Science.gov

Sample records for earth atmosphere

  1. The earth's atmosphere.

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Vaughan, W. W. (Editor); Devries, L. L.

    1972-01-01

    Topics discussed include the effects of solar radiation on the heat balance of the earth and its atmosphere, the physicomathematical models of the atmosphere and the computational schemes used in numerical investigations of the general circulation of the atmosphere, the effects of atmospheric turbulence on aeronautical systems, te chemistry of different regions of the atmosphere, the use of hot-filament and cold-cathode vacuum gauges to measure upper-atmosphere densities, methods of determining the air density at heights near a satellite's perigee by analyzing changes in its orbit, and an evaluation of various atmospheric models in the 100- to 1000-km altitude range.

  2. Earth's earliest atmospheres.

    PubMed

    Zahnle, Kevin; Schaefer, Laura; Fegley, Bruce

    2010-10-01

    Earth is the one known example of an inhabited planet and to current knowledge the likeliest site of the one known origin of life. Here we discuss the origin of Earth's atmosphere and ocean and some of the environmental conditions of the early Earth as they may relate to the origin of life. A key punctuating event in the narrative is the Moon-forming impact, partly because it made Earth for a short time absolutely uninhabitable, and partly because it sets the boundary conditions for Earth's subsequent evolution. If life began on Earth, as opposed to having migrated here, it would have done so after the Moon-forming impact. What took place before the Moon formed determined the bulk properties of the Earth and probably determined the overall compositions and sizes of its atmospheres and oceans. What took place afterward animated these materials. One interesting consequence of the Moon-forming impact is that the mantle is devolatized, so that the volatiles subsequently fell out in a kind of condensation sequence. This ensures that the volatiles were concentrated toward the surface so that, for example, the oceans were likely salty from the start. We also point out that an atmosphere generated by impact degassing would tend to have a composition reflective of the impacting bodies (rather than the mantle), and these are almost without exception strongly reducing and volatile-rich. A consequence is that, although CO- or methane-rich atmospheres are not necessarily stable as steady states, they are quite likely to have existed as long-lived transients, many times. With CO comes abundant chemical energy in a metastable package, and with methane comes hydrogen cyanide and ammonia as important albeit less abundant gases.

  3. Early Earth: Atmosphere's solar shock

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ramirez, Ramses

    2016-06-01

    Frequent storms on the young Sun would have ejected energetic particles and compressed Earth's magnetosphere. Simulations suggest that the particles penetrated the atmosphere and initiated reactions that warmed the planet and fertilized life.

  4. Monitoring Earth's Atmosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1997-01-01

    Originally developed by Goddard Space Flight Center, the Micro Pulse Lidar (MPL) System is now available commercially from Science and Engineering Services, Inc through a technology transfer license. The MPL System is built to characterize numerous details of the composition and dynamics of the atmosphere, such as atmospheric cloud and aerosol concentration and is suitable for environmental monitoring studies that require full-time, unattended measurements of cloud and aerosol height structure. It is eye safe at all ranges and because of the modest dimensions, can be used where space is limited. The system can also be equipped with a protective climate-controlled enclosure, permitting placement of the system in field operations where adequate shelter may not exist. Studies of climate dynamics, meteorological research, and environmental monitoring are a few of the possible applications.

  5. Earth surface-atmosphere interactions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Koppmann, R.; Fiedler, F.

    2003-04-01

    The German Atmospheric Research Program (AFO2000) consists of 155 scientific contributions organised in 25 joint projects, 11 individual projects and 5 young scientist groups. The overall aim of AFO2000 is to improve the understanding of the atmospheric system, to develop and supply instruments for environmental policy, and to support young scientists in the field of atmospheric research. 10 of these projects investigate transport processes between the Earth's surface and the atmosphere. Biogenic emissions of trace gases and their influence on the chemistry in the lower atmosphere are studied in detail by field experiments at selected forest sites in Germany and by simulation experiments. Together with numerical simulations and elaborated emission inventories the results will be used to estimate changes in emissions due to land use changes and climatic changes. To understand the observed distributions of trace gases in the atmosphere chemical mechanisms are studied, which lead to the transformation of these compounds. It is necessary to integrate individual processes within complex models in order to detect unknown interactions and be able to make forecasts on future developments . Fluxes of aerosol and gases from the soil to the lower atmosphere are also investigated. Research activities address the different contributions to these fluxes from urban and rural areas by vertical soundings in the lower troposphere and by remote sensing. Complementary to these activities model simulations over differently sized areas are also performed. A further focus of these projects are quantitative descriptions of transport and turbulent diffusion of trace compounds, moisture, momentum, and energy in the atmosphere above different landscapes. Therefore additional flow structures induced by heterogeneous land use and terrain relief are studied in detail. To investigate these transport processes innovative measurement systems, ground based stations (anchor stations) and also modern

  6. Meteors in the Earth's Atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Murad, Edmond; Williams, Iwan P.

    2002-09-01

    1. Introduction Iwan Williams and Edmond Murad; 2. The evolution of meteoroid streams Iwan Williams; 3. Space dust measurements Eberhard Grun, Valeri Dikarev, Harald Kruger and Markus Landgraf; 4. Extraterrestrial dust in the near-Earth environment George Flynn; 5. Detection and analysis procedures for visual photographic and image intensified CCD meteor observations Robert Hawkes; 6. Radar observations W. Jack Baggaley; 7. Meteor trails as observed by Lidar Ulf von Zahn, J. Hoffner and William McNeil; 8. In situ measurements of meteoritic ions Joseph Grebowsky and Arthur Aikin; 9. Collected extraterrestrial materials: interplanetary dust particles, micrometeorites, meteorites, and meteoritic dust Frans Rietmeijer; 10. Meteoroid impacts on spacecraft; Luigi Foschini; 11. Models of meteoritic metals in the atmosphere William McNeil, Edmond Murad and John Plane; 12. Laboratory studies of meteoritic metal chemistry John Plane; 13. Summary and future outlook Edmond Murad and Iwan Williams.

  7. Volcanic emissions and the early Earth atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Martin, R. S.; Mather, T. A.; Pyle, D. M.

    2007-08-01

    Despite uncertainties in our understanding of early Earth volcanism and atmospheric composition, thermodynamic modelling is able to offer estimates of the global production of reactive trace species (NO, OH, SO 3, Cl, Br and I) from early Earth volcanism, and thereby to shed light on processes which may have been different in Earth's early atmosphere. Model results show that thermal decomposition of magmatic H 2O, CO 2 and SO 2 in high- T mixtures of magmatic and atmospheric gases (at T > 1400 °C) generate high levels of reactive trace gas species. Production of these reactive trace species is insensitive to atmospheric CO 2 in mixtures where the atmospheric gas is the minor component and will hence continue during periods of low atmospheric CO 2. Fluxes of NO, OH, Cl, Br and I from early Earth volcanism are predicted to exceed those from modern Earth volcanism as the higher temperature of early Earth emissions compensates for lower levels of O 2 in the atmosphere, compared to the modern Earth. Under certain conditions, the volcanic NO flux from early Earth volcanism is found to be comparable to other sources of reactive N such as lightning NO and photochemical HCN. This is one possible source of fixed nitrogen which may alleviate any postulated Archean nitrogen crisis. Our thermodynamic model reveals that production of SO 3 (a potential precursor for near-source volcanic sulphate and hence 'primary' volcanic aerosol) is likely to be significantly lower from early Earth volcanism. Uncertainty in the pathway to near-source sulphate in modern volcanism (i.e., the reaction of SO 3 with water or direct emission) introduces a large uncertainty into the production rate of near-source volcanic sulphate on the early Earth.

  8. Simulating super earth atmospheres in the laboratory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Claudi, R.; Erculiani, M. S.; Galletta, G.; Billi, D.; Pace, E.; Schierano, D.; Giro, E.; D'Alessandro, M.

    2016-01-01

    Several space missions, such as JWST, TESS and the very recently proposed ARIEL, or ground-based experiments, as SPHERE and GPI, have been proposed to measure the atmospheric transmission, reflection and emission spectra of extrasolar planets. The planet atmosphere characteristics and possible biosignatures will be inferred by studying planetary spectra in order to identify the emission/absorption lines/bands from atmospheric molecules such as water (H2O), carbon monoxide (CO), methane (CH4), ammonia (NH3), etc. In particular, it is important to know in detail the optical characteristics of gases in the typical physical conditions of the planetary atmospheres and how these characteristics could be affected by radiation driven photochemical and biochemical reaction. The main aim of the project `Atmosphere in a Test Tube' is to provide insights on exoplanet atmosphere modification due to biological intervention. This can be achieved simulating planetary atmosphere at different pressure and temperature conditions under the effects of radiation sources, used as proxies of different bands of the stellar emission. We are tackling the characterization of extrasolar planet atmospheres by mean of innovative laboratory experiments described in this paper. The experiments are intended to reproduce the conditions on warm earths and super earths hosted by low-mass M dwarfs primaries with the aim to understand if a cyanobacteria population hosted on a Earth-like planet orbiting an M0 star is able to maintain its photosynthetic activity and produce traceable signatures.

  9. Atmospheric electricity and aerosol-cloud interactions in earth's atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Manninen, Hanna E.; Tammet, Hannes; Mäkelä, Antti; Haapalainen, Jussi; Mirme, Sander; Nieminen, Tuomo; Franchin, Alessandro; Petäjä, Tuukka; Kulmala, Markku; Hõrrak, Urmas

    2013-05-01

    Firstly, atmospheric ions play an important role in the fair weather electricity in Earth's atmosphere. Small ions, or charged molecular clusters, carry electric currents in the atmosphere. These small ions are continuously present, and their lifetime in lower atmosphere is about one minute. It's essential to find out a connection between the production rate of cluster ions, ion-ion recombination, and ion-aerosol attachment, and their ambient concentrations, in order to understand electrical properties of air. Secondly, atmospheric ions are important for Earth's climate, due to their potential role in secondary aerosol formation, which can lead to increased number of cloud condensation nuclei (CCN), which in turn can change the cloud properties. Our aim is to quantify the connections between these two important roles of air ions based on field observations.

  10. Earth Atmosphere Observatory Formation at L2

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mettler, Edward; Acikmese, A. Behcet; Breckenridge, William G.; Mecenka, Steven A.; Tubbs, Eldred F.

    2004-01-01

    This paper is a product of research supported by NASA under RASC (the Revolutionary Aerospace Systems Concepts) program. It presents an overall system architecture, and covers issues of deployment, navigation, and control related to a formation of two spacecraft in the neighborhood of the Sun-Earth L2 Lagrange point (on the Sun-Earth line), that serves as an observatory of Earth's atmosphere. The observatory concept definition study was a multi-center NASA effort conducted in 2003, and covered a much wider scope than is presented in this focused paper.The Earth observatory at L2 is a unique design concept that can improve the knowledge and understanding of dynamic, chemical and radiative mechanisms that cause changes in the atmosphere, and can lead to the development of models and techniques to predict short and long-term climate changes.

  11. ATMOSPHERES OF HOT SUPER-EARTHS

    SciTech Connect

    Castan, Thibaut; Menou, Kristen

    2011-12-20

    Hot super-Earths likely possess minimal atmospheres established through vapor saturation equilibrium with the ground. We solve the hydrodynamics of these tenuous atmospheres at the surface of CoRot-7b, Kepler-10b, and 55 Cnc-e, including idealized treatments of magnetic drag and ohmic dissipation. We find that atmospheric pressures remain close to their local saturation values in all cases. Despite the emergence of strongly supersonic winds which carry sublimating mass away from the substellar point, the atmospheres do not extend much beyond the day-night terminators. Ground temperatures, which determine the planetary thermal (infrared) signature, are largely unaffected by exchanges with the atmosphere and thus follow the effective irradiation pattern. Atmospheric temperatures, however, which control cloud condensation and thus albedo properties, can deviate substantially from the irradiation pattern. Magnetic drag and ohmic dissipation can also strongly impact the atmospheric behavior, depending on atmospheric composition and the planetary magnetic field strength. We conclude that hot super-Earths could exhibit interesting signatures in reflection (and possibly in emission) which would trace a combination of their ground, atmospheric, and magnetic properties.

  12. A hydrogen-rich early Earth atmosphere.

    PubMed

    Tian, Feng; Toon, Owen B; Pavlov, Alexander A; De Sterck, H

    2005-05-13

    We show that the escape of hydrogen from early Earth's atmosphere likely occurred at rates slower by two orders of magnitude than previously thought. The balance between slow hydrogen escape and volcanic outgassing could have maintained a hydrogen mixing ratio of more than 30%. The production of prebiotic organic compounds in such an atmosphere would have been more efficient than either exogenous delivery or synthesis in hydrothermal systems. The organic soup in the oceans and ponds on early Earth would have been a more favorable place for the origin of life than previously thought.

  13. Atmospheric composition of cold super-Earths

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    von Paris, P.; Patzer, B.; Grenfell, J. L.; Hedelt, P.; Stracke, B.; Rauer, H.

    2008-09-01

    Planets of masses below 10 times that of Earth (so-called Super-Earths) orbiting far away from their central star have been discovered by Microlensing surveys. Super-Earth atmospheres cannot be characterized remotely yet. However, based on climate modelling and analogies with our solar system, we can put constraints on possible atmospheric compositions. Whenever the triple point of a gaseous constituent is reached on the surface, this constituent is likely to freeze out until equilibrium between ice and vapour/liquid is reached. Important greenhouse gases which are essential for habitability considerations are water (triple point 6.5 mb, 273 K) and carbon dioxide (triple point 5.18 bar, 216 K). In our work we apply a 1D radiative-convective model to Super-Earth atmospheres. We investigate the effect of varying orbital distance, stellar type and planetary mass upon the ability of water and carbon dioxide to remain in the atmosphere. Our results indicate a threshold regime where atmospheres switch from being CO2-rich to being N2-dominated. Implications for habitability and surface conditions are discussed.

  14. Atmospheric nitrogen evolution on Earth and Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wordsworth, R. D.

    2016-08-01

    Nitrogen is the most common element in Earth's atmosphere and also appears to be present in significant amounts in the mantle. However, its long-term cycling between these two reservoirs remains poorly understood. Here a range of biotic and abiotic mechanisms are evaluated that could have caused nitrogen exchange between Earth's surface and interior over time. In the Archean, biological nitrogen fixation was likely strongly limited by nutrient and/or electron acceptor constraints. Abiotic fixation of dinitrogen becomes efficient in strongly reducing atmospheres, but only once temperatures exceed around 1000 K. Hence if atmospheric N2 levels really were as low as they are today 3.0-3.5 Ga, the bulk of Earth's mantle nitrogen must have been emplaced in the Hadean, most likely at a time when the surface was molten. The elevated atmospheric N content on Venus compared to Earth can be explained abiotically by a water loss redox pump mechanism, where oxygen liberated from H2O photolysis and subsequent H loss to space oxidises the mantle, causing enhanced outgassing of nitrogen. This mechanism has implications for understanding the partitioning of other Venusian volatiles and atmospheric evolution on exoplanets.

  15. Atmospheric neutrino oscillations for Earth tomography

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Winter, Walter

    2016-07-01

    Modern proposed atmospheric neutrino oscillation experiments, such as PINGU in the Antarctic ice or ORCA in Mediterranean sea water, aim for precision measurements of the oscillation parameters including the ordering of the neutrino masses. They can, however, go far beyond that: Since neutrino oscillations are affected by the coherent forward scattering with matter, neutrinos can provide a new view on the interior of the earth. We show that the proposed atmospheric oscillation experiments can measure the lower mantle density of the earth with a precision at the level of a few percent, including the uncertainties of the oscillation parameters and correlations among different density layers. While the earth's core is, in principle, accessible by the angular resolution, new technology would be required to extract degeneracy-free information.

  16. Life and the evolution of Earth's atmosphere.

    PubMed

    Kasting, James F; Siefert, Janet L

    2002-05-10

    Harvesting light to produce energy and oxygen (photosynthesis) is the signature of all land plants. This ability was co-opted from a precocious and ancient form of life known as cyanobacteria. Today these bacteria, as well as microscopic algae, supply oxygen to the atmosphere and churn out fixed nitrogen in Earth's vast oceans. Microorganisms may also have played a major role in atmosphere evolution before the rise of oxygen. Under the more dim light of a young sun cooler than today's, certain groups of anaerobic bacteria may have been pumping out large amounts of methane, thereby keeping the early climate warm and inviting. The evolution of Earth's atmosphere is linked tightly to the evolution of its biota.

  17. Coupling of Earth's Atmosphere and Ionosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Singh, A. K.

    2012-12-01

    The coupling between the Earth's atmosphere and ionosphere is very complex and many aspects are not well understood till date. Recent measurements show that coupling influences both the electron density and electrical conductivity. The ionosphere reacts to various natural hazards related phenomena such as lightening discharges, thunderstorms, high-power explosion, earthquakes, volcano eruptions, and typhoons through a chain of interconnected processes in the lithosphere-atmosphere-ionosphere interaction system. The precipitation of magnetospheric electrons affects higher latitudes while the radioactive elements emitted during the earthquakes affect electron density and conductivity in the lower atmosphere. Thunderstorms and lightning discharges play a major role in transferring energy from the atmosphere to the ionosphere and in establishing electrical coupling between atmosphere and ionosphere through the global electric circuit (GEC). Electrical processes occurring in the atmosphere couple the atmosphere and ionosphere, because both DC and AC effects operate at the speed of light. The electrostatic and electromagnetic field changes in global electric circuit arise from thunderstorm, lightning discharges, and optical emissions in the mesosphere. In the present paper, our present understanding of how various processes play pivotal role in energy transfer from the lower atmosphere to the ionosphere would be briefly reviewed.

  18. Oxidants and oxidation in the Earth's atmosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1995-01-01

    The 1994 BOC Priestley Conference was held at Bucknell University in Lewisburg, Pennsylvania, from June 24 through June 27, 1994. This conference, managed by the American Chemical Society (ACS), was a joint celebration with the Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC) commemorating Joseph Priestley's arrival in the U.S. and his discovery of oxygen. The basic theme of the conference was 'Oxidants and Oxidation in the Earth's Atmosphere,' with a keynote lecture on the history of ozone. A distinguished group of U.S. and international atmospheric chemists addressed the issues dominating current research and policy agendas. Topics crucial to the atmospheric chemistry of global change and local and regional air pollution were discussed. The program for the conference included four technical sessions on the following topics: (1) Oxidative Fate of Atmospheric Pollutants; (2) Photochemical Smog and Ozone; (3) Stratospheric Ozone; and (4) Global Tropospheric Ozone.

  19. Simulating Super Earth Atmospheres in the Laboratory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Claudi, R.; Erculiani, S. M.

    2014-03-01

    The "Atmosphere in a Test Tube" project is a laboratory experiment that will be able to reproduce condition of extreme environments by means of a simulator. These conditions span from those existing inside some parts of the human body to combinations of temperatures, pressures, irradiation and atmospheric gases present on other planets. In this latter case the experiments to be performed will be useful as preliminary tests for both simulation of atmosphere of exoplanets and Solar System planets and Astrobiology experiments that should be performed by planetary landers or by instruments to be launched in the next years. In particular at INAF Astronomical Observatory of Padova Laboratory we are approaching the characterization of extrasolar planet atmospheres taking advantage by innovative laboratory experiments with a particular focus on low mass Neptunes and Super earths and low mass M dwarfs primaries.

  20. Atmospheric influence of Earth's earliest sulfur cycle

    PubMed

    Farquhar; Bao; Thiemens

    2000-08-01

    Mass-independent isotopic signatures for delta(33)S, delta(34)S, and delta(36)S from sulfide and sulfate in Precambrian rocks indicate that a change occurred in the sulfur cycle between 2090 and 2450 million years ago (Ma). Before 2450 Ma, the cycle was influenced by gas-phase atmospheric reactions. These atmospheric reactions also played a role in determining the oxidation state of sulfur, implying that atmospheric oxygen partial pressures were low and that the roles of oxidative weathering and of microbial oxidation and reduction of sulfur were minimal. Atmospheric fractionation processes should be considered in the use of sulfur isotopes to study the onset and consequences of microbial fractionation processes in Earth's early history.

  1. [Photosynthesis and oxygenation of the earth's atmosphere].

    PubMed

    Kuznetsov, A P; Vinogradov, M E; Lappo, S S

    2002-01-01

    Based on the contemporary data concerning photosynthesis as a global biogeochemical mechanism of solar energy utilization and organic matter and oxygen production, the formation of photosynthesis in the Proterozoic is considered, as well as its role in transformation of the pre-Proterozoic oceanic hydrosphere and the Earth's atmosphere from a reduced to an oxidized state. Photosynthesis is considered the longest stage of organic world evolution. The problem of production of "excessive" oxygen is considered, which entered and is entering the atmosphere through the oceanic hydrosphere and determines the process of its organization.

  2. [How did the earth's oxygen atmosphere originate?].

    PubMed

    Schäfer, G

    2004-09-01

    The planet earth did not carry an oxygen atmosphere from the beginning. Though oxygen could arise from radiation mediated water splitting, these processes were not efficient enough to create a global gas atmosphere. Oxygen in the latter is a product of the photosynthetic activity of early green organisms. Only after biological mass-formation of oxygen the UV-protective ozone layer could develop, then enabeling life to move from water onto land. This took billions of years. The basics of the processes of biological oxygen liberation and utilization are described in the following as well as the importance of their steady state equilibrium. Also a hint is given to oxygen as a toxic compound though being a chemical prerequisite for aerobic life on earth.

  3. Cosmic dust in the earth's atmosphere.

    PubMed

    Plane, John M C

    2012-10-01

    This review discusses the magnitude of the cosmic dust input into the earth's atmosphere, and the resulting impacts from around 100 km to the earth's surface. Zodiacal cloud observations and measurements made with a spaceborne dust detector indicate a daily mass input of interplanetary dust particles ranging from 100 to 300 tonnes, which is in agreement with the accumulation rates of cosmic-enriched elements (Ir, Pt, Os and super-paramagnetic Fe) in polar ice cores and deep-sea sediments. In contrast, measurements in the middle atmosphere - by radar, lidar, high-flying aircraft and satellite remote sensing - indicate that the input is between 5 and 50 tonnes per day. There are two reasons why this huge discrepancy matters. First, if the upper range of estimates is correct, then vertical transport in the middle atmosphere must be considerably faster than generally believed; whereas if the lower range is correct, then our understanding of dust evolution in the solar system, and transport from the middle atmosphere to the surface, will need substantial revision. Second, cosmic dust particles enter the atmosphere at high speeds and undergo significant ablation. The resulting metals injected into the atmosphere are involved in a diverse range of phenomena, including: the formation of layers of metal atoms and ions; the nucleation of noctilucent clouds, which are a sensitive marker of climate change; impacts on stratospheric aerosols and O(3) chemistry, which need to be considered against the background of a cooling stratosphere and geo-engineering plans to increase sulphate aerosol; and fertilization of the ocean with bio-available Fe, which has potential climate feedbacks.

  4. Comparing Earth and Titan's atmospheric inventory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bampasidis, Georgios; Coustenis, Athena; Solomonidou, Anezina; Moussas, Xenophon; Preka-Papadema, Panagiota

    2010-05-01

    Titan is currently the only confirmed exobiotic environment known to us. It is also perhaps the most intriguing object in our Solar System. Our understanding of Titan, and of the kronian system as a whole, has been greatly enhanced by the data returned by the Cassini/Huygens mission since 2004 and still operating on the spot. Thus, we know today that the thick atmosphere layer - covering the satellite's mysterious surface - is essentially made of nitrogen, with small amounts of methane and hydrogen. The combination among these mother molecules produces an exciting organic chemistry in Titan's atmosphere, with hydrocarbons and nitriles (one of the latter, HCN, is a prebiotic molecule). The organic chemistry, climate conditions, meteorology, methane cycle and other aspects of the surface make Titan an extremely important astrobiological place. We will summarize our current understanding of the analogues between Titan and Earth's atmospheres focusing on some compositional and climatological issues. After the Cassini/Huygens mission, there will remain several unanswered questions on the astrobiological aspects of the satellite that will require a future mission with an optimized orbital tour, specific in situ elements and advanced instrumentation, such as the Titan Saturn System Mission (Coustenis et al, 2009; Reh et al., 2009) studied in 2008. The TSSM orbiter with hi-resolution imagers and IR spectrometers onboard and the TSSM Montgolfier with an aerosol analyser and a meteorology package aboard will deeply investigate the Titan organic factory and its atmospheric diversity by performing long-term observations. Definitely, as Titan is a unique earth-like body in the solar system, the long experience of studying the terrestrial atmosphere gives us the tools to unveil the satellite's mysteries. On the other hand, Titan's science will significally contribute to the Earth's atmospheric knowledge, its evolution and chemistry and to the origin of life, as it certainly

  5. First Super-Earth Atmosphere Analysed

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2010-12-01

    The atmosphere around a super-Earth exoplanet has been analysed for the first time by an international team of astronomers using ESO's Very Large Telescope. The planet, which is known as GJ 1214b, was studied as it passed in front of its parent star and some of the starlight passed through the planet's atmosphere. We now know that the atmosphere is either mostly water in the form of steam or is dominated by thick clouds or hazes. The results will appear in the 2 December 2010 issue of the journal Nature. The planet GJ 1214b was confirmed in 2009 using the HARPS instrument on ESO's 3.6-metre telescope in Chile (eso0950) [1]. Initial findings suggested that this planet had an atmosphere, which has now been confirmed and studied in detail by an international team of astronomers, led by Jacob Bean (Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics), using the FORS instrument on ESO's Very Large Telescope. "This is the first super-Earth to have its atmosphere analysed. We've reached a real milestone on the road toward characterising these worlds," said Bean. GJ 1214b has a radius of about 2.6 times that of the Earth and is about 6.5 times as massive, putting it squarely into the class of exoplanets known as super-Earths. Its host star lies about 40 light-years from Earth in the constellation of Ophiuchus (the Serpent Bearer). It is a faint star [2], but it is also small, which means that the size of the planet is large compared to the stellar disc, making it relatively easy to study [3]. The planet travels across the disc of its parent star once every 38 hours as it orbits at a distance of only two million kilometres: about seventy times closer than the Earth orbits the Sun. To study the atmosphere, the team observed the light coming from the star as the planet passed in front of it [4]. During these transits, some of the starlight passes through the planet's atmosphere and, depending on the chemical composition and weather on the planet, specific wavelengths of light are

  6. Dynamic model of the Earth's upper atmosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Slowey, J. W.

    1984-01-01

    An initial modification to the MSF/J70 Thermospheric Model, in which the variations due to sudden geomagnetic disturbances upon the Earth's upper atmospheric density structure were modeled is presented. This dynamic model of the geomagnetic variation included is an improved version of one which SAO developed from the analysis of the ESRO 4 mass spectrometer data that was incorporated in the Jacchia 1977 model. The variation with geomagnetic local time as well as with geomagnetic latitude are included, and also the effects due to disturbance of the temperature profiles in the region of energy deposition.

  7. NASA Now: Earth’s Atmosphere: Earth Science Week

    NASA Video Gallery

    Dr. Kenneth Pickering talks about the composition of Earth’s atmosphere, how it protects life on Earth, and how it is interconnected with the Earth system. Pickering discusses findings from the D...

  8. NASA Now Minute: Earth’s Atmosphere: Earth Science Week

    NASA Video Gallery

    Dr. Kenneth Pickering talks about the composition of Earth’s atmosphere,how it protects life on Earth, and how it is interconnected with theEarth system. Pickering discusses findings from the D...

  9. Evolution of Earth&'s Atmosphere and Climate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kasting, J. F.

    2004-12-01

    Earth's climate prior to 2.5 Ga seems to have been, if anything, warmer than today (1,2), despite the faintness of the young Sun (3). The idea that the young Sun was 25-30 percent less bright has been bolstered by data on mass loss from young, solar-type stars (4). Sagan and Mullen (1) suggested many years ago that the warming required to offset low solar luminosity was provided by high concentrations of reduced greenhouse gases. Ammonia has since been shown to be photochemically unstable in low-O2 atmospheres (5), but methane is a viable candidate. Methane photolyzes only at wavelengths shorter than 145 nm, so it is long-lived in the absence of O2 and O3. Furthermore, it is produced by anaerobic bacteria (methanogens) that are thought to have evolved early in Earth history (6). A biological methane flux comparable to today's flux, ~500 Tg CH4/yr, could have been generated by methanogens living in an anaerobic early ocean and sediments (7). This flux should have increased once oxygenic photosynthesis evolved because of increased production and recycling of organic matter (8). An Archean methane flux equal to today's flux could have generated atmospheric CH4 concentrations in excess of 1000 ppmv (9). This, in turn, could have provided 30 degrees or more of greenhouse warming (10) enough to have kept the early Earth warm even if atmospheric CO2 was no higher than today. All of this does not imply that CO2 concentrations must have been low throughout the Archean. Indeed, siderite-coated stream pebbles imply that pCO2 was greater than 2.5,e10-3 bar, or ~7 times present, at 3.2 Ga (11). Atmospheric CO2 could have been much higher than this if the continents had formed slowly (12) and/or if subduction of carbonates was inhibited (13). The rise in O2 at ~2.3 Ga (14,15) brought an end to the methane greenhouse and may have triggered the Huronian glaciation (10). Although methane concentrations declined with the rise of O2, they may still have remained much higher than

  10. Laboratory investigation on super-Earths atmospheres

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Erculiani, M. S.; Claudi, R. U.; Lessio, L.; Farisato, G.; Giro, E.; Cocola, L.; Billi, D.; D'alessandro, M.; Pace, E.; Schierano, D.; Benatti, S.; Bonavita, M.; Galletta, G.

    2014-04-01

    In the framework of Atmosphere in a Test Tube, at the Astronomical Observatory of Padova (INAF) we are going to perform experiments aimed to understand the possible modification of the atmosphere by photosynthetic biota present on the planet surface. This goal can be achieved simulating M star planetary environmental conditions. The bacteria that are being studied are Acaryochloris marina, Chroococcidiopsis spp. and Halomicronema hingdechloris. Tests will be performed with LISA or MINI-LISA ambient simulator in the laboratory of the Padova Astronomic Observatory. In this paper we describe the whole road map to follow in order to perform experiments and to obtain useful data to be compared with the real ones that will be obtained by the future space missions. Starting by a fiducial experiment we will modify either environmental and thermodynamical properties in order to simulate both real irradiation by an M star and gas mixture mimicing super earths atmospheres. These laboratory tests could be used as a guideline in order to understand whether chemical disequilibrium of O2, CO2 and CH4 could be ascribed to biotic life forms.

  11. Atmospheric breakup of a small comet in the Earth's atmosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Teterev, A. V.; Misychenko, N. I.; Rudak, L. V.; Romanov, G. S.; Smetannikov, A. S.; Nemchinov, I. V.

    1993-01-01

    The aerodynamic stresses can lead to the deformation and even to destruction of the meteoroids during their flight through the atmosphere. The pressure at the blunt nose of the cosmic body moving at very high speed through the dense layers of the atmosphere may be much larger than the tensile or the compressive strength of the body. So the usage of the hydrodynamics theory is validated. The estimates show that the transverse velocity of the substance of the body U is of the order of (rho(sub a)/rho(sub o))(sup 1/2)V where V is the velocity of the body and rho(sub o) is its density, rho(sub a) is the density of the atmosphere. The separation of the fragments is larger than the diameter of the body D if D is less than D(sub c) = 2H(square root of rho(sub a)/rho(sub o)), where H is the characteristic scale of the atmosphere. For an icy body one obtains U = 1/30(V) and critical diameter D(sub C) = 500 m. The process of the disintegration of the body is still not fully understood and so one can use the numerical simulation to investigate it. Such simulations where conducted for the Venusian atmosphere and the gaseous equation of state of the body was used. For the Earth atmosphere for the velocity V = 50 km/s the pressure at the blunt nose of the body is 25 kbar, and is of the order of bulk modulus of compressibility of the water or ice. The realistic EOS of water in tabular form was used. It was assumed that the initial shape of the body was spherical and the initial diameter D(sub o) of the body is 200 m and so it is smaller than the critical diameter D(sub C). The initial kinetic energy of the icy body is equivalent to the energy of the explosion 1200 Mt of TNT. The results of the simulation of the deformation of the body during its vertical flight through the atmosphere and during its impact into the ocean are presented.

  12. Simulation of ablation in Earth atmospheric entry

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Keenan, James A.; Candler, Graham V.

    1993-01-01

    The process of ablation for Earth atmospheric entry is simulated using a computational approach that allows thermo-chemical nonequilibrium of the flow field and ablation gases. The heat pulse into the heat shield is modeled. The flowfield and graphite heat shield are coupled through surface mass and energy balances. The surface thermochemistry involves the oxidation of graphite and allows for catalytic recombination of diatomic oxygen. Steady-state simulations are performed on a one meter nose radius sphere at an altitude of 65/km and at freestream velocities of 8 km/s and 10 km/s. A transient simulation is performed at 65 km altitude and a freestream velocity of 10 km/s.

  13. High frequency excitation of Earth rotation parameters (ERP) from atmosphere.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xie, Boquan; Zheng, Dawei

    1996-06-01

    The data sets of Earth rotation parameters measured by space geodetic techniques and atmospheric angular momentum reduced by the global meteorological data from 1983 through 1992 are used to analyze and study the high frequency excitations of Earth rotation parameters for the length of day and polar motion up to the monthly time scale from the atmosphere. The main results are given.

  14. Extraterrestrial matter in the Earth atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Popova, Olga

    The Sub-Millimetre Radiometer (SMR) on board the Odin satellite, launched in February 2001, observes thermal emissions of stratospheric nitric oxide (NO) at the Earth limb in a band centred at 551.7GHz. As member of the NOx family, this species plays an important role in stratospheric ozone chemistry. At high altitudes in the thermosphere, NO is formed when N2 is dissociated by solar radiation and through energetic particle precipitation (e.g. auroral activity). Its spatio-temporal distribution is influenced by the global meridional circulation, in particular during polar night when the lifetime of NOx species is long enough that downward transported NOx can contribute to the NOy budget in the mesosphere and stratosphere. Global measurements of NO were performed by Odin/SMR on approximately one observation day per month from October 2003 to April 2007 and on a nearly weekly basis thereafter. This presentation focuses on a detailed description of the characteristics of the Odin observations. The derived Odin NO climatology is then analysed in relation to observed variability of middle atmospheric transport and solar radiation. Odin is a Swedish-led satellite project funded jointly by Sweden (SNSB), Canada (CSA), Fin-land (TEKES), and France (CNES), with support by the 3rd party mission programme of the European Space Agency (ESA).

  15. Interferometric Characterization of the Earth's Atmosphere from Lagrange Point 2

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Herman, J. R.; Einaudi, Franco (Technical Monitor)

    2001-01-01

    Part of the NASA plans for future Earth-Science missions calls for observations using novel vantage points that can produce science products otherwise unobtainable. Observations of the Earth from the Lagrange-2 point, L-2, (1.5 million kilometers behind the Earth on the Earth-Sun line) affords a unique vantage point for atmospheric science. Special observation of the Earth's atmosphere using solar occultation techniques in the near infrared (1 to 4 microns) provides one of the most accurate method of passively sensing altitude profiles of the major species (CO2, O3, O2, CH4, H2O, N2O). In addition to observation of the Earth's atmosphere, it will be possible to observe a portion of the solar disk at moderate spatial resolution without interference from the Earth.

  16. Atmospheric effects on measurements of distance to Earth artificial satellites

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kablak, N.; Klimyk, V.; Shvalagin, I.; Kablak, U.

    2005-06-01

    This paper is devoted to the problem of accuracy increasing in allowing for Earth's atmosphere influences on results of daily ranging observations of the Earth artificial satellites (ASE). Atmosphere delays and their spatial-timely variations for spherical-symmetrical and nonspherical models of atmosphere were determined radiosounding data gathered during a year in Ukraine region using, developed valuing and analysis of models reductions to over of atmosphere, which recommended of IERS for processing distance-ranging observations of the Earth artificial satellites. Investigated and improved models of reductions to over of the atmosphere on the basis of discovered regional and local peculiarity's of influence atmosphere on the laser and radio ranging observations of the Earth artificial satellites.

  17. Influence of meteor showers on Earth's upper atmosphere temperature

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Salivonov, A.; Kozak, L.

    2005-04-01

    The warming of night atmosphere of the Earth during action of meteor showers is analyzed. It was used a satellite measurements in Earth's upper atmosphere for the period of 1993 in height range 85-130 km. Temperature values were obtained with the help of device WINDII (Wind Imaging Interferometer) installed on the America-French satellite UARS (Upper Atmosphere Research Satellite). The most intensive meteor showers Perseids, Leonids, Orionids and Geminids were considered.

  18. Global Change in Earth's Atmosphere: Natural and Anthropogenic Factors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lean, J.

    2013-12-01

    To what extent is human activity, such as the emission of carbon dioxide and other 'greenhouse' gases, influencing Earth's atmosphere, compared with natural variations driven by, for example, the Sun or volcanoes? Why has Earth's surface warmed barely, if at all, in the last decade? Why is the atmosphere at just 20 km above the surface cooling instead of warming? When - and will - the ozone layer recover from its two-decade decline due to chlorofluorocarbon depletion? Natural and anthropogenic factors are changing Earth's atmosphere, each with distinct temporal, geographical and altitudinal signatures. Increasing greenhouse gases, for example, warm the surface but cool the stratosphere and upper atmosphere. Aerosols injected into the stratosphere during a volcanic eruption warm the stratosphere but cool the surface. Increases in the Sun's brightness warm Earth's atmosphere, throughout. This talk will quantify and compare a variety of natural and human influences on the Earth's atmosphere, extracted statistically from multiple datasets with the goal of understanding how and why Earth's atmosphere is changing. The extent to which responses to natural influences are presently masking or exacerbating ongoing responses to human activity is examined. Scenarios for future levels of anthropogenic gases and solar activity are then used to speculate how Earth's atmosphere might evolve in future decades, according to both statistical models of the databases and physical general circulation models.

  19. Telescope Formation at L2 for Observing Earth's Atmosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mettler, Edward; Acikmese, Behcet; Breckenridge, William; Macenka, Steven; Hein, Randall; Tubbs, Eldred

    2007-01-01

    Two documents describe a proposed Earth-atmosphere observatory to orbit the Sun at the Sun-Earth L2 Lagrange point -- a point of unstable equilibrium in the shadow of the Earth, about 1.5 million km from the Earth along an outward projection of the Earth-Sun axis. The observatory would comprise two spacecraft flying in precision formation: (1) a primary-aperture spacecraft, from which would be deployed a 25-m diameter membrane primary mirror aimed at the Earth, and (2) a secondary-telescope spacecraft at the focal plane of the primary mirror, 125-m distant along the axis towards the Earth. The secondary telescope would be aimed at the primary mirror and slowly rotated to scan the focused annular image of the visible illuminated portion of the Earth's atmosphere during continuous occultation of the Sun.

  20. ATMOS: Long term atmospheric measurements for mission to planet Earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1992-01-01

    A long-term, space-based measurement program, together with continued balloon and aircraft-borne investigations, is essential to monitor the predicted effects in the atmosphere, to determine to what extent the concentration measurements agree with current models of stratospheric chemistry, and to determine the condition of the ozone layer. The Atmospheric Trace Molecule Spectroscopy (ATMOS) Experiment is currently making comprehensive, global measurements of Earth's atmosphere as part of the Atmospheric Laboratory for Applications and Science (ATLAS) program on the Space Shuttle. Part of NASA's Mission to Planet Earth, ATLAS is a continuing series of missions to study Earth and the Sun and provide a more fundamental understanding of the solar influences on Earth's atmosphere. The ATMOS program, instruments, and science results are presented.

  1. Atmospheres and evolution. [of microbial life on earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Margulis, L.; Lovelock, J. E.

    1981-01-01

    Studies concerning the regulation of the earth atmosphere and the relation of atmospheric changes to the evolution of microbial life are reviewed. The improbable nature of the composition of the earth atmosphere in light of the atmospheric compositions of Mars and Venus and equilibrium considerations is pointed out, and evidence for the existence of microbial (procaryotic) life on earth as far back as 3.5 billion years ago is presented. The emergence of eucaryotic life in the Phanerozoic due to evolving symbioses between different procaryotic species is discussed with examples given of present-day symbiotic relationships between bacteria and eucaryotes. The idea that atmospheric gases are kept in balance mainly by the actions of bacterial cells is then considered, and it is argued that species diversity is necessary for the maintenance and origin of life on earth in its present form.

  2. STS-39 Earth observation of Earth's limb at sunset shows atmospheric layers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1991-01-01

    STS-39 Earth observation taken aboard Discovery, Orbiter Vehicle (OV) 103, shows the Earth's limb at sunset with numerous atmospheric scattering layers highlighted. The layers consist of fine particles suspended in very stable layers of the atmosphere. The layers act as a prism for the sunlight.

  3. ON THE STABILITY OF SUPER-EARTH ATMOSPHERES

    SciTech Connect

    Heng, Kevin; Kopparla, Pushkar

    2012-07-20

    We investigate the stability of super-Earth atmospheres around M stars using a seven-parameter, analytical framework. We construct stability diagrams in the parameter space of exoplanetary radius versus semimajor axis and elucidate the regions in which the atmospheres are stable against the condensation of their major constituents, out of the gas phase, on their permanent nightside hemispheres. We find that super-Earth atmospheres that are nitrogen-dominated (Earth-like) occupy a smaller region of allowed parameter space, compared to hydrogen-dominated atmospheres, because of the dual effects of diminished advection and enhanced radiative cooling. Furthermore, some super-Earths which reside within the habitable zones of M stars may not possess stable atmospheres, depending on the mean molecular weight and infrared photospheric pressure of their atmospheres. We apply our stability diagrams to GJ 436b and GJ 1214b, and demonstrate that atmospheric compositions with high mean molecular weights are disfavored if these exoplanets possess solid surfaces and shallow atmospheres. Finally, we construct stability diagrams tailored to the Kepler data set, for G and K stars, and predict that about half of the exoplanet candidates are expected to harbor stable atmospheres if Earth-like conditions are assumed. We include 55 Cancri e and CoRoT-7b in our stability diagram for G stars.

  4. Crossing the Boundaries in Planetary Atmospheres - From Earth to Exoplanets

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Simon-Miller, Amy A.; Genio, Anthony Del

    2013-01-01

    The past decade has been an especially exciting time to study atmospheres, with a renaissance in fundamental studies of Earths general circulation and hydrological cycle, stimulated by questions about past climates and the urgency of projecting the future impacts of humankinds activities. Long-term spacecraft and Earth-based observation of solar system planets have now reinvigorated the study of comparative planetary climatology. The explosion in discoveries of planets outside our solar system has made atmospheric science integral to understanding the diversity of our solar system and the potential habitability of planets outside it. Thus, the AGU Chapman Conference Crossing the Boundaries in Planetary Atmospheres From Earth to Exoplanets, held in Annapolis, MD from June 24-27, 2013 gathered Earth, solar system, and exoplanet scientists to share experiences, insights, and challenges from their individual disciplines, and discuss areas in which thinking broadly might enhance our fundamental understanding of how atmospheres work.

  5. Earth Global Reference Atmospheric Model 2007 (Earth-GRAM07)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Leslie, Fred W.; Justus, C. G.

    2008-01-01

    GRAM is a Fortran software package that can run on a variety of platforms including PC's. GRAM provides values of atmospheric quantities such as temperature, pressure, density, winds, constituents, etc. GRAM99 covers all global locations, all months, and heights from the surface to approx. 1000 km). Dispersions (perturbations) of these parameters are also provided and are spatially and temporally correlated. GRAM can be run in a stand-alone mode or called as a subroutine from a trajectory program. GRAM07 is diagnostic, not prognostic (i.e., it describes the atmosphere, but it does not forecast). The source code is distributed free-of-charge to eligible recipients.

  6. Space Science in Action: Earth's Atmosphere [Videotape].

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    1999

    In this videotape recording, students learn about the layers of the atmosphere and why each is important to the survival of life on the planet. Students discover why the atmosphere is responsible for weather and see how special aircraft actually fly into hurricanes. Students build their own working barometer in a hands-on activity. Contents…

  7. Energetic particle influences in Earth's atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aplin, Karen; Harrison, R. Giles; Nicoll, Keri; Rycroft, Michael; Briggs, Aaron

    2016-04-01

    Energetic particles from outer space, known as galactic cosmic rays, constantly ionise the entire atmosphere. During strong solar storms, solar energetic particles can also reach the troposphere and enhance ionisation. Atmospheric ionisation generates cluster ions. These facilitate current flow in the global electric circuit, which arises from charge separation in thunderstorms driven by meteorological processes. Energetic particles, whether solar or galactic in origin, may influence the troposphere and stratosphere through a range of different mechanisms, each probably contributing a small amount. Some of the suggested processes potentially acting over a wide spatial area in the troposphere include enhanced scavenging of charged aerosol particles, modification of droplet or droplet-droplet behavior by charging, and the direct absorption of infra-red radiation by the bending and stretching of hydrogen bonds inside atmospheric cluster-ions. As well as reviewing the proposed mechanisms by which energetic particles modulate atmospheric properties, we will also discuss new instrumentation for measurement of energetic particles in the atmosphere.

  8. Atmospherics: A Look at the Earth's Airy Shell.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Byalko, A. V.

    1991-01-01

    Describes differences in the composition, pressure, and temperature at distinct altitudes of the Earth's atmosphere from the point of view of physical laws. Discusses the genesis and importance of ozone, thermal radiation and the "layer cake" arrangement of the atmosphere, and solar energy in connection with thermal equilibrium. (JJK)

  9. Expedition Seven Takes Breathtaking Photo of Earth's Atmosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2003-01-01

    This Expedition Seven image, taken while aboard the International Space Station (ISS), shows the limb of the Earth at the bottom transitioning into the orange-colored stratosphere, the lowest and most dense portion of the Earth's atmosphere. The troposphere ends abruptly at the tropopause, which appears in the image as the sharp boundary between the orange- and blue-colored atmosphere. The silvery blue noctilucent clouds extend far above the Earth's troposphere. The silver of the setting moon is visible at upper right.

  10. CHEMISTRY OF SILICATE ATMOSPHERES OF EVAPORATING SUPER-EARTHS

    SciTech Connect

    Schaefer, Laura; Fegley, Bruce E-mail: bfegley@levee.wustl.ed

    2009-10-01

    We model the formation of silicate atmospheres on hot volatile-free super-Earths. Our calculations assume that all volatile elements such as H, C, N, S, and Cl have been lost from the planet. We find that the atmospheres are composed primarily of Na, O{sub 2}, O, and SiO gas, in order of decreasing abundance. The atmospheric composition may be altered by fractional vaporization, cloud condensation, photoionization, and reaction with any residual volatile elements remaining in the atmosphere. Cloud condensation reduces the abundance of all elements in the atmosphere except Na and K. We speculate that large Na and K clouds such as those observed around Mercury and Io may surround hot super-Earths. These clouds would occult much larger fractions of the parent star than a closely bound atmosphere, and may be observable through currently available methods.

  11. The chemical composition and climatology of the earth's early atmosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Henderson-Sellers, A.

    1983-01-01

    The earth's climate as it relates to the evolution of life is discussed.. Seven fundamental characteristics of the early evolutionary environment are examined, including a carbon dioxide and water vapor atmosphere, atmospheric mass between 500 and 1000 mb, a global hydrosphere, lowered solar luminosity, hospitable average global temperatures, a convectively active atmosphere, and trace gases. The influence of the early earth's extensive hydrosphere on the origin of life is considered. The warming of that hydrosphere due to radiative fluxes and the greenhouse effect is examined, and the nature of the feedback between clouds and climate is addressed.

  12. The rise of oxygen in Earth's early ocean and atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lyons, Timothy W.; Reinhard, Christopher T.; Planavsky, Noah J.

    2014-02-01

    The rapid increase of carbon dioxide concentration in Earth's modern atmosphere is a matter of major concern. But for the atmosphere of roughly two-and-half billion years ago, interest centres on a different gas: free oxygen (O2) spawned by early biological production. The initial increase of O2 in the atmosphere, its delayed build-up in the ocean, its increase to near-modern levels in the sea and air two billion years later, and its cause-and-effect relationship with life are among the most compelling stories in Earth's history.

  13. The rise of oxygen in Earth's early ocean and atmosphere.

    PubMed

    Lyons, Timothy W; Reinhard, Christopher T; Planavsky, Noah J

    2014-02-20

    The rapid increase of carbon dioxide concentration in Earth's modern atmosphere is a matter of major concern. But for the atmosphere of roughly two-and-half billion years ago, interest centres on a different gas: free oxygen (O2) spawned by early biological production. The initial increase of O2 in the atmosphere, its delayed build-up in the ocean, its increase to near-modern levels in the sea and air two billion years later, and its cause-and-effect relationship with life are among the most compelling stories in Earth's history.

  14. Propagation of sound through the Earth's atmosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Meredith, R. W.; Becher, J.

    1983-01-01

    The data collected at a pressure of one atmosphere for the different temperatures and relative humidities of the air-water vapor mixtures is summarized. The dew point hygrometer used in these measurements did not give reliable results for dew points much above the ambient room temperature. For this reason measurements were not attempted at the higher temperatures and humidities. Viscous wall losses in the resonant tube at 0 C so dominate the molecular relaxation of nitrogen, in the air-water vapor mixture, that reliable data could not be obtained using the free decay method in a resonant tube at one atmosphere. In an effort to obtain viable data at these temperatures, measurements were performed at a pressure of 10 atmospheres. Since the molecular relaxation peak is proportional to the pressure and the viscous losses are proportional to the inverse square root of the pressure the peak height should be measurable at the higher pressure. The tradeoff here is that at 10 atmospheres; the highest relative humidity attainable is 10 percent. The data collected at 10 atmospheres is also summarized.

  15. Earth Global Reference Atmospheric Model (GRAM99): Short Course

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Leslie, Fred W.; Justus, C. G.

    2007-01-01

    Earth-GRAM is a FORTRAN software package that can run on a variety of platforms including PC's. For any time and location in the Earth's atmosphere, Earth-GRAM provides values of atmospheric quantities such as temperature, pressure, density, winds, constituents, etc.. Dispersions (perturbations) of these parameters are also provided and have realistic correlations, means, and variances - useful for Monte Carlo analysis. Earth-GRAM is driven by observations including a tropospheric database available from the National Climatic Data Center. Although Earth-GRAM can be run in a "stand-alone" mode, many users incorporate it into their trajectory codes. The source code is distributed free-of-charge to eligible recipients.

  16. WATER FORMATION IN THE UPPER ATMOSPHERE OF THE EARLY EARTH

    SciTech Connect

    Fleury, Benjamin; Carrasco, Nathalie; Marcq, Emmanuel; Vettier, Ludovic; Määttänen, Anni

    2015-07-10

    The water concentration and distribution in the early Earth's atmosphere are important parameters that contribute to the chemistry and the radiative budget of the atmosphere. If the atmosphere above the troposphere is generally considered as dry, photochemistry is known to be responsible for the production of numerous minor species. Here we used an experimental setup to study the production of water in conditions simulating the chemistry above the troposphere of the early Earth with an atmospheric composition based on three major molecules: N{sub 2}, CO{sub 2}, and H{sub 2}. The formation of gaseous products was monitored using infrared spectroscopy. Water was found as the major product, with approximately 10% of the gas products detected. This important water formation is discussed in the context of the early Earth.

  17. Evolution of a steam atmosphere during earth's accretion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zahnle, Kevin J.; Kasting, James F.; Pollack, James B.

    1988-01-01

    The evolution of an impact-generated steam atmosphere around an accreting earth is presently modeled under the assumption of Safronov (1978) accretion, in a scheme that encompasses the degassing of planetesimals on impact, thermal blanketing by the steam atmosphere, surface-to-interior water exchange, the shock heating and convective cooling of the earth's interior, and hydrogen escape due both to solar EUV-powered planetary wind and impact erosion. The model yields four distinct classes of impact-generated atmospheres: the first, on which emphasis is placed, has as its salient feature a molten surface that is maintained by the opacity of a massive water vapor atmosphere; the second occurs when the EUV-limited escape exceeds the impact degassing rate, while the third is dominated by impact erosion and the fourth is characterized by an atmosphere more massive than any thus far encountered.

  18. Simulation of Venus Atmosphere Dynamics With an Earth Climate GCM

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Parish, H. F.; Schubert, G.; Covey, C. C.; Grossman, A.

    2008-12-01

    We describe the results of initial simulations of the Venusian atmosphere, using the Community Atmosphere Model (CAM). The CAM model is a descendant of the NCAR Community Climate Model, and is defined as one of two "high-end" models designated by the US Climate Change Science Program for basic research. It may also be the most widely used 3D climate model in the US. CAM has grown substantially in complexity and Earth-specificity since the original version was released in 1983, and many of these Earth based physics parameterizations need to be adjusted to simulate the Venus atmosphere. Other groups are adapting CAM to simulate the atmospheres of Mars and Titan, thereby promising CAM simulation for all four terrestrial planets known to have substantial atmospheres. Studying these worlds together will provide calibration of Earth-centric studies of climate changes like global warming. It will also provide context for future searches for Earth-like planets orbiting other stars. In this work we will focus on Venus. The Venus atmosphere represents an extreme environment, strongly influenced by the greenhouse effect, and studying the Venus atmosphere may therefore be relevant to the possible future direction of the Earth's climate. The dynamical processes which occur in the Venusian atmosphere are not well understood, including the cause of the strong superrotation of the atmosphere, in which the planetary surface rotates with a period of around 243 days, but the atmosphere near the cloud tops has a rotational period of only around 4 days. We show the results of initial simulations of the dynamics of the Venus atmosphere, using a version of the CAM model with most of the Earth related processes, such as the cloud physics, removed. A simplified form of heating has been applied, similar to the thermal forcing approach used recently by other authors. We investigate the sensitivity of the model results to changes in the physics parameterizations we have used, including

  19. Clouds in Super-Earth Atmospheres: Chemical Equilibrium Calculations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mbarek, Rostom; Kempton, Eliza M.-R.

    2016-08-01

    Recent studies have unequivocally proven the existence of clouds in super-Earth atmospheres. Here we provide a theoretical context for the formation of super-Earth clouds by determining which condensates are likely to form under the assumption of chemical equilibrium. We study super-Earth atmospheres of diverse bulk composition, which are assumed to form by outgassing from a solid core of chondritic material, following Schaefer & Fegley. The super-Earth atmospheres that we study arise from planetary cores made up of individual types of chondritic meteorites. They range from highly reducing to oxidizing and have carbon to oxygen (C:O) ratios that are both sub-solar and super-solar, thereby spanning a range of atmospheric composition that is appropriate for low-mass exoplanets. Given the atomic makeup of these atmospheres, we minimize the global Gibbs free energy of formation for over 550 gases and condensates to obtain the molecular composition of the atmospheres over a temperature range of 350-3000 K. Clouds should form along the temperature-pressure boundaries where the condensed species appear in our calculation. We find that the composition of condensate clouds depends strongly on both the H:O and C:O ratios. For the super-Earth archetype GJ 1214b, KCl and ZnS are the primary cloud-forming condensates at solar composition, in agreement with previous work. However, for oxidizing atmospheres, K2SO4 and ZnO condensates are favored instead, and for carbon-rich atmospheres with super-solar C:O ratios, graphite clouds appear. For even hotter planets, clouds form from a wide variety of rock-forming and metallic species.

  20. Clouds in Super-Earth Atmospheres: Chemical Equilibrium Calculations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mbarek, Rostom; Kempton, Eliza M.-R.

    2016-08-01

    Recent studies have unequivocally proven the existence of clouds in super-Earth atmospheres. Here we provide a theoretical context for the formation of super-Earth clouds by determining which condensates are likely to form under the assumption of chemical equilibrium. We study super-Earth atmospheres of diverse bulk composition, which are assumed to form by outgassing from a solid core of chondritic material, following Schaefer & Fegley. The super-Earth atmospheres that we study arise from planetary cores made up of individual types of chondritic meteorites. They range from highly reducing to oxidizing and have carbon to oxygen (C:O) ratios that are both sub-solar and super-solar, thereby spanning a range of atmospheric composition that is appropriate for low-mass exoplanets. Given the atomic makeup of these atmospheres, we minimize the global Gibbs free energy of formation for over 550 gases and condensates to obtain the molecular composition of the atmospheres over a temperature range of 350–3000 K. Clouds should form along the temperature–pressure boundaries where the condensed species appear in our calculation. We find that the composition of condensate clouds depends strongly on both the H:O and C:O ratios. For the super-Earth archetype GJ 1214b, KCl and ZnS are the primary cloud-forming condensates at solar composition, in agreement with previous work. However, for oxidizing atmospheres, K2SO4 and ZnO condensates are favored instead, and for carbon-rich atmospheres with super-solar C:O ratios, graphite clouds appear. For even hotter planets, clouds form from a wide variety of rock-forming and metallic species.

  1. Explosions of small Spacewatch objects in the Earth's atmosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chyba, Christopher F.

    1993-01-01

    It is shown here that explosions due to Spacewatch objects with diameters less than 50 m typically occur too high in the atmosphere to cause substantial surface damage. Exclusive of relatively rare iron objects, no comet or asteroid with an energy below about 2 megatons threatens the Earth's surface. The high flux of small Earth-crossing objects identified by Spacewatch therefore does not imply a greater terrestrial hazard.

  2. Clouds Composition in Super-Earth Atmospheres: Chemical Equilibrium Calculations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kempton, Eliza M.-R.; Mbarek, Rostom

    2015-12-01

    Attempts to determine the composition of super-Earth atmospheres have so far been plagued by the presence of clouds. Yet the theoretical framework to understand these clouds is still in its infancy. For the super-Earth archetype GJ 1214b, KCl, Na2S, and ZnS have been proposed as condensates that would form under the condition of chemical equilibrium, if the planet’s atmosphere has a bulk composition near solar. Condensation chemistry calculations have not been presented for a wider range of atmospheric bulk composition that is to be expected for super-Earth exoplanets. Here we provide a theoretical context for the formation of super-Earth clouds in atmospheres of varied composition by determining which condensates are likely to form, under the assumption of chemical equilibrium. We model super-Earth atmospheres assuming they are formed by degassing of volatiles from a solid planetary core of chondritic material. Given the atomic makeup of these atmospheres, we minimize the global Gibbs free energy of over 550 gases and condensates to obtain the molecular composition of the atmospheres over a temperature range of 350-3,000 K. Clouds should form along the temperature-pressure boundaries where the condensed species appear in our calculations. The super-Earth atmospheres that we study range from highly reducing to oxidizing and have carbon to oxygen (C:O) ratios that are both sub-solar and super-solar, thereby spanning a diverse range of atmospheric composition that is appropriate for low-mass exoplanets. Some condensates appear across all of our models. However, the majority of condensed species appear only over specific ranges of H:O and C:O ratios. We find that for GJ 1214b, KCl is the primary cloud-forming condensate at solar composition, in agreement with previous work. However, for oxidizing atmospheres, where H:O is less than unity, K2SO4 clouds form instead. For carbon-rich atmospheres with super-solar C:O ratios, graphite clouds additionally appear. At

  3. VAPORIZATION OF THE EARTH: APPLICATION TO EXOPLANET ATMOSPHERES

    SciTech Connect

    Schaefer, Laura; Lodders, Katharina; Fegley, Bruce E-mail: lschaefer@cfa.harvard.edu E-mail: bfegley@wustl.edu

    2012-08-10

    Currently, there are about three dozen known super-Earths (M < 10 M{sub Circled-Plus }), of which eight are transiting planets suitable for atmospheric follow-up observations. Some of the planets are exposed to extreme temperatures as they orbit close to their host stars, e.g., CoRot-7b, and all of these planets have equilibrium temperatures significantly hotter than the Earth. Such planets can develop atmospheres through (partial) vaporization of their crustal and/or mantle silicates. We investigated the chemical equilibrium composition of such heated systems from 500 to 4000 K and total pressures from 10{sup -6} to 10{sup +2} bars. The major gases are H{sub 2}O and CO{sub 2} over broad temperature and pressure ranges, and Na, K, O{sub 2}, SiO, and O at high temperatures and low pressures. We discuss the differences in atmospheric composition arising from vaporization of SiO{sub 2}-rich (i.e., felsic) silicates (like Earth's continental crust) and MgO-, FeO-rich (i.e., mafic) silicates (like the bulk silicate Earth). The computational results will be useful in planning spectroscopic studies of the atmospheres of Earth-like exoplanets.

  4. Earth Global Reference Atmospheric Model 2007 (Earth-GRAM07) Applications for the NASA Constellation Program

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Leslie, Fred W.; Justus, C. G.

    2008-01-01

    Engineering models of the atmosphere are used extensively by the aerospace community for design issues related to vehicle ascent and descent. The Earth Global Reference Atmosphere Model version 2007 (Earth-GRAM07) is the latest in this series and includes a number of new features. Like previous versions, Earth-GRAM07 provides both mean values and perturbations for density, temperature, pressure, and winds, as well as monthly- and geographically-varying trace constituent concentrations. From 0 km to 27 km, thermodynamics and winds are based on the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Global Upper Air Climatic Atlas (GUACA) climatology. For altitudes between 20 km and 120 km, the model uses data from the Middle Atmosphere Program (MAP). Above 120 km, EarthGRAM07 now provides users with a choice of three thermosphere models: the Marshall Engineering Thermosphere (MET-2007) model; the Jacchia-Bowman 2006 thermosphere model (JB2006); and the Naval Research Labs Mass Spectrometer, Incoherent Scatter Radar Extended Model (NRL MSIS E-OO) with the associated Harmonic Wind Model (HWM-93). In place of these datasets, Earth-GRAM07 has the option of using the new 2006 revised Range Reference Atmosphere (RRA) data, the earlier (1983) RRA data, or the user may also provide their own data as an auxiliary profile. Refinements of the perturbation model are also discussed which include wind shears more similar to those observed at the Kennedy Space Center than the previous version Earth-GRAM99.

  5. Earth and Mars: evolution of atmospheres and surface temperatures.

    PubMed

    Sagan, C; Mullen, G

    1972-07-01

    Solar evolution implies, for contemporary albedos and atmospheric composition, global mean temperatures below the freezing point of seawater less than 2.3 aeons ago, contrary to geologic and paleontological evidence. Ammonia mixing ratios of the order of a few parts per million in the middle Precambrian atmosphere resolve this and other problems. Possible temperature evolutionary tracks for Earth and Mars are described. A runaway greenhouse efect will occur on Earth about 4.5 aeons from now, when clement conditions will prevail on Mars. PMID:17756316

  6. COMPOSITIONS OF HOT SUPER-EARTH ATMOSPHERES: EXPLORING KEPLER CANDIDATES

    SciTech Connect

    Miguel, Y.; Kaltenegger, L.; Fegley, B.; Schaefer, L.

    2011-12-15

    This paper outlines a simple approach to evaluate the atmospheric composition of hot rocky planets by assuming different types of planetary composition and using corresponding model calculations. To explore hot atmospheres above 1000 K, we model the vaporization of silicate magma and estimate the range of atmospheric compositions according to the planet's radius and semi-major axis for the Kepler 2011 February data release. Our results show five atmospheric types for hot, rocky super-Earth atmospheres, strongly dependent on the initial composition and the planet's distance to the star. We provide a simple set of parameters that can be used to evaluate atmospheric compositions for current and future candidates provided by the Kepler mission and other searches.

  7. Water inventories on Earth and Mars: Clues to atmosphere formation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Carr, M. H.

    1992-01-01

    Water is distributed differently on Earth and on Mars and the differences may have implications for the accretion of the two planets and the formation of their atmospheres. The Earth's mantle appears to contain at least several times the water content of the Martian mantle even accounting for differences in plate tectonics. One explanation is that the Earth's surface melted during accretion, as a result of development of a steam atmosphere, thereby allowing impact-devolitalized water at the surface to dissolve into the Earth's interior. In contrast, because of Mars' smaller size and greater distance from the Sun, the Martian surface may not have melted, so that the devolatilized water could not dissolve into the surface. A second possibility is suggested by the siderophile elements in the Earth's mantle, which indicates the Earth acquired a volatile-rich veneer after the core formed. Mars may have acquired a late volatile-rich veneer, but it did not get folded into the interior as with the Earth, but instead remained as a water rich veneer. This perception of Mars with a wet surface but dry interior is consistent with our knowledge of Mars' geologic history.

  8. Lunar laser ranging and limits due to the Earth's atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Currie, Douglas; Prochazka, Ivan

    2015-10-01

    The ultimate limits on high accuracy laser ranging to satellites from the ground appear to be caused by the effects of the earth's atmosphere. Other impediments in terms of lasers, timing equipment and calibration seem to be evolving to the point of providing very high accuracy. We shall address the role of the earth's atmosphere for lunar laser ranging. In the near future, the robotic deployment of next generation lunar laser retroreflectors is planned. With proper robotic deployment, these retroreflectors may support single photo-electron ranging accuracy at the 100 micron level or better. In particular, there are questions of the random and systematic delays and broadening of a very narrow laser pulse. Theoretical and experimental results will be discussed that address estimates of the magnitudes of these effects and the issue of precision vs. accuracy. These effects may be roughly divided into three domains: High frequency effects due to atmospheric turbulence, low frequency effects due to atmospheric "slopes" and atmospheric waves and tides and spectral dispersion of the narrow pulse. In conclusion, the route to better ranging through the earth's atmosphere appears to be more advance modeling of local meteorological effects, in a program that can be implemented at a reasonable cost.

  9. Primitive Xe in the atmospheres of Earth and mars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Igarashi, G.

    1994-01-01

    Published data on Xe isotope compositions in primitive carbonaceous meteorites are examined using multidimensional correlation analysis. Distribution of the Xe data in multidimensional data space, except for (129)Xe, can be characterized by a single component, whose isotope composition is identical to 'H plus L minus Xe'. Additional small contributions to the data variations, less than 1 percent of total variations, can be attributed to 'S minus Xe' as well as atmospheric contamination. Isotopic composition of primitive Xe common to the Earth's atmosphere and carbonaceous meteorites are determined with the same assumption as adopted by Pepin and Phinney: primitive Xe is precisely related to fission-free Xe in the Earth's atmosphere by mass fractionation. The determined isotopic composition of primitive Xe is closer to Solar-type Xe, rather than U-Xe (and the primitive Xe estimated from chondrite-achondrite correlation. Hence, the present published data on Xe isotope compositions in meteorites do not seem to require any special component for the primitive Xe common to the Earth's atmosphere and carbonaceous meteorites. Thus Earth's accreting planetesimals would have trapped Xe from the surrounding nebula gases where Xe isotope composition is identical to Solar-type Xe. The trapped Xe was subsequently subject to isotopic fractionation due to gravitational separation as planetesimals grew. Finally fissiogenic Xe from (244)Pu was added to form the present Xe isotope composition of the Earth's atmosphere. The amount of fissiogenic (136)Xe is estimated to be 2.6 percent of the total amount of (136)Xe in the atmosphere, which is about a half of that estimated by Pepin and Phinney (4.65 percent).

  10. Comment on "A hydrogen-rich early Earth atmosphere".

    PubMed

    Catling, David C

    2006-01-01

    Tian et al. (Reports, 13 May 2005, p. 1014) proposed a hydrogen-rich early atmosphere with slow hydrogen escape from a cold thermosphere. However, their model neglects the ultraviolet absorption of all gases other than H2. The model also neglects Earth's magnetic field, which affects the temperature and density of ions and promotes nonthermal escape of neutral hydrogen.

  11. Atmospheres of partially differentiated super-Earth exoplanets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schaefer, Laura; Sasselov, Dimitar

    2015-11-01

    Terrestrial exoplanets have been discovered in a range of sizes, densities and orbital locations that defy our expectations based upon the Solar System. Planets discovered to date with radii less than ~1.5-1.6 Earth radii all seem to fall on an iso-density curve with the Earth [1]. However, mass and radius determinations, which depend on the known properties of the host star, are not accurate enough to distinguish between a fully differentiated three-layer planet (core, mantle, ocean/atmosphere) and an incompletely differentiated planet [2]. Full differentiation of a planet will depend upon the conditions at the time of accretion, including the abundance of short-lived radioisotopes, which will vary from system to system, as well as the number of giant impacts the planet experiences. Furthermore, separation of metal and silicates at the much larger pressures found inside super-Earths will depend on how the chemistry of these materials change at high pressures. There are therefore hints emerging that not all super-Earths will be fully differentiated. Incomplete differentiation will result in a more reduced mantle oxidation state and may have implications for the composition of an outgassed atmosphere. Here we will present the first results from a chemical equilibrium model of the composition of such an outgassed atmosphere and discuss the possibility of distinguishing between fully and incompletely differentiated planets through atmospheric observations.[1] Rogers, L. 2015. ApJ, 801, 41. [2] Zeng, L. & Sasselov, D. 2013. PASP, 125, 227.

  12. Earth's Mysterious Atmosphere: Atlas 1 Teacher's Guide with Activities.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Essex Corp., Huntsville, AL.

    This atmospheric studies teacher's guide for use with middle school students blends lessons in chemistry, physics, and the life, earth, and space sciences in an attempt to accomplish the following: to nurture students' natural curiosity and excitement about science, mathematics, and technology; to encourage career exploration in science,…

  13. Earth's mysterious atmosphere. ATLAS 1: Teachers guide with activities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    1991-11-01

    One of our mission's primary goals is to better understand the physics and chemistry of our atmosphere, the thin envelope of air that provides for human life and shields us from the harshness of space. The Space Shuttle Atlantis will carry the ATLAS 1 science instruments 296 km above Earth, so that they can look down into and through the various layers of the atmosphere. Five solar radiometers will precisely measure the amount of energy the Sun injects into Earth's environment. The chemistry at different altitudes will be measured very accurately by five other instruments called spectrometers. Much of our time in the cockpit of Atlantis will be devoted to two very exciting instruments that measure the auroras and the atmosphere's electrical characteristics. Finally, our ultraviolet telescope will probe the secrets of fascinating celestial objects. This Teacher's Guide is designed as a detective story to help you appreciate some of the many questions currently studied by scientists around the world. Many complex factors affect our atmosphere today, possibly even changing the course of global climate. All of us who live on Earth must recognize that we play an ever-growing role in causing some of these changes. We must solve this great atmospheric mystery if we are to understand all these changes and know what to do about them.

  14. Earth's mysterious atmosphere. ATLAS 1: Teachers guide with activities

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1991-01-01

    One of our mission's primary goals is to better understand the physics and chemistry of our atmosphere, the thin envelope of air that provides for human life and shields us from the harshness of space. The Space Shuttle Atlantis will carry the ATLAS 1 science instruments 296 km above Earth, so that they can look down into and through the various layers of the atmosphere. Five solar radiometers will precisely measure the amount of energy the Sun injects into Earth's environment. The chemistry at different altitudes will be measured very accurately by five other instruments called spectrometers. Much of our time in the cockpit of Atlantis will be devoted to two very exciting instruments that measure the auroras and the atmosphere's electrical characteristics. Finally, our ultraviolet telescope will probe the secrets of fascinating celestial objects. This Teacher's Guide is designed as a detective story to help you appreciate some of the many questions currently studied by scientists around the world. Many complex factors affect our atmosphere today, possibly even changing the course of global climate. All of us who live on Earth must recognize that we play an ever-growing role in causing some of these changes. We must solve this great atmospheric mystery if we are to understand all these changes and know what to do about them.

