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Wikipedia on Earth's internal heat

 
 
Reply Sun 26 Jan, 2020 02:53 pm
Wikipedia's entry on Earth's internal heat mentions sunlight, but only in terms of direct heating of the ground by light that is not reflected. No mention is made of the effects of convection on atmospheric temperatures and the role those play in biochemical processes that convert solar energy into various forms, beginning with glucose and ending with large macromolecular fossil fuels found underground.

From Wikipedia:
Quote:
Earth's internal heat powers most geological processes[3] and drives plate tectonics.[2] Despite its geological significance, this heat energy coming from Earth's interior is actually only 0.03% of Earth's total energy budget at the surface, which is dominated by 173,000 TW of incoming solar radiation.[4] The insolation that eventually, after reflection, reaches the surface penetrates only several tens of centimeters on the daily cycle and only several tens of meters on the annual cycle. This renders solar radiation minimally relevant for internal processes.[5]

Considering that Wikipedia typically provides a good overview of a subject, and considering that geologists know that fossil fuels are formed as a result of biological sediments building up and condensing underground; why would Wikipedia casually dismiss the contribution of solar energy to internal processes as 'minimally relevant' without further explanation?

How much do geologists really know about the role fossilized biological sediments/energy plays in geology? First, how do they calculate the amount of energy stored as fossil fuel throughout the globe? Second, how many theories exist for what that fossilized energy does underground besides waiting for humans to bring it to the surface to power industrial machines?

If Wikipedia doesn't even mention the biosphere in regard to Earth's internal heat mechanisms, then is there maybe some other discourse that addresses this topic? Is there such a thing as "fossil fuel studies" for example, where biological processes that form fossil fuels are studied along with the geological processes that go on with them underground?

Considering how significant a topic this is politically and in the daily news, it is surprising that there isn't more academic work publicly available for journalists and other lay people to gain deeper understanding of the fundamental scientific issues that underlie the politics of CO2 distribution between atmosphere and land/water.

If you have information about this and/or thoughts of your own to post on this topic, please feel free to post in this thread.
 
Sturgis
 
  2  
Reply Sun 26 Jan, 2020 03:04 pm
@livinglava,
Wikipedia is not the best source for accuracy.
livinglava
 
  1  
Reply Sun 26 Jan, 2020 03:12 pm
@Sturgis,
Sturgis wrote:

Wikipedia is not the best source for accuracy.

I guess it depends on who is active in maintaining a given topic/entry, but generally I find that people put a lot of effort into representing their topics of interest/study, and they work hard to stop edits that don't pass critical scrutiny.
Sturgis
 
  1  
Reply Sun 26 Jan, 2020 03:17 pm
@livinglava,
I at times do a quick check on Wikipedia, followed by looking for other sources so as to verify or discount.
livinglava
 
  -1  
Reply Sun 26 Jan, 2020 03:20 pm
@Sturgis,
Sturgis wrote:

I at times do a quick check on Wikipedia, followed by looking for other sources so as to verify or discount.

I think it's pretty unlikely that you could find a valid source to discount something on wiki that hasn't already been blocked by the edit police there.

If there's one thing academia is good at producing lots of, it is disciplinary minions who adhere to and guard received knowledge like it's Holy Scripture.

Now, don't take that last sentence as implying it's bad to defend good scholarship against subversion, but I just note it because that is who is honing and policing the wiki entries.
0 Replies
 
maxdancona
 
  2  
Reply Sun 26 Jan, 2020 03:41 pm
@livinglava,
What this Thread is about

Livinlava, who has not claimed any formal education on anything, is arguing withFarmerman who an educated geologist with years of professional experience. Livinglava lost the argument soundly (although it is not clear if he understands that he lost the argument). There is no shame in admitting that someone with years of education and experience knows more than you. I wish Livinglava would just do this.

This thread is an appeal to argument by google, where someone who doesn't understand science types in google searches to find links that seem to support his basic misunderstanding.

