Another amazingly snowy winter for the U.S.

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 3:18 PM GMT on February 11, 2011

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As northeast Oklahoma and northwest Arkansas dig out from the two feet of snow dumped this winter's latest epic snowstorm, it's time to summarize how remarkable the snows of the past two winters have been. So far this winter, the Northeast U.S. has seen three Category 3 (major) or higher snow storms on the Northeast Snowfall Impact (NESIS) scale. This scale, which rates Northeast snowstorms by the area affected by the snowstorm, the amount of snow, and the number of people living in the path of the storm, runs from Category 1 (Notable) to Category 5 (Crippling.) This puts the winter of 2010 - 2011 in a tie for first place with the winters of 2009 - 2010 and 1960 - 1961 for most major Northeast snowstorms. All three of these winters had an extreme configuration of surface pressures over the Arctic and North Atlantic referred to as a negative North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO) and Arctic Oscillation (AO). In this situation, the band of winds that circles the North Pole weakens, allowing cold air to spill southwards into the mid-latitudes.

In the past twelve months, we've had six major Category 3 or stronger storms on the NESIS scale, by far the most major snowstorms in a 12-month period in the historical record. Going back to 1956, only one 12-month period had as many as four major snowstorms--during 1960 - 1961. New York City has seen three of its top-ten snowstorms and the two snowiest months in its 142-year history during the past 12 months--February 2010 (36.9") and January 2011 (36.0"). Philadelphia has seen four of its top-ten snowstorm in history the past two winters. The Midwest has not been left out of the action this year, either--the Groundhog's Day blizzard nailed Chicago with its 3rd biggest snowstorm on record. According to the National Climatic Data Center, December 2010 saw the 7th greatest U.S. snow extent for the month in the 45-year record, and January 2011 the 5th most. December 2009 had the greatest snow extent for the month in the 45-year record, January 2010 the 6th most, and February 2010 the 3rd most. Clearly, the snows of the past two winters in the U.S. have been truly extraordinary.


Figure 1. The six major Category 3 Northeast snowstorms of the past twelve months. Image credit: National Climatic Data Center.

A cold January in the U.S.
January 2011 was the coldest January in the contiguous U.S. since 1994, according to the National Climatic Data Center, and ranked as the 37th coldest January in the 117-year record. Despite the heavy snows in the Northeast U.S., January was the 9th driest January since 1895. This was largely due to the fact that the Desert Southwest was very dry, with New Mexico recording its driest January, and Arizona and Nevada their second driest.

A cold and record snowy winter (yet again!) in the U.S. does not prove or disprove the existence of climate change or global warming, as we must instead focus on global temperatures averaged over decades. Globally, January 2011 was the 11th warmest since 1880, but tied for the second coolest January of the past decade, according to NASA. NOAA has not yet released their stats for January. The cool-down in global temperatures since November 2010, which was the warmest November in the historical record, is largely due to the temporary cooling effect of the strong La Niña event occurring in the Eastern Pacific. This event has cooled a large portion of the surface waters in the Pacific, leading to a cooler global temperature.

Some posts of interest I've done on snow and climate change over the past year:

Hot Arctic-Cold Continents Pattern is back (December 2010)
The future of intense winter storms (March 2010)
Heavy snowfall in a warming world (February 2010)

Have a great weekend, everyone, and enjoy the coming warm-up, those of you in the eastern 2/3 of the country!

Jeff Masters

Snow and icicle sun (emilinetdd)
Snow and icicle sun
Cardinal City (dypepper)
Another exciting day for me, shooting the Cardinals in the Snow!
Cardinal City

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Quoting misanthrope:

Sorry Sonny, but we're talking about what aggieboy calls himself, not what he actually does. Again, you want me to post the details of his life here?


??? I didn't call myself anything.

*EDIT: Oh, you didn't mean me.
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According to the United States National Center for Education Statistics, "scientific literacy is the knowledge and understanding of scientific concepts and processes required for personal decision making, participation in civic and cultural affairs, and economic productivity".

