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#1
11-15-2004, 11:00 PM
 The Flying Dutchman Guest Join Date: Nov 2000 Location: 50N West Georgia Strait Posts: 8,596
Rate of Precipitation during Noah's Flood

How many inches per hour of global rainfall for 40 days and nights would it take to cover :

1. Mt Ararat

2. Mt Everest

You may ignore tidal considerations
#2
11-15-2004, 11:19 PM
 ultrafilter Guest Join Date: May 2001 Location: In another castle Posts: 18,988
Mt. Everest is roughly 36,000 feet above sea level, so how much rain would it take to cover it in 40 24-hour periods?

That's 1500 fet per day, and at 12 inches per foot and 1440 minutes per day, that's 12.5 inches per minute.

I sure hope they can swim.
#3
11-15-2004, 11:20 PM
 CalMeacham Member Join Date: May 2000 Location: Massachusetts Posts: 41,542
John Allen Paulus gives this calculation in his book Innumeracy. I can't recall the exact figures right now, but it was given in feet per hour (something like eight feet per hour), "....enough to sink an aircraft carrier..." noted Paulos.
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#4
11-15-2004, 11:20 PM
 electronbee Guest Join Date: Apr 2003 Posts: 697
Man...

And, to think my friends in college thought I had lost it when I calculated the volume of water required to one foot over present day Mt. Everest. I believe it was roughly 30 times the known volume of water in the air, oceans, lakes, streams, and underground water.

However, I have lost these calculations. But! I will perform them again! And then determin rate of rainfall. Actually, now that I think about it, I did take the volume of water and devide it by the amount of hours in 40 days. It was a rather high number. Since, when you think about it, you are almost doing the volume of water PER day. Almost.

I'll shall see!!!
#5
11-16-2004, 12:02 AM
 electronbee Guest Join Date: Apr 2003 Posts: 697
Ok

I have done some rough calculations to get us all started... but, I am going to have to figure out how we currently measure rainfall. Yes, we have inches per hour and feet per hour, but, that is only a height measurement. I need all 3 dimensions to be exact. I'll look at that tomorrow, but, this is what I have right now:

volume of water on earth:
http://ga.water.usgs.gov/edu/earthwherewater.html

circumference of earth:

everest:

radius of earth plus everest: 4626.56
current volume of Earth planetoid: 413345707226.1828
volume 1 foot over everest: 414823360582.3245
volume of water required to fill between current Earth planetoid circumference to height of mt everest: 1477653356.1417 cubic miles
times current amount of water on earth (326,000,000 cubic miles): 4.5
hours in 40 days: 960
cubic miles of water every hour: 1539222.2459809375
cubic inches per cubic mile: 254358061056000
cubic inches per hour: 391513586021972751237.12

I found out I remembered what I calculated in college was wrong. Only 4.5 times the current known volume of wate ron earth. Not 30. However, I went to college some time ago and I think my current information gathering is more accurate. Any ways, as soon as we know what the actual feet/inches per hour rainfall equates to in volume, we can get it.

But, as you can see my the numbers, unless I goofed (which is possible), that is a LOT of water. Damn.

eb
#6
11-16-2004, 01:54 AM
 Voyager Member Join Date: Aug 2002 Location: Deep Space Posts: 41,495
But they'd be broiled alive before they drowned. As an exercise for the reader, compute the potential energy released from that much water stored at least a bunch of miles high falling to the earth.

Some creationist claim that there were no mountains before the flood, and that they grew during the flood, which would make things somewhat easier. Of course the Bible does not say that, and Noah didn't seem surprised at landing on a mountain.
#7
11-16-2004, 02:08 AM
 Blake Member Join Date: Mar 2001 Posts: 11,049
In fairness to the YECs, and there’s no real reason to be except for the mental exercise, the Bible doesn’t say that all or even most of the water came from rain.

I realise this doesn’t address the OP but it’s worth noting consideration the turn the thread has taken.
#8
11-16-2004, 02:10 AM
 cornflakes Charter Member Join Date: Aug 1999 Location: Bubbaville Posts: 4,726
I think that divinding Everest's height in inches by 40 days worth of hours would give us a close enough approximation for the rate of rainfall. There are a lot of variables, but they should be relatively insignificant. Besides, Everest is growing, and we don't know how big it was at the time of the great flood. Currently it is 29,035 feet tall, meaning it would need to rain at 362.9375 inches per hour before the mountain was covered.

