Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Stratosphere temperature data support scientists’ proof for global warming

30.11.2004


A new interpretation for temperature data from satellites, published earlier this year, raised controversy when its authors claimed it eliminated doubt that, on average, the lower atmosphere is getting warmer as fast as the Earth’s surface.

Now, in another study headed by the same researcher to be published Dec. 15 in the Journal of Climate, direct temperature data from other scientists has validated the satellite interpretation. A team headed by Qiang Fu, a University of Washington atmospheric sciences associate professor, earlier examined measurements collected from January 1979 through December 2001 by devices called microwave-sounding units on National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration satellites. Different channels of the microwave-sounding units measure radiation at different frequencies, providing data for different layers of the atmosphere.

In the case of the troposphere, the layer from the surface to an altitude of about 7.5 miles, where most weather occurs, it was believed there had been less warming than what was recorded at the surface. However, Fu’s team determined the satellite readings of the troposphere were imprecise because about one-fifth of the signal actually came from a higher atmosphere layer called the stratosphere, which for the last few decades has been cooling several times faster than the troposphere has been warming. The group devised a method to remove the stratosphere signal from the satellite data and was left with results that closely matched the warming at the surface. That work was published in May in the journal Nature.



However, critics contended the method overcompensated for the cooling effects of the stratosphere and thus overstated the amount of warming in the troposphere. The criticisms did not appear in peer-reviewed journals. In the new study, Fu and Celeste Johanson, a UW atmospheric sciences graduate student, used direct stratosphere temperature measurements to examine the contamination from the stratosphere in the satellite channel that measures troposphere temperatures. They also used the same data to evaluate their method for removing the stratosphere contamination. The data they used came from scientists at NOAA and the Hadley Centre for Climate Prediction and Research in England.

Using the direct stratosphere temperature trend profiles from 1979 through 2001, Fu’s team found that the stratosphere contamination in the satellite channel measuring the troposphere amounted to about a minus one-tenth of a degree Celsius per decade. They used their new method to remove the contamination, leaving an influence from the stratosphere of less than one-hundredth of a degree on troposphere temperature trends. The results match closely with what would be expected from the Fu team’s new interpretation of satellite data. "These results are consistent with the results that the Nature paper gets," Fu said. "It is an independent check of the problem because we used completely independent data sets. The independent observations agree with our conclusions, and that’s quite powerful evidence."

The Fu team’s work indicates the troposphere has been warming at about two-tenths of a degree Celsius, or nearly one-third of a degree Fahrenheit, per decade. That closely resembles measurements of warming at the surface, something climate models have suggested would result if the warmer surface temperatures are the result of greenhouse gases.

The findings are important because, for years, satellite data inconsistent with warming at the surface have fueled the debate about whether climate change is actually occurring.

If contamination of troposphere signals by those from the stratosphere isn’t taken into account for the last 25 years, Fu said, estimates of how much warming actually occurred in the troposphere during that time would be off by 40 percent to 70 percent.

Vince Stricherz | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.washington.edu

More articles from Earth Sciences:

nachricht NASA eyes Pineapple Express soaking California
24.02.2017 | NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center

nachricht 'Quartz' crystals at the Earth's core power its magnetic field
23.02.2017 | Tokyo Institute of Technology

All articles from Earth Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Breakthrough with a chain of gold atoms

In the field of nanoscience, an international team of physicists with participants from Konstanz has achieved a breakthrough in understanding heat transport

In the field of nanoscience, an international team of physicists with participants from Konstanz has achieved a breakthrough in understanding heat transport

Im Focus: DNA repair: a new letter in the cell alphabet

Results reveal how discoveries may be hidden in scientific “blind spots”

Cells need to repair damaged DNA in our genes to prevent the development of cancer and other diseases. Our cells therefore activate and send “repair-proteins”...

Im Focus: Dresdner scientists print tomorrow’s world

The Fraunhofer IWS Dresden and Technische Universität Dresden inaugurated their jointly operated Center for Additive Manufacturing Dresden (AMCD) with a festive ceremony on February 7, 2017. Scientists from various disciplines perform research on materials, additive manufacturing processes and innovative technologies, which build up components in a layer by layer process. This technology opens up new horizons for component design and combinations of functions. For example during fabrication, electrical conductors and sensors are already able to be additively manufactured into components. They provide information about stress conditions of a product during operation.

The 3D-printing technology, or additive manufacturing as it is often called, has long made the step out of scientific research laboratories into industrial...

Im Focus: Mimicking nature's cellular architectures via 3-D printing

Research offers new level of control over the structure of 3-D printed materials

Nature does amazing things with limited design materials. Grass, for example, can support its own weight, resist strong wind loads, and recover after being...

Im Focus: Three Magnetic States for Each Hole

Nanometer-scale magnetic perforated grids could create new possibilities for computing. Together with international colleagues, scientists from the Helmholtz Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf (HZDR) have shown how a cobalt grid can be reliably programmed at room temperature. In addition they discovered that for every hole ("antidot") three magnetic states can be configured. The results have been published in the journal "Scientific Reports".

Physicist Dr. Rantej Bali from the HZDR, together with scientists from Singapore and Australia, designed a special grid structure in a thin layer of cobalt in...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Booth and panel discussion – The Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings at the AAAS 2017 Annual Meeting

13.02.2017 | Event News

Complex Loading versus Hidden Reserves

10.02.2017 | Event News

International Conference on Crystal Growth in Freiburg

09.02.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Stingless bees have their nests protected by soldiers

24.02.2017 | Life Sciences

New risk factors for anxiety disorders

24.02.2017 | Life Sciences

MWC 2017: 5G Capital Berlin

24.02.2017 | Trade Fair News

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>