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UH / Geology / GEOL 1302 / What do you call the reflectivity of a planet?

What do you call the reflectivity of a planet?

What do you call the reflectivity of a planet?


School: University of Houston
Department: Geology
Course: Introduction to Global Climate Change
Professor: Yunsoo choi
Term: Fall 2016
Cost: 50
Name: GEOL 1302, Exam 2 Study Guide
Description: covers chapters 4 - 6
Uploaded: 10/08/2016
7 Pages 170 Views 4 Unlocks

The second exam of GEOL1302: Introduction to Climate Change

What do you call the reflectivity of a planet?

1. Please choose incorrect description.  

(a) The ultimate source of energy for our planet is the Sun, which puts  out an amazing 3.8 x 10^26 W (380 trillion trillion W) of power.  (b) The Sun emits photons in all directions, so only a small fraction of the  photons emitted end up falling on the Earth.  

(c) The 1,360 W/m^2 is known as the solar constant for the Earth; it is  represented in certain equations by the symbol S.  

(d) The solar constant is function of how far the sunlight is delivering at  the planet’s orbit.  

2. Please choose incorrect description.  

(a) The reflectivity of a planet is called the albedo, from the Latin word for “whiteness.”

What is the formula for energy in a planet?

(b) The albedo of the earth is usually represented by the Greek Letter α (alpha).  

(c) The Earth absorbs an average of 238 W/m2 from the Sun, but that does  not mean that every square meter of the Earth absorbs this amount.  (d) The amount of sunlight received is at maximum if the surface is oriented perpendicular to the incoming beam.  

3. Please choose incorrect description.  Don't forget about the age old question of Where is the sigmoid flexure?

(a) The tropics are mainly open ocean, which is dark and therefore has a  low albedo.  We also discuss several other topics like Who are the achaeans in the odyssey?

(b) In one-layer model, the Earth’s atmosphere is transparent to visible  photons emitted by the Sun (which have wavelengths from 0.3 – 0.8  µm), so these photons speed through the atmosphere and reach the surface.  

What are some examples of greenhouse gases?

If you want to learn more check out How is replacement cost calculated?

(c) In one-layer model, the atmosphere is opaque to infrared photons  emitted by the surface (wavelengths from 4 – 20 µm), and so all of  these photons are absorbed by the atmosphere.  

(d) In one-layer model, the atmosphere also behaves like a blackbody, so  it emits photons based on its temperature.  If you want to learn more check out What is our best explanation for the fall of civilizations in the aegean region that was followed by a descent into a centuries-long "dark age"?

4. Please choose incorrect description.  

(a) Mercury is the planet closest to the Sun, yet Venus, twice as far from the  Sun as Mercury, has a surface temperature that is approximately  300 K warmer.  

(b) The inferred n for Mercury is near zero, suggesting it has almost no  greenhouse effect.  

(c) The greenhouse effect on Mars is expected to be weaker than that on  Earth.

(d) The result of the massive, greenhouse-gas-rich atmosphere is a planet  hotter than the inside of your oven on boil – hot enough even to  melt lead.  

5. What is the right equation for energy in for a planet?  Don't forget about the age old question of How do vectors help replicate inserted dna?

(a) (b) (c) (d)  

E¿ = S (1−α) If you want to learn more check out What is the main function of the microtubules?


6. What is the surface area of a sphere with radius r?  

(a) (b) (c) (d)  

4 π r^2 = 4π (150 million km)^2 = 2.8 x 10^17 km^2 = 2.8 x  10^23 m^2

7. A planet in another solar system has a solar constant S=2000 W/m^2, and the distance between the planet and the star is 100 million km. What is the  total power output of the star (in W)? hint: use 4πr^2 * S.  

(a) (b) (c) (d)  

P = 4πr^2 * S S = 2000 W/m^2 π = 3.14 r = 100,000,000 km = 100,000,000,000 m  

100,000,000 km x 1,000 m/1 km = 100,000,000,000 m  P = 4(3.14)(100,000,000,000 m)^2(2000 W/m^2) = 2.512 x 10^20 W 

8. Alex and Jane argue about why Venus is so much warmer than the Earth.  Alex argues that it is because …... Jane argues that it is because ….. Which  person is right?  

(a) Alex (b) Jane

Venus is twice as far from the Sun as Mercury, has a surface  temperature that is approximately 300 K warmer. This result  becomes even more puzzling when we realized that, because of its  high albedo, the energy in for Venus, S(1 – α )/4 = 200 W/m^2, is  more than a factor of 10 smaller than that for Mercury (2,250  W/m^2). It is even less than the energy in for the Earth (238  W/m^2) – yet Venus is approximately 450 K hotter than the Earth.  Venus is so much hotter than Earth’s, not because its atmosphere  contains so much CO2, but because it is some 30% closer to the sun, and its atmosphere is 90 times denser at surface level than Earth’s.

