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Now showing 1 - 10 of 19
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    A case study of a sporadic sodium layer observed by the ALOMAR Weber Na lidar
    (München : European Geopyhsical Union, 2008) Nesse, H.; Heinrich, D.; Williams, B.; Hoppe, U.-P.; Stadsnes, J.; Rietveld, M.; Singer, W.; Blum, U.; Sandanger, M.I.; Trondsen, E.
    Simultaneous measurements of temperature and polar mesosphere summer echoes (PMSE) were performed at the polar cap (78° N) during summer 2001 and 2003. In summer time the mesopause region is characterized by extremely low temperatures around 120 K. It is remarkable that PMSE are practically never observed above 92 km although temperatures are low enough to allow the existence of ice particles. In this case study we compare the PMSE topside with temperatures measured by the potassium lidar and with frost point temperatures using water-vapor mixing ratios from models. We find striking discrepancies with our current understanding of ice particles and temperature in this region. In this case study we find that the temperature can be more than 20 K lower than the frost point temperature but no PMSE is observed above 92 km altitude. We show that the lack of PMSE does not necessarily imply that the temperature is too high.
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    Turbulent energy dissipation rates observed by Doppler MST Radar and by rocket-borne instruments during the MIDAS/MaCWAVE campaign 2002
    (Göttingen : Copernicus GmbH, 2005) Engler, N.; Latteck, R.; Strelnikov, B.; Singer, W.; Rapp, M.
    During the MIDAS/MaCWAVE campaign in summer 2002 we have observed turbulence using Doppler beam steering measurements obtained from the ALWIN VHF radar at Andøya/Northern Norway. This radar was operated in the Doppler beam steering mode for turbulence investigations during the campaign, as well as in spaced antenna mode, for continuously measuring the background wind field. The real-time data analysis of the Doppler radar backscattering provided the launch conditions for the sounding rockets. The spectral width data observed during the occurrence of PMSE were corrected for beam and shear broadening caused by the background wind field to obtain the turbulent part of the spectral width. The turbulent energy dissipation rates determined from the turbulent spectral width vary between 5 and 100 m Wkg-1 in the altitude range of 80-92 km and increase with altitude. These estimations agree well with the in-situ measurements using the CONE sensor which was launched on 3 sounding rockets during the campaign.
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    The thermal and dynamical state of the atmosphere during polar mesosphere winter echoes
    (München : European Geopyhsical Union, 2006) Lübken, F.-J.; Strelnikov, B.; Rapp, M.; Singer, W.; Latteck, R.; Brattli, A.; Hoppe, U.-P.; Friedrich, M.
    In January 2005, a total of 18 rockets were launched from the Andøya Rocket Range in Northern Norway (69° N) into strong VHF radar echoes called "Polar Mesosphere Winter Echoes" (PMWE). The echoes were observed in the lower and middle mesosphere during large solar proton fluxes. In general, PMWE occur much more seldom compared to their summer counterparts PMSE (typical occurrence rates at 69° N are 1–3% vs. 80%, respectively). Our in-situ measurements by falling sphere, chaff, and instrumented payloads provide detailed information about the thermal and dynamical state of the atmosphere and therefore allow an unprecedented study of the background atmosphere during PMWE. There are a number of independent observations indicating that neutral air turbulence has caused PMWE. Ion density fluctuations show a turbulence spectrum within PMWE and no fluctuations outside. Temperature lapse rates close to the adiabatic gradient are observed in the vicinity of PMWE indicating persistent turbulent mixing. The spectral broadening of radar echoes is consistent with turbulent velocity fluctuations. Turbulence also explains the mean occurrence height of PMWE (~68–75 km): viscosity increases rapidly with altitude and destroys any small scale fluctuations in the upper mesosphere, whereas electron densities are usually too low in the lower mesosphere to cause significant backscatter. The seasonal variation of echoes in the lower mesosphere is in agreement with a turbulence climatology derived from earlier sounding rocket flights. We have performed model calculations to study the radar backscatter from plasma fluctuations caused by neutral air turbulence. We find that volume reflectivities observed during PMWE are in quantitative agreement with theory. Apart from turbulence the most crucial requirement for PMWE is a sufficiently large number of electrons, for example produced by solar proton events. We have studied the sensitivity of the radar echo strength on various parameters, most important electron number density and turbulence intensity. Our observational and theoretical considerations do not provide any evidence that charged aerosol particles are needed to explain PMWE, in contrast to the summer echoes which owe their existence to charged ice particles.
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    Mesopause dynamics from the Scandinavian triangle of radars within the PSMOS-DATAR project
    (München : European Geopyhsical Union, 2004) Manson, A.H.; Meek, C.E.; Hall, C.M.; Nozawa, S.; Mitchell, N.J.; Pancheva, D.; Singer, W.; Hoffmann, P.
