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Author Topic: Cosmic rays and climate change  (Read 9115 times)

another_someone

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Cosmic rays and climate change
« on: 08/10/2006 21:15:38 »
http://spacecenter.dk/cgi-bin/nyheder-m-m.cgi?id=1159917791
quote:

October 4th 2006
Getting closer to the cosmic connection to climate

A team at the Danish National Space Center has discovered how cosmic rays from exploding stars can help to make clouds in the atmosphere. The results support the theory that cosmic rays influence Earth’s climate.

An essential role for remote stars in everyday weather on Earth has been revealed by an experiment at the Danish National Space Center in Copenhagen. It is already well-established that when cosmic rays, which are high-speed atomic particles originating in exploded stars far away in the Milky Way, penetrate Earth’s atmosphere they produce substantial amounts of ions and release free electrons. Now, results from the Danish experiment show that the released electrons significantly promote the formation of building blocks for cloud condensation nuclei on which water vapour condenses to make clouds. Hence, a causal mechanism by which cosmic rays can facilitate the production of clouds in Earth’s atmosphere has been experimentally identified for the first time.

The Danish team officially announce their discovery on Wednesday in Proceedings of the Royal Society A, published by the Royal Society, the British national academy of science.

The experiment

The experiment called SKY (Danish for ‘cloud’) took place in a large reaction chamber which contained a mixture of gases at realistic concentrations to imitate the chemistry of the lower atmosphere. Ultraviolet lamps mimicked the action of the Sun’s rays. During experimental runs, instruments traced the chemical action of the penetrating cosmic rays in the reaction chamber.

The data revealed that electrons released by cosmic rays act as catalysts, which significantly accelerate the formation of stable, ultra-small clusters of sulphuric acid and water molecules which are building blocks for the cloud condensation nuclei. A vast numbers of such microscopic droplets appeared, floating in the air in the reaction chamber.

‘We were amazed by the speed and efficiency with which the electrons do their work of creating the building blocks for the cloud condensation nuclei,’ says team leader Henrik Svensmark, who is Director of the Center for Sun-Climate Research within the Danish National Space Center. ‘This is a completely new result within climate science.’

A missing link in climate theory

The experimental results lend strong empirical support to the theory proposed a decade ago by Henrik Svensmark and Eigil Friis-Christensen that cosmic rays influence Earth’s climate through their effect on cloud formation. The original theory rested on data showing a strong correlation between variation in the intensity of cosmic radiation penetrating the atmosphere and the amount of low-altitude clouds. Cloud cover increases when the intensity of cosmic rays grows and decreases when the intensity declines.

It is known that low-altitude clouds have an overall cooling effect on the Earth’s surface. Hence, variations in cloud cover caused by cosmic rays can change the surface temperature. The existence of such a cosmic connection to Earth’s climate might thus help to explain past and present variations in Earth’s climate.

Interestingly, during the 20th Century, the Sun’s magnetic field which shields Earth from cosmic rays more than doubled, thereby reducing the average influx of cosmic rays. The resulting reduction in cloudiness, especially of low-altitude clouds, may be a significant factor in the global warming Earth has undergone during the last century. However, until now, there has been no experimental evidence of how the causal mechanism linking cosmic rays and cloud formation may work.

‘Many climate scientists have considered the linkages from cosmic rays to clouds to climate as unproven,’ comments Eigil Friis-Christensen, who is now Director of the Danish National Space Center. ‘Some said there was no conceivable way in which cosmic rays could influence cloud cover. The SKY experiment now shows how they do so, and should help to put the cosmic-ray connection firmly onto the agenda of international climate research.’

Publication data

Published online in “Proceedings of the Royal Society A”, October 3rd

Title:  ‘Experimental Evidence for the role of Ions in Particle Nucleation under Atmospheric Conditions’.

Authors:  Henrik Svensmark, Jens Olaf Pepke Pedersen, Nigel Marsh, Martin Enghoff and Ulrik Uggerhøj.

For more information and supporting material: www.spacecenter.dk/media
Requests for interview and original article: press-requests@spacecenter.dk






George


 

Offline crandles

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Re: Cosmic rays and climate change
« Reply #1 on: 09/10/2006 01:26:00 »
http://scienceblogs.com/stoat/2006/10/news_from_outer_space.php#comments

quote:
Perhaps unsurprisingly, it is somewhat less dramatic than the press release. Or in my readers words: "What's noteworthy is the complete lack of discussion of the implications in the Proc RS A paper, but not in the press release. I'm guessing that the reviewers told them to throw out all the unsubstantiated speculation and stick to the facts. We can expect to see this spun wildly...". Aha! A prediction... the essence of science!
 