Wikipedia is fine if you want a brief overview of science.... but if you are talking with an actual, educated expert in the field, you should listen to them.

livinglava wrote:
How much do geologists really know about the role fossilized biological sediments/energy plays in geology?


A lot more than you do. The way to learn about a subject is taking the time to study it in a University, followed by years using this knowledge in a lab or in the field. Geologists have done exactly that.... you should listen to them rather than googling things you don't understand on wikipedia.
livinglava
 
  1  
Reply Sun 26 Jan, 2020 04:00 pm
@maxdancona,
maxdancona wrote:

Wikipedia is fine if you want a brief overview of science.... but if you are talking with an actual, educated expert in the field, you should listen to them.

How would you know how 'actual,' 'educated,' or 'expert' someone is on the internet? They could be faking.

You have to read everything with an open but critical mind, no matter who you may think it's coming from.


Quote:
livinglava wrote:
How much do geologists really know about the role fossilized biological sediments/energy plays in geology?


A lot more than you do. The way to learn about a subject is taking the time to study it in a University, followed by years using this knowledge in a lab or in the field. Geologists have done exactly that.... you should listen to them rather than googling things you don't understand on wikipedia.

Given your dismissal of me, it's irrelevant to say that geologists know "a lot more than you do."

This thread is not to argue about whose authority counts. It is to discuss the questions in the OP. If you have authority/knowledge to discuss those issues, fine do so. But if you just want to argue over who has authority/knowledge and who doesn't, do it in a different thread.

maxdancona
 
  2  
Reply Sun 26 Jan, 2020 04:31 pm
@livinglava,
Quote:
How would you know how 'actual,' 'educated,' or 'expert' someone is on the internet? They could be faking.

You have to read everything with an open but critical mind, no matter who you may think it's coming from.


Well... scientific literacy involves understanding who the scientific experts are. I compare what someone on the internet is saying with what the scientific consensus is. Usually it is not that difficult to figure out. I have a science education which gives me a bit of an advantage, but you should be able to do the same.

"Open" and "Critical" are opposites. If someone says the Earth is flat, do you accept this because you have an "open mind" or do you reject it because you have a "critical mind".

I have a scientific mind. I apply the current scientific consensus to what I read. It is not science to just choose what you believe or disbelieve based on what sounds right to you.


livinglava
 
  0  
Reply Sun 26 Jan, 2020 05:05 pm
@maxdancona,
maxdancona wrote:

Quote:
How would you know how 'actual,' 'educated,' or 'expert' someone is on the internet? They could be faking.

You have to read everything with an open but critical mind, no matter who you may think it's coming from.


Well... scientific literacy involves understanding who the scientific experts are. I compare what someone on the internet is saying with what the scientific consensus is. Usually it is not that difficult to figure out. I have a science education which gives me a bit of an advantage, but you should be able to do the same.

Using scientific consensus or consulting experts to review science is basically like cheating on homework by looking up the answer in the back of the book before trying it for yourself. You can get the right answer that way, but you don't learn to think critically and assess information independently of what some other authority has to say about it.

Quote:
"Open" and "Critical" are opposites. If someone says the Earth is flat, do you accept this because you have an "open mind" or do you reject it because you have a "critical mind".

Open-critical means that you engage in an open thought process and/or discussion that isn't geared toward accepting or rejecting anything based on unreasoned grounds like what someone else thinks about it. If the only reason you have to accept or reject something is that someone you respect supports or rejects it, you haven't engaged in critical thinking to assess it for yourself.

Quote:
I have a scientific mind. I apply the current scientific consensus to what I read. It is not science to just choose what you believe or disbelieve based on what sounds right to you.

What you are saying here is like a bad oxymoronic joke. "Applying consensus" is the opposite of applying critical thinking to assess science. If you read the book, Neutrino, for example, by Frank Close; you have to assume that all the information he is reporting is correct, but then you have to think critically about whether Fermi's theory of a small invisibly-neutral particle to explain the small mass-different between neutron and proton makes sense. Then you have to review how the experiments worked, which identified certain kinds of blue light occurring in a pool of chlorine as indicating that a chlorine neutron decayed into a proton, etc.