That said, to do it the long way (electronbee, I hope you don't mind my using some of your work)...

radius of earth plus everest: 4626.56

current volume of Earth planetoid: 413345707226.1828
volume 1 foot over everest: 414823360582.3245
volume of water required to fill between current Earth planetoid circumference to height of mt everest: 1477653356.1417 cubic miles

Surface of Earth: 268344735 sq mi
Surface of water over Everest: 268983885 sq mi
Midpoint surface area (just because I'm lazy): 268664310 sq mi

Now, volume divided by surface area will be the depth, right? So...
(1477653356.1417 cubic miles / 268664310 sq mi) = 5.4999987015085851931728483027761 miles, or 348479.9 inches

We would need a steady rain of:
348479.9 inches over 960 hours, or 362.9998958333 inches per hour, which is close enough to the first approximation.
#9
11-16-2004, 02:19 AM
 dqa Guest Join Date: Sep 1999 Posts: 964
Quote:
 Originally Posted by Voyager But they'd be broiled alive before they drowned. As an exercise for the reader, compute the potential energy released from that much water stored at least a bunch of miles high falling to the earth.
My physics is very rusty, but I would be interested in how much potential energy would be released, and what is the normal height of rain clouds, and what is the normal temperature of the water at that height.

And it seems fair to give the benefit of the doubt that ambient surface air temperature might be fairly cool, around 40 F or 5 C or whatever makes the calculations easy.
#10
11-16-2004, 04:29 AM
 Roches Guest Join Date: Aug 2003 Posts: 987
Perhaps some consideration of Hebrew cosmology should be made to understand why the authors of Genesis considered the Flood possible. Above the flat earth there was a dome, called the firmament, to which the stars were attached and within which the sun and moon moved about. Above the firmament are the waters mentioned in Genesis 1:2 ('the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters'). This structure is also mentioned in Genesis 1:6-7. The firmament is perforated by 'the floodgates of heaven' (Genesis 7:11, 8:2). The Flood is caused by these floodgates being opened, and a rising-up of the waters beneath the earth (Genesis 1:6-7 and 7:11 again). This cosmology suggests that there is a very large amount of water available outside the firmament and beneath the Earth for use in the flood. In this cosmology, it is not hard to imagine how rainfall on the order of 800 cm/hour would be possible.

Unfortunately, the Hebrew mythology is not consistent with empirical observation. Creationists and flood catastrophists thus must resort to 'vapor canopies' and similar theories which are not really supported by a literal reading of the Bible (and I haven't yet seen any flood theories that take the 'springs of the great deep' into account). So far, flood scenarios require that at least some of Genesis be considered figurative.
#11
11-16-2004, 05:59 AM
 mmmiiikkkeee Guest Join Date: Feb 2001 Posts: 1,476
So once the ground was saturated and no place left for the water to flow down to, you'd be covered by 6 feet of water within 12 minutes. Has it ever rained that heavily on Earth even in a small area in recorded history?
#12
11-16-2004, 09:20 AM
 Patty O'Furniture Guest Join Date: May 1999 Location: Bangkok/52/Male Posts: 8,869
Quote:
 Originally Posted by CalMeacham John Allen Paulus gives this calculation in his book Innumeracy. I can't recall the exact figures right now, but it was given in feet per hour (something like eight feet per hour), "....enough to sink an aircraft carrier..." noted Paulos.
I have the book right here at my desk.

Quoth Paulos:

Quote:
 The book of genesis says of the flood that "... all the high hills that were under the whole heaven were covered..." Taken literally, this seems to indicate that there were 10 to 20 thousand feet of water on the surface of the Earth, equivalent to more than half a billion cubic miles of liquid! Since, according to biblical accounts, it rained for forty days and forty nights, or for only 960 hours, the rain must have fallen at a rate of at least fifteen feet per hour, certainly enough to sink any aircraft carrier, much less an ark with thousands of animals on board.
#13
11-16-2004, 09:45 AM
 Steve MB Charter Member Join Date: Mar 2002 Location: Northern VA Posts: 11,892
Quote:
 Originally Posted by CalMeacham John Allen Paulus gives this calculation in his book Innumeracy. I can't recall the exact figures right now, but it was given in feet per hour (something like eight feet per hour), "....enough to sink an aircraft carrier..." noted Paulos.
A similar calculation was done by Ingersoll in Some Mistakes of Moses, IIRC.
#14
11-16-2004, 09:54 AM
 Cabbage Guest Join Date: Sep 1999 Location: Radford, VA Posts: 2,386
Quote:
 Originally Posted by mmmiiikkkeee So once the ground was saturated and no place left for the water to flow down to, you'd be covered by 6 feet of water within 12 minutes. Has it ever rained that heavily on Earth even in a small area in recorded history?
I'd say it's impossible. The most intense rains I've ever heard of are nowhere close. Here's one intense rain:
Quote:
 ...62.7 mm (2.48 in) in over a 5-minute period at Portobelo, Panama
http://au.encarta.msn.com/encycloped...4737/Rain.html

I also have a memory of reading in Guiness of an incident where it rained about two inches in one minute, but I can't seem to find any online reference to it, for what it's worth.

