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What about energy from human activities - e.g.all these Abombs and rockets? &.......(fill in)
To be honest, I did come across these two experiments:http://www.espere.net/Unitedkingdom/water/uk_watexpgreenhouse.htm
I did check the textbook on the absorption issue. It says that a little energy is indeed absorbed, but most of the infra red is re-emitted back. So I think all three of us were right? I think my mirror protrayal is still reasonable.
"and re-radiate it in all directions including back to Earth"it is just a choice of words, re-radiate= reflect?So, to explain to you the cooling effect of humidity and carbon dioxide that I have observed I could say: the infra red from the sun is absorbed and re-radiated in all directions including back to space (for at least 50%). I assume you know the properties of light? It cannot get stuck in the atmosphere. No need for insulting pictures.
Water and carbon dioxide behave similarly when exposed to infra red radiation. Each molecule accepts one or more photons. Once this transaction is completed the molecule becomes sort of like a little mirror to infra red radiation and the molecules start reflecting the infra red. Because of the random position of the molecules we may assume that at least 50% of the infra red from earth is radiated back to earth. The process repeats itself.
If carbon dioxide traps infra red radiation from earth (keeping us warm) then it must follow that carbon dioxide also shields us from the sun blocking infra red(similar to ozone blocking UV).
This light cannot "stay" in the atmosphere!