The scientifically literate person possesses the capability to:
  • Understand experiment and reasoning as well as basic scientific facts and their meaning
  • Ask, find, or determine answers to questions derived from curiosity about everyday experiences
  • Describe, explain, and predict natural phenomena
  • Read with understanding articles about science in the popular press and to engage in social conversation about the validity of the conclusions
  • Identify scientific issues underlying national and local decisions and express positions that are scientifically and technologically informed
  • Evaluate the quality of scientific information on the basis of its source and the methods used to generate it
  • Pose and evaluate arguments based on evidence and apply conclusions from such arguments appropriately
It seems to me that such scientific literacy is what's missing here. The fact of the matter is, not a single study has been published in the last 20 years that refutes these three basic points: AGW is real, it's caused mostly by us, and it's bad. I really and truly would like those who call themselves "skeptics" to produce a study that disproves any of those three points. Failing that--which they most assuredly will--I wish they'd stop their tedious talking and start reading the copious actual science in support of the theory to be found on actual science websites. If they did that, we could get back to having some intelligent and grown-up conversations here. To get everyone going, here's a great starter list:

--IPCC
--NAS
--AAAS
--RealClimate
--USGCRP
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Quoting misanthrope:

And I think of myself as a technologist. I'd never refer to myself as a scientist - how about you?

BTW - sounds like you're making a threat. I thought you Canadians were peaceful folks.



I am a Canadian.. I don't "make" threats.

So, who can be can be called a Scientist?

If you study a system, collect verifiable data, form testable hypotheses about the system's properties, and evaluate those hypotheses objectively, then you are arguably practicing science . Usually "scientists" are associated with the study of naturally-occurring physical and biological systems, but it is commonly assumed that human cultural systems (such as religion, politics, society, or business) can be studied scientifically as well.

Of course, it is also widely believed that "social" scientists have generally been much less successful than "natural" scientists, and the principles that govern human cultural systems remain poorly understood at best.

In practice, the title of "scientist" is almost completely unregulated, and anyone can legally claim it, regardless of education or profession. In some states, you could be restricted from using titles like "soil scientist" or "wetlands scientist" due to licensing rules.


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1295. Patrap
Ping Pong comes to mind.

Pu-kup,,puh-kup..

Bounce,bounce,bounce..
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 427 Comments: 129441
Getting pretty close to landfall now:

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Quoting Orcasystems:


Watch where you are going with this line of thought... I am a certified Technologist, Technician, and PMI Operations Manager.

I have no idea what your qualifications are, other the stirring a pot that has already stopped spinning.

And I think of myself as a technologist. I'd never refer to myself as a scientist - how about you?

BTW - sounds like you're making a threat. I thought you Canadians were peaceful folks.

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1290. Levi32
Quoting 1900hurricane:
Intriguing!



Sweet. Just in time for Madagascar too. At least they don't have to deal with a well-formed inner eye wall.
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Intriguing!

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1288. Levi32
Quoting JohnTucker:
Also IPCC projections are based in several studies - Not the IPCC itself. Everything is referenced.

You guys cant even get past that one simple fact.


Lol? Duh? What relevance does that have to the point of the material I posted.
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1286. Levi32
Quoting misanthrope:

Oh, the applied sciences. So that makes you either an engineer, a technologist or a technician. Or an operational administrator? Whatever the heck that is. Certainly not a scientist. And, of course, we know you're not an engineer. So is it technologist or technician?

Otherwise, maybe you can answer a question for me - why in the world would I be threatened by the likes of you? Are you saying I should be? Are you sending Carlena after me. Or maybe that crazy brother of hers? Actually, he does scare me. But I wonder what, exactly, are you planning to do?

If it's OK with you, I'll hold off on shaking in my boots until I get some details.









