The 'Missing Link' of Meteorology's Theory of Storms

Beyond the boundaries of established science an avalanche of exotic ideas compete for our attention. Experts tell us that these ideas should not be permitted to take up the time of working scientists, and for the most part they are surely correct. But what about the gems in the rubble pile? By what ground-rules might we bring extraordinary new possibilities to light?

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Re: The 'Missing Link' of Meteorology's Theory of Storms

Unread postby jimmcginn » Sat Jul 30, 2016 12:11 pm

fosborn_ wrote:And considered your discussion of consensus parcels theory.


Parts of parcel theory are sensible. Being a slight plasma, parcels of air do actually maintain some degree of internal coherence. Unfortunately meteorologists mostly use parcel theory to conceal some of the inanities of convection theory and latent heat theory--two of the most inane notions to ever be accepted in science.

fosborn_ wrote: Also how calm stable atmoshere let's the differentials or imbalances build up. Hurricanes seem to be avoided near jet streams and only develops into tropical storms.


Well, yes. And if you ask a meteorologists they will say it is because the jet stream disturbed the formation of the moist air. And there is some truth to that. But their delusion is that this is because the moist air is the source of the energy of storms/hurricanes, which is nonsense.

fosborn_ wrote: could there be a common principle between dust storms and dust devils, parcels and hurricanes? un interupted stable air reaching explosive differentials. creating thier own resilent system?


Yes, but the principle has to do with boundary layers (and smoothness thereof) and windshear. Convection and latent heat play no role.
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Re: The 'Missing Link' of Meteorology's Theory of Storms

Unread postby jimmcginn » Sun Jul 31, 2016 10:40 am

[img]<img%20src="http://i.stack.imgur.com/NUQCP.jpg"%20alt="enter%20image%20description%20here"/>[/img]

http://aviation.stackexchange.com/quest ... jet-engine
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Re: The 'Missing Link' of Meteorology's Theory of Storms

Unread postby MosaicDave » Sun Jul 31, 2016 6:57 pm

jimmcginn wrote:[img]<img%20src="http://i.stack.imgur.com/NUQCP.jpg"%20alt="enter%20image%20description%20here"/>[/img]

http://aviation.stackexchange.com/quest ... jet-engine


Fascinating!

I think Charles Chandler would have fun with this if he sees it - if he hasn't already.

I notice that in the aviation.stackexchange discussion, there are alleged simulations of these vortices. But the simulated vortices don't fully correspond to the vortices in the photos.

In the simulations, in the region where the vortex interacts with the ground (or the side wall of the plane), the vortex spreads out into a larger diameter structure with a lower rate of rotation as it approaches the ground. This is the same thing that you see in classical simulations of tornadoes, or in those tornado demonstrations in science museums.

But the real vortices in the photos, look actually just like real tornadoes - in that near the ground they pinch down into a tight, narrow structure with a high rate of rotation, seemingly bound tightly to the ground.

Peter Thompson (if I recall his name correctly) and Charles Chandler I think are much closer to understanding the real dynamics underlying tornadoes, and I bet there are similar things going on with the engine inlet vortices in the photos. A layer of charged air perhaps sitting on the ground; the vortex actually consisting of a spinning charge sheath, rather than just being a purely thermodynamic structure; perhaps the engine itself is able to act like some kind of a big Wimshurst (sp?) machine, actually generating a static potential difference with a consequent electrical current of ionized air...

--dc
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Re: The 'Missing Link' of Meteorology's Theory of Storms

Unread postby CharlesChandler » Mon Aug 01, 2016 12:11 pm

MosaicDave wrote:I notice that in the aviation.stackexchange discussion, there are alleged simulations of these vortices. But the simulated vortices don't fully correspond to the vortices in the photos.

In the simulations, in the region where the vortex interacts with the ground (or the side wall of the plane), the vortex spreads out into a larger diameter structure with a lower rate of rotation as it approaches the ground. This is the same thing that you see in classical simulations of tornadoes, or in those tornado demonstrations in science museums.

But the real vortices in the photos, look actually just like real tornadoes - in that near the ground they pinch down into a tight, narrow structure with a high rate of rotation, seemingly bound tightly to the ground.

