Energy does not vanish –The energy of a closed system is steady. It is not lost but rather converted into other forms, such as when kinetic energy is transferred into thermal energy or vice versa heat results in a force. However, this fundamental principle of natural science is often still a problem for climate research. For example, in case of the calculation of ocean currents, where small-scale vortices as well as mixing processes they induce need to be considered, without fully understanding where the energy for their creation originates from. This is similar in the atmosphere, the only difference being that air is moving instead of water. Again, local turbulences can drive larger movements or vice versa waves on a larger scale can disintegrate into small structures. All these processes are important for the Earth’s climate and determine how temperatures will rise in the future.
Mathematics, Informatics and Natural Sciences
Institut für Meereskunde
Prof. Dr. Carsten Eden
Tel.: +49 40 42838-7623 E-Mail: carsten.eden"AT"uni-hamburg.de