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Climate Change classes 1
Preface and Structure
1 Energy from the Sun
Background solar radiation
Experiment solar radiation
Links Sun and Earth
2 The Oceans
3 Albedo
UQ 3 May 07 Cars and ozone
UQ 2 Mar 07 Urban air
Climate change 2007 IPCC special
UQ 1 Nov Dec 06 Particles in air
Special: Oct. 2006 Communication
Nr 10 Sept. 2006 Africa's emissions
Nr 9 July 06 Air traffic
Special: June 06 Climate summit
Nr 8 April 2006 Ozone & N2 cycle
Nr 7 March 2006 Climate modeling
Nr 6 Feb. 2006 acid rain
Nr 5 Jan. 2006 oceanic sulfur
Special: Nov 05 Ozzy Ozone
Nr 4 Oct. 2005 light/satellites
Special: Sept 05 Cyclones
Nr 3 Sept. 2005 methane/energy
Special: July 05 Greenhouse Earth
Nr 2 June 2005 forest/aerosols
No 1 May 2005 vegetation/CO2

Link list on the Sun as energy source and its relevance for the Earth

Basic information on the sun

The SOHO project invites you to explore the Sun and gives very basic as well as more detailed information.
Material is also provided for teaching about the Sun to different age groups:


Visualisation of the Sunís impact

The Sun transfers energy to our planet Earth and heats it. Animations of temperature distributions on land and sea can help to visualise which regions of the Earth receive more or less energy:


Inclination of the Earth's axis and seasons

Many websites illustrate the Earth's orbit and how seasons are caused by Earth's tilted axis. You will find good explanations and illustrations on the following pages:
Length of days at different latitudes:

The seasons explained in a very nice video


Solar radiation and solar constant

Basics about solar radiation are explained on common pages like the one of Wikipedia

But the real energy transferred varies as for example illustrated on the following HelioClim page:


The variability of the solar constant is too complex a topic to be taught in classes. If you would like to read more than explained here in the background article, you will find a good summary of investigation methods in the following paper (Attention: PDF document - loading time):

If students are interested in interactions between Sun and Earth other than light, the following NASA / Themis page can give an introduction:


Energy distribution and radiation budget

The following very simple but very efficient introduction page from explains, what happens to the Sunís energy on the Earth, how it is distributed by winds and by the oceans:

This page from Earth Science Research has a stronger emphasis on the role of the oceans:


Numerous pages describe the Earth's radiation budget related to the greenhouse effect, but some also make the link to the solar energy and its distribution, like the following ESPERE page:
or this page from NASA:




last updated 24.04.2008 | © ACCENT - Atmospheric Composition Change 2013