    The "Scandinavian Triangle" is a unique trio of radars within the DATAR Project (Dynamics and Temperatures from the Arctic MLT (60–97km) region): Andenes MF radar (69°N, 16°E); Tromsø MF radar (70°N, 19°E) and Esrange "Meteor" radar (68°N, 21°E). The radar-spacings range from 125-270km, making it unique for studies of wind variability associated with small-scale waves, comparisons of large-scale waves measured over small spacings, and for comparisons of winds from different radar systems. As such it complements results from arrays having spacings of 25km and 500km that have been located near Saskatoon. Correlation analysis is used to demonstrate a speed bias (MF smaller than the Meteor) between the radar types, which varies with season and altitude. Annual climatologies for the year 2000 of mean winds, solar tides, planetary and gravity waves are presented, and show indications of significant spatial variability across the Triangle and of differences in wave characteristics from middle latitudes.
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    Monthly mean climatology of the prevailing winds and tides in the Artic mesosphere/lower thermosphere
    (München : European Geopyhsical Union, 2004) Portnyagin, Y.I.; Solovjova, T.V.; Makarov, N.A.; Merzlyakov, E.G.; Manson, A.H.; Meek, C.E.; Hocking, W.; Mitchell, N.; Pancheva, D.; Hoffmann, P.; Singer, W.; Murayama, Y.; Igarashi, K.; Forbes, J.M.; Palo, S.; Hall, C.; Nozawa, S.
    The Arctic MLT wind regime parameters measured at the ground-based network of MF and meteor radar stations (Andenes 69° N, Tromsø 70° N, Esrange 68° N, Dixon 73.5° N, Poker Flat 65° N and Resolute Bay 75° N) are discussed and compared with those observed in the mid-latitudes. The network of the ground-based MF and meteor radars for measuring winds in the Arctic upper mesosphere and lower thermosphere provides an excellent opportunity for study of the main global dynamical structures in this height region and their dependence from longitude. Preliminary estimates of the differences between the measured winds and tides from the different radar types, situated 125-273km apart (Tromsø, Andenes and Esrange), are provided. Despite some differences arising from using different types of radars it is possible to study the dynamical wind structures. It is revealed that most of the observed dynamical structures are persistent from year to year, thus permitting the analysis of the Arctic MLT dynamics in a climatological sense. The seasonal behaviour of the zonally averaged wind parameters is, to some extent, similar to that observed at the moderate latitudes. However, the strength of the winds (except the prevailing meridional wind and the diurnal tide amplitudes) in the Arctic MLT region is, in general, less than that detected at the moderate latitudes, decreasing toward the pole. There are also some features in the vertical structure and seasonal variations of the Arctic MLT winds which are different from the expectations of the well-known empirical wind models CIRA-86 and HWM-93. The tidal phases show a very definite longitudinal dependence that permits the determination of the corresponding zonal wave numbers. It is shown that the migrating tides play an important role in the dynamics of the Arctic MLT region. However, there are clear indications with the presence in some months of non-migrating tidal modes of significant appreciable amplitude.
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    Infrasound - The cause of strong Polar Mesosphere Winter Echoes?
    (München : European Geopyhsical Union, 2006) Kirkwood, S.; Chilson, P.; Belova, E.; Dalin, P.; Häggström, I.; Rietveld, M.; Singer, W.
    The ESRAD 52-MHz and the EISCAT 224-MHz radars in northern Scandinavia observed thin layers of strongly enhanced radar echoes from the mesosphere (Polar Mesosphere Winter Echoes - PMWE) during a solar proton event in November 2004. Using the interferometric capabilities of ESRAD it was found that the scatterers responsible for PMWE show very high horizontal travel speeds, up to 500 ms-1 or more, and high aspect sensitivity, with echo arrival angles spread over as little as 0.3°. ESRAD also detected, on some occasions, discrete scattering regions moving across the field of view with periodicities of a few seconds. The very narrow, vertically directed beam of the more powerful EISCAT radar allowed measurements of the spectral widths of the radar echoes both inside the PMWE and from the background plasma above and below the PMWE. Spectral widths inside the PMWE were found to be indistinguishable from those from the background plasma. We propose that scatter from highly-damped ion-acoustic waves generated by partial reflection of infrasonic waves provides a reasonable explanation of the characteristics of the very strong PMWE reported here.
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    A case study of gravity waves in noctilucent clouds
    (München : European Geopyhsical Union, 2004) Dalin, P.; Kirkwood, S.; Moström, A.; Stebel, K.; Hoffmann, P.; Singer, W.
    We present a case study of a noctilucent cloud (NLC) display appearing on 10-11 August 2000 over Northern Sweden. Clear wave structures were visible in the clouds and time-lapse photography was used to derive the parameters characterising the gravity waves which could account for the observed NLC modulation. Using two nearby atmospheric radars, the Esrange MST Radar data and Andoya MF radar, we have identified gravity waves propagating upward from the upper stratosphere to NLC altitudes. The wave parameters derived from the radar measurements support the suggestion that gravity waves are responsible for the observed complex wave dynamics in the NLC.
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    Similarities and differences in polar mesosphere summer echoes observed in the Arctic and Antarctica
    (München : European Geopyhsical Union, 2008) Latteck, R.; Singer, W.; Morris, R.J.; Hocking, W.K.; Murphy, D.J.; Holdsworth, D.A.; Swarnalingam, N.