Oh but I thought you knew all the details of Atmo's occupation. Guess I was right that you don't. Your earlier accusation of him not being a scientist is therefore not justified.
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Uh ohhh.Again read comment 1269#.I'm sure some people would agree....
Member Since: August 14, 2010 Posts: 10 Comments: 17654
By the way,

Evening Everyone! :)
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1282. Levi32
Quoting JohnTucker:
Its going to be interesting to watch the Denial Community here track hurricanes with direct observation as the models use much of the same science, mathematical mechanics. and the exact same methodology, reason as Climate Science. Not to mention many products are usually "adjusted" for GW.

As well as may of the same professionals are involved in both endeavors.



But im sure they will be able to provide the best reference-able hurricane tracks. AS a matter of fact we should immediately ditch the models and all indirect methods and let those affected lives depend directly on the denialists.

Like we do with climate.


Hurricane models are tools to be used as an aid to forecasting, but they are horribly wrong a good deal of the time. Climate models are no different, and given the massive scale which they are asked to predict, they must be taken with scrutiny and grains of salt when it comes to century time-scale predictions.

Nobody is suggesting that we throw away computer models. That is a word you are putting in our mouths.
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Quoting CybrTeddy:
..aarrgg I was hoping to not have to move my finger to the ignore button until the season.


Yeah, I see it has gotten ugly today! First time I have checked in for the past few days. They are honing their skills for hurricane season I guess.
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Quoting misanthrope:

Oh, the applied sciences. So that makes you either an engineer, a technologist or a technician. Or an operational administrator? Certainly not a scientist. And, of course, we know you're not an engineer. So is it technologist or technician?

Otherwise, maybe you can answer a question for me - why in the world would I be threatened by the likes of you? Are you saying I should be? Are you sending Carlena after me. Or maybe that crazy brother of hers? Actually, he does scare me. But I wonder what, exactly, are you planning to do?

If it's OK with you, I'll hold off on shaking in my boots until I get some details.









Watch where you are going with this line of thought... I am a certified Technologist, Technician, and PMI Operations Manager.

I have no idea what your qualifications are, other the stirring a pot that has already stopped spinning.
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1279. Patrap
String Theory is NOT related to String Cheese.

Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 427 Comments: 129441
1278. Levi32
Quoting JohnTucker:
Levi same methodology. Same statistics.

Different dish, same buffet. How do you think those are made?

That how science works and why adherence to reason is a universal requirement.


What is your point? Nobody is debating how the models are created.
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1276. Skyepony (Mod)
Quoting bappit:
Recent trends in the observations and models do not offer many hints on which outcome is more likely. Also, model skill is historically at a minimum during the Northern Hemisphere spring (the "spring barrier").

So the ENSO is more chaotic in the northern hemisphere spring.


Region 1,2 going neutral speaks volumes & ESPI is up 30 this week too. That huge hot spot south of there, the build up of the South's summer, the circulation coming up the west side of South America has hinted at wanting to draw it up toward the equator. I can't see us not getting to atleast neutral conditions this summer. Could go either way again next fall/winter.

Do have to agree with the finally expecting La Nina weather. There is always that lag & it was such a quick, deep switch.

Expected La Niña impacts during February-April 2011 include suppressed convection over the west-central tropical Pacific Ocean, and enhanced convection over Indonesia. Potential impacts in the United States include an enhanced chance of above-average precipitation in the Northern Rockies and western regions of the Northern Plains (along with a concomitant increase in snowfall), Great Lakes, and Ohio Valley. Below-average precipitation is favored across much of the southern states. An increased chance of below-average temperatures is predicted for much of the West Coast and northern tier of states (excluding New England), and a higher possibility of above-average temperatures is forecast for much of the southern and central U.S. (see 3-month seasonal outlook released on January 20th, 2011).


I'd say spring is more chaotic on La Nina, like fall is more chaotic on El Nino.
Member Since: August 10, 2005 Posts: 209 Comments: 39100
1273. Patrap

Fly Your Face in Space

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Later...Return to this site after launch to print your Flight Certificate - a commemorative certificate signed by the Mission Commander. You can also check on mission status, view mission photographs, link to various NASA educational resources and follow the commander and crew on Twitter or Facebook.
Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 427 Comments: 129441
.. I was hoping to not have to move my finger to the ignore button until the season.
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1271. Levi32
Quoting JohnTucker:


Are you prepared to give a referenced discussion of dynamic and statistical modeling with proofs and examples?

