives a minimal consequence if we are considering a medium size star. We have to consider also the angle of incidence of the radiation, the distance and the area of Earth confronting the solar bombardment.

  548. Dennis Wingo
    Posted Apr 28, 2008 at 1:59 PM | Permalink

    (497) Leif

    Here is the reference from ESA. Extremely darned interesting data.

  549. Posted Apr 28, 2008 at 2:01 PM | Permalink

    547 (cba): but you are still fixated on the heating bit. I was just talking about the effect of the pure pressure. Should not even have brought up the sunlight bit, as it [as it did] was apt to send you down an irrelevant path. The solar wind [and sunlight for that matter] exerts a pressure measured in Newton that pushes on the Earth. This is just mechanics. No heating, rotation, absorption, thermal energy, nada, zip, nix.

  550. Posted Apr 28, 2008 at 2:16 PM | Permalink

    549 (Dennis): I would like to see the paper before anything, but I’m not going to pay to see tax-payer funded research. The press release is just the usual hype.

  551. Posted Apr 28, 2008 at 2:24 PM | Permalink

    # 545

    cba,

    538 (Nasif):

    It would seem that 1998 was caused by an albedo plunge (per Leif’s graph from Palle and Goode). That in turn should have been from cloud cover reduction. Assumptions that the albedo drop was caused by the heat put one into the problem of massive positive feedback and runaway conditions. Hence it must be the direct cause. That leaves the problem of what caused the cloud cover drop (and better fleshing out of the details and mechanisms, etc.).

    El Niño starts when the tradewinds reduce their strength and the west winds are stronger and push the PO warm water towards the Eastern PO. We don’t know what weakens the tradewinds. The assertion about global warming weakens the tradewinds is not true. Another wrong assertion is that El Niño is caused by warm water when the phenomenon has to do with the, until-now uncertain, weakening of tradewinds.

  552. Posted Apr 28, 2008 at 2:33 PM | Permalink

    552 (Nasif): you also go read #458, please.

  553. Posted Apr 28, 2008 at 2:39 PM | Permalink

    # 553

    Leif,

    # 458 is a good description of the phenomenon. What I am trying to say in a very bad Spanish (heh) is that we don’t know what causes the weakening of the tradewinds.

  554. Posted Apr 28, 2008 at 2:44 PM | Permalink

    554 (Nasif):

    we don’t know what causes the weakening of the tradewinds

    The Walker circulation, has weakened by about 3.5 percent since the mid-1800s. The trade winds are the portion of the Walker circulation that blow across the ocean surface. So, we are down to say that we don’t know what weakens the Walker circulation. Of course, Global Warming has been blamed for this as for [approximately] 7,613 other things.

  555. Posted Apr 28, 2008 at 2:47 PM | Permalink

    Also, we don’t know what causes that the pressure gradient weakens. Perhaps, someone could think that is the cause of the weakening of the tradewinds.

  556. Posted Apr 28, 2008 at 2:52 PM | Permalink

    Leif, our posts crossed ways. I insist, the Walker cell is confinated to the East of the PO by the effect of the displacement of warm water to the East after the weakening of the tradewinds, not before.

  557. Posted Apr 28, 2008 at 3:02 PM | Permalink

    557 (Nasif): What I said was about the extent of my knowledge :-) Unless somebody knows what weakens what I suggest we leave it at that. Here is a pictorial representation [for an La Nina, btw]:

  558. cba
    Posted Apr 28, 2008 at 3:35 PM | Permalink

    550 (Leif):

    I know you were talking about that but then you assumed I was thinking about the poynting/roberston – which I wasn’t – and then said so. That effect isn’t relevent to earth because of the atmosphere. I’m not big into pressure from darned good vacuums so it was no surprise that it was less than the radiation pressure. What was surprising was that the radiation pressure and radiation effects had such little overall effect over billions of years. I didn’t think it would be a 50% increase in the orbital distance but I figured it would have been something noticeable.

