Sunday, August 16, 2009

Computer "Models" Don't Necessarily Work??

In "Tropical Storm Spotted on Saturn's Moon Titan" (, 12 August 2009 01:04 pm ET), Clara Moskowitz writes:
(Aug. 15) - A tropical storm was not what astronomers expected to see when they pointed their telescopes toward the equator of Saturn's moon Titan last summer.

But that's exactly what they found on this beguiling moon, home to a weather system both eerily familiar and perplexingly strange. The discovery was announced Wednesday.

In many ways Titan's climate resembles that of Earth, but instead of a water cycle, Titan has a methane cycle. Clouds, rain and lakes all exist on Titan, but they are all made of methane. In the moon's frigid climate, any water is frozen into rock-hard ice.

"The models predicted that the equatorial region should be very dry and should not support cloud formation," said astronomer Henry Roe of Lowell Observatory in Arizona. "But this episode created clouds over both the equator and the south pole. We don't know what set off that sequence, but something gave a pretty good kick to the atmosphere."
Reality does not slavishly obey the computer "models"?? Who'd a thunk?

Here's some words of wisdom more scientists need to grasp:
"We really need to keep observing Titan in detail for many more years in order to get a true understanding of how its seasons change," Roe said.
On earth as it is in heaven, forever and ever, amen.