Once you think critically about what you have understood, you may not be able to think of any other explanation that would better fit the data you've reviewed, so you accept the current theory tentatively; but somewhere in the back of your mind you should always be open to the possibility that some other explanation will emerge in the future to better explain the phenomenon and/or clarify the current theory further.

That explanation could come from your own mind or some other mind(s) but that part doesn't matter, just like it doesn't matter which calculator, abacus, or pen and paper you use to calculate a given math problem, as long as the answer comes out right.
maxdancona
 
  2  
Reply Sun 26 Jan, 2020 05:16 pm
@livinglava,
Quote:
If you read the book, Neutrino, for example, by Frank Close; you have to assume that all the information he is reporting is correct, but then you have to think critically about whether Fermi's theory of a small invisibly-neutral particle to explain the small mass-different between neutron and proton makes sense. Then you have to review how the experiments worked, which identified certain kinds of blue light occurring in a pool of chlorine as indicating that a chlorine neutron decayed into a proton, etc.

Once you think critically about what you have understood, you may not be able to think of any other explanation that would better fit the data you've reviewed, so you accept the current theory tentatively; but somewhere in the back of your mind you should always be open to the possibility that some other explanation will emerge in the future to better explain the phenomenon and/or clarify the current theory further.


You don't have the knowledge or skill required to think critically about Frank Close's work. Actually, neither do I. He knows far more about neutrinos than you or I. I could read his papers, I probably have more access to the math than he does. But even I need to take his word for it unless I choose to go back to school and get the specific knowledge in the fields of the Particle Physics.

I have done experiments in Physics. I have read papers. I have written papers. If you can't do the math, you can't understand the experiment. It is not even a question.

It would be foolish for you to question his work, when you don't even have the knowledge to properly understand it.

I would like to be the next starting Quarterback for the Patriots... what do you think?

livinglava
 
  0  
Reply Sun 26 Jan, 2020 05:51 pm
@maxdancona,
maxdancona wrote:

You don't have the knowledge or skill required to think critically about Frank Close's work. Actually, neither do I. He knows far more about neutrinos than you or I. I could read his papers, I probably have more access to the math than he does. But even I need to take his word for it unless I choose to go back to school and get the specific knowledge in the fields of the Particle Physics.

You have to accept that the masses of neutrons and protons are measured accurately and that the discrepancy between them can be explained by a small, neutral particle. Fermi wasn't doing anything besides positing the idea that there could be such a thing as a small neutral particle to explain that discrepancy, but it just so happens that experimentalists later proved him right by experiment/observation.

Read the book and see for yourself what it says. It says they built what basically amounts to a large chlorine swimming pool deep underground where it wouldn't be subject to interference from above-ground noise. Then they looked for blue flashes of light that indicated the neutrinos were colliding with neutrons in the chlorine nuclei causing them to decay into argon. Indeed, you have to accept the math that equates the blue flash with the amount of energy predicted to emit from the collision. Nevertheless, the basic math and physics of particle collision is understandable to someone with basic high school science, provided they care enough to really think seriously about what they learned in class.

Quote:
I have done experiments in Physics. I have read papers. I have written papers. If you can't do the math, you can't understand the experiment. It is not even a question.

You are just obsessed with putting yourself above other people and insisting they can't understand anything without doing everything you had to do to get your degree. You're just biased by your own status-attainment efforts.

Quote:
It would be foolish for you to question his work, when you don't even have the knowledge to properly understand it.

I would like to be the next starting Quarterback for the Patriots... what do you think?

No, that would be different.

