jim m
Lv 5
jim m asked in EnvironmentGlobal Warming · 1 decade ago

How much energy is needed to raise the ocean's temperature?

Where could that energy be found? You all say it would take more energy to cool the ocean and less energy to heat it. How does that work out?

11 Answers

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago
    Favourite answer

    I asked, and answered, this so many times now. Yahoo needs to advertise the Discover Button more ... anyway ...

    1. How much energy is needed to raise the ocean's temperature? 1calorie/cc/degC ... that is a defined constant

    2. Where could that energy be found? Everywhere. If you mean how is it calculated I'm getting to that.

    3. ... it would take more energy to cool the ocean and less energy to heat it. How does that work out? I think you are confused regarding the "Latent Energy of Fusion". It takes 80X more energy to melt ice to water / freeze water to ice without changing temperature than it takes to raise or lower the temperature by one degree.

    In the end the formula is:

    (326,000,000 cubic miles of water X

    (5280ft/mi X 12 in/ft X 2.54 cm/in)^3 X

    1calorie/cc/degC) /

    10^15 calories per megaTon of TNT =

    1.3 BILLION one megaton atomic bombs for every one deg C rise in the temperature of the worlds oceans.

    That has already happened. Predictions call for +5degC in as little as 50 years. That would be the equivalent of one 1megaTon atom bomb for every man woman and child currently living on the planet.

  • 1 decade ago

    There's gotta be a misunderstanding if someone said it takes less energy to cool water than it does to heat it. If 1 gram of water is to change temperature by 1 celsius degree, then it takes 1 calorie to either enter this water or to leave it. And the temp will fall or rise depending on whether that calorie came or went.

    Anyway, the sun delivers plenty of energy to warm the ocean as much as anyone might want. The trick is to get that energy into the water. Carbon dioxide in the atmosphere may not trap enough energy to boil the ocean, but it's not a big stretch to believe that it can trap enough energy to warm the ocean more than we would like.

  • Bob
    Lv 7
    1 decade ago

    The mass of the ocean is about 1 X 10 to the 21st kilograms, or 1X10 to the 24th grams.

    The heat capacity of pure water is 1 cal per gram degree C. Close enough to use that.

    So, about 1 X 10 to the 24th calories to raise the ocean temperature by 1 degree C. Or 4 X 10 to the 24th joules.

    I don't know who "you all" is but I say the energy required is the same. However, generating and transporting energy into the ocean might be more efficient than the process for cooling it. Just a guess. Based on the fact that it's more efficient to heat a house than cool it. If electricity is the source of energy for that, cooling the house takes more electricity.

    The energy comes from the Sun of course. But the recent change in temperature of the ocean is mostly due to man made green house gases holding the Sun's energy in more. It's been scientifically poven that the warming is not (mostly) due to changes in the Sun's radiation.

    In essence CO2 is causing the Sun to warm the ocean more effectively by preventing the Sun's energy from leaving. It's like a blanket. Blankets don't produce energy, but they keep you warmer.

  • PD
    Lv 6
    1 decade ago

    heat flows spontaneously from high temperature to low temperature. This is why when you open your door in the winter heat leaves your house, and when you open the door in the summer heat comes into your house.

    It will continue to do this until the hot and cold areas are the same temperature, at which point there will be no net heat flux.

    To move heat from a cold area to a hot area requires energy. If you start moving the oceans heat to some other location, the other location will get hot pretty quick, and when it gets hotter than the ocean it takes energy to continue the flow.

    Maybe this is what "you all" is talking about?

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  • 1 decade ago

    Without getting into physics, the largest player in the temperature of the ocean is the sun. When people say it would take more energy, they mean the quantitative difference between the heating power of the sun vs. the cooling power of evaporation and shade. Think of it in a smaller context and it becomes clearer. If I told you to cool off your room, you'd either have to employ freezers to freeze ice or air conditioners (which use evaporation) vs. something as easy as starting a fire (which obviously would damage your room, but would heat it quickly, nonetheless). As humans, we have more access to things that can cause heating than can cause cooling.

    Hope this helps!

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Heat transfer.

    Heat is energy, so you found it.

    It doesn't take energy to cool the ocean. There is only a transfer of energy.

    It takes the sun to heat the ocean. (underweater vulcanic activity is so small, it is not a factor).

    Think of BTUs. How many pounds of water is there in the world? You can calculate how much energy in BTUs it would take. A BTU is defined as the amount of heat required to raise the temperature of one pound of water by one degree Fahrenheit.

  • trick
    Lv 4
    1 decade ago

    to raise the temp of all the water in the ocean would take a Butt load of heat.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago



    blast the hell out of them....

    on the other hand the global warming effect should do that for you... And that uses solar energy.

    A way to acchive a highter temperature is to produce lots of CO2 and to destroy the ozone layer. That way more radiation can come in...

    But you don't want that....

  • 1 decade ago

    the same amount as it takes to cool it.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    not in your lifetime or mine,not on this planet.so dude do not give it another thought!

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