All Physics Faculty Publications

Document Type

Article

Journal/Book Title/Conference

Geophysical Research Letters

Volume

28

Issue

9

Publisher

American Geophysical Union

Publication Date

5-2001

First Page

1899

Last Page

1902

DOI

10.1029/2000GL012682

Abstract

Two high‐precision CEDAR instruments, an OH Mesospheric Temperature Mapper (MTM) and a Na Temperature Lidar, have been used to investigate seasonal variability in the mid‐latitude temperature at ∼87 km altitude over the western USA. Here we report the observation of a large perturbation in mesospheric temperature that occurs shortly after the autumnal equinox in close association with the penetration of planetary‐wave energy from the troposphere into the mesosphere. This perturbation has been observed on three occasions and exhibits a departure of up to ∼25–30 K from the nominal seasonal trend during a disturbed period of ∼2 weeks. Such behavior represents a dramatic transient departure from the seasonal trend expected on the basis of current empirical models. These novel results coupled with a recent TIME‐GCM modeling study [Liu et al., 2000] provide important insight into the role of planetary waves in mesospheric variability during the equinox periods.

Comments

Published by the American Geophysical Union in Geophysical Research Letters.

http://www.agu.org/pubs/crossref/2001/2000GL012682.shtml

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