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Newcastle University Assignment of Energy Sources and Storage By Roberto Sacoto Student number: 120395769 Msc.

Mechanical Engineering Dr. Lidija Siller a) Assuming that we can model the Earth as a perfect blackbody with a temperature of 300 K, at what wavelength is the emission of radiation the most intense? Which region of the electromagnetic spectrum does this correspond to? Wiens displacement law states next: max x T=
Simplification of Planck distribution

Where, max= wavelength where the emission radiation is the most intense T = temperature of the black-body = constant = 2898 mK Hence, max = 2898 mK/ 300 K = 9.66 m = 0,00966 mm Table 1 shows the light comparison values.

Light Comparison Table Name Wavelength Gamma ray Less than 0.01nm X-Ray 0.01nm - 10nm Ultraviolet 10nm - 380nm Visible 380nm - 700nm Infrared 700nm - 1mm Microwave 1mm - 1 m Radio 1m - 100,000Km
Table 1. Light Comparison Table (Haynes, 2011)

The result obtained above indicates that if the Earth is considered as a blackbody and its temperature is 300 K. Then, the maximum wavelength the emission of radiation is the most intense is at 9.66 m. Table 1 indicates that

this result belongs to the Infrared wavelength ranking, which goes from 700nm to 1mm.

b) Some types of energy saving lightbulbs still have tungsten filaments but incorporate special coatings on the glass envelope, which reduce transmission of infrared radiation. Such bulbs are usually dull when first switched on and gradually reach their maximum brightness over a short period of time. Explain this change of brightness with time by using the Stefan-Boltzmann Law and Green house effect.

Answering to the question why energy saver lightbulbs are usually dull when first switched on and gradually reach their maximum brightness over a short period time, this is because the coated glass used in this kind of bulbs avoids to get out the radiation of infrared light, which is the light who makes the bulbs surface heat. Nevertheless, this coating makes the glass emissivity lower, so the tungsten filament must warm up first the inside of the bulb, for later reach a higher temperature, hence the maximum bulb brightness. Figure 1 describes how the lightbulb works.

Figure 1. Glass coated energy saving lightbulb.

This is demonstrated next wit he Stefan-Boltzmann Law:

The Black-body radiation Stefan-Boltzmann Law states The rate of the emitted energy increases with temperature, thus according to the formula of a grey body: Sb = x x T 4 (W/m2)

Where is the emissivity: 0 1, which depends on the material and surface finish. And is the Stefan-Boltzmann constant: = 5.67 x 10-8 W m-2 k-4 Next an example is given, If a lightbulb is in a place at a room temperature of 273 K, and then this is turned on, the maximum temperature of work is 373 K. The coefficient of a light bulb is 0.8 (Omega, 2014). With these data, we can calculate the energy radiated when the lightbulb is turned on and after it has reached the maximum working temperature.

Temperature = 273 K Sb = 0.8 x 5.67 x 10-8 W m-2 k-4 x (273 K)4 Sb = 251.95 W/m2

Temperature = 373 K Sb = 0.8 x 5.67 x 10-8 W m-2 k-4 x (373 K)4 Sb = 878.02 W/m2 The results obtained above, demonstrates how the bulb brightness fluctuates with the increasing of temperature.


- Haynes W.(2011). CRC Handbook of Chemestry and Physics (92nd ed). CRC Press. - Omega (2013) Table of emissivity of materials,, access online (01/01/2014)