Hey Dave,

Thanks for the heads-up. I only had one photo of this phenomenon -- now I have three. ;) Plus, somebody bothered to do a CFD simulation of precisely these conditions, which is useful because it indeed clearly demonstrates that CFD produces a different type of vortex. In fluid dynamics, the suction vortex starts out with a broad base at the lower boundary, and then the radius tightens in the direction of the flow, while in tornadoes, and in these inlet vortexes, the radius starts out tight on the ground, and then expands in the direction of the flow. It sounds like a trivial point of morphology, but the form of the vortex reveals that in a tornado, there is a concentration of energy release at the ground level, and this is where it gets its destructive power. In CFD, a mesocyclone with 150 m/s winds, 1 km above the ground, would only produce 30 m/s winds on the ground, which wouldn't be enough to roll trailers. But with "something" concentrating the energy at the ground level, the vortex can sweep well-built homes clean off of their foundations. And since CFD takes all of the Newtonian factors into account, that "something" can only be non-Newtonian, which can only mean that it has to be EM. So yes, there is a layer of charged air that is clinging to the ground due to the electrostatic attraction. When this charge is neutralized by lofted dust of the opposite polarity, the air is free to ascend.

Regards,
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Re: The 'Missing Link' of Meteorology's Theory of Storms

Unread postby jacmac » Mon Aug 01, 2016 8:22 pm

Oh... that CFD. COMPUTATIONAL FLUID DYNAMICS.
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Re: The 'Missing Link' of Meteorology's Theory of Storms

Unread postby jimmcginn » Mon Aug 01, 2016 8:56 pm

MosaicDave wrote:
jimmcginn wrote:[img]<img%20src="http://i.stack.imgur.com/NUQCP.jpg"%20alt="enter%20image%20description%20here"/>[/img]

http://aviation.stackexchange.com/quest ... jet-engine


Fascinating!

I think Charles Chandler would have fun with this if he sees it - if he hasn't already.

I notice that in the aviation.stackexchange discussion, there are alleged simulations of these vortices. But the simulated vortices don't fully correspond to the vortices in the photos.


They don't have all of the facts. There was zero chance of much correspondence in their models. They are not aware of the plasma phase of H2O that only emerges under wind shear conditions. You see, when warm, moist bodies of air encounter windshear from a dry body of air the microdroplets begin to spin, end over end. As they do they begin to elongate into a polymer or thread. In so doing this maximize the surface tension of water and forms a plasma (and one that is relatively strong)--a plasma comprised of trillions of polymers of H2O spinning rapidly end over end.

The principle is very simple, first you have the long observed fact that water has high surface tension. Windshear causes the spinning that causes the centrifugal force that maximizes the surface area of the microdroplet. And when you maximize surface area of liquid water you maximize surface tension. It's that simple. Of course it becomes more complex when you consider this plasma roles around itself to comprise a tube and these tubes can extend for thousands of miles, providing a friction free (surface tension is hydrophobic) tube that accelerates the contents of the tube due to differences in pressure from the inlet to the outlet of these tubes of wind-shear charged plasma.

And so, when you see a vortex you are seeing the effects of water's surface tension being maximized. This is a new discovery so the aviation people couldn't have known about it. But this explains why there is zero chance of any correspondence in the models by the aviation people. They tried to put the pieces of the puzzle together but didn't have all the pieces.

And this is also why meteorological models of tornadogenesis are so inept. They have zero understanding of this newly discovered plasma phase of H2O that forms only under particular wind shear conditions


MosaicDave wrote:In the simulations, in the region where the vortex interacts with the ground (or the side wall of the plane), the vortex spreads out into a larger diameter structure with a lower rate of rotation as it approaches the ground. This is the same thing that you see in classical simulations of tornadoes, or in those tornado demonstrations in science museums.

But the real vortices in the photos, look actually just like real tornadoes


Right. Because real tornadoes have a surface. A vortex without a surface is just spinning air. Without an element to create a surface--such as a plasma--you can't get it to look like a tornado. Plasmas have a surface. The vortices of tornadoes have a surface--it is plainly observable.

MosaicDave wrote: - in that near the ground they pinch down into a tight, narrow structure with a high rate of rotation, seemingly bound tightly to the ground.