There is a science of model verification.

You are hardly a scientist if you don't BELIEVE in those.

Or is Statistics and more generally Mathematics itself now also going under the denial Axe?



Obviously you cant publish anything disputing the science so you question Amateurs to Prove your obscure case?



Can you fathom how dishonest that would seem as a argument?



I assume you will not be using the models available next hurricane season and look forward to seeing YOUR forecast track and evaluating it for accuracy.


The comparison was between IPCC projections and the XTRAP hurricane model, which is nothing more than trend continuation. That is exactly what the IPCC models look like as well with the various CO2 scenarios; a trend extrapolation. They don't look very dynamic, and do still lack the capability to properly model some of the major natural climate forcings.

For example, here are some things that the IPCC Fourth Assessment has to say about the models.

Regarding Atlantic Multidecadal Variability:

Atmosphere-Ocean General Circulation Models simulate Atlantic multi-decadal variability (e.g., Delworth et al., 1993; Latif, 1998 and references therein; Knight et al., 2005), and the simulated space-time structure is consistent with that observed (Delworth and Mann, 2000). The multi-decadal variability simulated by the AOGCMs originates from variations in the MOC (see Section 8.3). The mechanisms, however, that control the variations in the MOC are fairly different across the ensemble of AOGCMs. In most AOGCMs, the variability can be understood as a damped oceanic eigenmode that is stochastically excited by the atmosphere. In a few other AOGCMs, however, coupled interactions between the ocean and the atmosphere appear to be more important. The relative roles of high- and low-latitude processes differ also from model to model. The variations in the Atlantic SST associated with the multi-decadal variability appear to be predictable a few decades ahead, which has been shown by potential (diagnostic) and classical (prognostic) predictability studies. Atmospheric quantities do not exhibit predictability at decadal time scales in these studies, which supports the picture of stochastically forced variability.


Regarding ENSO:

During the last decade, there has been steady progress in simulating and predicting ENSO (see Chapters 3 and 9) and the related global variability using AOGCMs (Latif et al., 2001; Davey et al., 2002; AchutaRao and Sperber, 2002). Over the last several years the parametrized physics have become more comprehensive (Gregory et al., 2000; Collins et al., 2001; Kiehl and Gent, 2004), the horizontal and vertical resolutions, particularly in the atmospheric component models, have markedly increased (Guilyardi et al., 2004) and the application of observations in initialising forecasts has become more sophisticated (Alves et al., 2004). These improvements in model formulation have led to a better representation of the spatial pattern of the SST anomalies in the eastern Pacific (AchutaRao and Sperber, 2006). In fact, as an indication of recent model improvements, some IPCC class models are being used for ENSO prediction (Wittenberg et al., 2006). Despite this progress, serious systematic errors in both the simulated mean climate and the natural variability persist. For example, the so-called double-ITCZ problem noted by Mechoso et al. (1995; see Section 8.3.1) remains a major source of error in simulating the annual cycle in the tropics in most AOGCMs, which ultimately affects the fidelity of the simulated ENSO. Along the equator in the Pacific the models fail to adequately capture the zonal SST gradient, the equatorial cold tongue structure is equatorially confined and extends too far too to the west (Cai et al., 2003), and the simulations typically have thermoclines that are far too diffuse (Davey et al., 2002). Most AOGCMs fail to capture the meridional extent of the anomalies in the eastern Pacific and tend to produce anomalies that extend too far into the western tropical Pacific. Most, but not all, AOGCMs produce ENSO variability that occurs on time scales considerably faster than observed (AchutaRao and Sperber, 2002), although there has been some notable progress in this regard over the last decade (AchutaRao and Sperber, 2006) in that more models are consistent with the observed time scale for ENSO (see Figure 8.13). The models also have difficulty capturing the correct phase locking between the annual cycle and ENSO. Further, some AOGCMs fail to represent the spatial and temporal structure of the El Nino-La Nina asymmetry (Monahan and Dai, 2004). Other weaknesses in the simulated amplitude and structure of ENSO variability are discussed in Davey et al. (2002) and van Oldenborgh et al. (2005).


