What Warms the Oceans?

Dear Jennifer,

You recently posted an article about a paper, entitled: ‘Oceanic Influences on Recent Continental Warming’, suggesting that it is warming of the oceans that has driven warming of the land since the 1970s.  

You commented, “But it does not tell us what has warmed the oceans!”

Do you realize that is has been postulated that long-term variations in solar/lunar tides control inter-decadal ocean surface temperatures by influencing the rate of up-whelming of cold deep-water?

Climate scientists have long known that it takes about three terra-watts of power to maintain the up-welling  of water in the great oceans. Two terra-watts of this power is provided by surface winds. The winds continually blow surface water off the top of cool deep water, allowing the cooler ocean water to rise to the surface.

The problem has always been finding the extra terra-watt of power that is necessary to maintain the up-welling.  One possible source for this extra power is tidal friction. 

Two-thirds of all the energy dissipated by the tides in the oceans is dissipated by friction between the ocean water sloshing up onto and flowing back-off the shallow continental shelves e.g. the Canning Basin of N-W Australia and the Bearing Sea of Alaska. The remaining one-third of the energy that is dissipated by the solar/lunar tides is dissipated by currents of deep ocean water smashing up against deep ocean ridges, like the mid-Atlantic ridge, and the flanks of the Hawaiian Island chain. Remarkably, this latter process dissipates about 1 terra-watt of energy, just the right amount of energy to maintain the up-welling process.

The following two papers support a link between changes in ocean temperature and subsequent changes in atmospheric temperature and provide a possible source that could be responsible for ocean heating and cooling.

Cheers,
Ian Wilson, Toowoomba, Australia

1. Tropical Pacific decadal variability and global warming
by Amy J. Bratcher and Benjamin S. Giese, 2002, Geophysical Research Letters, Vol 29, N0 19.

Abstract: An analysis of ocean surface temperature records show that low frequency changes of tropical Pacific temperature lead global surface air temperature changes by about 4 years. Anomalies of tropical Pacific surface temperature are in turn preceded by subsurface temperature anomalies in the southern tropical Pacific by approximately 7 years. The results suggest that much of the decade to decade variations in global air temperature may be attributed to tropical Pacific decadal variability. The results also suggest that
subsurface temperature anomalies in the southern tropical Pacific can be used as a predictor for decadal variations of global surface air temperature. Since the southern tropical Pacific temperature shows a distinct cooling over the last 8 years, the possibility exists that the warming trend in global surface air temperature observed since the late 1970’s may soon weaken.

2. Solar Forcing of Changes in Atmospheric Circulation, Earth’s Rotation and Climate
by Adriano Mazzarella, 2008,  The Open Atmospheric Science Journal, Vol  2

Abstract: Cross analysis of available historical series of solar wind turbulence, atmospheric circulation, Earth’s rotation and sea surface temperature, when smoothed from the secular trend and periods shorter than 23 years, allowed a cascade climatological model to be set up that integrates the Sun-atmosphere-Earth system as a simple unit and ties solar corpuscular output to sea surface temperature through atmospheric circulation and the Earth’s rotation. An increase in solar corpuscular activity causes a deceleration of zonal atmospheric circulation which, like a torque, causes a deceleration of the Earth’s rotation that, in turn, causes a decrease in sea surface temperature. Application of this holistic model allows us to predict a gradual decline in global warming starting from the current decade.

*********************

Photograph of the waves taken at Alexandra Bay, Noosa National Park, in November 2008 by Jennifer Marohasy.

47 Responses to What Warms the Oceans?

  1. sod December 18, 2008 at 11:39 pm #

    i think the title “What Warms the Oceans?” (again) is fundamentally wrong, especially does it not follow from stuff like this:

    long-term variations in solar/lunar tides control inter-decadal ocean surface temperatures by influencing the rate of up-whelming of cold deep-water?

    Jennifer in short again:

    what warms the soup? must be the stirring!

  2. Bob Sykes December 18, 2008 at 11:41 pm #

    Well, there’s always the oceanic ridges and undersea volcanos. How much power do they put out?

  3. bill-tb December 19, 2008 at 1:22 am #

    Why does science have to be so complex?

  4. Mike C December 19, 2008 at 3:16 am #

    A recent article on WUWT showed Pacific sea surface heights elevated against the land mass of Asia and sloping down toward the Americas. I immediately thought this looked like a tidal effect. I don’t think it is just the sun and moon that affect the tides. It also depends on our position in orbit around the sun and where the earth is positioned relative to the other planets.