Both of these are pretty damned impressive in my opinion, but neither comes even close to the rates being talked about here.
#15
11-16-2004, 10:28 AM
 dqa Guest Join Date: Sep 1999 Posts: 964
Quote:
 Originally Posted by Cabbage I also have a memory of reading in Guiness of an incident where it rained about two inches in one minute, but I can't seem to find any online reference to it, for what it's worth. Both of these are pretty damned impressive in my opinion, but neither comes even close to the rates being talked about here.
2" in one minute comes to 120" or 10 feet per hour, if it continued at that rate. So as far fetched as it is, the rate cited by Paulus of 15 feet per hour is only 50% more than that.
#16
11-16-2004, 11:17 AM
 Bryan Ekers Guest Join Date: Nov 2000 Location: Montreal, QC Posts: 55,937
Quote:
 Originally Posted by mmmiiikkkeee So once the ground was saturated and no place left for the water to flow down to, you'd be covered by 6 feet of water within 12 minutes. Has it ever rained that heavily on Earth even in a small area in recorded history?
On Jennifer Beals, once.
#17
11-16-2004, 12:12 PM
 bup Guest Join Date: Sep 1999 Location: glenview,il,usa Posts: 11,905
What was she wearing?
#18
11-16-2004, 12:12 PM
 Yllaria Charter Member Join Date: Nov 2001 Location: Stockton Posts: 9,966
If we were going to do a comparison calculation with Hebrew cosmology, what would the area of the flat earth be and what would be the tallest mountain that needed to be covered? I'm guessing that they had never heard of Everest.
#19
11-16-2004, 02:53 PM
 AHunter3 Charter Member Join Date: Mar 1999 Location: NY (Manhattan) NY USA Posts: 19,050
Be aware that the Noah story in Genesis as we know it is actually two stories interwoven with each other.

One story (J) describes a flood of 40 days' duration. This was described more or less as normal rain, except in large quantities.

The other story (P) describes a flood that took 150 to subside, in which the waters that were thought to be perpetually up above the air (above the "firmament") were loosed and poured down until the whole earth was underwater. Mountaintops were not seen again until the 10th month after the beginning of the flood.

If I were going to have the mountaintops underwater, I'd definitely go with the second scenario.
#20
11-16-2004, 03:42 PM
 electronbee Guest Join Date: Apr 2003 Posts: 697
Would this down pour sink an aircraft carrier?

That's something else I am wondering, and, why are people comparing an aircraft carrier to Noah's Ark? Are they to be of the supposed same size?

Any ways, being in the USN for a short time now, I know that ships are mostly water tight. Very few windows, if any, and, all carry a good amount if water in their ballast tanks. Also, keep in mind that the CVN's (nuclear powered aircraft carriers) hold 5000 or so people, food, supplies, a bunch of airplanes, fuel, and munitions. Which is a lot to carry around. So, dump everything but food, people, neccesary suplies, and fuel. Empty the tanks some (if required) we still have some serious bouyancy here.

How much downward force, assuming terminal velocity of the rain, would be exterted on the flight deck of the carrier? I *THINK* the area of teh flight deck is like 4 acres or so.

Also, one last thought, could this downpour actually be a rain? Or, just a contant flow of water from clouds to ground?