On the NAM and SAM:

Multi-model comparisons of winter atmospheric pressure (Osborn, 2004), winter temperature (Stephenson and Pavan, 2003) and atmospheric pressure across all months of the year (AchutaRao et al., 2004), including assessments of the MMD at PCMDI (Miller et al., 2006) confirm the overall skill of AOGCMs but also identify that teleconnections between the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans are stronger in many models than is observed (Osborn, 2004). In some models this is related to a bias towards a strong polar vortex in all winters so that their simulations nearly always reflect behaviour that is only observed at times with strong vortices (when a stronger Atlantic-Pacific correlation is observed; Castanheira and Graf, 2003).

Most AOGCMs organise too much sea level-pressure variability into the NAM and NAO (Miller et al., 2006). The year-to-year variance of the NAM or NAO is correctly simulated by some AOGCMs, while other simulations are significantly too variable (Osborn, 2004); for the models that simulate stronger variability, the persistence of anomalous states is greater than is observed (AchutaRao et al., 2004). The magnitude of multi-decadal variability (relative to sub-decadal variability) is lower in AOGCM control simulations than is observed, and cannot be reproduced in current model simulations with external forcings (Osborn, 2004; Gillett, 2005). However, Scaife et al. (2005) show that the observed multi-decadal trend in the surface NAM and NAO can be reproduced in an AOGCM if observed trends in the lower stratospheric circulation are prescribed in the model. Troposphere-stratosphere coupling processes may therefore need to be included in models to fully simulate NAM variability.

...

Although the spatial structure of the SAM is well simulated by the AOGCMs in the MMD at PCMDI, other features of the SAM, such as the amplitude, the detailed zonal structure and the temporal spectra, do not always compare well with the NCEP reanalysis SAM (Miller et al., 2006; Raphael and Holland, 2006). For example, Figure 8.12 shows that the simulated SAM variance (the square of the SAM amplitude) ranges between 0.9 and 2.4 times the NCEP reanalysis SAM variance. However, such features vary considerably among different realisations of multiple-member ensembles (Raphael and Holland, 2006), and the temporal variability of the NCEP reanalysis SAM does not compare well to station data (Marshall, 2003). Thus, it is difficult to assess whether these discrepancies between the simulated SAM and the NCEP reanalysis SAM point to shortcomings in the models or to shortcomings in the observed analysis.


These are just snippets of the descriptions of the climate models given by the IPCC Fourth Assessment Report. While the models of course cannot be expected to be perfect, we must not just forget that there are still major dynamical flaws that have to be addressed in such models.


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Sign.If the rest of winter does average 40 degree or above I can kiss my chance of another snow storm good-bye.Not fair dude not fair...
Member Since: August 14, 2010 Posts: 10 Comments: 17654
Just when you thought when they were done,gone,and forgotten they make an unwelcome come back.....We want a break from you all...
Member Since: August 14, 2010 Posts: 10 Comments: 17654
Xyrus, don't waste your time on RecordSeason. He doesn't listen to you, so why do you waste your time listening to him?

Hell he doesn't listen to anything, except the things that reflect what he wants to hear.
Member Since: August 24, 2010 Posts: 19 Comments: 4358
Is RecordSeason really trying to disprove dark matter?


Ahahahahaha oh my. Record, you have no idea what you are talking about.
Member Since: August 24, 2010 Posts: 19 Comments: 4358
Quoting RecordSeason:
To demonstrate, assume a world completely covered in sand and another world completely covered in asphalt. They will both receive the exact same amount of energy from the sun. However, the world covered in sand would be a world of extremes. During the day, the world of sand would be a blazing inferno. During the night it would be bitter cold, as all the heat from the day would radiate off very quickly.