  5. Ian December 19, 2008 at 6:05 am #

    It is the very very very complex nature of it all that makes the big sole focus of CO2=Global Warming so foolish imo!

  6. sjt December 19, 2008 at 6:51 am #

    “It is the very very very complex nature of it all that makes the big sole focus of CO2=Global Warming so foolish imo!” First, get your facts right. The GCM is a general circulation model. The whole point of them is that they deal with circulation and fluid behaviour. That was the big difference between them and the previous, much simpler, models. There is no ‘focus’ on CO2, they just repeatedly spit out the same answers, CO2.

  7. Louis Hissink December 19, 2008 at 7:04 am #

    SJT:
    “The GCM is a general circulation model. The whole point of them is that they deal with circulation and fluid behaviour. That was the big difference between them and the previous, much simpler, models. There is no ‘focus’ on CO2, they just repeatedly spit out the same answers, CO2.”

    ALL GCM’s have, as a basic rule, that doubling CO2 will cause a rise in atmosphere temperature. It is inbuilt in the model from the start. Every additional parameter is to offset this initial assumption.

    They spit out CO2 because that is the way the GCM’s are defined.

    And no one, no one has been able to mathematically describe turbulent motion – so the GCM’s cannot possibly model this physical phenomena.

  8. sjt December 19, 2008 at 7:09 am #

    “ALL GCM’s have, as a basic rule, that doubling CO2 will cause a rise in atmosphere temperature. It is inbuilt in the model from the start. Every additional parameter is to offset this initial assumption.”

    Pure fiction Louis. You demonstrate once again that you have absolutely no idea what you are talking about. Once again, you will provide absolutely no evidence to back up your claim.

  9. Louis Hissink December 19, 2008 at 7:15 am #

    What warms the oceans?

    How about looking at things in perspective – the oceans are nothing more than a thin film of fluid coating a massive planet, Earth.

    It’s the Earth’s internal thermal state that determines what happens on the surface.

    And it isn’t due to radioactivity.

  10. janama December 19, 2008 at 8:11 am #

    Louis – perhaps that’s why the average temperature of the world’s largest lake, Lake Superior, has gone up 4.5 degrees since 1979 as have the other large lakes.

    http://www.thedailygreen.com/environmental-news/latest/2563

  11. Marcus December 19, 2008 at 9:07 am #

    “the world’s largest lake, Lake Superior”

    Could be wrong, but I thought Lake Baykal is the largest lake on the planet.

    At least it holds the largest amount of fresh water anyway.

  12. Luke December 19, 2008 at 9:10 am #

    Poor sinkers – ALL WRONG ! every single word you’ve written. Pig ignorant in fact.

  13. janama December 19, 2008 at 9:16 am #

    Lake Superior is the freshwater lake with the greatest surface area at 31,700 square miles (82,103 square kilometers). Lake Baykal has the greatest volume of fresh water.

  14. Ninderthana December 19, 2008 at 10:09 am #

    Instead of exchanging barbs, why not (actually) read the two papers that have been posted and argue about the evidence.

    Here is a little extra information that may get you think about tidal dissipation as a secondary energy source controlling deep (cold) water up-welling.

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    The line of nodes of the lunar orbit appears to rotate around the Earth, with respect to the Sun, once every Draconitic Year (TD = 346.620 075 883 days). This means that the Earth experiences a transition from a maximum to a minimum in the meridional and zonal components of the tidal stress (or vice versa), at times separated by:

    1/4 TD = 86.65002 days 1st tidal harmonic
    5 x ¼ TD = 1 ¼ TD = 433.275095 days = 1.18622 years 2nd tidal harmonic
    5 x 1 ¼ TD = 6 ¼ TD = 2166.375474 days = 5.93111 years 3rd tidal harmonic

    The Earth has two distinct short-term wobbles. The first is the annual wobble which is a forced motion caused by the seasonal variations in the Earth’s atmosphere, oceans and hydrosphere. The second is a periodic wobble of the Earth’s polar axis with an average period of 433 days known as the Chandler Wobble (Gross 2000). This wobble is thought to be a free oscillation of the Earth’s rotation axis caused by the fact that the Earth does not rotate about its figure axis.

