Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Apparent Problem With Global Warming Climate Models Resolved

Date:
May 30, 2008
Source:
Yale University
Summary:
Yale University scientists may have resolved a controversial glitch in models of global warming: A key part of the atmosphere didn't seem to be warming as expected. Computer models and basic principles predict atmospheric temperatures should rise slightly faster than, not lag, increases in surface temperatures. Also, the models predict the fastest warming should occur at the Tropics at an altitude between eight and 12 kilometers. However, temperature readings taken from weather balloons and satellites have, according to most analysts, shown little if any warming there compared to the surface.

Small island in Pacific Ocean off Hawaii. By measuring changes in winds, rather than relying upon problematic temperature measurements, researchers estimated the atmospheric temperatures near 10 km in the Tropics rose about 0.65 degrees Celsius per decade since 1970 --- probably the fastest warming rate anywhere in Earth's atmosphere. The temperature increase is in line with predictions of global warming models.
Credit: Copyright Michele Hogan

Yale University scientists reported that they may have resolved a controversial glitch in models of global warming: A key part of the atmosphere didn't seem to be warming as expected.

Related Articles


Computer models and basic principles predict atmospheric temperatures should rise slightly faster than, not lag, increases in surface temperatures. Also, the models predict the fastest warming should occur at the Tropics at an altitude between eight and 12 kilometers. However, temperature readings taken from weather balloons and satellites have, according to most analysts, shown little if any warming there compared to the surface.

By measuring changes in winds, rather than relying upon problematic temperature measurements, Robert J. Allen and Steven C. Sherwood of the Department of Geology and Geophysics at Yale estimated the atmospheric temperatures near 10 km in the Tropics rose about 0.65 degrees Celsius per decade since 1970—probably the fastest warming rate anywhere in Earth's atmosphere. The temperature increase is in line with predictions of global warming models.

“I think this puts to rest any lingering doubts that the atmosphere really has been warming up more or less as we expect, due mainly to the greenhouse effect of increasing gases like carbon dioxide,” Sherwood said.

Many scientists, including Allen and Sherwood, have long argued that temperature data were flawed for many reasons such as the change of instrument design over the years. “These systems were never designed for measuring climate change,” said Sherwood. However, some global warming skeptics had argued that weather balloon temperatures were accurate—and models that predicted global warming were wrong.

Allen and Sherwood predicted that measuring thermal winds, which are tied to fluctuations in temperatures, would be a more accurate gauge of true atmospheric warming than the thermometers. To measure the thermal winds, they studied data on the motion of weather balloons at different altitudes in the atmosphere. They then calculated temperatures that would account for the wind velocity recorded.

The findings were reported online May 18 in the journal Nature Geoscience.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Yale University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Allen et al. Warming maximum in the tropical upper troposphere deduced from thermal winds. Nature Geoscience, 25 May 2008 DOI: 10.1038/ngeo208

Cite This Page:

Yale University. "Apparent Problem With Global Warming Climate Models Resolved." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 30 May 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/05/080530144943.htm>.
Yale University. (2008, May 30). Apparent Problem With Global Warming Climate Models Resolved. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 24, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/05/080530144943.htm
Yale University. "Apparent Problem With Global Warming Climate Models Resolved." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/05/080530144943.htm (accessed October 24, 2014).

Share This



More Earth & Climate News

Friday, October 24, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Dances With Wolves in China's Wild West

Dances With Wolves in China's Wild West

AFP (Oct. 23, 2014) One man is on a mission to boost the population of wolves in China's violence-wracked far west. The animal - symbol of the Uighur minority there - is under threat with a massive human resettlement program in the region. Duration: 00:41 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
San Diego Zoo's White Rhinos Provide Hope for the Critically Endangered Species

San Diego Zoo's White Rhinos Provide Hope for the Critically Endangered Species

Reuters - Light News Video Online (Oct. 22, 2014) The pair of rare white northern rhinos bring hope for their species as only six remain in the world. Elly Park reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Trick-or-Treating Banned Because of Polar Bears

Trick-or-Treating Banned Because of Polar Bears

Buzz60 (Oct. 21, 2014) Mother Nature is pulling a trick on the kids of Arviat, Canada. As Mara Montalbano (@maramontalbano) tells us, the effects of global warming caused the town to ban trick-or-treating this Halloween. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Traditional Farming Methods Gaining Ground in Mali

Traditional Farming Methods Gaining Ground in Mali

AFP (Oct. 20, 2014) He is leading a one man agricultural revolution in Mali - Oumar Diatabe uses traditional farming methods to get the most out of his land and is teaching others across the country how to do the same. Duration: 01:44 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins