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Thermodynamics and energetics of the oceans, atmosphere and climate

The climate system as a whole can be viewed as a highly complex thermal/heat engine, in which numerous processes continuously interact to transform heat into work and vice-versa. As any physical system, the climate system obeys the basic laws of thermodynamics, and we may therefore expect the tools of non-equilibrium thermodynamics to be particularly useful in describing and synthesising its properties. The main aim of this short course will be twofold. Part 1 will provide an advanced introduction to the fundamentals of equilibrium and non-equilibrium thermodynamics, irreversible processes and energetics of multicomponent stratified fluids. Part 2 will illustrate the usefulness of this viewpoint to summarize the main features of the climate system in terms of thermodynamic cycles, as well as a diagnostic tool to constrain the behavior of climate models. Although the aim is for this to be a self-contained module, some basic knowledge of the subject would be beneficial to the participants. Registration is not needed, but indication of interest would be helpful for planning purposes.

Public information:
The course will be streamed online in a Zoom webinar format. It will consist of 45 mins talks + 15 mins Q&A session.
We agreed on having the SC live streamed on Zoom through the vEGU platform. As we can dispose of 45 mins plus 15 mins Q&A, we will split ourselves like this:
- The first part, chaired by Remi Tailleux (25 mins), will provide an advanced introduction on the fundamentals of equilibrium and non-equilibrium thermodynamics, irreversible processes and energetics...
- The second part, chaired by Valerio Lembo (10 mins) and Gabriele Messori (5 mins), will illustrate some applications of thermodynamics to the study of the climate system and its general circulation.

Lecture notes and commented slides will be uploaded on the webpage of the course, within the vEGU21 programme, containing an extended version of the topics that will be touched in the short course. They will be on display and available for comments same as the other presentations at vEGU21.

Co-organized by AS6/CL6/CR8/NP9/OS5
Convener: Valerio LemboECSECS | Co-conveners: Gabriele MessoriECSECS, Remi Tailleux

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  • Remi Tailleux, University of Reading, United Kingdom
  • Valerio Lembo, CNR, Italy
  • Gabriele Messori, Uppsala University, Sweden
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