It's low pressure energy that is extracted from the jet streams and delivered through vortices. So it's suction. That is why it bonds to the ground.

MosaicDave wrote:Peter Thompson (if I recall his name correctly) and Charles Chandler I think are much closer to understanding the real dynamics underlying tornadoes,


(The name Peter Jacobsen comes to mind for some reason.)

Neither one of them has made the conceptual breakthrough to the realization that plasmas are involved. Same is true for all of meteorology (but I guess that is to be expected since they don't do experiments and, therefore, aren't real scientists).

MosaicDave wrote: and I bet there are similar things going on with the engine inlet vortices in the photos. A layer of charged air perhaps sitting on the ground;


Charged air? Why?

MosaicDave wrote: the vortex actually consisting of a spinning charge sheath, rather than just being a purely thermodynamic structure; perhaps the engine itself is able to act like some kind of a big Wimshurst (sp?) machine, actually generating a static potential difference with a consequent electrical current of ionized air...

--dc


I disagree. Or, I should say, I disagree that the observed effect requires us to assume "electrical current of ionized air." I definitely do agree with your characterization that it consists of "a spinning charge sheath." But for me the sheath involves a plasma that is a consequence of H2O surface tension being maximized under wind shear conditions. (Don't worry, the underlying theory has all been worked out. It involves H2O hydrogen bonds and polarity.)

Electricity really isn't all that involved in this except to the extent that it is involve in all plasmas. The existence of this phase is only possible under the conditions of wind shear which require long, smooth, distinct boundary layers. This is why the phenomena is rare. The prerequisite conditions are rare. (Long distinct boundary layers only emerge under calm conditions.)
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Re: The 'Missing Link' of Meteorology's Theory of Storms

Unread postby CharlesChandler » Tue Aug 02, 2016 4:59 am

jimmcginn wrote:
MosaicDave wrote:But the real vortices in the photos, look actually just like real tornadoes

Right. Because real tornadoes have a surface. A vortex without a surface is just spinning air. Without an element to create a surface--such as a plasma--you can't get it to look like a tornado. Plasmas have a surface. The vortices of tornadoes have a surface--it is plainly observable.

Tornadoes don't always have surfaces -- they can be invisible.

http://charles-chandler.org/Geophysics/Data/2007/10/30/Oran,%20Algeria%20(waterspout).jpg

See this for more discussion:

http://charles-chandler.org/Geophysics/ ... tric#id_25

Since the lowest pressure anywhere in the tornado is at the ground, water should condense there, if anywhere. And yet tornadoes with invisible bases are well-known. At some point above the ground, the water vapor condenses, making the vortex visible. This is especially true of tornadoes over lakes or the ocean, where we'd expect the inflow to be fully saturated with water vapor.

Also, the same principles apply to situations where water definitely isn't the prime mover, such as in dust devils in the middle of deserts here on Earth, or on the surface of Mars.

Also, the same distinctive morphologies of tornadoes were recreated in the laboratory using kerosene as the vapor/condensate. See:

http://charles-chandler.org/Geophysics/ ... tric#id_28

In the case of vortex breakdown, all of the behaviors are predictable, and reproducible in the laboratory, if the pressure deficit relaxes in the direction of the flow. It doesn't require a sheath (charged or otherwise), nor is there a sheath of condensation, in baseless vortexes or after vortex breakdown.

The key to the whole thing is tackling the energy budget head-on. The lowest pressure, tightest radius, and fastest wind speeds in a tornadic vortex are on the ground, where the friction is the greatest. This would seem to be a clear violation of very basic principles of thermodynamics. Calling it a charged sheath doesn't help, because that still doesn't explain the concentration of energy release at the ground. Saying that there is an electric current inside the vortex is true, but that still doesn't answer the question. The only way in physics to get an unexpected concentration of energy is with the application of another type of force. In the relevant conditions, the only force available is the electric force. So it has to be charged air, and the force in question is the electrostatic attraction of the charged air to the oppositely charged ground. Once the tornadic inflow is bound to the surface, the flow field is modified, with the air staying on the ground longer than it would have a right, and only breaking away from the ground when the pressure deficit becomes extreme. This is what concentrates the energy at the ground level.
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Re: The 'Missing Link' of Meteorology's Theory of Storms

Unread postby jimmcginn » Tue Aug 02, 2016 10:51 pm

CharlesChandler wrote:
MosaicDave wrote:I notice that in the aviation.stackexchange discussion, there are alleged simulations of these vortices. But the simulated vortices don't fully correspond to the vortices in the photos.

