Saturday, June 28, 2008

Anthropogenic methane bubble bursts again

As we saw previously the arbitrary assumptions of the IPCC "accountants" and their bottom up brick build of the ratio of natural/anthropogenic production of CH4 take a swan dive with Keppler et al and the Heavy Brigade from Max Planck,another conundrum arises.

Most methane in Earth’s atmosphere is made by primitive microbes called archaea that reside in anaerobic locations like rice paddies and the guts of ruminants like cows. However, methane is also produced non-biogenically, by reactions between water and hot, carbon-bearing rocks, or by the natural decay of coal and petroleum.

Methane, composed of one carbon and four hydrogen atoms, attracts a lot of attention from astrobiologists “because it is a key biomarker,” says Bebout. “But methane can be produced by non-biological means, so when you see it in the atmosphere of a planet, biology was not necessarily involved, and that’s why we want to know about isotopes.”

Isotopes are key to understanding the origin of methane because organisms tend to use more of the lighter isotopes. Biogenic methane usually – but not always – contains a higher percentage of the lighter carbon-12 than non-biogenic methane, which contains relatively more of the heavier carbon-13. The two types of carbon atoms both have the same number of protons, but carbon-13 has one more neutron than carbon-12

First the brickbuild is bad methodology and there are well defined reasons in mathmatical physics as Poincare portrayed.Poincare followed rather the ideas of Francis Bacon (who claimed that to start scientific investigations from general axioms and principles is a dangerous and damned method, leading to unavoidable mistakes), than the Cartesian theory (saying that the conformity to any reality is unrelated to the science, which is the art of the deductions of the corollaries of arbitrary axioms).

Secondly extrapolation of generalized axiomx(isotopic biogenuc modulation) across taxa is pseudoscience,There are no constants end of story.Even within taxa the modulation rate varies with both competition and geographic location.

Bottom line we do not know the partition ratio for natural/anthropogenic ch4 production.

Atmospheric prediction caught in quicksand.

Oh tell me, designer of desert,

Geometrician of quicksand,

Is that true that boundless lines

Are stronger than blowing wind?

0 . Mandelshtam, 1933

In forecasting,the comparison with reality can be made only at the moment when the prediction comes true. At the time of its formulation, it cannot be tested and, therefore, in its most general form, it has no scientific status.
Logical Analysis of the Problem of Forecasting


DRAFT March 29, 2006
Spotlight on Global Temperature
by James Hansen, Makiko Sato, Reto Ruedy, Ken Lo, David Lea and Martin Medina-Elizalde

Early model predictions of global warming proved accurate,the Pacific Ocean seems charged for a potential super-El Nino, and global temperature is poised to reach record, perhaps dangerous, levels.

SUPER EL NINO IN 2006-2007? We suggest that an El Nino is likely to originate in 2006 and that there is a good chance it will be a "super El Nino", rivaling the 1983 and 1997-1998 El Ninos, which were successively labeled the "El Nino of the century" as they were of unprecedented strength in the previous 100 years (Fig. 1 of Fedorov and Philander 2000). Further, we argue that global warming causes an increase of such "super El Ninos". Our rationale is based on interpretation of dominant mechanisms in the ENSO (El Nino Southern Oscillation) phenomenon, examination of historical SST data, and observed Pacific Ocean SST anomalies in February 2006.

As we see the prediction was inverted by a La Nina or out in its trajectory by 180 degrees.Why?Model error.

One of the more interesting attributes of the weather atmospheric forecasting community is its evolutionary skill. As we have previously seen the “idea”of increased computer power and model integration is seen as the solution of the open problem of forecast, or predictive capabilities.

At first glance this would be seen as logically correct, however the atmosphere (weather –climate system) is a complex system not in thermodynamic equilibrium(often far from TDE) and in a perpetual state of reorganization .Here the rules of the game, where idealistic assumptions for the instantaneous state of the atmosphere are not valid when the equations of motion(transformation) to a future state are presently applied.

This is evident when seen in the evolution of the weather forecast model ability of the ECMWF.A widely used model producing forecasts in the range for a few days to a number of weeks. The preparation base is a n-day forecast with n= 10 days of the global atmospheric state.