  559. cba
    Posted Apr 28, 2008 at 3:43 PM | Permalink

    548 (Nasif):

    those stars that blow off massive amounts of mass in the form of a solar wind can only do it for short times. Besides, if you’re considering the sun as a lightweight, those big stars (or moderately big) aren’t going to be around long enough to provide a truly long term effect. Lifespan falls dramatically with mass so you don’t get into the billions of years with stars much bigger than the sun.

  560. Posted Apr 28, 2008 at 3:54 PM | Permalink

    559 (cba): This is a simple engineering problem in Mechanics 101. It is a long time ago that I did that particular calculation. You can help by doing it again [and prove me - or at least my memory - wrong :-)]

  561. Posted Apr 28, 2008 at 3:56 PM | Permalink

    561 (cba): hint: the force exerted by the solar wind on the Earth-magnetosphere system is 2×10^7 Newton.

  562. cba
    Posted Apr 28, 2008 at 4:43 PM | Permalink

    there is 3.2E+16 seconds in 1 billion years
    earth is 6.0E+24 Kg
    sun is 2.0E+30 kg
    1 AU is 1.5E+11 m

    f=ma = 2.0E+7 = 6.0E+24 a
    a = 3.3E-18 m/s
    v=at = 1m/s, not exactly significant compared to orbital velocity, implying that orbital changes are quite insignificant.

    So the question remains how much photon pressure has been exerted during that time frame. I suspect it’s quite a bit more than that but whether the orbital change is measured in millimeters or miles is a different question yet, probably one not really worth answering.

    Another interesting (or not) tidbit is how much debris falling in to the sun is intercepted, hitting earth and whether there is a net effect in some direction, such as to spee up the orbital velocity or slow it down. There again, is it even worth asking about in our context here?

  563. Posted Apr 28, 2008 at 4:50 PM | Permalink

    563 (cba): I think we have had enough orbital mechanics :-) My point was just that the solar wind pressure is VERY minute and that when people see press releases about the ‘gusty solar wind’ and ‘solar wind storms’ and so on, just to keep everything in perspective.

  564. cba
    Posted Apr 28, 2008 at 5:33 PM | Permalink

    there may yet be some sailing done on the solar wind and it even might be a viable travel method someday but I’m not holding my breath or saving any investment money for that sector.

    BTW, it’s be a long time since I was an undergrad. too and I won’t be finding out exactly what’s in the text for your mech. 101 (probably college physics I, mechanics and heat) – at least until the end of this semester as I cram for University physics I (mechanics and heat – the supposed calculus version) as I foolishly offered to teach it during the summer without having taught it before – assuming I’d have plenty of time at present to develop the lecture slides etc.:) However, I don’t think this problem is in the same vein as this course level – unless it was extremely specialized in some fashion. Rather it sound more like something from the junior level mechanics class.

    as for perspectives, it seems a more valuable and rare commodity than even common sense these days.

    Offhand one would think circulation is driven totally by heat distribution/equalization requirements. However, it would also seem that our albedo variations would not be driven by heat (in a positive feedback fashion). I can’t think enough at the moment to recall if we’ve discussed whether this enso/el nino/la nino stuff is caused ultimately by albedo changes or if albedo changes are caused by these enso/el nino/la nino factors.

  565. Posted Apr 28, 2008 at 5:39 PM | Permalink

    # 558

    Leif,

    We’re talking about two opposite things; you’re talking on La Niña, I’m talking about El Niño. That’s why the apparent discrepancy. Let’s leave it at that.

    # 560

    cba,

    The algorithm is also applicable to the Sun.

  566. Posted Apr 28, 2008 at 5:45 PM | Permalink

    565 (cba):

    whether this enso/el nino/la nino stuff is caused ultimately by albedo changes or if albedo changes are caused by these enso/el nino/la nino factors.

