Blanket Quiz For Dummies

If you put a blanket over a cold rock, does it keep the rock warm?

About Tony Heller

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39 Responses to Blanket Quiz For Dummies

  1. daveandrews723 says:

    reminds me of my ex-wife. πŸ™‚

  2. IbSnooker says:

    Well, if it’s a rock hyrax it does.

  3. tom0mason says:

    Please define the term ‘warm’.


    • geran says:

      Please define all of the initial conditions, unless this is just IPCC-type “science”.

      • squid2112 says:

        Well now, according the IPCC, and the “greenhouse effect” hypothesis, the rock will continue to heat until a “tipping point” is reached, at such time, the Earth’s crust is no longer able to support the rock, giving way to a decent to the center of the Earth, whereby feedback mechanisms will cause a runaway feedback loop, destroying the Earth and all contents and inhabitants of this solar system. I think they made a movie like this once, The China Syndrome? …

        • Anto says:

          squid – I think you’re mistaking the IPCC’s interpretation/exaggeration of the greenhouse effect, with the actual greenhouse effect.

          That’s not what Tony is saying. He’s saying that, objectively, there is a greenhouse effect. It’s just that it doesn’t have the scary, positive forcings and feedbacks that would lead to the doomsday scenarios of which the catastrophists are so certain.

          All evidence points to a climate sensitivity to a doubling of CO2 of less than natural variability.

  4. Lawrence13 says:

    Well that would depend. Is the blanket transparent and is the sun shining

    • Tel says:

      Yes, you can create a structure that allows energy in as radiation, and prevents heat loss due to convection. Such a structure is generally called a “green house” or just a hot car parked in the sun.

      The reason this works, is because convection it the primary mechanism for heat loss on the surface of the Earth. As a good first approximation, ignore everything other than convection.

  5. SunSword says:

    (1) If the air surrounding the blanket is warmer than the rock, the blanket will keep the rock cooler for a longer period of time than if there was no blanket over the rock.
    (2) If the air surrounding the blanket is cooler than the rock, the blanket will keep the rock warmer for a longer period of time than if there was no blanket over the rock.
    (3) If the rock is naturally radioactive, the blanket shielding the rock will enable the rock to warm itself faster than if there was no blanket over the rock.

  6. 1957chev says:

    Liberal answer…..It’s all your fault, regardless of the outcome…. pay up.

  7. Bad Andrew says:

    I don’t like Blanket Statements. πŸ˜›


  8. The blanket slows the rock from getting warmer and the air from getting colder. Remember the laws of thermo, heat flows from hotter to colder, not from colder to hotter. W/o the blanket the rock will gain heat and the air will lose heat at a given rate until they are at the same temperature. That will still happen, the blanket just slows it all down. All three will eventually end up the same temp.

    If the air is hotter than your swimming pool, sensible heat will move from the air to the pool. So how come you need a heater? Because the latent heat of the water evaporating from the pool moves a thousand times more energy from the pool to the air than the sensible heat of the air heats the water. Latent heat doesn’t care about the temperature difference, only the concentration of water vapor.
    The AGW CO2 loop works on sensible heat which means it makes a spits worth of heat difference to the ocean which is evaporating gazillion tons of water each day to feed the cloud-precipitation cycle.

  9. HankH says:

    For a small $8.75 million, we can study the question. The foregone conclusion is global warming is causing rocks to loose their heat more rapidly as the blanket test will prove, resulting in a positive feedback that makes global warming much worse than we thought. In the conclusion section of the abstract we will make a desperate plea underscoring the need to fund additional research.

  10. Anything that limits convection will reduce heat loss, including blankets, greenhouses, insulation in the attic, etc., but not gases free to adiabatically rise and cool.

    What happens when you open the panes of glass at the top of a greenhouse? The temp equalizes with outdoors since convection is no longer limited.

  11. Cold air is more dense and will flow according to gravity. A physical property, not thermal.

  12. Anto says:

    In reality, Earth’s atmosphere (and oceans) act as a moderator – not as a greenhouse, in the sense that most people understand it. The Moon ranges from 120C to -170C day/night. Both receive the same daylight energy from the Sun and Earth’s albedo is only around 30% greater than the Moon.

    So, the atmosphere acts like a greenhouse or blanket at night, but like an evaporative/convective cooler during the day.

  13. au1corsair says:

    Somebody here is overqualified to be elected to Congress–overqualified to make climate policy!

  14. RCM says:

    I have carefully read all the explanation here, and I believe despite all the pseudo science and calculations shown, the correct answer hasn’t been given yet. It is quite simple and plain to someone with even my limited education. I’m rather disappointed, frankly.

    Electric blanket, duh!

  15. MrX says:

    I just want to know who the heck is Tony?

    • Ernest Bush says:

      You really want to know who is Steven Goddard. Click the appropriate link in the site banner.

    • Jason Calley says:

      “Steven Goddard” is a pseudonym for Tony Heller, just like “Jason Calley” is a pseudonym for — just a moment…
      (What? No, I am online at the moment… Really? Is it important? Ok…)
      Sorry, just had something come up, I have to go.

  16. Andrew S says:

    Blanket Jackson?

  17. Beale says:

    Oddly enough, I’ve been thinking about that very question. If I understand the question correctly, the answer is “No”. If the stone is warmer than its surroundings to begin with, the blanket may reduce the rate at which it cools, but won’t stop it from assuming the temperature of its surroundings.

    Now, if in imagination you replace the stone with something that produces heat (like you or me) you have a very different situation.

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