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In Situ Atmospheric Turbulence Measurement Using the Terrestrial Magnetic Field—A Compass for a Radiosonde

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  • 1 Department of Meteorology, University of Reading, Reading, United Kingdom
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Abstract

A method for in situ detection of atmospheric turbulence has been developed using an inexpensive sensor carried within a conventional meteorological radiosonde. The sensor—a Hall effect magnetometer—was used to monitor the terrestrial magnetic field. Rapid time scale (10 s or less) fluctuations in the magnetic field measurement were related to the motion of the radiosonde, which was strongly influenced by atmospheric turbulence. Comparison with cloud radar measurements showed turbulence in regions where rapid time-scale magnetic fluctuations occurred. Reliable measurements were obtained between the surface and the stratosphere.

Corresponding author address: Dr. Robin Hogan, Dept. of Meteorology, University of Reading, P.O. Box 243, Earley Gate, Reading RG6 6BB, United Kingdom. Email: r.j.hogan@reading.ac.uk

Abstract

A method for in situ detection of atmospheric turbulence has been developed using an inexpensive sensor carried within a conventional meteorological radiosonde. The sensor—a Hall effect magnetometer—was used to monitor the terrestrial magnetic field. Rapid time scale (10 s or less) fluctuations in the magnetic field measurement were related to the motion of the radiosonde, which was strongly influenced by atmospheric turbulence. Comparison with cloud radar measurements showed turbulence in regions where rapid time-scale magnetic fluctuations occurred. Reliable measurements were obtained between the surface and the stratosphere.

Corresponding author address: Dr. Robin Hogan, Dept. of Meteorology, University of Reading, P.O. Box 243, Earley Gate, Reading RG6 6BB, United Kingdom. Email: r.j.hogan@reading.ac.uk

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