This module constructs differential equations models of the daily temperature cycle on atmosphere-free planets and on planets that have atmospheres. The models give some insight into the behavior, observed in recent decades, that nighttime lows have been increasing faster than daytime highs over the Earth's land surfaces.
Table of Contents:
TEMPERATURE, ENERGY, AND POWER
RADIATION, FLUX, AND THE SOLAR CONSTANT
BLACKBODIES AND EFFECTIVE TEMPERATURE
TEMPERATURES ON AN AIRLESS PLANET
How Much Will the Temperature Rise?
How Long Until the Surface Reaches Equilibrium?
How Large Is the Dinurnal Temperature Range?
A MATHEMATICAL INTERLUDE
Solution of the Homogeneous Equation
Solution of the Inhomogeneous Equation
TEMPERATURES ON AN AIRLESS PLANET, CONTINUED
The Diurnal Temperature Range
EQUILIBRIUM TEMPERATUES ON A PLANET WITH AN ATMOSPHERE
DAILY TEMPERATURE CYCLE OF A PLANET WITH ATMOSPHERE
APPENDIX I. KIRCHOFF'S LAW
APPENDIX II. PHYSICAL CONSTANTS AND CONVERSIONS
APPENDIX III. GLOSSARY
ANSWERS AND SOLUTIONS TO SELECTED EXERCISES
ABOUT THE AUTHOR