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Journal/Book Title/Conference

2016 Joint CEDAR-GEM Workshop, Santa Fe, NM

Publication Date



The Rayleigh-scatter lidar at the Atmospheric Lidar Observatory at Utah State University (ALO-USU; 41.74° N, 111.81° W) started observations in 1993. In 2012 the original lidar system was upgraded with an array of larger mirrors and two lasers to enable observations of the upper mesosphere and lower thermosphere from 70 km to about 115 km in altitude. (Continued refinement should provide data to above 120 km.) Recently, the original system was reconfigured [Elliott et al., 2016] to again observe the lower mesosphere between 40 km and 90 km. Initial data collected by these two parts of the Rayleigh system have been “stitched” together to obtain a full temperature profile from 40 km to about 115 km. These extended profiles have been used to obtain relative neutral densities and temperatures through the entire mesosphere and well into the lower thermosphere. This extends the CEDAR goal of studying coupling between atmospheric regions. Furthermore, by normalizing the relative neutral densities between ~35 and 45 km to an advanced reanalysis model, absolute neutral densities become available from a ground-based, remote-sensing instrument all the way into the lower thermosphere. This opens that region to detailed studies for many research topics.


Poster presented at 2016 joint CEDAR-GEM workshop.