phy392_lecture01_2011

phy392_lecture01_2011 - PHY392S Physics of Climate Lecture...

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PHY392S - Physics of Climate Lecture 1, Page 1 PHY392S Physics of Climate Lecture 1 Introduction to the Climate System Slides in this and other lectures include material from Prof. Dylan Jones
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PHY392S Overview Course Homepage www.atmosp.physics.utoronto.ca/people/strong/phy392/phy392.html General Information - see handout Topics covered: Global energy balance Radiative transfer The vertical structure of the atmosphere Convection The meridional structure of the atmosphere The general circulation of the atmosphere The ocean and its circulation Climate variability PHY392S - Physics of Climate Lecture 1, Page 2
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Some Definitions Weather the fluctuating state of the atmosphere around us, characterized by the temperature, wind, precipitation, clouds and other weather elements Climate the average weather in terms of the mean and its variability over a certain time-span and a certain area Climate is what we expect, weather is what we get .” Mark Twain Climate change statistically significant variations of the mean state of the climate or of its variability, typically persisting for decades or longer PHY392S - Physics of Climate Lecture 1, Page 4
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The Climate System - 1 The climate system is an interactive system forced or influenced by various external forcing mechanisms , the most important of which is the Sun. The atmosphere is the most unstable and rapidly changing part of the system. The climate of the Earth as a whole depends on factors that influence the radiative balance , such as for example, the atmospheric composition, solar radiation or volcanic eruptions. PHY392S - Physics of Climate Lecture 1, Page 5
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The Composition of the Atmosphere Gas Abundance (%) Nitrogen (N 2 ) 78 Oxygen (O 2 ) 21 Argon (Ar) 0.93 Carbon Dioxide (CO 2 ) 0.038 Neon (Ne) 0.00182 Ozone (O 3 ) < 0.001 Helium (He) 0.00052 Methane (CH 4 ) 0.00017 For Dry Air 99.93% of the atmosphere The abundance of most gases in the atmosphere is quite low and so they are called trace gases PHY392S - Physics of Climate Lecture 1, Page 6
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The Vertical Structure of the Atmosphere The layers of the atmosphere are defined by the variation of temperature with altitude: Troposphere: temperature decreases with altitude Stratosphere: temperature increases with altitude Weak vertical motions in the stratosphere Strong overturning motion (convection) in the troposphere PHY392S - Physics of Climate Lecture 1, Page 7
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Schematic view of the components of the global climate system (bold), their processes and interactions (thin arrows) and some aspects that may change (bold arrows). http://www.grida.no/climate/ipcc_tar/wg1/index.htm The Climate System - 2 Climate system: Atmosphere Hydrosphere Cryosphere Land surface Biosphere PHY392S - Physics of Climate Lecture 1, Page 8
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Soc. 78, 197-208, 1997.
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phy392_lecture01_2011 - PHY392S Physics of Climate Lecture...

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