    Maybe a bit of both.

    http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2001/02/010207073628.htm :
    ScienceDaily (Feb. 20, 2001) Just as a spark can grow into a fire, so small departures of winds from the normal seasonal cycle in the far western equatorial Pacific can trigger a full-blown El Nino. Writing in the February 15 issue of the journal Geophysical Research Letters, Prof. Allan J. Clarke and Research Associate Stephen Van Gorder of Florida State University describe the model they have developed to predict El Nino using this trigger.

    The departure of the wind from its normal seasonal cycle is called a wind “anomaly.” The ocean is hypersensitive to zonal (east-west) equatorial wind anomalies. Analysis of eight El Nino events in equatorial wind data since 1960 shows that these events typically begin in the far western equatorial Pacific as small westerly wind anomalies. They grow and move eastward to the central equatorial Pacific as the ocean and atmosphere interact to reinforce the anomaly. La Ninas are similarly associated with easterly wind anomalies.

    Based on their observation that the wind anomaly in the far western equatorial Pacific typically precedes El Nino or La Nina by about six months, Clarke and Van Gorder developed a model which, in spite of its simplicity, performs as well as, or better than, the leading El Nino prediction models. Their new model is further improved, they note, by factoring in the east-west movement of the edge of the huge pool of warm water in the western equatorial Pacific. The model also predicts the demise of El Nino and La Nina.

    The authors urge further study of the western equatorial Pacific wind anomalies that spark El Nino and La Nina, because these anomalies are at present poorly understood.

  567. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 28, 2008 at 6:31 PM | Permalink

    Message to all interested in the weather

    Below is address for a great animation to give you a good visual picture of the way in which moisture from the tropics gets circulated (or not circulated during El Nino) into higher latitudes in this very cloudy and rather cold Southern Hemisphere winter. Snow in Australia in April? We have it now. You can see how the continent has cooled down so much as to become a magnet for the cold air from Antarctica. It got wet and it cooled down fast.

    Brett Dutschke, 28 April 2008

    Snow has been falling in the Blue Mountains amidst bitterly cold winds, and it’s only April.

    The snow has even been heavy on the western side of the Blue Mountains where it settled on the ground. Further south there has been about 15 to 30 centimetres worth on the Alps.

    Cold winds responsible for this snow are also generating a significant chill.

    Just after one o’clock this afternoon the temperature at Mount Boyce near Katoomba was just 2 degrees and the wind chill was minus four degrees. At about the same time it was only 4 degrees at Goulburn with a wind chill of minus 1. Goulburn’s average maximum in April is 19.

    This cold outbreak is a result of the strongest front since last winter. Fronts of this strength normally don’t arrive until at least May, so some are experiencing their coldest April day.

    Wellington only reached 13 degrees, breaking a 90-year April record.

    The strength of the circulation in the tropics is also something to contemplate when you are thinking of ENSO and keeping it in perspective in the grand scheme of things.

    http://www.coaps.fsu.edu/~maue/extreme/gfs/current/sh_water_his.html

    And a Northern Hemisphere still apparently dominated by Arctic influences in late April

    http://www.coaps.fsu.edu/~maue/extreme/gfs/current/pwater_his.html

    All originally from http://www.coaps.fsu.edu/~maue/weather/ by Ryan Maue who reports at #31 on the ‘Tropical Troposphere ‘ thread that:

    ENSO is phase locked to the seasonal cycle, hence the ability to predict January ENSO indices with July SSTs. However, the April persistence barrier precludes the converse prediction. A pretty good prediction for 2008 would be the continuation of La Nina conditions in the central and eastern Pacific.

    In my view that is another way of saying that everything gets re-programmed in the Southern Hemisphere summer, and that is an orbital thing and a land /sea distribution thing.

  568. Posted Apr 28, 2008 at 10:41 PM | Permalink

    (551) Leif

    Laf, a man after my own heart as I hate paying for papers online too. There is some interesting data under the fluff and I would strongly suggest paying attention to it as it may open a new avenue of investigation for solar/terrestrial influences.

