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    On microphysical processes of noctilucent clouds (NLC): Observations and modeling of mean and width of the particle size-distribution
    (Göttingen : Copernicus, 2010) Baumgarten, G.; Fiedler, J.; Rapp, M.
    Noctilucent clouds (NLC) in the polar summer mesopause region have been observed in Norway (69° N, 16° E) between 1998 and 2009 by 3-color lidar technique. Assuming a mono-modal Gaussian size distribution we deduce mean and width of the particle sizes throughout the clouds. We observe a quasi linear relationship between distribution width and mean of the particle size at the top of the clouds and a deviation from this behavior for particle sizes larger than 40 nm, most often in the lower part of the layer. The vertically integrated particle properties show that 65% of the data follows the linear relationship with a slope of 0.42±0.02 for mean particle sizes up to 40 nm. For the vertically resolved particle properties (Δz = Combining double low line 0.15 km) the slope is comparable and about 0.39±0.03. For particles larger than 40 nm the distribution width becomes nearly independent of particle size and even decreases in the lower part of the layer. We compare our observations to microphysical modeling of noctilucent clouds and find that the distribution width depends on turbulence, the time that turbulence can act (cloud age), and the sampling volume/time (atmospheric variability). The model results nicely reproduce the measurements and show that the observed slope can be explained by eddy diffusion profiles as observed from rocket measurements. © 2010 Author(s).
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    On the efficiency of rocket-borne particle detection in the mesosphere
    (München : European Geopyhsical Union, 2007) Hedin, J.; Gumbel, J.; Rapp, M.
    Meteoric smoke particles have been proposed as a key player in the formation and evolution of mesospheric phenomena. Despite their apparent importance still very little is known about these particles. Important questions concern the smoke number density and size distribution as a function of altitude as well as the fraction of charged particles. Sounding rockets are used to measure smoke in situ, but aerodynamics has remained a major challenge. Basically, the small smoke particles tend to follow the gas flow around the payload rather than reaching the detector if aerodynamics is not considered carefully in the detector design. So far only indirect evidence for the existence of meteoric smoke has been available from measurements of heavy charge carriers. Quantitative ways are needed that relate these measured particle population to the atmospheric particle population. This requires in particular knowledge about the size-dependent, altitude-dependent and charge-dependent detection efficiency for a given instrument. In this paper, we investigate the aerodynamics for a typical electrostatic detector design. We first quantify the flow field of the background gas, then introduce particles in the flow field and determine their trajectories around the payload structure. We use two different models to trace particles in the flow field, a Continuous motion model and a Brownian motion model. Brownian motion is shown to be of basic importance for the smallest particles. Detection efficiencies are determined for three detector designs, including two with ventilation holes to allow airflow through the detector. Results from this investigation show that rocket-borne smoke detection with conventional detectors is largely limited to altitudes above 75 km. The flow through a ventilated detector has to be relatively large in order to significantly improve the detection efficiency.
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    Simultaneous observations of NLCs and MSEs at midlatitudes: Implications for formation and advection of ice particles
    (Göttingen : Copernicus GmbH, 2018) Gerding, M.; Zöllner, J.; Zecha, M.; Baumgarten, K.; Höffner, J.; Stober, G.; Lübken, F.-J.
    We combined ground-based lidar observations of noctilucent clouds (NLCs) with collocated, simultaneous radar observations of mesospheric summer echoes (MSEs) in order to compare ice cloud altitudes at a midlatitude site (Kühlungsborn, Germany, 54° N, 12° E). Lidar observations are limited to larger particles ( > 10 nm), while radars are also sensitive to small particles ( < 10 nm), but require sufficient ionization and turbulence at the ice cloud altitudes. The combined lidar and radar data set thus includes some information on the size distribution within the cloud and through this on the of the cloud. The soundings for this study are carried out by the IAP Rayleigh-Mie-Raman (RMR) lidar and the OSWIN VHF radar. On average, there is no difference between the lower edges (lowNLC and lowMSE). The mean difference of the upper edges upNLC and upMSE is g1/4 500 m, which is much less than expected from observations at higher latitudes. In contrast to high latitudes, the MSEs above our location typically do not reach much higher than the NLCs. In addition to earlier studies from our site, this gives additional evidence for the supposition that clouds containing large enough particles to be observed by lidar are not formed locally but are advected from higher latitudes. During the advection process, the smaller particles in the upper part of the cloud either grow and sediment, or they sublimate. Both processes result in a thinning of the layer. High-altitude MSEs, usually indicating nucleation of ice particles, are rarely observed in conjunction with lidar observations of NLCs at Kühlungsborn. © Author(s) 2018.