I am thinking of a Ray Bradbury short story set on Venus (as they used to think it might be). It’s a cloud covered swampy world where it rains perpetually. Not just a lot, not just every day, but continuously, 24/7 like a shower turned on forever. My question is, is there any conceivable way a planet could have those conditions? The best bet I can think of would be a planet where the oceans were considerably warmer than the atmosphere (perhaps volcanicly), but I don’t know if you’d get rain or just permanent fog or 100% humidity. Or if you could get just rain and not permanent hurricane-like storms.
Insert Seattle joke here.
Or visit Planet So. Cal., where no rain falls.
Dang, I remember that story too, but not the title. Very sad.
All Summer in a Day is the title of the story.
The Long Rain is another story by Bradbury set on a rainy Venus.
I think I may have screwed up and mistaken Bradbury’s All Summer in a Day for someone else’s story that takes place on Venus where a little girl is locked in a closet when the sun is going to come out for the first time in seven years.
Thanks, raisinbread, I couldn’t remember the story’s name. But it appears in the collection The Illustrated Man, and was adapted as a vignette in the film version, starring Rod Steiger.
You mean an entire world continually covered in rain? I suppose - it’s always snowing on Jupiter - hydrocarbon snow condensing out of methane clouds forever and ever and ever, amen. As long as carbon keeps coming in on debris, the precip wo’t stop.
Perhaps you mean an Earth-type rainy world? I dunno. An Earth-size sphere covered in twenty meters of water would not have rain everywhere - I did a little project in highschool Enviro which had bands of air rising and falling at the equator(rising), 30 degrees(falling), 60 degrees(rising), and the poles(falling). I do not recall the lgoic behind it.
In any case, white clouds are far more reflective than the ground, thus ensuring a cycle of evaporation-clouds-rain-clouds disappear, unrefreshed from fresh evaporation-cycle starts anew. In other words, weather.
For almost-constant rain in PARTICULAR places, set an island in a cold position in the world and direct a stream of warm water at it. Presto - Britain is cloudy 95% of the time, and raining 2/3 of the time.
Right on the second try. I just checked The Illustrated Man’s contents page and “The Long Rain” is the story there about Venus. “All Summer in a Day” is another Bradbury story, which has appeared in about a dozen anthologies.
Well, you could set the surface pressure and temperature to values just above the boiling point of water. Say ~25°C at 7 PSI (Don’t quote me on that, I’m eyeballing off a phase diagram. ) The seas would thus boil with a minimal energy input, and the resultant vapor would precipitate out in the higher and cooler levels of the atmosphere.
Would the water stay at boiling if heat is continually being lost by evaporating the water? And would the atmosphere stay at just above boiling if the heat from condensation were continually being dumped into it?
It just seems to me that the heat of condensation would have to be returned instantly to the sea in order to maintain the postulated conditions.
“All Summer in a Day?” Oh, my God. I cried buckets.
It’d have to get cycled back somehow, and at the same rate it was being lost. But that holds true for evaporation and precipitation on any planet that’s reached a steady-state.
With clouds that limit solar heating , you’d need an internal heat source, or at least a low, wet spot on the surface that’s much warmer than average. Locking the planet’s rotation so that the same side always faces the sun is one way to supply those conditions.
Well sure, but with localized warm and cold places to provide circulation there can be some time delay in the recycling. If it’s raining all over and temperatures are uniform everywhere it seems to me that the atmosphere’s temperature would rise to the point where it wouldn’t rain.
Maybe, greatly simplified, it could be a relaxation oscillator. It would rain and the released heat would raise the temperature which would stop the rain. Then the heat would slowly flow into the seas causing more evaporation so it would start raining, releasing heat into the atmosphere so it would stop raining and so on and so on.