The Climate System

  • William W. Hay


Insolation is the incoming energy from the Sun. It is at shorter wavelengths of ultraviolet, the visible spectrum, and the near infrared. Albedo is the reflection of incoming energy back into space by the planet. To maintain a given temperature, the Earth radiates energy back into space at invisible infrared wavelengths. In doing so, it must redistribute the energy. But the weather is inherently chaotic. The major components of Earth’s climate system are air, earth, ice, and water: the atmosphere, hydrosphere, cryosphere, and land. Climatic regions are commonly classified by their vegetation, which integrates the climate signal over time. Some uncertainties in the components of the climate scheme remain.


Mixed Layer Climate System Black Body Diurnal Temperature Range Average Surface Temperature 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of Colorado at BoulderEstes ParkUSA

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