Sunday, August 27, 2017

Preventing flooding

In the tropics strong solar energy creates strong convection. So you will find that rain occurs frequently in areas near the equator and this convection and frequent rain dries out the air (the water vapour becomes rain). This results in higher level clouds - Espy’s equation says that the height of cloud bases = 125 (temperature- dewpoint temperature). To explain, the dewpoint temperature is the temperature near ground level in this equation and the temperature is the ambient temperature near ground level. The answer is in metres. Now if you had solar air heaters on every rooftop and on poles in the cities, it is my belief that you would have far greater convection and more frequent rain. This would dry the air and prevent flooding, but you would often get rain in smaller amounts. One reference that discusses this phenomenon of frequent rain and higher level clouds is “Understanding the sky” by Dennis Pagen and it can be found on the internet. To build your own solar air heater see

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