eb
#21
11-16-2004, 04:36 PM
 Voyager Member Join Date: Aug 2002 Location: Deep Space Posts: 41,495
Here is a link to the talk.origins page describing some of the issues of the supposed Flood, many of which would boil off the atmosphere.
#22
11-16-2004, 04:55 PM
 Cervaise Guest Join Date: Mar 1999 Location: underpants Posts: 19,743
With God, all things are possible. So it could have appeared as nothing more than a gentle rain, not even a torrent but just your average April afternoon, except that as each raindrop hit the ground it magically expanded into a volume of water equal to Lake Titicaca. Bam!
#23
11-16-2004, 05:03 PM
 Exapno Mapcase Charter Member Join Date: Mar 2002 Location: NY but not NYC Posts: 29,311
Quote:
 "Alice laughed: "There's no use trying," she said; "one can't believe impossible things." "I daresay you haven't had much practice," said the Queen. "When I was younger, I always did it for half an hour a day. Why, sometimes I've believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast."
Lewis Carroll, Alice in Wonderland.
#24
11-16-2004, 05:13 PM
 kniz Guest Join Date: Mar 2001 Location: Pratts, Mississippi Posts: 6,246
Quote:
 there is an upper limit, in the region of 300 feet, on the length of a wooden ship. Beyond this a wooden ship is subjected to great stress and the hull cannot be maintained watertight. Another real-world problem for those believing this story is meteorology. Genesis 7:19-20 state that all earth was covered by 15 cubits (approximately 25 feet) of water. In order to cover Mt. Everest by 25 feet--over 29,000 feet above sea level--over a span of 10 months (Gen. 8:5)-- it would have had to rain an average of 6 inches per minute for the entire time. The record for rainfall for any one-minute at any one location is 1.5 inches. Also, if all that vapor was in the air before the rain started, the air pressure at sea level would be an astounding 13,000 psi instead of the normal 14.5 psi. In the literature of ancient Egypt, the most powerful and most advanced nation in the world at the alleged time of the Great Flood, there is no mention of a catastrophic flood of world wide proportions. If such a flood had occurred, all of the Egyptians would have been drowned. That obviously didn't happen.
#25
11-16-2004, 07:31 PM
 kanicbird Guest Join Date: May 1999 Posts: 18,364
Quote:
 Any ways, being in the USN for a short time now, I know that ships are mostly water tight. Very few windows, if any, and, all carry a good amount if water in their ballast tanks. Also, keep in mind that the CVN's (nuclear powered aircraft carriers) hold 5000 or so people...
Against God???
#26
11-16-2004, 10:00 PM
 Odinoneeye Guest Join Date: Apr 2003 Location: The other side of Bifrost Posts: 2,947
Quote:
 In the literature of ancient Egypt, the most powerful and most advanced nation in the world at the alleged time of the Great Flood, there is no mention of a catastrophic flood of world wide proportions. If such a flood had occurred, all of the Egyptians would have been drowned. That obviously didn't happen.
But wasn't the flood supposed to be before there were Egyptians? I thought after the flood was the tower of Babel, and because of the different languages after that event, people spread around the world.

Of course, I'm about as far from being a biblical scholar as you can get without actually being a Christian.
#27
11-16-2004, 11:05 PM
 kniz Guest Join Date: Mar 2001 Location: Pratts, Mississippi Posts: 6,246
Quote:
 Originally Posted by Odinoneeye But wasn't the flood supposed to be before there were Egyptians? I thought after the flood was the tower of Babel, and because of the different languages after that event, people spread around the world.
This is something I've never seen before but it isn't hard to figure out. Abraham left Ur with his sheep, camels, wives, etc. and went to the Promised Land. Then Joseph went to Egypt and the family followed. Bible scholars have set a certain period of time that this happened after the flood. Present day scholars have some idea of which pharaohs Joseph might have served under. They also know how many years the Egyptian civilization had been around before those particular Pharohs. So now we have figures of how long it was from the flood to Joseph and how long Egypt had been around before the pharaohs that might have been involved. It doesn't seem unreasonable to me that the Egyptians had been around longer. When the Bible was written they didn't know or care about Egypt's history.
#28
11-16-2004, 11:07 PM
 electronbee Guest Join Date: Apr 2003 Posts: 697
Well...

Since we are talking about when the flood happened, I don't know if anyone saw this particular NOVA/Discovery/National Geo/I can't remember episode. BUT, the great flood is believed to be a story from eons and eons go. And, it actually pertained to the Aegean Sea or Adriatic Sea formation. Basically, there was a huge earth berm seperating the Med from either of those two seas and it gradually broke down and flooded the entire area. Of course, as you can imagine, this would in fact be a great flood.

And, to prove it, these scientists (or whoever) actually went underwater and examined the ground and saw the fractures in the ground and telltale erosion that could only occur from such a thing.
#29
11-17-2004, 12:33 AM
 bup Guest Join Date: Sep 1999 Location: glenview,il,usa Posts: 11,905
Quote:
 Originally Posted by kniz So now we have figures of how long it was from the flood to Joseph and how long Egypt had been around before the pharaohs that might have been involved. It doesn't seem unreasonable to me that the Egyptians had been around longer.
Except that the flood was supposed to have killed off everyone on earth save Noah and his immediate family.
#30
11-17-2004, 03:07 AM
 Voyager Member Join Date: Aug 2002 Location: Deep Space Posts: 41,495
Quote:
 Originally Posted by bup Except that the flood was supposed to have killed off everyone on earth save Noah and his immediate family.
Which is a bit of a problem with the flood story. In the Metropolitan Museum of Art in NY you can see Chinese pottery extending back, with clear stylistic similarities, long before the flood was supposed to happen. So perhaps there were people there who were living in China before the flood and got replaced by Noah's descendents, but it is quite odd that they would pick up the art where it left off.

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