Brrrr! -135.8°F Measured at Earth's New Coldest Spot

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 4:23 PM GMT on December 10, 2013

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I’m in San Francisco this week for the annual meeting of the American Geophysical Union (AGU), the world’s largest climate science conference. Over five thousand of the world’s top climate scientists are here, giving a staggering 10,000 talks and poster presentations. It’s total information overload, and I will only be able to offer this week but a small sampling of the incredible amount of science being presented here.

What is the coldest place in the world? It is a high ridge above 13,000 feet in Antarctica on the East Antarctic Plateau where temperatures in several hollows can dip below minus 135.8 degrees Fahrenheit (minus 92.2 degrees Celsius) on a clear winter night, announced polar scientist Ted Scambos of the National Snow and Ice Data Center, at a Monday press conference at the AGU conference. The official world cold record of minus 128.6 F (minus 89.2 C), set in 1983 at the Russian Vostok Research Station in East Antarctica will remain intact, though, since official records have to be measured by ground-based instruments. How cold is -135.8°F? That’s so cold that it would hurt to breathe, said Dr. Scambos in an AP interview. That’s also well below the -109°F temperature that dry ice (frozen carbon dioxide) begins to sublimate into gaseous carbon dioxide. But don’t get your hopes up that we can use the newly-found record cold spot to take CO2 out of the air and solve global warming—you need a temperature of -220°F (-140°C) to freeze CO2 out the air into dry ice “snow” at the concentrations that CO2 exists at in our atmosphere (about 398 ppm.) Still, it is an intriguing concept to build giant refrigerators in Antarctica to do just that—something that has been proposed by Purdue climate scientist Ernest Agee, in a research paper titled, CO2 Snow Deposition in Antarctica to Curtail Anthropogenic Global Warming, published earlier this year in the Journal of Applied Meteorology and Climatology .


Figure 1. With remote-sensing satellites, scientists have found the coldest places on Earth, just off a ridge in the East Antarctic Plateau. The coldest of the cold temperatures dropped to minus 135.8 F (minus 93.2 C)--several degrees colder than the previous record. Image Credit: Ted Scambos, National Snow and Ice Data Center.


Video 1. The coldest place on earth. Data from NASA-USGS Landsat 8 satellite, and NASA's MODIS sensor on the Aqua satellite. Image Credit:  NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center


Figure 2. In this spectacular photo from Antarctica taken by a NASA scientist on November 24, 2013, we see a lenticular cloud over a pressure ridge in the Antarctic sea ice. Lenticular clouds are a type of wave cloud. They usually form when a layer of air near the surface encounters a topographic barrier, gets pushed upward, and flows over it as a series of atmospheric gravity waves. Lenticular clouds form at the crest of the waves, where the air is coolest and water vapor is most likely to condense into cloud droplets. The bulging sea ice in the foreground is a pressure ridge, which formed when separate ice floes collided and piled up on each other. Image credit: NASA Earth Observatory.

Follow this week’s talks at AGU via the Internet
You can watch live streaming and recorded talks at this week’s AGU meeting—nearly 100 sessions (almost 600 presentations in total)--will be available live and on demand. Register here, and be sure to use code AGU13 for free access. You can also browse thousands of poster presentations at the poster site.
 
Amusing story: Metallica Has Officially Rocked on Every Continent Following Antarctica Gig on Sunday

Jeff Masters

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283. ncstorm
2:12 AM GMT on December 11, 2013
Quoting 277. Bluestorm5:
For now and on, I'm adding notes. I only post anything past 120 HR for fun because it's interesting to see what it's thinking :) Beside, some of the snow in DC wasn't really in the models until about 48-60 hours ago.


exactly..our little record of early snow in November wasn't on the models till 48 hours out..it was originally shown in the 300 hour and the models dropped it and picked it back up in short range..

