Fröhlich, Claus Physikalisch-Meteorologisches Observatorium Davos/World Radiation Center, Davos Dorf, Switzerland.
- Variation of total solar irradiance
- Nonelectromagnetic radiation
- Additional Readings
The electromagnetic radiation and particles (electrons, protons, alpha particles, and rarer heavy atomic nuclei) emitted by the Sun. The electromagnetic radiation covers a wavelength range from x-rays to radio waves, that is, from about 0.01 nanometer to 30 km. The annual mean irradiance at Earth, integrated over the whole spectrum, is called the total solar irradiance (TSI). Its value, as derived from the observations of classical radiometers from space since 1978, is 1365 W m−2. However, results from a new type of radiometer on a NASA mission point to a lower value of 1361 W m−2. This important difference seems to be real, and it obviously has an impact on our understanding of the energy balance of the Earth and its influence on climate. Of the Sun's output, 99% is carried by radiation with wavelengths between 278 and 4600 nm, with the maximum at 472 nm. The division into two energetically equal parts is at a wavelength of 731 nm. See also: Electromagnetic radiation
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