EESA01H3 Lecture Notes - Lecture 4: Shortwave Radiation, Heat Flux, Solar Irradiance

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Published on 6 Dec 2015
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EESA01 – Lecture 4
***Continuation of unfinished lecture 3 slides
Refer to Lecture 3 notes for further details
A cut through Earth
- Dense iron core, solid at its centre, molten surrounding it
- In the upper mantle, the asthenosphere is soft rock, near its melting point or
already molten
- The lithosphere floats on top of the upper mantle
- Convection moves the tectonic plates of the lithosphere
Basics of Energy and Climate
- A warm substance is warm because it holds more energy than a cold
substance
- If a warm substance cools down, it is due to energy leaving the substance
- In a steady-state Earth, incoming energy will equal outgoing energy over a
period of time
- If this doesn’t occur, the Earth will gradually start to warm up or cool down
- The climate is all about energy fluxes and balance between incoming and
outgoing energy
- Energy cannot be created or destroyed, only transferred
Earth is “Open” to Energy
- Insolation is energy received from the Sun
- Insolation is “shortwave” radiation
- Shortwave radiation inputs include
i. UV light
ii. Visible light
iii. Near-infrared wavelengths
- Insolation drives most processes on Earth
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