  569. Posted Apr 28, 2008 at 10:45 PM | Permalink

    Leif, cba

    We did the solar wind/photon pressure over 4 billion years in astrophysics class and it worked out to about 1-3 m/s delta v so I concur that it is a surprising yet well understood number.

  570. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Apr 29, 2008 at 9:58 AM | Permalink

    It seems that we might be in for a bit of a shock involving the sun. But we can’t do anything about the sun, so perhaps we should be looking into what happens if sunspot activity stays as low as it seems to be.

    This is where questions about weather <—> La Niña/El Niño come in.

    All the ocean vessels moving around in the oceans and seas (at a minimum disturbing the current patterns in the water and ejecting particulates into the air) has some sort of an effect upon things here on Earth, as do all the aircraft in the sky disturbing patterns and jets sending out engine exhaust at higher colder altitudes. Eventually those aerosols (and those from automobiles, trains, trucks…) go where? Into the water and onto ice, right?

    Does it seem to anyone else trivially obvious that modifying large contiguous interlocked sections of 29% of the planet (cities, mega-cities, suburbs, roads, farms, train beds, freeways) is going to lower albedo and have an affect upon wind and water patterns?

    We know areas of concrete and asphalt, filled with structures of various heights made of glass, metal, concrete and brick, filled with waste-heat producing people and vehicles are known to influence weather patterns many miles away up and downwind. If the anomaly is reflecting something (since it’s derived from min/max readings…) perhaps it’s reflecting this.

    Land-use changes, along with various unintended consequences from waste heat and aerosols et al are what we should be focusing on.

    Maybe we’re getting there.

    The other trend that concerns Gaffin is climate change. He is no skeptic about global warming; he accepts the scientific community’s findings that Earth is heating up, pushed in part by human activity. But even if countries can reduce their greenhouse gas emissions, Gaffin suspects a certain amount of further warming is inevitable. “I think mitigating global warming is important,” he says, “but even with mitigation, all these people living in cities are going to experience some warming.” Based on research he conducted for the U.S. Global Change Research Program, he expects a warmer climate to worsen heat waves. “Right now, we average about 14 days each summer above 90 degrees [in New York]. In a couple decades, we could be experiencing 30 days or more,” he says.

  571. Posted Apr 29, 2008 at 10:18 PM | Permalink

    # 571

    Sam,

    Something is wrong. We have had unusual low temperatures even with the presence of La Niña. The last two days it was rainy and the temperature decreased to 13 °C.

    If solar activity has not increased, perhaps that’s the answer.

  572. Posted Apr 29, 2008 at 10:28 PM | Permalink

    Erl Happ has just sent me this URL:

    http://www.happs.com.au/downloaders/SolarVariability_Report.pdf

    The advice is that my pdf is a large file (6.6mb) so takes a little while to download – you may have a blank browser window that appears as if nothing much is happening while the file downloads, before it displays.

    Please keep in mind that it is a power point presentation, so nothing is carefully argued and linked to the published papers that are the primary sources. I’ve included a bibliography, but it is very incomplete. For example, I have not cited the papers of the two distinguished Japanese meteorologists Kunihiko Kodera and Yuhji Kuroda who have published extensively about the role of the Sun in regulating to some extent the major atmospheric/oceanic ossicilations such as NAM, QBO, ENSO.

    I get the sense that the interaction effects work somewhat like Erl suggests at #527. The immensely complex climate system is finely balanced. Solar effects may require the conjunction of several factors. If some are absent or not at the requiste level nothing much might happen. Different processes seem to function around solar max and solar min. There are other proceeses apart from radiant heating at work. For example, chemical and dynamic. In this regard the two Japansese scientists have developed the elements of a dynamic theory featuring the planetary waves. As I read all of the work summarised in my ppt slides, it is work-in-progress, could not be regarded as settled (is science ever settled?) and as good as the last published paper that reported the finding.

    I hope the Erl URL link works!!
    Richard
    PS Thanks hugely Erl for doing this.

  573. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 30, 2008 at 7:05 AM | Permalink

    Good discussion of the possibilities for ENSO for NH summer from a purely mechanistic/historical/climata-logic-less, sorry, climatological point of view at http://www.easternuswx.com/bb/index.php?showtopic=163347

    You can see from the discussion how the notion that round the globe tropical warming is driven by ‘internal oscillations in the climate system’ in a small part of the Pacific hampers progress in working out what is actually happening.

    Plain as a pikestaff that extra cloud is keeping the sun out. And the extra cloud is associated with low sunspot activity and marked cooling of the tropical middle troposphere as I showed in # 527,418 and 456. And the extra cloud is right round the globe. Is this notion that ‘round the globe tropical warming’is caused by changes in the Eastern Pacific a case of American ethnocentricity?

    Can we get you guys to expand your horizons a bit? You have got to stop focussing on the big spots (chickenpox) and work out what is causing them.

  574. Posted Apr 30, 2008 at 8:41 AM | Permalink

    # 574

    Erl,

    Plain as a pikestaff that extra cloud is keeping the sun out. And the extra cloud is associated with low sunspot activity and marked cooling of the tropical middle troposphere as I showed in # 527,418 and 456. And the extra cloud is right round the globe. Is this notion that ‘round the globe tropical warming’is caused by changes in the Eastern Pacific a case of American ethnocentricity?

    Anthropogenic aerosols perhaps? Hah! ;)

  575. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 30, 2008 at 9:30 AM | Permalink

    Nasif. Are those North American anthropogenic aerosols? ;>

    Another subject : the PDO anomaly

    Background:

    http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/Newsroom/NewImages/images.php3?img_id=18012
    http://wattsupwiththat.wordpress.com/2008/04/29/nasa-pdo-flip-to-cool-phase-confirmed-cooler-times-ahead/
    http://www.jisao.washington.edu/pdo/
    http://horizon.ucsd.edu/miller/download/LBmode/LBmode.pdf For the full knicker-knotting metrological model.

    Is it just a creature of ENSO? See this high powered statistical analysis of 2003:
    http://www.cpc.noaa.gov/products/outreach/proceedings/cdw28_proceedings/mnewman_2003.ppt#256,1,ENSO-forced variability of the Pacific Decadal Oscillation

    Or look at my bush mechanic’s assemblage below.

    The aggregate of the SOI index across all the months of a solar cycle is obviously are a good measure of the cycles propensity to produce warming or cooling in the tropics and ultimately in the North Pacific as well. We had a little La Nina in SH summer 2006 that helped with the current chill in the North Pacific.

    The lower diagrams (PDO) show the flux of North Pacific sea surface temperature and sea level pressure patterns with a five year running mean in red.

    Reputedly the cool phase PDO is recognisable in the anomaly pattern described below:
    1. Less than average Ocean surface temperatures in the northeastern and tropical Pacific
    2. Less than average October-March northwestern North American air temperatures
    3. More than average October-March Southeastern US air temperatures
    4. More than average Northwestern North American spring time snow pack
    5. More than average Winter and spring time flood risk in the Pacific Northwest

  576. Erl Happ
    Posted Apr 30, 2008 at 9:40 AM | Permalink

    571 (Sam)
    In my opinion what you bring up is all valid stuff based on great observation, deduction and careful validation. We need a lot more of that 19th century stuff and less 21st century modelling.

  577. Posted Apr 30, 2008 at 10:00 AM | Permalink

    576 (Erl): As usuyal, it is very hard to make any sense out of your voluminous missives: Can I summarize: PDO is SOI is integrated effect of ENSO which is El Nino/La Nina.

  578. Posted Apr 30, 2008 at 12:12 PM | Permalink

    La Niña will stay “playing” until July 2009, so we can expect some climatic surprises. This thread became bulky… We need Svalgaard # 6.