On the other hand, the world covered in asphalt would be more moderated. It would heat up during the day, but it wouldn't get quite so hot since a larger amount of the sun's energy was being absorbed as opposed to being reflected. During the night, it would cool off more gradually as the stored heat of the day was gradually re-radiated into the atmosphere.


Actually, you're quite wrong.

The Albedo of an object is a measure of how much radiation it deflects. A perfect mirror would have a temperature of zero because it woudl absorb no radiation.

Deserts actually have a very high albedo because sand is quartz, glass with metallic impurities, which means they reflect light away from themselves, and consequently do not actually absorb much heat at all. Since the terrain does not absorb much heat it also does not heat the air through conduction.

The temperature extremes in deserts happen because deserts are arid. Dry air and dry soil heat up much more quickly than wet, because the specific heat capacity of water is so much higher than air or most soil.

Much of the radiation in a desert is being directly deflected back into space as a 30% efficient mirror. So again, the fact that most deserts are very hot is actually a bit counter intuitive.


How is what I said incorrect? Objects with a higher albedo reflect more energy than objects that don't. Reflected energy gets absorbed by the ambient environment, which in this case includes the atmosphere. Dry air or not, the atmosphere absorbs energy from the sun depending on composition. Without any sort of thermal heat sink capable of absorbing and releasing thermal energy at a more gradual rate (including clouds or water vapor), then a high albedo surface will cool quite rapidly once the sun goes down, as well as warm the surrounding air when the sun comes up.

I never said anything about heating by conduction, which provides little in the way of atmospheric heating anyway. I was talking about heating by re-radiation.

You said I was wrong, and then go on to explain exactly what I said. I'm confused.



While grass, forests, and crops have much lower albedos, which you would expect, this isn't caused by thermal properties, since they absorb radiant energy and convert it to chemical energy through chloroplasts and photosynthesis, storing this energy ultimately as oxygen and carbohydrates.




Photosynthesis is a very inefficient process (12% or so), and does not use the IR end of the spectrum. Plants and such either reflect most of the incident radiation or act as temporary heat sinks.


On the other hand, black surfaces, and certain other man made surfaces are hot because they have a reflectivity of near zero. They do not reflect anything, and therefore convert almost all of the photons directly into thermal energy and infrared radiation.

If you don't believe this, I don't know what to tell you.


A material only absorbs radiation at wavelengths it responds to. Everything else is reflected or ignored. Absorbed photons don't necessarily get turned into heat either. It depends on the material composition.

If a material is black, all it means is that it is absorbing (or not interacting with) a significant portion of the visible spectrum. What it does with those incident photons after it has "absorbed" them is based on the properties of the material. It could re-emit them as IR radiation, or it could just knock electrons free. A black object could also be transparent in the IR spectrum, meaning that while it may absorb visible light, it could be as clear as glass in IR. A prominent example are the heat shield tiles on the space shuttle, which are black but are specifically designed to shed and reflect heat, not absorb it.

An object's color does not imply anything about the thermal properties of an object.

Asphalt heats up because of it's thermal properties and it absorbs IR radiation. This is easily demonstrable by taking some asphalt and using a low IR emitting high powered light source. If the visible light was being converted into heat, then the asphalt should heat up noticeably. However, you're going to heat up asphalt a lot more by using a 1000 watt hair drier than a 1000 watt flood light.


Why else do you think solar panels are black, and forced air solar heaters are black?


Two completely different mechanisms here. First, not all solar panels are black. Polycrystalline cells are purplish-bluish. Solar cells are "dark" in color because they react with a broad spectrum of visible light due to the photoelectric effect, i.e. photons knock electrons out of the semi-conducting material to create an electrical current. It just so happens that the materials in solar cells are also fair thermal absorbers as well, though it doesn't contribute to the electrical output of the cell.

