Estimates of the Generation of Available Potential Energy by Infrared Radiation

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  • 1 Department of Geology and Geophysics, Yale University, New Haven, CT 06511
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Abstract

Data from the National Meteorological Center and net outgoing infrared radiation (IR) data measured by NOAA satellites for January 1977 are used to compute estimates of the spectral and spatial contributions to the net generation of available potential energy in the Northern Hemisphere due to infrared radiation. Although these estimates are necessarily crude, the results obtained indicate that IR causes destruction of both zonal and eddy available potential energy. The contributions from midlatitudes to the zonal and eddy generation are Gz≈−5.0 W m−2 and GE≈−0.6 W m−2, respectively. The eddy generation is due almost entirely to stationary wavenumbers 1 and 2. Comparison with earlier studies and computation of Newtonian cooling coefficients are discussed.

Abstract

Data from the National Meteorological Center and net outgoing infrared radiation (IR) data measured by NOAA satellites for January 1977 are used to compute estimates of the spectral and spatial contributions to the net generation of available potential energy in the Northern Hemisphere due to infrared radiation. Although these estimates are necessarily crude, the results obtained indicate that IR causes destruction of both zonal and eddy available potential energy. The contributions from midlatitudes to the zonal and eddy generation are Gz≈−5.0 W m−2 and GE≈−0.6 W m−2, respectively. The eddy generation is due almost entirely to stationary wavenumbers 1 and 2. Comparison with earlier studies and computation of Newtonian cooling coefficients are discussed.

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