I love posting long range..
Member Since: August 19, 2006 Posts: 13 Comments: 16215
282. BaltimoreBrian
2:12 AM GMT on December 11, 2013
Hey Cody check these out

Part 1

Part 2

Queen Elizabeth's most famous speech to the fleet at Tilbury (August 18, 1588, New Style)

"My loving people, we have been persuaded by some that are careful of our safety, to take heed how we commit ourselves to armed multitudes for fear of treachery; but, I do assure you, I do not desire to live to distrust my faithful and loving people. Let tyrants fear, I have always so behaved myself, that under God I have placed my chiefest strength and safeguard in the loyal hearts and goodwill of my subjects; and, therefore, I am come amongst you as you see at this time, not for my recreation and disport, but being resolved, in the midst and heat of battle, to live or die amongst you all – to lay down for my God, and for my kingdoms, and for my people, my honour and my blood even in the dust. I know I have the body of a weak and feeble woman; but I have the heart and stomach of a king – and of a King of England too, and think foul scorn that Parma or Spain, or any prince of Europe, should dare to invade the borders of my realm; to which, rather than any dishonour should grow by me, I myself will take up arms – I myself will be your general, judge, and rewarder of every one of your virtues in the field. I know already, for your forwardness, you have deserved rewards and crowns, and, we do assure you, on the word of a prince, they shall be duly paid you."
Member Since: August 9, 2011 Posts: 26 Comments: 8809
281. ncstorm
2:07 AM GMT on December 11, 2013
Quoting 203. ScottLincoln:

...which is a very interesting response to someone who did do research on something when all you provided was a misleading anecdote.


Scott..the only thing misleading is Nea stating that the CPC did well in skill accuracy..also claiming that New Bern broke a high temp record for the month of December and lastly you claiming I provided a misleading Anecdote..

but I guess me not taking that climate change course proves I can't provide facts or research but those who get all those plusses can state anything without being called on it..

the temp has dropped here..it was 72 degrees here earlier today and now its 47 degrees..brrrrr as Dr. Masters said..









Member Since: August 19, 2006 Posts: 13 Comments: 16215
280. Jedkins01
2:05 AM GMT on December 11, 2013
Quoting 277. Bluestorm5:
For now and on, I'm adding notes. I only post anything past 120 HR for fun because it's interesting to see what it's thinking :) Beside, some of the snow in DC wasn't really in the models until about 48-60 hours ago.



Oh yes for fun is a different story, I just meant I don't give remotely any credibility to accuracy for solutions that far out.

They are indeed fun to look at anyway though, lol.
Member Since: August 21, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 7992
279. BaltimoreBrian
2:04 AM GMT on December 11, 2013
Quoting 278. TropicalAnalystwx13:

Busy!

Trying to finish my 10 page paper for English before I start on my 8 page paper concerning the rule of Queen Elizabeth of England for Western Civ before I start my 3 page literary analysis on the social issues presented in The Great Gatsby for English while trying to complete 2 tests for my online Political Science class, study for my final test in Art Appreciation, and master logarithms for pre-calc.

Nothing out of the ordinary.


What did the mathematician do when he was stranded on a deserted island?
Member Since: August 9, 2011 Posts: 26 Comments: 8809
278. TropicalAnalystwx13
2:02 AM GMT on December 11, 2013
Quoting 268. Thrawst:
So, hows everybody tonight.

Busy!

Trying to finish my 10 page paper for English before I start on my 8 page paper concerning the rule of Queen Elizabeth of England for Western Civ before I start my 3 page literary analysis on the social issues presented in The Great Gatsby for English while trying to complete 2 tests for my online Political Science class, study for my final test in Art Appreciation, and master logarithms for pre-calc.

