Rainbows, Halos and Glories by Robert Greenler

By Robert Greenler

Over 2 hundred illustrations, many in complete color, trap for either the layman and scientist the gorgeous optical results that we see within the sky. the writer describes and explains those results in non-technical language

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5 WATER IN THE ATMOSPHERE Water appears in three states – gas, liquid, and solid. 1. Sources of liquid water include sea spray emission, volcanos, combustion, condensation of water vapor, and melting of ice crystals. Sinks of liquid water include evaporation, freezing, and sedimentation to the surface of aerosol particles, fog drops, drizzle, and raindrops. Ice in the atmosphere forms from freezing of liquid water and solid deposition of water vapor. Losses of ice occur by sublimation to the gas phase, melting to the liquid phase, and sedimentation to the surface.

Water vapor is not only a greenhouse gas (a gas that readily absorbs thermal-infrared radiation), but also a chemical reactant and carrier of latent heat. 2 Carbon dioxide Carbon dioxide gas is produced by cellular respiration in plants and trees, biological decomposition of dead organic matter, evaporation from the oceans, volcanic outgassing, and fossil-fuel combustion. Cellular respiration occurs when oxygen reacts with carbohydrates in the presence of enzymes in living cells to produce CO2 , H2 O, and energy.

The higher its emissivity, the faster a surface, such as soil, cools at night. Albedo (or reflectivity) is the ratio of reflected radiation to incident radiation. For dry sand, the albedo varies from 20 to 40 percent. For clay, it varies from 5 to 20 percent. Thus, sand reflects more solar radiation during the day and emits less infrared radiation at night than does clay, counteracting some of the effects of the low specific heat and thermal conductivity of sand. Large-scale pressure systems also affect temperatures in the boundary layer.

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