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UNIT 3

READING DEVELOPMENT
1. Read the text
1
and answer the following questions.
a) What happens with the incident radiant energy that is not absorbed by a body?
b) Which factors have to be taken into account to state the Stefan-Boltzman law of
radiation?
c) Why do people sunbathing begin to feel hot?
d) Why do dark-coloured metals differ from other substances in the case of the conduction
of heat energy?

RADIATION
Solar radiation, the radiation emitted by the sun, is the direct source of
all the energy and life on Earth. It drives the atmospheric and oceanic
currents, evaporates the water that later falls as rain and snow, and induces
the plant photosynthesis that provide food, fibre, and fuel.
This energy is brought to Earth by large amounts of visible light waves,
as well as by considerable amounts of infrared and ultraviolet waves, all of
which belong to the so-called electromagnetic waves, as they necessarily
have an electric and a magnetic component. They propagate through the
empty space during their journey to Earth with the same velocity, c, equal to
299,742,456 Km/sec, or 3 × 10
8
m/sec for most calculations. The
electromagnetic spectrum also includes the microwaves used for cooking, the
radio waves used for AM and FM broadcasts, the x-rays used as diagnosis in
hospitals and as a means of police-control in airports, and the gamma-rays.
All these waves differ in the wavelength and the frequency of the radiation.






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Electromagnetic waves carry heat energy as familiar experiences prove.
When you are in the sun or next to a fire or an electric stove, you feel hot
because your body absorbs energy from the electromagnetic waves emitted
by them.
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1
John D. Cutnell & Kenneth W. Johnson. 1989. Physics. New York: John Wiley & Sons.
Frank P. Incropera & David P. DeWitt. 1996. Fundamentals of Heat and Mass Transfer. New York:
John Wiley & Sons.
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The transfer of energy via electromagnetic waves is called thermal or
electromagnetic radiation and, unlike the processes of convection or
conduction, it requires no material medium for propagation. Therefore,
radiant exchange between surfaces is, in fact, a maximum when no material
occupies the intervening space.
All bodies, whether hot or cold, continuously radiate energy in the
form of electromagnetic waves. Even an ice cube radiates energy, although
so little in the form of visible light that it cannot be seen in the dark.
Likewise, the human body emits insufficient visible light to be seen in the
dark but it can be detected by electronic cameras that record the infrared
waves radiating from it. Generally, an object does not emit an appreciable
amount of visible light until its temperature becomes greater than about 1000
K, and then a characteristic red glow appears, like that of a heating coil on an
electric stove. It is not until its temperature reaches about 1700 K that an
object glows white-hot, like the tungsten filament in an incandescent light
bulb.

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In the transfer of energy by radiation, the absorption
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of
electromagnetic waves is just as important as the emission, depending the
former on the surface of the object. Suppose that we have two similar blocks
that differ in their outer surface: one is rough and coated with a lampblack (a
fine black soot or carbon) and the other is silvered and highly polished. If a
thermometer is inserted into each of them, the temperature of the black block
is found to rise at a much faster rate than that of the silver block. The rapid
temperature rise of the black block can be explained by the fact that
lampblack absorbs about 97% of the incident radiant energy, while the silver
surface absorbs only about 10%. The remaining part of the incident energy is
reflected in each case. In fact, we see the lampblack is black in colour
because so little of the light that falls on it is reflected. In contrast, the silvery
surface looks like a mirror because it reflects so much light. Since the colour
black is associated with nearly complete absorption of visible light, the term
perfect blackbody or, simply, blackbody is used when referring to an object
that absorbs all the electromagnetic waves falling upon it. As it reflects no
light, it would appear black to an observer. A perfectly emitting or absorbing

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2
When solar radiation enters the Earth's atmosphere, it is partially absorbed and partially reflected,
largely by cloud, snowfields, and deserts. The fraction reflected, called the albedo, is variously
estimated at 28 to 35 percent for the Earth as a whole. Absorption is by ozone in the stratosphere, by
carbon dioxide, water vapour, clouds, and dust in the troposphere, and by the Earth's surface. Thus,
solar radiation is absorbed primarily by water in the atmosphere, on the surface, and in plants
and nearly half of its energy (a quarter of the total reaching the uppermost level of the atmosphere)
goes to evaporate water.

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body is designated a black body although no perfect blackbody exists in
nature.


