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Cooling of the Thermosphere by Atomic Oxygen

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  • 1 Dept. of Meteorology, Florida State University, Tallahassee
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Abstract

A detailed numerical integration of the equation of radiative transfer over the 62 µ line of atomic oxygen is described. The results show that the cooling rate h in the lower thermosphere is appreciably lower than the value (hB) given by Bates’ approximate expression, and may even be negative near the mesopause. For the CIRA atmosphere, hhB = 0.02, 0.21 and 0.50 at altitudes 100, 110 and 120 km, respectively, and reaches 0.88 above 200 km. In relating cooling rates to temperature changes, a calculation of cp is performed which includes the effects of dissociation and accessibility of vibrational levels. The latter leads to an increase of the same order as the former.

Abstract

A detailed numerical integration of the equation of radiative transfer over the 62 µ line of atomic oxygen is described. The results show that the cooling rate h in the lower thermosphere is appreciably lower than the value (hB) given by Bates’ approximate expression, and may even be negative near the mesopause. For the CIRA atmosphere, hhB = 0.02, 0.21 and 0.50 at altitudes 100, 110 and 120 km, respectively, and reaches 0.88 above 200 km. In relating cooling rates to temperature changes, a calculation of cp is performed which includes the effects of dissociation and accessibility of vibrational levels. The latter leads to an increase of the same order as the former.

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