In the simulations, in the region where the vortex interacts with the ground (or the side wall of the plane), the vortex spreads out into a larger diameter structure with a lower rate of rotation as it approaches the ground. This is the same thing that you see in classical simulations of tornadoes, or in those tornado demonstrations in science museums.

But the real vortices in the photos, look actually just like real tornadoes - in that near the ground they pinch down into a tight, narrow structure with a high rate of rotation, seemingly bound tightly to the ground.

Hey Dave,

Thanks for the heads-up. I only had one photo of this phenomenon -- now I have three. ;) Plus, somebody bothered to do a CFD simulation of precisely these conditions, which is useful because it indeed clearly demonstrates that CFD produces a different type of vortex. In fluid dynamics, the suction vortex starts out with a broad base at the lower boundary, and then the radius tightens in the direction of the flow, while in tornadoes, and in these inlet vortexes, the radius starts out tight on the ground, and then expands in the direction of the flow. It sounds like a trivial point of morphology, but the form of the vortex reveals that in a tornado, there is a concentration of energy release at the ground level, and this is where it gets its destructive power. In CFD, a mesocyclone with 150 m/s winds, 1 km above the ground, would only produce 30 m/s winds on the ground, which wouldn't be enough to roll trailers. But with "something" concentrating the energy at the ground level, the vortex can sweep well-built homes clean off of their foundations. And since CFD takes all of the Newtonian factors into account, that "something" can only be non-Newtonian, which can only mean that it has to be EM. So yes, there is a layer of charged air that is clinging to the ground due to the electrostatic attraction. When this charge is neutralized by lofted dust of the opposite polarity, the air is free to ascend.
Charles


Wouldn't you agree that the source of the energy in these pictures is the engine of the aircraft? And wouldn't you agree that this low pressure, energy moves down form the engine, through the conduit of the vortice to interact with the ground where, as you say, " . . . there is a concentration of energy release at the ground level, and this is where it gets its destructive power?"

Now here's a question. What is the analogous equivalent of the engine with natural tornadoes?
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Re: The 'Missing Link' of Meteorology's Theory of Storms

Unread postby CharlesChandler » Wed Aug 03, 2016 8:31 am

jimmcginn wrote:Wouldn't you agree that the source of the energy in these pictures is the engine of the aircraft? And wouldn't you agree that this low pressure, energy moves down form the engine, through the conduit of the vortex to interact with the ground...

Yes.

jimmcginn wrote:...where, as you say, " . . . there is a concentration of energy release at the ground level, and this is where it gets its destructive power?"

The point is that fluid dynamics can't concentrate the energy, away from the source of the energy. Here is the fluid dynamic simulation of the phenomenon:

http://i.stack.imgur.com/JqwYJ.jpg

Now is here an actual inlet vortex:

http://charles-chandler.org/Geophysics/Images/Vortex%20(vacuum)%2010.jpg

Notice that in fluid dynamics, where the vortex meets the solid surface, the radius is the widest, whereas in a real inlet vortex, the radius is the tightest at the solid surface. The difference is non-trivial -- the tighter the radius, the lower the pressure, and the faster the wind speed, meaning greater destructive power. So if these vortexes didn't get the concentration of energy at the solid surface from fluid dynamics, where did they get it from? That could only happen with the introduction of another force, which can only be EM.

jimmcginn wrote:Now here's a question. What is the analogous equivalent of the engine with natural tornadoes?

