# (So/4) W m -2 is the average incoming solar radiative energy per unit area for planet Earth. (So W m -2 is the Solar constant)

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1 Atmospheric "greenhouse effect" - How the presence of an atmosphere makes Earth's surface warmer Some relevant parameters and facts (see previous slide sets) (So/) W m -2 is the average incoming solar radiative energy per unit area for planet Earth. (So W m -2 is the Solar constant) p is planetary albedo. In the absence of an atmosphere, it would be the surface albedo. Stefan-Boltzmann law: A body with temperature T emits radiation with the energy per unit area = T - W m -2 K - is Stefan-Boltzmann constant; T in degk Earth's atmosphere is nearly transparent to solar (shortwave) radiation The "greenhouse gases" in the atmosphere do absorb terrestrial (longwave) radiation

2 Important greenhouse gases: H2O, CO2, CH, etc. Fig. 2.6 in M&P (yet again)

3 Case 1. Earth in radiative equilibrium without an atmosphere The incoming solar energy per unit area is (So/) (1 - p) At temperature T E, the energy per unit area radiated by the Earth is (by Stefan-Boltzmann law) T E Let "in = out", T E = (So/) (1 - p), we have TE = [(1/ )(So/)(1 - p)] 1/ For example, if p = 0.1, we have T E 271. K

4 Notations (for convenience of discussion): SW : "shortwave radiation" : the radiation directly emitted by the Sun, or the sunlight reflected by the Earth system), ~ visible band LW: "longwave radiation" : the radiation emitted by the Earth and/or its atmosphere, ~ infrared band SW : Upward shortwave radiation LW : Downward longwave radiation, etc.

5 In previous example (Earth with no atmosphere): p (S o /) S o / T E At the surface, SW p) (So/), LW Radiative surface: SW LW T E = [(1/ )(S o /)(1 - p )] 1/

6 Case 2. One-layer atmosphere that is transparent to SW but completely absorbing of LW radiation p (S o /) S o / T A T surface: SW p) (So/), LW LW S Radiative equilibrium for Earth surface: SW LW LW S = (S o /)(1 - p ) + Eq. top of atmosphere: SW p) (So/), LW Radiative equilibrium for the earth system: SW LW = (S o /)(1 - p ) Eq. (2)

7 p (S o /) S o / T A T S S = (S o /)(1 - p ) + Eq. (1) = (S o /)(1 - p ) Eq. (2) = [(1/ )(S o /)(1 - p )] 1/ and 2 = S S = 2 1/ For example, if p = 0.1, we have TA 271. K and TS K (surface is warmer)

8 Note : (1) The TA is now the effective temperature, TE, for the Earth system (concerning its emission of radiation back to space). But note that it remains the same as the TE in the absence of an atmosphere The presence of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere makes the surface of the Earth warmer, but it does not modify the total (Earth surface + atmosphere) longwave radiation that the Earth emit back to space, i.e. LW at the top of the atmosphere. In radiative equilibrium, this quantity depends only on the Solar constant and planetary albedo. (2) S > is always true, regardless of the detail of the greenhouse-gas absorptivity, etc.

9 Case 3. One-layer atmosphere that is transparent to SW and partially absorbing of LW radiation, with being the fraction of IR absorption by the atmosphere p (S o /) S o / T S T A T surface: SW p) (So/), LW LW S S = (So/)(1 - p) + Eq. top of atmosphere: SW p) (So/), LW S S = (So/)(1 - p) Eq. (2) S = (2/ ) 1/ > (Note that 0 1)

10 Interpreting S = (2/ ) 1/ or A = ( /2) 1/ S : Recall that is the infrared absorptivity of the atmosphere, 0 1 For example, if = 0.8, 80% of the infrared radiation emitted by Earth's surface is absorbed by the atmosphere, while 20% of it passes through the atmosphere to escape to space = 0.8 A = ( /2) 1/ S = S = 0.2 A = ( /2) 1/ S = S Smaller Colder atmosphere This is solely expected, since the atmosphere needs to have an intake of energy (by absorbing LW radiation) to keep itself warm. (We have already assumed that the atmosphere is transparent to SW radiation, therefore LW radiation is the only energy source for the atmosphere)

11 As 0, A 0 When the atmosphere is transparent to both SW and LW radiation, it has zero gain of radiative energy. Yet, recall that any object that has a non-zero temperature would emit radiation by Stefan-Boltzmann law. Therefore, the atmosphere will keep emitting LW radiation and getting colder (until it reaches 0 K, then an equilibrium is reached with zero in, zero out) In reality, an atmosphere of such nature (one filled only with gases that do not absorb LW and SW radiation, e.g., nitrogen) will not go to 0 K. This atmosphere can still maintain a finite temperature by heat conduction (the atmosphere is in contact with the surface of the planet) and convective heat transfer through atmospheric motion. Recall that radiative transfer is but one of the three ways to move heat around.