    Dissipation processes associated with wobble-induced deformations of the solid
    Earth should cause the Chandler wobble to freely decay on a timescale of about
    30-100 years (Plag et. al. 2005), unless some force is acting to reinvigorate it. The fact that there has been no noticeable decay in the Chandler Wobble has raised questions about the source of excitation for the wobble. Gross (2000) proposed that the wobble was excited by a combination of atmospheric and oceanic processes, with the dominant excitation mechanism being ocean-bottom pressure fluctuations.

    The Chandler Wobble also suffers from a sinusoidal variation in its amplitude that has a period of roughly 6.4 years (Kosek 2005). The amplitude modulation period of 6.4 years is most likely just a beat period produced by the interaction the annual oscillation and Chandler Wobble (Kosek 2005).

    This raises the possibility the source of excitation for the Chandler Wobble might have an extra-terrestrial origin. It is possible that the 6.40 year realignment period for the terrestrial planets has interacted with the sidereal orbital period of the Earth/Moon system over the eons, to produce a side-lobe modulation that it has slowly nudged the precession rate of the line-of-nodes of the lunar orbit towards its current value. Hence, we now have a (lunar orbit)precession rate that produces a 2nd harmonic for the maximal changes in tidal stresses that varies on a time scale of 1 ¼ TD = 433.2751 days = 1.18622 years.

    The fact that 2nd tidal harmonic is so close to the nominal 433 day period of the Chandler Wobble, suggests that the variations in lunar tides produced by the precession of the line-of-nodes of the lunar orbit could, in fact, be the source of the ocean-bottom pressure fluctuations that are thought to be responsible for the excitation of the Chandler Wobble.

  15. Grendel December 19, 2008 at 11:03 am #

    Its a ‘terawatt’ – not a terra-watt.

  16. Louis Hissink December 19, 2008 at 11:20 am #

    SJT,

    So supply the basic design parameter for a GCM please to substantiate your allegation. Easy enough to disprove me by supplying evidence of the model design.

    In case you have not understood it, all GCM’s assume that doubling CO2 will cause a specific rise in atmosphere temperature, known as climate sensitivity.

    Disprove it, then.

  17. Louis Hissink December 19, 2008 at 11:22 am #

    Lamprey

    Evidence please, not your authoritative bluster. And I note you do not dispute the inability of your GCM’s to model turbulence, and hence their inability to mimick the physical behaviour of the atmosphere.

  18. Pete December 19, 2008 at 1:13 pm #

    Louis is correct as I understand things. The models assume a water vapor magnified CO2 effect as an input. The only physical basis for this is that CO2 increases will cause a very small increase in temperature, which will increase the water vapor green house gas through evaporation. But there is no consideration from the negative feedback of increased cloud formation and vertical transport.

    They then see the model temperatures climb and say; “Wow! Look at what CO2 does to temperature.”

  19. Malcolm Hill December 19, 2008 at 1:38 pm #

    Good on you Pete for stating the obvious at along last.

    Unfortunately the white coats with their selective use of the science and the comprehensively indaquate GCMs cant bring themselves to look at it in a professional manner.

    They would rather go on TV and Radio spreading yet more misinformatation to continue fool the people who pay their salaries and buy their toys for them in the first place.

    The funding and politicalisation of science in Australia is an absolute disgrace.

  20. Gordon Robertson December 19, 2008 at 2:25 pm #

    Bob SYkes “Well, there’s always the oceanic ridges and undersea volcanos. How much power do they put out”?

    Don’t go there Bob. Last time I suggested something similar, it upset the AGW crowd all the way to Belgium. One so-called scientist from that esteemed country threatened to stop talking to me if I questioned his theories further. Some geophysicists get hysterical when you suggest the Earth’s core temperature of about 5000 C, has to vent somewhere. I don’t like to upset them by letting on the Earth’s core is about as hot as the outer layer of the Sun.

    I was advised by several geophysicists, in a rather patronizing manner, that the heat generated from the Earth’s surface due to internally generated heat is a small fraction of the heat emitted due to absorption from the Sun. Contrary to those opinions, I have seen several references on the net, like this one:

    “The estimated amount of total heat flowing from the Earth’s interior is equivalent to 42 terawatts of power, or more than ten times the amount of electric generation capacity existing in the world today”.

    I have seen references to that power being 1/3 the total power generated, including that collected from the Sun. Someone is wrong somewhere. I’m not clear on this yet, and I’m looking for a reliable source. Recent research by the EAPS team at MIT is suggesting the heat generated from the core may be a lot more than realized and they have indicated the heat transport mechanism is not understood very well. That does not surprise me in the least. When you consider that volcanic activity is a byproduct of heat from the core, you have to wonder just how much it has warmed our planet.