In both cases, it takes the introduction of another force to keep the air bound to the solid surface longer than it has a right. And the only non-Newtonian force strong enough to do this, and which is operative at the macroscopic scale, is the electric force. So the inflow has to be charged, for the air to be pulled by the electric force toward the solid surface. In the case of a thunderstorms, the charged air is a by-product of the charge separation within the storm. In the case of jet engine inlet vortexes, the ionized air comes from the exhaust from the engines, which is why inlet vortexes are more common when the reverse thrusters are engaged -- if the plane isn't moving very fast, the exhaust is redirected back to the front of the engine, though it clings to the ground because of the electrostatic attraction.
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Re: The 'Missing Link' of Meteorology's Theory of Storms

Unread postby willendure » Thu Aug 04, 2016 3:40 pm

CharlesChandler wrote:
jimmcginn wrote:Wouldn't you agree that the source of the energy in these pictures is the engine of the aircraft? And wouldn't you agree that this low pressure, energy moves down form the engine, through the conduit of the vortex to interact with the ground...

Yes.


Something I am confused about, but I think it is just my misunderstanding.

In these pictures the funnel is wider at the ground. This is unlike some attempted fan driven tornado simulations, where the funnel is wide at the top near the power source.

In a real tornado the funnel is wider near the ground. Now, I did not really understand the physics on your website I must admit, but I kind of got the impression that this means it is powered by some effect at the ground, and not up in the sky?

But in these jet engine pictures, the power is coming from the engine - so why not wider at that end?

Is it nothing to do with where the power is coming from to drive the twister?
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Re: The 'Missing Link' of Meteorology's Theory of Storms

Unread postby willendure » Thu Aug 04, 2016 3:43 pm

CharlesChandler wrote:In both cases, it takes the introduction of another force to keep the air bound to the solid surface longer than it has a right. And the only non-Newtonian force strong enough to do this, and which is operative at the macroscopic scale, is the electric force. So the inflow has to be charged, for the air to be pulled by the electric force toward the solid surface. In the case of a thunderstorms, the charged air is a by-product of the charge separation within the storm. In the case of jet engine inlet vortexes, the ionized air comes from the exhaust from the engines, which is why inlet vortexes are more common when the reverse thrusters are engaged -- if the plane isn't moving very fast, the exhaust is redirected back to the front of the engine, though it clings to the ground because of the electrostatic attraction.


Ok, just ignore my previous question as this answers it. The shape of the funnel is basically showing that ionized air is attracted to the ground and that is what determines its shape.
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Re: The 'Missing Link' of Meteorology's Theory of Storms

Unread postby jimmcginn » Thu Aug 04, 2016 9:15 pm

willendure wrote:
CharlesChandler wrote:In both cases, it takes the introduction of another force to keep the air bound to the solid surface longer than it has a right. And the only non-Newtonian force strong enough to do this, and which is operative at the macroscopic scale, is the electric force. So the inflow has to be charged, for the air to be pulled by the electric force toward the solid surface. In the case of a thunderstorms, the charged air is a by-product of the charge separation within the storm. In the case of jet engine inlet vortexes, the ionized air comes from the exhaust from the engines, which is why inlet vortexes are more common when the reverse thrusters are engaged -- if the plane isn't moving very fast, the exhaust is redirected back to the front of the engine, though it clings to the ground because of the electrostatic attraction.


Ok, just ignore my previous question as this answers it. The shape of the funnel is basically showing that ionized air is attracted to the ground and that is what determines its shape.


Well, I"m not sure if i'm understanding the different views here. To me it seems obvious that the force holding the tail to the ground is suction--low pressure energy. And it is delivered in a spinning plasma (a vortice) that acts as a conduit for its high energy (high velocity), low pressure contents. This capability is afforded by the high surface tension of water. And the fact that H2O's surface tension is maximized under wind shear conditions.

Other than the fact that it is involved with all chemistry (including hydrogen bonds betweeen H2O molecules--and plasmas) I see no need to conjecture a special role for electricity in all of this. Sure, Newton didn't know about electricity. But he didn't know about hydrogen bonding (H2O polarity) either. Nor did Einstein. Nor did Feyman.

Charles, do you think the cone of a tornado is created by electricity? Do you have your own explanation?
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Re: The 'Missing Link' of Meteorology's Theory of Storms

Unread postby CharlesChandler » Thu Aug 04, 2016 11:24 pm

jimmcginn wrote:Well, I"m not sure if i'm understanding the different views here. To me it seems obvious that the force holding the tail to the ground is suction--low pressure energy. And it is delivered in a spinning plasma (a vortice) that acts as a conduit for its high energy (high velocity), low pressure contents. This capability is afforded by the high surface tension of water. And the fact that H2O's surface tension is maximized under wind shear conditions.