9. One argument you hear against mainstream climate science is that adding greenhouse gases to the atmosphere is like painting a window. Eventually,  the window is opaque, so that adding another coat of paint does  nothing. Is this a good analogy?  

(a) Yes (b) No

The greenhouse gases are like paining a window is not a good  analogy. By adding more into the atmosphere, eventually it will  become ineffective to our planet. This analogy deflects some of the  studies and research that has been done on greenhouse gases.  

10. Please choose the incorrect description.  

(a) The greenhouse effect occurs because our atmosphere is basically transparent to visible photons but absorbs infrared photons.  (b) The abundance of water vapor varies widely from place to place.  (c) Water vapor is the most abundant and important greenhouse gas in  our atmosphere.  

(d) Ozone is a final greenhouse gas, which is a molecule made up of  three oxygen atoms, so its chemical formula is O3 .  

11. What is not among greenhouse gases?  

(a) (b) (c) (d)  

Diatomic nitrogen, Diatomic oxygen, and argon are not greenhouse  gases at all  

12. Please choose the incorrect description.  

(a) Plants absorb carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and use it to produce  more plant material in a process known as photosynthesis: C O2+H2 O + sunlight → C H2 O + O2 

(b) The production of a carbohydrate through photosynthesis followed by its  consumption during respiration therefore produces no net change in  either carbon dioxide or molecular oxygen.  

(c) The atmosphere contained approximately 740 gigatonnes of carbon  (GtC).  

(d) The land biosphere contains 2,000 GtC or so, stored in living plants and  animals, and in organic carbon in soils (e.g., decaying leaves).  

13. Please choose the incorrect description.  

(a) During the northern hemisphere’s fall and winter (October – April),  plant material that was produced during the spring and summer decays,  releasing carbon back into the atmosphere in the form of carbon  dioxide.  

(b) Carbon dioxide readily dissolves in water.  

(c) Once CO2 has dissolved in water, it is converted to carbonic acid ( H2C O3 ) by means of this reaction: C O2+H2 O → H2 CO3

(d) The mixed layer is well mixed by winds and strong weather events,  such as hurricanes.  

14. Please choose the incorrect description.

(a) Approximately 100 GtC per year are continuously cycling between the  atmosphere and land biosphere as plants absorb carbon dioxide as they  grow and then release carbon dioxide when they die.  (b) A carbon atom stays in the atmosphere for only four years or so before it  is transferred into the land biosphere or ocean.  

(c) The turnover time of carbon in the land biosphere is 2,000 GtC divided  by 100 GtC/yr = 20 years. This means that a carbon atom in the land biosphere will stay there for approximately 20 years before being  transferred into the atmosphere.  

(d) The atmosphere exchanges carbon rapidly with the land biosphere and  mixed layer, and much more slowly (time scale of centuries) with the  deep ocean.  

15. Please choose the incorrect description.  

(a) Most of the carbon in the world – many millions of gigatons of carbons – is stored in rocks, such as limestone (CaCO3), and this carbon is slowly  exchanging with the atmosphere-land biosphere-ocean system.  (b) The volcanic emissions of carbon dioxide from the rock reservoir are  roughly balanced by a process known as chemical weathering, which  removes about an equal amount of carbon from the atmosphere land biosphere-ocean reservoir and transfers it back into rocks.  (c) Once in the ocean, the molecules of calcium carbonate are deposited  through various mechanisms on the sea floor.  

(d) When fossil fuels are burned, the net reaction is similar to the  respiration reaction.  

16. Please choose the incorrect description.  

(a) The chemical properties of an atom are for the most part set by the  number of protons, so isotopes tend to have very similar chemical  properties.  

(b) Carbon-14 is known as radiocarbon because it is radioactive. That  means its nucleus is unstable and converts back to nitrogen-14 with a half-life of approximately 6,000 years.  

(c) Methane is emitted to the atmosphere from coal mines adds 50 million tons per year.  

(d) In the last decade, about two third of the methane emissions are due  to human activities, whereas one third is from natural resources.  

17. What is the process that transfers carbon from the atmosphere to the  land?  

(a) (b)  

There are many processes that transfer carbon from atmosphere to  land like photosynthesis, fossil pools, net terrestrial uptake, and net ocean uptake.

