Diurnal Tide in the Equatorial Middle Atmosphere as Seen in LIMS Temperatures

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  • 1 Department of Atmospheric Sciences, University of Washington, Seattle, WA 98195
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Abstract

The distribution of day-night temperature differences in the middle atmosphere determined by the Nimbus 7 LIMS experiment is described. Day-night differences maximize at and are approximately symmetric about the equator. Successive centers of opposite sign increase in amplitude with altitude, the pattern having a vertical wavelength of ∼25 km. Profiles of rocket meridional wind at Kwajalein (8.7°N) and Ascension Island (8.0°S) taken near local noon and averaged over the LIMS data period, exhibit maxima which support the tidal interpretation of the equatorial temperature pattern. These characteristics are in general agreement with previous observational and theoretical results for the solar driven diurnal tide. Substantial time variations in amplitude and in location of the temperature maxima are observed. The diurnal tide near the equatorial stratopause appears to be influenced by the phase of the semiannual oscillation.

Abstract

The distribution of day-night temperature differences in the middle atmosphere determined by the Nimbus 7 LIMS experiment is described. Day-night differences maximize at and are approximately symmetric about the equator. Successive centers of opposite sign increase in amplitude with altitude, the pattern having a vertical wavelength of ∼25 km. Profiles of rocket meridional wind at Kwajalein (8.7°N) and Ascension Island (8.0°S) taken near local noon and averaged over the LIMS data period, exhibit maxima which support the tidal interpretation of the equatorial temperature pattern. These characteristics are in general agreement with previous observational and theoretical results for the solar driven diurnal tide. Substantial time variations in amplitude and in location of the temperature maxima are observed. The diurnal tide near the equatorial stratopause appears to be influenced by the phase of the semiannual oscillation.

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