Other than the fact that it is involved with all chemistry (including hydrogen bonds betweeen H2O molecules--and plasmas) I see no need to conjecture a special role for electricity in all of this. Sure, Newton didn't know about electricity. But he didn't know about hydrogen bonding (H2O polarity) either. Nor did Einstein. Nor did Feyman.

Charles, do you think the cone of a tornado is created by electricity? Do you have your own explanation?

I agree that a tornado is a suction vortex. But in no sense does a suction vortex require plasma, much less the plasma of a specific compound such as water -- vortexes can occur in any fluid (liquid, gas, or plasma), and in any combination of elements and/or compounds. The "sheath" that projects the low pressure away from the source of the low pressure, and which will ultimately latch onto a solid surface, is just the centrifugal force of the rotation, which prevents the inflow from getting into the core. The centrifugal force of air can be calculated, given its mass and speed, and the results match laboratory measurements of non-tornadic suction vortexes to within a couple of percents. CFD simulations do this regularly, without calculating the effects of surface tension in any condensate that might appear, and such simulations are used reliably in all types of engineering applications, including aerodynamics, naval architecture, pump design, etc. Vortexes occur all the time, and are no mystery to those who understand the Newtonian principles that are being instantiated.

The key to understanding tornadic vortexes is in clearly identifying the difference between them and standard suction vortexes. In fluid dynamics, a suction vortex is supposed to start with a wide base, and then the radius is supposed to get smaller with proximity to the source of the low pressure. This is because the pressure is the lowest at the source of the low pressure, and this supplies the centripetal force necessary to tighten the radius. In other words, the radius of the vortex reveals the pressure of the vortex at that stage, so where you see a narrow radius, you know that the pressure is very low, and where the radius is large, you know that the pressure isn't as low. The curious thing about tornadic vortexes is that there is an extreme low pressure at the solid surface, away from the source of the low pressure, as revealed by the tighter radius on the ground, and as confirmed by instrumentation. So the question is: what is responsible for that extreme low pressure? This cannot be simulated by CFD, because it isn't predicted by Newtonian mechanics, nor can it be reproduced in the laboratory, even when water vapor that can condense is present. This is the question that is directly addressed by my model.
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Re: The 'Missing Link' of Meteorology's Theory of Storms

Unread postby Lloyd » Fri Aug 05, 2016 7:12 am

CharlesChandler wrote:Vortexes [suction vortexes?] occur all the time, and are no mystery to those who understand the Newtonian principles that are being instantiated. The key to understanding tornadic vortexes is in clearly identifying the difference between them and standard suction vortexes. In fluid dynamics, a suction vortex is supposed to start with a wide base, and then the radius is supposed to get smaller with proximity to the source of the low pressure. This is because the pressure is the lowest at the source of the low pressure, and this supplies the centripetal force necessary to tighten the radius. In other words, the radius of the vortex reveals the pressure of the vortex at that stage, so where you see a narrow radius, you know that the pressure is very low, and where the radius is large, you know that the pressure isn't as low. The curious thing about tornadic vortexes is that there is an extreme low pressure at the solid surface, away from the source of the low pressure, as revealed by the tighter radius on the ground, and as confirmed by instrumentation. So the question is: what is responsible for that extreme low pressure? This cannot be simulated by CFD, because it isn't predicted by Newtonian mechanics, nor can it be reproduced in the laboratory, even when water vapor that can condense is present. This is the question that is directly addressed by my model.