Nothing out of the ordinary.
Member Since: July 6, 2010 Posts: 113 Comments: 32717
277. Bluestorm5
2:02 AM GMT on December 11, 2013
Quoting 273. Jedkins01:


Plain and simple, don't even bother at 360 hours, I don't even pay attention to solutions that far out lol.
For now and on, I'm adding notes. I only post anything past 120 HR for fun because it's interesting to see what it's thinking :) Beside, some of the snow in DC wasn't really in the models until about 48-60 hours ago.
Member Since: August 1, 2011 Posts: 28 Comments: 8046
276. Patrap
2:02 AM GMT on December 11, 2013
5F and Sneaux at Yellowstone National Park,Wyoming

Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 427 Comments: 129444
275. BaltimoreBrian
1:56 AM GMT on December 11, 2013
Ah, you got to believe in Christmas miracles Jedkins01 :)
Member Since: August 9, 2011 Posts: 26 Comments: 8809
274. washingtonian115
1:55 AM GMT on December 11, 2013
Quoting 272. Doppler22:

You see the video I mentioned about you during the snow today??
Yes I did!,and lets just say the advil will be on speed dial.
Member Since: August 14, 2010 Posts: 10 Comments: 17658
273. Jedkins01
1:54 AM GMT on December 11, 2013
Quoting 264. Bluestorm5:
Honestly, I thought CPC was pretty slow to respond to December's cold snap. I also agree it's unwise to follow what's the models are thinking 360 hours from now.


Plain and simple, don't even bother at 360 hours, I don't even pay attention to solutions that far out lol.
Member Since: August 21, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 7992
272. Doppler22
1:53 AM GMT on December 11, 2013
Quoting 258. washingtonian115:
It's 300 hours out.But it wuold be nice to have a white christmas

You see the video I mentioned about you during the snow today??
Member Since: February 13, 2012 Posts: 11 Comments: 3850
271. luvtogolf
1:52 AM GMT on December 11, 2013
Quoting 254. Neapolitan:
Oh, don't be silly. So long as he doesn't try to make the ignorant claim that wintry weather in winter disproves a solid, proven theory, no one will say a word...


Yea right:)
Member Since: June 12, 2011 Posts: 0 Comments: 1288
270. Patrap
1:50 AM GMT on December 11, 2013
Published on Dec 10, 2013
When NASA's Juno spacecraft flew past Earth on Oct. 9, 2013, it received a boost in speed of more than 8,800 mph (about 7.3 kilometer per second), which set it on course for a July 4, 2016, rendezvous with Jupiter.

One of Juno's sensors, a special kind of camera optimized to track faint stars, also had a unique view of the Earth-moon system. The result was an intriguing, low-resolution glimpse of what our world would look like to a visitor from afar.

The cameras that took the images for the movie are located near the pointed tip of one of the spacecraft's three solar-array arms. They are part of Juno's Magnetic Field Investigation (MAG) and are normally used to determine the orientation of the magnetic sensors. These cameras look away from the sunlit side of the solar array, so as the spacecraft approached, the system's four cameras pointed toward Earth. Earth and the moon came into view when Juno was about 600,000 miles (966,000 kilometers) away -- about three times the Earth-moon separation.

During the flyby, timing was everything. Juno was traveling about twice as fast as a typical satellite, and the spacecraft itself was spinning at 2 rpm. To assemble a movie that wouldn't make viewers dizzy, the star tracker had to capture a frame each time the camera was facing Earth at exactly the right instant. The frames were sent to Earth, where they were processed into video format.

The music accompaniment is an original score by Vangelis.

Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 427 Comments: 129444
269. oldnewmex
1:49 AM GMT on December 11, 2013
Post 252. Neap
They just keep coming, and coming. It staggers the imagination.

I think "lack of situational awareness" is a little too generous in describing some of those drivers. I see similar situations near my home every winter, though not on such a grand scale.
Member Since: January 28, 2011 Posts: 0 Comments: 188
268. Thrawst
1:49 AM GMT on December 11, 2013
So, hows everybody tonight.
Member Since: July 18, 2010 Posts: 50 Comments: 1909
267. Patrap
1:49 AM GMT on December 11, 2013
Published on Oct 12, 2013

Jupiter-bound Juno spacecraft beams back its first image of Earth Juno probe beams back its first image of Earth as it uses the planet's gravity to slingshot its way to Jupiter.

Member Since: July 3, 2005 Posts: 427 Comments: 129444
266. Jedkins01
1:46 AM GMT on December 11, 2013
Quoting 251. BaltimoreBrian:
The snow was disappointing. It was above freezing the whole time. About as much snow fell as on Sunday but mostly melted. Never got more than an inch deep.



