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The Runaway Greenhouse: A History of Water on Venus

Ingersoll, Andrew P. (1969) The Runaway Greenhouse: A History of Water on Venus. Journal of the Atmospheric Sciences, 26 (6). pp. 1191-1198. ISSN 0022-4928. doi:10.1175/1520-0469(1969)026<1191:TRGAHO>2.0.CO;2.

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Radiative-convective equilibrium models of planetary atmospheres are discussed for the case when the infrared opacity is due to a vapor in equilibrium with its liquid or solid phase. For a grey gas, or for a gas which absorbs at all infrared wavelengths, equilibrium is impossible when the solar constant exceeds a critical value. Equilibrium therefore requires that the condensed phase evaporates into the atmosphere. Moist adiabatic and pseudoadiabatic atmospheres in which the condensing vapor is a major atmospheric constituent are considered. This situation would apply if the solar constant were supercritical with respect to an abundant substance such as water. It is shown that the condensing gas would be a major constituent at all levels in such an atmosphere. Photodissociation of water in the primordial Venus atmosphere is discussed in this context.

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Ingersoll, Andrew P.0000-0002-2035-9198
Additional Information:© American Meteorological Society 1969. (Manuscript received June 12, 1969) The original version of this paper was presented at the 49th Annual Meeting of the American Geophysical Union (Ingersoll, 1968). Since then it has been rewritten several times. Prof. Richard Goody recognized the essential simplicity of the concept described, before it had been described simply, and offered advice and encouragement when it was sorely needed. Financial support was provided by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration under Grant NGL 05-002-003. Contribution No. 1549 of the Division of Geological Sciences, California Institute of Technology.
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Caltech Division of Geological and Planetary Sciences1549
Issue or Number:6
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Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:3987
Deposited By: Archive Administrator
Deposited On:21 Jul 2006
Last Modified:08 Nov 2021 20:13

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