    As Louis likes to point out, certain sciences rely far too much on proxy data and fabricated reality. I used to soak up any kind of science, but I am now learning to be more skeptical. Beginning with quantum mechanics theory in the ’20’s, we’ve been asked to accept a lot of hooey in the name of science. Quantum mechanics took Newtonian physics, added a lot of mathematical spin to it and alleged they had founded a new science. Like crap they did. They have obfuscated reality out of all proportion, and as David Bohm said, one of the top physicists in QM, it has reached the end of the road. Even Feynman admitted it worked, but that he couldn’t explain why.

    I think a lot of sciences are in the same boat. The entire field of retrovirology has been challenged by German biologists Stefan Lanka, who is also questioning whether many popular viruses were ever isolated. He has convinced German parents to be cautious about vaccination programs. Now we are being inundated with bad science from climatologists. It’s about time we stood back and started questioning everything we ‘know’. As a product of memory, knowledge is prone to bias and distortion. That’s especially true when disciplines are developed as models and not based on real observation.

  21. Gordon Robertson December 19, 2008 at 3:21 pm #

    Addendum to my recent post. Just came across this interesting interview with geophysicist J. Marvin Herndon:

    http://www.spacedaily.com/news/earth-03k.html

    They are discussing the nuclear reactor in the Earth’s core, and its variability. Herndon has this to say,

    “Questions that scientists should begin thinking about are whether such variable energy output for the earth can be detected and how might it affect the surface regions of our planet. Is the El Nino, for example, affected by such variability??? Ice ages??? I am not suggesting that they are, but one should keep an open mind. For example, in models of global warming, the heat flux from the interior is ASSUMED to be constant.

    Is it? These are questions that scientists should address”.

    My, my, my. Some climate scientists do make a lot of assumptions. Physicists Gerlich and Tscheuschner have tried to point out the assumptions made about ‘net energy balances’, Botzmann’s constant, blackbody radiators and the heat absorption/radiative abilities of CO2. Now a geophysicist is asking if El Nino might have connections to the Earth’s core.

    He’s only asking.

  22. Ninderthana December 19, 2008 at 3:28 pm #

    Grendel,

    If you want to be pedantic it’s:

    It’s a ‘terawatt’ – not a terra-watt. – with an apostrophe

    not

    “Its a ‘terawatt’ – not a terra-watt.”

    I may as well join in wit everyone else in discussing the minutiae – since no one
    else seems to want to discuss the science.

  23. SJT December 19, 2008 at 4:03 pm #

    “So supply the basic design parameter for a GCM please to substantiate your allegation. Easy enough to disprove me by supplying evidence of the model design.”
    I’ve already given you a link to the source code for a GCM. You weren’t interested in looking at it.

  24. SJT December 19, 2008 at 4:26 pm #

    ““Questions that scientists should begin thinking about are whether such variable energy output for the earth can be detected and how might it affect the surface regions of our planet. Is the El Nino, for example, affected by such variability??? Ice ages??? I am not suggesting that they are, but one should keep an open mind. For example, in models of global warming, the heat flux from the interior is ASSUMED to be constant.

    Is it? These are questions that scientists should address”.”

    Hint. Have a look at the magnitude of the heat flux coming from the earth and compare it to the heat flux from the sun.

    The question has already been looked at. It’s a non issue.

  25. Louis Hissink December 19, 2008 at 4:52 pm #

    SJT,

    Careful, you just got out of your depth – but instead of arguing from authority, how about specific evidence to back your unsubstatiated statements here.

  26. Louis Hissink December 19, 2008 at 4:56 pm #

    Gordon,

    a nuclear reactor in the wearth’s core? Jeepers, not much lateral thinking going on, is there.

    SJT – hint, do some homework on the Super Deep Hole drilled by the Russians on the Kola Pensinsula and explain to us here how the geophysicists got the thermal gradient horribly wrong from their assumptions based on the heat flow data of the earth’s surface.

    And while you are at it, also explain how a thermal surge can occur deep down ~ 250 km to produce mantle melting to produce kimberlite eruptions, as well as continental flood basalts.

    Don’t bother with plate tectonics as that hypothesis has failed.