Steven Rado in discussing the aether in his CD on aethrokinematics said motion results in lower pressure than stasis. The example he gave was two balls suspended on strings so that the balls were about an inch apart at their near sides. If you blow air between the balls, they move toward each other, because the moving air between them is lower pressure than the slower moving air around them. So it seems that the low pressure at the base of a tornado must be started by motion of the ionized air near the ground. I remember a TPOD once said that the air around thunderstorms is ionized for miles away from the clouds and the ionization gets the clear air moving toward the storm near the ground and then upward through the storm center. But it seems that tornadoes tend to form away from storm centers and can number up to four per storm, I think, about equal distances from the center. If my impressions are right, then something causes vortex motion at those locations and distances. Air under normal pressure is pushed toward any nearby low pressure area by the weight of the normal pressured air. If the low pressure area is small, the pushing tends to produce a vortex. Magnetism produces circular motion in ionized air or plasma, I think. But I don't know if there would be any significant magnetic forces involved in storms and tornadoes. Well, maybe this can help to explain matters a little, though I'd like to see a clearer explanation than these impressions of mine.
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Re: The 'Missing Link' of Meteorology's Theory of Storms

Unread postby CharlesChandler » Fri Aug 05, 2016 11:43 am

Lloyd wrote:Well, maybe this can help to explain matters a little, though I'd like to see a clearer explanation than these impressions of mine.

I think that I'm bad at explaining this stuff, because I've been so deep in the theory for so long that I have long since forgotten the point of entry. So I don't know what pieces I have to supply to people so that they'll get it, the same way I do. But here's an analogy that might help.

Imagine standing on a steel deck. Now imagine that some hot, positively charged air has been manufactured. This electric charge will induce an opposite charge in any nearby conductor, and thereafter be attracted to it. Thus the positively charged air will induce a negative charge in the surface of the steel deck, and then the air will be pulled down to the deck by the electric force. And it doesn't take much electric force to overpower gravity, and get hot air, which ordinarily would have risen due to its buoyancy, to be held down to the deck. So you have air that has a build-up of thermal potential, which will rise if given the chance, but the electrostatic potential is offsetting the thermal potential, and holding the air down to the deck.

Now, reach over to the welding machine next to you, grab the whip, and dial up a negative charge to the tip of the whip, and point it at the deck. If you don't dial up enough voltage to get an arc between the whip and the deck, you'll still get a flow of electrons as a dark discharge. These electrons will be attracted to the positively charged air, and they'll burrow their way through the neutrally charged air to get down to it. On arrival, the electrons will neutralize the positively charged air, which will then be free to ascend, due to the buoyancy of hot air. Now you have an updraft.

Air will then converge along the deck toward the updraft, to replace the air that rose. When it gets to where the electron stream is, it will get neutralized too, releasing it from its electrostatic attraction to the deck, enabling it to rise as well. So now you have a sustained updraft, and a sustained convergence of air moving horizontally across the deck.

If the horizontal inflow to the updraft is asymmetrical, a vortex will form, so the updraft will spiral around the axis of the vortex as it rises. Interestingly, the evacuation of matter in the core of the vortex makes it a better conductor. So the electrons flowing down from the welding whip will prefer the vortex as a conduit to get to the positively charged air clinging to the deck. This enables even more current to flow, and thus even more positively charged air can get neutralized and join the updraft.

The enhanced electric current through the vortex also generates ohmic heating, which further increases the buoyancy of the updraft in the vortex. So electric currents and fluid dynamic vortexes are mutually enhancing.

Finally, the air skidding along the deck picks up even more heat due to skin friction. So when it gets neutralized by the electric current inside the vortex, it will rise even faster.

Thus a vortex has been formed on top of the steel deck, just by the neutralization of positively charged air flowing downward, and once formed, the vortex and the electric current are self-stabilizing. This will continue until the supply of positively charged air runs out, or the supply of electrons to the welding whip is shut off. And notice that we didn't need any sort of updraft over our heads to kick this thing off -- it all started just with charge recombination.

This is analogous to tornadoes. There doesn't have to be a large rotating updraft inside the thunderstorm for a tornado to form, but the electric current inside the tornado was there every time somebody tried to measure it. And the current isn't going into the ground, or it would have left a mark, and which has never been found. So the current is going into the air itself. And the smell of ionized air is distinctive, and which has been reported frequently in the tornadic inflow. So that's positively charged air flowing toward a neutralizing current inside the vortex.
Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and he'll spend the rest of the day sitting in a small boat, drinking beer and telling dirty jokes.

Volcanoes
Astrophysics wants its physics back.
The Electromagnetic Nature of Tornadic Supercell Thunderstorms
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CharlesChandler
 
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