All objects can emit and absorb electromagnetic waves. Actually, they
do both simultaneously. Moreover, when a body has the same constant
temperature as its surroundings, the amount of radiant energy absorbed must
balance the amount of energy emitted in a given interval of time. If the
absorption were greater than emission, the body would experience a net
energy gain, and subsequently a temperature rise. Conversely, if the emission
were greater than the absorption, the temperature would fall. Consequently, a
material that is a good absorber, like a lampblack, is also a good emitter,
and a material that is a poor absorber, like polished silver, is also a poor
emitter. A perfect blackbody, being a perfect absorber, is also a good emitter.


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The fact that a black surface is both a good absorber and a good
emitter is the reason why we do not feel comfortable wearing dark clothes
during the summer. Dark clothes absorb a large fraction of the sun’s radiation
and then reemit it in all directions. About one-half of the emitted radiation is
directed inward toward the body and creates the sensation of warmth. Light-
coloured clothes, on the other hand, are cooler to wear, since they absorb
relatively little of the incident radiation.
The amount of radiant energy Q emitted by a perfect blackbody
depends on several factors: radiation time interval t (measured in seconds),
emitting surface area A (measured in m
2
), Kelvin temperature T.
1. Q ∝ t. The longer the time, the greater the amount of energy
radiated.


2. Q ∝ A. An object with a large surface area radiates more energy
than one with a small surface area, other things being equal.
3. Q ∝ T
4
. This strong temperature dependence indicates that the
emitted energy increases markedly with increasing temperature. If,
for example, the Kelvin temperature of an object doubles, the
object emits 2
4
or 16 times more energy. This fact was discovered
experimentally by Josef Stefan in 1879 and five years later was
confirmed from theoretical considerations by Ludwig Boltzmann.
Combining these factors into a single proportionality, we have

Q ∝ T
4
At
which, in turn, can be converted into an equation by inserting a
proportionality constant, σ, as
Q = σ T
4
At
σ, named Stefan-Boltzmann constant after its discoverers, was
experimentally found to be equal to 5.67 × 10
-8
W/ m
2
⋅ K
4
. Also after them,


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the law is known as Stefan-Boltzmann rate equation or Stefan-Boltzmann law
of thermal radiation.
However, the equation above holds only for a perfect emitter, so a
relative factor, called emissivity, is included to make it valid for all objects.
Therefore, we have
Q = eσ T
4
At

Emissivity, e, indicates the ratio of energy an object actually radiates to
the energy the object would radiate if it were a perfect emitter. The values of
emissivity range between 1 (for a perfect blackbody) and 0. For instance, a
light-coloured human body and a dark-coloured human body radiate, only
65% and 80%, respectively, of the visible light energy that a perfect emitter
would radiate, so their emissivity would be 0.65 and 0.80. In the foregoing
equation, σ is a universal constant with the same value for all bodies,
regardless of the nature of their surfaces, whereas e, however, depends on the
condition of the surface.
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2. Scan-read the text again, and tick T (true) or F (false). T F
a) A black surface is a poor absorber, so it is a poor emitter.
b) A material that is a good absorber may be, however, a poor emitter.
c) An object with a small surface area radiates more energy than one with a
larger surface area.


d) Electromagnetic waves carry energy.
e) If the emission were greater than the absorption, the temperature of the
block would rise.


f) Infrared and ultraviolet waves are both electromagnetic waves.
g) Objects coated with lampblack reflects more energy than they absorb.
h) Q is inversely proportional to the radiation time interval.
i) Radiation does not need a material medium.
j) The emissivity e varies according to the condition of the surface.
k) The emissivity is always a value greater than 1.
l) The emitted energy decreases with increasing temperature.
m) The transfer of energy by electromagnetic waves is called radiation.
n) The Stefan-Boltzmann constant σ has the same value for all bodies, despite
the nature of their surfaces.


o) Unlike the sun, fires and light bulbs do not emit electromagnetic waves.
p) We are more comfortable wearing light clothes in summer.
3. Rewrite the false statements to make them true.

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4. Complete the following diagram according to the text.






















5. Provide the terms that the following words refer to.
it (2)
of which (6)
they (6)
their (8)
these (14)
you (16)
them (18)
it (26)
its (30)
former (36)
other (38)
them (39)

SOLAR RADIATION:
__________________

By means of ...

Thermal / electromagnetic
radiation

Example 2

?

