fredag 15 oktober 2010

Fourier and his Greenhouse Effect

Joseph Fourier (1768-1830 ) in his grave, still very much present in IPCC.

CO2 climate alarmism is based on an atmospheric "greenhouse effect" attributed to the mathematician Joseph Fourier (1768-1830) as described in General Remarks of the Temperature of the Terrestial Globe and the Planetary Spaces from 1824:
  • The heat of the earth is derived from three sources:
  • The earth is heated by solar rays.
  • It partakes of the common temperature of the planetary spaces; being exposed to innumerable stars which surround the solar system.
  • The earth preserves in its interior a part of that primitive heat which it had at the time of the first formation of the planets.
  • The interposition of the air very modifies the effects of the upon the surface of the globe. The solar rays traversing the atmospheric strata which are condensed by their own weight, heat them very unequally: those which are rarest are likewise coldest because they extinguish and absorb a smaller part of the rays. The heat of the sun coming in in the form of light, possesses the property of penetrating transparent solids or liquids, and loses this property entirely, when by communicating with terrestial bodies, it is turned into heat radiating without light.
  • This distinction between luminous and non-luminous heat, explains the elevation of temperature by transparent bodies. The mass of waters which cover a great part of the globe, and the oceans of the polar regions, oppose a less obstacle to the admission of luminous heat, than to the heat without light which returns in a contrary direction to open space.
  • The pressure of the atmosphere produces an effect of the same kind: but an effect, which, in the present state of the theory, and from want of observations compared with each other, cannot be exactly defined.
  • We see that the surface of the terrestial globe is placed between a solid mass, the central part of which may surpass that of matter heated to whiteness, and an immense girdle, whose temperature is below that requisite for the congelation of mercury.
  • It is difficult to know how far the atmosphere influences the mean temperature of the globe, and in this examination we are no longer guided by regular mathematical theory. It is to the celebrated traveller M. de Saussure that we are indebted for capital experiment, which appears to throw light on this question.
  • The experiment consists of exposing to the rays of the sun a vessel covered with one or more plates of glass, very transparent and placed with some distance one upon the other. The interior of the vessel is furnished with a thick covering of black cork, proper for receiving and preserving heat. The heated air is contained in all parts both in the interior of the vessel and in between the plates. Thermometers placed in the vessel itself and in the intervals above, mark the degrees of heat in each space. This instrument was placed in the sun about noon and the thermometer in the vessel was seen to rise 70, 80, 100, 110 (Reaumur) and upwards. The thermometers placed in between the glass plates indicated much lower degrees of heat, and the heat decreased form the bottom of the vessel to the highest interval.
  • The theory of the instrument is easily understood. It is sufficient to remark, 1st, that the acquired heat is concentrated because it is not dissipated by renewing the air; 2d, that the best of the sun, has properties different from those of heat without light. The rays of that body are transmitted in considerable quantity through the glass plates into all the intervals, even to the bottom of the vessel. They heat the air and the partitions which contain it. Their heat thus communicated ceases to be luminous, and preserves only the properties of non-luminous heat. In this state it cannot pass through the plates covering the vessel.
This is the supposed original scientific basis of IPCC CO2 climate alarmism. We see that
Fourier presents a simplistic theory of a glasshouse with, 1st, blocking of convection and, 2d, radiative heating. Fourier combines this with confused ideas of heating from the interior of the earth and all the stars. No mathematical formulas are presented, only vague ideas in words. The step from Saussure's little experiment to the Earth with atmosphere is immense.

Fourier documents some understanding of blackbody radiation, but altogether he describes a rudimentary and largely incorrect science. Nevertheless, Fourier could have had a leading position in IPCC if he had been present today, since IPCC climate science is built on Fourier's "greenhouse theory", essentially in its original rudimentary confused form presented above.

Compare with Geologist about the missing science of any "greenhouse effect" and the myth of backradiation.

3 kommentarer:

  1. Thanks, Professor Johnson.

    Somewhere I read also about experiments conducted with a prism and a thermometer to see which color in sunlight caused heating.

    Much to the surprise of the experimenter, the heat effect was greatest when the light was invisible! That was how IR radiation was discovered.

    Regarding the UN's IPCC and the army of climatologists receiving public funds to study global warming, it is absolutely incredible that they paid so little attention to Earth's heat source - the Sun.

    The Sun is a variable star, and we now have a good idea why. That is summarized in this introduction to a four-part video series:

    With kind regards,
    Oliver K. Manuel
    Former NASA Principal
    Investigator for Apollo

  2. There is an interesting passage that caught my attention

    "The pressure of the atmosphere produces an effect of the same kind: but an effect, which, in the present state of the theory, and from want of observations compared with each other, cannot be exactly defined."

    Fourier could of course not know anything of the subsequent discoveries of Maxwell and Compton, that tells us that light which is absorbed or reflected exerts a pressure in the direction of its propagation.

    There are two fundamental laws of physics that have survived since the time of Newton and remains rigorously verified independent of any metaphysical interpretation of matter and light, those are:

    Law of Conservation of Momentum
    Law of conservation of Energy

    A gas at nonzero temperature always exerts a pressure on its surrounding. The origin of these forces are microscopic collisions mediated by electromagnetic forces. These forces may act on a short distance or a longer distance, but the fundamental preservation laws remain valid. The reason why the pressure is maintained in our atmosphere is gravity. Gravity prevents the atmosphere from escaping into space and thus it must be incorporated as a heating parameter in any atmospheric model.

    In essence, even if the radiative greenhouse hypothesis were valid, it would have to be a pressure effect, and hence the problem formulated by Fourier remains unsolved and has so been up to this day.

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