  15. Earth's mysterious atmosphere. ATLAS 1: Teachers guide with activities

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1991-11-01

    One of our mission's primary goals is to better understand the physics and chemistry of our atmosphere, the thin envelope of air that provides for human life and shields us from the harshness of space. The Space Shuttle Atlantis will carry the ATLAS 1 science instruments 296 km above Earth, so that they can look down into and through the various layers of the atmosphere. Five solar radiometers will precisely measure the amount of energy the Sun injects into Earth's environment. The chemistry at different altitudes will be measured very accurately by five other instruments called spectrometers. Much of our time in the cockpit of Atlantis will be devoted to two very exciting instruments that measure the auroras and the atmosphere's electrical characteristics. Finally, our ultraviolet telescope will probe the secrets of fascinating celestial objects. This Teacher's Guide is designed as a detective story to help you appreciate some of the many questions currently studied by scientists around the world. Many complex factors affect our atmosphere today, possibly even changing the course of global climate. All who live on Earth must recognize that they play an ever-growing role in causing some of these changes. People must solve this great atmospheric mystery if they are to understand all these changes and know what to do about them.

  16. Atmospheric CO2: principal control knob governing Earth's temperature.

    PubMed

    Lacis, Andrew A; Schmidt, Gavin A; Rind, David; Ruedy, Reto A

    2010-10-15

    Ample physical evidence shows that carbon dioxide (CO(2)) is the single most important climate-relevant greenhouse gas in Earth's atmosphere. This is because CO(2), like ozone, N(2)O, CH(4), and chlorofluorocarbons, does not condense and precipitate from the atmosphere at current climate temperatures, whereas water vapor can and does. Noncondensing greenhouse gases, which account for 25% of the total terrestrial greenhouse effect, thus serve to provide the stable temperature structure that sustains the current levels of atmospheric water vapor and clouds via feedback processes that account for the remaining 75% of the greenhouse effect. Without the radiative forcing supplied by CO(2) and the other noncondensing greenhouse gases, the terrestrial greenhouse would collapse, plunging the global climate into an icebound Earth state.

  17. Atmospheric CO2: Principal Control Knob Governing Earth's Temperature

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lacis, Andrew A.; Schmidt, Gavin A.; Rind, David; Ruedy, Reto A.

    2010-01-01

    Ample physical evidence shows that carbon dioxide (CO2) is the single most important climate-relevant greenhouse gas in Earth s atmosphere. This is because CO2, like ozone, N2O, CH4, and chlorofluorocarbons, does not condense and precipitate from the atmosphere at current climate temperatures, whereas water vapor can and does. Noncondensing greenhouse gases, which account for 25% of the total terrestrial greenhouse effect, thus serve to provide the stable temperature structure that sustains the current levels of atmospheric water vapor and clouds via feedback processes that account for the remaining 75% of the greenhouse effect. Without the radiative forcing supplied by CO2 and the other noncondensing greenhouse gases, the terrestrial greenhouse would collapse, plunging the global climate into an icebound Earth state.

  18. Atmospheric CO2: principal control knob governing Earth's temperature.

    PubMed

    Lacis, Andrew A; Schmidt, Gavin A; Rind, David; Ruedy, Reto A

    2010-10-15

    Ample physical evidence shows that carbon dioxide (CO(2)) is the single most important climate-relevant greenhouse gas in Earth's atmosphere. This is because CO(2), like ozone, N(2)O, CH(4), and chlorofluorocarbons, does not condense and precipitate from the atmosphere at current climate temperatures, whereas water vapor can and does. Noncondensing greenhouse gases, which account for 25% of the total terrestrial greenhouse effect, thus serve to provide the stable temperature structure that sustains the current levels of atmospheric water vapor and clouds via feedback processes that account for the remaining 75% of the greenhouse effect. Without the radiative forcing supplied by CO(2) and the other noncondensing greenhouse gases, the terrestrial greenhouse would collapse, plunging the global climate into an icebound Earth state. PMID:20947761

  19. Earth-atmosphere evolution based on new determination of Devonian atmosphere Ar isotopic composition

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stuart, Finlay M.; Mark, Darren F.; Gandanger, Pierre; McConville, Paul

    2016-07-01

    The isotopic composition of the noble gases, in particular Ar, in samples of ancient atmosphere trapped in rocks and minerals provides the strongest constraints on the timing and rate of Earth atmosphere formation by degassing of the Earth's interior. We have re-measured the isotopic composition of argon in the Rhynie chert from northeast Scotland using a high precision mass spectrometer in an effort to provide constraints on the composition of Devonian atmosphere. Irradiated chert samples yield 40Ar/36Ar ratios that are often below the modern atmosphere value. The data define a 40Ar/36Ar value of 289.5 ± 0.4 at K/36Ar = 0. Similarly low 40Ar/36Ar are measured in un-irradiated chert samples. The simplest explanation for the low 40Ar/36Ar is the preservation of Devonian atmosphere-derived Ar in the chert, with the intercept value in 40Ar-39Ar-36Ar space representing an upper limit. In this case the Earth's atmosphere has accumulated only 3% (5.1 ± 0.4 ×1016 mol) of the total 40Ar inventory since the Devonian. The average accumulation rate of 1.27 ± 0.09 ×108 mol40Ar/yr overlaps the rate over the last 800 kyr. This implies that there has been no resolvable temporal change in the outgassing rate of the Earth since the mid-Palaeozoic despite the likely episodicity of Ar degassing from the continental crust. Incorporating the new Devonian atmosphere 40Ar/36Ar into the Earth degassing model of Pujol et al. (2013) provides the most precise constraints on atmosphere formation so far. The atmosphere formed in the first ∼100 Ma after initial accretion during a catastrophic degassing episode. A significant volume of 40Ar did not start to accumulate in the atmosphere until after 4 Ga which implies that stable K-rich continental crust did not develop until this time.

  20. Argon isotopic composition of Archaean atmosphere probes early Earth geodynamics.

    PubMed

    Pujol, Magali; Marty, Bernard; Burgess, Ray; Turner, Grenville; Philippot, Pascal

    2013-06-01

    Understanding the growth rate of the continental crust through time is a fundamental issue in Earth sciences. The isotopic signatures of noble gases in the silicate Earth (mantle, crust) and in the atmosphere afford exceptional insight into the evolution through time of these geochemical reservoirs. However, no data for the compositions of these reservoirs exists for the distant past, and temporal exchange rates between Earth's interior and its surface are severely under-constrained owing to a lack of samples preserving the original signature of the atmosphere at the time of their formation. Here, we report the analysis of argon in Archaean (3.5-billion-year-old) hydrothermal quartz. Noble gases are hosted in primary fluid inclusions containing a mixture of Archaean freshwater and hydrothermal fluid. Our analysis reveals Archaean atmospheric argon with a (40)Ar/(36)Ar value of 143 ± 24, lower than the present-day value of 298.6 (for which (40)Ar has been produced by the radioactive decay of the potassium isotope (40)K, with a half-life of 1.25 billion years; (36)Ar is primordial in origin). This ratio is consistent with an early development of the felsic crust, which might have had an important role in climate variability during the first half of Earth's history.

  1. Life of the Earth in the solar atmosphere (multimedia manual)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kononovich, E. V.; Smirnova, O. B.; Matveychuk, T. V.; Jakunina, G. V.; Krasotkin, S. A.

    2006-08-01

    The purpose of this manual is to illustrate the major physical processes occurring in the Sun - Earth system and ecology of the planet life. The material includes three individual parts: "The Earth", "The Sun" and "The solar-terrestrial connections". Sections do not require cross-references since each of them is self-complete. Inside the sections the material is located in sequences based on the principle: from simple to complex. The material is designed for students of the senior classes of high school and junior university level interested by the problem. The section "The Earth" is devoted to the description of the basic characteristics of the planet: internal structure, magnetic field, lithosphere and an atmosphere together with various occurring in them tectonic, hydro- and atmospheric processes. The top layers of an atmosphere, an ionosphere, a zone of polar lights, radiating belts, magnetosphere are also considered. The section "The Sun" includes the following subsections: the Sun as a star, internal structure of the Sun, Solar atmosphere, solar activity, cyclicity of the solar activity, helioseismology. In the section "The solar-terrestrial connections" the previous material is used to present the influence of the active solar processes on the most various aspects of a terrestrial life: ecological, biological, mental, social, economic and so forth. The problem of forecasting of the solar activity as the key parameter determining a condition of the so-called space weather is considered.

  2. Surface and atmosphere parameter maps from earth-orbiting radiometers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gloersen, P.

    1976-01-01

    Earlier studies have shown that an earth-orbiting electrically scanned microwave radiometer (ESMR) is capable of inferring the extent, concentration, and age of sea ice; the extent, concentration, and thickness of lake ice; rainfall rates over oceans; surface wind speeds over open water; particle size distribution in the deep snow cover of continental ice sheets; and soil moisture content in unvegetated fields. Most other features of the surface of the earth and its atmosphere require multispectral imaging techniques to unscramble the combined contributions of the atmosphere and the surface. Multispectral extraction of surface parameters is analyzed on the basis of a pertinent equation in terms of the observed brightness temperature, the emissivity of the surface which depends on wavelength and various parameters, the sensible temperature of the surface, and the total atmospheric opacity which is also wavelength dependent. Implementation of the multispectral technique is examined. Properties of the surface of the earth and its atmosphere to be determined from a scanning multichannel microwave radiometer are tabulated.

  3. Biospheric-atmospheric coupling on the early Earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Levine, J. S.

    1991-01-01

    Theoretical calculations performed with a one-dimensional photochemical model have been performed to assess the biospheric-atmospheric transfer of gases. Ozone reached levels to shield the Earth from biologically lethal solar ultraviolet radiation (220-300 nm) when atmospheric oxygen reached about 1/10 of its present atmospheric level. In the present atmosphere, about 90 percent of atmospheric nitrous oxide is destroyed via solar photolysis in the stratosphere with about 10 percent destroyed via reaction with excited oxygen atoms. The reaction between nitrous oxide and excited oxygen atoms leads to the production of nitric oxide in the stratosphere, which is responsible for about 70 percent of the global destruction of oxygen in the stratosphere. In the oxygen/ozone deficient atmosphere, solar photolysis destroyed about 100 percent of the atmospheric nitrous oxide, relegating the production of nitric oxide via reaction with excited oxygen to zero. Our laboratory and field measurements indicate that atmospheric oxygen promotes the biogenic production of N2O and NO via denitrification and the biogenic production of methane by methanogenesis.

  4. Radiography of Earth's Core and Mantle with Atmospheric Neutrinos

    SciTech Connect

    Gonzalez-Garcia, M. C.; Halzen, Francis; Maltoni, Michele

    2008-02-15

    A measurement of the absorption of neutrinos with energies in excess of 10 TeV when traversing the Earth is capable of revealing its density distribution. Unfortunately, the existence of beams with sufficient luminosity for the task has been ruled out by the AMANDA South Pole neutrino telescope. In this Letter we point out that, with the advent of second-generation kilometer-scale neutrino detectors, the idea of studying the internal structure of Earth may be revived using atmospheric neutrinos instead.

  5. Constraining Archean Earth's Atmosphere with the Geological Record

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Horan, A. M.; Domagal-Goldman, S. D.; Claire, M.

    2014-12-01

    A warm, water-bearing Archean Earth, when the Sun was young and faint, remains a paradox to the scientific world. Abundant geological data suggests that Archean Earth had standing water at the surface, despite the fainter Sun. An explanation of this paradox is vital to the understanding of Earth's history and coevolution with life. If the surface of the planet was not being kept warm by the Sun, which was 25% less luminous than now, it must have been kept warm a different way—by an atmospheric composition high in greenhouse gases. Constraints on these gases come from the geological record, which have provided proxies for the redox state of the atmosphere (limiting H2 and O2), the total atmospheric pressure, and the partial pressure of certain gases such as carbon dioxide (CO2) and methane (CH4). Previous attempts at solutions to the paradox are consistent with some, but not all, of the geological proxies. The constraints are used as inputs for a 1-D photochemical code, which calculates atmospheric composition and predicts the abundances of atmospheric gases that affect climate, particularly methane (CH4) and gaseous hydrogen (H2). A coupled 1-D radiative-convective climate code is then used to calculate the corresponding surface temperature. Critically, the improved photochemical code maintains strict redox boundary conditions, and is being further updated to ensure that the redox fluxes from volcanoes and mid-ocean ridge vents are consistent with both each other and the redox state of the mantle. These code improvements will lead to changes in both the inputs to the atmosphere from volcanoes and the sink for oxidants at mid-ocean ridges, in turn affecting the abundance of redox-sensitive greenhouse gases such as CH4 and H2. The main purpose of this project is to extend simulations of the Archean surface environment down into the mantle, and to search for a solution to the faint young sun paradox that is consistent with the geological proxies. Beyond having

  6. Structure and Abundance of Nitrous Oxide Complexes in Earth's Atmosphere.

    PubMed

    Salmon, Steven R; de Lange, Katrina M; Lane, Joseph R

    2016-04-01

    We have investigated the lowest energy structures and binding energies of a series of atmospherically relevant nitrous oxide (N2O) complexes using explicitly correlated coupled cluster theory. Specifically, we have considered complexes with nitrogen (N2-N2O), oxygen (O2-N2O), argon (Ar-N2O), and water (H2O-N2O). We have calculated rotational constants and harmonic vibrational frequencies for the complexes and the constituent monomers. Statistical mechanics was used to determine the thermodynamic parameters for complex formation as a function of temperature and pressure. These results, in combination with relevant atmospheric data, were used to estimate the abundance of N2O complexes in Earth's atmosphere as a function of altitude. We find that the abundance of N2O complexes in Earth's atmosphere is small but non-negligible, and we suggest that N2O complexes may contribute to absorption of terrestrial radiation and be relevant for understanding the atmospheric fate of N2O.

  7. Microwave emission and scattering from Earth surface and atmosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kong, J. A.; Lee, M. C.

    1986-01-01

    Nonlinear Electromagnetic (EM) wave interactions with the upper atmosphere were investigated during the period 15 December 1985 to 15 June 1986. Topics discussed include: the simultaneous excitation of ionospheric density irregularities and Earth's magnetic field fluctuations; the electron acceleration by Langmuir wave turbulence; and the occurrence of artificial spread F. The role of thermal effects in generating ionospheric irregularities by Whistler waves, intense Quasi-DC electric fields, atmospheric gravity waves, and electrojets was investigated. A model was developed to explain the discrete spectrum of the resonant ultralow frequency (ULF) waves that are commonly observed in the magnetosphere.

  8. Nonlinear dynamics of global atmospheric and earth system processes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zhang, Taiping; Verbitsky, Mikhail; Saltzman, Barry; Mann, Michael E.; Park, Jeffrey; Lall, Upmanu

    1995-01-01

    During the grant period, the authors continued ongoing studies aimed at enhancing their understanding of the operation of the atmosphere as a complex nonlinear system interacting with the hydrosphere, biosphere, and cryosphere in response to external radiative forcing. Five papers were completed with support from the grant, representing contributions in three main areas of study: (1) theoretical studies of the interactive atmospheric response to changed biospheric boundary conditions measurable from satellites; (2) statistical-observational studies of global-scale temperature variability on interannual to century time scales; and (3) dynamics of long-term earth system changes associated with ice sheet surges.

  9. Contributions of icy planetesimals to the Earth's early atmosphere.

    PubMed

    Owen, T C; Bar-Nun, A

    2001-01-01

    Laboratory experiments on the trapping of gases by ice forming at low temperatures implicate comets as major carriers of the heavy noble gases to the inner planets. These icy planetesimals may also have brought the nitrogen compounds that ultimately produced atmospheric N2. However, if the sample of three comets analyzed so far is typical, the Earth's oceans cannot have been produced by comets alone, they require an additional source of water with low D/H. The highly fractionated neon in the Earth's atmosphere may also indicate the importance of non-icy carriers of volatiles. The most important additional carrier is probably the rocky material comprising the bulk of the mass of these planets. Venus may require a contribution from icy planetesimals formed at the low temperatures characteristic of the Kuiper Belt. PMID:11599179

  10. Observing atmospheric tides in Earth rotation parameters with VLBI

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Girdiuk, Anastasiia; Böhm, Johannes; Schindelegger, Michael

    2015-04-01

    In this study, we assess the contribution of diurnal (S1) and semi-diurnal (S2) atmospheric tides to variations in Earth rotation by analyzing Very Long Baseline Interferometry (VLBI) observations. Particular emphasis is placed on the dependency of S1 and S2 estimates on varying settings in the a priori delay model. We use hourly Earth rotation parameters (ERP) of polar motion and UT1 as determined with the Vienna VLBI Software (VieVS) from 25 years of VLBI observations and we adjust diurnal and semi-diurnal amplitudes to the hourly ERP estimates after disregarding the effect of high-frequency ocean tides. Prograde and retrograde polar motion coefficients are obtained for several solutions differing in processing strategies (with/without thermal deformation, time span of observations, choice of a priori ERP model and celestial pole offsets) and we compare the corresponding harmonics with those derived from atmospheric and non-tidal oceanic angular momentum estimates.

  11. Hydrogen-nitrogen greenhouse warming in Earth's early atmosphere.

    PubMed

    Wordsworth, Robin; Pierrehumbert, Raymond

    2013-01-01

    Understanding how Earth has sustained surface liquid water throughout its history remains a key challenge, given that the Sun's luminosity was much lower in the past. Here we show that with an atmospheric composition consistent with the most recent constraints, the early Earth would have been significantly warmed by H(2)-N(2) collision-induced absorption. With two to three times the present-day atmospheric mass of N(2) and a H(2) mixing ratio of 0.1, H(2)-N(2) warming would be sufficient to raise global mean surface temperatures above 0°C under 75% of present-day solar flux, with CO(2) levels only 2 to 25 times the present-day values. Depending on their time of emergence and diversification, early methanogens may have caused global cooling via the conversion of H(2) and CO(2) to CH(4), with potentially observable consequences in the geological record.

  12. Digital elevation model visibility including Earth's curvature and atmosphere refraction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Santossilva, Ewerton; Vieiradias, Luiz Alberto

    1990-03-01

    There are some instances in which the Earth's curvature and the atmospheric refraction, optical or electronic, are important factors when digital elevation models are used for visibility calculations. This work deals with this subject, suggesting a practical approach to solve this problem. Some examples, from real terrain data, are presented. The equipment used was an IBM-PC like computer with a SITIM graphic card.

  13. A Comparative Study of Super-Earth Atmospheres

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dragomir, Diana; Benneke, Bjoern; Crossfield, Ian; Howard, Andrew; Knutson, Heather

    2014-12-01

    Ongoing transit surveys such as Kepler have resulted in the discovery of more than a dozen super?Earth planets with measured masses and radii. These planets are challenging targets for atmospheric characterization studies, and to date only one (GJ 1214b) has been studied in detail. In this proposal we focus on three additional super-Earths that are amenable to transmission spectroscopy studies due to their bright host stars (HD 97658b and 55 Cnc e) or their exceptionally low density (Kepler-138d). Our Spitzer measurements of these planets' transit depths will complement our already approved HST observations and contribute to distinguishing between clear hydrogen?dominated atmospheres and compact high-metallicity atmospheres, as well as constraining the composition of any high-altitude clouds. We will also search for evidence of carbon-bearing molecules, in particular for 55 Cnc e, a planet for which a carbon-rich composition has been suggested. Our observations will probe the poorly understood transition region between gas giant planets and terrestrial worlds, and provide constraints on the formation regions of these super-Earths. The results of this program will inform the direction to be taken by large-scale studies of these worlds with JWST.

  14. Chemical effects of large impacts on the Earth's primitive atmosphere.

    PubMed

    Fegley, B; Prinn, R G; Hartman, H; Watkins, G H

    1986-01-23

    Intense bombardment of the moon and terrestrial planets approximately 3.9-4.0 x 10(9) years ago could have caused the chemical reprocessing of the Earth's primitive atmosphere. In particular, the shock heating and rapid quenching caused by the impact of large bodies into the atmosphere could produce molecules such as HCN and H2CO4 which are important precursors for the abiotic synthesis of complex organic molecules. Here we model the production of HCN and H2CO by thermochemical equilibrium and chemical kinetic calculations of the composition of shocked air parcels for a wide range of temperatures, pressures and initial compositions. For atmospheres with C/O > or = 1, our results suggest that bolide impacts cause HCN volume mixing ratios of approximately 10(-3) to 10(-5) in the impact region and global average ratios of 10(-5) to 10(-12). The corresponding H2CO mixing ratios in the impact region are 10(-7) to 10(-9); no-global mixing can occur, however, as H2CO is rapidly destroyed or rained out of the atmosphere within days to hours. Rainout to the oceans of 3-15% of the HCN produced can provide approximately (3-14) x 10(11) mol HCN per year. This is somewhat larger than other predicted sources of HCN and H2CO on the primitive Earth.

  15. Atmospheric Production of Perchlorate on Earth and Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Claire, M.; Catling, D. C.; Zahnle, K. J.

    2009-12-01

    Natural production and preservation of perchlorate on Earth occurs only in arid environments. Isotopic evidence suggests a strong role for atmospheric oxidation of chlorine species via pathways including ozone or its photochemical derivatives. As the Martian atmosphere is both oxidizing and drier than the driest places on Earth, we propose an atmospheric origin for the Martian perchlorates measured by NASA's Phoenix Lander. A variety of hypothetical formation pathways can be proposed including atmospheric photochemical reactions, electrostatic discharge, and gas-solid reactions. Here, we investigate gas phase formation pathways using a 1-D photochemical model (Catling et al. 2009, accepted by JGR). Because perchlorate-rich deposits in the Atacama desert are closest in abundance to perchlorate measured at NASA's Phoenix Lander site, we start with a study of the means to produce Atacama perchlorate. We found that perchlorate can be produced in sufficient quantities to explain the abundance of perchlorate in the Atacama from a proposed gas phase oxidation of chlorine volatiles to perchloric acid. These results are sensitive to estimated reaction rates for ClO3 species. The feasibility of gas phase production for the Atacama provides justification for further investigations of gas phase photochemistry as a possible source for Martian perchlorate. In addition to the Atacama results, we will present a preliminary study incorporating chlorine chemistry into an existing Martian photochemical model (Zahnle et al. JGR 2008).

  16. Evolution of a steam atmosphere during Earth's accretion.

    PubMed

    Zahnle, K J; Kasting, J F; Pollack, J B

    1988-01-01

    We have modeled the evolution of an impact-generated steam atmosphere surrounding an accreting Earth. The model assumes Safronov accretion; it includes degassing of planetesimals upon impact, thermal blanketing by a steam atmosphere, interchange of water between the surface and the interior, shock heating and convective cooling of Earth's interior, and hydrogen escape, both by a solar extreme ultraviolet (EUV) powered planetary wind and by impact erosion (atmospheric cratering). The model does not include atmophiles other than water, chemical reaction of water with metallic iron, core formation, compression, and spatial and temporal inhomogeneity of accretion. If the incoming planetesimals were too dry or the EUV flux too high, very little water would accumulate at the surface. Essentially all water retained by such a planet would be through rehydration of silicates. If rehydration were inefficient, very little water would be retained in any form. Degassing of wetter planetesimals produces a steam atmosphere over a magma ocean, the energy of accretion being sufficient to maintain a runaway greenhouse atmosphere. The mass of the atmosphere is limited by water's solubility in the (partial) melt. This type of solution is produced for a wide range of model parameters. During accretion, approximately 30 bars of water could have kept the surface at 1500 degrees K. As the accretional energy input declined below the runaway greenhouse threshold, the steam atmosphere rained out. Outgassing of dissolved water at the close of accretion is quantitatively important. These models can leave from approximately 100 to more than 300 bars of water at the surface at the close of accretion. In general, most of the water accreted remains dissolved in the mantle. H2 could have escaped as rapidly as it formed only if the planetesimals were relatively dry. Consequently H2 should have accumulated until it reached chemical equilibrium with water vapor. Impact erosion (escape caused by impact

  17. Land-surface atmosphere coupling in an earth system model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    de Vrese, Philipp; Hagemann, Stefan

    2014-05-01

    The interaction between the atmosphere and the strongly heterogeneous land surface is one of the central scientific topics within Earth system sciences and especially climate research. Many processes, such as vegetation dynamics and the development of spatial patterns in the Subtropics and permafrost regions, take place on scales much below the scale of model resolution. Thus, it is an important scientific challenge to consider the influence of sub-scale heterogeneity on the vertical near-surface fluxes of energy and water. Most climate models do not take into account the actual scale of surface heterogeneities. When coupling a heterogeneous surface to the atmosphere often coupling methods are employed, which include the underlying assumption that the horizontal extent of the individual heterogeneity is so small that the turbulent vertical fluxes stemming from the different surface heterogeneities within one grid-box have mixed horizontally below the lowest model level of the atmosphere. This assumption allows a comparatively simple land-surface-atmosphere coupling with a horizontally homogeneous state of the atmosphere, but it may also be the source of significant errors. In order to access the extent of error introduced we designed an experiment in which the results of three different coupling schemes were compared. The first one is a parameter-aggregation scheme, the second a flux-aggregation scheme based on the assumption of a horizontally homogeneous atmosphere on the lowest atmospheric model level and the third one is a coupling scheme which allows, up to a given height, for the atmosphere to be horizontally heterogeneous within a grid-box. These coupling methods were implemented in the land-surface model JSBACH which was then coupled to the general circulation model ECHAM6, both part of the Max Planck Institute for Meteorology's earth system model MPI-ESM. In a first step sensitivity studies are being carried out to gain process understanding and to

  18. The role of impacting processes in the chemical evolution of the atmosphere of primordial Earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mukhin, Lev M.; Gerasimov, M. V.

    1991-01-01

    The role of impacting processes in the chemical evolution of the atmosphere of primordial Earth is discussed. The following subject areas are covered: (1) Earth's initial atmosphere; (2) continuous degassing; (3) impact processes and the Earth's protoatmosphere; and (4) the evolution of an impact-generated atmosphere.

  19. Quantifying Atmospheric Moist Processes from Earth Observations. Really?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stephens, G. L.

    2015-12-01

    The amount of water in the Earth's atmosphere is tiny compared to all other sources of water on our planet, fresh or otherwise. However, this tiny amount of water is fundamental to most aspects of human life. The tiny amount of water that cycles from the Earth's surface, through condensation into clouds in the atmosphere returning as precipitation falling is not only natures way of delivering fresh water to land-locked human societies but it also exerts a fundamental control on our climate system producing the most important feedbacks in the system. The representation of these processes in Earth system models contain many errors that produce well now biases in the hydrological cycle. Surprisingly the parameterizations of these important processes are not well validated with observations. Part of the reason for this situation stems from the fact that process evaluation is difficult to achieve on the global scale since it has commonly been assumed that the static observations available from snap-shots of individual parameters contain little information on processes. One of the successes of the A-Train has been the development of multi-parameter analysis based on the multi-sensor data produced by the satellite constellation. This has led to new insights on how water cycles through the Earth's atmosphere. Examples of these insights will be highlighted. It will be described how the rain formation process has been observed and how this has been used to constrain this process in models, with a huge impact. How these observations are beginning to reveal insights on deep convection and examples of the use these observations applied to models will also be highlighted as will the effects of aerosol on clouds on radiation.

  20. Origin of the oceans and the atmosphere of the Earth

    SciTech Connect

    Delsemme, A.H. )

    1992-01-01

    In the terrestrial zone of the Solar Nebula, the temperature of the dusty particles that sedimented from the gas phase to form the Earth cannot be directly established. However, it can be deduced from the known accretion temperature of chondrites, combined with any reasonable temperature gradient from 2.6 to 1 A.U. The authors find that it had to be close to 1,000 K, implying complete degassing of the grains. In particular, all carbon was in gaseous CO and all H[sub 2]O was steam (no silicates were hydrated). The subsequent agglomeration of planetesimals into the Earth was therefore completely devoid of volatiles. A more recent process must exist to bring carbon, nitrogen and water to the Earth. A [open quotes]primary[close quotes] atmosphere has not been captured later (by gravitation) from the nebular gas, as established by the present abundances of the rare gas isotopes. There remains therefore a single possible source for our oceans and our atmosphere: during the following 500 million years, the formation of the giant (comets). A testimony of this bombardment is still visible in the numerous craters of the Moon. A model for the orbital diffusion of those icy planetesimals that Chiba's (1991) estimates deduced from the lunar craters. Our model produces ten times too much water for our present oceans, and one thousand times too much atmosphere. This is consistent with the very large losses implied by the numerous impacts of larger and larger bodies in the final stages of accretion. At the end, a large amount of very fine dust reached the ground by floating gently through the upper atmosphere; it came from the tails of those numberless comets that visited our inner solar system. This dust was able to seed the primitive oceans with organic compounds without destroying them. Hence life was able to start early, as soon as accretion ended.

  1. Interferometric Characterization of the Earth's Atmosphere from Lagrange Point 2

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Herman, Jay R.; Komar, George (Technical Monitor)

    2001-01-01

    Part of the NASA plans for future Earth Science missions calls for observations using novel vantage points that can produce science products otherwise unobtainable. Observations of the Earth from the Lagrange-2 point, L-2, (1.5 million km behind the Earth on the Earth-Sun line) affords a unique vantage point for atmospheric science. Spectral observation of the Earth's atmosphere using solar occultation techniques in the near infrared (1 to 4 microns) provides one of the most accurate methods of passively sensing attitude profiles of the major species (CO2, O3, O2, CH4, H2O N2O). While traditional polar orbiting occultation measurements can obtain about 14 measurements per day (2 per orbit), solar occultation observations from the Lagrange-2 point will yield hourly profile measurements at all latitudes. The expected spatial resolution is 2 km in altitude, 0.5 degrees in latitude, and 2 degrees in longitude. The result from 24 hours of observations will be a three-dimensional map of atmospheric composition. To accomplish this task from L-2 requires the development of a large moderate spectral resolution instrument whose entrance aperture is about 10 meters. Use of a standard telescope design with a 10-meter circular mirror or a 10-meter strip mirror would be prohibitively expensive and excessively massive. Instead, we are proposing the development of a 10-meter linear interferometer coupled to a Fourier transform imaging spectrometer. The result will be a highly efficient design with sufficient sensitivity, while having both spatial and spectral resolution to produce the desired results. Preliminary calculations show that seven species (CO2, O3, O2, CH4, H2O N2O) have clearly separated spectral features in the I to 4 microns range with sufficient absorption to produce profile information from near the Earth's surface to the middle stratosphere. For CO2 the estimated sensitivity to change is 0.33% or 1 part in 330. This should be sufficient to detect changes that are

  2. Atmospheric composition and climate on the early Earth.

    PubMed

    Kasting, James F; Howard, M Tazewell

    2006-10-29

    Oxygen isotope data from ancient sedimentary rocks appear to suggest that the early Earth was significantly warmer than today, with estimates of surface temperatures between 45 and 85 degrees C. We argue, following others, that this interpretation is incorrect-the same data can be explained via a change in isotopic composition of seawater with time. These changes in the isotopic composition could result from an increase in mean depth of the mid-ocean ridges caused by a decrease in geothermal heat flow with time. All this implies that the early Earth was warm, not hot.A more temperate early Earth is also easier to reconcile with the long-term glacial record. However, what triggered these early glaciations is still under debate. The Paleoproterozoic glaciations at approximately 2.4Ga were probably caused by the rise of atmospheric O2 and a concomitant decrease in greenhouse warming by CH4. Glaciation might have occurred in the Mid-Archaean as well, at approximately 2.9Ga, perhaps as a consequence of anti-greenhouse cooling by hydrocarbon haze. Both glaciations are linked to decreases in the magnitude of mass-independent sulphur isotope fractionation in ancient rocks. Studying both the oxygen and sulphur isotopic records has thus proved useful in probing the composition of the early atmosphere.

  3. Atmospheric composition and climate on the early Earth

    PubMed Central

    Kasting, James F; Howard, M. Tazewell

    2006-01-01

    Oxygen isotope data from ancient sedimentary rocks appear to suggest that the early Earth was significantly warmer than today, with estimates of surface temperatures between 45 and 85°C. We argue, following others, that this interpretation is incorrect—the same data can be explained via a change in isotopic composition of seawater with time. These changes in the isotopic composition could result from an increase in mean depth of the mid-ocean ridges caused by a decrease in geothermal heat flow with time. All this implies that the early Earth was warm, not hot. A more temperate early Earth is also easier to reconcile with the long-term glacial record. However, what triggered these early glaciations is still under debate. The Paleoproterozoic glaciations at approximately 2.4 Ga were probably caused by the rise of atmospheric O2 and a concomitant decrease in greenhouse warming by CH4. Glaciation might have occurred in the Mid-Archaean as well, at approximately 2.9 Ga, perhaps as a consequence of anti-greenhouse cooling by hydrocarbon haze. Both glaciations are linked to decreases in the magnitude of mass-independent sulphur isotope fractionation in ancient rocks. Studying both the oxygen and sulphur isotopic records has thus proved useful in probing the composition of the early atmosphere. PMID:17008214

  4. Which Solar and Geomagnetic Drivers Control Earth's Upper Atmosphere Thermostat?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Knipp, D.; Mlynczak, M. G.; McGranaghan, R. M.; Kilcommons, L. M.

    2015-12-01

    Nitric Oxide (NO) is a trace component of Earth's upper atmosphere that allows Earth's thermosphere to cool in response to energy input from solar extreme ultraviolet (EUV) photons and geomagnetic activity. When created and excited, NO molecules provide a natural thermostat via infrared radiative emissions [Kockarts, 1980]. A record of this cooling over the last 13 years has been provided by Mlynczak et al. [2014]. Nitric Oxide emissions in concert with EUV photons, auroral particles, and neutral thermosphere circulation determine if geomagnetic storms will deliver a sudden powerful upheaval of Earth's upper atmosphere or a damped event. In this talk I will review recent findings about the forecastability of solar and magnetospheric control of this important thermospheric trace constituent. In particular, I will discuss the role of pseudo-streamers and helmet streamers in the solar wind, and the possible role of magnetic cloud orientation, in determining the extent of thermospheric NO storm response. Anticipating the thermospheric NO response to geomagnetic storms is a next step in improving satellite drag forecasting.

  5. Notes on Earth Atmospheric Entry for Mars Sample Return Missions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rivell, Thomas

    2006-01-01

    The entry of sample return vehicles (SRVs) into the Earth's atmosphere is the subject of this document. The Earth entry environment for vehicles, or capsules, returning from the planet Mars is discussed along with the subjects of dynamics, aerodynamics, and heat transfer. The material presented is intended for engineers and scientists who do not have strong backgrounds in aerodynamics, aerothermodynamics and flight mechanics. The document is not intended to be comprehensive and some important topics are omitted. The topics considered in this document include basic principles of physics (fluid mechanics, dynamics and heat transfer), chemistry and engineering mechanics. These subjects include: a) fluid mechanics (aerodynamics, aerothermodynamics, compressible fluids, shock waves, boundary layers, and flow regimes from subsonic to hypervelocity; b) the Earth s atmosphere and gravity; c) thermal protection system design considerations; d) heat and mass transfer (convection, radiation, and ablation); e) flight mechanics (basic rigid body dynamics and stability); and f) flight- and ground-test requirements; and g) trajectory and flow simulation methods.

  6. Potential Biosignatures in Super-Earth Atmospheres II. Photochemical Responses

    PubMed Central

    Gebauer, S.; Godolt, M.; Palczynski, K.; Rauer, H.; Stock, J.; von Paris, P.; Lehmann, R.; Selsis, F.

