Sunday, September 25, 2016

Nikolov and Zeller Again

The tallbloke site has another post on Nikolov and Zeller's "Unified Climate Theory", about a Washington Post interview with Nikolov. Their latest paper was withdrawn (by "common agreement with the authors and editors") because they used pseudonyms to get past the consensus guardians that have long made a mockery of peer review (I gave up on peer review years ago--the defense of scientific dogma is just too strong, and universal). My response (and I have made the following criticisms many times before):

“Common agreement with the authors and editors” is a whitewash. If the paper passed on “scientific merit”, then the editor should have politely explained that they needed to publish the paper with the authors’ real names, and THAT should have been done “by common agreement with the authors and editors”.

Nikolov and Zeller still don’t get it, though:

“It is simply the hydrostatic condition”,

and that has been known for well over a century, in the Standard Atmosphere model, which my 2010 Venus/Earth temperature-vs-pressure comparison precisely confirmed.

And “The results from our empirical data analysis suggest that the thermal effect of the atmosphere is analogous to a compression heating” merely confuses the transient (and local) effect of compression with the constant (and global) effect of the hydrostatic condition (most simply described as “the pressure at any level in the atmosphere is just the weight of the atmosphere above that level”). The Standard Atmosphere, as everyone should know by now (I have been pointing it out for 6 years now), is based upon the hydrostatic condition.

And the figure really does no more than agree with what my Venus/Earth comparison showed more fully and clearly, that those two planets have essentially the same temperature-vs-pressure profile, over the full range of Earth tropospheric pressures, when only their different distances from the Sun are taken into account. Mars, Moon, and Triton are useless, as the curve is vertical–hence, the “thermal enhancement” is completely indeterminate–for very low surface pressure. I have also pointed out, many times, that the surface temperature of Titan is too low, by about 7K, when compared to Earth in the same way I compared Earth and Venus, and I have given the most likely reason for that (an observed haze in Titan’s atmosphere), while Nikolov and Zeller’s theory cannot even address it (I am surprised they even show Titan as a point off the curve, not on it, since previously they have reported that their theoretical relationship–the curve–predicts precisely the surface temperature of Titan). And Venus’s planet-wide, thick cloud cover does not affect its T-P profile, outside of the clouds themselves, so continually bringing in clouds to explain global temperature variations is also wrong. Sorry, but my Venus/Earth comparison is definitive, and everyone (consensus believer or skeptical critic) will have to admit that in the end.

My Venus/Earth analysis is earlier, better, and more simply and clearly explained, by the hydrostatic condition alone (without any “compressional heating”, which is irrelevant, incompetent and immaterial). The Standard Atmosphere, over a century old, contains that, so their “new understanding” is not new; it has just been ignored, for 2 generations now, by incompetent scientists and unethical politicians bent on world dominion.


  1. If you had not made the point about the 'consensus gatekeepers' I would have wondered if you had not missed the point as well. For an untrained person like myself, the failure of peer review is illustrated best in a comment on medical science :

    1. Good Evening, opit,

      I made a number of points, three of which were, in order: I made Nikolov's point first, with the "consensus guardians" phrase, then I made the point that the "common agreement of authors and editors" was false at its heart, then I criticized the "unified climate theory", contrasting it with my Venus/Earth comparison, as I have done before. These points are independent of one another, and all need to be made, again and again, as required or indicated as appropriate by the situation being addressed. They are all appropriate, all "on topic", in the case under consideration here.

  2. Dear Mr Huffman,

    Something has been bugging me about your temperature comparison. Wouldn't measurements for Venus and Earth have to be taken in equivalent geographic locations? Comparing the temperature profile of Venus to that of Earth above the North Pole and Earth above the equator would give different results. Was the data for Venus and Earth normalised in some way?

  3. Good Evening, HungryDragon,

    First, one should keep in mind that my Venus/Earth comparison was meant to be simple, even simple-minded, above all. I merely did an internet search on Venus temperature and pressure profiles, and found the data I cited in the original 2010 post; I compared that with the Earth temperature vs. pressure profile, standardized in the century-old Standard Atmosphere model, with the quite precise agreement you can see in the original post.

    The Standard Atmosphere is described as a "mid-latitudinal" model, in other words a global mean model.

    A correspondent emailed me information in 2014 on Venus data taken years earlier (1979 to 1981) than the 1991 data I used. He sent me a copy of a 1982 paper (Kliore and Patel, in "Icarus" V. 52, 320-334, 1982), which showed Venus profiles at varying latitudes, and one, in 1979 and at 67.2N, was the same as the 1991 profile (also 67N) I used (so it also agrees precisely with the Earth Standard Atmosphere tropospheric profile).

    The precise agreement between these Venus data and the Standard Atmosphere Earth, when only the differing solar distance is taken into account (when the other huge differences in these two atmospheres would, in consensus thought, predict otherwise), ensures that the fundamental global temperature stability of both planets' atmospheres (due simply to the hydrostatic condition, of the Standard Atmosphere model and thus of Venus's atmosphere as well) has been confirmed, and that there is no mere "coincidence" involved in the agreement in such detailed data, encompassing the entire Earth tropospheric range of pressures). It means the Venus data I originally found on the internet indeed represents the true mid-latitudinal or global mean profile for Venus, just as the Standard Atmosphere is the true global mean profile for Earth's atmosphere. You simply cannot get such precise and detailed agreement, from two such different planet-plus-atmosphere systems, otherwise.

    1. I downloaded the 1976 Standard Atmosphere from a wikipedia link. Unfortunately it isn't searchable but from very briefly skip reading bits of it they seem to use 45N several times. If that is the case then adding in axial tilt woul make the Venus and Earth data 'like for like', more or less.
      I didn't doubt your original conclusion but wondered how the result could be so precise. It makes more sense now so thank you for your response.

  4. HungryDragon,

    At the risk of unsettling your mind again: I would not agree that one must compare Venus and Earth profiles at the same latitude (whether 45N or 67N) in order to be assured that the quite precise agreement between the two is due to the physical truth, that the hydrostatic condition is the governor of the global mean temperature, the predominant condition over all other processes in the two atmospheres.

    "Mid-latitudinal" does not necessarily mean 45N; physically, it would be appropriate for a fairly wide range of latitudes--on the Earth, in many contexts, it refers to the range of latitudes between the tropics and the polar regions, between 23.5 and 66.5 degrees latitude, with 45N just the middle of that range in the northern hemisphere. I don't even know how they defined the Venus latitudes in past studies; Venus is "upside down" compared to Earth, that is it spins in the opposite sense that Earth does, so I don't even know what modern scientists regard as the "north pole" there. And frankly, I don't care; so long as the temperature-pressure profile of Venus at ANY latitude agrees with that of the "mid-latitudinal" Earth troposphere, as precisely as it does, that is enough to guarantee that the hydrostatic condition rules in both atmospheres, and that only the incident solar intensity affects the global mean temperature (so the vertical temperature structure of both atmospheres, over the range of Earth tropspheric pressures, is maintained by direct absorption of incident solar radiation, not by first warming of the planetary surface, as today's miseducated "experts" all believe).

    You can download this pdf paper on the Standard Atmosphere, to study it at your leisure, if you like. It mentions "mid-latitude" in the first paragraph.

    1. I think I got it into my head that two sets of raw temperature measurements were being compared as if the Standard Atmosphere was simply a set of reference data and the Venus profile was taken directly from one of the space probes. This made the result seem too good.


      I accept the point you made having thought about it some more. However the temperature profiles were compiled the ratio would have to be very different from the expected 1.176 to conclude that the determining factors are anything other than the solar input and the hydrostatic condition.

    2. HungryDragon,

      Yes, you've got it. To be clear, though, on a point of grammar: There needs to be a comma after the word "compiled" in your comment just above. I, for example, first mistook your "However" to mean "but", rather than the correct meaning, "No matter how"....