  579. Posted Apr 30, 2008 at 12:26 PM | Permalink

    Oops! until July 2008… Sorry :)

  580. Posted Apr 30, 2008 at 12:36 PM | Permalink

    Leif,

    I got a question. What’s the reason for taking 1366 W/m^2 as “normal”?

  581. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Apr 30, 2008 at 12:54 PM | Permalink

    From http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Insolation#Earth.27s_insolation

    References http://www.pmodwrc.ch/pmod.php?topic=tsi/composite/SolarConstant

    That’s 1366

  582. Posted Apr 30, 2008 at 1:09 PM | Permalink

    Thank you Sam. No sense in that number.

  583. Posted Apr 30, 2008 at 1:14 PM | Permalink

    581,582 (Nasif,Sam): The latest measurements (SORCE) indicate that 1360 is the better ‘normal’, but for consistency, the 1366 is kept. Nobody knows why there is this difference and what the correct number is, but is hardly matters.

  584. Posted Apr 30, 2008 at 1:43 PM | Permalink

    Leif,

    Yeah, it hardly matters; neverthelless, I’d prefer 1360 because 1366 like average “normal” gives always “anomalous” solar irradiance .

  585. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Apr 30, 2008 at 1:46 PM | Permalink

    1300, 1400, it’s around there. :)

  586. Posted Apr 30, 2008 at 1:46 PM | Permalink

    # 585

    Me,

    …because 1366 like average “normal” gives always “anomalous” solar irradiance .

    I should say “…because 1366 like average “normal” gives always negative “anomalous” solar irradiance. Well… Almost always… ;)

  587. Posted Apr 30, 2008 at 3:05 PM | Permalink

    585 (Nasif): your meaning escapes me. The 1360.5 is probably the correct value at minimum, with 1361.5 at maximum.

  588. cba
    Posted Apr 30, 2008 at 4:18 PM | Permalink

    Richard,

    your link downloaded just fine. Now all I need is some time to read it.

  589. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Apr 30, 2008 at 4:25 PM | Permalink

    Leif, I think he means his calculations with 1366 always give a wrong answer (perhaps because a lot of these calculations, if not all, are based upon some form or derivitive of the solar constant itself?) Except in certain calculations where it comes out correctly. (?)

    I was under the impression that was a derived number from TSI readings and was only an estimate. What’s the +/- on whatever number is being used? I dunno.

    The Solar constant is the amount of the Sun’s incoming electromagnetic radiation (Solar radiation) per unit area, measured on the outer surface of Earth’s atmosphere in an aircraft perpendicular to the rays. The Solar constant includes all types of Solar radiation, not just the visible light. It is measured by satellite to be roughly 1,366 watts per square meter (W/m²),[2] though this fluctuates by about 6.9% during a year (from 1,412 W/m² in early January to 1,321 W/m² in early July) due to the earth’s varying distance from the Sun, and by a few parts per thousand from day to day. Thus, for the whole Earth (which has a cross section of 127,400,000 km²), the power is 1.740×1017 W, plus or minus 3.5%. The Solar constant does not remain constant over long periods of time (see Solar variation). 1,366 W/m² is equivalent to 1.96 calories per minute per square centimeter, or 1.96 langleys (Ly) per minute.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solar_constant#Solar_constant

  590. Posted Apr 30, 2008 at 5:37 PM | Permalink

    590 (Sam): the absolute uncertainty is 5-10 W/m2. This is a very hard number to measure, but we do the best we can. The relative accuracy [from day to day] is much, much better.

  591. Dennis Wingo
    Posted Apr 30, 2008 at 6:36 PM | Permalink

    (591) Leif

    That uncertainty number is interesting. In the spacecraft design world when we are doing a thermal analysis or designing a solar array, the numbers used are:

    ~1358 W/m2 for the mean irradiance (AM0)

    1326 W/m2 for the minimum on July 3, and 1388 W/m2 on January 3.

    Those are the numbers that we design to, and it seems to work in terms of thermal loads and solar panel output.

