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Greenhouse effect could turn Earth into a hellish planet: critical factor found

Dmytro IvancheskulNews
Earth may turn into a double of Venus

The greenhouse effect is capable of turning a habitable planet into a hellish world in the short term. This applies not only to some imaginary exoplanets in our galaxy, but also to the future of the Earth.

This is evidenced by a study by scientists published in the journal Astronomy & Astrophysics. A 3D model of the global climate has shown that the temperature on Earth could rise by 1000 degrees Celsius or more in the future due to the greenhouse effect.

The work was carried out by a team of astronomers from the University of Geneva (UNIGE) and CNRS laboratories in Paris and Bordeaux. They saw that after the initial stages of the planet's climate transformation, the atmosphere, structure, and cloud cover of the planet undergo such significant changes that the effect is difficult to stop.

On Earth, this can happen if there is a slight change in solar brightness or if the average global temperature rises by several tens of degrees. Eventually, this will lead to the planet becoming completely inhospitable.

The simulation showed that the greenhouse effect could turn the Earth into a new Venus, with a hellish temperature of about 1000 degrees Celsius. That's hot enough to melt lead.

One of the biggest factors in this critical transformation is, oddly enough, water vapor. Its peculiarity is that water vapor creates a kind of barrier for solar radiation absorbed by the planet's surface and prevents it from returning back to space. As a result, the Earth appears to be covered with a blanket under which this heat is stored.

At the same time, scientists note that the greenhouse effect is not an absolute evil. In small doses, this phenomenon helps to keep the water in the Earth's oceans from freezing. But there is a certain limit after which the accumulated heat begins to play against the planet.

In particular, the oceans will begin to evaporate, raising large amounts of water vapor into the atmosphere, which will cause even more warming.

Venus, according to scientists, is a prime example of what can happen if we lose control of the greenhouse effect.

Guillaume Chavereau, head of the study and former researcher at the Department of Astronomy at the University of Geneva, noted that when the amount of water vapor crosses a critical threshold, the situation will begin to unfold in such a way that the oceans will evaporate completely and the temperature will reach several hundred degrees.

According to Space, during the study, scientists also found that the greenhouse effect leads to the emergence of a strange cloud structure that makes the greenhouse effect irreversible.

The appearance of such clouds, according to Shavero, indicates that profound changes have taken place in the atmosphere, which now "does not reflect the temperature inversion characteristic of the Earth's atmosphere" and is becoming divided into the troposphere and stratosphere.

As for the significance of this study for the Earth, the team calculated that it would only take a small increase in solar radiation and a tens of degrees increase in Earth's temperature to trigger the apocalyptic effect. If this happens, Earth will eventually become as hostile to life as its neighbor Venus.

As Chavero warned, evaporation of 10 meters of the oceans' surface would lead to a 1 bar increase in atmospheric pressure at ground level. This would cause temperatures on the planet to rise to over 500 degrees Celsius in a few hundred years. Eventually, the surface pressure would reach 273 bar and the temperature would reach over 1,500 degrees Celsius. This will be the period when all the oceans will completely evaporate.

Earlier, OBOZ.UA told that the Earth can survive the death of the Sun, but this will not mean salvation for people.

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