    2013-01-01

    Abstract Spectral characterization of super-Earth atmospheres for planets orbiting in the habitable zone of M dwarf stars is a key focus in exoplanet science. A central challenge is to understand and predict the expected spectral signals of atmospheric biosignatures (species associated with life). Our work applies a global-mean radiative-convective-photochemical column model assuming a planet with an Earth-like biomass and planetary development. We investigated planets with gravities of 1g and 3g and a surface pressure of 1 bar around central stars with spectral classes from M0 to M7. The spectral signals of the calculated planetary scenarios have been presented by in an earlier work by Rauer and colleagues. The main motivation of the present work is to perform a deeper analysis of the chemical processes in the planetary atmospheres. We apply a diagnostic tool, the Pathway Analysis Program, to shed light on the photochemical pathways that form and destroy biosignature species. Ozone is a potential biosignature for complex life. An important result of our analysis is a shift in the ozone photochemistry from mainly Chapman production (which dominates in Earth's stratosphere) to smog-dominated ozone production for planets in the habitable zone of cooler (M5–M7)-class dwarf stars. This result is associated with a lower energy flux in the UVB wavelength range from the central star, hence slower planetary atmospheric photolysis of molecular oxygen, which slows the Chapman ozone production. This is important for future atmospheric characterization missions because it provides an indication of different chemical environments that can lead to very different responses of ozone, for example, cosmic rays. Nitrous oxide, a biosignature for simple bacterial life, is favored for low stratospheric UV conditions, that is, on planets orbiting cooler stars. Transport of this species from its surface source to the stratosphere where it is destroyed can also be a key process

  7. Earth Rotation and Coupling to Changes in Atmospheric Angular Momentum

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rosen, Richard D.; Frey, H. (Technical Monitor)

    2000-01-01

    The research supported under the contract dealt primarily with: (a) the mechanisms responsible for the exchange of angular momentum between the solid Earth and atmosphere; (b) the quality of the data sets used to estimate atmospheric angular momentum; and (c) the ability of these data and of global climate models to detect low-frequency signals in the momentum and, hence, circulation of the atmosphere. Three scientific papers reporting on the results of this research were produced during the course of the contract. These papers identified the particular torques responsible for the peak in atmospheric angular momentum and length-of-day during the 1982-93 El Nino event, and, more generally, the relative roles of torques over land and ocean in explaining the broad spectrum of variability in the length-of-day. In addition, a tendency for interannual variability in atmospheric angular momentum to increase during the last several decades of the 20th century was found in both observations and a global climate model experiment.

  8. Water loss from Venus: Implications for the Earth's early atmosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Richardson, S. M.; Pollack, J. B.; Reynolds, R. T.

    1985-01-01

    The atmosphere of Venus outgassed rapidly as a result of planetary heating during accretion, resulting in massive water loss. The processes affecting atmospheric chemistry following accretion have consisted largely of hydrogen escape and internal re-equilibrium. The initial bulk composition of Venus and Earth are assumed to have been roughly similar. Chemical speciation on Venus was controlled by the temperature and oxygen buffering capacity of the surface magma. It is also assumed that the surfaces of planetary bodies of the inner solar system were partly or wholly molten during accretion with a temperature estimated at 1273 to 1573 K. To investigate the range of reasonable initial atmospheric compositions on Venus, limits have to be set for the proportion of total hydrogen and the buffered fugacity of oxygen. Using the C/H ratio of 0.033 set for Earth, virtually all of the water generated during outgassing must later have been lost in order to bring the current CO2/H2O ratio for Venus up to its observed value of 10 sup 4 to 10 sup 5. The proportion of H2O decreases in model atmospheres with successfully higher C/H values, ultimately approaching the depleted values currently observed on Venus. Increasing C/H also results in a rapid increase in CO/H2O and provides an efficient mechanism for water loss by the reaction CO+H2O = CO2 + H2. This reaction, plus water loss mechanisms involving crustal iron, could have removed a very large volume of water from the Venusian atmosphere, even at a low C/H value.

  9. Integrating the Earth, Atmospheric, and Ocean Sciences at Millersville University

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Clark, R. D.

    2005-12-01

    For nearly 40 years, the Department of Earth Sciences at Millersville University (MU-DES) of Pennsylvania has been preparing students for careers in the earth, atmospheric, and ocean sciences by providing a rigorous and comprehensive curricula leading to B.S. degrees in geology, meteorology, and oceanography. Undergraduate research is a hallmark of these earth sciences programs with over 30 students participating in some form of meritorious research each year. These programs are rich in applied physics, couched in mathematics, and steeped in technical computing and computer languages. Our success is measured by the number of students that find meaningful careers or go on to earn graduate degrees in their respective fields, as well as the high quality of faculty that the department has retained over the years. Student retention rates in the major have steadily increased with the introduction of a formal learning community and peer mentoring initiatives, and the number of new incoming freshmen and transfer students stands at an all-time high. Yet until recently, the disciplines have remained largely disparate with only minor inroads made into integrating courses that seek to address the Earth as a system. This is soon to change as the MU-DES unveils a new program leading to a B.S. in Integrated Earth Systems. The B.S. in Integrated Earth Systems (ISS) is not a reorganization of existing courses to form a marketable program. Instead, it is a fully integrated program two years in development that borrows from the multi-disciplinary backgrounds and experiences of faculty, while bringing in resources that are tailored to visualizing and modeling the Earth system. The result is the creation of a cross-cutting curriculum designed to prepare the 21st century student for the challenges and opportunities attending the holistic study of the Earth as a system. MU-DES will continue to offer programs leading to degrees in geology, meteorology, and ocean science, but in addition

  10. Aerosol in the upper layer of earth's atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Morozhenko, A. V.; Vidmachenko, A. P.; Nevodovskii, P. V.

    2013-09-01

    Aerosol layers exist in the upper atmospheres of Venus, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn and the Earth. The reason for their existence may be meteorites, rings, and removal of particles of planetary origin. Observations from 1979 to 1992 showed that the optical thickness of aerosol over the Earth's polar regions changed from tau =0.0002 up to tau =.1 for lambda = 1000 nm. The greatest values of tau were in 1984 and 1992 and they were preceded by a strong volcanic activity of El Chichon (1982) and Pinatubo (1991). We show that the above-mentioned increase in the optical thickness of the stratosphere aerosol can lead to the ozone layer decrease detected in 1970. The stratospheric aerosol nature (real part of refractive index), effective particle size r and changing tau with latitude remain un solved. Among distance methods for the determination of nr and r efficient is the analysis of the phase dependence of the polarization degree. The observational values of the intensity and pol arization degree invisible light are due to optical properties of the surface and optical thickness of the atmosphere, the values of which vary with latitude, longitude and time. Therefore, it is impossible to identify accurately the stratospheric aerosol contribution. When observing in UV at lambda < 300 nm, the ozone layer cuts off the influence of the surface and the Earth's atmosphere to an altitude from 20 to 25 km. In this spectral region some negative factors can take place, namely, the emission of various gases playing depolarizing role, horizontal inhomogeneity of the effective optical thickness of ozone layer, and oriented particles (the polarization plane variation points to their presence).

  11. Exploring the earth's atmosphere by photography from Skylab.

    PubMed

    Packer, D M; Packer, I G

    1977-04-01

    Availability of a 35-mm camera equipped with interference filters, together with an 8-inch-square uv-transmitting window for the Skylab scientific airlocks, revived long-standing interests at the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory in the study of the earth's upper atmosphere. The present paper details the design of several simple experiments to photograph the twilight and night airglow and the daytime ozone from an average 435-km altitude. Other phenomena of the atmosphere, including the polar aurora and noctilucent clouds, were sought, some with success. The versatile system also obtained some photographs of Comet Kohoutek. The experiment, by design, was dependent on man in space to select suitable targets and to optimize the data return from available equipment.

  12. Carbon Monoxide in the Earth's Atmosphere: Increasing Trend.

    PubMed

    Khalil, M A; Rasmussen, R A

    1984-04-01

    The results of an analysis of more than 60,000 atmospheric measurements of carbon monoxide taken over 3(1/2) years at Cape Meares, Oregon (45 degrees N, 125 degrees W), indicate that the background concentration of this gas is increasing. The rate of increase, although uncertain, is about 6 percent per year on average. Human activities are the likely cause of a substantial portion of this observed increase; however, because of the short atmospheric lifetime of carbon monoxide and the relatively few years of observations, fluctuations of sources and sinks related to the natural variability of climate may have affected the observed trend. Increased carbon monoxide may deplete tropospheric hydroxyl radicals, slowing down the removal of dozens of man-made and anthropogenic trace gases and thus indirectly affecting the earth's climate and possibly the stratospheric ozone layer.

  13. Potential biosignatures in super-Earth atmospheres II. Photochemical responses.

    PubMed

    Grenfell, J L; Gebauer, S; Godolt, M; Palczynski, K; Rauer, H; Stock, J; von Paris, P; Lehmann, R; Selsis, F

    2013-05-01

    Spectral characterization of super-Earth atmospheres for planets orbiting in the habitable zone of M dwarf stars is a key focus in exoplanet science. A central challenge is to understand and predict the expected spectral signals of atmospheric biosignatures (species associated with life). Our work applies a global-mean radiative-convective-photochemical column model assuming a planet with an Earth-like biomass and planetary development. We investigated planets with gravities of 1g and 3g and a surface pressure of 1 bar around central stars with spectral classes from M0 to M7. The spectral signals of the calculated planetary scenarios have been presented by in an earlier work by Rauer and colleagues. The main motivation of the present work is to perform a deeper analysis of the chemical processes in the planetary atmospheres. We apply a diagnostic tool, the Pathway Analysis Program, to shed light on the photochemical pathways that form and destroy biosignature species. Ozone is a potential biosignature for complex life. An important result of our analysis is a shift in the ozone photochemistry from mainly Chapman production (which dominates in Earth's stratosphere) to smog-dominated ozone production for planets in the habitable zone of cooler (M5-M7)-class dwarf stars. This result is associated with a lower energy flux in the UVB wavelength range from the central star, hence slower planetary atmospheric photolysis of molecular oxygen, which slows the Chapman ozone production. This is important for future atmospheric characterization missions because it provides an indication of different chemical environments that can lead to very different responses of ozone, for example, cosmic rays. Nitrous oxide, a biosignature for simple bacterial life, is favored for low stratospheric UV conditions, that is, on planets orbiting cooler stars. Transport of this species from its surface source to the stratosphere where it is destroyed can also be a key process. Comparing 1g with

  14. Simulations of micrometeoroid interactions with the Earth atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Briani, G.; Pace, E.; Shore, S. N.; Pupillo, G.; Passaro, A.; Aiello, S.

    2013-04-01

    Aims: Micrometeoroids (cosmic dust with size between a few μm and ~1 mm) dominate the annual extraterrestrial mass flux to the Earth. We investigate the range of physical processes occurring when micrometeoroids traverse the atmosphere. We compute the time (and altitude) dependent mass loss, energy balance, and dynamics to identify which processes determine their survival for a range of entry conditions. Methods: We develop a general numerical model for the micrometeoroid-atmosphere interaction. The equations of motion, energy, and mass balance are simultaneously solved for different entry conditions (e.g. initial radii, incident speeds and angles). Several different physical processes are taken into account in the equation of energy and in the mass balance, in order to understand their relative roles and evolution during the micrometeoroid-atmosphere interaction. In particular, to analyze the micrometeoroid thermal history we include in the energy balance: collisions with atmospheric particles, micrometeoroid radiation emission, evaporation, melting, sputtering and kinetic energy of the ablated mass. Results: Low entry velocities and grazing incidence angles favor micrometeoroid survival. Among those that survive, our model distinguishes (1) micrometeoroids who reach the melting temperature and for which melting is the most effective mass loss mechanism, and (2) micrometeoroids for which ablation due to evaporation causes most of the the mass loss. Melting is the most effective cooling mechanism. Sputtering-induced mass loss is negligible.

  15. Formation of the Aerosol of Space Origin in Earth's Atmosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kozak, P. M.; Kruchynenko, V. G.

    2011-01-01

    The problem of formation of the aerosol of space origin in Earth s atmosphere is examined. Meteoroids of the mass range of 10-18-10-8 g are considered as a source of its origin. The lower bound of the mass range is chosen according to the data presented in literature, the upper bound is determined in accordance with the theory of Whipple s micrometeorites. Basing on the classical equations of deceleration and heating for small meteor bodies we have determined the maximal temperatures of the particles, and altitudes at which they reach critically low velocities, which can be called as velocities of stopping . As a condition for the transformation of a space particle into an aerosol one we have used the condition of non-reaching melting temperature of the meteoroid. The simplified equation of deceleration without earth gravity and barometric formula for the atmosphere density are used. In the equation of heat balance the energy loss for heating is neglected. The analytical solution of the simplified equations is used for the analysis.

  16. Particle motion in atmospheric boundary layers of Mars and Earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    White, B. R.; Iversen, J. D.; Greeley, R.; Pollack, J. B.

    1975-01-01

    To study the eolian mechanics of saltating particles, both an experimental investigation of the flow field around a model crater in an atmospheric boundary layer wind tunnel and numerical solutions of the two- and three-dimensional equations of motion of a single particle under the influence of a turbulent boundary layer were conducted. Two-dimensional particle motion was calculated for flow near the surfaces of both Earth and Mars. For the case of Earth both a turbulent boundary layer with a viscous sublayer and one without were calculated. For the case of Mars it was only necessary to calculate turbulent boundary layer flow with a laminar sublayer because of the low values of friction Reynolds number; however, it was necessary to include the effects of slip flow on a particle caused by the rarefied Martian atmosphere. In the equations of motion the lift force functions were developed to act on a single particle only in the laminar sublayer or a corresponding small region of high shear near the surface for a fully turbulent boundary layer. The lift force functions were developed from the analytical work by Saffman concerning the lift force acting on a particle in simple shear flow.

  17. An atmosphere around the super-Earth 55 Cancri e

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tsiaras, Angelos; Rocchetto, Marco; Waldmann, Ingo; Venot, Olivia; Varley, Rayan; Morello, Giuseppe; Damiano, Mario; Tinetti, Giovanna; Barton, Emma; Yurchenko, Sergey; Tennyson, Jonathan; ExoLights, ExoMol

    2016-10-01

    One of the most successful instruments for observing exoplanetary atmospheres is the Wide Field Camera 3 (WFC3) onboard the Hubble Space Telescope (HST). In particular, the use of the spatial scanning technique has given us the opportunity for even more efficient observations of the brightest targets, achieving the necessary precision of 10 – 100 ppm. With such data and new advanced reduction and statistical techniques, we were able to detect modulations in the spectrum of the hot super-Earth 55 Cancri e, which suggest the existence of a light-weight atmosphere around this planet. Given the brightness of 55 Cancri, the observers adopted a very long scanning length and a very high scanning speed. We took these effects into account, as they can introduce systematics when coupled with the geometrical distortions of the instrument. Our fully Bayesian spectral retrieval code, T-REx, has identified HCN to be the most likely molecular candidate able to explain the features at 1.42 and 1.54 μm. While additional spectroscopic observations in a broader wavelength range in the infrared will be needed to confirm the HCN detection, we used a chemical model, developed with combustion specialists, to explain its pressence. This model indicates that relatively high mixing ratios of HCN may be caused by a high C/O ratio, suggesting this super-Earth is a carbon-rich environment even more exotic than previously thought.

  18. Non-linear processes in the Earth atmosphere boundary layer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grunskaya, Lubov; Valery, Isakevich; Dmitry, Rubay

    2013-04-01

    The work is connected with studying electromagnetic fields in the resonator Earth-Ionosphere. There is studied the interconnection of tide processes of geophysical and astrophysical origin with the Earth electromagnetic fields. On account of non-linear property of the resonator Earth-Ionosphere the tides (moon and astrophysical tides) in the electromagnetic Earth fields are kinds of polyharmonic nature. It is impossible to detect such non-linear processes with the help of the classical spectral analysis. Therefore to extract tide processes in the electromagnetic fields, the method of covariance matrix eigen vectors is used. Experimental investigations of electromagnetic fields in the atmosphere boundary layer are done at the distance spaced stations, situated on Vladimir State University test ground, at Main Geophysical Observatory (St. Petersburg), on Kamchatka pen., on Lake Baikal. In 2012 there was continued to operate the multichannel synchronic monitoring system of electrical and geomagnetic fields at the spaced apart stations: VSU physical experimental proving ground; the station of the Institute of Solar and Terrestrial Physics of Russian Academy of Science (RAS) at Lake Baikal; the station of the Institute of volcanology and seismology of RAS in Paratunka; the station in Obninsk on the base of the scientific and production society "Typhoon". Such investigations turned out to be possible after developing the method of scanning experimental signal of electromagnetic field into non- correlated components. There was used a method of the analysis of the eigen vectors ofthe time series covariance matrix for exposing influence of the moon tides on Ez. The method allows to distribute an experimental signal into non-correlated periodicities. The present method is effective just in the situation when energetical deposit because of possible influence of moon tides upon the electromagnetic fields is little. There have been developed and realized in program components

  19. Earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Carr, M. H.

    1984-01-01

    The following aspects of the planet Earth are discussed: plate tectonics, the interior of the planet, the formation of the Earth, and the evolution of the atmosphere and hydrosphere. The Earth's crust, mantle, and core are examined along with the bulk composition of the planet.

  20. The NASA MSFC Earth Global Reference Atmospheric Model-2007 Version

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Leslie, F.W.; Justus, C.G.

    2008-01-01

    Reference or standard atmospheric models have long been used for design and mission planning of various aerospace systems. The NASA/Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) Global Reference Atmospheric Model (GRAM) was developed in response to the need for a design reference atmosphere that provides complete global geographical variability, and complete altitude coverage (surface to orbital altitudes) as well as complete seasonal and monthly variability of the thermodynamic variables and wind components. A unique feature of GRAM is that, addition to providing the geographical, height, and monthly variation of the mean atmospheric state, it includes the ability to simulate spatial and temporal perturbations in these atmospheric parameters (e.g. fluctuations due to turbulence and other atmospheric perturbation phenomena). A summary comparing GRAM features to characteristics and features of other reference or standard atmospheric models, can be found Guide to Reference and Standard Atmosphere Models. The original GRAM has undergone a series of improvements over the years with recent additions and changes. The software program is called Earth-GRAM2007 to distinguish it from similar programs for other bodies (e.g. Mars, Venus, Neptune, and Titan). However, in order to make this Technical Memorandum (TM) more readable, the software will be referred to simply as GRAM07 or GRAM unless additional clarity is needed. Section 1 provides an overview of the basic features of GRAM07 including the newly added features. Section 2 provides a more detailed description of GRAM07 and how the model output generated. Section 3 presents sample results. Appendices A and B describe the Global Upper Air Climatic Atlas (GUACA) data and the Global Gridded Air Statistics (GGUAS) database. Appendix C provides instructions for compiling and running GRAM07. Appendix D gives a description of the required NAMELIST format input. Appendix E gives sample output. Appendix F provides a list of available

  1. Ionosphere-Earth current density affecting clouds and atmospheric dynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tinsley, Brian; Burns, Gary

    Ionosphere-Earth current density affecting clouds and atmospheric dynamics Correlations of atmospheric dynamics, cloud cover, and precipitation with changes in external and internal inputs that affect the downward ionosphere-earth current density, Jz, through the atmosphere have been reported on day-to-day, decadal, century and longer timescales. Such inputs are changes in the cosmic ray flux; in the interplanetary electric field; in solar energetic particles; in relativistic electron precipitation; and in the upward current output of global thunderstorm activity. The interplanetary electric field and relativistic electron and thunderstorm inputs affect Jz while not changing the tropospheric ionization rate, thus ruling out ion-mediated nucleation as the mechanism affecting the cloud processes. Modeling suggests that charge modulation of aerosol scavenging (CMAS) in clouds affects cloud microphysics and can account for the correlations. The CMAS effects are different for cold clouds as compared to warm clouds, and vary with the size of the condensation nuclei and ice-forming nuclei. CMAS effects on cold and warm cloud lifetimes can account for observed changes in cloud cover on day-to-day and decadal time scales. CMAS effects on precipitation from cold clouds can account for increases in winter storm vorticity in cyclogenesis regions. Increases in cyclonic vorticity in these regions generates anticyclonic blocking a half Rossby wavelength downstream. These affect storm tracks and the advection of cold Arctic air in winter onto the continents. Observations, theory and modeling of cloud microphysics supporting these chains of processes will be reviewed, but the needed modeling of resolved clouds and their insertion into GCMs is complex and demanding, and has yet to be undertaken.

  2. Day time flight of micrometeoroid in upper earth atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Misra, Shikha; Mishra, S. K.

    2016-07-01

    In this paper, the flight of micro (μ)-meteoroid in the day time earth environment has been discussed and the role of photoemission due to solar radiation, in addition to other relevant emission processes, viz. thermionic/charge desorption has been explored. Following Mendis et al., the meteoroid flight has been described by a consistent analytical model which manifests the continuity equations for the momentum, energy, charge and mass of micrometeoroids entering in the earth environment with a finite speed and at a finite angle. The altitude profiles of the characteristic features during flight, viz. surface heating, particle size, mass-loss, charging and its consequence on local atmospheric plasma has been examined in terms of the angle of entrance, entry speed, size, material work function/photoefficiency and incident solar flux. The numerical results show that the photoemission from micrometeoroid significantly contributes in meteoric electrons generation in its path in beginning and end phase of the flight; of course the energetics over the meteoroid in its travel is dominated by mass ablation process.

  3. LAWS (Laser Atmospheric Wind Sounder) earth observing system

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1988-01-01

    Wind profiles can be measured from space using current technology. These wind profiles are essential for answering many of the interdisciplinary scientific questions to be addressed by EOS, the Earth Observing System. This report provides guidance for the development of a spaceborne wind sounder, the Laser Atmospheric Wind Sounder (LAWS), discussing the current state of the technology and reviewing the scientific rationale for the instrument. Whether obtained globally from the EOS polar platform or in the tropics and subtropics from the Space Station, wind profiles from space will provide essential information for advancing the skill of numerical weather prediction, furthering knowledge of large-scale atmospheric circulation and climate dynamics, and improving understanding of the global biogeochemical and hydrologic cycles. The LAWS Instrument Panel recommends that it be given high priority for new instrument development because of the pressing scientific need and the availability of the necessary technology. LAWS is to measure wind profiles with an accuracy of a few meters per second and to sample at intervals of 100 km horizontally for layers km thick.

  4. Photoevaporation of Earth and Super-Earth Atmospheres in the Habitable Zones of M Dwarfs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mohanty, Subhanjoy

    2015-08-01

    Kepler data show that multiple terrestrial-sized planets (i.e., Earths / super-Earths), packed in very close to the central star, are the norm in exoplanetary systems around low-mass stars. Around M dwarfs, a significant fraction of these planets reside within the Habitable Zone (HZ). This has kindled intense excitement about the possibility of finding habitable planets around these cool red stars. However, M dwarfs also remain extremely magnetically active for much longer than solar-type stars: e.g., an M3 dwarf evinces saturated levels of coronal and chromospheric activity over Gyr timescales, compared to ~100 Myr for solar-mass stars. Thus, basal levels of coronal/chromospheric X-ray/EUV emission from M dwarfs, integrated over their saturated activity lifetimes, may severely photoevaporate the atmospheres of terrestrial planets in M dwarf HZs; this would only be exacerbated by flares (which are correspondingly more intense in active M dwarfs). Here we present detailed hydrodynamic calculations of such photoevaporation for planets spanning a range of Earth/super-Earth sizes, residing in the HZ of M dwarfs of various spectral sub-types, over Gyr evolutionary timescales. Our calculations include the effects of: (1) simultaneous X-ray and EUV heating, using state-of-the-art stellar XUV SED models; (2) the change in the stellar XUV SED over evolutionary timescales; (3) realistic radiative losses (which can both dominate and vary in time); (4) thermal evolution of the planetary core; and (5) a range of initial planetary entropies (i.e.,`hot' or `cold' start) and core compositions. The analysis yields the location and extent of the HZ as a function of planetary mass, core composition, initial conditions and M sub-type. We will focus on H/He dominated (i.e., solar abundance) atmospheres; however, we will also discuss qualtitative trends for CO2 / H2O dominated atmospheres, which we are beginning to explore by coupling a detailed photochemical code with our hydrodynamic

  5. Catching Comet's Particles in the Earth's Atmosphere by Using Balloons

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Potashko, Oleksandr; Viso, Michel

    The project is intended to catch cometary particles in the atmosphere by using balloons. The investigation is based upon knowledge that the Earth crosses the comet’s tails during the year. One can catch these particles at different altitudes in the atmosphere. So, we will be able to gradually advance in the ability to launch balloons from low to high altitudes and try to catch particles from different comet tails. The maximum altitude that we have to reach is 40 km. Both methods - distance observation and cometary samples from mission Stardust testify to the presence of organic components in comet’s particles. It would be useful to know more details about this organic matter for astrobiology; besides, the factor poses danger to the Earth. Moreover, it is important to prove that it is possible to get fundamental scientific results at low cost. In the last 5 years launching balloons has become popular and this movement looks like hackers’ one - as most of them occur without launch permission to airspace. The popularity of ballooning is connected with low cost of balloon, GPS unit, video recording unit. If you use iPhone, you have a light solution with GPS, video, picture and control function in one unit. The price of balloon itself begins from $50; it depends on maximum altitude, payload weight and material. Many university teams realized balloon launching and reached even stratosphere at an altitude of 33 km. But most of them take only video and picture. Meanwhile, it is possible to carry out scientific experiments by ballooning, for example to collect comet particles. There is rich experience at the moment of the use of mineral, chemical and isotopic analysis techniques and data of the comet’s dust after successful landing of StarDust capsule with samples in 2006. Besides, we may use absolutely perfect material to catch particles in the atmosphere, which was used by cosmic missions such as Stardust and Japanese Hayabusa. As to balloon launches, we could use

  6. The equilibrium of atmospheric sodium. [in atmospheres of Earth, Io, Mercury and Moon

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hunten, Donald M.

    1992-01-01

    We now have four examples of planetary objects with detectable sodium (and potassium) in their atmospheres: Earth, Io, Mercury and the moon. After a summary of the observational data, this survey discusses proposed sources and sinks. It appears that Io's surface material is rich in frozen SO2, but with around 1 percent of some sodium compound. The Io plasma torus contains ions of S, O and Na, also with at least one molecular ion containing Na. In turn, impact by these ions probably sustains the torus, as well as an extended neutral corona. A primary source for the Earth, Mercury and the moon is meteoroidal bombardment; at Mercury and perhaps the moon it may be supplemented by degassing of atoms from the regolith. Photoionization is important everywhere, although hot electrons are dominant at Io.

  7. ATMOSPHERIC RETRIEVAL FOR SUPER-EARTHS: UNIQUELY CONSTRAINING THE ATMOSPHERIC COMPOSITION WITH TRANSMISSION SPECTROSCOPY

    SciTech Connect

    Benneke, Bjoern; Seager, Sara

    2012-07-10

    We present a retrieval method based on Bayesian analysis to infer the atmospheric compositions and surface or cloud-top pressures from transmission spectra of exoplanets with general compositions. In this study, we identify what can unambiguously be determined about the atmospheres of exoplanets from their transmission spectra by applying the retrieval method to synthetic observations of the super-Earth GJ 1214b. Our approach to inferring constraints on atmospheric parameters is to compute their joint and marginal posterior probability distributions using the Markov Chain Monte Carlo technique in a parallel tempering scheme. A new atmospheric parameterization is introduced that is applicable to general atmospheres in which the main constituent is not known a priori and clouds may be present. Our main finding is that a unique constraint of the mixing ratios of the absorbers and two spectrally inactive gases (such as N{sub 2} and primordial H{sub 2}+ He) is possible if the observations are sufficient to quantify both (1) the broadband transit depths in at least one absorption feature for each absorber and (2) the slope and strength of the molecular Rayleigh scattering signature. A second finding is that the surface pressure or cloud-top pressure can be quantified if a surface or cloud deck is present at low optical depth. A third finding is that the mean molecular mass can be constrained by measuring either the Rayleigh scattering slope or the shapes of the absorption features, thus enabling one to distinguish between cloudy hydrogen-rich atmospheres and high mean molecular mass atmospheres. We conclude, however, that without the signature of molecular Rayleigh scattering-even with robustly detected infrared absorption features (>10{sigma})-there is no reliable way to tell from the transmission spectrum whether the absorber is a main constituent of the atmosphere or just a minor species with a mixing ratio of X{sub abs} < 0.1%. The retrieval method leads us to a

  8. Solar activity impact on the Earth's upper atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kutiev, Ivan; Tsagouri, Ioanna; Perrone, Loredana; Pancheva, Dora; Mukhtarov, Plamen; Mikhailov, Andrei; Lastovicka, Jan; Jakowski, Norbert; Buresova, Dalia; Blanch, Estefania; Andonov, Borislav; Altadill, David; Magdaleno, Sergio; Parisi, Mario; Miquel Torta, Joan

    2013-02-01

    The paper describes results of the studies devoted to the solar activity impact on the Earth's upper atmosphere and ionosphere, conducted within the frame of COST ES0803 Action. Aim: The aim of the paper is to represent results coming from different research groups in a unified form, aligning their specific topics into the general context of the subject. Methods: The methods used in the paper are based on data-driven analysis. Specific databases are used for spectrum analysis, empirical modeling, electron density profile reconstruction, and forecasting techniques. Results: Results are grouped in three sections: Medium- and long-term ionospheric response to the changes in solar and geomagnetic activity, storm-time ionospheric response to the solar and geomagnetic forcing, and modeling and forecasting techniques. Section 1 contains five subsections with results on 27-day response of low-latitude ionosphere to solar extreme-ultraviolet (EUV) radiation, response to the recurrent geomagnetic storms, long-term trends in the upper atmosphere, latitudinal dependence of total electron content on EUV changes, and statistical analysis of ionospheric behavior during prolonged period of solar activity. Section 2 contains a study of ionospheric variations induced by recurrent CIR-driven storm, a case-study of polar cap absorption due to an intense CME, and a statistical study of geographic distribution of so-called E-layer dominated ionosphere. Section 3 comprises empirical models for describing and forecasting TEC, the F-layer critical frequency foF2, and the height of maximum plasma density. A study evaluates the usefulness of effective sunspot number in specifying the ionosphere state. An original method is presented, which retrieves the basic thermospheric parameters from ionospheric sounding data.

  9. The atmospheric excitation of earth orientation changes during MERIT

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Eubanks, T. M.; Steppe, J. A.; Dickey, J. O.

    1986-01-01

    Geodetic estimates of earth orientation variations detected during the MERIT campaign (September 1983-November 1984) are compared with corresponding meteorological data. The geodetic data were obtained using VLBI, lunar laser ranging, and satellite laser ranging and the meteorological data were from the NMC in the U.S. and the European Centre for Medium Range Weather Forecasting (ECMRWF) in the U.K. The effects of changes in pressure, wind, and the inverted barometer ocean response on the excitation of the polar motion and the length of day are examined. The comparison between the meteorological and geodetic data reveals that the equatorial vector component of the atmospheric angular momentum (AAM) has significant annual and semiannual variations. Good correlation is detected between the geodetic polar motion data and the NMC pressure inverted barometer data combined with the ECMRWF wind estimates and semiannual agreement with the NMC pressure data is observed. There is also good correlation between the ECMRWF and NMC polar vector component of the AAM data and the geodetic length of day estimates, and good semiannual agreement with NMC pressure data is noted.

  10. Terminator Wave in the Atmospheres of Mars and Earth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Forbes, J. M.; Moudden, Y.

    2009-12-01

    A terminator wave (TW) was recently discovered in neutral densities measured near 400 km altitude in Earth's thermosphere, and the salient features were simulated in a terrestrial GCM. Although analagous data are not available at Mars, this result prompted us to search for a TW in a high-resolution GCM for Mars. Indeed, a significant TW is found that shares many features with its terrestrial counterpart: In the horizontal plane at 160 km the wave fronts follow the westward-moving dusk terminator, exhibit a horizontal wavelength of order 900-1800 km, and are oriented about 10-30 deg with respect to the terminator. The disturbance originates in the lower atmosphere due to dust absorption of solar radiation, propagates upward with an effective vertical wavelength of order 60 km, and increases in amplitude as the assumed dust distribution extends further away from the surface. The TW density amplitudes for low and elevated dust layers (both with opacities = 1.0) are of order ±15-20% and ±30% at 160 km. Temperature and wind perturbations for the former case are of order ±10-20K and ±30-75 m/s.

  11. Stability of Earth-Like N2 Atmospheres: Implications for Habitability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lammer, Helmut; Kislyakova, Kristina G.; Güdel, Manuel; Holmström, Mats; Erkaev, Nikolai V.; Odert, Petra; Khodachenko, Maxim L.

    According to recent studies related to the EUV heating by the young Sun of Earth's nitrogen atmosphere, upper atmosphere temperatures could rise up to several thousand Kelvin. For fluxes larger ≥ 7 times that of today's Sun the thermosphere changes from a hydrostatic to a dynamically expanding non-hydrostatic regime, adiabatically cools but expands beyond the magnetopause so that the magnetosphere is not able to protect the upper atmosphere from solar wind erosion. A N2-rich terrestrial atmosphere would have been lost within a few million years during the EUV active period of the young Sun ≥ 4 Ga ago. These results indicate that a hydrogen-rich gaseous envelope, which could have remained from Earths protoatmosphere and/or higher atmospheric CO2 amounts may have protected Earth's atmospheric nitrogen inventory against efficient escape to space. An alternative scenario would be that the nitrogen in Earth's early atmosphere was degassed or delivered during the late heavy bombardment period, where the solar EUV flux decreased to values < 7 times of the modern value. Finally, we discuss how EUV heated and extended upper atmospheres and their interaction with the host star's plasma environment could be observed around transiting Earth-like exoplanets at dwarf stars by space observatories such as the WSO-UV. Such future observations could be used to test the discussed atmospheric evolution scenarios and would enhance our understanding on the impact on the activity of the young Sun/star on the early atmospheres of Venus, Earth, Mars and exoplanets.

  12. Ultraviolet radiation climatology of the Earth`s surface and lower atmosphere. Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Madronich, S.; Stamnes, K.

    1999-03-01

    Ultraviolet (UV) radiation is the driving force of tropospheric chemistry and is furthermore detrimental to most living tissues. A three year modeling program was carried out to characterize the UV radiation in the lower atmosphere, with the objective of development a climatology of UV biologically active radiation, and of photo-dissociation reaction rates that are key to tropospheric chemistry. A comprehensive model, the Tropospheric Ultraviolet-Visible (TUV) model, was developed and made available to the scientific community. The model incorporates updated spectroscopic data, recent advances in radiative transfer theory, and allows flexible customization for the needs of different users. The TUV model has been used in conjunction with satellite-derived measurements of total atmospheric ozone and cloud amount, to develop a global climatology of UV radiation reaching the surface of the Earth. Initial validation studies are highly encouraging, showing that model predictions agree with direct measurements to ca. 5--10% at times when environmental conditions are well known, and to 10--30% for monthly averages when local environmental conditions can only be estimated remotely from satellite-based measurements. Additional validation studies are continuing.