Questioning can and should be done. Regarding neutrinos, you could just question whether something else could explain the blue flashes attributed to chlorine-argon decay. Or you could question whether the chlorine wouldn't just spontaneously decay to argon without the neutrinos hitting them. Probably such questions can be resolved by information in the book about the experiments, i.e. that they could somehow predict the natural probability of chlorine-argon decay in the absence of neutrino collision, etc.

Anyway, the point is that it is not impossible to think actively and critically about things you read, whether they are news stories or scientific explanations. The important thing is to be intellectually honest and not get too attached to the point you avoid or deny relevant information/critique.

The only critique you could give me that I wouldn't give consideration to is that I as a whole are wrong, or an idiot, etc. because that wouldn't be something fixable. If you tell me I need to read up on some aspect of quantum mechanics to better understand the chlorine-argon decay process, I could do that and patch the gap in my knowledge; but if you tell me I can't fix stupid, that would just discourage me from doing further research and analysis and that would be a waste of my time/energy.

maxdancona
 
  3  
Reply Sun 26 Jan, 2020 06:16 pm
@livinglava,
Quote:
Nevertheless, the basic math and physics of particle collision is understandable to someone with basic high school science, provided they care enough to really think seriously about what they learned in class.


I don't know why you believe this is anywhere close to true. I actually have spent the time learning this math... I can tell you that it isn't true.
maxdancona
 
  2  
Reply Sun 26 Jan, 2020 06:22 pm
@livinglava,
For you to have any meaningful understanding of Quantum Physics, you need to understand at least differential equations.

I believe that Frank Close would tell you the same. Frank Close is an expert who has spent a life time studying particle Physics. He has an understanding of particle Physics that it would take me years to even grasp.

I might ask him questions... with the goal of satisfying my own curiosity. But I would ask as a student. If I really wanted to understand it, I would take more classes and really do the work... hopefully under a great mentor.

The idea that I would have a critique of his work that would be meaningful to him (i.e. present a serious challenge to his expertise) is about as likely as me throwing the winning touchdown for the Patriots next Superbowl.... it is statistically possible, but heck... I can't even run a 5 minute mile at this point.
maxdancona
 
  2  
Reply Sun 26 Jan, 2020 06:24 pm
@maxdancona,
When these Physicists write books, they are greatly dumbed down. They aren't considered scientific. He isn't really describing his work. It is great for him to write these books, they aren't even as helpful as you might hope.

Science is done in published papers. Try reading those and see if you can't understand.
0 Replies
 
oralloy
 
  0  
Reply Sun 26 Jan, 2020 07:01 pm
livinglava wrote:
Wikipedia's entry on Earth's internal heat mentions sunlight, but only in terms of direct heating of the ground by light that is not reflected. No mention is made of the effects of convection on atmospheric temperatures and the role those play in biochemical processes that convert solar energy into various forms, beginning with glucose and ending with large macromolecular fossil fuels found underground.

Why would any mention of that be made in an article about Earth's internal heat? What does any of that have to do with Earth's internal heat?
oralloy
 
  0  
Reply Sun 26 Jan, 2020 07:04 pm
@maxdancona,
maxdancona wrote:
if you are talking with an actual, educated expert in the field, you should listen to them.

Unless they are clearly wrong. Then you should question them.
0 Replies
 
livinglava
 
  1  
Reply Mon 27 Jan, 2020 04:52 pm
@maxdancona,
maxdancona wrote:

Quote:
Nevertheless, the basic math and physics of particle collision is understandable to someone with basic high school science, provided they care enough to really think seriously about what they learned in class.


I don't know why you believe this is anywhere close to true. I actually have spent the time learning this math... I can tell you that it isn't true.

Feynman diagrams are not that complicated. They are basically like chemical equations with more than a single dimension. The energy and mass quantities have to add up to satisfy energy/matter conservation. Compton scattering allows collisions to absorb/emit 'remainder energy' when the other inputs and outputs don't exactly add up.

