Okay, let me correct this in the very first sentence before we go any further. I know this isn’t an actual theory. This is a science website so let’s get the terminology correct from the outset. We all know that, technically, an actual theory only comes after the repeated rigorous testing of certain hypotheses, so I’ll call this My Global Warming Thinking, for now.
My thinking on this struck me like a bolt of lightning a few years ago, and it struck me as something that seemed to be so obvious that I wondered why nobody else had thought about it. Because of that, I wondered if it was actually too obvious and therefore completely wrong. But the more I think about it, and the more research that I conduct, there does seem to be a lot of evidence as well as common sense behind my thinking.
We are told over and over again, to the point of hysteria on behalf of a media desperate to sell a headline by shock and awe or whatever tactic they can use, that the world is again, this week, on a course to oblivion as global temperatures rocket to a new high. They scream at us that the world is far hotter than it should be, temperatures are rising at a faster rate than expected or predicted and that it’s, surely, it’s only a matter of days before we all boil away to nothing. It’s hardly surprising that there are so many sceptics when these predictions never come true, are ever more grandiose, and the planet makes another journey around the Sun and life goes on as it did the previous year, to much the same extent.
As scientists, we are bound by facts and evidence, and the highest standard of them all; truth. It is because of this truth that many scientists now distance themselves from organisations such as the IPCC when the stories told to the public simply don’t match the evidence. That’s not to say that I deny that average global temperatures are rising, I’ll get to that in a minute. When we look at the facts, we find that they just don’t add up to the stories we are being told. We also find that we are given excuses as to why we need to be taxed more and more, both directly and indirectly, to fix the problem. We are told not to burn fossil fuels when there is very little evidence, virtually none, that proves that the burning of fossil fuels adds that the rise of global temperatures. Ice core samples from the time of the industrial age prove that these emission levels had no relevance to global temperatures when ALL we burned was fossil fuel. We also know that the sun goes through warming and cooling periods and, as a knock-on effect, so does the earth. We only have to look at our planet’s history to see that we have had a number of major and minor ice ages throughout our existence to at least make many of us think that maybe we are just seeing another warming period. Even so, many of us are told that it is our own personal faults and charged a carbon tax as an apparent ‘proof’.
But this isn’t my thinking. So far, all I’ve told you about are other people’s thinkings. Furthermore, these are not just thinkings, these are facts, evidence and truths that we can all research and find the answers to. My thinking actually shows an irony related to the very media that I was speaking of. It also comes from a very basic scientific principle that we as teachers can prove in every classroom. My thinking is this, and it comes from a documentary that I saw where the ‘evidence’ presented didn’t match my common sense. In the documentary, it was stated that these global temperature rises occur mostly around the equator and tropical regions. This in itself raised an alarm bell because I thought that we were also being told that the sheer masses of people in concentrated areas, the technology they use, the vehicles they drive, etc. were the major causes of natural global warming. How then, when these same masses of people with their technology and vehicles who are generally positioned further north of the equator (Europe, Middle East, Russia, USA, Canada, etc.) could the rise in temperature be recorded around the equatorial region? Okay, we know that Hadley Cells rise and fall and move the atmosphere, and any heat, in a general direction towards the Equator from both the north and south poles, maybe this heat was being moved towards the equatorial region. Possible, but not necessarily plausible enough. What about the fact that the Earth spins? As it spins it bulges out around the equatorial region into an almost oblique spheroid. Perhaps these emissions in warmer areas of the atmosphere are also being spun out, and are collecting around the equatorial region. Again possible, but not entirely plausible.
And then something happened. The programme ended. Why is that important? Because it was at this point that I got up and make some dinner. And I did something that I do almost every day. I steamed some vegetables in the microwave to go with my dinner, and the bolt of lightning struck. Here, sitting in front of me was a piece of technology that works by emitting a beam of energy that sits in the microwave frequency range of the radio spectrum and heats my food by exciting the water molecules in it. My microwave is an average size, rated at 1000 W and heats my bowl of vegetables in a couple of minutes. I don’t add water to my bowl of vegetables, I microwave them from frozen, so the water already contained within them, and the ice that collects on them from the freezer, is enough water for the microwave to work as it heats my veg. If I were to have put my vegetables in a bowl of water and then into the microwave, they would still have heated up but would have taken a significantly longer time. This time difference is significant because the more water there is within the microwave, the longer the microwave takes the heat the water up. The energy from the microwave is dissipated more within the water; there are more molecules to excite, so, therefore, takes longer to heat up.
Even the simplest experiments in a classroom will show that solids and liquids and gases will heat up at different rates. We know that the molecules in solids are far closer than that of a liquid, and the molecules in a liquid are far closer to each other than in a gas. Because of this, the molecules are either more likely to knock into each other and transfer their energy, or less likely depending on whether it is the solid, liquid or gas, and the different rates can be measured.
So, you might be able to see where I’m trying to go with this. Our whole atmosphere contains water vapour. It is, essentially, a gas. The density of this gas changes at different altitudes. It is denser towards the surface of the Earth and less dense the further away from the Earth we go. So, if we surround the Earth with microwave ovens, take off the oven doors, bypass the safety features, and let the microwave’s escape the oven and travel to Earth, could the water molecules in the atmosphere be excited enough to warm the temperature of the planet? I hypothesise that, yes they can very easily heat up our atmosphere. But can we test it? Again, I would suggest yes. Not only would I suggest it, but I’d also say we’ve been testing it since the 1960s.
And here’s where we come to the irony I was speaking. We watch our TVs and what we are being told is that our atmosphere is warming up, but suppose it is the very media companies, by their own method of communication, who are actually the ones contributing to our atmospheric warming. Surrounding our Earth, at various altitudes, are thousands upon thousands of, essentially, microwave ovens in the form of satellites. The vast majority of these are in geosynchronous or geostationary orbits. All communicate back to Earth using microwave frequencies in the radio spectrum. The majority of the satellites are all positioned along the ecliptic plane (above the equator) or within a few degrees north and south of the equator. That would also account for why this equatorial region is being heated at a faster rate than other regions; this is where the majority of satellites are concentrated. Further to this ecliptic concentration, it the fact that there are further concentrations above the higher populated areas. “If that’s where the people are, that’s where we need to be aiming the beams!”
Suppose the satellites, by the use of microwave frequencies, are actually warming up our atmosphere by exciting the water molecules within it just as microwaves at home excite the water molecules within the food inside the oven. Suppose that the very companies that are telling us that this warming of the atmosphere is happening are the same companies causing the warming that they speak of. And it’s not just TV companies. There are satellites in orbit for military use, observation news, GPS so that we can find a way around the planet as well as many other uses. But the main reason for the thousands of satellites that surround the Earth is, quite frankly, communication of one form or another. Imagine if this was true. Imagine, if to save our planet from warming up, we would have to cease using this form of technological communication. We rely on satellites for our TV, for a lot of our telephone calls, for weather forecasts and predictions and many many other reasons. In fact, I doubt whether we can even fight wars any more if it weren’t for the use of satellite technology. Imagine if all that had to grind to a screeching halt because it was finally realised what effect it was all having on our environment.
And this is actually both possible and plausible. If you look at the trend charts that we are shown on the rise in global temperatures from the 1960s until today and also compare this to the number of satellites that went into orbit from the 1960s until today, you will see that both show exponential growth. Consistently, from one decade to the next, we launch more and more satellites with increasing capabilities and of greater and greater power. Many of the satellites in orbit today are many, many, times more powerful than your microwave at home; 1oos of watts per satellite are common, even a dozen-thousand watts per satellite for the powerful high-end ones. They need to carry more equipment, communicate to a wider area, and as a result send more power back through the atmosphere, possibly exciting water molecules and warming up the atmosphere, as they travel back to Earth. This isn’t just a one-way path either, as the various ground stations around the Earth communicate to the satellites by microwave frequencies going up through the atmosphere into space as well. The atmosphere is being heated twice. Once during an uplink path from the ground station to the satellites, although this is a more direct path, and then the satellite throws a much wider beam across an area of the Earth when the downlink beam leaves the satellite, and the microwaves pass back down through the atmosphere.
Basic mathematical models I have made show that this concept is entirely plausible and has already shown a correlation between the number of satellites launched in the years from the 1960s to today compared with the rising atmospheric temperatures. Obviously, this works on a much weaker scale than heating the vegetables in your microwave oven home, due the larger areas involved, but the effects are significant nonetheless. This would also show why there is a lag in time between the total power output from all satellites in space, to the apparent warming of atmospheric temperatures as the microwaves and the satellites have a lot more water in the atmosphere to heat up.
Here’s a quick experiment that we can conduct in our classrooms. Take a microwave oven, don’t put anything in it, but set it going on full power for two minutes. When it’s finished, put your hand in there to feel if it’s warm inside. Go again for another two minutes, then another two. How can it be warm inside when the microwave is empty? Well, you’re heating the air (more specifically, the water molecules inside the air). This air in the microwave is a sample of the atmosphere. If you can heat this air by microwaves, then science says that we can heat all the air up by microwave. It’ll just take longer or need more powerful microwaves. We know that the water vapour in the atmosphere will obviously take a longer time to heat up, but the capacity and capability of such heating it is already there.
Part of the problem we have with being precise in our calculations on a global scale is that a lot of the information regarding the power outputs of many of the satellites in orbit around the Earth are confidential or secret information; especially when it comes to military or foreign governments satellite launches. Much of the information is freely accessible though, and I would encourage anybody with a lot more time on their hands than I have got, or at least with more accessible information, to consider this ‘thinking’ and help build on the mathematical models I started.
As an addendum to this post, it has recently been in the news regarding the shock that Russian and Chinese scientists have emitted a large number of high-frequency radio waves (microwaves) into the atmosphere, and they have managed to heat the atmosphere by about 100 degrees Celsius (212 Fahrenheit). The proof mounts up!
It’s going to get a whole lot busier up there, and probably a bit warmer down here as well. Here are the latest plans to fill up space around the Earth even more.
April 2019 – Amazon files plans to launch 3,000+ broadband satellites into orbit, called ‘Project Kuiper’
April 2019 – OneWeb plans to launch 650 broadband satellites into orbit
April 2019 – SpaceX plans to launch its own constellation of 12,000 satellites into orbit, under its Project Starlink