Long-Wave Radiation

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Long-Wave Radiation


(in the atmosphere), the infrared (thermal) radiation of the earth’s surface, atmosphere, and clouds. For the temperatures existing at the earth’s surface, in the troposphere, and in the stratosphere (approximately 200°-330°K), the greater proportion (up to 99 percent) of the long-wave radiation lies in the wavelength range from 4 to 40 microns (μm).

Atmospheric radiation and absorption are sharply selective. The principal gases that make up air (nitrogen, oxygen, and argon) virtually do not radiate or absorb in this range. The chief sources of long-wave radiation—water vapor, carbon dioxide gas, and ozone—are concentrated in the troposphere and stratosphere. The radiation spectrum of these gases is extremely complex. The most intensive radiation and absorption are in the wavelength range from 5 to 8μmn and above 18μm (water vapor), from 13 to 17μim (carbon dioxide), and from 9 to 10μm (ozone). The atmosphere is most transparent in the wavelength range from 8 to 12μm and from 17 to 18μm (the so-called atmospheric windows). The long-wave radiation spectrum of clouds (water drops) is close to the spectrum of water vapor but is more intense. Dense clouds are virtually opaque to long-wave radiation.

Long-wave radiation plays an important part in atmospheric processes, since it is the means by which the earth and the atmosphere exchange heat and lose it to outer space. The various forms of long-wave radiation are distinguished according to the source and the direction: the intrinsic radiation of the earth’s surface; counterradiation (the intrinsic radiation of the atmosphere that is directed towards the earth’s surface); outgoing radiation (the earth’s radiation as a planet together with the atmosphere into outer space); and the effective radiation (the difference between the earth’s radiation and the counterradiation of the atmosphere). The amount of long-wave radiation varies substantially in time and space with changes in the factors that control one or another form.

At night the long-wave radiation close to the earth’s sur-face may be measured, for example, by a radiation balance gauge or a pyrgeometer. The methods of measurement in the daytime are imperfect because of the difficulty of distinguishing long-wave radiation from short-wave radiation; therefore, the long-wave radiation is often determined by various computational methods.


Kondrat’ev, K. Ia. Aktinometriia. Leningrad, 1965.
References in periodicals archive ?
The maximum daily variation was observed for shortwave solar radiation, high for turbulent heat exchange with the atmosphere and minimum for effective long-wave radiation.
The present study demonstrates a wide interannual variability of the ice regime of a small shallow Lake Vendyurskoe (dates of freezing and ice-break, duration of ice cover and spring under-ice convection, thickness and structure of the ice sheet), as well as elements of the heat balance at the ice surface in spring (solar and effective long-wave radiation, evaporation and condensation, turbulent exchange with atmosphere).
Heat loss due to effective long-wave radiation played a leading role in the heat balance of the lake surface during early and middle winter.
6--decrease of the average relative exterior air temperature due to the long-wave radiation.
2009) where solar radiation and long-wave radiation from the sky, relative exterior air temperature, heat exchange in superficial layers and thermal energy absorption coefficients of surfaces are evaluated.
2009) it is stated that the impact of solar and long-wave radiation effect is attributed not to the relative exterior air temperature evaluation, but to the evaluation of temperature variation of the surface, affected by these radiations, as follows (ASHRAE 2001):
where: [DELTA]R--the balance of long-wave radiation (the long-wave radiation from the sky minus the long-wave radiation of the surface of the roof coating), W/[m.
surface temperature declines by 4[degrees]C due to the long-wave radiation effect.
d(cl)] was derived from clear-sky long-wave radiation [L.
i] = incident long-wave radiation towards a leaf (W/[m.
a] emitted long-wave radiation from soil or lower leaves (W/[m.
At first these long-wave radiations were called Hertzian waves, but later the name radio waves came into use instead.