  27. janama December 19, 2008 at 5:32 pm #

    Here’s good coverage of why the oceans are warming from below.

    http://www.iceagenow.com/Ocean_Warming.htm

  28. Louis Hissink December 19, 2008 at 7:15 pm #

    janama

    Excellent – the problem is what drives the undersea volcanoes and etc – no longer plate tectonics of course. Radioactivity can’t supply the mechanism as it is a diminishing energy source since it is assumed that all radioactive materials were originally formed when the earth formed, (apart from C14 which is another matter and not a heat source in the crust).

    Note that Luke, AKA Lamprey, says I am wrong, as does his doppleganger, SJT, but neither can come up with evidence.

    Given the recent discovery of Flux Tube Events in the earth’s ionosphere, the well known Birkeland currents entering the earth poles via the auroras, (they only light up when the plasma mode jumps to glow mode from dark current mode), then the source of the Earth’s internal heat may well be due to the passage of electric currents through the matter comprising the upper mantle,

    As for the idea that the earth’s core is at 5000 Kelvin, that is a guess based on heat flow measurements which we now know are incapable of predicting the temperature 10,000 metres down (Kola Pensinsula super deep hole project). It cannot be from in situ measurement, and is based on the equally unproven and totally unscientific belief that the earth formed from accretion 4,500 million years ago, and has been cooling ever since.

    And consider the localised thermal anomaly responsible for the PDO etc.

    Sorry Lamprey, all your bluster cannot counter the logical conclusion that the only force left to supply the eneryy “down there” has to be electricity.

    That said, I am not being dogmatic about this either – since we know so little about “down there” under our feet, but right now, from rejecting radioactivity, what else is left to power volcanoes and other igneous activity under the oceans and the earth’s surface?

    Oh, that’s right, CO2 emission from the atmosphere.

  29. Luke December 19, 2008 at 8:02 pm #

    More unbelievably stupid comments from sinkers – I suppose it’s too much to ask for him to actually acquaint himself with GCMs as opposed to making frigging stupid ill-informed comments.
    What a dick.

    As for volcanism – LOL – pity the evidence says warming top down – ho hum. More fairy stories for science wannabes.

    Anyway sinkers give us an intelligent comment on this http://www.clivar.org/organization/southern/SO4talks/SO_WAP.ppt

  30. Louis Hissink December 19, 2008 at 8:04 pm #

    Lamprey

    First of all supply the GCM model design here.

  31. SJT December 19, 2008 at 8:49 pm #

    “Note that Luke, AKA Lamprey, says I am wrong, as does his doppleganger, SJT, but neither can come up with evidence.”

    I gave you a link to the source code for a GCM. You declined to look at it.

  32. Luke December 19, 2008 at 9:24 pm #

    How sinkers are you that pathetic that you can’t sort that out yourself. How do you find your way to the shop mate? Jeez you must be stoopid.

    In any case you’re a bad faith debater – you’ll only ever come back with quips so as long as you show bad faith do your own library work.

    I gave you something above. I await an intelligent comment.

  33. Michelle December 19, 2008 at 9:57 pm #

    Wow, what a lot of science! Thank you to commenters for including the links for other readers to research.

    However, from one extreme to the other – some basic observational data – observed from data on scientific organisations websites that is.

    The University of Colorado website has some interesting maps showing sea level rises in different areas. Refer http://sealevel.colorado.edu/maps.php

    This map shows sea levels have risen more in some areas than others. The IPCC surface temperature change map shows temperature increases are greatest at areas close to the north pole, and temperature rises graduating to lesser, even decreases, in areas close to the south pole. This pattern clearly does not match the sea level rise maps.

    The USGS has maps showing areas of seismic activity. Refer http://neic.usgs.gov/neis/qed/

    There is a correlation between the areas of under sea seismic activity and areas of greatest sea level rise.

    Jennifer’s blog post “Dip in global sea level won’t save Tuvalu” on 9 December 2008 referred to the reason for sea inundation on islands such as Tuvalu being due to the islands sinking due to cooling of their volcanic base.

    More very basic observational data. I live in the middle of the largest sea level rise hot spot and I am a scuba diver. I have been on dives where the under water temperature is higher than the surface air temperature (as per my dive computer). And these are open water dives to around 30 metres, not lake or shallow bay dives.

    It seems logical that the explanation for the sea level rise hot spots is associated with the cause of seismic activity – weaknesses or faults in the earth’s crust which allow heat from the earth’s core to convect into the sea in those areas.

    Tidal activity doesn’t explain these sea level rise hot spots as per “long-term variations in solar/lunar tides control inter-decadal ocean surface temperatures by influencing the rate of up-whelming of cold deep-water”. Hot water rises, cold water sinks – same as air.

