Formation characteristics of sporadic Na layers observed simultaneously by lidar and airglow instruments during ALOHA‐90

C. S. Gardner, T. J. Kane, J. H. Hecht, R. L. Walterscheid, J. H. Yee, R. J. Niciejewski, R. P. Lowe, D. N. Turnbull

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Abstract

Sporadic Na (Nas) layers were observed by the airborne lidar during ALOHA‐90 on the 22, 25 and 27 March flight missions. Perturbations in the O2 and OH nighttime airglow emission intensities and temperatures were also observed by instruments on the aircraft and at Haleakala Crater (20.8°N, 156.2°W) during these events. The most striking correlation between the airglow and lidar measurements occurred during the northbound flight leg of the 25 March mission. When the Nas layer formed at 90.7 km, while the Electra aircraft was between 750 and 500 km south of Haleakala, the O2 temperatures near 95 km above the Electra and Haleakala increased by approximately 45 K. The data for this night suggest a connection between Nas and a large‐scale wave, and suggest that the wave is tidal in nature. The data also suggest that some Nas layers can form very quickly over large geographic areas. Fast chemical processes are required to generate the large amounts of atomic Na involved in some of these events.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1369-1372
Number of pages4
JournalGeophysical Research Letters
Volume18
Issue number7
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 1991

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All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Geophysics
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)

Cite this

Gardner, C. S., Kane, T. J., Hecht, J. H., Walterscheid, R. L., Yee, J. H., Niciejewski, R. J., Lowe, R. P., & Turnbull, D. N. (1991). Formation characteristics of sporadic Na layers observed simultaneously by lidar and airglow instruments during ALOHA‐90. Geophysical Research Letters, 18(7), 1369-1372. https://doi.org/10.1029/91GL01515