In any forecast there is an error dependent on initial conditions (due to arbitrary assumptions/estimates of unknown qualities) with the ECMWF model over the last 20 or so years in a paradox the model error has increased.

In 1982 in a seminal paper in which ECMWF data was first used ,to measure predictive ability. Edward Lorenz found the mean error evolution (doubling time of initial error) was two days, presently has dropped to 1.2 days.

This suggest that there is a limiting of predictive capabilities for long range weather forecasting with models of increasing sophistication ,owing to interconnected complexity in the atmospheric dynamics.

Sensitivity to the initial conditions-the principle signature of deterministic chaos-is thus not an artifact arising from when lower order models are used but is, rather, deeply rooted in the physics of the atmosphere.

Nicolis and Nicolis Foundations of complex systems page 223.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Life and Chirality an asymmetric universe.

As we previously posted on panspermia.

Panspermia did life come from outer space?

A vocal minority of biological investigators, including Nobel winner Francis Crick have put forward views stating that life as we know it ,did not commence here on Earth at all, but was imported from outerspace. Specifically that the ingredients and precursors such as spores or microorganisms from life bearing planets are transported across the Galaxy.

The first proponent of the Panspermia theory was chemist Svente Arrhinius .His view was the life bearing spores floated across space propelled by solar radiation .Francis Crick suggested it was transported on meteorites ,Fred Hoyle and Chandra Wickramasinghe suggested it was in the interstellar clouds that earth encounters on the grand precession that earth takes around the outer spiral of the Galaxy lasting some 150 million years.

The latter has some substance as the paleo records show “feast and famine’ in biodiversity and severe climatic oscillations ,due to changes in density in the interstellar medium.

We see some more interesting news.

Scientists have confirmed for the first time that an important component of early genetic material which has been found in meteorite fragments is extraterrestrial in origin, in a paper published on 15 June 2008.

The finding suggests that parts of the raw materials to make the first molecules of DNA and RNA may have come from the stars.

The scientists, from Europe and the USA, say that their research, published in the journal Earth and Planetary Science Letters, provides evidence that life’s raw materials came from sources beyond the Earth.

Because meteorites represent left over materials from the formation of the solar system, the key components for life -- including nucleobases -- could be widespread in the cosmos. As more and more of life’s raw materials are discovered in objects from space, the possibility of life springing forth wherever the right chemistry is present becomes more likely.”

Necessity and chance suggest the left chemistry is more likely in a left dominated universe where asymmetry(chirality) is more dominant(Galctic spirals,dna.etc).

“These meteorites were bringing in what I call the ‘seeds of chirality,’” stated Breslow. “If you have a universe that was just the mirror image of the one we know about, then in fact, presumably it would have right-handed amino acids. That’s why I’m only half kidding when I say there is a guy on the other side of the universe with his heart on the right hand side.”

These amino acids “seeds” formed in interstellar space, possibly on asteroids as they careened through space. At the outset, they have equal amounts of left and right-handed amino acids. But as these rocks soar past neutron stars, their light rays trigger the selective destruction of one form of amino acid. The stars emit circularly polarized light—in one direction, its rays are polarized to the right. 180 degrees in the other direction, the star emits left-polarized light.

The term Chiral is derived from the Greek name kheir meaning "hand" and apparently was coined by Lord Kelvin in his Baltimore Lectures on Molecular Dynamics and the Wave Theory of Light in which he stated ..."I call any geometrical figure, or group of points, chiral, and say it has chirality, if its image in a plane mirror, ideally realized, cannot be brought to coincide with itself."
While the concepts of "asymmetry" were developed by J.H. van’t Hoff and J.A. Le Bel in 1874 following the resolution by Louis Pastuer of a mixture of tartaric acid salt isomers during the period 1848-1853, in which he picked out the differing crystal types by hand - doing so on the basis of the differing physical appearance of the salt crystals . Pastuer recognized that two of the isomers polarized light differently (one to the left and the other to the right) and that this must be due to an asymmetric grouping of atoms in the optically active molecules.

And here we see the fundamental reality of nature,the absence of linearity,that growth and form is heliophysical (chiral=helix)
always and everwhere.

Image above http://www.scholarpedia.org/article/Belousov-Zhabotinsky_reaction

Sunday, June 08, 2008

Antarctic Icemass increase is...Massive

The Antarctic icemass has set a new record for the period of observations.