Sounds like the once-every-20-years Florida snow events, lol.
Member Since: August 21, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 7992
265. Climate175
1:46 AM GMT on December 11, 2013
Some type of Christmas Coastal storm. (Long Range though)
Member Since: September 24, 2013 Posts: 7 Comments: 4669
264. Bluestorm5
1:45 AM GMT on December 11, 2013
Honestly, I thought CPC was pretty slow to respond to December's cold snap. I also agree it's unwise to follow what's the models are thinking 360 hours from now.
Member Since: August 1, 2011 Posts: 28 Comments: 8046
263. barbamz
1:46 AM GMT on December 11, 2013
Late and short hello with some victims of our European storm Xaver, some of which survived and some unfortunately not. Stay well everyone!



U.K. Rescue Center Overrun With Orphaned (And Adorable) Seal Pups
by Eyder Peralta, December 10, 201311:24 AM

Dozens of seal pups missing after hurricane
Published: 10 Dec 2013 16:11 GMT 01:00
(Okay, take the "hurricane" with humor, it's the translation of German "Orkan" with the same roots in language as "hurricane".)


Lost beaches and coast line in the german island of Sylt (missing seal pubs are from another island, Helgoland, though). More.
Member Since: October 25, 2008 Posts: 62 Comments: 6530
262. Jedkins01
1:45 AM GMT on December 11, 2013
Quoting 206. Patrap:


Unfortunately this is often true, just look at the level of thinking of those who gossip and enjoy gossip...
Member Since: August 21, 2008 Posts: 0 Comments: 7992
261. Climate175
1:45 AM GMT on December 11, 2013
Quoting 258. washingtonian115:
It's 300 hours out.But it wuold be nice to have a white christmas
Yes but i think we might have a white christmas personally.. The CFS models shows precip on Dec 25th.
Member Since: September 24, 2013 Posts: 7 Comments: 4669
260. BaltimoreBrian
1:44 AM GMT on December 11, 2013
Quoting 258. washingtonian115:
It's 300 hours out.But it wuold be nice to have a white christmas


360 hours actually but what's a few hours between wishcasting snow fiends :)
Member Since: August 9, 2011 Posts: 26 Comments: 8809
259. BaltimoreBrian
1:43 AM GMT on December 11, 2013
Quoting 201. PalmBeachWeather:
Never did like Michael Bolton in the 80's, Now I have to endure his Honda commercials...Makes me want to hurl.


I prefer Dave Brubeck

Member Since: August 9, 2011 Posts: 26 Comments: 8809
258. washingtonian115
1:43 AM GMT on December 11, 2013
Quoting 255. BaltimoreBrian:
It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas

It's 300 hours out.But it wuold be nice to have a white christmas
Member Since: August 14, 2010 Posts: 10 Comments: 17658
257. Climate175
1:40 AM GMT on December 11, 2013
Quoting 255. BaltimoreBrian:
It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas

It certainly is...!
Member Since: September 24, 2013 Posts: 7 Comments: 4669
256. Doppler22
1:31 AM GMT on December 11, 2013
Quoting 253. Climate175:
Same.

Sorry :/ I got 5" today and 6" sunday but I think I only have 6" on the ground now due to melting and compacting
Member Since: February 13, 2012 Posts: 11 Comments: 3850
255. BaltimoreBrian
1:29 AM GMT on December 11, 2013
It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas

Member Since: August 9, 2011 Posts: 26 Comments: 8809
254. Neapolitan
1:22 AM GMT on December 11, 2013
Quoting 249. luvtogolf:


Get ready to get slapped for posting that chart and making that statement.
Oh, don't be silly. So long as he doesn't try to make the ignorant claim that wintry weather in winter disproves a solid, proven theory, no one will say a word...
Member Since: November 8, 2009 Posts: 4 Comments: 13743
253. Climate175
1:22 AM GMT on December 11, 2013
Quoting 251. BaltimoreBrian:
The snow was disappointing. It was above freezing the whole time. About as much snow fell as on Sunday but mostly melted. Never got more than an inch deep.
Same.
Member Since: September 24, 2013 Posts: 7 Comments: 4669
252. Neapolitan
1:20 AM GMT on December 11, 2013
Quoting 198. Sfloridacat5:
I'm not sure if this has been posted yet. It's a multi vehicle pile-up near Milwaukee, Wisconsin that happend yesterday. 1 person was killed in this accident. Not a very good picture because its a road cam.
FWIW, here's a long video showing the entire mess. As almost always, folks driving too fast for conditions coupled with lack of situational awareness leads to a big mess...

http://www.liveleak.com/view?i=5b4_1386649076
Member Since: November 8, 2009 Posts: 4 Comments: 13743
251. BaltimoreBrian
1:18 AM GMT on December 11, 2013
The snow was disappointing. It was above freezing the whole time. About as much snow fell as on Sunday but mostly melted. Never got more than an inch deep.
Member Since: August 9, 2011 Posts: 26 Comments: 8809
wow!!! watch out if you live in the northeast!!!
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting 227. hurricanes2018:
very cold weather!!


Get ready to get slapped for posting that chart and making that statement.
Member Since: June 12, 2011 Posts: 0 Comments: 1288
Quoting 238. Climate175:
The CFS and GFS show an interesting storm for Christmas , it is a little long range though.
Speaking that Christmas is two weeks out, it's very long range and subject to drastic changes.
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watch out for a big snow storm for this weekend for the northeast
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I'm back from WU jail.
Where's my Gulf Coast snow storm?
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244. beell
Quoting 241. ScottLincoln:

What we need is a comparison to different models and to climatology. If they beat those over the long term, even by only a little bit, it suggests that human forecasters have added value to the forecasts.


And that may be an issue as models have changed over the span of climate normals.
Member Since: September 11, 2007 Posts: 145 Comments: 16919
Wash during the snow today XD :)

(me too)

Member Since: February 13, 2012 Posts: 11 Comments: 3850
500 mb vort

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Quoting 237. beell:



6-10 Day Heidke Skill Score/6-10 Day Temperature Oulook
11/06 - 12/05 2013



6-10 Day Ranked Probability Skill Score/6-10 Day Temperature Oulook
11/06 - 12/05 2013


Not a particularly awesome month for skill.


What we need is a comparison to different models and to climatology. If they beat those over the long term, even by only a little bit, it suggests that human forecasters have added value to the forecasts.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
From the Miami NWS Disco...

BEHIND THE EXITING HIGH, A MODELS ARE SHOWING A STRONGER LOW AND
COLD FRONT DEVELOPING OVER THE TEXAS PANHANDLE AND MOVING EAST
NORTHEAST OVER THE WEEKEND. BY SUNDAY MORNING, MODELS ARE IN GOOD
AGREEMENT WITH THIS LOW MOVING OFF THE MID ATLANTIC COAST AND A
COLD FRONT MOVING INTO CENTRAL FLORIDA. THE FRONT BEGINS TO WEAKEN
OVER THE FLORIDA PENINSULA, BUT SHOULD STILL BE STRONG ENOUGH TO
COOL TEMPS BY A FEW DEGREES.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
The CFS and GFS show an interesting storm for Christmas , it is a little long range though.
Member Since: September 24, 2013 Posts: 7 Comments: 4669
237. beell

30 Day Heidke Skill Score/6-10 Day Temperature Oulook
11/06 - 12/05 2013



30 Day Ranked Probability Skill Score/6-10 Day Temperature Oulook
11/06 - 12/05 2013


Not a particularly awesome month for skill.

Member Since: September 11, 2007 Posts: 145 Comments: 16919
Is the CFS good at predicting a event or what type of model is it ?
Member Since: September 24, 2013 Posts: 7 Comments: 4669
sfc temps weekend system

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system for the ne showing this weekend sat/sun as per gfs


test image

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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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