    Polar Mesosphere Summer Echoes (PMSE) have been observed in the high latitudes of the Northern and Southern Hemisphere for several years using VHF radars located at Andenes/Norway (69° N, 16° E), Resolute Bay/Canada (75° N, 95° W), and Davis/Antarctica (69° S, 78° E). The VHF radars at the three sites were calibrated using the same methods (noise source and delayed transmitting signal) and identical equipment. Volume reflectivity was derived from the calibrated echo power and the characteristics of the seasonal variation of PMSE were estimated at the sites for the years 2004 to 2007. The largest peak volume reflectivity of about 2×10−9 m−1 was observed at Andenes compared with their counterparts at Davis (~4×10−11 m−1) and Resolute Bay (~6×10−12 m−1). The peak of the PMSE height distribution is 85.6 km at Davis which is about 1 km higher than at Andenes. At Resolute Bay the height distribution peaks at about 85 km but only a few layers were found below 84 km. The mean PMSE occurrence rate is 83% at Andenes, 38% at Davis with larger variability and only 18% at Resolute Bay (in late summer). The duration of the PMSE season varies at Andenes from 104 to 113 days and at Davis from 88 to 93 days. In general the PMSE seasons starts about 5 days later at Davis and ends about 10 days earlier compared to Andenes. In all three seasons the PMSE occurrence suddenly drops to a much lower level at Davis about 32 days after solstice whereas the PMSE season decays smoothly at Andenes. The duration of the PMSE season at Andenes and Davis is highly correlated with the presence of equatorward directed winds, the observed differences in PMSE occurrence are related to the mesospheric temperatures at both sites.
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    All-sky interferometric meteor radar meteoroid speed estimation using the Fresnel transform
    (München : European Geopyhsical Union, 2007) Holdsworth, D.A.; Elford, W.G.; Vincent, R.A.; Reid, I.M.; Murphy, D.J.; Singer, W.
    Fresnel transform meteor speed estimation is investigated. A spectral based technique is developed allowing the transform to be applied at low temporal sampling rates. Simulations are used to compare meteoroid speeds determined using the Fresnel transform and alternative techniques, confirming that the Fresnel transform produces the most accurate meteoroid speed estimates for high effective pulse repetition frequencies (PRFs). The Fresnel transform is applied to high effective PRF data collected during Leonid meteor showers, producing speed estimates in good agreement with the theoretical pre-atmospheric speed of the 71 kms−1. Further simulations for the standard low effective PRF sampling parameters used for Buckland Park meteor radar (BPMR) observations suggests that the Fresnel transform can successfully estimate meteor speeds up to 80 kms−1. Fresnel transform speed estimation is applied using the BPMR, producing speed distributions similar to those obtained in previous studies. The technique is also applied to data collected using the BPMR sampling parameters during Southern delta-Aquarid and Geminid meteor showers, producing speeds in very good agreement with the theoretical pre-atmospheric speeds of these showers (41 kms−1 and 35 kms−1, respectively). However, application of the Fresnel transform to high speed showers suggests that the practical upper limit for accurate speed estimation using the BPMR sampling parameters is around 50 kms−1. This limit allows speed accurate estimates to be made for about 70% of known meteor showers, and around 70% of sporadic echoes.
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    The noctilucent cloud (NLC) display during the ECOMA/MASS sounding rocket flights on 3 August 2007: Morphology on global to local scales
    (München : European Geopyhsical Union, 2009) Baumgarten, G.; Fiedler, J.; Fricke, K.H.; Gerding, M.; Hervig, M.; Hoffmann, P.; Müller, N.; Pautet, P.-D.; Rapp, M.; Robert, C.; Rusch, D.; von Savigny, C.; Singer, W.
    During the ECOMA/MASS rocket campaign large scale NLC/PMC was observed by satellite, lidar and camera from polar to mid latitudes. We examine the observations from different instruments to investigate the morphology of the cloud. Satellite observations show a planetary wave 2 structure. Lidar observations from Kühlungsborn (54° N), Esrange (68° N) and ALOMAR (69° N) show a highly dynamic NLC layer. Under favorable solar illumination the cloud is also observable by ground-based cameras. The cloud was detected by cameras from Trondheim (63° N), Juliusruh (55° N) and Kühlungsborn. We investigate planetary scale morphology and local scale gravity wave structures, important for the interpretation of the small scale rocket soundings. We compare in detail the lidar observations with the NLC structure observed by the camera in Trondheim. The ALOMAR RMR-lidar observed only a faint NLC during the ECOMA launch window, while the camera in Trondheim showed a strong NLC display in the direction of ALOMAR. Using the high resolution camera observations (t~30 s, Δx<5 km) and the wind information from the meteor radar at ALOMAR we investigate the formation and destruction of NLC structures. We observe that the NLC brightness is reduced by a factor of 20–40 within 100 s which can be caused by a temperature about 15 K above the frostpoint temperature. A horizontal temperature gradient of more than 3 K/km is estimated.