Atmospheric Tidal Measurements at 50 km from a Constant-Altitude Balloon

Harold N. Ballard Atmospheric Sciences Laboratory, U.S. Army Electronics Command, White Sands Missile Range, N.M.

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Norman J. Beyers Atmospheric Sciences Laboratory, U.S. Army Electronics Command, White Sands Missile Range, N.M.

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Bruce T. Miers Atmospheric Sciences Laboratory, U.S. Army Electronics Command, White Sands Missile Range, N.M.

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Migul Izquierdo Schellenger Research Laboratories, University of Texas at El Paso

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John Weitacre Schellenger Research Laboratories, University of Texas at El Paso

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Abstract

A balloon, the second In a series of high-altitude balloon flights, was launched to a record altitude of 50 km from White Sands Missile Range, N.M., on 22 September 1969. The 8.7 × 105 cubic meter, helium-filled, zero-pressure, polyethelene balloon served as a constant-level stable support for an instrument payload consisting of bead thermistor atmospheric and balloon-skin temperature sensors, thermal conductivity pressure gage, a forward-scattering beta-ray atmospheric density gage, chemiluminescent ozonesondes, a Geiger tube cosmic ray detector, and an accelerometer for the determination of the vertical component of balloon acceleration. Radar position-time data served to determine the wind velocity. Seven hours and 40 minutes of data were obtained from the various instruments at a near-constant altitude of 49 km (± 1 km). This paper discusses specifically the variations in the observed balloon trajectory, the supporting rocketsonde-determined winds, and the balloon-borne temperature sensor values as related to the existence of a diurnal atmospheric tide near 50 km. It also presents the related data obtained from the other instruments comprising the payload.

Abstract

A balloon, the second In a series of high-altitude balloon flights, was launched to a record altitude of 50 km from White Sands Missile Range, N.M., on 22 September 1969. The 8.7 × 105 cubic meter, helium-filled, zero-pressure, polyethelene balloon served as a constant-level stable support for an instrument payload consisting of bead thermistor atmospheric and balloon-skin temperature sensors, thermal conductivity pressure gage, a forward-scattering beta-ray atmospheric density gage, chemiluminescent ozonesondes, a Geiger tube cosmic ray detector, and an accelerometer for the determination of the vertical component of balloon acceleration. Radar position-time data served to determine the wind velocity. Seven hours and 40 minutes of data were obtained from the various instruments at a near-constant altitude of 49 km (± 1 km). This paper discusses specifically the variations in the observed balloon trajectory, the supporting rocketsonde-determined winds, and the balloon-borne temperature sensor values as related to the existence of a diurnal atmospheric tide near 50 km. It also presents the related data obtained from the other instruments comprising the payload.

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