  592. Posted Apr 30, 2008 at 7:00 PM | Permalink

    592 (Dennis): The ‘design accuracy’ for the SORCE TIM-instrument is 0.48 W/m2, so an order of magnitude smaller. However, the differences between the various spacecraft run in the 0-14 W/m2 range [from 1360 to 1374], so… You numbers work because of two things:
    1) there are close
    2) engineers always leave a safety margin anyway [you never design to the very edge]

  593. Posted Apr 30, 2008 at 7:10 PM | Permalink

    Dennis, Leif, Sam,

    Just try to get the energy caught by a square meter of grassland considering 1360 W/m^2 and 1360.5 W/m^2 at the top of the atmosphere. 5 W/m^2 against -0.1523 W/m^2 makes an important difference (a priori), true?.

  594. Posted Apr 30, 2008 at 7:17 PM | Permalink

    Me,

    Thus, I prefer to do my evaluations on best terrains for growing veggies with 1360.5 to 1361.5 W/m^2 than using the awful “normal” 1366.5 W/m^2. I need positive numbers hitting on my crops. ;)

  595. Posted Apr 30, 2008 at 7:36 PM | Permalink

    Me, again,

    Perhaps it would be easier using a field light transmission photometer, but I have to make predictions some months before I am able to use a terrain.

  596. cba
    Posted Apr 30, 2008 at 7:52 PM | Permalink

    596 (Nasif):
    if you’re asking about predictions there’s much more. That total 136x is all wavelengths and needs to be trimmed down to something suitable. Your latitude counts and so does the time of day for energy amounts as 136x w/m^2 is for the sun at zenith at the top of the atmosphere. . You’ve also got atmospheric absorption coming down (perhaps 20W/m^2 – clear sky) and total cloud overcast could absorb 90% of the incoming. Your latitude combines with the sun’s position for an altitude (as in alt – azimuth positioning) along with time of day to create an angle with the zenith or normal vector to the perpendicular to surface. Perhaps finally, you have an albedo reflecting out a fraction of the incoming power, probably around 0.1 to 0.2 for grasses.

  597. Erl Happ
    Posted May 1, 2008 at 1:15 AM | Permalink

    578 (Leif)

    Leif

    576 (Erl): As usuyal, it is very hard to make any sense out of your voluminous missives: Can I summarize: PDO is SOI is integrated effect of ENSO which is El Nino/La Nina.

    No, but thanks for the opportunity to try again.

    The waters of the Pacific circulate in a clockwise direction. The amount of heat in the waters of the North Pacific and the shape and extent of the warm zones and the cold zones, the latter including the waters in the Alaska and the California currents (all relating to PDO) depends upon the heat that is put into the waters as they move across the equatorial Pacific.

    The PDO negative phase is caused by a negative phase in the tropics. However, nobody is yet talking about negative or positive phases in tropical temperatures. People have yet to notice such things. My top graph simply points out that there is indeed a negative and a positive phase and it corresponds to which is dominant, El Nino or La Nina, or as I would prefer to describe it, generalised warming in the tropics or generalised cooling. That way we protect the sensibilities of those, like yourself, who choose to believe in ‘internal oscillations of the climate system’. Hopefully, they can then open their eyes to the major dynamic driving temperature change, that in the tropics.

    Is this quite plain?

  598. Erl Happ
    Posted May 1, 2008 at 1:34 AM | Permalink

    Leif, on the basis of the dynamics that you see in the temperature data I show in #527 and #456 can I ask whether you agree with the following argument, much condensed for ease of digestion:

    The range of temperature variation in the middle troposphere (approx 5-10 km) is much greater than in the lower troposphere. The middle troposphere appears to heat with increased sunspot activity and cool when sunspot activity is absent. We could therefore expect a strong flux in cloud cover (and radiation reflection) depending upon sunspot activity and, judging from the surface temperature response, this appears to be what is happening. A fall in the temperature of the middle troposphere is associated with cooling at the surface. A rise in temperature in the middle troposphere is associated with warming.