May he, whom Nature's laws obey,

Who lifts the poor, and sinks the proud,

"Quiet the raging of the sea,

And still the madness of the crowd!"

While some build castles in the air,

Others build them in the seas;

Subscribers plainly see them there,

For fools will see as wise men please

"Now buried in the depth below,

Now mounted up to Heaven again,

They reel and stagger to and fro,

At their wits' end, like drunken men

Ye wise philosophers, explain

What magic makes snow and ice arise,

When dropt into the Southern main;

Or do these jugglers cheat our eyes?

(With apologies to Jonathon Swift)

An interesting perspective is as we see with a prolonged solar minimum,negative (inverse) climatic states such as the IPO and PDO and the ability of the Antarctic to act as a "heat sink" in the reversible carnot cycle ie in refrigerator mode.

Abstract.We discuss the heat balance of Antarctica using observations from satellites and automatic weather stations and modelling results. Qualitatively, the surface radiation budgets of Antarctica and Greenland resemble those of large deserts, with a small net surface radiation compared to the zonal mean. As a result, atmospheric radiative cooling over the large ice sheets is significantly smaller than, for instance, over the

Arctic basin. A unique feature of the large ice sheets is that the annual mean net radiation at their surface is negative. This is compensated by a flux of sensible heat from the atmosphere. This introduces additional cooling in the lower atmosphere, especially in the katabatic wind zone, where a positive feedback exists between surface cooling and downward sensible heat transport. This close interaction between the radiation

climate and boundary layer dynamics makes the large ice sheets extraordinary components of the global climate system.

Monday, June 02, 2008

The Interdecadal Pacific Oscillation a Binary climate phenomena.

As we have seen in the previous post, we can divide the climate and its related interpretations into two components.

A) The fluctuations within a persistent regime or state, and

B) The supercritical or inverse oscillations of persistent states that are described as positive or negative (hotter or cooler)

Here A is a subset of B, and we can find a trend within the state being positive or negative, but we cannot use a trendline between states as this has different stochastic attributes. This is a fundamental flaw with using moving mean anomalies with data between two states with inverse symmetry.ie it tends to amplify a trend.

We see this illustrated with the PDO and IPD where both phenomena changed phase near the time of the Pacific “climatic shift” around 1976 and which apparently influenced global temperatures.

The Interdecadal Pacific Oscillation (IPO) is (almost) the Pacific-wide manifestation of the Pacific Decadal Oscillation of Mantua et al (1997), with as much variance in the Southern Hemisphere Pacific down to at least 55oS as in the Northern Hemisphere. The IPO is a multidecadal sea surface temperature (SST) pattern quite like that of ENSO, but differing in several ways. It shows a marked amount of symmetry about the equator. It was introduced by Power et al (1999) based on work by Folland et al (1999). Power et al showed that the IPO modulated ENSO climate teleconnections to Australia. The near equivalence of the PDO and IPO and some likely independent effects of the IPO relative to ENSO on the South Pacific Convergence Zone were shown by Folland et al (2002). The concept of the IPO has recently been used in South Pacific paleoclimatic studies by Linsley et al (2004) and has been related to tropical rainfall patterns by Meinke et al (in press). The latter also compared IPO influences to those of SST on purely decadal time scales. The physical nature of the IPO is under investigation; it is still not clear, despite the above studies, to what extent the IPO is really independent of ENSO red noise and especially of SST variations near a decadal time scale.

These global bifurcations are called ‘‘Shilnikov phenomenon” and are well described in mathematical literature.

In the presence of inversion symmetry, we note that a periodic orbit can always be classified as either asymmetric or symmetric, with asymmetric orbits always

occurring in pairs in which each member transforms into the other under the inversion operation, while symmetric orbits are unique.

In a (supercritical) Hopf bifurcation, the real parts of the eigenvalues of a fixed point increase through zero from negative to positive, causing the stationary point to lose stability and a stable periodic orbit to be created.(see previous post Andronov)

So as we see the return to a period of cooler climatic persistence will falsify a substantive number of predictions , and is why we can predict an increasing amount of negative “forecasts” by researchers to ‘hedge their positions”so to speak.

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