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Where does the Earth lose its energy from solar?

  1. Jul 23, 2006 #1

    Pengwuino

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    Ok the title description isn't entirely accurate but its kind awhat im asking.

    As we all know, the sun is constantly inputing energy into the Earth and many other planets. What i wanted to know is exactly where do planets lose this energy? I wouldn't expect that they are just constantly getting hotter and hotter and hotter (or is this true?) and reflection out of our atmosphere doesn't account for all of it so where do planets and the Earth lose their excess energy?
     
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  3. Jul 23, 2006 #2

    russ_watters

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    The exact same way we get it: radiation. We've reached an equilibrium(more or less).
     
  4. Jul 23, 2006 #3

    Pengwuino

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    What does it radiate out as?
     
  5. Jul 23, 2006 #4

    Bystander

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    Near and far IR.
     
  6. Jul 23, 2006 #5

    Pengwuino

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    Is this true for most/all planets?
     
  7. Jul 23, 2006 #6

    Bystander

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    Planets, moons, space rocks, dust, gas, and anything else above the CMB temperature.
     
  8. Jul 23, 2006 #7

    Pengwuino

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    Thanks for the info.
     
  9. Jul 23, 2006 #8

    Danger

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    Who let you out of GD? :grumpy:
    Anywho.... the answer is entirely dependent upon the characteristics of the planet in reference.
    Most planets will probably mimic to some extent our own solar system. ie: a balance of gas giants, rocky sorts, and some smaller stuff as baby planets or asteroids. Some are more reflective of solar radiation (high albedo), and some might soak it up during the day and re-radiate it as IR during the night. And if one happens to be life-bearing, then a fair amount of the energy goes into the biosphere.
     
  10. Jul 23, 2006 #9

    Bystander

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    Long as a body is above 0 K, it's radiating. If there is radiation incident upon it, it'll be absorbing some fraction of that incident radiation as it is radiating.
     
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