18. Of the carbon dioxide humans add to the climate, approximately half is  removed within a year. Where does it go?  

(a) All go (b) All go into the (c) Half goes into Half goes into the ocean and half goes into the land-biosphere

19. Please choose the incorrect description.  

(a) The ocean mixed layer is in contact with the atmosphere, so greenhouse  gases intercept some of the energy escaping to space and redirect  it back toward the surface. In this way, greenhouse gases both  reduce energy out for the planet and increase energy in for the  surface, thereby warming the planet.  

(b) If we stopped emitting greenhouse gases today, the climate would still  experience approximately a half a degree warming over the next  few decades.  

(c) Radiative forcing is the change in Ein – Eout for the planet as a result  of some change imposed on the planet before the temperature of the  planet has adjusted in response:  

RF = Δ (Ein – Eout) = Δ Ein – Δ Eout  

(d) An important source of stratospheric water vapor is the transport of  methane into the stratosphere followed by oxidation, which has this  net reaction: C H4+2O2 → 2 H2O+¿ C O2 

20. Please choose the incorrect description.  

(a) Aerosols are particles so small that they do not fall under the force of  gravity, but remain suspended in the atmosphere for days or weeks.  (b) Sulfate aerosols are highly reflective and reflect incoming solar  radiation back to space, so their net effect is to cool the climate.  (c) Volcanoes emit enormous amounts of sulfur gas, and energetic  eruptions can inject it directly into the stratosphere.  (d) A few years after a volcanic eruption into the stratosphere,  stratospheric aerosols fall out of the stratosphere and the climate  warms back up.  

21. Please choose the incorrect description.  

(a) Most of dust comes from natural processes, such as dust picked up off  the world’s deserts by strong winds.  

(b) Approximately 20 % of mineral dust comes from anthropogenic  sources – mainly agricultural practices (e.g., harvesting, plowing,  overgrazing), changes in surface water features (e.g., drying out of  lakes such as the Aral Sea and Lake Owens) and industrial practices  (e.g., cement production, transport).  

(c) If you add aerosols to a cloud, then you will increase the number of  CCN – and therefore the number of cloud droplets making up the  cloud.

(d) A cloud containing smaller droplets is more reflective than bigger  droplets.  

22. Please choose the incorrect descriptions.  

(a) Considering all the effects of aerosols on clouds, scientists estimate that  the indirect aerosol effect produces a negative radiative forcing of  -0.7 W/m^2.  

(b) Because aerosols last only a few weeks in the atmosphere before they  are removed, aerosols do not have time to become well mixed  throughout the atmosphere (which takes a year or so).  (c) From a climate perspective, the negative radiative forcing from aerosols  offsets 40% or so of the positive radiative forcing that is due to  greenhouse gases.  

(d) Agricultural land typically has a higher albedo than does the natural  landscape, especially if the latter is forest.  

23. Please choose the incorrect description.  

(a) Summing all the radiative forcings in the period between 1750 and 2005,  we get a net radiating forcing of +1.6 W/m^2.  

(b) A positive feedback is to amplify an initial warming.  (c) The biggest negative feedback is known as lapse-rate feedback.  (d) Water vapor, clouds, and the lapse rate respond within a week or in a  few years.  

24. Which process is related to slow feedback?  

(a) (b) (c) (d)  

Ice-albedo feedback

25. Here are fast feedbacks operating in our climate. Please choose the  incorrect description. (a) Water vapor: gwv = 0.6

(b) Lapse-rate: glr=−0.3

(c) Ice-albedo: gia=0.1

(d) Cloud: gcloud=0.0−0.3

26. Imaging that we add some carbon dioxide to the atmosphere and the  Earth warms by 1◦C. How much warming would there have been if there  were no feedback?  

(a) (b) (c) (d)  

About one third of that value, 0.3°C.

27. In the northern hemisphere, Ein maximizes on June 21, when the sun is  most directly overhead. You might therefore expect temperature to be

highest on that day. But for the U.S. Gulf Coast, temperatures do not reach  their hottest temperatures …………………... Is it true?  

(a) Yes (b) No  

This period is called solstice  

28. (from problem 27) what makes this occurrence?  

(a) Large mass …. (b) Many … (c) Large mass …  (d) A lot of …  

This is because of tilt of the earth axis of rotation with respect to its orbital path around the sun. The axis of rotations imaginary line  drawn straight through earth connecting north pole to south pole.  This line is tilted 23.5 degrees from earth’s orbital path around the  sun. This mean that the sun does not hit earth evenly at particular  latitude above the equator

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