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So if Angstrom already proven Arrhenius wrong, then what's the problem?


So if Angstrom already proven Arrhenius wrong, then what's the problem?13-03-2019 22:19
Tai Hai Chen
★★★☆☆
(837)
Angstrom was a world class scientist. Arrhenius. Not so much. Mainly a science fiction writer.

Arrhenius's absorption values for CO2 and his conclusions met criticism by Knut Ångström in 1900, who published the first modern infrared absorption spectrum of CO2 with two absorption bands, and published experimental results that seemed to show that absorption of infrared radiation by the gas in the atmosphere was already "saturated" so that adding more could make no difference. Arrhenius replied strongly in 1901 (Annalen der Physik), dismissing the critique altogether. He touched on the subject briefly in a technical book titled Lehrbuch der kosmischen Physik (1903). He later wrote Världarnas utveckling (1906) (German: Das Werden der Welten [1907], English: Worlds in the Making [1908]) directed at a general audience, where he suggested that the human emission of CO2 would be strong enough to prevent the world from entering a new ice age, and that a warmer earth would be needed to feed the rapidly increasing population:

"To a certain extent the temperature of the earth's surface, as we shall presently see, is conditioned by the properties of the atmosphere surrounding it, and particularly by the permeability of the latter for the rays of heat." (p46)

"That the atmospheric envelopes limit the heat losses from the planets had been suggested about 1800 by the great French physicist Fourier. His ideas were further developed afterwards by Pouillet and Tyndall. Their theory has been styled the hot-house theory, because they thought that the atmosphere acted after the manner of the glass panes of hot-houses." (p51)

"If the quantity of carbonic acid [ CO2 + H2O → H2CO3 (carbonic acid) ] in the air should sink to one-half its present percentage, the temperature would fall by about 4°; a diminution to one-quarter would reduce the temperature by 8°. On the other hand, any doubling of the percentage of carbon dioxide in the air would raise the temperature of the earth's surface by 4°; and if the carbon dioxide were increased fourfold, the temperature would rise by 8°." (p53)

"Although the sea, by absorbing carbonic acid, acts as a regulator of huge capacity, which takes up about five-sixths of the produced carbonic acid, we yet recognize that the slight percentage of carbonic acid in the atmosphere may by the advances of industry be changed to a noticeable degree in the course of a few centuries." (p54)

"Since, now, warm ages have alternated with glacial periods, even after man appeared on the earth, we have to ask ourselves: Is it probable that we shall in the coming geological ages be visited by a new ice period that will drive us from our temperate countries into the hotter climates of Africa? There does not appear to be much ground for such an apprehension. The enormous combustion of coal by our industrial establishments suffices to increase the percentage of carbon dioxide in the air to a perceptible degree." (p61)

"We often hear lamentations that the coal stored up in the earth is wasted by the present generation without any thought of the future, and we are terrified by the awful destruction of life and property which has followed the volcanic eruptions of our days. We may find a kind of consolation in the consideration that here, as in every other case, there is good mixed with the evil. By the influence of the increasing percentage of carbonic acid in the atmosphere, we may hope to enjoy ages with more equable and better climates, especially as regards the colder regions of the earth, ages when the earth will bring forth much more abundant crops than at present, for the benefit of rapidly propagating mankind." (p63)

At this time, the accepted consensus explanation is that, historically, orbital forcing has set the timing for ice ages, with CO2 acting as an essential amplifying feedback.[28][29] However, CO2 releases since the industrial revolution have increased CO2 to a level not found since 10 to 15 million years ago, when the global average surface temperature was up to 11 °F (6 °C) warmer than now and almost all ice had melted, raising world sea-levels to about 100 feet higher than today's.[30]

Arrhenius estimated based on the CO2 levels at his time, that reducing levels by 0.62 – 0.55 would decrease temperatures by 4–5 °C (Celsius) and an increase of 2.5 to 3 times of CO2 would cause a temperature rise of 8–9 °C in the Arctic.[21][31] In his book Worlds in the Making he described the "hot-house" theory of the atmosphere.[32]

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Svante_Arrhenius
14-03-2019 00:39
Into the Night
★★★★★
(7003)
While the Arrhenius's theory of CO2 warming the Earth has been falsified (by the Stefan-Boltzmann law and the laws of thermodynamics), he DID manage to produce detailed measurements the absorption spectra of several gases (including CO2). He also developed the theory of disassociation during electrolysis, which he received a Nobel prize for. That theory is still part of the body of science today.

Don't discount him on a single failure of a theory. Most scientists have failed theories. Svante Arrhenius was a great scientist. He just got it wrong about CO2 warming the Earth (or any other planet). Don't let that discount his other contributions to science, though.
Edited on 14-03-2019 00:39
14-03-2019 01:38
Wake
★★★★★
(3903)
Arrhenius' idea of scientific experimentation was to read the papers of other people and to make prognostications on them. The forerunner of NOAA was the Department of the Interior or some such and they also printed a critique of Arrhenius stating the rather obvious - if there is no energy to absorb, there is no energy to slow the escape of leading to atmospheric warming.
14-03-2019 02:07
Tai Hai Chen
★★★☆☆
(837)
Into the Night wrote:
While the Arrhenius's theory of CO2 warming the Earth has been falsified (by the Stefan-Boltzmann law and the laws of thermodynamics), he DID manage to produce detailed measurements the absorption spectra of several gases (including CO2). He also developed the theory of disassociation during electrolysis, which he received a Nobel prize for. That theory is still part of the body of science today.

Don't discount him on a single failure of a theory. Most scientists have failed theories. Svante Arrhenius was a great scientist. He just got it wrong about CO2 warming the Earth (or any other planet). Don't let that discount his other contributions to science, though.


Arrhenius was a low caliber scientist compared to Angstrom. Angstrom has wavelength physical unit named after him. Arrhenius does not. A lot of people win Nobel prize. Winning Nobel prize does not make a scientist top caliber.




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