Forced air or liquid based solar heaters use IR absorbing materials along with materials designed to absorb the visible spectrum to convert into heat.

Both photoelectric cells and photothermal cells operate on the principle of trying to absorb as much spectrum as possible and converting it, but for very different ends.


It's because the black literally absorbs a higher percentage of the radiation.


Again, this is not necessarily the case. A black object merely is not emitting or reflecting radiation in the visible spectrum.


The insulating effects are irrelevant. In fact, the reason they use a corrugated material is to increase the surface area touching the air inside the heater, so the heat can be carried away faster to where you want it. This works because the black surface absorbs so much more radiation and converts it to thermal energy, so that it's almost impossible to carry it away by conduction, even with a fan blowing over it.


I'm not sure what your point is here. Photothermal cells work by capturing as much of the spectrum as possible and using materials to convert that spectrum into heat. This includes IR and visible light. If it were ONLY dependent on color, then technically any form of black material would work equally as well in such a cell. However, that is not the case. While you can create a cell using plexiglass, soda cans, and black spray paint the efficiency pales in comparison to professional built cells using high end thermal materials.




If black surfaces converted the sun light to other forms of EM radiation, then vacuum insulation in solar power plants and water heaters wouldn't even work, because the radiation would just pass back through the glass the same way it came in.


Those plants work because of the thermal and EM properties of the materials used. It's more than just absorbing/converting the visible spectrum. If that weren't the case, then those solar plants would work just as well using black spray paint or black construction paper.

Solar plants are doing more than just using the visible spectrum. They are also using the IR spectrum. The total amount of solar energy reaching the surface of the Earth is about 1360 W/m^2, of which the visible spectrum is just one part.


This solar plant would do nothing if your theory were correct. He even explains that in "laymen's terms" at 1:30 or so.

and a home made demonstration:

Notice how both the insulated and non-insulated bottles greatly exceed ambient temeprature. Even the non-insulated bottle gets WATER to 106f, about 39f or so above the ambient air temperature. This would not happen if you were correct.


What on Earth are you talking about? I proposed no theory. I was pointing out how the thermal and reflective properties of a material influences its surrounding environment.

Water is well known for it's ability to absorb IR radiation, hence it being a key green house gas that helps prevent our planet from turning into a snowball. In fact, that demonstration in the video proves my earlier point about the material properties. Water is transparent in th visible spectrum, however in the IR spectrum it is more opaque. Shine all the visible wavelength lasers you want at water and it will have hardly any effect. However, shine an IR laser on water and you can watch it boil.




I edited this part, because in the video he said the ambient temp was actually 67f, as this wasn't filmed at the same time the other was. So a non-insulated bottle painted black increased the temperature of WATER by 39f above ambient, just by sitting in sunlight. the insulated bottle heated it by about 80f just by sitting in sunlight.




Yes, because that black paint had the right thermal properties and water is an absorber of thermal energy. If they had a bottle coated with the same black material used in shuttle tiles, the water would not heat up nearly as much.


The home-made vacuum insulated bottle gets WATER to over 140f, even without any mirror collection system.

This is just sitting outside in the sunlight.

A clear, non-insulated bottle of water, or an aquarium, doesn't warm appreciable even if you shine a Fresnel lens or parabolic mirror on it. You have to paint a surface black, or put something preferably black and metallic in the water before it's temperature will rise significantly.



Visible light isn't going to warm up water. Inside of a plastic bottle or aquarium, that's pretty much all that's reaching the water (both plastic and aquarium glass are opaque in IR). IR radiation WILL heat up regular free standing water.

In order for a fresnel lens or parabolic mirror to have any appreciable effect, you need to make sure that:

1. You you are actually concentrating a larger amount of light than it just siting there in the sun. Obvious.

2. The container the water is in is transparent to IR. This may be harder to find, as most materials normal containers are opaque in IR.

3. That you have the bottle at the focal point of the IR light. This is NOT the same as the focal point of visible light. This will depend on the lens material and the wavelengths of light you are trying to focus.