There may be more complex rules governing which combinations are possible, but the basic math is just addition, the same as stoichiometry.
0 Replies
 
livinglava
 
  1  
Reply Mon 27 Jan, 2020 05:02 pm
@maxdancona,
maxdancona wrote:

For you to have any meaningful understanding of Quantum Physics, you need to understand at least differential equations.

I'm sorry but you are just trying to discourage math-challenged people from trying to understand quantum physics. There are lots of videos and books explaining various aspect of quantum mechanics in ways that are comprehensible to people without strong math skills. Good physicists are able to write such books and make such videos because they can translate abstract math into intuitively-graspable graphics, analogies, etc.

Quote:
I believe that Frank Close would tell you the same. Frank Close is an expert who has spent a life time studying particle Physics. He has an understanding of particle Physics that it would take me years to even grasp.

All you care about is status hierarchy. It's sad when science people let their egos and social interests get in the way of honoring the spirit of science.

Quote:
I might ask him questions... with the goal of satisfying my own curiosity. But I would ask as a student. If I really wanted to understand it, I would take more classes and really do the work... hopefully under a great mentor.

Just read the book.

Quote:
The idea that I would have a critique of his work that would be meaningful to him (i.e. present a serious challenge to his expertise) is about as likely as me throwing the winning touchdown for the Patriots next Superbowl.... it is statistically possible, but heck... I can't even run a 5 minute mile at this point.

The way you think is just so offensively negative toward critical thinking. Instead of thinking about how unlikely it is for you to have a valid critical thought, you should be thinking of relevant questions you would ask if you were interviewing him for a science publication or talk show. E.g. you could ask what the future of neutrino research is likely to bring, what issues still need to be solved and which does he expect to emerge. You could ask what kinds of astronomical phenomena could be observed as having empirically-visible/measurable neutrino effects.

Even before you read the book, you could be formulating questions that you hope the book will answer, such as why the neutrino is detected in certain nuclear (decay) reactions more so than others. I don't think that question is actually answered in the book, but there is certainly good explanation of why the detectors are built the way they are and why different detectors were built to compensate for weaknesses in previous 'models.'

I just don't think you're understanding the importance of critical thinking because you are thinking of it in terms of some conflict with authority, which it isn't. It is a practice of active thinking that helps you study information in more depth and gain a level of understanding that you can put into practice in your own thought processes instead of just memorizing and recalling facts you learned.

0 Replies
 
livinglava
 
  1  
Reply Mon 27 Jan, 2020 05:09 pm
@oralloy,
oralloy wrote:

Why would any mention of that be made in an article about Earth's internal heat? What does any of that have to do with Earth's internal heat?

Because solar heating is mentioned:
Quote:

Earth's interior is actually only 0.03% of Earth's total energy budget at the surface, which is dominated by 173,000 TW of incoming solar radiation.[4] The insolation that eventually, after reflection, reaches the surface penetrates only several tens of centimeters on the daily cycle and only several tens of meters on the annual cycle. This renders solar radiation minimally relevant for internal processes.[5]

Why mention insolation that only penetrates centimeters, when you should take into consideration what the "173,000 TW of incoming solar radiation" does as a whole?

Earth heats up, convection currents rise, water evaporates, plants grow, animals eat, organisms drop droppings, sediments build up and condense over time, fossil fuels form, the ocean floor feeds into subduction zones . . . and then the mystery begins: i.e. what happens to the fossil fuels once they are subducted and mix with other energy/heat already present?

What's more, what happens to the other fossil fuels that don't get subducted?

Insolation doesn't explain the whole process that leads to fossil fuel formation, nor does it explain how the Earth uses fossil fuels besides giving them to humans for industry and pumping CO2 into the atmosphere.
oralloy
 
  1  
Reply Mon 27 Jan, 2020 05:27 pm
@livinglava,
livinglava wrote:
Why mention insolation that only penetrates centimeters, when you should take into consideration what the "173,000 TW of incoming solar radiation" does as a whole?

Because the rest of it has nothing to do with Earth's internal heat.
 

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