  13. Photochemistry in Terrestrial Exoplanet Atmospheres. III. Photochemistry and Thermochemistry in Thick Atmospheres on Super Earths and Mini Neptunes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hu, Renyu; Seager, Sara

    2014-03-01

    Some super Earths and mini Neptunes will likely have thick atmospheres that are not H2-dominated. We have developed a photochemistry-thermochemistry kinetic-transport model for exploring the compositions of thick atmospheres on super Earths and mini Neptunes, applicable for both H2-dominated atmospheres and non-H2-dominated atmospheres. Using this model to study thick atmospheres for wide ranges of temperatures and elemental abundances, we classify them into hydrogen-rich atmospheres, water-rich atmospheres, oxygen-rich atmospheres, and hydrocarbon-rich atmospheres. We find that carbon has to be in the form of CO2 rather than CH4 or CO in a H2-depleted water-dominated thick atmosphere and that the preferred loss of light elements from an oxygen-poor carbon-rich atmosphere leads to the formation of unsaturated hydrocarbons (C2H2 and C2H4). We apply our self-consistent atmosphere models to compute spectra and diagnostic features for known transiting low-mass exoplanets GJ 1214 b, HD 97658 b, and 55 Cnc e. For GJ 1214 b, we find that (1) C2H2 features at 1.0 and 1.5 μm in transmission and C2H2 and C2H4 features at 9-14 μm in thermal emission are diagnostic for hydrocarbon-rich atmospheres; (2) a detection of water-vapor features and a confirmation of the nonexistence of methane features would provide sufficient evidence for a water-dominated atmosphere. In general, our simulations show that chemical stability has to be taken into account when interpreting the spectrum of a super Earth/mini Neptune. Water-dominated atmospheres only exist for carbon to oxygen ratios much lower than the solar ratio, suggesting that this kind of atmospheres could be rare.

  14. Runaway greenhouse atmospheres: Applications to Earth and Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kasting, James F.

    1991-01-01

    Runaway greenhouse atmospheres are discussed from a theoretical standpoint and with respect to various practical situation in which they might occur. The following subject areas are covered: (1) runaway greenhouse atmospheres; (2) moist greenhouse atmospheres; (3) loss of water from Venus; (4) steam atmosphere during accretion; and (5) the continuously habitable zone.

  15. The photochemistry of atmospheres: Earth, the other planets, and comets

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Levine, J. S. (Editor)

    1985-01-01

    Papers on the photochemistry of the early atmosphere, the troposphere, stratosphere, and upper atmosphere are presented. Consideration is given to the effect of chemical constituents on the climate and atmosphere. Topics discussed include the composition of the atmospheres of Venus, Mars, the outer planets and their satellites, and the chemical changes which occur in comets.

  16. Ertel potential vorticity versus Bernoulli streamfunction in earth's extratropical atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Du, J.; Dowling, T. E.; Bradley, M. E.

    2015-06-01

    We investigate the correlation of Ertel potential vorticity, Q, with Bernoulli streamfunction, B, on potential-temperature surfaces, θ, in Earth's atmosphere poleward of ±30° latitude. For input, we use the 1979-2010 CMAM30-SD specified-dynamics data set. We fit the model Q=Q0exp⁡>[-λ0>(B-B0>)>] separately in the midlatitude >[30°,60°>) and polar >[60°,90°>] regions, and nondimensionalize the slope parameter as λ̂0≡>(NH>¯>)2λ0. In the troposphere, the peak of λ̂0 is approximately 2-3 in winter and 3-4 in summer in both regions. In the stratosphere during winter, both λ̂0|midlat and λ̂0|polar hover around unity. In spring and fall, λ̂0|polar continues to hover near unity, but λ̂0|midlat rises by a factor of two, with its maximum located at θ˜700 to 900 K. In summer, the polar value drops to |λ̂0|polar≪1, while the midlatitude value swings negative to λ̂0|midlat˜-2 to -3. In the mesosphere, λ̂0 exhibits incessant fluctuations with values that usually fall within the range 0 to 1. The results support the paradigm |λ̂0|≪1 for dynamically active regions primarily in the vicinity of θ˜3000-4000 K (˜ 62-72 km) in the mesosphere, whereas except in summer, we get the simple result that the monthly climate-averaged profile, <λ̂0>, in the polar regions is nearly unity across the entire stratosphere. During extended recoveries following SSWs, the midlatitude vertical profile develops a peak near 2000 K that descends over the course of a few weeks, alongside the descent of the elevated stratopause in the polar region.

  17. THERMAL ESCAPE FROM SUPER EARTH ATMOSPHERES IN THE HABITABLE ZONES OF M STARS

    SciTech Connect

    Tian Feng

    2009-09-20

    A fundamental question for exoplanet habitability is the long-term stability of the planet's atmosphere. We numerically solve a one-dimensional multi-component hydrodynamic thermosphere/ionosphere model to examine the thermal and chemical responses of the primary CO{sub 2} atmospheres of heavy super Earths (6-10 Earth masses) in the habitable zones of typical low-mass M stars to the enhanced soft X-ray and ultraviolet (XUV) fluxes associated with the prolonged high-activity levels of M stars. The results show that such atmospheres are stable against thermal escape, even for M stars XUV enhancements as large as 1000 compared to the present Earth. It is possible that the CO{sub 2}-dominant atmospheres of super Earths in the habitable zones of M stars could potentially contain modest amount of free oxygen as a result of more efficient atmosphere escape of carbon than oxygen instead of photosynthesis.

  18. Oxidants and oxidation in the Earth`s atmosphere. Final technical report, 1 June 1994-30 May 1995

    SciTech Connect

    1995-02-01

    The 1994 BOC Priestley Conference was held at Bucknell University in Lewisburg, Pennsylvania, from June 24 through June 27, 1994. This conference, managed by the American Chemical Society (ACS), was a joint celebration with the Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC) commemorating Joseph Priestley`s arrival in the U.S. and his discovery of oxygen. The basic theme of the conference was `Oxidants and Oxidation in the Earth`s Atmosphere,` with a keynote lecture on the history of ozone. A distinguished group of U.S. and international atmospheric chemists addressed the issues dominating current research and policy agendas. Topics crucial to the atmospheric chemistry of global change and local and regional air pollution were discussed. The program for the conference included four technical sessions on the following topics: (1) Oxidative Fate of Atmospheric Pollutants; (2) Photochemical Smog and Ozone; (3) Stratospheric Ozone; and (4) Global Tropospheric Ozone.

  19. The atmospheres of the earth and the other planets: Origin, evolution and composition

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Levine, Joel S.

    1988-01-01

    The current understanding of the composition, chemistry, and structure of the atmospheres of the other planets and the origin, early history, and evolution of the earth's atmosphere is reviewed. The information on the atmospheres of the other planets is based on the successful Mariner, Viking, Pioneer, and Voyager missions to these planets. The information on the origin, early history, and evolution of the atmosphere, which is somewhat speculative, is largely based on numerical studies with geochemical and photochemical models.

  20. Massive impact-induced release of carbon and sulfur gases in the early Earth's atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marchi, S.; Black, B. A.; Elkins-Tanton, L. T.; Bottke, W. F.

    2016-09-01

    Recent revisions to our understanding of the collisional history of the Hadean and early-Archean Earth indicate that large collisions may have been an important geophysical process. In this work we show that the early bombardment flux of large impactors (>100 km) facilitated the atmospheric release of greenhouse gases (particularly CO2) from Earth's mantle. Depending on the timescale for the drawdown of atmospheric CO2, the Earth's surface could have been subject to prolonged clement surface conditions or multiple freeze-thaw cycles. The bombardment also delivered and redistributed to the surface large quantities of sulfur, one of the most important elements for life. The stochastic occurrence of large collisions could provide insights on why the Earth and Venus, considered Earth's twin planet, exhibit radically different atmospheres.

  1. Modeling of atmospheric-coupled Rayleigh waves on planets with atmosphere: From Earth observation to Mars and Venus perspectives.

    PubMed

    Lognonné, Philippe; Karakostas, Foivos; Rolland, Lucie; Nishikawa, Yasuhiro

    2016-08-01

    Acoustic coupling between solid Earth and atmosphere has been observed since the 1960s, first from ground-based seismic, pressure, and ionospheric sensors and since 20 years with various satellite measurements, including with global positioning system (GPS) satellites. This coupling leads to the excitation of the Rayleigh surface waves by local atmospheric sources such as large natural explosions from volcanoes, meteor atmospheric air-bursts, or artificial explosions. It contributes also in the continuous excitation of Rayleigh waves and associated normal modes by atmospheric winds and pressure fluctuations. The same coupling allows the observation of Rayleigh waves in the thermosphere most of the time through ionospheric monitoring with Doppler sounders or GPS. The authors review briefly in this paper observations made on Earth and describe the general frame of the theory enabling the computation of Rayleigh waves for models of telluric planets with atmosphere. The authors then focus on Mars and Venus and give in both cases the atmospheric properties of the Rayleigh normal modes and associated surface waves compared to Earth. The authors then conclude on the observation perspectives especially for Rayleigh waves excited by atmospheric sources on Mars and for remote ionospheric observations of Rayleigh waves excited by quakes on Venus. PMID:27586770

  2. Modeling of atmospheric-coupled Rayleigh waves on planets with atmosphere: From Earth observation to Mars and Venus perspectives.

    PubMed

    Lognonné, Philippe; Karakostas, Foivos; Rolland, Lucie; Nishikawa, Yasuhiro

    2016-08-01

    Acoustic coupling between solid Earth and atmosphere has been observed since the 1960s, first from ground-based seismic, pressure, and ionospheric sensors and since 20 years with various satellite measurements, including with global positioning system (GPS) satellites. This coupling leads to the excitation of the Rayleigh surface waves by local atmospheric sources such as large natural explosions from volcanoes, meteor atmospheric air-bursts, or artificial explosions. It contributes also in the continuous excitation of Rayleigh waves and associated normal modes by atmospheric winds and pressure fluctuations. The same coupling allows the observation of Rayleigh waves in the thermosphere most of the time through ionospheric monitoring with Doppler sounders or GPS. The authors review briefly in this paper observations made on Earth and describe the general frame of the theory enabling the computation of Rayleigh waves for models of telluric planets with atmosphere. The authors then focus on Mars and Venus and give in both cases the atmospheric properties of the Rayleigh normal modes and associated surface waves compared to Earth. The authors then conclude on the observation perspectives especially for Rayleigh waves excited by atmospheric sources on Mars and for remote ionospheric observations of Rayleigh waves excited by quakes on Venus.

  3. Earth curvature and atmospheric refraction effects on radar signal propagation.

    SciTech Connect

    Doerry, Armin Walter

    2013-01-01

    The earth isnt flat, and radar beams dont travel straight. This becomes more noticeable as range increases, particularly at shallow depression/grazing angles. This report explores models for characterizing this behavior.

  4. Lightning-made Waves in Earth's Atmosphere Leak Into Space

    NASA Video Gallery

    As lightning flashes, it creates low frequency waves that circle Earth, a phenomenon known as Schumann resonance. Much of the energy from the waves is trapped between the ground and the ionosphere ...

  5. Atmosphere, ocean, and land: Critical gaps in Earth system models

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Prinn, Ronald G.; Hartley, Dana

    1992-01-01

    We briefly review current knowledge and pinpoint some of the major areas of uncertainty for the following fundamental processes: (1) convection, condensation nuclei, and cloud formation; (2) oceanic circulation and its coupling to the atmosphere and cryosphere; (3) land surface hydrology and hydrology-vegetation coupling; (4) biogeochemistry of greenhouse gases; and (5) upper atmospheric chemistry and circulation.

  6. Climatic consequences of very high carbon dioxide levels in the earth's early atmosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kasting, James F.; Ackerman, Thomas P.

    1986-01-01

    The possible consequences of very high carbon dioxide concentrations in the earth's early atmosphere have been investigated with a radiative-convective climate model. The early atmosphere would apparently have been stable against the onset of a runaway greenhouse (that is, the complete evaporation of the oceans) for carbon dioxide pressures up to at least 100 bars. A 10- to 20-bar carbon dioxide atmosphere, such as may have existed during the first several hundred million years of the earth's history, would have had a surface temperature of approximately 85 to 110 C. The early stratosphere should have been dry, thereby precluding the possibility of an oxygenic prebiotic atmosphere caused by photodissociation of water vapor followed by escape of hydrogen to space. Earth's present atmosphere also appears to be stable against a carbon dioxide-induced runaway greenhouse.

  7. Ionization in Earth's atmosphere following the solar storm on January 20, 2005

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Seripienlert, A.; Mitthumsiri, W.; Saiz, A.; Ruffolo, D. J.; Mangeard, P. S.; Tortermpun, U.

    2014-12-01

    To estimate possible effects of atmospheric ionization on clouds and Earth's climate as well as radiation exposure of air travelers and aircraft electronics due to space weather, relativistic solar ions are the only solar particles of concern because the less energetic particles do not penetrate to cloud/aircraft altitudes. Some solar storms produce relativistic ions that lead to showers of secondary particles in Earth's atmosphere and generate signals in ground-based detectors such as neutron monitors at a rate that can be observed above the background due to galactic cosmic rays, hence the term ground-level enhancements (GLEs). In this work we study the January 20, 2005 event, one of the most intense GLEs ever observed. From the bare counter to neutron monitor count rate ratio at South Pole, we estimate a spectral index in rigidity of 5.0. From the Spaceship Earth network, supplemented to comprise 13 polar neutron monitors, we model the time profile of relativistic solar ions impinging on Earth's atmosphere in the polar regions. We then perform Monte Carlo simulations using a realistic atmospheric model to determine ionization as a function of altitude and time in Earth's atmosphere. The results will allow us to investigate a possible connection between solar activity and Earth's climate as mediated by the cosmic ray flux, atmospheric ionization, and cloud formation. This work is partially supported by Thailand Research Fund and a Postdoctoral Fellowship from Mahidol University.

  8. L2 Earth atmosphere observatory : formation guidance, metrology, and control synthesis

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Acikmese, Behcet A.; Mettler, Edward; Breckenridge, William G.; Macenka, Steven A.; Tubbs, Eldred F.

    2004-01-01

    This paper discusses the results of research sponsored by the NASA Revolutionary Aerospace Systems Concepts (RASC) program, and includes the synthesis and analysis of the guidance, metrology and control for a two-spacecraft formation in a unique continuously powered orbit near the Sun-Earth L2 Lagrange point observing the illuminated atmosphere of the Earth while it is continuously occulting the Sun.

  9. Determining How Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide Concentrations Have Changed during the History of the Earth

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Badger, Marcus P. S.; Pancost, Richard D.; Harrison, Timothy G.

    2011-01-01

    The reconstruction of ancient atmospheric carbon dioxide concentrations is essential to understanding the history of the Earth and life. It is also an important guide to identifying the sensitivity of the Earth system to this greenhouse gas and, therefore, constraining its future impact on climate. However, determining the concentration of…

  10. Impact of atmospheric refraction: how deeply can we probe exo-earth's atmospheres during primary eclipse observations?

    SciTech Connect

    Bétrémieux, Yan; Kaltenegger, Lisa

    2014-08-10

    Most models used to predict or fit exoplanet transmission spectra do not include all the effects of atmospheric refraction. Namely, the angular size of the star with respect to the planet can limit the lowest altitude, or highest density and pressure, probed during primary eclipses as no rays passing below this critical altitude can reach the observer. We discuss this geometrical effect of refraction for all exoplanets and tabulate the critical altitude, density, and pressure for an exoplanet identical to Earth with a 1 bar N{sub 2}/O{sub 2} atmosphere as a function of both the incident stellar flux (Venus, Earth, and Mars-like) at the top of the atmosphere and the spectral type (O5-M9) of the host star. We show that such a habitable exo-Earth can be probed to a surface pressure of 1 bar only around the coolest stars. We present 0.4-5.0 μm model transmission spectra of Earth's atmosphere viewed as a transiting exoplanet, and show how atmospheric refraction modifies the transmission spectrum depending on the spectral type of the host star. We demonstrate that refraction is another phenomenon that can potentially explain flat transmission spectra over some spectral regions.

  11. Photochemistry in terrestrial exoplanet atmospheres. III. Photochemistry and thermochemistry in thick atmospheres on super Earths and mini Neptunes

    SciTech Connect

    Hu, Renyu; Seager, Sara

    2014-03-20

    Some super Earths and mini Neptunes will likely have thick atmospheres that are not H{sub 2}-dominated. We have developed a photochemistry-thermochemistry kinetic-transport model for exploring the compositions of thick atmospheres on super Earths and mini Neptunes, applicable for both H{sub 2}-dominated atmospheres and non-H{sub 2}-dominated atmospheres. Using this model to study thick atmospheres for wide ranges of temperatures and elemental abundances, we classify them into hydrogen-rich atmospheres, water-rich atmospheres, oxygen-rich atmospheres, and hydrocarbon-rich atmospheres. We find that carbon has to be in the form of CO{sub 2} rather than CH{sub 4} or CO in a H{sub 2}-depleted water-dominated thick atmosphere and that the preferred loss of light elements from an oxygen-poor carbon-rich atmosphere leads to the formation of unsaturated hydrocarbons (C{sub 2}H{sub 2} and C{sub 2}H{sub 4}). We apply our self-consistent atmosphere models to compute spectra and diagnostic features for known transiting low-mass exoplanets GJ 1214 b, HD 97658 b, and 55 Cnc e. For GJ 1214 b, we find that (1) C{sub 2}H{sub 2} features at 1.0 and 1.5 μm in transmission and C{sub 2}H{sub 2} and C{sub 2}H{sub 4} features at 9-14 μm in thermal emission are diagnostic for hydrocarbon-rich atmospheres; (2) a detection of water-vapor features and a confirmation of the nonexistence of methane features would provide sufficient evidence for a water-dominated atmosphere. In general, our simulations show that chemical stability has to be taken into account when interpreting the spectrum of a super Earth/mini Neptune. Water-dominated atmospheres only exist for carbon to oxygen ratios much lower than the solar ratio, suggesting that this kind of atmospheres could be rare.

  12. The atmospheric circulation of the super Earth GJ 1214b: Dependence on composition and metallicity

    SciTech Connect

    Kataria, T.; Showman, A. P.; Fortney, J. J.; Marley, M. S.; Freedman, R. S.

    2014-04-20

    We present three-dimensional atmospheric circulation models of GJ 1214b, a 2.7 Earth-radius, 6.5 Earth-mass super Earth detected by the MEarth survey. Here we explore the planet's circulation as a function of atmospheric metallicity and atmospheric composition, modeling atmospheres with a low mean molecular weight (MMW; i.e., H{sub 2}-dominated) and a high MMW (i.e., water- and CO{sub 2}-dominated). We find that atmospheres with a low MMW have strong day-night temperature variations at pressures above the infrared photosphere that lead to equatorial superrotation. For these atmospheres, the enhancement of atmospheric opacities with increasing metallicity lead to shallower atmospheric heating, larger day-night temperature variations, and hence stronger superrotation. In comparison, atmospheres with a high MMW have larger day-night and equator-to-pole temperature variations than low MMW atmospheres, but differences in opacity structure and energy budget lead to differences in jet structure. The circulation of a water-dominated atmosphere is dominated by equatorial superrotation, while the circulation of a CO{sub 2}-dominated atmosphere is instead dominated by high-latitude jets. By comparing emergent flux spectra and light curves for 50× solar and water-dominated compositions, we show that observations in emission can break the degeneracy in determining the atmospheric composition of GJ 1214b. The variation in opacity with wavelength for the water-dominated atmosphere leads to large phase variations within water bands and small phase variations outside of water bands. The 50× solar atmosphere, however, yields small variations within water bands and large phase variations at other characteristic wavelengths. These observations would be much less sensitive to clouds, condensates, and hazes than transit observations.

  13. Advancing Solid Earth Science through Improved Atmosphere Modeling

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Niell, A. E.

    2004-01-01

    We proposed to investigate and develop better models for the effect of the hydrostatic and water vapor components of the neutral atmosphere on delay for VLBI and GPS by using a Numerical Weather Model to better simulate realistic atmosphere conditions. By using a raytrace calculation through the model atmosphere at the times of actual VLBI observations, the potential improvement in geodetic results can be evaluated. Also, by calculating the actual variation of delays with elevation and azimuth, the errors in current mapping function models can be assessed. The VLBI data to be initially analyzed are the fifteen days of the CONT02 sessions of 2002 October which included eight stations. There are three segments to the research. 1) The PSU/NCAR fifth generation mesoscale numerical weather model (MM5) will be used to provide the state of the atmosphere with highest horizontal resolution of 3 km. 2) A three-dimensional raytrace program will be developed to determine the delays through the model atmosphere at the times and in the directions of the VLBI observations for each of the sites. 3) The VLBI data will be analyzed using both standard models for the atmosphere mapping functions and the mapping functions derived from the NWM raytracing.

  14. What can Venus and Mars tell us about Sun's direct influence on Earth's Atmosphere?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lundin, R.

    2010-09-01

    Venus and Mars, Earth's sister planets, are similar but also very different compared to the Earth. The mass-density and surface properties bear certain commonality, but the atmospheric composition, the temperature and the surface pressure on Venus and Mars are very different compared to the Earth. Venus and Mars are arid planets with atmospheres dominated by a greenhouse gas CO2 (>95%), while the Earth's atmosphere is dominated by molecular Nitrogen and Oxygen. The main greenhouse gas in the Earth's atmosphere is water, with a minor contribution of CO2. Bearing these differences in mind, what can we possibly learn from Mars and Venus about the solar influence on the Earth's atmosphere? The answer can be found in how solar forcing affects a planetary atmosphere, more specifically the impact of solar EUV and solar wind variability on a planetary atmosphere. The lack of a strong intrinsic magnetic field on Mars and Venus means that solar wind forcing has a global effect on the upper atmosphere of Mars and Venus. Conversely, the Earth's intrinsic dipole magnetic field alleviates the forcing to narrow zones near the magnetic poles. Results obtained from Venus and Mars orbiters imply that solar wind forcing leads to a long-term gradual removal of atmospheric constituents. New information from ESAs Mars Express and Venus Express orbiters suggests short-term solar wind forcing effects as well, especially in the polar region. While the impact of solar forcing on the "unprotected" planets Venus and Mars seems conceivable, one might argue that similar forcing effects are unlikely on a magnetically protected planet. Short-term "space weather" effects on the Earth's tropospheric circulatory system have been reported in the past, but the effects have usually been discarded using arguments that such a weak forcing is unlikely to have any implications whatsoever on the Earth's weather system. However, considering the forcing observed in e.g. the Venus polar region, solar forcing

  15. Greenhouse warming by CH4 in the atmosphere of early Earth.

    PubMed

    Pavlov, A A; Kasting, J F; Brown, L L; Rages, K A; Freedman, R

    2000-05-25

    Earth appears to have been warm during its early history despite the faintness of the young Sun. Greenhouse warming by gaseous CO2 and H2O by itself is in conflict with constraints on atmospheric CO2 levels derived from paleosols for early Earth. Here we explore whether greenhouse warming by methane could have been important. We find that a CH4 mixing ratio of 10(-4) (100 ppmv) or more in Earth's early atmosphere would provide agreement with the paleosol data from 2.8 Ga. Such a CH4 concentration could have been readily maintained by methanogenic bacteria, which are thought to have been an important component of the biota at that time. Elimination of the methane component of the greenhouse by oxidation of the atmosphere at about 2.3-2.4 Ga could have triggered the Earth's first widespread glaciation.

  16. Atmospheric Correction Prototype Algorithm for High Spatial Resolution Multispectral Earth Observing Imaging Systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pagnutti, Mary

    2006-01-01

    This viewgraph presentation reviews the creation of a prototype algorithm for atmospheric correction using high spatial resolution earth observing imaging systems. The objective of the work was to evaluate accuracy of a prototype algorithm that uses satellite-derived atmospheric products to generate scene reflectance maps for high spatial resolution (HSR) systems. This presentation focused on preliminary results of only the satellite-based atmospheric correction algorithm.

  17. X-38: Artist Concept of Re-Entering Earth's Atmosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1997-01-01

    This is an artist's depiction of NASA's proposed Crew Return Vehicle (CRV) re-entering the earth's atmosphere. A team of NASA researchers began free flight tests of the X-38, a technology demonstrator for the CRV, at NASA's Dryden Flight Research Center, Edwards, California, in 1998. The CRV is being designed as a 'lifeboat' for the International Space Station The X-38 Crew Return Vehicle (CRV) research project is designed to develop the technology for a prototype emergency crew return vehicle, or lifeboat, for the International Space Station. The project is also intended to develop a crew return vehicle design that could be modified for other uses, such as a joint U.S. and international human spacecraft that could be launched on the French Ariane-5 Booster. The X-38 project is using available technology and off-the-shelf equipment to significantly decrease development costs. Original estimates to develop a capsule-type crew return vehicle were estimated at more than $2 billion. X-38 project officials have estimated that development costs for the X-38 concept will be approximately one quarter of the original estimate. Off-the-shelf technology is not necessarily 'old' technology. Many of the technologies being used in the X-38 project have never before been applied to a human-flight spacecraft. For example, the X-38 flight computer is commercial equipment currently used in aircraft and the flight software operating system is a commercial system already in use in many aerospace applications. The video equipment for the X-38 is existing equipment, some of which has already flown on the space shuttle for previous NASA experiments. The X-38's primary navigational equipment, the Inertial Navigation System/Global Positioning System, is a unit already in use on Navy fighters. The X-38 electromechanical actuators come from previous joint NASA, U.S. Air Force, and U.S. Navy research and development projects. Finally, an existing special coating developed by NASA will be used

  18. Analysis of longwave radiation for the Earth-atmosphere system

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tiwari, S. N.; Venuru, C. S.; Subramanian, S. V.

    1983-01-01

    Accurate radiative transfer models are used to determine the upwelling atmospheric radiance and net radiative flux in the entire longwave spectral range. The validity of the quasi-random band model is established by comparing the results of this model with those of line-by-line formulations and with available theoretical and experimental results. Existing radiative transfer models and computer codes are modified to include various surface and atmospheric effects (surface reflection, nonequilibrium radiation, and cloud effects). The program is used to evaluate the radiative flux in clear atmosphere, provide sensitivity analysis of upwelling radiance in the presence of clouds, and determine the effects of various climatological parameters on the upwelling radiation and anisotropic function. Homogeneous and nonhomogeneous gas emissivities can also be evaluated under different conditions.

  19. Models of earth's atmosphere (90 to 2500 km)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1973-01-01

    This monograph replaces a monograph on the upper atmosphere which was a computerized version of Jacchia's model. The current model has a range from 90 to 2500 km. In addition to the computerized model, a quick-look prediction method is given that may be used to estimate the density for any time and spatial location without using a computer.

  20. (abstract) Odd Hydrogen in the Atmospheres of Earth and Mars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nair, Hari; Allen, Mark; Yung, Yuk L.

    1994-01-01

    The Martian atmosphere has many features in common with the terrestrial mesosphere. Both share similar pressure and temperature ranges, and much of the same chemistry operates in each. For example, the radical species H, OH, and H(sub 2)O, which comprise the odd hydrogen family, are of central importance in the catalytic destruction of CO and O(sub 3) in both atmospheres. The inclusion of recent chemical kinetics data, specifically temperature dependent CO(sub 2) absorption cross-sections, into our one dimensional photochemical model of the Martial atmosphere shows that oxidation of CO by odd hydrogen is too efficient. The incorporation of smaller cross sections for CO(sub 2) leads to an enhanced photolysis rate of water vapor, increasing odd hydrogen to the point where the predicted mixing ratio of CO in our model is substantially less than the observed value of 6.5 x 10(sup -4). Interestingly, most photochemical models of the terrestrial mesosphere underestimate the CO and O(sub 3) densities using currently accepted photodissociation and kinetic rate coefficients. This has also been attributed to an overabundance of odd hydrogen in the models. We shall show that agreement between models and observations of CO in the Martian atmosphere as well as of CO and O(sub 3) in the terrestrial mesosphere can be achieved by revising the rate constants for the reactions OH + HO(sub 2) and CO + OH within their published uncertainties. The fact that similar revisions alleviate discrepancies in both the terrestrial and Martian atmospheres warrants a re-evaluation of these key rate constants at the appropriate temperatures and pressures.

  1. Comparing atmospheric chemical disequilibrium of Earth and Mars to detect the traces of Life

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Simoncini, Eugenio; Brucato, John Robert; Grassi, Tommaso

    Thanks to rover explorations, satellite mapping and in loco measurements, there are many evidence nowadays that early Mars could have hold extended oceans of liquid water. This makes early Mars similar to early Earth, and a deeper understanding of the conditions which led to the emergence of Life on Earth is needed. It has long been observed that Earth's atmosphere is uniquely far from its thermochemical equilibrium state in terms of its chemical composition. Studying this state of disequilibrium is important for its potential role in the detection of life on other suitable planets [1][2][3]. We developed a methodology to calculate the extent of atmospheric chemical disequilibrium [3][4]. This tool allows us to understand, on a thermodynamic basis, how life affected - and still affects - geochemical processes on Earth, and if other planetary atmospheres are habitable or have a disequilibrium similar to the Earth's one. A new computational framework called KROME has been applied to atmospheric models in order to give a correct computation of reactionś kinetics [5]. In this work we present a first computation of the extent of disequilibrium for the present and early Earth and Mars atmospheres, considering the specific contribution of the different atmospheric processes, such as thermochemical reactions, eddy diffusion, photochemistry, deposition, and the effect of the biosphere. We then assess the effect of life on atmospheric disequilibrium of the Earth and provide a comparison between “alive” and “dead” Earth, present and (plausible) early Mars. Our results provide a comprehensive analysis of atmospheric disequilibrium for rocky and habitable planets, which can be also used for the detection of habitable conditions on farther planetary bodies. [1] Lovelock, J. E.: A physical basis for life detection experiments, Nature, 207, 568 (1965) [2] Kleidon, A., Physics of Life Reviews, 7, 424 (2010) [3] Simoncini E., Grassi T., Disequilibrium in planetary

  2. Secondary Cosmic Ray Particles Due to GCR Interactions in the Earth's Atmosphere

    SciTech Connect

    Battistoni, G.; Cerutti, F.; Fasso, A.; Ferrari, A.; Garzelli, M.V.; Lantz, M.; Muraro, S. Pinsky, L.S.; Ranft, J.; Roesler, S.; Sala, P.R.; /Milan U. /INFN, Milan

    2009-06-16

    Primary GCR interact with the Earth's atmosphere originating atmospheric showers, thus giving rise to fluxes of secondary particles in the atmosphere. Electromagnetic and hadronic interactions interplay in the production of these particles, whose detection is performed by means of complementary techniques in different energy ranges and at different depths in the atmosphere, down to the Earth's surface. Monte Carlo codes are essential calculation tools which can describe the complexity of the physics of these phenomena, thus allowing the analysis of experimental data. However, these codes are affected by important uncertainties, concerning, in particular, hadronic physics at high energy. In this paper we shall report some results concerning inclusive particle fluxes and atmospheric shower properties as obtained using the FLUKA transport and interaction code. Some emphasis will also be given to the validation of the physics models of FLUKA involved in these calculations.

  3. NASA's Earth Observing System (EOS): Observing the Atmosphere, Land, Oceans, and Ice from Space

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    King, Michael D.

    2005-01-01

    The Earth Observing System (EOS) is a space-based observing system comprised of a series of satellite sensors by whch scientists can monitor the Earth, a Data and Information System (EOSDIS) enabling researchers worldwide to access the satellite data, and an interdisciplinary science research program to interpret the satellite data. During this year, the last of the first series of EOS missions, Aura, was launched. Aura is designed exclusively to conduct research on the composition, chemistry, and dynamics of the Earth's upper and lower atmosphere, employing multiple instruments on a single spacecraft. Aura is the third in a series of major Earth observing satellites to study the environment and climate change and is part of NASA's Earth Science Enterprise. The first and second missions, Terra and Aqua, are designed to study the land, oceans, atmospheric constituents (aerosols, clouds, temperature, and water vapor), and the Earth's radiation budget. The other seven EOS spacecraft include satellites to study (i) land cover & land use change, (ii) solar irradiance and solar spectral variation, (iii) ice volume, (iv) ocean processes (vector wind and sea surface topography), and (v) vertical variations of clouds, water vapor, and aerosols up to and including the stratosphere. Aura's chemistry measurements will also follow up on measurements that began with NASA's Upper Atmosphere Research Satellite and continue the record of satellite ozone data collected from the TOMS missions. In this presentation I will describe how scientists are using EOS data to examine the health of the earth's atmosphere, including atmospheric chemistry, aerosol properties, and cloud properties, with a special look at the latest earth observing mission, Aura.

  4. NASA's Earth Observing System (EOS): Observing the Atmosphere, Land, Oceans, and Ice from Space

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    King, Michael D.

    2004-01-01

    The Earth Observing System (EOS) is a space-based observing system comprised of a series of satellite sensors by which scientists can monitor the Earth, a Data and Information System (EOSDIS) enabling researchers worldwide to access the satellite data, and an interdisciplinary science research program to interpret the satellite data. During this year, the last of the first series of EOS missions, Aura, was launched. Aura is designed exclusively to conduct research on the composition, chemistry, and dynamics of the Earth's upper and lower atmosphere, employing multiple instruments on a single spacecraft. Aura is the third in a series of major Earth observing satellites to study the environment and climate change and is part of NASA's Earth Science Enterprise. The first and second missions, Terra and Aqua, are designed to study the land, oceans, atmospheric constituents (aerosols, clouds, temperature, and water vapor), and the Earth's radiation budget. The other seven EOS spacecraft include satellites to study (i) land cover & land use change, (ii) solar irradiance and solar spectral variation, (iii) ice volume, (iv) ocean processes (vector wind and sea surface topography), and (v) vertical variations of clouds, water vapor, and aerosols up to and including the stratosphere. Aura's chemistry measurements will also follow up on measurements that began with NASA's Upper Atmosphere Research Satellite and continue the record of satellite ozone data collected from the TOMS missions. In this presentation I will describe how scientists are using EOS data to examine the health of the earth's atmosphere, including atmospheric chemistry, aerosol properties, and cloud properties, with a special but not exclusive look at the latest earth observing mission, Aura.

  5. Hydrogen and climate in primitive terrestrial and super-Earth atmospheres (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wordsworth, R.

    2013-12-01

    For the three terrestrial planets with significant atmospheres in the Solar System (Earth, Venus and Mars), present-day conditions are oxidizing, with combinations of CO2, N2, O2 and H2O dominating by mass and in terms of the greenhouse effect. However, primitive terrestrial or ';super-Earth' exoplanet atmospheres may be much more reducing (i.e., hydrogen-rich), with major implications for climate, composition, and pre-biotic chemistry. Here I discuss recent work on the role of hydrogen in terrestrial planetary atmospheres, with a particular focus on the early Earth. I describe how collision-induced absorption (CIA) by hydrogen may have significantly warmed Earth's surface in the Archean and Hadean by blocking the critical water vapour absorption window at 800-1200 cm-1. This warming may have helped mitigate the faint young Sun effect early on. After the emergence of widespread methanogenesis, the consumption of H2 and CO2 should have led to a global shift in climate, with potentially observable consequences in the geological record. Because of variations in planetary mass, stellar XUV input and outgassing rates, hydrogen is also likely to be an important component of many super-Earth atmospheres. As I will discuss, this should have a significant effect on climate evolution and the carbon cycle on such planets, which should be considered in future predictions of atmospheric spectra and biosignatures.

  6. Atmospheric correction of Earth-observation remote sensing images by Monte Carlo method

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hadjit, Hanane; Oukebdane, Abdelaziz; Belbachir, Ahmad Hafid

    2013-10-01

    In earth observation, the atmospheric particles contaminate severely, through absorption and scattering, the reflected electromagnetic signal from the earth surface. It will be greatly beneficial for land surface characterization if we can remove these atmospheric effects from imagery and retrieve surface reflectance that characterizes the surface properties with the purpose of atmospheric correction. Giving the geometric parameters of the studied image and assessing the parameters describing the state of the atmosphere, it is possible to evaluate the atmospheric reflectance, and upward and downward transmittances which take part in the garbling data obtained from the image. To that end, an atmospheric correction algorithm for high spectral resolution data over land surfaces has been developed. It is designed to obtain the main atmospheric parameters needed in the image correction and the interpretation of optical observations. It also estimates the optical characteristics of the Earth-observation imagery (LANDSAT and SPOT). The physics underlying the problem of solar radiation propagations that takes into account multiple scattering and sphericity of the atmosphere has been treated using Monte Carlo techniques.