4. That the lens is capable of focusing IR light (transmissive) or the mirror is reflective in the IR spectrum. Regular glass mirrors and lenses aren't going to cut it here.

5. That the IR band you are attempting to use matches the absorption spectrum of water. Any broad IR lens or mirror should work in this case.

All that's being done by painting the surface black with an appropriate paint is that you're using a material capable of absorbing thermal radiation and/or converting at least some of the visible spectrum into thermal energy, and then using water as the heat sink to store it. Water by itself is only capable of absorbing IR radiation, and ONLY when not put in a container that blocks IR radiation (which most do).
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Quoting washingtonian115:
If a storm is going to form in May I would say the end of May.Closer to the June time frame period to be safe.


I think thats a safe bet.

Looks like a nice warmup coming in FL the next week. In my area we could be talking near or at 80 by the end of the week. Also, interesting the amount of rain we've had so far.. my yard is as green as it would be in the middle of the summer. Don't see any rain in the forecast in the upcoming week though.
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Quoting CybrTeddy:


On average, La Nina years do produce more June storms.

This upcoming season though, I think theres a fairly decent chance for a pre-season May storm in a similar manner of Arthur.
If a storm is going to form in May I would say the end of May.Closer to the June time frame period to be safe.
Member Since: August 14, 2010 Posts: 10 Comments: 17654
Quoting washingtonian115:
All right call me crazy,but I'm going to make my assumptions early.I noticed that in the last 2 La nina years (99,07)a storm formed in June.So I'm gonna say that the first storm will form some time in June.Yeah I may get critizism from the nut cases on this post.But just remember I have edidence....


On average, La Nina years do produce more June storms.

This upcoming season though, I think theres a fairly decent chance for a pre-season May storm in a similar manner of Arthur.
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Quoting EYEStoSEA:


Hey W115, look at my new avatar...it's Igor and Julia...dont you just love it....I do !
Igor was a fame whore!! :p.Poor fiona looks like she's struggling(well she was all her life).Yep I like it.
Member Since: August 14, 2010 Posts: 10 Comments: 17654
Quoting washingtonian115:
All right call me crazy,but I'm going to make my assumptions early.I noticed that in the last 2 La nina years (99,07)a storm formed in June.So I'm gonna say that the first storm will form some time in June.Yeah I may get critizism from the nut cases on this post.But just remember I have edidence....


Hey W115, look at my new avatar...it's Igor and Julia...dont you just love it....I do !
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Quoting KoritheMan:

Good afternoon! I'm fine. You?
I'm doing great!.Gotta get ready for work tomarrow as well.
Member Since: August 14, 2010 Posts: 10 Comments: 17654
Quoting weatherboy1992:
No. I'm a 19 year old geek. With all the craziness here, that's the only personal information I will ever give.



heh, this 24yo "aspie" nerd has been a weather nut since I was a little kid.
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Quoting washingtonian115:
All right call me crazy,but I'm going to make my assumptions early.I noticed that in the last 2 La nina years (99,07)a storm formed in June.So I'm gonna say that the first storm will form some time in June.Yeah I may get critizism from the nut cases on this post.But just remember I have edidence....
It's not unreasonable to assume we'll see more early season activity this year because there will be no "lag time" like last year, where the atmosphere was still largely in El Nino territory during the early season.
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Well, lol, if we have to give our ages now as to qualifications....all I can say is ,I am over-qualified ! ;}
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All right call me crazy,but I'm going to make my assumptions early.I noticed that in the last 2 La nina years (99,07)a storm formed in June.So I'm gonna say that the first storm will form some time in June.Yeah I may get critizism from the nut cases on this post.But just remember I have edidence....
Member Since: August 14, 2010 Posts: 10 Comments: 17654
1251. bappit
Quoting BahaHurican:
Right.... out again for a while. Hope the blog stays sane while I'm gone.... have fun!

Sorry, not happening.
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Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.

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