  599. Posted May 1, 2008 at 3:23 AM | Permalink

    598 (Erl): What I was trying to do was to extract the core phenomenon “PDO is integrated effect of El Nino/La Nina.” By this I meant: Positive/Negative PDO sets up the conditions for more El Ninos/La Ninas. To this you answer “No”, but then immediately go on to say “there is indeed a negative and a positive phase and it corresponds to which is dominant, El Nino or La Nina”. Isn’t that the same thing [except that I think you have it backwards, or does 'negative' mean 'warm' and 'positive' mean 'cold'?]. If El Ninos are dominant during a given phase, does that not mean that such a phase is just a bunch of El Ninos rather than La Ninas?

    599 (Erl): Even more condensed for even better understanding:

    A fall in the temperature of the middle troposphere is associated with cooling at the surface. A rise in temperature in the middle troposphere is associated with warming.

    Since the troposphere is heated from below, yes, a warmer surface means a warmer middle troposphere. To this we can agree.

  600. Erl Happ
    Posted May 1, 2008 at 4:08 AM | Permalink

    600 (Leif)

    Positive/Negative PDO sets up the conditions for more El Ninos/La Ninas

    Re PDO and question of what leads and what follows. The tropics lead because that is where the ocean is heated. Outside the tropics energy lost exceeds energy gained via insolation. Change in the heat accumulation in the tropics brings either net warming or cooling to the entire Pacific. A cool Pacific (and global tropical waters) is described as negative PDO as if it were a climatic phenomenon with an existence that is independent of what is happening in the tropics. But, the tail never wags the dog.

  601. Erl Happ
    Posted May 1, 2008 at 4:13 AM | Permalink

    600 (Leif)

    Since the troposphere is heated from below, yes, a warmer surface means a warmer middle troposphere. To this we can agree.

    Then explain to me how the middle troposphere can heat by 4°C when the lower troposphere shows no heat gain at all.

  602. bender
    Posted May 1, 2008 at 4:24 AM | Permalink

    #576 Erl
    All oceanic flows are physically coupled. Sometimes the coupling is weak. Sometimes it is strong. The use of eigenanalysis in defining PDO, ENSO (as EOFs) guarantees that the series are statistically independent, i.e. uncorrelated. That of course does not imply that the flows through these regions are physically independent. Just that the dominant driving forces underlying each may be independent.

    Do not forget that PDO, ENSO (and all the EOF-based circulatory modes) are human inventions. EOF analysis exaggerates statistical independence at the expense of the physical dependence that you are noting. Hence the duality.

    Also do not forget that uncorrelatedness over a long-time series does not imply uncorrelatedness of all segments of the time series. Warm/cold pools that sit in between the ENSO & PDO EOF loading centres will lead to short-term correlatdness between the two series. So what. So physically coupled fluid system can’t be fully decomposed. No one is surprised by this.

  603. Erl Happ
    Posted May 1, 2008 at 6:49 AM | Permalink

    603 (Bender)
    You lose me. It all sounds very sophisticated but what does it actually mean? Can we get away from the statistics for a moment and try to deal with the world of physical relations.

    What is the import of your comment?

  604. bender
    Posted May 1, 2008 at 8:03 AM | Permalink

    Erl,
    In #576 you ask:

    PDO: Is it just a creature of ENSO?

    I answer: “To some degree, yes. To some degree, no. Why would you expect otherwise?”

    In #601 you assert:

    The tropics lead

    I assert that it is not a matter of lead or lag, that the illusion of lead results from differences in magnitude of heating.

    So my comments squarely address your questions and assertions. You decide what import that may have.

  605. Sam Urbinto
    Posted May 1, 2008 at 8:22 AM | Permalink

    Leif: “5 W/m^2 against -0.1523 W/m^2 makes an important difference (a priori), true?.”

    A loss versus a gain, sure. Especially a slight loss of .15 versus a 5 gain. And that is watts per square meter, and we’re talking about a lot of meters here.

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