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L04-Orbiting-Sphere

L04-Orbiting-Sphere - Natural Environments The Atmosphere...

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Natural Environments: The Atmosphere GE 101 – Spring 2011 Boston University Myneni Lecture 04: Orbiting Sphere Jan-28-11 (1 of 15) Outline Further Reading: Chapter 03 of the text book - earth-sun geometry - definitions - the seasons - diurnal and seasonal variations
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Natural Environments: The Atmosphere GE 101 – Spring 2011 Boston University Myneni Lecture 04: Orbiting Sphere Jan-28-11 (2 of 15) Preludio In last lecture, based on the Shape and Rotation of the Earth we were able to devise Geographical Coordinate Systems and Time. In this lecture we will study the Orbit of the earth about the sun which is the first step in understanding the Energy Balance for various locations on the earth and at various times of the year.
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END OF THE WORLD! The Sun shines by converting hydrogen in its core into helium, and in the process loses mass that is converted to energy via Einstein's E=mc2. It has been doing this for about 4.5 billion years, and is expected to do so for 5 billion more years. After that time, its hydrogen fuel will be depleted. With its internal energy source shut down, gravity will cause the core to collapse. That collapse will generate enough heat to expand its outer layers, turning our Sun into a red giant that will expand beyond the Earth's orbit. (So don't make any plans for the year 5,000,002,000.)
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