How can Uranus have storms hot enough to melt steel? A runaway greenhouse effect?
Written by hockeyschtick.blogspot.co.uk
How does that happen on a planet 30 times further from the Sun than Earth, and without any volcanic activity or SUVs?
From a Mannian/Hansenian runaway-greenhouse radiative-forcing effect?
According to infrared images taken with the Keck telescope, these storms radiate at peak wavelengths of 1.6 – 2.2 microns. Using Wien’s Displacement Law, we can calculate the temperature of a blackbody radiating at these peak wavelengths as:
“the base of the troposphere on the planet Uranus is 320K, considerably hotter than on Earth [288K], despite being nearly 30 times further from the Sun. The base of the troposphere on Uranus is 320K at 100 bars pressure, despite the planet only receiving 3.71 W/m2 energy from the Sun. By the Stefan-Boltzmann Law, a 320K blackbody radiates 584.6 W/m2. This is 157.5 times the energy received from the Sun, due to the atmospheric temperature gradient produced within a planetary gravity field. The temperature at the base of the troposphere is determined by the ideal gas law PV=nRT, where pressure from gravity and atmospheric mass raise the temperature at the base of the troposphere from the equilibrium temperature with the Sun of Uranus of 89.94K to 320K, regardless of the atmospheric mixture of greenhouse gases.”
Note also as stated by the report below,
“These storms on an usually quiet Uranus have astronomers scratching their heads, De Pater said. The three other gassy giant planets — Jupiter, Saturn and Neptune — all seem to have strong internal heat sources, and that energy could help stir up storms in the atmosphere. But Uranus doesn’t appear to have one — which means that the Sun must be mostly responsible for generating such disturbances in the planet’s atmosphere, astronomers had thought.”
“But seven years after the equinox, there is not enough sun to explain these massive storms, De Pater pointed out. So it means that the inner workings of Uranus, which remain hidden from view, are more complex than scientists expected.”
“Well, at least it tells us that the theories have to be adjusted,” De Pater said. “They are not representative of reality.”
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