Sun Energy Reloaded (or: Make it Look Nicer)

This diagram of sun radiation being absorbed and reflected when hitting earth (from Solar Energy Facts website) is a rather weak remake of the original Nasa diagram.

I find the floating powerpointish arrows kind of disturbing, and with the arrow magnitudes not to scale, would even call it misleading. Took the time to prepare two new versions of it (actually I am beta testing the new version 2.0 of e!Sankey at the moment – so this was a nice little test case).

The first version sticks more to the original idea of the diagram shown above, but the arrow magnitudes are corrected and to scale.

The second version is closer to the original ‘Breakdown of the incoming Solar Energy’ diagram by User A1 that can be found on Wikicommons. The latter one has the flow for energy being absorbed by atmosphere (33 PW) branching off as the first arrow horizontally.

1 Comment

  1. Rob Knapp says:

    The remake is very handsome, a definite improvement graphically. Unfortunately, I think the numbers are wrong. Chasing back to the original original (NASA), which is in terms of percentages, I think the right reading is that every percentage is in relation to the original total solar input. So the total outgoing energy, reflected, re-emitted and all that, should total the same as the total incoming. And that has to be happening physically, within a tiny fraction, or the Earth would be steadily heating in a dramatic way.

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