    Nor does the suggestion that tidal activity causes warmer water to be trapped in the western Pacific hold water. The main areas of sea level rise hot spots are where there are openings between land masses to the west, and lesser sea level rises are associated with the areas closer to large land masses.

    CO2 does not explain all of the natural phenomena we are observing and experiencing.

  34. sod December 19, 2008 at 11:00 pm #

    could you guys please decide, whether the temperature changes are caused by a cosmic flux, causing LESS UPWELLING of COOL water

    or by volcanoes, >UPWELLING MORE HOT water

    all your arguments are of course false. but it is pretty hard to argue against them, when they are even contradicting each other!!!!

  35. SJT December 20, 2008 at 4:21 am #

    “all your arguments are of course false. but it is pretty hard to argue against them, when they are even contradicting each other!!!!”

    That’s the beauty of being a denier, you can accept any theory, except AGW.

  36. Gordon Robertson December 20, 2008 at 10:24 am #

    Louis “As for the idea that the earth’s core is at 5000 Kelvin, that is a guess based on heat flow measurements which we now know are incapable of predicting the temperature 10,000 metres down…”

    According to the EAPS group at MIT (same department as Lindzen), they are able to determine the temperatures using new imaging techniques.

    http://web.mit.edu/newsoffice/2007/mantle.html

    As far as the radioactivity is concerned, it’s not the first time I’ve heard that radioactive processes near the core generate huge amounts of heat. In the article I posted in my last post, they say this, “For ten years, geophysicist J. Marvin Herndon has presented increasingly persuasive evidence that at the very centre of the Earth, within the inner core, there exists a five mile in diameter sphere of uranium which acts as a natural nuclear reactor”. Herndon calls it a georeactor.

    Being in the electrical field, I have no problem with your electrical theories. Grounding to the Earth relies on return paths for current through materials that are essentially insulators. I am aware that tremendous amounts of charges are blown out by the Sun and do interact with the atmosphere. Why they would randomly flow in the crust or mantle is beyond my understanding. I’m not saying they don’t, I’m just saying it’s not something I would understand from basic electrical theory.

    We take it for granted that lighting strikes the Earth because of charge differences between the earth and the sky. Apparently, it’s not quite that simple. Small streamers of current have been noticed flowing from the ground to the sky before the main bolt hits. Many people have reported feeling lighting before it struck…if they lived, that is. Their hair stands up on end, literally. That means the air is charged…obviouly with electrical charges.

    If your theory is sound, I would assume the charges from space are finding a way into the Earth’s crust. If they built up in a region, say at the North Pole, they would have to find a way to neutralize, so they would spread out through the crust. One problem is that current from charges, flowing through a resistance, create a voltage gradient. That’s why you can be zotted by lighting, even if it doesn’t hit you. The high currents entering the ground due to charges, create a potential gradient around the entry point. That gradient can be several thousand volts (step-potential), generated in circles arounf the entry point, and if you are standing across such a gradient, you will either be dead, or speaking in a high voice.

    If there is such an induced potential from charges entering the surface, you would think they would have been noticed. Then again, no one has probably been looking for them.

    BTW…if caught in a lightning storm, one suggestion is to crouch near the Earth with both feet together. When I lived on the prairies, where lighting is scary (sounds like canon fire, at times), a guy got bored sitting in his car (the safest place) till the storm passed. He decided to run a few feet to his house. He is no longer with us. It amazes me the chances people take with lightning.

  37. Gordon Robertson December 20, 2008 at 11:08 am #

    Louis…just came across this Wiki article on telluric currents:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Telluric_current

  38. Louis HIssink December 20, 2008 at 7:45 pm #

    Gordon,

    The idea that radioactive processes are responsible for the assumed core temperature is not based on anything but preconditioned guesses. Why do we need to assume that the earth’s core is hot?

    As for electric charges reaching the earth’s surface, you will need to understand the three plasma modes –

    1. Dark current mode where nothing is seen – but a good example is one of those electric air ionisers that create a mini-breeze. The solar wind is another example of electric currents operating in dark current mode. Of course the electric flow in the wires powering our electric heaters and kettles are also similar examples.

    2. Glow mode – a sharp transition when the current creases in power and excites matter – Flurorescent lighting, plasma tv’s are typical examples.

    3. Arc mode – another sharp transition from the glow mode – lightning is one example.

    Incidentally the earth’s electric field, during quiescence, has a voltage gradient of 100 V per vertical meter.