  7. Revised Atmospheric Angular Momentum Series Related to Earth's Variable Rotation under Consideration of Surface Topography

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zhou, Y. H.; Salstein, D. A.; Chen, J. L.

    2006-01-01

    The atmospheric angular momentum is closely related to variations in the Earth rotation. The atmospheric excitation function (AEF), or namely atmospheric effective angular momentum function, is introduced in studying the atmospheric excitation of the Earth's variable rotation. It may be separated into two portions, i.e, the "wind" terms due to the atmospheric motion relative to the mantle and the "pressure" terms due to the variations of atmospheric mass distribution evident through surface pressure changes. The AEF wind terms during the period of 1948-2004 are re-processed from the NCEP/NCAR (National Centers for Environmental Prediction-National Center for Atmospheric Research) reanalysis 6-hourly wind and pressure fields. Some previous calculations were approximate, in that the wind terms were integrated from an isobaric lower boundary of 1000 hPa. To consider the surface topography effect, however, the AEF is computed by integration using the winds from the Earth's surface to 10 hPa, the top atmospheric model level, instead of from 1000 hPa. For these two cases, only a minor difference, equivalent to approx. 0.004 milliseconds in length-of-day variation, exists with respect to the axial wind term. However, considerable differences, equivalent to 5-6 milliarcseconds in polar motion, are found regarding equatorial wind terms. We further compare the total equatorial AEF (with and without the topographic effect) with the polar motion excitation function (PMEF) during the period of 1980-2003. The equatorial AEF gets generally closer to the PMEF, and improved coherences are found between them when the topography effect is included. Keywords: Atmospheric angular momentum, Atmospheric excitation function, Earth rotation, Topography, Wind, Pressure.

  8. The oxygen and carbon dioxide balance in the earth's atmosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Johnson, F. S.

    1975-01-01

    The oxygen-carbon dioxide cycle is described in detail, and steps which are sensitive to perturbation or instability are identified. About half of the carbon dioxide consumption each year in photosynthesis occurs in the oceans. Phytoplankton, which are the primary producers, have been shown to assimilate insecticides and herbicides. The impact of such materials on phytoplankton photosynthesis, both direct and as the indirect result of detrimental effects higher up in the food chain, cannot be assessed. Net oxygen production is very small in comparison with the total production and occurs almost exclusively in a few ocean areas with anoxic bottom conditions and in peat-forming marshes which are sensitive to anthropogenic disturbances. The carbon dioxide content of the atmosphere is increasing at a relatively rapid rate as the result of fossil fuel combustion. Increases in photosynthesis as the result of the hothouse effect may in turn reduce the carbon dioxide content of the atmosphere, leading to global cooling.

  9. Estimate of the 42Ar content in the Earth's atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barabash, A. S.; Kornoukhov, V. N.; Jants, V. E.

    1997-02-01

    42Ar is a potential source of background in large volume argon-based detectors. The production of the 42Ar isotope both by cosmic rays and by neutrons produced by testing of nuclear weapons is discussed. We demonstrate that main channel of the 42Ar production is from atmospheric testing of nuclear bombs from 1945 to 1962 and the 42Ar content must be less than 1.3 × 10 -23 parts of 42Ar per part of natAr.

  10. Cosmic rays intensity and atmosphere humidity at near earth surface

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oskomov, V. V.; Sedov, A. N.; Saduyev, N. O.; Kalikulov, O. A.; Naurzbayeva, A. Zh; Alimgazinova, N. Sh; Kenzhina, I. E.

    2016-08-01

    Experimental studies of estimation the mutual influence of humidity and flux of cosmic rays in first approximation were carried out. Normalized cross-correlation function of time series of neutron monitors count rate and level of relative atmosphere humidity near cosmic rays registration point is studied. Corrected and uncorrected on pressure minute and hour data of 6NM64 neutron monitor count rate were used for the study. Neutron monitor is located in Al-Farabi Kazakh National University, at an altitude of 850 m above sea level. Also, data from NM64 neutron monitor of Tien Shan mountain research station of Institute of Ionosphere, located at an altitude of 3340 m above sea level were used. Uncorrected on pressure cosmic rays intensity better reflects the changes in relative atmosphere humidity. Average and sometimes strong relationship is often observed by time changes of atmosphere humidity near the point of cosmic rays detection and their intensity: the value of normalized cross-correlation function of respective signals, even in case of their long duration and a large number of data (eg, for minute changes at intervals of up to several months) covers 0.5 - 0.75 range, sometimes falling to ∼⃒ 0.4.

  11. The early Earth atmosphere and early life catalysts.

    PubMed

    Ramírez Jiménez, Sandra Ignacia

    2014-01-01

    Homochirality is a property of living systems on Earth. The time, the place, and the way in which it appeared are uncertain. In a prebiotic scenario two situations are of interest: either an initial small bias for handedness of some biomolecules arouse and progressed with life, or an initial slight excess led to the actual complete dominance of the known chiral molecules. A definitive answer can probably never be given, neither from the fields of physics and chemistry nor biology. Some arguments can be advanced to understand if homochirality is necessary for the initiation of a prebiotic homochiral polymer chemistry, if this homochirality is suggesting a unique origin of life, or if a chiral template such as a mineral surface is always required to result in an enantiomeric excess. A general description of the early Earth scenario will be presented in this chapter, followed by a general description of some clays, and their role as substrates to allow the concentration and amplification of some of the building blocks of life.

  12. Three-dimensional random earth atmospheres for Monte Carlo trajectory analyses

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Campbell, J. W.

    1977-01-01

    A set of four computer tapes containing random three dimensional Earth atmospheres is available for Monte Carlo trajectory analyses. The tapes contain sufficient atmospheric tables to allow replications of any trajectory below an altitude of 99 km. The atmospheres were provided by an empirical model designed to generate random atmospheres whose distributions match those in a data base of sounding rocket measurements. A readily implementable means of linking the tapes to any existing trajectory simulation computer program is described involving the addition of three subroutines which are listed in an appendix.

  13. Gamma rays from grazing incidence cosmic rays in the earth's atmosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ulmer, Andrew

    1994-01-01

    Interactions of grazing incidence, ultra high-energy cosmic rays with the earth's atmosphere may provide a new method of studying energetic cosmic rays with gamma-ray satellites. It is found that these cosmic ray interactions may produce gamma-rays on millisecond timescales which may be detectable by satellites. An extremely low gamma-ray background for transient gamma-ray events and a large area of interaction, the earth's surface, make the scheme plausible. The effective cross section of detection of interactions for cosmic rays above 10(exp 20) eV is found to be more than two orders of magnitude higher than Earth-based detection techniques. This method may eventually offer an efficient way of probing this region of the cosmic-ray energy spectrum where events are scarce. In this paper, a conceptual model is presented for the production of short bursts of gamma-rays based on these grazing incidence encounters with the Earth's atmosphere.

  14. Abiotic ozone and oxygen in atmospheres similar to prebiotic Earth

    SciTech Connect

    Domagal-Goldman, Shawn D.; Segura, Antígona; Claire, Mark W.; Robinson, Tyler D.; Meadows, Victoria S.

    2014-09-10

    The search for life on planets outside our solar system will use spectroscopic identification of atmospheric biosignatures. The most robust remotely detectable potential biosignature is considered to be the detection of oxygen (O{sub 2}) or ozone (O{sub 3}) simultaneous to methane (CH{sub 4}) at levels indicating fluxes from the planetary surface in excess of those that could be produced abiotically. Here we use an altitude-dependent photochemical model with the enhanced lower boundary conditions necessary to carefully explore abiotic O{sub 2} and O{sub 3} production on lifeless planets with a wide variety of volcanic gas fluxes and stellar energy distributions. On some of these worlds, we predict limited O{sub 2} and O{sub 3} buildup, caused by fast chemical production of these gases. This results in detectable abiotic O{sub 3} and CH{sub 4} features in the UV-visible, but no detectable abiotic O{sub 2} features. Thus, simultaneous detection of O{sub 3} and CH{sub 4} by a UV-visible mission is not a strong biosignature without proper contextual information. Discrimination between biological and abiotic sources of O{sub 2} and O{sub 3} is possible through analysis of the stellar and atmospheric context—particularly redox state and O atom inventory—of the planet in question. Specifically, understanding the spectral characteristics of the star and obtaining a broad wavelength range for planetary spectra should allow more robust identification of false positives for life. This highlights the importance of wide spectral coverage for future exoplanet characterization missions. Specifically, discrimination between true and false positives may require spectral observations that extend into infrared wavelengths and provide contextual information on the planet's atmospheric chemistry.

  15. The chemistry of meteoric metals in the Earth's upper atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Plane, John M. C.

    The presence of thin layers of free metal atoms at around 90 km in the upper atmosphere has been known for about fifty years. Layers of the alkali metals Na, K and Li, as well as Ca and Fe, have been observed. This discovery has posed two important questions. First, what is the source of the metals: interplanetary or terrestrial? Secondly, what is the nature of the chemistry that causes reactive metals such as sodium to exist in their atomic form in the atmosphere? The first part of this review covers the techniques that have been developed to observe the metal layers, including ground-, rocket- and space-based photometers, and in particular metal lidars. The many curious phenomena that have been observed are then described, such as the small scale-heights of the layers, the quite different seasonal variations of the three alkali metals, the large depletions of Ca and Fe relative to Na, and the dramatic appearance of sporadic Na layers. The second part of the review describes the recent advances that have been made in laboratory kinetic studies of metal reactions of atmospheric interest. A number of specialized techniques for making low-temperature measurements are compared, and a compilation of recommended rate coefficients is given. The history of modelling of the chemistry of metals in the mesosphere is then reviewed, and the evidence that their major source is meteoric ablation is presented. A current model of sodium is then described and evaluated with sensitivity tests. This section ends by discussing the possible impact of these meteoric metals on the chlorine-catalysed removal of ozone in the stratosphere. The final part of the review summarizes the active current state of the field and identifies some of its future directions.

  16. Ozone formation due to interaction of meteoroids with Earth's atmosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bibarsov, R. SH.

    1987-01-01

    In a previous paper, it was shown that concentration of atomic oxygen in overdense meteor trails may exceed that of the normal atmosphere by a factor of several hundred times. This may lead to the formation of meteoric ozone. Therefore, it is imperative to estimate the concentration of ozone in the trails of meteor bodies with different masses. It seems that meteoric ozone must be taken into account when studying the balance of ionization in the meteor trails formed by particles with masses more than .01 g. The predicted levels of atomic oxygen and ozone seem sufficient to greatly influence the rate of meteoric plasma deionization.

  17. The Formation of Haze During the Rise of Oxygen in the Atmosphere of the Early Earth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Horst, S. M.; Jellinek, M.; Pierrehumbert, R.; Tolbert, M. A.

    2013-12-01

    Atmospheric aerosols play an important role in determining the radiation budget of an atmosphere and can also provide a wealth of organic material to the surface. Photochemical hazes are abundant in reducing atmospheres, such as the N2/CH4 atmosphere of Titan, but are unlikely to form in oxidizing atmospheres, such as the N2/O2 atmosphere of present day Earth. However, information about haze formation in mildly oxidizing atmospheres is lacking. Understanding haze formation in mildly oxidizing atmospheres is necessary for models that wish to investigate the atmosphere of the Early Earth as O2 first appeared and then increased in abundance. Previous studies of the atmosphere of the Early Earth have focused on haze formation in N2/CO2/CH4 atmospheres. In this work, we experimentally investigate the effect of the addition of O2 on the formation and composition of aerosols. Using a High-Resolution Time-of-Flight Aerosol Mass Spectrometer (HR-ToF-AMS) (see e.g. [1]) we have obtained in situ composition measurements of aerosol particles produced in N2/CO2/CH4/O2 gas mixtures subjected to FUV radiation (deuterium lamp, 115-400 nm) for a range of initial CO2/CH4/O2 mixing ratios. In particular, we studied the effect of O2 ranging from 2 ppm to 2%. The particles were also investigated using a Scanning Mobility Particle Sizer (SMPS), which measures particle size, number density and mass loading. A comparison of the composition of the aerosols will be presented. The effect of variation of O2 mixing ratio on aerosol production, size, and composition will also be discussed. [1] Trainer, M.G., et al. (2012) Astrobiology, 12, 315-326.

  18. Clouds in the atmosphere of the super-Earth exoplanet GJ 1214b.

    PubMed

    Kreidberg, Laura; Bean, Jacob L; Désert, Jean-Michel; Benneke, Björn; Deming, Drake; Stevenson, Kevin B; Seager, Sara; Berta-Thompson, Zachory; Seifahrt, Andreas; Homeier, Derek

    2014-01-01

    Recent surveys have revealed that planets intermediate in size between Earth and Neptune ('super-Earths') are among the most common planets in the Galaxy. Atmospheric studies are the next step towards developing a comprehensive understanding of this new class of object. Much effort has been focused on using transmission spectroscopy to characterize the atmosphere of the super-Earth archetype GJ 1214b (refs 7 - 17), but previous observations did not have sufficient precision to distinguish between two interpretations for the atmosphere. The planet's atmosphere could be dominated by relatively heavy molecules, such as water (for example, a 100 per cent water vapour composition), or it could contain high-altitude clouds that obscure its lower layers. Here we report a measurement of the transmission spectrum of GJ 1214b at near-infrared wavelengths that definitively resolves this ambiguity. The data, obtained with the Hubble Space Telescope, are sufficiently precise to detect absorption features from a high mean-molecular-mass atmosphere. The observed spectrum, however, is featureless. We rule out cloud-free atmospheric models with compositions dominated by water, methane, carbon monoxide, nitrogen or carbon dioxide at greater than 5σ confidence. The planet's atmosphere must contain clouds to be consistent with the data. PMID:24380954

  19. Clouds in the atmosphere of the super-Earth exoplanet GJ 1214b.

    PubMed

    Kreidberg, Laura; Bean, Jacob L; Désert, Jean-Michel; Benneke, Björn; Deming, Drake; Stevenson, Kevin B; Seager, Sara; Berta-Thompson, Zachory; Seifahrt, Andreas; Homeier, Derek

    2014-01-01

    Recent surveys have revealed that planets intermediate in size between Earth and Neptune ('super-Earths') are among the most common planets in the Galaxy. Atmospheric studies are the next step towards developing a comprehensive understanding of this new class of object. Much effort has been focused on using transmission spectroscopy to characterize the atmosphere of the super-Earth archetype GJ 1214b (refs 7 - 17), but previous observations did not have sufficient precision to distinguish between two interpretations for the atmosphere. The planet's atmosphere could be dominated by relatively heavy molecules, such as water (for example, a 100 per cent water vapour composition), or it could contain high-altitude clouds that obscure its lower layers. Here we report a measurement of the transmission spectrum of GJ 1214b at near-infrared wavelengths that definitively resolves this ambiguity. The data, obtained with the Hubble Space Telescope, are sufficiently precise to detect absorption features from a high mean-molecular-mass atmosphere. The observed spectrum, however, is featureless. We rule out cloud-free atmospheric models with compositions dominated by water, methane, carbon monoxide, nitrogen or carbon dioxide at greater than 5σ confidence. The planet's atmosphere must contain clouds to be consistent with the data.

  20. Oxygen and ozone in the early earth's atmosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Canuto, V. M.; Levine, J. S.; Augustsson, T. R.; Imhoff, C. L.

    1983-01-01

    The precise amount of O2 and O3 in the earth's prebiological paleoatmosphere has been a topic of considerable discussion in the past. Since the photolysis of H2O and CO2, the prebiological mechanisms to produce O2, depends on the ultraviolet flux from the Sun, a reliable quantification of the problem requires detailed knowledge of such flux. Using the most recent astronomical observation of young stars from the International Ultraviolet Explorer, as well as a detailed photochemical model of the paleoatmosphere, it is found that the amount of O2 in the prebiological paleoatmosphere may have been as much as a million times greater than previously estimated. Some of the implications of this new value are discussed.

  1. A statistical look at the retrieval of exoplanetary atmospheres of super Earths and giant planets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rocchetto, Marco; Waldmann, Ingo Peter; Tinetti, Giovanna; Yurchenko, Sergey; Tennyson, Jonathan

    2015-08-01

    Over the past decades transit spectroscopy has become one of the pioneering methods to characterise exoplanetary atmospheres. With the increasing number of observations, and the advent of new ground and spaced based instruments, it is now crucial to find the most optimal and objective methodologies to interpret these data, and understand the information content they convey. This is particularly true for smaller and fainter super Earth type planets.In this conference we will present a new take on the spectral retrieval of transiting planets, with particular focus on super Earth atmospheres. TauREx (Waldmann et al. 2015a,b.) is a new line-by-line radiative transfer atmospheric retrieval framework for transmission and emission spectroscopy of exoplanetary atmospheres, optimised for hot Jupiters and super Earths. The code has been built from scratch with the ideas of scalability, flexibility and automation. This allows to run retrievals with minimum user input that can be scaled to large cluster computing. Priors on the number and types of molecules considered are automatically determined using a custom built pattern recognition algorithm able to identify the most likely absorbers/emitters in the exoplanetary spectra, minimising the human bias in selecting the major atmospheric constituents.Using these tools, we investigate the impact of signal to noise, spectral resolution and wavelength coverage on the retrievability of individual model parameters from transit spectra of super Earths, and put our models to test (Rocchetto et al. 2015). Characterisation of the atmospheres of super Earths through transit spectroscopy is paramount, as it can provide an indirect - and so far unique - way to probe the nature of these planets. For the first time we analyse in a systematic way large grids of spectra generated for different observing scenarios. We perform thousands of retrievals aimed to fully map the degeneracies and understand the statistics of current exoplanetary

  2. Investigating The Ionization of The Earth's Atmosphere At Large Energetic Particle Events

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wolff, E.; Burrows, J.; Kallenrode, M.-B.; von König, M.; Künzi, K. F.; Quack, M.

    To investigate the influence of energetic particle events on the terrestrial atmosphere (e.g. due to ionization and/or hadronic interaction) a number of aspects are under consideration, such as the species of the precipitating particles, their energies, fluences as well as a repetition rate of events. In preparation of a refined model of precipitating charged particle interactions with the atmosphere, we calculate the ionization in the earth's atmosphere for well- known recent events (e.g. the Bastille Day event on July 14, 2000) of high particle fluences by using computer simulations of the earth's atmosphere and in situ measured particle intensities. The changes in atmospheric chemistry derieved from this ionization are described in the accompanying contribution of M. von König et al. (Modelling the influence of large energetic particle events on the chemical composition of the middle and upper atmosphere). Although very effective for atmospheric chemistry, these events are too rare and too short-lived to contribute significantly to the atmospheric NOx budget on a long-time basis. However, McCracken et al. (2001) suggests from nitrate depositions in ice- cores that solar particle events have occured more frequently and with a higher in- tensity in historical times, and thus may have led to a greater impact than the events discussed above. Therefore, we evaluate the influence of large historical energetic particle events, such as NOx and Ozone behaviour due to atmospheric ionization at Carrington's white light flare in 1859.

  3. Effects of atmospheric breakup on crater field formation. [on earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Passey, Q. R.; Melosh, H. J.

    1980-01-01

    This paper investigates the physics of meteoroid breakup in the atmosphere and its implications for the observed features of strewn fields. There are several effects which cause dispersion of the meteoroid fragments: gravity, differential lift of the fragments, bow shock interaction just after breakup, centripetal separation by a rotating meteroid, and possibly a dynamical transverse separation resulting from the crushing deceleration in the atmosphere. Of these, it is shown that gravity alone can produce the common pattern in which the largest crater occurs at the downrange end of the scatter ellipse. The average lift-to-drag ratio of the tumbling fragments must be less than about 0.001, otherwise small fragments would produce small craters downrange of the main crater, and this is not generally observed. The cross-range dispersion is probably due to the combined effects of bow shock interaction, crushing deceleration, and possibly spinning of the meteoroid. A number of terrestrial strewn fields are discussed in the light of these ideas, which are formulated quantitatively for a range of meteoroid velocities, entry angles, and crushing strengths. It is found that when the crater size exceeds about 1 km, the separation between the fragments upon landing is a fraction of their own diameter, so that the crater formed by such a fragmented meteoroid is almost indistinguishable from that formed by a solid body of the same total mass and velocity.

  4. High-energy cosmic ray muons in the Earth's atmosphere

    SciTech Connect

    Kochanov, A. A.; Sinegovskaya, T. S.; Sinegovsky, S. I.

    2013-03-15

    We present the calculations of the atmospheric muon fluxes at energies 10-10{sup 7} GeV based on a numerical-analytical method for solving the hadron-nucleus cascade equations. It allows the non-power-law behavior of the primary cosmic ray (PCR) spectrum, the violation of Feynman scaling, and the growth of the total inelastic cross sections for hadron-nucleus collisions with increasing energy to be taken into account. The calculations have been performed for a wide class of hadron-nucleus interaction models using directly the PCR measurements made in the ATIC-2 and GAMMA experiments and the parameterizations of the primary spectrum based on a set of experiments. We study the dependence of atmospheric muon flux characteristics on the hadronic interaction model and the influence of uncertainties in the PCR spectrum and composition on the muon flux at sea level. Comparison of the calculated muon energy spectra at sea level with the data from a large number of experiments shows that the cross sections for hadron-nucleus interactions introduce the greatest uncertainty in the energy region that does not include the knee in the primary spectrum.

  5. High-energy cosmic ray muons in the Earth's atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kochanov, A. A.; Sinegovskaya, T. S.; Sinegovsky, S. I.

    2013-03-01

    We present the calculations of the atmospheric muon fluxes at energies 10-107 GeV based on a numerical-analytical method for solving the hadron-nucleus cascade equations. It allows the non-power-law behavior of the primary cosmic ray (PCR) spectrum, the violation of Feynman scaling, and the growth of the total inelastic cross sections for hadron-nucleus collisions with increasing energy to be taken into account. The calculations have been performed for a wide class of hadron-nucleus interaction models using directly the PCR measurements made in the ATIC-2 and GAMMA experiments and the parameterizations of the primary spectrum based on a set of experiments. We study the dependence of atmospheric muon flux characteristics on the hadronic interaction model and the influence of uncertainties in the PCR spectrum and composition on the muon flux at sea level. Comparison of the calculated muon energy spectra at sea level with the data from a large number of experiments shows that the cross sections for hadron-nucleus interactions introduce the greatest uncertainty in the energy region that does not include the knee in the primary spectrum.

  6. Emergence of global scaling behaviour in the coupled Earth-atmosphere interaction

    PubMed Central

    Fallah, Bijan; Saberi, Abbas Ali; Sodoudi, Sahar

    2016-01-01

    Scale invariance property in the global geometry of Earth may lead to a coupled interactive behaviour between various components of the climate system. One of the most interesting correlations exists between spatial statistics of the global topography and the temperature on Earth. Here we show that the power-law behaviour observed in the Earth topography via different approaches, resembles a scaling law in the global spatial distribution of independent atmospheric parameters. We report on observation of scaling behaviour of such variables characterized by distinct universal exponents. More specifically, we find that the spatial power-law behaviour in the fluctuations of the near surface temperature over the lands on Earth, shares the same universal exponent as of the global Earth topography, indicative of the global persistent role of the static geometry of Earth to control the steady state of a dynamical atmospheric field. Such a universal feature can pave the way to the theoretical understanding of the chaotic nature of the atmosphere coupled to the Earth’s global topography. PMID:27666675

  7. Emergence of global scaling behaviour in the coupled Earth-atmosphere interaction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fallah, Bijan; Saberi, Abbas Ali; Sodoudi, Sahar

    2016-09-01

    Scale invariance property in the global geometry of Earth may lead to a coupled interactive behaviour between various components of the climate system. One of the most interesting correlations exists between spatial statistics of the global topography and the temperature on Earth. Here we show that the power-law behaviour observed in the Earth topography via different approaches, resembles a scaling law in the global spatial distribution of independent atmospheric parameters. We report on observation of scaling behaviour of such variables characterized by distinct universal exponents. More specifically, we find that the spatial power-law behaviour in the fluctuations of the near surface temperature over the lands on Earth, shares the same universal exponent as of the global Earth topography, indicative of the global persistent role of the static geometry of Earth to control the steady state of a dynamical atmospheric field. Such a universal feature can pave the way to the theoretical understanding of the chaotic nature of the atmosphere coupled to the Earth’s global topography.

  8. CMIP5 Simulations with the Community Earth System Model - Whole Atmosphere Community Climate Model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mills, M. J.; Marsh, D. R.; CalvoFernandez, N.; Kinnison, D. E.; Lamarque, J.

    2011-12-01

    We have used the Whole Atmosphere Community Climate Model (WACCM) to simulate the Earth's climate from pre-industrial conditions to the end of the 21st Century in several experiments following the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 5 (CMIP5) protocols. We present preliminary analysis of these coupled experiments, highlighting the effects of chemistry and physics above the troposphere on climate. WACCM was developed to understand the couplings between atmospheric layers, the role of chemical and physical processes in defining these couplings, and the interaction between the Earth's atmosphere and the Sun. The current version of WACCM spans the range of altitude from the Earth's surface to the lower thermosphere (~140 km) and is based on version 1 of the Community Earth System Model (CESM-1). WACCM has been used to predict the evolution of ozone and other radiatively active species in the middle and upper atmosphere; to study effects of the stratosphere on tropospheric climate, including the response to increased greenhouse gases; and for independent investigations. We compare climate trends in CMIP5 experiments from WACCM to those in the low-top version of CESM. We examine the coupling between the upper and lower atmosphere, including the quasi-biennial oscillation, sudden stratospheric warmings, the solar cycle, and surface climate.

  9. Nitrogen speciation in upper mantle fluids and the origin of Earth's nitrogen-rich atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mikhail, Sami; Sverjensky, Dimitri A.

    2014-11-01

    Volatile elements stored in the mantles of terrestrial planets escape through volcanic degassing, and thereby influence planetary atmospheric evolution and habitability. Compared with the atmospheres of Venus and Mars, Earth's atmosphere is nitrogen-rich relative to primordial noble gas concentrations. The compatibility of volatile elements in mantle minerals versus melts and fluids controls how readily these elements are degassed. However, the speciation of nitrogen in mantle fluids is not well constrained. Here we present thermodynamic calculations that establish the speciation of nitrogen in aqueous fluids under upper mantle conditions. We find that, under the relatively oxidized conditions of Earth's mantle wedges at convergent plate margins, nitrogen is expected to exist predominantly as N2 in fluids and, therefore, be degassed easily. In contrast, under more reducing conditions elsewhere in the Earth's upper mantle and in the mantles of Venus and Mars, nitrogen is expected predominantly in the form of ammonium (NH4+) in aqueous fluids. Ammonium is moderately compatible in upper mantle minerals and unconducive to nitrogen degassing. We conclude that Earth's oxidized mantle wedge conditions--a result of subduction and hence plate tectonics--favour the development of a nitrogen-enriched atmosphere, relative to the primordial noble gases, whereas the atmospheres of Venus and Mars have less nitrogen because they lack plate tectonics.

  10. Atmospheric excitation of the earth's annual wobble - 1980-1988

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chao, B. Fong; Au, Andrew Y.

    1991-01-01

    Global meteorological analyses from the European Center for Medium Range Weather Forecasts are employed to compute the atmospheric excitation psi of the polar motion for the 9-year period of 1980-1988. Both the matter component psi(matter) and the motion component psi (motion) are computed, the former with and without the oceanic inverted barometer (IB) effect. It is found that psi(motion) contributes significantly to the total excitation psi overall and nonnegligibly to the annual signal in psi, or the annual wobble excitation in particular. The results for the annual wobble excitation, in terms of the prograde component psi(t) and the retrogade component phsi(-) for January 1, are within the (rather large) range of previous estimates. The IB effect has a small impact on psi(+), whereas its impact on psi(-) is considerable.

  11. Climatic effects due to halogenated compounds in the earth's atmosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wang, W.-C.; Pinto, J. P.; Yung, Y. L.

    1980-01-01

    Using a one-dimensional radiative-convective model, a sensitivity study is performed of the effect of ozone depletion in the stratosphere on the surface temperature. There could be a cooling of the surface temperature by approximately 0.2 K due to chlorofluoromethane-induced ozone depletion at steady state (assuming 1973 release rates). This cooling reduces significantly the greenhouse effect due to the presence of chlorofluoromethanes. Carbon tetrafluoride has a strong nu sub 3 band at 7.8 microns, and the atmospheric greenhouse effect is shown to be 0.07 and 0.12 K/ppbv with and without taking into account overlap with CH4 and N2O bands. At concentrations higher than 1 ppbv, absorption by the nu sub 3 band starts to saturate and the greenhouse effect becomes less efficient.

  12. Heating and thermal transformation of micrometeoroids entering the earth's atmosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Love, S. G.; Brownlee, D. E.

    1991-01-01

    The present numerical solutions for the atmospheric entry of 10 micron-1 mm diameter micrometeoroids gave attention to ablative mass loss and cooling, together with gravitational and curvature effects, for entry velocities in the 11.2-72 km/sec range. Maximum temperature and mass-loss rates are found to generally occur at altitudes between 85 and 90 km, during about 1 sec of peak heating; the survival of all particles in the 70 micron-1 mm size range is noted to be limited to those with minimal entry velocity. Virtually all of the 'cosmic spherules' of more than 70-mm diameter, as well as giant unmelted micrometeorites, are implied by the present results to be of asteroidal origin.

  13. Comparing the Atmospheres of Mercury and the Earth's Moon

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Morgan, Thomas H.; Killen, Rosemary M.; Hurley, Dana M.

    2012-01-01

    The exospheres of Mercury and the Earth's Moon are fundamentally similar, but the differences that do exist between them can help us to develop a better understanding of the processes at work on the two bodies that produce and remove volatiles. The major differences are derived from (1) the different compositions of the two surfaces, (2) the different particle and field em'ironments above the surface of each body (particularly the presence of intrinsic magnetic field of Mercury), and (3) the larger flux of interplanetary dust incident at the orbit of Mercury. The first difference, surface composition, is the most intractable problem, but the most challenging part of that problem, the composition of the Hermean regolith, may be at least partially addressed as the MESSENGER mission completes work over the next year. Much progress has been made with respect to exploring the second difference above--spacecraft such as Helios, Ulysses, WIND, and ACE have measured the solar wind and its composition both in Earth orbit and at distances encompassing the orbit of Mercury. While our knowledge of the solar wind is incomplete, again it is far more detailed than a simple 1/R(sup 2) law would predict. Another problem is that of the flux of charged particles to the surfaces. While Mercury's magnetosphere is the subject of current study with MESSENGER, the influx of charged particles on the Moon has gone beyond a cos (psi) picture, where psi is the solar zenith angle. We know that the influx of ions at the Moon is affected by magnetic anomalies, by craters, and by surface charging. The third external difference is the differing flux of interplanetary dust incident on the two surfaces. In this talk we will consider: (1) the species that one can compare now for these two exospheres (Na, K, and He); (2) the species that you might be able to compare with future measurements (Ca and Mg); arid (3) how intensive ground-based observations of the easiest lunar species to observe from the

  14. Numerical calculations of cosmic ray cascade in the Earth's atmosphere using different particle interaction models

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nesterenok, A. V.; Naidenov, V. O.

    2015-12-01

    The interaction of primary cosmic rays with the Earth's atmosphere is investigated using the simulation toolkit GEANT4. Two reference lists of physical processes - QGSP_BIC_HP and FTFP_BERT_HP - are used in the simulations of cosmic ray cascade in the atmosphere. The cosmic ray neutron fluxes are calculated for mean level of solar activity, high geomagnetic latitudes and sea level. The calculated fluxes are compared with the published results of other analogous simulations and with experimental data.

  15. Combined 2-micron Dial and Doppler Lidar: Application to the Atmosphere of Earth or Mars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Singh, Upendra N.; Koch, Grady J.; Ismail, Syed; Kavaya, Michael; Yu, Jirong; Wood, Sidney A.; Emmitt, G. David

    2006-01-01

    A concept is explored for combining the Doppler and DIAL techniques into a single, multifunctional instrument. Wind, CO2 concentration, and aerosol density can all be measured. Technology to build this instrument is described, including the demonstration of a prototype lidar. Applications are described for use in the Earth science. The atmosphere of Mars can also be studied, and results from a recently-developed simulation model of performance in the Martian atmosphere are presented.

  16. The mechanism of temperature and pressure changes in the Earth's atmosphere during solar flares

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Reshetov, V. D.

    1979-01-01

    The effect of solar flares on the weather on Earth is examined. It is concluded that the processes which arise in the atmosphere are so intricate that a single calculation of solar activity is insufficient for long-range forecasting. However, combined consideration of processes dependent upon the dynamic instability of the atmosphere and the effect of solar activity will contribute to the improvement of long-range forecasts.

  17. Atmospheric Ar and Ne returned from mantle depths to the Earth's surface by forearc recycling.

    PubMed

    Baldwin, Suzanne L; Das, J P

    2015-11-17

    In subduction zones, sediments, hydrothermally altered lithosphere, fluids, and atmospheric gases are transported into the mantle, where ultrahigh-pressure (UHP) metamorphism takes place. However, the extent to which atmospheric noble gases are trapped in minerals crystallized during UHP metamorphism is unknown. We measured Ar and Ne trapped in phengite and omphacite from the youngest known UHP terrane on Earth to determine the composition of Ar and Ne returned from mantle depths to the surface by forearc recycling. An (40)Ar/(39)Ar age [7.93 ± 0.10 My (1σ)] for phengite is interpreted as the timing of crystallization at mantle depths and indicates that (40)Ar/(39)Ar phengite ages reliably record the timing of UHP metamorphism. Both phengite and omphacite yielded atmospheric (38)Ar/(36)Ar and (20)Ne/(22)Ne. Our study provides the first documentation, to our knowledge, of entrapment of atmospheric Ar and Ne in phengite and omphacite. Results indicate that a subduction barrier for atmospheric-derived noble gases does not exist at mantle depths associated with UHP metamorphism. We show that the crystallization age together with the isotopic composition of nonradiogenic noble gases trapped in minerals formed during subsolidus crystallization at mantle depths can be used to unambiguously assess forearc recycling of atmospheric noble gases. The flux of atmospheric noble gas entering the deep Earth through subduction and returning to the surface cannot be fully realized until the abundances of atmospheric noble gases trapped in exhumed UHP rocks are known. PMID:26542683

  18. Atmospheric Ar and Ne returned from mantle depths to the Earth's surface by forearc recycling.

    PubMed

    Baldwin, Suzanne L; Das, J P

    2015-11-17

    In subduction zones, sediments, hydrothermally altered lithosphere, fluids, and atmospheric gases are transported into the mantle, where ultrahigh-pressure (UHP) metamorphism takes place. However, the extent to which atmospheric noble gases are trapped in minerals crystallized during UHP metamorphism is unknown. We measured Ar and Ne trapped in phengite and omphacite from the youngest known UHP terrane on Earth to determine the composition of Ar and Ne returned from mantle depths to the surface by forearc recycling. An (40)Ar/(39)Ar age [7.93 ± 0.10 My (1σ)] for phengite is interpreted as the timing of crystallization at mantle depths and indicates that (40)Ar/(39)Ar phengite ages reliably record the timing of UHP metamorphism. Both phengite and omphacite yielded atmospheric (38)Ar/(36)Ar and (20)Ne/(22)Ne. Our study provides the first documentation, to our knowledge, of entrapment of atmospheric Ar and Ne in phengite and omphacite. Results indicate that a subduction barrier for atmospheric-derived noble gases does not exist at mantle depths associated with UHP metamorphism. We show that the crystallization age together with the isotopic composition of nonradiogenic noble gases trapped in minerals formed during subsolidus crystallization at mantle depths can be used to unambiguously assess forearc recycling of atmospheric noble gases. The flux of atmospheric noble gas entering the deep Earth through subduction and returning to the surface cannot be fully realized until the abundances of atmospheric noble gases trapped in exhumed UHP rocks are known.

