Hi everyone,

Here is a calculation I've been wanting to do for some time now. The question I want to ask is, taking all the water vapor in the atmosphere and the water in the polar caps, would this be enough to cover the earth?

Here it goes;

The mass of water vapor in the atmosphere is

m<sub>atmos</sub> = 1.27 x 10<sup>16</sup> kg (from Wiki).

The northern polar cap has a surface area of ~ 9 - 12 million km<sup>2</sup> while the southern cap is ~ 14 million km<sup>2</sup>. So, using the southern cap figures and multiplying by 2 should be a good (over-) estimate of the water contained in the caps. The southern cap has roughly 3.0 x 10<sup>16</sup> m<sup>3</sup> of ice. This corresponds to about m<sub>caps</sub> = 5.5 x 10<sup>19</sup> kg using the density of ice as 0.917 kg/m<sup>3</sup> and mass = density*Volume. (Again, from Wiki.)

To find out the depth that the water would be if spread out over the earth, we use the formula (I encourage the reader to derive this for themselves...)

depth = [(3*m/4*pi*rho) + (R<sub>E</sub>)<sup>3</sup>]<sup>1/3</sup> - R<sub>E</sub>

where

R<sub>E</sub> = Earth's radius = 6.378 x 10<sup>6</sup> m,

rho = density of water = 1.00 x 10<sup>3</sup> kg/m<sup>3</sup>,

m = mass = 1.27 x 10<sup>16</sup> kg for atmospheric water and

m = 5.5 x 10<sup>19</sup> kg for polar cap water.

For the atmospheric water alone we get

depth = 0.0248 m = 2.48 cm.

This assumes thatallthe water vapor is taken out of the atmosphere and spread out over the entire earth. (One may wonder about rainfall that is greater than 3 cm and is not that uncommon. But keep in mind that those cases arelocalevents and not global.)

For the polar caps alone, we get

depth = 107.6 m.

As you can see, the atmospheric water is negligable compared to the polar caps, but adding them together we get

depth = 107.625 m ~ 108 m.

I should say, that I have no idea if the water vapor in the atmosphere has changed over time, but it would have to be considerably higher to affect the result - so high in fact, that any human alive at that time would probably drown just by breathing the air....

So...ifwe could extractallthe water from the atmosphere andentirelymelt the polar ice caps, the depth of the flood waters would be roughly 108 meters. I should add that the ice cap figure assumes thatnoneof the ice is submerged. (We know that much of itissubmerged, which, when the submerged ice melts, it would tend tolowerthe sea level since ice is less dense (higher volume) than water.)

So the depth = 108 meters is actually anupperlimit.

Anyway, the upshot, is that any land higher than 108 m above sea level should remain dry. I'm not sure about the percentage of the earth that is above 108 m but I would suspect that it is substantial compared with the percentage of dry land above current sea level (I welcome anyone to find this percentage. I would like to know the figure myself...).

So... unless I overlooked something, or just plain goofed up, well... there you have it.

Cheers,

william

P.S. This is in no way meant to denegrate religions that teach about the flood. Ionlyclaim that it was not global based on the above calculation. Perhaps I'm wrong....