    Seems we are surrounded by electrical forces but are totally oblivious to them unless hit by a lightning bolt. Incidentally a lightning bolt is simply a dark mode electric current, (which we cannot see) being overloaded to cause the familiar lightining display.

    I must also fess up that these ideas are not mine at all – I am a simple messenger. I merely deliver mail for some big gun plasma people who wish to remain anonymous and employed. So I don’t mind the flak I cop on this issue.

    The only original idea I have had is to propose the mechanism of kimberlite diatreme formation – yet to be published in a peer reviewed journal since the hypothesis needs more work.

    Your comments about fluctuations in the earth’s electric field prior to a lightning bolt are interesting as well. It would be interesting to see if NASA have measured the electric field of Mars – because of the fact that its atmosphere is so tenuous that the observed dust devils, reaching vertical heights of kilometers above the Martian surface cannot be explained by the fluid behavior of its atmosphere.

    I also am toying around with the idea that gravity is an electrical phenomenon – and this is not my muse as well- others more competent in physics and plasma precede me, but as Galileo showed with his famous Tower of Pisa experiment, matters not whether a 1cm sphere of aluminum or 10 cm of lead are dropped, both reach the earth’s surface at the same time.

    My explanation involves reducing both spheres into their atomic composition – essentially both are comprised of protons (+/- neutrons) and electrons. The difference between Al and Pb is the charge density per unit volume with Pb having a higher one.

    BUT, whether you have one proton or a billion, their movement in an electrical field would be the same.

    I’ll leave it here for you, and others, to think about it.

    PS – I had an unnerving experience 1 year ago on a drilling operation near Whim Creek (Pilbara Coast, West Oz)) near Roebourne. About 3 pm the driller noticed that the drill rig suddenly became electrically charged to such an extent that he was getting electric shocks. Immediate procedure was to raise the drill string so that the last rod could be unscrewed, (the rest left down hole, so that the rig mast could be lowered into travel mode, ie horizontal. The we go back to camp and drink hot weather stimulants rather than rum, a good cold weather stimulant. 🙂

    🙂

  39. Louis Hissink December 20, 2008 at 8:02 pm #

    SJT:

    “So supply the basic design parameter for a GCM please to substantiate your allegation. Easy enough to disprove me by supplying evidence of the model design.”
    I’ve already given you a link to the source code for a GCM. You weren’t interested in looking at it.”

    No you have not. Ever.

  40. Ninderthana December 21, 2008 at 10:37 am #

    Here is the original article making the claim that tidal mixing of the oceans is an
    important factor mitigating climate:

    http://www.space.com/scienceastronomy/planetearth/tide_energy_000627.html

    For the original commentor sod,

    The ocean surface layers are directly heated by the Sun. The mixing processes in the ocean
    mix (stir) this heat into the deeper ocean and so they indirectly influence the sea surface temperatures. Thus, the the surface temperatures influence the air temperatures over the continents.

    So you should have written:

    What warms up the surface of the soup? – It is the amount of stirring!

  41. Ninderthana December 21, 2008 at 10:57 am #

    Sod,

    That should have read:

    What ocassionally cools the surface of the soup [that is being heat from the top]?
    – It is the amount of stirring!

    Here is another supporting article from the late Charlse Keeling:

    http://www.pnas.org/content/94/16/8321.full

    Possible forcing of global temperature by the oceanic tides
    Charles D. Keeling and Timothy P. Whorf
    +Author Affiliations

    Scripps Institution of Oceanography, University of California, San Diego, La Jolla, CA, 92093-0220

    Abstract

    An approximately decadal periodicity in surface air temperature is discernable in global observations from A.D. 1855 to 1900 and since A.D. 1945, but with a periodicity of only about 6 years during the intervening period. Changes in solar irradiance related to the sunspot cycle have been proposed to account for the former, but cannot account for the latter. To explain both by a single mechanism, we propose that extreme oceanic tides may produce changes in sea surface temperature at repeat periods, which alternate between approximately one-third and one-half of the lunar nodal cycle of 18.6 years. These alternations, recurring at nearly 90-year intervals, reflect varying slight degrees of misalignment and departures from the closest approach of the Earth with the Moon and Sun at times of extreme tide raising forces. Strong forcing, consistent with observed temperature periodicities, occurred at 9-year intervals close to perihelion (solar perigee) for several decades centered on A.D. 1881 and 1974, but at 6-year intervals for several decades centered on A.D. 1923. As a physical explanation for tidal forcing of temperature we propose that the dissipation of extreme tides increases vertical mixing of sea water, thereby causing episodic cooling near the sea surface. If this mechanism correctly explains near-decadal temperature periodicities, it may also apply to variability in temperature and climate on other times-scales, even millennial and longer.