  19. Monitoring the Earth's Atmosphere with the Global IMS Infrasound Network

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brachet, Nicolas; Brown, David; Mialle, Pierrick; Le Bras, Ronan; Coyne, John; Given, Jeffrey

    2010-05-01

    The Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO) is tasked with monitoring compliance with the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT) which bans nuclear weapon explosions underground, in the oceans, and in the atmosphere. The verification regime includes a globally distributed network of seismic, hydroacoustic, infrasound and radionuclide stations which collect and transmit data to the International Data Centre (IDC) in Vienna, Austria shortly after the data are recorded at each station. The infrasound network defined in the Protocol of the CTBT comprises 60 infrasound array stations. Each array is built according to the same technical specifications, it is typically composed of 4 to 9 sensors, with 1 to 3 km aperture geometry. At the end of 2000 only one infrasound station was transmitting data to the IDC. Since then, 41 additional stations have been installed and 70% of the infrasound network is currently certified and contributing data to the IDC. This constitutes the first global infrasound network ever built with such a large and uniform distribution of stations. Infrasound data at the IDC are processed at the station level using the Progressive Multi-Channel Correlation (PMCC) method for the detection and measurement of infrasound signals. The algorithm calculates the signal correlation between sensors at an infrasound array. If the signal is sufficiently correlated and consistent over an extended period of time and frequency range a detection is created. Groups of detections are then categorized according to their propagation and waveform features, and a phase name is assigned for infrasound, seismic or noise detections. The categorization complements the PMCC algorithm to avoid overwhelming the IDC automatic association algorithm with false alarm infrasound events. Currently, 80 to 90% of the detections are identified as noise by the system. Although the noise detections are not used to build events in the context of CTBT monitoring

  20. Super-Earth Atmospheres: Self-consistent Gas Accretion and Retention

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ginzburg, Sivan; Schlichting, Hilke E.; Sari, Re'em

    2016-07-01

    Some recently discovered short-period Earth- to Neptune-sized exoplanets (super-Earths) have low observed mean densities that can only be explained by voluminous gaseous atmospheres. Here, we study the conditions allowing the accretion and retention of such atmospheres. We self-consistently couple the nebular gas accretion onto rocky cores and the subsequent evolution of gas envelopes following the dispersal of the protoplanetary disk. Specifically, we address mass-loss due to both photo-evaporation and cooling of the planet. We find that planets shed their outer layers (dozens of percent in mass) following the disk's dispersal (even without photo-evaporation), and their atmospheres shrink in a few Myr to a thickness comparable to the radius of the underlying rocky core. At this stage, atmospheres containing less particles than the core (equivalently, lighter than a few percent of the planet's mass) can be blown away by heat coming from the cooling core, while heavier atmospheres cool and contract on a timescale of Gyr at most. By relating the mass-loss timescale to the accretion time, we analytically identify a Goldilocks region in the mass-temperature plane in which low-density super-Earths can be found: planets have to be massive and cold enough to accrete and retain their atmospheres, but not too massive or cold, such that they do not enter runaway accretion and become gas giants (Jupiters). We compare our results to the observed super-Earth population and find that low-density planets are indeed concentrated in the theoretically allowed region. Our analytical and intuitive model can be used to investigate possible super-Earth formation scenarios.

  1. Current status and challenges in optical turbulence simulations in various layers of the Earth's atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    He, Ping; Nunalee, Christopher G.; Basu, Sukanta; Vorontsov, Mikhail A.; Fiorino, Steven T.

    2014-10-01

    In this study, we present a brief review on the existing approaches for optical turbulence estimation in various layers of the Earth's atmosphere. The advantages and disadvantages of these approaches are also discussed. An alternative approach, based on mesoscale modeling with parameterized turbulence, is proposed and tested for the simulation of refractive index structure parameter (C2n ) in the atmospheric boundary layer. The impacts of a few atmospheric flow phenomena (e.g., low-level jets, island wake vortices, gravity waves) on optical turbulence are discussed. Consideration of diverse geographic settings (e.g., flat terrain, coastal region, ocean islands) makes this study distinct.

  2. Energy deposition in the earth's atmosphere due to impact of solar activity-generated disturbances

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wu, S. T.; Kan, L. C.; Tandberg-Hanssen, E.; Dryer, M.

    1979-01-01

    Energy deposition in and dynamic responses of the terrestrial atmosphere to solar flare-generated shocks and other physical processes - such as particle precipitation and local heating - are investigated self-consistently in the context of hydrodynamics, the problem being treated as an initial boundary-value problem. It is extremely difficult to construct a general model for the line solar activity-magnetosphere-atmosphere; however, a limited model for this link is possible. The paper describes such a model, and presents some results on energy deposition into the earth's atmosphere due to solar activity-generated disturbances. Results from the present calculations are presented and discussed.

  3. Runaway and moist greenhouse atmospheres and the evolution of Earth and Venus.

    PubMed

    Kasting, J F

    1988-01-01

    A one-dimensional climate model is used to study the response of an Earth-like atmosphere to large increases in solar flux. For fully saturated, cloud-free conditions, the critical solar flux at which a runaway greenhouse occurs, that is, the oceans evaporate entirely, is found to be 1.4 times the present flux at Earth's orbit (S0). This value is close to the flux expected at Venus' orbit early in solar system history. Is is nearly independent of the amount of CO2 present in the atmosphere, but is sensitive to the H2O absorption coefficient in the 8- to 12-micrometers window region. Clouds should tend to depress the surface temperature on a warm, moist planet; thus, Venus may originally have had oceans if its initial water endowment was close to that of Earth. It lost them early in its history, however, because of rapid photodissociation of water vapor followed by escape of hydrogen to space. The critical solar flux above which water is rapidly lost could be as low as 1.1S0. The surface temperature of a runaway greenhouse atmosphere containing a full ocean's worth of water would have been in excess of 1500 degrees K--above the solidus for silicate rocks. The presence of such a steam atmosphere during accretion may have significantly influenced the early thermal evolution of both Earth and Venus.

  4. A Special Assignment from NASA: Understanding Earth's Atmosphere through the Integration of Science and Mathematics

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fox, Justine E.; Glen, Nicole J.

    2012-01-01

    Have your students ever wondered what NASA scientists do? Have they asked you what their science and mathematics lessons have to do with the real world? This unit about Earth's atmosphere can help to answer both of those questions. The unit described here showcases "content specific integration" of science and mathematics in that the lessons meet…

  5. Effects of atmospheric aerosols on scattering reflected visible light from earth resource features

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Noll, K. E.; Tschantz, B. A.; Davis, W. T.

    1972-01-01

    The vertical variations in atmospheric light attenuation under ambient conditions were identified, and a method through which aerial photographs of earth features might be corrected to yield quantitative information about the actual features was provided. A theoretical equation was developed based on the Bouguer-Lambert extinction law and basic photographic theory.

  6. Comparing Unique Title Coverage of Web of Science and Scopus in Earth and Atmospheric Sciences

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Barnett, Philip; Lascar, Claudia

    2012-01-01

    The current journal titles in earth and atmospheric sciences, that are unique to each of two databases, Web of Science and Scopus, were identified using different methods. Comparing by subject category shows that Scopus has hundreds of unique titles, and Web of Science just 16. The titles unique to each database have low SCImago Journal Rank…

  7. High-resolution numerical simulation of Venus atmosphere by AFES (Atmospheric general circulation model For the Earth Simulator)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sugimoto, Norihiko; AFES project team

    2016-10-01

    We have developed an atmospheric general circulation model (AGCM) for Venus on the basis of AFES (AGCM For the Earth Simulator) and performed a high-resolution simulation (e.g., Sugimoto et al., 2014a). The highest resolution is T639L120; 1920 times 960 horizontal grids (grid intervals are about 20 km) with 120 vertical layers (layer intervals are about 1 km). In the model, the atmosphere is dry and forced by the solar heating with the diurnal and semi-diurnal components. The infrared radiative process is simplified by adopting Newtonian cooling approximation. The temperature is relaxed to a prescribed horizontally uniform temperature distribution, in which a layer with almost neutral static stability observed in the Venus atmosphere presents. A fast zonal wind in a solid-body rotation is given as the initial state.Starting from this idealized superrotation, the model atmosphere reaches a quasi-equilibrium state within 1 Earth year and this state is stably maintained for more than 10 Earth years. The zonal-mean zonal flow with weak midlatitude jets has almost constant velocity of 120 m/s in latitudes between 45°S and 45°N at the cloud top levels, which agrees very well with observations. In the cloud layer, baroclinic waves develop continuously at midlatitudes and generate Rossby-type waves at the cloud top (Sugimoto et al., 2014b). At the polar region, warm polar vortex surrounded by a cold latitude band (cold collar) is well reproduced (Ando et al., 2016). As for horizontal kinetic energy spectra, divergent component is broadly (k > 10) larger than rotational component compared with that on Earth (Kashimura et al., in preparation). We will show recent results of the high-resolution run, e.g., small-scale gravity waves attributed to large-scale thermal tides. Sugimoto, N. et al. (2014a), Baroclinic modes in the Venus atmosphere simulated by GCM, Journal of Geophysical Research: Planets, Vol. 119, p1950-1968.Sugimoto, N. et al. (2014b), Waves in a Venus general

  8. The composition of the primitive atmosphere and the synthesis of organic compounds on the early Earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bada, J. L.; Miller, S. L.

    1985-01-01

    The generally accepted theory for the origin of life on the Earth requires that a large variety of organic compounds be present to form the first living organisms and to provide the energy sources for primitive life either directly or through various fermentation reactions. This can provide a strong constraint on discussions of the formation of the Earth and on the composition of the primitive atmosphere. In order for substantial amounts of organic compounds to have been present on the prebiological Earth, certain conditions must have existed. There is a large body of literature on the prebiotic synthesis of organic compounds in various postulated atmospheres. In this mixture of abiotically synthesized organic compounds, the amino acids are of special interest since they are utilized by modern organisms to synthesize structural materials and a large array of catalytic peptides.

  9. Earth history. Low mid-Proterozoic atmospheric oxygen levels and the delayed rise of animals.

    PubMed

    Planavsky, Noah J; Reinhard, Christopher T; Wang, Xiangli; Thomson, Danielle; McGoldrick, Peter; Rainbird, Robert H; Johnson, Thomas; Fischer, Woodward W; Lyons, Timothy W

    2014-10-31

    The oxygenation of Earth's surface fundamentally altered global biogeochemical cycles and ultimately paved the way for the rise of metazoans at the end of the Proterozoic. However, current estimates for atmospheric oxygen (O2) levels during the billion years leading up to this time vary widely. On the basis of chromium (Cr) isotope data from a suite of Proterozoic sediments from China, Australia, and North America, interpreted in the context of data from similar depositional environments from Phanerozoic time, we find evidence for inhibited oxidation of Cr at Earth's surface in the mid-Proterozoic (1.8 to 0.8 billion years ago). These data suggest that atmospheric O2 levels were at most 0.1% of present atmospheric levels. Direct evidence for such low O2 concentrations in the Proterozoic helps explain the late emergence and diversification of metazoans.

  10. The oxidizing capacity of the earth's atmosphere - Probable past and future changes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Thompson, Anne M.

    1992-01-01

    A number of critical atmospheric chemical problems depend on the earth's oxidizing capacity, which is essentially the global burden of oxidants in the lower atmosphere. There is limited direct evidence for changes in the earth's oxidizing capacity since recent preindustrial times when, because of industrial and poulation growth, increasing amounts of O3 precursor trace gases (carbon monoxide, nitrogen oxides, and hydrocarbons) have been released into the atmosphere. The concentrations of O3 and possibly H2O2 have increased over large regions. Models predict that tropospheric O3 will increase about 0.3-1.0 percent per year over the next 50 years with both positive and negative trends possible for OH and H2O2. Models and the observational network for oxidants are improving, but validation of global models is still at an early stage.

  11. Synthesis of nitrous oxide by lightning in the early anoxic Earth's atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Navarro, K. F.; Navarro-Gonzalez, R.; McKay, C. P.

    2013-12-01

    Carbon dioxide (CO2) was the main atmospheric component of the early Earth's atmosphere and exerted a key role in climate by maintaining a hydrosphere during a primitive faint Sun [1]; however, CO2 was eventually removed from the atmosphere by rock weathering and sequestered in the Earth's crust and mantle [1]. Nitric oxide (NO) was fixed by lightning discharges at a rate of 1×1016 molecules J-1 in CO2 (50-80%) rich atmospheres [2]. As the levels of atmospheric CO2 dropped to 20%, the production rate of NO by lightning rapidly decreased to 2×1014 molecules J-1 and then slowly diminished to 1×1014 molecules J-1 at CO2 levels of about 2.5% [2]. In order to maintain the existence of liquid water in the early Earth, it is required to warm up the planet with other greenhouse gases such as methane (CH4) [3]. Here we report an experimental study of the effects of lightning discharges on the nitrogen fixation rate during the evolution of the Earth's early atmosphere from 10 to 0.8 percent of carbon dioxide with methane concentrations from 0 to 1,000 ppm in molecular nitrogen. Lightning was simulated in the laboratory by a plasma generated with a pulsed Nd-YAG laser [2]. Our results show that the production of NO by lightning is independent of the presence of methane but drops from 3×1014 molecules J-1 in 10% CO2 to 5×1013 molecules J-1 in 1% CO2. Surprisingly, nitrous oxide (N2O) is also produced at a rate of 4×1013 molecules J-1 independent of the levels of CH4 and CO2. N2O is produced by lightning in the contemporaneous oxygenated Earth's atmosphere at a comparable rate of (0.4-1.5)×1013 molecules J-1 [4, 5], but was not detected in nitrogen-carbon dioxide mixtures in the absence of oxygen [6]. The only previously reported abiotic synthesis of N2O was by corona discharges in rich CO2 atmospheres (20-80%) with a production rate of 8×1012 molecules J-1 [6]; however at lower CO2 (<20%) levels, N2O is no longer produced. Therefore, lightning in the early Earth

  12. Contributions of high-altitude winds and atmospheric moment of inertia to the atmospheric angular momentum-earth rotation relationship

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Taylor, H. A., Jr.; Mayr, H. G.; Kramer, L.

    1985-01-01

    For many years it has been recognized that recurrent modulations occur in the time series of the earth's rotation rate or, alternatively, the change in the length of the day (Delta-LOD). Studies relating Delta-LOD to global patterns of zonal winds have confirmed that the variability of atmospheric angular momentum (M) is of sufficient magnitude to account for a large portion of the gross periodicities observed in the earth rotation. The present investigation is concerned with the importance of the contributions of the moment of inertia and high-altitude winds to the angular momentum budget. On the basis of an analysis of the various factors, it is found that within the available data, contributions of high-altitude winds and atmospheric moment of inertia reach levels detectable in the atmospheric angular momentum budget. Nevertheless, for the period December 1978 to December 1979 these contributions are not sufficient to resolve the apparent short-term discrepancies which are evident between Delta-LOD and M.

  13. Photochemical consequences of enhanced CO2 levels in earth's early atmosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kasting, J. F.

    1985-01-01

    Greatly enhanced atmospheric CO2 concentrations are the most likely mechanism for offsetting the effects of reduced solar luminosity early in the earth's history. CO2 levels of 80 to 600 times the present value could have maintained a mean surface temperature of 0 C to 15 C, given a 25 percent decrease in solar output. Such high CO2 levels are at least qualitatively consistent with the present understanding of the carbonate-silicate geochemical cycle. The presence of large amounts of CO2 has important implications for the composition of the earth's prebiotic atmosphere. The hydrogen budget of a high-CO2 primitive atmosphere would have been strongly influenced by rainout of H2O2 and H2CO. The reaction of H2O2 with dissolved ferrous iron in the early oceans could have been a major sink for atmospheric oxygen. The requirement that this loss of oxygen be balanced by a corresponding loss of hydrogen (by escape to space and rainout of H2CO) implies that the atmospheric H2 mixing ratio was greater than 2 x 10 to the -5th and the ground level O2 mixing ratio was below 10 to the -12th, even if other surface sources of H2 were small. These results are only weakly dependent on changes in solar UV flux, rainout rates, and vertical mixing rates in the primitive atmosphere.

  14. Constraints on Earth degassing history from the argon isotope composition of Devonian atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stuart, F. M.; Mark, D.

    2012-04-01

    The primordial and radiogenic isotopes of the noble gases combine to make them a powerful tool for determining the time and tempo of the outgassing of the Earth's interior. The outgassing history of the Earth is largely constrained from measurements of the isotopic composition of He, Ne, Ar and Xe in samples of modern mantle, crust and atmosphere. There have been few unequivocal measurement of the isotopic composition of noble gases in ancient atmosphere. We have re-visited whether ancient Ar is trapped in the ~400 Ma Rhynie chert [1]. We have analysed samples of pristine Rhynie chert using the ARGUS multi-collector mass spectrometer calibrated against the new determination of atmospheric Ar isotope ratios [2]. 40Ar/36Ar ratios are low, with many lower than the modern air value (298.8). Importantly these are accompanied by atmospheric 38Ar/36Ar ratios indicating that the low 40Ar/36Ar are not due to mass fractionation. We conclude that the Rhynie chert has captured Devonian atmosphere-derived Ar. The data indicate that the Devonian atmosphere 40Ar/36Ar was at least 3 % lower than the modern air value. Thus the Earth's atmosphere has accumulated at least 5 ± 0.2 x 1016 moles of 40Ar in the last 400 million years, at an average rate of 1.24 ± 0.06 x 108 mol 40Ar/year. This overlaps the rate determined from ice cores for the last 800,000 years [3] and implies that there has been no resolvable temporal change in Earth outgassing rate since mid-Palaeozoic times. The new data require the Earth outgassed early, and suggests that pristine samples of Archaean and Proterozoic chert may prove useful as palaeo-atmosphere tracers. [1] G. Turner, J. Geol. Soc. London 146, 147-154 (1989) [2] D. Mark, F.M. Stuart, M. de Podesta, Geochim. Cosmochim. Acta 75, 7494-7501 [3] M. Bender et al., Proc. Nat. Acad. Sci. 105, 8232-8237 (2008)

  15. Global Reference Atmospheric Models, Including Thermospheres, for Mars, Venus and Earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Justh, Hilary L.; Justus, C. G.; Keller, Vernon W.

    2006-01-01

    This document is the viewgraph slides of the presentation. Marshall Space Flight Center's Natural Environments Branch has developed Global Reference Atmospheric Models (GRAMs) for Mars, Venus, Earth, and other solar system destinations. Mars-GRAM has been widely used for engineering applications including systems design, performance analysis, and operations planning for aerobraking, entry descent and landing, and aerocapture. Preliminary results are presented, comparing Mars-GRAM with measurements from Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO) during its aerobraking in Mars thermosphere. Venus-GRAM is based on the Committee on Space Research (COSPAR) Venus International Reference Atmosphere (VIRA), and is suitable for similar engineering applications in the thermosphere or other altitude regions of the atmosphere of Venus. Until recently, the thermosphere in Earth-GRAM has been represented by the Marshall Engineering Thermosphere (MET) model. Earth-GRAM has recently been revised. In addition to including an updated version of MET, it now includes an option to use the Naval Research Laboratory Mass Spectrometer Incoherent Scatter Radar Extended Model (NRLMSISE-00) as an alternate thermospheric model. Some characteristics and results from Venus-GRAM and Earth-GRAM thermospheres are also presented.

  16. Spectral Characteristic of Tholin Produced from Possible Early Earth Atmospheres and its Role in Antigreenhouse Effect on Early Earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Khare, B. N.; Imanaka, H.; Wilhite, P.; McKay, C.; Bakes, E.; Cruikshank, D. P.; Arakawa, E. T.

    2003-01-01

    We have produced organic material simulating a methane photochemical haze in a CO2- rich atmosphere of the early Earth by irradiating gas mixtures in an inductively coupled cold plasma chamber with pressure approx. 0.25 mbar at 100 W total power. The flow rate was 24 cm3 min. We added progressively higher levels of CH, by combining gas mixtures of N2/CH4 (9/1) and N2/CO2 (9/1) to change the ratio of CH4/CO2. Tholin was accumulated for 5 hours in each experiment; the onset of tholin formation is in the range CH4/CO2 = 0.5 to 1. As the mixing ratio of CH, is increased, the production rate of the brownish tholin film increases. IR spectra showed the C-H and N-H bands similar to that of Titan tholin and closely resemble Titan tholin made at 0.13 mbar pressure. A decrease in the CH bonds on decreasing CH4/CO2 is noted. Ether bands (-(2-O-C) were tentatively detected, but no detectable carbonyl (C=O) band was found. The absorption in the UV region for the early Earth tholin is found to be substantially greater than the Titan tholin. Quantitative values of the optical constants of early Earth tholin are currently being measured.

  17. Initial results of radio occultation observations of Earth`s atmosphere using the Global Positioning System

    SciTech Connect

    Kursinski, E.R.; Hajj, G.A.; Bertiger, W.I.; Leroy, S.S.

    1996-02-23

    Recent radio occultation measurements using Global Positioning System satellite transmitters and an orbiting receiver have provided a globally distributed set of high-resolution atmospheric profiles, suggesting that the technique may may a significant contribution to global change and weather prediction programs. Biases in occultation temperatures relative to radiosonde and model data are about 1 kelvin or less in the tropics and are generally less than 0.5 kelvin at higher latitudes. Data quality is sufficient to quantify significant model errors in remote regions. Temperature profiles also reveal either an equatorial Rossby-gravity or an inertio-gravity wave. Such waves provide a fundamental source of momentum for the stratospheric circulation. 25 refs., 5 figs.

  18. L2 Earth Atmosphere Observatory: Formation Guidance, Metrology and Control Synthesis

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Acikmese, Ahmet Behcet; Mettler, Edward; Breckenridge, William G.; Macenka, Steven A.; Tubbs, Eldred F.

    2004-01-01

    The Earth Observatory Formation at L2, a Lagrange libration point, is a unique large aperture (25 m diameter) space telescope concept that will improve the knowledge and understanding of dynamic, chemical and radiative mechanisms that cause changes in the atmosphere, and can lead to the development of models and techniques to predict short and long-term climate changes. The results of this concept definition study show that the telescope concept is feasible, and can have technology readiness in the 2020 time frame. Further advanced development in several subsystems is needed, such as higher efficiency Xenon ion thrusters with throttling, and optical quality large membrane mirror with active shape control. It presents an analysis and solution of guidance, sensing, control, and propulsion problems for a formation of two spacecraft on the Sun-Earth line in the neighborhood of the Sun-Earth L2 point, that observes Earth s atmosphere during continuous solar occultation by the Earth. A system architecture is described for the observatory, and its components that include unique mission specific metrology. The formation must follow a powered trajectory with strictly limited fuel use to observe solar occultation. A configuration of ion thrusters and reaction wheels for translation and attitude control is designed along with algorithms for orbit following and formation control. Simulation results of the orbital and formation dynamics are presented that verify performance of the control systems.

  19. Surface-atmosphere interactions on Titan compared with those on the pre-biotic Earth.

    PubMed

    Lunine, J I; McKay, C P

    1995-03-01

    The surface and atmosphere of Titan constitute a system which is potentially as complex as that of the Earth, with the possibility of precipitation, surface erosion due to liquids, chemistry in large surface or subsurface hydrocarbon reservoirs, surface expressions of internal activity, and occasional major impacts leading to crustal melting. While none of the above have been observed as yet, the composition, density and thermal properties of Titan's atmosphere make it uniquely suited in the outer solar system as a place where such processes may occur. The one attribute of the Earth not expected on Titan is biological activity, which has had a profound effect on the evolution of the Earth's surface-atmosphere system. The earliest environment of Titan could have been warm enough for liquid ammonia-water solutions to exist on or near surface; pre-biotic organic processes may have taken place in such an environment. After a few hundred million years surface ammonia-water would have disappeared. Therefore, study of Titan through the Cassini-Huygens mission, planned for launch in 1997, primarily affords the opportunity to understand planet-wide surface-atmosphere interactions in the presence of fluids but in the absence of life. More speculative is the possibility that endogenic and exogenic heating continue to provide short-lived environments on Titan wherein pre-biotic organic processes in the presence of water happen. PMID:11539243

  20. The formation of cubic ice under conditions relevant to Earth's atmosphere.

    PubMed

    Murray, Benjamin J; Knopf, Daniel A; Bertram, Allan K

    2005-03-10

    An important mechanism for ice cloud formation in the Earth's atmosphere is homogeneous nucleation of ice in aqueous droplets, and this process is generally assumed to produce hexagonal ice. However, there are some reports that the metastable crystalline phase of ice, cubic ice, may form in the Earth's atmosphere. Here we present laboratory experiments demonstrating that cubic ice forms when micrometre-sized droplets of pure water and aqueous solutions freeze homogeneously at cooling rates approaching those found in the atmosphere. We find that the formation of cubic ice is dominant when droplets freeze at temperatures below 190 K, which is in the temperature range relevant for polar stratospheric clouds and clouds in the tropical tropopause region. These results, together with heat transfer calculations, suggest that cubic ice will form in the Earth's atmosphere. If there were a significant fraction of cubic ice in some cold clouds this could increase their water vapour pressure, and modify their microphysics and ice particle size distributions. Under specific conditions this may lead to enhanced dehydration of the tropopause region. PMID:15758996

  1. The formation of cubic ice under conditions relevant to Earth's atmosphere.

    PubMed

    Murray, Benjamin J; Knopf, Daniel A; Bertram, Allan K

    2005-03-10

    An important mechanism for ice cloud formation in the Earth's atmosphere is homogeneous nucleation of ice in aqueous droplets, and this process is generally assumed to produce hexagonal ice. However, there are some reports that the metastable crystalline phase of ice, cubic ice, may form in the Earth's atmosphere. Here we present laboratory experiments demonstrating that cubic ice forms when micrometre-sized droplets of pure water and aqueous solutions freeze homogeneously at cooling rates approaching those found in the atmosphere. We find that the formation of cubic ice is dominant when droplets freeze at temperatures below 190 K, which is in the temperature range relevant for polar stratospheric clouds and clouds in the tropical tropopause region. These results, together with heat transfer calculations, suggest that cubic ice will form in the Earth's atmosphere. If there were a significant fraction of cubic ice in some cold clouds this could increase their water vapour pressure, and modify their microphysics and ice particle size distributions. Under specific conditions this may lead to enhanced dehydration of the tropopause region.

  2. Surface-atmosphere interactions on Titan compared with those on the pre-biotic Earth.

    PubMed

    Lunine, J I; McKay, C P

    1995-03-01

    The surface and atmosphere of Titan constitute a system which is potentially as complex as that of the Earth, with the possibility of precipitation, surface erosion due to liquids, chemistry in large surface or subsurface hydrocarbon reservoirs, surface expressions of internal activity, and occasional major impacts leading to crustal melting. While none of the above have been observed as yet, the composition, density and thermal properties of Titan's atmosphere make it uniquely suited in the outer solar system as a place where such processes may occur. The one attribute of the Earth not expected on Titan is biological activity, which has had a profound effect on the evolution of the Earth's surface-atmosphere system. The earliest environment of Titan could have been warm enough for liquid ammonia-water solutions to exist on or near surface; pre-biotic organic processes may have taken place in such an environment. After a few hundred million years surface ammonia-water would have disappeared. Therefore, study of Titan through the Cassini-Huygens mission, planned for launch in 1997, primarily affords the opportunity to understand planet-wide surface-atmosphere interactions in the presence of fluids but in the absence of life. More speculative is the possibility that endogenic and exogenic heating continue to provide short-lived environments on Titan wherein pre-biotic organic processes in the presence of water happen.

  3. Pyrolisis of phosphorylated molecules and survivability limits during the atmospheric passage in earth-like planets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marcano, Vicente; Benitez, Pedro; Campins, Javier; Matheus, Paula; Cedeño, Cesyen; Falcon, Nelson; Palacios-Prü, Ernesto

    2004-06-01

    There is evidence that space energy sources could give place to the appearance of phosphorylated nucleosides outside of Earth. These compounds may have been delivered mainly by interplanetary dust particles due to the lower temperatures experienced during atmospheric deceleration and impacts to the terrestrial surface. In this report, we communicate the results of pyrolytic studies to simulate atmospheric survivability of adenosine-5'-diphosphates (ADP) (and adenosine-5'-monophosphate, adenosine and adenine as degradation products) at temperatures <500°C and at various time intervals. Our results revealed that phosphorylated and non-phosphorylated nucleosides transported by IDPs having sizes of 10 -6- 10 -5 m could resist temperatures up to 500°C generated during atmospheric entry. However, atmospheric passage should not exceed a time >150 s due to the thermal lability of these molecules. Because of the high half-life showed by ADP in the presence of meteoritic powder, it is thought that extraterrestrial delivery of very complex biomolecules is more suitable under such protected conditions. These data indicate that the formation of a Fe 2+- and/or Ca 2+-complex could increase the stability of the molecules in the presence of meteoritic matter. Therefore, if the synthesis of nucleosides, nucleotides or oligonucleotides could take place in icy bodies, then micron-sized dust could have contributed significantly to the availability of phosphorylated nucleosides in the early Earth or in extrasolar early Earth-like planets, and thereby could have allowed the arising of an early biological activity.

  4. Investigating the Early Atmospheres of Earth and Mars through Rivers, Raindrops, and Lava Flows

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Som, Sanjoy M.

    2010-11-01

    The discovery of a habitable Earth-like planet beyond our solar-system will be remembered as one of the major breakthroughs of 21st century science, and of the same magnitude as Copernicus' heliocentric model dating from the mid 16th century. The real astrobiological breakthrough will be the added results from atmospheric remote sensing of such planets to determine habitability. Atmospheres, in both concentration and composition are suggestive of processes occurring at the planetary surface and upper crust. Unfortunately, only the modern Earth's atmosphere is known to be habitable. I investigate the density and pressure of our planet's early atmosphere before the rise of oxygen 2.5 billion years ago, because our planet was very much alive microbially. Such knowledge gives us another example of a habitable atmosphere. I also investigates the atmosphere of early Mars, as geomorphic signatures on its surface are suggestive of a past where liquid water may have present in a warmer climate, conditions suitable for the emergence of life, compared with today's 6 mbar CO2-dominated atmosphere. Using tools of fluvial geomorphology, I find that the largest river-valleys on Mars do not record a signature of a sustained hydrological cycle, in which precipitation onto a drainage basin induces many cycles of water flow, substrate incision, water ponding, and return to the atmosphere via evaporation. Rather, I conclude that while episodes of flow did occur in perhaps warmer environments, those periods were short-lived and overprinted onto a dominantly cold and dry planet. For Earth, I develop a new method of investigating atmospheric density and pressure using the size of raindrop imprints, and find that raindrop imprints preserved in the 2.7 billion year old Ventersdorp Supergroup of South Africa are consistent with precipitation falling in an atmosphere of near-surface density < 2 kg/m3 and probably > 0.1 kg/m3, compared to a modern value of 1.2 kg/m3, further suggesting a

  5. Earth-Atmospheric Coupling During Strong Earthquakes by Analyzing MODIS Data

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ouzounov, Dimitar; Williams, Robin G.; Freund, Friedemann

    2001-01-01

    Interactions between the Earth and the atmosphere during major earthquakes (M greater than 5) are the subject of this investigation. Recently a mechanism has been proposed predicting the build-up of positive ground potentials prior to strong earthquake activity. Connected phenomena include: transient conductivity of rocks, injection of currents, possibly also electromagnetic emission and light emission from high points at the surface of the Earth. To understand this process we analyze vertical atmospheric profiles, land surface and brightness (temperature) data, using the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) onboard NASA's Terra satellite launched in December 1999. MODIS covers the entire Earth every 1-2 days in 36 wavelength bands (20 visible and 16 infrared) at different spatial resolutions (250 m, 500 m, and 1 km). Using MODIS data we look for correlations between the atmospheric dynamics and solid Earth processes for the January 2001 strong earthquakes in San Salvador and India. As part of the build-up of positive grounds potential, an IR luminescence is predicted to occur in the 8-12 micrometer band. We use the MODIS data to differentiate between true "thermal" signals and IR luminescence. Indeed, on the basis of a temporal and spatial distribution analysis, a thermal anomaly pattern is found that appears to be related to the seismic activity. Aerosol content and atmospheric instability parameters also change when ground charges build up causing ion emission and leading to a thin aerosol layer over land. We analyze the aerosol content, atmospheric pressure, moisture profile and lifted index. Anomalous trends have been identified in few days prior to the main shocks. The significance of this observation should be explored further using other data sets.

  6. LASA (Lidar Atmospheric Sounder and Altimeter) Earth Observing System. Volume 2D: Instrument Panel Report

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1987-01-01

    The Earth Observing System (Eos) will provide an ideal forum in which the stronly synergistic characteristics of the lidar systems can be used in concert with the characteristics of a number of other sensors to better understand the Earth as a system. Progress in the development of more efficient and long-lasting laser systems will insure their availability in the Eos time frame. The necessary remote-sensing techniques are being developed to convert the Lidar Atmospheric Sounder and Altimeter (LASA) observations into the proper scientific parameters. Each of these activities reinforces the promise that LASA and GLRS will be a reality in the Eos era.

  7. Retrievals of the Atmospheres of Earth-like Planets Around F, G, K, and M stars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vasquez, Mayte; Schreier, Franz

    More than one thousand exoplanets have been discovered in the past two decades, with some dozen of them in the host stars' habitable zone and with size and mass similar to Earth. Furthermore, spectra of exoplanets become available with reasonable quality (resolution and noise) that trigger the question of remote sensing of the planet's atmosphere. Solving these inverse problems will ultimately allow to characterize the planet and determine its habitability. Using a high resolution infrared radiative transfer code with a line-by-line molecular absorption model we calculate synthetic spectra of exoplanets orbiting F-, G-, K-, and M-stars. Key parameters describing the atmosphere (i.e., molecular abundances, temperature, pressure) will be identified and the Jacobians (i.e. partial derivatives of the spectra) will be evaluated to investigate the feasibility to retrieve the atmospheric state. The objective of this sensitivity study is to identify the optimal state vector representing the atmosphere in the inverse problem.

  8. STRATOSPHERIC TEMPERATURES AND WATER LOSS FROM MOIST GREENHOUSE ATMOSPHERES OF EARTH-LIKE PLANETS

    SciTech Connect

    Kasting, James F.; Kopparapu, Ravi K.; Chen, Howard E-mail: hwchen@bu.edu

    2015-11-01

    A radiative-convective climate model is used to calculate stratospheric temperatures and water vapor concentrations for ozone-free atmospheres warmer than that of modern Earth. Cold, dry stratospheres are predicted at low surface temperatures, in agreement with recent 3D calculations. However, at surface temperatures above 350 K, the stratosphere warms and water vapor becomes a major upper atmospheric constituent, allowing water to be lost by photodissociation and hydrogen escape. Hence, a moist greenhouse explanation for loss of water from Venus, or some exoplanet receiving a comparable amount of stellar radiation, remains a viable hypothesis. Temperatures in the upper parts of such atmospheres are well below those estimated for a gray atmosphere, and this factor should be taken into account when performing inverse climate calculations to determine habitable zone boundaries using 1D models.