12 Planetary emission temperature, TE S o / p (S o /) = T E T S T A T S Collect all outgoing LW radiation at the top of the atmosphere and convert it to an "equivalent temperature" by Stefan-Boltzmann relationship, this temperature is our "planetary emission temperature", TE. For Case 3, = S Using S = (2/ ) 1/, we find TE and S TE TE TS (if < 1)

13 We have T A T E T S, because the "planetary emission temperature" T E represents the weighted average of the "warmer" radiation from the surface and the "colder" radiation from the atmosphere COOL T E T S COLD T S WARM

14 = (S o /)(1 - p ) = [(1/ )(S o /)(1 - p )] 1/ The planetary emission temperature (or the total outgoing LW radiation at the top of the atmosphere) depends only on the Solar constant and planetary albedo. The effect of atmospheric greenhouse gases modifies surface temperature and atmospheric temperature profile but it does not alter T E or For example, if we double the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere, Earth's surface will become warmer but the TE or will remain the same as what it was under 1 x CO2. If the doubling of CO2 leads to a change in (say) cloud cover, then planetary albedo could change, potentially leading to a change in TE or This is another story...

15 Summary for Case 3 = [(1/ )(So/)(1 - p)] 1/ S For example, for S0/ = 32 W m -2, p = 0.1, = 0.8, we have TE = 271. K, TA = 25.2 K, and TS = K p (S o /) S o / = T E T S T A T S

16 Case. Two layers of atmosphere, both with 100% IR absorptivity (but remain transparent to SW radiation) TE = T1 in this case p (S o /) S o / T 1 T 1 T 2 T 1 T 2 T S T TOA, = (S o /)(1 - p ) = [(1/ )(S o /)(1 - p )] 1/ Eq. Surface, S = + (S o /)(1 - p ) = + Eq. (2) For layer 2, S = 2 Eq. (3) Combine (1)-(3): S = 3 1/, = 2 1/ T S > T 2 > T 1 Temperature decreases with height

17 Case 5 If we modify Case by adding more layers, the conclusion will remain the same that temperature decreases with height, while the top layer always has the temperature of = [(1/ )(S o /)(1 - p )] 1/. In this case, the surface becomes warmer if we add more (totally absorbing) layers. In other words, as the atmosphere becomes thicker (having more greenhouse gases in it - only greenhouse gases count), the surface of the planet becomes warmer (cf. Prob 6 of Chap 2 in M&P textbook). Try to verify that these points are true.

18 Case 6 If we modify Case or 5 by assuming partial IR absorption ( < 1) for the atmospheric layers, the resulted temperature profile will still decrease with height (surface being the warmest). In this case, like Case 3, the upper layers will be colder than T E while the lower layers and surface will be warmer than T E, where = [(1/ )(S o /)(1 - p )] 1/ is the planetary emission temperature. Try to verify that these points are true.

19 Summary (radiative equilibrium temperature profile) z 100% IR absorbing atmosphere Partially IR absorbing Atmosphere ( < 1) T E T(z)

20 Change in vertical temperature profile under double CO2 (by considering radiative equilibrium alone) Assume that Earth's atmosphere is partially absorbing of IR radiation (which is generally true). As long as planetary albedo doesn't change, TE remains the same even with double CO2 concentration in the atmosphere. The increased greenhouse gas in the atmosphere leads to a warmer surface (and lower atmosphere). In order to keep TE unchanged, the upper atmosphere must cool. (Recall that TE represents the weighted average of the IR emission from the surface and all atmospheric layers). "Global warming" under double CO2 is actually warming at the surface and troposphere, accompanied by cooling in the stratosphere (upper atmosphere). [This is a highly simplified argument that does not take into account the detailed effects of atmospheric motion, water vapor, etc.]

21 A "radiative-convective equilibrium" calculation (that took into account adjustment of temperature by atmospheric convection, and detailed effects of water vapor) Manabe and Wetherald (1967): Notice that surface warming is accompanied by cooling in the upper atmosphere as CO2 concentration increases

22 Questions to ponder: Since the radiative equilibrium temperature profile has higher temperature at the surface and lower layers, would a situation arise such that the lower atmosphere becomes lighter (due to a higher temperature) than the upper atmosphere, leading to an "unstable" density stratification? In short, this can indeed happen if the atmosphere is kept motionless. The "convective adjustment" in previous slide has taken it into account the effect of atmospheric convection in restoring a "neutral" profile. Detail in Chap. 3 Note as well that density of the air depends on both temperature and pressure. While temperature decreases with height, so does pressure (in general). Warmer doesn't always mean lighter. A useful way to compare apple to apple is to adiabatically move all air parcels to the same vertical level (with the same pressure) and compare their final temperatures. This is exactly the exercise in our HW1 Prob 1! z 100% IR absorbing atmosphere Partially IR absorbing Atmosphere ( < 1) T E T(z)

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