?
both
A perfect blackbody
____________________

Example 1
36 READING & WRITING ENGLISH FOR ENGINEERING

VOCABULARY DEVELOPMENT
6. Find synonyms or similar expressions in the text.
Always ................... [20-25]; at the same time ................... [50-55]; combustible
................... [1-5]; comprises ................... [10-15]; covered with ................... [35-40];
despite ................... [95-100]; emissions ................... [10-15]; in general ................... [ 25-
30]; needs ...................... [20-25]; origin ................... [1-5]; part ................... [5-10];
quantities ................... [1-5]; referred to as ................... [50-55]; same way ...................
[25-30]; seem ................... [50-55]; significant................... [30-35]; speed ................... [40-
45]; transport ................... [15-20].
7. Match the antonyms choosing one from A and one from B.
A: Absorb, absorption, as with, cold, comfortable, fast, invisible, inward, light, like, on the
contrary, one-half, play, rough, similar, sufficient, variable.
B: Constant, dark, different, double, emission, emit, hot, in contrast, insufficient, like,
likewise, outward, polished, record, slow, uncomfortable, unlike, visible.
8. Name the terms/items defined or described below.
a) They comprise visible light waves along with infrared and ultraviolet waves. →
b) The process in which energy is transferred by electromagnetic waves. →
c) The ratio of the energy an object actually radiates to the energy the object would radiate
if it were a perfect emitter. →
d) The object that absorbs all the electromagnetic waves falling on it. →
e) A fine black soot. →
9. Word-formation & phrases.
a) Prefixation: infra-, micro-, re-, ultra-: infrared; microwave; reemit; ultraviolet.
b) Suffixation:
♦ NOUN/VERB + -ity → NOUN: emissivity, proportionality.
♦ NOUN/ADJECTIVE + -less → ADJECTIVE: dimensionless.
♦ ADJECTIVE + -th → NOUN: warmth.
♦ ADJECTIVE / NOUN + -ly → ADVERB: consequently, continuously, conversely,
experimentally, relatively, respectively, simply, simultaneously.
c) Composition: black body, broadcast, dark-coloured human body, electromagnetic,
lampblack, lampblack-coated block, light-bulb, light-coloured human body, silver-coated
block, sunbathers, red glow, white-hot.
d) Phrases: as well as, depending on, in contrast, in fact, 16 times, regardless of, so-called,
to the fourth power of, when referring to.

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10. Word-formation exercises.
a) Prefixes.
Comfortable →
Compose →
Magnetism →
Match →
Possible →

Red →
Satisfactory →
Sonic →
Specified →
Sufficient →

Transmission →
Valid →
Volatile →
Violet →
Zero →
b) Suffixes.
Absorb → (n)
Compare → (a)
Comfort → (a)
Condition → (a)
Consider → (a)
Depend → (a)
Distribute → (n)
Emissive → (n)
Emit → (n) )
Energy → (a)
Equal → (n)
Exist → (n)
Experiment → (a)
Inverse → (adv)
Object → (a)
Propagate → (n)
Radiate → (n)
Real → (n)
Reflect → (v)
Valid → (n)
Value → (a)
c) Compounds.
Black →
Fire →
Light →
Magnetic →
Magnetism →
Police →
Ray →
Red →
Synthesis →
Wave →
White →
11. Half-cloze. Choose the appropriate word from the list below.
A, ability, about, absorb, an, any, blackbody, by, called, coated, each, for, has, it,
maximum, minimum, of, on, perfect, power, scientists, some, the, theoretically, to, will,
would.
A blackbody is an object that absorbs all the radiation incident upon it. As it reflects
no light, it ....................... appear black to an observer. No ....................... blackbody
exists in nature, but ....................... surfaces with carbon black or soot ....................... 97
percent of incident energy.
A ....................... is also a perfect emitter as ....................... has both an
absorptivity and emissivity ....................... 1. However, it has no reflecting .......................
At ....................... specified temperature, a blackbody emits, in .......................
part of the electromagnetic spectrum, the ....................... energy obtainable from any
radiator because ....................... its temperature alone. Such emitted energy .......................
characteristic energy distribution properties and is ....................... blackbody radiation.
Comparison of radiation emitted ....................... real objects with that of a .......................
ideal blackbody can give information about ....................... thermodynamic properties of
materials. Also, the ....................... to accurately explain blackbody radiation enables
....................... test the validity of physical laws.
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12. Re-arrange the following sentences so as to form a coherent paragraph.
All objects can emit and absorb electromagnetic waves.
Consequently, a material that is a good absorber, like a lampblack is also a good emitter,
and a material that is a poor absorber, like polished silver, is also a good emitter.
Conversely, if the emission were greater than the absorption, the temperature would fall.
If the absorption were greater than emission, the body would experience a net energy
gain, and subsequently a temperature rise.
Moreover, when a body has the same constant temperature as its surroundings, the
amount of radiant energy absorbed must balance the amount of energy emitted in a given
interval of time.