How Much Helium on Jupiter?

Jupiter has been thought to comprise 90% hydrogen and 10% helium since 1930 due to the detection of spectra of methane and ammonia by Rupert Wildt. His model comprised a solid core of rock and metal surrounded by a layer of ice and a thick gaseous envelope. Based on the elements thought to have been created at the big bang, the composition the gaseous envelope has been proposed to be similar. The Galileo atmospheric probe was designed to measure the mole fraction, used for gases, and the mass fraction of helium, because this was thought to provide information supporting the idea that all hydrogen and helium was created at the big bang, and since it has not, is now claimed to provide information on the way in which planets are formed.

Surprizingly, the instrument designed to determine the mole fraction, called the Helium Abundance Detector (HAD) measured only the index of refraction of samples of atmospheric gases captured in a cell compared with a similar reference cell.  This is stated in the paper published about the measurement   “Helium in Jupiter’s atmosphere: Results from the Galileo probe Helium Interferometer Experiment”, by U. von Zahn, D. M. Hunten and G. Lehmacher.

“Among the seven scientific probe instruments was our HAD instrument. Its approach to measure accurately the Jovian He2 ratio was based on the following considerations: more than 99.5% of the Jovian atmosphere consists of hydrogen and helium. Hence, to a first approximation, we can consider this atmosphere to be a binary gas mixture, for which the mole fraction qHe of helium can be derived from the ratio of refractive indices.”

Note the word “considerations” to disguise its harsher meaning “assumptions”. The instrument was designed based on the assumption that Jupiter is comprised of hydrogen and helium!

An obvious problem with this is apparent in color photographs of Jupiter, which is covered with clouds of various colors, the elements of which they are comprised have never been identified spectroscopically. This means that they are crystalline or dust. If so, they are denser than hydrogen and helium and are falling to the surface as fast as they are produced.

Moreover, cyclic catastrophism claims that the elements comprising them are continuously being released from the Methane Gas Hydrate and that process has continued for thousands of years. The presence of these heavy elements has a major impact on the Helium mole fraction , qHE and the Helium mass fraction Y, below.. The following are the results quoted in the same paper:

“In calculating the HAD results, we presume that the abundance ratio He/H2 is constant throughout the pressure range under study. The value of the measured helium abundance can be expressed numerically in various ways.  These are shown in (7)-(10).

The helium mole fraction qHe, also mixing ratio (equal to the ratio of He atom number density over total atom and molecule number densities), is
qHe = N(He) / (N(H2)+ N(He)+ N(heavy  elements)) = 0.1359 +/- 0.0027   ”

Here we note that the number density of heavy elements at Jupiter is so small that its rigorous inclusion in the calculation of qHe does not affect the value given above. The same cannot be said of the contribution of the mass of heavy elements in calculating Y (see below).

Abundance ratio R of helium (He) relative to hydrogen (H2) (equal to the ratio of He atom number density over H2 molecule number density) is

R = N(He) / N(H2) = 0.157+/- 0 .003

The ratio of helium mass density over the sum of helium and hydrogen mass densities is

m(He) / (m (H2) + m (He)) = 0.238 +/- 0 .005

The helium mass fraction Y (equal to the helium mass densitover the total mass density) is

Y = m (He) /(m ( H2 )+ m ( He ) + m (heavy elements)) = 0.005                 ”


~ by Angiras on September 17, 2018.

%d bloggers like this: