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G. L. Manney, Y. J. Orsolini, H. C. Pumphrey, and A. E. Roche

Abstract

Upper Atmosphere Research Satellite tracer data and isentropic transport calculations using U.K. Meteorological Office winds initialized with these data show evidence of eastward-traveling waves in the polar upper stratosphere in late austral winter 1992. Microwave Limb Sounder (MLS) H2O from prototype iterative retrievals shows a 4-day wave signal at levels from ∼1.5 to 0.1 hPa; a 4-day wave signal was not obvious in production retrievals of MLS H2O. At 1800 K, the 4-day wave signal in MLS H2O has a double-peaked structure in latitude, which is reproduced in isentropic transport calculations. The time evolution, amplitude, and phase of the 4-day wave in the transport calculations agree well with observations at high latitudes; the position and shape of the polar vortex and of H2O drawn up around the vortex are reproduced by the transport calculations. Spectral analyses of the Cryogen Limb Array Etalon Spectrometer (CLAES) CH4 are dominated by more slowly eastward-moving waves (∼6–10 days), but a weak 4-day wave signature is also present between ∼1.5 and 4 hPa. Transport calculations initialized with CH4 show similar eastward-traveling signals, good agreement with the phase of the observed signals, and overall agreement with the observed position of the vortex. The qualitative success of the transport calculations in reproducing the phase and overall time evolution of high-latitude eastward-traveling waves in the polar upper stratosphere indicates that the winds used for the transport calculations are generally reliable, and that the eastward-traveling waves identified in the MLS H2O and CLAES CH4 originate to a large extent from horizontal transport processes. Examination of the vertical structure of potential vorticity shows periods when at the highest levels studied (around 1800 K), the 4-day wave is responsible for the main motion of the vortex, whereas at lower levels (at and below ∼1400 K) the vortex motion is characterized by a slower eastward progression, and the 4-day wave signal contributes to motions that are confined inside the vortex.

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Janusz Eluszkiewicz, David Crisp, R. G. Grainger, Alyn Lambert, A. E. Roche, J. B. Kumer, and J. L. Mergenthaler

Abstract

The simultaneous measurements of temperature, aerosol extinction, and concentrations of radiatively active gases by several instruments aboard the Upper Atmosphere Research Satellite permit an assessment of the uncertainties in the diagnosed stratospheric heating rates and in the resulting residual circulation. In this paper, measurements taken by the Cryogenic Limb Array Etalon Spectrometer (CLAES) are used to compute the circulation and to compare it against values obtained previously from the measurements obtained by the Microwave Limb Sounder (MLS). There is a broad agreement between the two sets of calculations and known biases in either CLAES or MLS ozone and temperature measurements are found to be responsible for the areas of disagreement. The inclusion of aerosols has improved the estimates of the residual circulation in the lower stratosphere during the 1992–93 period covered by CLAES. Present estimates of the aerosol heating are significantly different from those found in other studies, probably as a result of differences in the treatment of tropospheric clouds and in the adopted vertical profiles of aerosol extinction. Moreover, a large uncertainty in these estimates is caused by the uncertainties in the assumed refractive indices for sulfuric acid solutions.

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William J. Randel, Byron A. Boville, John C. Gille, Paul L. Bailey, Steven T. Massie, J. B. Kumer, J. L. Mergenthaler, and A. E. Roche

Abstract

Global variability and budgets of stratospheric nitrous oxide (N2O) are studied using output from a stratospheric version of the NCAR Community Climate Model. The model extends over 0–80 km, incorporating an N2O-like tracer with tropospheric source and upper-stratospheric photochemical sink, the latter parameterized using linear damping rates obtained from detailed two-dimensional model calculations. Results from the model over several seasonal cycles are compared with observations of N2O from the Cryogenic Limb Array Etalon Spectrometer instrument on the Upper Atmosphere Research Satellite. The model produces N2O structure and variability that is in reasonable agreement with the observations. Global budgets of stratospheric N2O are furthermore analyzed using model output, based on the transformed Eulerian-mean, zonal-mean framework. These budgets are used to quantify the importance of planetary wave constituent transport in the stratosphere, for both slow seasonal variations and fast planetary wave events. These results demonstrate that such wave fluxes act to form and sharpen the strong subtropical N2O gradients observed in satellite measurements.

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W. A. Lahoz, A. O'Neill, E. S. Carr, R. S. Harwood, L. Froidevaux, W. G. Read, J. W. Waters, J. B. Kumer, J. L. Mergenthaler, A. E. Roche, G. E. Peckham, and R. Swinbank

Abstract

The three-dimensional evolution of stratospheric water vapor distributions observed by the Microwave Limb Sounder (MLS) during the period October 1991–July 1992 is documented. The transport features inferred from the MLS water vapor distributions are corroborated using other dynamical fields, namely, nitrous oxide from the Cryogenic Limb Array Etalon Spectrometer instrument, analyzed winds from the U.K. Meteorological Office (UKMO), UKMO-derived potential vorticity, and the diabatic heating field. By taking a vortex-centered view and an along-track view, the authors observe in great detail the vertical and horizontal structure of the northern winter stratosphere. It is demonstrated that the water vapor distributions show clear signatures of the effects of diabatic descent through isentropic surfaces and quasi-horizontal transport along isentropic surfaces, and that the large-scale winter flow is organized by the interaction between the westerly polar vortex and the Aleutian high.

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S. T. Massie, P. L. Bailey, J. C. Gille, E. C. Lee, J. L. Mergenthaler, A. E. Roche, J. B. Kumer, E. F. Fishbein, J. W. Waters, and W. A. Lahoz

Abstract

Multiwavelength observations of Antarctic and midlatitude aerosol by the Cryogenic Limb Array Etalon Spectrometer (CLAES) experiment on the Upper Atmosphere Research Satellite are used to demonstrate a technique that identifies the location of polar stratospheric clouds. The technique discussed uses the normalized area of the triangle formed by the aerosol extinctions at 925, 1257, and 1605 cm−1 (10.8, 8.0, and 6.2 μm) to derive a spectral aerosol measure M of the aerosol spectrum. Mie calculations for spherical particles and T-matrix calculations for spheroidal particles are used to generate theoretical spectral extinction curves for sulfate and polar stratospheric cloud particles. The values of the spectral aerosol measure M for the sulfate and polar stratospheric cloud particles are shown to be different. Aerosol extinction data, corresponding to temperatures between 180 and 220 K at a pressure of 46 hPa (near 21-km altitude) for 18 August 1992, are used to demonstrate the technique. Thermodynamic calculations, based upon frost-point calculations and laboratory phase-equilibrium studies of nitric acid trihydrate, are used to predict the location of nitric acid trihydrate cloud particles.

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A. E. Roche, J. B. Kumer, J. L. Mergenthaler, R. W. Nightingale, W. G. Uplinger, G. A. Ely, J. F. Potter, D. J. Wuebbles, P. S. Connell, and D. E. Kinnison

Abstract

This paper discusses simultaneous measurements of stratospheric CIONO2, HNO3, temperature, and aerosol extinction coefficient by the Cryogenic Limb Array Etalon Spectrometer (CLAES) on the NASA Upper Atmosphere Research Satellite (UARS), obtained over the period 9 January 1992 through 23 April 1993. The discussion concentrates on the stratosphere region near 21 km of particular interest to heterogeneously driven ozone depletion. For periods between 12 June and 1 September 1992 at latitudes poleward of about 60°S, when temperatures were below type I polar stratospheric cloud (PSC) formation thresholds throughout the lower stratosphere, CLAES observed high levels of PSCs coincident with highly depleted fields of both HNO3 and CIONO2. By 17 September, the incidence of PSCs had greatly diminished in the lower stratosphere, but both CIONO2 and HNO3 remained highly depleted. These observations are consistent with the removal of gaseous HNO3 through the formation of nitric acid trihydrate (NAT) particles and the removal of CIONO2 through heterogeneous reactions on the particle surfaces. They also suggest substantial denitrification of the lower Antarctic vortex through sedimentation of PSC particles. In the Northern Hemisphere winter of 1992/93 far fewer PSCs were observed in the Arctic lower-stratosphere vortex, which had shorter periods and more localized regions of cold temperatures. Both HNO3 and CIONO2 maintained much higher levels inside the Arctic vortex than those seen in the Antarctic throughout the winter/spring period. Following 28 February 1993 when Arctic vortex temperatures rose above 195 K, CIONO2 was observed in large quantities [>2.1 ppbv near 21 km] inside the vortex. The persistence of relatively high levels of HNO3 inside the Arctic spring vortex compared with the low levels seen in the Antarctic spring vortex suggest a much lower level of denitrification in the Arctic.

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G.L. Manney, R.W. Zurek, W.A. Lahoz, R.S. Harwood, J.C. Gille, J.B. Kumer, J.L. Mergenthaler, A.E. Roche, A. O'Neill, R. Swinbank, and J.W. Waters

Abstract

The transport of passive tracers observed by the Upper Atmosphere Research Satellite is simulated using computed three-dimensional trajectories of ≈ 100 000 air parcels initialized on a stratosphere grid, with horizontal winds provided by the United Kingdom Meteorological Office data assimilation system, and vertical (cross isentropic) velocities computed using a fast radiation code. The conservative evolution of trace constituent fields is estimated over 20–30-day periods by assigning to each parcel the observed mixing ratio of the long-lived trace gases N20 and CH4 observed by the Cryogenic Limb Army Etalon Spectrometer (CLAES) and H2O observed by the Microwave Limb Sounder (MLS) on the initialization date. Agreement between calculated and observed fields is best inside the polar vortex and is better in the Arctic than in the Antarctic. Although there is not always detailed agreement outside the vortex, the trajectory calculations still reproduce the average large-scale characteristics of passive tracer evolution in midlatitudes. In late winter, synoptic maps from trajectory calculations reproduce all major features of the observations, including large tongues or blobs of material drawn from low latitudes into the region of the anticyclone during February–March 1993. Comparison of lower-stratospheric observations of the CLAES tracers with the calculations suggests that discontinuities seen in CLAES data in the Antarctic late winter lower stratosphere are inconsistent with passive tracer behavior. In the Arctic, and in the Antarctic late winter, MLS H20 observations show behavior that is inconsistent with calculations and with that expected for passive tracers inside the polar vortex in the middle-to-upper stratosphere. Diabatic descent rates in the Arctic lower stratosphere deduced from data are consistent with those from the calculations. In the Antarctic lower stratosphere, the calculations appear to underestimate the diabatic descent. The agreement between large-scale features of calculated and observed tracer fields supports the utility of these calculations in diagnosing trace species transport in the winter polar vortex.

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