Offline erich

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Re: Cosmic rays and climate change
« Reply #2 on: 12/10/2006 05:55:39 »
More Earth and Space Weather Conections:

http://www.nasa.gov/centers/goddard/...ther_link.html


First Global Connection Between Earth And Space Weather Found

09.12.06


Weather on Earth has a surprising connection to space weather occurring high in the electrically-charged upper atmosphere, known as the ionosphere, according to new results from NASA satellites.

"This discovery will help improve forecasts of turbulence in the ionosphere, which can disrupt radio transmissions and the reception of signals from the Global Positioning System," said Thomas Immel of the University of California, Berkeley, lead author of a paper on the research published August 11 in Geophysical Research Letters.

Researchers discovered that tides of air generated by intense thunderstorm activity over South America, Africa and Southeast Asia were altering the structure of the ionosphere.


Erich

Erich J. Knight
 

Offline erich

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Re: Cosmic rays and climate change
« Reply #3 on: 23/10/2006 06:29:39 »
Percentage of low clouds due to Cosmic Rays:

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Here are the best numbers I've found for the % of low clouds due to Cosmic Rays:

“… cosmic rays. These high-energy particles originate in outer space and in solar flares, and can have a small but significant effect on the weather, increasing the chances of an overcast day by nearly 20 per cent.
Giles Harrison and David Stephenson from the University of Reading, UK, examined 50 years of solar radiation measurements from sites all over the country, enabling them to calculate daily changes in cloudiness. By comparing this data with neutron counts - a measure of cosmic ray activity - for the same period, the scientists have shown an unambiguous link between cosmic rays and clouds (Proceedings of the Royal Society A, DOI: 10.1098/rspa.2005.1628).
"The odds of a cloudy day increase by around 20 per cent when the cosmic ray flux is high," says Harrison, amounting to a few extra days of cloudiness per year.”

http://www.newscientist.com/article....mg18925365.700




Erich J. Knight
 

Offline erich

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Re: Cosmic rays and climate change
« Reply #4 on: 27/10/2006 05:12:56 »
Sorry for the bad link, hope this works:

First Global Connection Between Earth And Space Weather Found
http://www.physorg.com/news77293757.html


More interesting grist for the Plasma/weather interactions:

Cluster makes turbulent breakthrough

http://physicsweb.org/articles/news/9/8/7
 

Offline erich

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Re: Cosmic rays and climate change
« Reply #5 on: 01/11/2006 18:42:15 »
After reading a little deeper into Rabett's blog.......... this Real Climate discussion has comments from Martin B Enghoff the author of the paper that started this thread.


http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2006/10/taking-cosmic-rays-for-a-spin/
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 I finaly  finished this long Real Climate thread and they have this topic covered! I strongly suggest all to read it.
 

Offline erich

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Re: Cosmic rays and climate change
« Reply #6 on: 02/11/2006 17:00:07 »
The current Nature has a couple studies, a little off topic concerning sun forcing of climate .......but these measurements do provide an Earth magnetic field history 800,000 years ago and implies stability of geodynamo processes on billion-year timescales.


http://www.nature.com/nature/journal...061102-05.html
 

Offline erich

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Re: Cosmic rays and climate change
« Reply #7 on: 06/11/2006 23:14:43 »
 

Offline erich

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Re: Cosmic rays and climate change
« Reply #8 on: 09/11/2006 04:50:34 »
Paleoclimatologists seem to have been at this debate for awhile:


In Ancient Fossils, Seeds of a New Debate on Warming :

http://www.nytimes.com/2006/11/07/science/earth/07co2.html?_r=1&adxnnl=1&oref=slogin&adxnnlx=1163040380-4WpeNZPFSlpKXwMAB7v2DQ


Here is the blog in which I found this article, Lounge of the Lab Lemming

http://lablemminglounge.blogspot.com/2006/11/jan-veizens-cosmic-ray-climatology.html
 

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Re: Cosmic rays and climate change
« Reply #8 on: 09/11/2006 04:50:34 »

 

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