  42. Ninderthana December 21, 2008 at 10:57 am #

    Sod,

    That should have read:

    What ocassionally cools the surface of the soup [that is being heated from the top]?
    – It is the amount of stirring!

    Here is another supporting article from the late Charlse Keeling:

    http://www.pnas.org/content/94/16/8321.full

    Possible forcing of global temperature by the oceanic tides
    Charles D. Keeling and Timothy P. Whorf
    +Author Affiliations

    Scripps Institution of Oceanography, University of California, San Diego, La Jolla, CA, 92093-0220

    Abstract

    An approximately decadal periodicity in surface air temperature is discernable in global observations from A.D. 1855 to 1900 and since A.D. 1945, but with a periodicity of only about 6 years during the intervening period. Changes in solar irradiance related to the sunspot cycle have been proposed to account for the former, but cannot account for the latter. To explain both by a single mechanism, we propose that extreme oceanic tides may produce changes in sea surface temperature at repeat periods, which alternate between approximately one-third and one-half of the lunar nodal cycle of 18.6 years. These alternations, recurring at nearly 90-year intervals, reflect varying slight degrees of misalignment and departures from the closest approach of the Earth with the Moon and Sun at times of extreme tide raising forces. Strong forcing, consistent with observed temperature periodicities, occurred at 9-year intervals close to perihelion (solar perigee) for several decades centered on A.D. 1881 and 1974, but at 6-year intervals for several decades centered on A.D. 1923. As a physical explanation for tidal forcing of temperature we propose that the dissipation of extreme tides increases vertical mixing of sea water, thereby causing episodic cooling near the sea surface. If this mechanism correctly explains near-decadal temperature periodicities, it may also apply to variability in temperature and climate on other times-scales, even millennial and longer.

  43. J.Hansford. December 22, 2008 at 2:35 am #

    ….. For those wondering what the energy budget attributed to the atmosphere from terrestial heat sources is…. I believe the IPCC put it at 0.8 of a watt….. within their black body equation….

    Just interesting that the IPCC recognizes that geological processes warm the atmosphere… therefore they must concede the fact that they heat the oceans as well…..

  44. Gordon Robertson December 22, 2008 at 9:59 am #

    J. Hansford “….. For those wondering what the energy budget attributed to the atmosphere from terrestial heat sources is…. I believe the IPCC put it at 0.8 of a watt….. within their black body equation….”

    There’s a slight problem with that. Neither the atmosphere nor the land masses are blackbody radiators, or anywhere near them. Boltzman’s constant does not apply. But, hey, why let a little bit of science obfuscation ruin a good ‘theory’.

  45. ed December 26, 2008 at 4:29 pm #

    RE: Janama and Lake Superior
    The article you site from 2007 made statements about Lake Superior that are not true and are not supported by the study linked in the article. At no time in 2007 or 2008 did Lake Superior meet or exceed a record low water level. In fact for all of 2008, water levels were very close to the the Long Term average which is about 15 to 20 inches more than the record low.

    In addition, the study the article is based on made no statements about any of the other great lakes and only found a 2 degree increase in overall temperature up until the year 2004. Lake Superior temperatures have fallen again since 2005. Temperature is based on ice cover and 2007 saw a return to more normal levels and 2008 is also projected to have more ice than 2007 thus reducing temperature again from the 2005 levels.

  46. ed December 26, 2008 at 4:39 pm #

    Janama
    From the July 2005 Detroit News after the release of the study you cite:

    “Experts say the trend doesn’t provide proof of global warming theories, but may point to the extremes of natural weather cycles.”

    From David Schwab, director of the Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory in Ann Arbor”
    “It seems the last four or five years, perhaps the last decade, have been a little bit warmer,” Schwab said. “Whether that is something that will continue, we don’t know. It may simply be part of a 10-year, or even a 100-year, cycle.”

  47. Rob Warren February 27, 2009 at 7:34 pm #

    I have always maintained that “if” there is global warming the ocean is responsible and i belive i know why.

    Simply there are now many more whales since the 70’s and they are depleting the plankton, this is allowing the sun to enter the water, heat the water.

Website by 46digital