  9. Study of the dynamics of meteoroids through the Earth's atmosphere and retrieval of meteorites

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guadalupe Cordero Tercero, Maria; Farah-Simon, Alejandro; Velázquez-Villegas, Fernando

    2016-07-01

    When a comet , asteroid or meteoroid impact with a planet several things can happen depending on the mass, velocity and composition of the impactor, if the planet or moon has an atmosphere or not, and the angle of impact. On bodies without an atmosphere like Mercury or the Moon, every object that strikes their surfaces produces impact craters with sizes ranging from centimeters to hundreds and even thousands of kilometers across. On bodies with an atmosphere, this encounter can produce impact craters, meteorites, meteors and fragmentation. Each and every one of these phenomena is interesting because they provide information about the surfaces and the geological evolution of solar system bodies. Meteors (shooting stars) are luminous wakes on the sky due to the interaction between the meteoroid and the Earth's atmosphere. A meteoroid is asteroidal or cometary material ranging in size from 2 mm to a few tens of meters. The smallest tend to evaporate at heights between 80 and 120 km. Objects of less than 2 mm are called micrometeorites. If the meteor brightness exceeds the brightness of Venus, the phenomenon is called a bolide or fireball. If a meteoroid, or a fragment of it, survives atmospheric ablation and it can be recovered on the ground, that piece is called a meteorite. Most meteoroids 2 meters long fragment suddenly into the atmosphere, it produces a shock wave that can affect humans and their environment like the Chelyabinsk event occurred on February 15, 2013 an two less energetic events in Mexico in 2010 and 2011. To understand the whole phenomenon, we proposed a video camera network for observing meteors. The objectives of this network are to: a) contribute to the study of the fragmentation of meteoroids in the Earth's atmosphere, b) determine values of important physical parameters; c ) study seismic waves produced by atmospheric shock waves, d) study the dynamics of meteoroids and f ) recover and study meteorites. During this meeting, the academic

  10. Loss of Water in Early Earth's Atmosphere and Its Effects on Habitability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Airapetian, Vladimir; Glocer, Alex; Khazanov, George

    2015-08-01

    The short wavelength emission from the Sun has a profound impact on the Earth’s atmosphere. High energy photons ionize the atmosphere and produce photoelectrons. This process provides a major contribution to the acceleration of atmospheric ions due to the vertical separation of ions and electrons, and the formation of the resulting ambipolar electric field. Observations and theory suggest that even a relatively small fraction of super-thermal electrons (photoelectrons) produced due to photoionization can drive the ”polar wind” that is responsible for the transport of ionospheric constituents to the Earth’s magnetosphere.The young Sun was a magnetically active star generating powerful radiative output from its chromosphere, transition region and corona which was a few hundred times greater than that observed today. What effects would the photoionization processes due to the X-ray-UV solar flux from early Sun have on the loss of water from the early Earth?We use the Fokker-Plank code coupled with 1D hydrodynamic code to model the effect of intensive short-wavelength (X-rays to UV band) emission from the young Sun (3.8 and 4.4 Ga) on Earth's atmosphere. Our simulations include the photoionization processes of the Earth’s atmosphere forming a population of photoelectrons (E<600 eV), the kinetic effects of their propagation associated and their contribution in ionosphere - magnetosphere energy redistribution. Our coupled simulations show that the ambipolar electric field can drag atmospheric ions of oxygen and hydrogen to the magnetosphere and produce significant mass loss that can affect the loss of water from the early Earth in the first half a billion years. This process became less efficient in the next 0.2-0.3 Ga that could have provided a window of opportunity for origin of life.

  11. Prebiotic chemistry and atmospheric warming of early Earth by an active young Sun

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Airapetian, V. S.; Glocer, A.; Gronoff, G.; Hébrard, E.; Danchi, W.

    2016-06-01

    Nitrogen is a critical ingredient of complex biological molecules. Molecular nitrogen, however, which was outgassed into the Earth’s early atmosphere, is relatively chemically inert and nitrogen fixation into more chemically reactive compounds requires high temperatures. Possible mechanisms of nitrogen fixation include lightning, atmospheric shock heating by meteorites, and solar ultraviolet radiation. Here we show that nitrogen fixation in the early terrestrial atmosphere can be explained by frequent and powerful coronal mass ejection events from the young Sun--so-called superflares. Using magnetohydrodynamic simulations constrained by Kepler Space Telescope observations, we find that successive superflare ejections produce shocks that accelerate energetic particles, which would have compressed the early Earth’s magnetosphere. The resulting extended polar cap openings provide pathways for energetic particles to penetrate into the atmosphere and, according to our atmospheric chemistry simulations, initiate reactions converting molecular nitrogen, carbon dioxide and methane to the potent greenhouse gas nitrous oxide as well as hydrogen cyanide, an essential compound for life. Furthermore, the destruction of N2, CO2 and CH4 suggests that these greenhouse gases cannot explain the stability of liquid water on the early Earth. Instead, we propose that the efficient formation of nitrous oxide could explain a warm early Earth.

  12. The Solubility of Rock in Steam Atmospheres of the Early Earth and Hot Rocky Exoplanets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fegley, Bruce

    2016-07-01

    Extensive experimental studies show all major rock-forming elements (e.g., Si, Mg, Fe, Ca, Al, Na, K) dissolve in steam to a greater or lesser extent. We use these results to compute chemical equilibrium abundances of rocky element - bearing gases in steam atmospheres equilibrated with silicate magma oceans. Rocky elements partition into steam atmospheres as volatile hydroxide gases (e.g., Si(OH)4, Mg(OH)2, Fe(OH)2, Ni(OH)2, Al(OH)3, Ca(OH)2, NaOH, KOH) and via reaction with HF and HCl as volatile halide gases (e.g., NaCl, KCl, CaFOH, CaClOH, FAl(OH)2) in much larger amounts than expected from their vapor pressures over volatile-free solid or molten rock at high temperatures expected for steam atmospheres on the early Earth and hot rocky exoplanets. We quantitatively compute the extent of fractional vaporization by defining gas/magma distribution coefficients and show Earth's sub-solar Si/Mg ratio may be due to loss of a primordial steam atmosphere. We conclude hot rocky exoplanets that are undergoing or have undergone escape of steam-bearing atmospheres may experience fractional vaporization and loss of Si, Mg, Fe, Ni, Al, Ca, Na, and K. This loss can modify their bulk composition, density, heat balance, and interior structure. This work was supported by NSF Astronomy Program Grant AST-1412175.

  13. Interaction between common organic acids and trace nucleation species in the Earth's atmosphere.

    PubMed

    Xu, Yisheng; Nadykto, Alexey B; Yu, Fangqun; Herb, J; Wang, Wei

    2010-01-14

    Atmospheric aerosols formed via nucleation in the Earth's atmosphere play an important role in the aerosol radiative forcing associated directly with global climate changes and public health. Although it is well-known that atmospheric aerosol particles contain organic species, the chemical nature of and physicochemical processes behind atmospheric nucleation involving organic species remain unclear. In the present work, the interaction of common organic acids with molecular weights of 122, 116, 134, 88, 136, and 150 (benzoic, maleic, malic, pyruvic, phenylacetic, and tartaric acids) with nucleation precursors and charged trace species has been investigated. We found a moderate strong effect of the organic species on the stability of neutral and charged ionic species. In most cases, the free energies of the mixed H(2)SO(4)-organic acid dimer formation are within 1-1.5 kcal mol(-1) of the (H(2)SO(4))(NH(3)) formation energy. The interaction of the organic acids with trace ionic species is quite strong, and the corresponding free energies far exceed those of the (H(3)O(+))(H(2)SO(4)) and (H(3)O(+))(H(2)SO(4))(2) formation. These considerations lead us to conclude that the aforementioned organic acids may possess a substantial capability of stabilizing both neutral and positively charged prenucleation clusters, and thus, they should be studied further with regard to their involvement in the gas-to-particle conversion in the Earth's atmosphere.

  14. Acoustic resonant oscillations between the atmosphere and the solid earth during the 1991 Mt. Pinatubo eruption

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Watada, Shingo; Kanamori, Hiroo

    2010-12-01

    Long-period harmonic Rayleigh waves were observed on seismometers during the 1991 Mt. Pinatubo eruption in the Philippines. The amplitude spectrum of the Rayleigh waves shows two distinct peaks at periods of about 230 and 270 s. In the Earth's atmosphere, long-wavelength standing acoustic waves are bounded in a low-sound-velocity channel between the thermosphere and the ground. The Rayleigh waves and the fundamental and first overtone of atmospheric acoustic waves trapped in the low-sound-velocity channels have approximately the same horizontal wavelength and frequency at periods of 230 and 270 s, respectively, i.e., the atmosphere and the solid earth satisfy the condition for acoustic resonant oscillations. The standing atmospheric long-wavelength acoustic waves set off by the eruption selectively excited seismic spheroidal modes near the resonant period through acoustic resonant coupling and resulted in harmonic Rayleigh waves. In contrast, gravity waves and Lamb waves (atmospheric boundary waves) do not couple to the ground efficiently and are not easily observed as ground disturbance on seismograms during volcanic eruptions.

  15. Composition of the earth's atmosphere by shock-layer radiometry during the PAET entry probe experiment.

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Whiting, E. E.; Arnold, J. O.; Page, W. A.; Reynolds, R. M.

    1973-01-01

    A determination of the composition of the earth's atmosphere obtained from onboard radiometer measurements of the spectra emitted from the bow shock layer of a high-speed entry probe is reported. The N2, O2, CO2, and noble gas concentrations in the earth's atmosphere were determined to good accuracy by this technique. The results demonstrate unequivocally the feasibility of determining the composition of an unknown planetary atmosphere by means of a multichannel radiometer viewing optical emission from the heated atmospheric gases in the region between the bow shock wave and the vehicle surface. The spectral locations in this experiment were preselected to enable the observation of CN violet, N2(+) first negative and atomic oxygen emission at 3870, 3910, and 7775 A, respectively. The atmospheric gases were heated and compressed by the shock wave to a peak temperature of about 6100 K and a corresponding pressure of 0.4 atm. Complete descriptions of the data analysis technique and the onboard radiometer and its calibration are given.

  16. THEORETICAL EMISSION SPECTRA OF ATMOSPHERES OF HOT ROCKY SUPER-EARTHS

    SciTech Connect

    Ito, Yuichi; Ikoma, Masahiro; Kawahara, Hajime; Nagahara, Hiroko; Kawashima, Yui; Nakamoto, Taishi

    2015-03-10

    Motivated by recent detection of transiting high-density super-Earths, we explore the detectability of hot rocky super-Earths orbiting very close to their host stars. In an environment hot enough for their rocky surfaces to be molten, they would have an atmosphere composed of gas species from the magma oceans. In this study, we investigate the radiative properties of the atmosphere that is in gas/melt equilibrium with the underlying magma ocean. Our equilibrium calculations yield Na, K, Fe, Si, SiO, O, and O{sub 2} as the major atmospheric species. We compile the radiative absorption line data of those species available in the literature and calculate their absorption opacities in the wavelength region of 0.1–100 μm. Using them, we integrate the thermal structure of the atmosphere. Then, we find that thermal inversion occurs in the atmosphere because of the UV absorption by SiO. In addition, we calculate the ratio of the planetary to stellar emission fluxes during secondary eclipse, and we find prominent emission features induced by SiO at 4 μm detectable by Spitzer, and those at 10 and 100 μm detectable by near-future space telescopes.

  17. Possible cometary origin of heavy noble gases in the atmospheres of Venus, earth, and Mars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Owen, Tobias; Bar-Nun, Akiva; Kleinfeld, Idit

    1992-01-01

    Due consideration of the probable history of the Martian atmosphere, as well as noble-gas data from the Mars-derived SNC meteorites and from laboratory tests on the trapping of noble gases in ice, are the bases of the presently hypothesized domination of noble gases in the atmospheres of all terrestrial planets by a mixture of internal components and a contribution from comets. If verified, this hypothesis would underscore the significance of impacts for these planets' volatile inventories. The sizes of the hypothesized comets are of the order of 120 km for Venus and only 80 km for that which struck the earth.

  18. Enhanced atmospheric oxygen outflow on Earth and Mars driven by a corotating interaction region

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wei, Y.; Fraenz, M.; Dubinin, E.; Woch, J.; Lühr, H.; Wan, W.; Zong, Q.-G.; Zhang, T. L.; Pu, Z. Y.; Fu, S. Y.; Barabash, S.; Lundin, R.; Dandouras, I.

    2012-03-01

    Solar wind controls nonthermal escape of planetary atmospheric volatiles, regardless of the strength of planetary magnetic fields. For both Earth with a strong dipole and Mars with weak remnant fields, the oxygen ion (O+) outflow has been separately found to be enhanced during corotating interaction region (CIR) passage. Here we compared the enhancements of O+ outflow on Earth and Mars driven by a CIR in January 2008, when Sun, Earth, and Mars were approximately aligned. The CIR propagation was recorded by STEREO, ACE, Cluster, and Mars Express (MEX). During the CIR passage, Cluster observed enhanced flux of upwelling oxygen ions above the Earth's polar region, while MEX detected an increased escape flux of oxygen ions in the Martian magnetosphere. We found that (1) under a solar wind dynamic pressure increase of 2-3 nPa, the rate of increase in Martian O+ outflow flux was 1 order higher than those on Earth; and (2) as a response to the same part of the CIR body, the rate of increase in Martian O+ outflow flux was on the same order as for Earth. The comparison results imply that the dipole effectively prevents coupling of solar wind kinetic energy to planetary ions, and the distance to the Sun is also crucially important for planetary volatile loss in our inner solar system.

  19. Observational and Modeling Studies of Radiative, Chemical, and Dynamical Interactions in the Earth''s Atmosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Salby, Murry

    1998-01-01

    A 3-dimensional model was developed to support mechanistic studies. The model solves the global primitive equations in isentropic coordinates, which directly characterize diabatic processes forcing the Brewer-Dobson circulation of the middle atmosphere. It's numerical formulation is based on Hough harmonics, which partition horizontal motion into its rotational and divergent components. These computational features, along with others, enable 3D integrations to be performed practically on RISC computer architecture, on which they can be iterated to support mechanistic studies. The model conserves potential vorticity quite accurately under adiabatic conditions. Forced by observed tropospheric structure, in which integrations are anchored, the model generates a diabatic circulation that is consistent with satellite observations of tracer behavior and diabatic cooling rates. The model includes a basic but fairly complete treatment of gas-phase photochemistry that represents some 20 chemical species and 50 governing reactions with diurnally-varying shortwave absorption. The model thus provides a reliable framework to study transport and underlying diabatic processes, which can then be compared against chemical and dynamical structure observed and in GCM integrations. Integrations with the Langley GCM were performed to diagnose feedback between simulated convection and the tropical circulation. These were studied in relation to tropospheric properties controlling moisture convergence and environmental conditions supporting deep convection, for comparison against mechanistic integrations of wave CISK that successfully reproduce the Madden-Julian Oscillation (MJO) of the tropical circulation. These comparisons were aimed at identifying and ultimately improving aspects of the convective simulation, with the objective of recovering a successful simulation of the MJO in the Langley GCM, behavior that should be important to budgets of upper-tropospheric water vapor and

  20. Thermal evolution of the earth - Effects of volatile exchange between atmosphere and interior

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mcgovern, Patrick J.; Schubert, Gerald

    1989-01-01

    The thermal history of the earth is investigated using a parameterized model of mantle convection, that includes the effects of volatile exchange between the mantle and the surface reservoir and the softening of the mantle by the dissolved volatiles. The mantle degassing rate is taken to be directly proportional to the rate of seafloor spreading which depends on the mantle heat flow. It is shown that the dependence of the mantle viscosity on the volatile content has important effects on the thermal evolution of planetary interiors and the evolution of planetary atmospheres. Degassing is compensated by an increase in temperature, while regassing is compensated by a decrease in temperature. Reasonable degassing scenarios can account for an early rapid formation of the earth's atmosphere inferred from noble gas abundances.

  1. The young sun and the atmosphere and photochemistry of the early earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Canuto, V. M.; Levine, J. S.; Augustsson, T. R.; Imhoff, C. L.; Giampapa, M. S.

    1983-01-01

    The origin and evolution of the earth's early atmosphere depend crucially on the dissipation time of the primitive solar nebula (SN). Using different theories of turbulence, the dissipation time of an SN of 0.1 solar mass is estimated as 2.5-8.3 Myr. Because accretion times are usually much longer, it is concluded that most planetary accretion must have occurred in a gas-free environment. Using new IUE data, a wavelength-dependent UV flux is constructed for the young sun which is then used to study the photochemistry and concentrations of O, O2, O3, OH, H, HCO and formaldehyde H2CO in the earth's early prebiological atmosphere.

  2. Earth radiation pressure and the determination of density from atmospheric drag.

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Slowey, J. W.

    1973-01-01

    The effect of earth radiation pressure relative to that of atmospheric drag increases with height through the lower thermosphere. While it can be entirely neglected as a correction in the determination of density at lower heights, it becomes significant somewhat below 1000 km and rapidly becomes comparable in magnitude to drag above 1000 km. The effects of earth radiation pressure on the orbit of the balloon satellite 1963 30D were calculated during two series of intervals when the orbit was entirely in sunlight. The first of these was when the perigee was very high so that hydrogen was expected to be the dominant atmospheric constituent. The second was when the perigee was lower and helium was expected to be the dominant constituent. Two sets of calculations were performed, one using a constant mean model and the other using a seasonal-latitudinal model, based on reported Tiros VII data, for the albedo and infrared radiation.

  3. Concept of a space optoelectronic system for environmental monitoring of the near-earth space, atmosphere, and earth surface

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eltsov, Anatoli V.; Karasev, Vladimir I.; Kolotkov, Vjacheslav V.; Kondranin, Timothy V.

    1997-06-01

    The sharp increase of the man-induced pressure on the environment and hence the need to predict and monitor natural anomalies makes global monitoring of the ecosphere of planet Earth an issue of vital importance. The notion of the ecosphere covers three basic shells closely interacting with each other: the near-Earth space, the atmosphere and the Earth surface. In the near-Earth space (covering 100 to 2000 km altitudes) the primary objects of monitoring are: functioning artificial space objects, the fragments of their constructions or space rubbish (which by estimation amounts to 3.5 million pieces including 30,000 to 70,000 objects having dimensions sufficient for heavy damaging or even destroying functioning space objects) and objects of space origin (asteroids, meteorites and comets) whose trajectories come closely enough to the Earth. Maximum concentrations of space rubbish observed on orbits with altitudes of 800, 1000 and 1500 km and inclinations of 60 to 100 deg. are related in the first place to spacecraft launch requirements. Taking into account the number of launches implemented by different countries in the framework of their own space programs the probability of collision of functioning spacecraft with space rubbish may be estimation increase from (1.5 - 3.5)% at present to (15 - 40)% by 2020. Besides, registration of space radiation flow intensity and the solar activity is no less important in this space area. Subject to control in the atmosphere are time and space variations in temperature fields, humidity, tracing gas concentrations, first of all ozone and greenhouse gases, the state of the cloud cover, wind velocity, etc. The range of objects to be under environmental management of Earth surface is just as diverse and essentially should include the state of the surface and the near-surface layer of seas and oceans, internal reservoirs, the cryosphere and the land surface along with vegetation cover, natural resources and human activities. No matter

  4. Transmission and total reflection of subhertz electromagnetic waves at the earth-atmosphere interface

    SciTech Connect

    Shiozawa, Toshiyuki

    2010-12-15

    For the purpose of providing for a theoretical background for the study of electromagnetic fields generated by precursory effects of earthquakes, the problem of transmission and total reflection at the earth-atmosphere interface is investigated in detail for a subhertz plane electromagnetic wave incident from the earth's crust. The term ''subhertz'' means 'below 1 Hz'. First, for the special case of normal incidence, the overall power transmission coefficient at the earth-atmosphere interface is found to take a maximum value at a definite frequency f{sub 0} which is inversely proportional to the square of the depth of a virtual hypocenter. A typical value of f{sub 0} falls around 0.01 Hz. For oblique incidence as well, this feature of the overall power transmission coefficient is retained except in the vicinity of the critical angle of incidence for the H-wave. At the critical angle of incidence, the power flow carried by a surface wave along the interface becomes anomalously large for the H-wave. However, over a wide range of angles of incidence greater than the critical angle, the power flow carried by the E-wave exceeds that carried by the H-wave by orders of magnitude. Finally, the energy conservation relations for the incident, reflected, and transmitted waves at the earth-atmosphere interface are discussed. For an incident wave coming from the earth's crust, the interactive power between the incident and reflected waves plays a crucial role for the conservation of energy at the interface.

  5. Mapping the downwelling atmospheric radiation at the Earth's surface: A research strategy

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Raschke, E.

    1986-01-01

    A strategy is presented along with background material for determining downward atmospheric radiation at the Earth's surface on a regional scale but over the entire globe, using available information on the temperature and humidity of the air near the ground and at cloud base altitudes. Most of these parameters can be inferred from satellite radiance measurements. Careful validation of the derived radiances will be required using ground-based direct measurements of radiances, to avoid systematic biases of these derived field quantities.

  6. Atmospheric circulation modeling of super Earths and terrestrial extrasolar planets using the SPARC/MITgcm

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kataria, T.; Showman, A. P.; Haberle, R. M.; Marley, M. S.; Fortney, J. J.; Freedman, R. S.

    2013-12-01

    The field of exoplanets continues to be a booming field of research in astronomy and planetary science, with numerous ground-based (e.g., SuperWASP, HARPS-N and S) and space-based surveys (e.g., Kepler) that detect and characterize planets ranging from hot Jupiters, Jovian-sized planets orbiting less than 0.1 AU from their star, to super Earths and terrestrial exoplanets, planets that have masses equal to or less than 10 times that of Earth with a range of orbital distances. Atmospheric circulation modeling plays an important role in the characterization of these planets, helping to constrain observations that probe their atmospheres. These models have proven successful in understanding observations of transiting exoplanets (when the planet passes in front of the star along our line of sight) particularly when the planet is passing through secondary eclipse (when the planet's dayside is visible). In modeling super Earths and terrestrial exoplanets, we must consider not only planets with thick fluid envelopes, but also traditional terrestrial planets with solid surfaces and thinner atmospheres. To that end, we present results from studies investigating the atmospheric circulation of these classes of planets using the SPARC/MITgcm, a state-of-the-art model which couples the MIT General Circulation Model with a plane-parallel, two-stream, non-gray radiative transfer model. We will present results from two studies, the first focusing on the circulation of GJ 1214b, a super-Earth detected by the MEarth ground-based survey, and a second study which explores the circulation of terrestrial exoplanets orbiting M-dwarfs.

  7. Detectability of Surface and Atmospheric Signatures in the Disk-averaged Spectra of the Earth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tinetti, G.; Meadows, V. S.; Crisp, D.; Kiang, N.; Fishbein, E.; Kahn, B.; Turnbull, M.

    2006-05-01

    We have developed a spatially and spectrally-resolved computer model of the Earth to explore the observational sensitivity to atmospheric and surface properties, and biosignatures, in disk-averaged spectra.This comprehensive model can also be used to analyze and interpret Earthshine data.Atmospheric, cloud and surface properties from existing observations and modeling studies are input to the model, which uses the Spectral Mapping Atmospheric Radiative Transfer (SMART) model to generate UV to far-IR spatially resolved high-resolution synthetic spectra. Disk-averaged synthetic spectra generated by the model were validated in the visible/Near-IR spectral range against disk- averaged Earth observations taken by the Mars Global Surveyor Thermal Emission Spectrometer (MGS- TES),the ESA Mars Express Omega instrument, and ground-based observations of earthshine reflected from the unilluminated portion of the Moon. Several atmospheric species can be identified in disk-averaged Earth spectra, and potentially detected depending on the wavelength range and resolving power of the instrument. At optical wavelengths (0.4 to 0.9 microns) O3, H2O, O2 and oxygen dimer (O2)2 are clearly apparent. CH4, N2O, CO2, O3 and H2O produce features in the near-IR (1 to 5 microns). The modeled spectra are also strongly phase-dependent, and a comprehensive 3-D model is needed to accurately model the observations. To explore the detectability of planetary characteristics, we simulated cases not available from the observational data sets, including an experiment to determine the detectability of the vegetation red edge as a function of planetary cloud cover. Our modeling shows that while land surface cover of vegetation on Earth produces a strong disk-averaged signal for a cloudless planet, even when the signal is averaged over the daily time scale, the detectability is significantly reduced in the presence of clouds, but is also a function of the observed planetary phase.

  8. Temporal trends in earth-atmosphere system reflectance factor for sagebrush steppe vegetation communities

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Strong, Laurence L.

    1987-01-01

    Four consecutive Landsat-5 Thematic Mapper acquisitions were used to examine trends in earth-atmosphere system reflectance factors of sagebrush steppe vegetation communities following soil moisture recharge from snow melt. Significant differences in trends between vegetation communities correspond to known differences in the initiation and duration of active vegetation growth. Information on short-term vegetation processes are a valuable supplement to estimates of total vegetation cover which can be obtained using satellite brightness images at less frequent temporal intervals.

  9. Stochastic simulation of interaction between solar radio radiation and rarefied gas of the earth's upper atmosphere.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marov, M. Ya.; Shematovich, V. I.; Zmievskaya, G. I.

    A numerical model is considered for the interaction between the shortwave solar radiation and the earth's upper atmosphere, which results in photoexcitation, photoionization and photodissociation processes violating thermodynamical equilibrium in a medium. The field of radiation is assumed to be equivalent to a set of photons with energies corresponding to the considered spectrum of radiation. An analogy of collisional processes in a partially ionized rarefied gas is used that leads to photochemical reactions.

  10. A new software tool for computing Earth's atmospheric transmission of near- and far-infrared radiation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lord, Steven D.

    1992-01-01

    This report describes a new software tool, ATRAN, which computes the transmittance of Earth's atmosphere at near- and far-infrared wavelengths. We compare the capabilities of this program with others currently available and demonstrate its utility for observational data calibration and reduction. The program employs current water-vapor and ozone models to produce fast and accurate transmittance spectra for wavelengths ranging from 0.8 microns to 10 mm.

  11. Effect of the shrinking dipole on solar-terrestrial energy input to the Earth's atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McPherron, R. L.

    2011-12-01

    The global average temperature of the Earth is rising rapidly. This rise is primarily attributed to the release of greenhouse gases as a result of human activity. However, it has been argued that changes in radiation from the Sun might play a role. Most energy input to the Earth is light in the visible spectrum. Our best measurements suggest this power input has been constant for the last 40 years (the space age) apart from a small 11-year variation due to the solar cycle of sunspot activity. Another possible energy input from the Sun is the solar wind. The supersonic solar wind carries the magnetic field of the Sun into the solar system. As it passes the Earth it can connect to the Earth's magnetic field whenever it is antiparallel t the Earth's field. This connection allows mass, momentum, and energy from the solar wind to enter the magnetosphere producing geomagnetic activity. Ultimately much of this energy is deposited at high latitudes in the form of particle precipitation (aurora) and heating by electrical currents. Although the energy input by this process is miniscule compared to that from visible radiation it might alter the absorption of visible radiation. Two other processes affected by the solar cycle are atmospheric entry of galactic cosmic rays (GCR) and solar energetic protons (SEP). A weak solar magnetic field at sunspot minimum facilitates GCR entry which has been implicated in creation of clouds. Large coronal mass ejections and solar flares create SEP at solar maximum. All of these alternative energy inputs and their effects depend on the strength of the Earth's magnetic field. Currently the Earth's field is decreasing rapidly and conceivably might reverse polarity in 1000 years. In this paper we describe the changes in the Earth's magnetic field and how this might affect GCR, SEP, electrical heating, aurora, and radio propagation. Whether these effects are important in global climate change can only be determined by detailed physical models.

  12. Haze aerosols in the atmosphere of early Earth: manna from heaven.

    PubMed

    Trainer, Melissa G; Pavlov, Alexander A; Curtis, Daniel B; McKay, Christopher P; Worsnop, Douglas R; Delia, Alice E; Toohey, Darin W; Toon, Owen B; Tolbert, Margaret A

    2004-01-01

    An organic haze layer in the upper atmosphere of Titan plays a crucial role in the atmospheric composition and climate of that moon. Such a haze layer may also have existed on the early Earth, providing an ultraviolet shield for greenhouse gases needed to warm the planet enough for life to arise and evolve. Despite the implications of such a haze layer, little is known about the organic material produced under early Earth conditions when both CO(2) and CH(4) may have been abundant in the atmosphere. For the first time, we experimentally demonstrate that organic haze can be generated in different CH(4)/CO(2) ratios. Here, we show that haze aerosols are able to form at CH(4) mixing ratios of 1,000 ppmv, a level likely to be present on early Earth. In addition, we find that organic hazes will form at C/O ratios as low as 0.6, which is lower than the predicted value of unity. We also show that as the C/O ratio decreases, the organic particles produced are more oxidized and contain biologically labile compounds. After life arose, the haze may thus have provided food for biota.

  13. Haze aerosols in the atmosphere of early Earth: manna from heaven.

    PubMed

    Trainer, Melissa G; Pavlov, Alexander A; Curtis, Daniel B; McKay, Christopher P; Worsnop, Douglas R; Delia, Alice E; Toohey, Darin W; Toon, Owen B; Tolbert, Margaret A

    2004-01-01

    An organic haze layer in the upper atmosphere of Titan plays a crucial role in the atmospheric composition and climate of that moon. Such a haze layer may also have existed on the early Earth, providing an ultraviolet shield for greenhouse gases needed to warm the planet enough for life to arise and evolve. Despite the implications of such a haze layer, little is known about the organic material produced under early Earth conditions when both CO(2) and CH(4) may have been abundant in the atmosphere. For the first time, we experimentally demonstrate that organic haze can be generated in different CH(4)/CO(2) ratios. Here, we show that haze aerosols are able to form at CH(4) mixing ratios of 1,000 ppmv, a level likely to be present on early Earth. In addition, we find that organic hazes will form at C/O ratios as low as 0.6, which is lower than the predicted value of unity. We also show that as the C/O ratio decreases, the organic particles produced are more oxidized and contain biologically labile compounds. After life arose, the haze may thus have provided food for biota. PMID:15684721

  14. Surface-atmosphere interactions on Titan compared with those on the pre-biotic Earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lunine, J. I.; Mckay, C. P.

    1995-01-01

    The surface and atmosphere of Titan constitute a system which is potentially as complex as that of the Earth, with the possibility of precipitation, surface erosion due to liquids, chemistry in large surface or subsurface hydrocarbon resevoirs, surface expressions of internal activity, and occasional major impacts leading to crustal melting. While none of the above have been observed as yet, the composition, density and thermal properties of Titan's atmosphere make it uniquely suited in the outer solar system as a place where such processes may occur. The one attribute of the Earth not expected on Titan is biological activity, which has had a profound effect on the evolution of the Earth's surface-atmosphere system. The earliest environment of Titan could have been warm enough for liquid ammonia-water solutions to exist on or near surface; pre-biotic organic processes may have taken place in such an environment. After a few hundred million years surface ammonia-water would have disappeard. Therefore, study of Titan through Cassini/Huygens mission, planned for launch in 1997, primarily affords the opportunity to understand planet-side surface-atmophsre interactions in the presence of fluids but in the absence of life. More speculative is the possibility that endogenic and exogenic heating continue to provide short-lived environments on Titan wherein pre-biotic organic processes in the presence of water happen.

  15. Dynamics of Space Particles and Spacecrafts Passing by the Atmosphere of the Earth

    PubMed Central

    Prado, Antonio Fernando Bertachini de Almeida; Golebiewska, Justyna

    2013-01-01

    The present research studies the motion of a particle or a spacecraft that comes from an orbit around the Sun, which can be elliptic or hyperbolic, and that makes a passage close enough to the Earth such that it crosses its atmosphere. The idea is to measure the Sun-particle two-body energy before and after this passage in order to verify its variation as a function of the periapsis distance, angle of approach, and velocity at the periapsis of the particle. The full system is formed by the Sun, the Earth, and the particle or the spacecraft. The Sun and the Earth are in circular orbits around their center of mass and the motion is planar for all the bodies involved. The equations of motion consider the restricted circular planar three-body problem with the addition of the atmospheric drag. The initial conditions of the particle or spacecraft (position and velocity) are given at the periapsis of its trajectory around the Earth. PMID:24396298

  16. Oxygen dynamics in the aftermath of the Great Oxidation of Earth's atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Canfield, Donald E.; Ngombi-Pemba, Lauriss; Hammarlund, Emma U.; Bengtson, Stefan; Chaussidon, Marc; Gauthier-Lafaye, François; Meunier, Alain; Riboulleau, Armelle; Rollion-Bard, Claire; Rouxel, Olivier; Asael, Dan; Pierson-Wickmann, Anne-Catherine; El Albani, Abderrazak

    2013-10-01

    The oxygen content of Earth's atmosphere has varied greatly through time, progressing from exceptionally low levels before about 2.3 billion years ago, to much higher levels afterward. In the absence of better information, we usually view the progress in Earth's oxygenation as a series of steps followed by periods of relative stasis. In contrast to this view, and as reported here, a dynamic evolution of Earth's oxygenation is recorded in ancient sediments from the Republic of Gabon from between about 2,150 and 2,080 million years ago. The oldest sediments in this sequence were deposited in well-oxygenated deep waters whereas the youngest were deposited in euxinic waters, which were globally extensive. These fluctuations in oxygenation were likely driven by the comings and goings of the Lomagundi carbon isotope excursion, the longest-lived positive δ13C excursion in Earth history, generating a huge oxygen source to the atmosphere. As the Lomagundi event waned, the oxygen source became a net oxygen sink as Lomagundi organic matter became oxidized, driving oxygen to low levels; this state may have persisted for 200 million years.

  17. Dynamics of space particles and spacecrafts passing by the atmosphere of the Earth.

    PubMed

    Gomes, Vivian Martins; Prado, Antonio Fernando Bertachini de Almeida; Golebiewska, Justyna

    2013-01-01

    The present research studies the motion of a particle or a spacecraft that comes from an orbit around the Sun, which can be elliptic or hyperbolic, and that makes a passage close enough to the Earth such that it crosses its atmosphere. The idea is to measure the Sun-particle two-body energy before and after this passage in order to verify its variation as a function of the periapsis distance, angle of approach, and velocity at the periapsis of the particle. The full system is formed by the Sun, the Earth, and the particle or the spacecraft. The Sun and the Earth are in circular orbits around their center of mass and the motion is planar for all the bodies involved. The equations of motion consider the restricted circular planar three-body problem with the addition of the atmospheric drag. The initial conditions of the particle or spacecraft (position and velocity) are given at the periapsis of its trajectory around the Earth.

  18. Oxygen dynamics in the aftermath of the Great Oxidation of Earth's atmosphere.

    PubMed

    Canfield, Donald E; Ngombi-Pemba, Lauriss; Hammarlund, Emma U; Bengtson, Stefan; Chaussidon, Marc; Gauthier-Lafaye, François; Meunier, Alain; Riboulleau, Armelle; Rollion-Bard, Claire; Rouxel, Olivier; Asael, Dan; Pierson-Wickmann, Anne-Catherine; El Albani, Abderrazak

    2013-10-15

    The oxygen content of Earth's atmosphere has varied greatly through time, progressing from exceptionally low levels before about 2.3 billion years ago, to much higher levels afterward. In the absence of better information, we usually view the progress in Earth's oxygenation as a series of steps followed by periods of relative stasis. In contrast to this view, and as reported here, a dynamic evolution of Earth's oxygenation is recorded in ancient sediments from the Republic of Gabon from between about 2,150 and 2,080 million years ago. The oldest sediments in this sequence were deposited in well-oxygenated deep waters whereas the youngest were deposited in euxinic waters, which were globally extensive. These fluctuations in oxygenation were likely driven by the comings and goings of the Lomagundi carbon isotope excursion, the longest-lived positive δ(13)C excursion in Earth history, generating a huge oxygen source to the atmosphere. As the Lomagundi event waned, the oxygen source became a net oxygen sink as Lomagundi organic matter became oxidized, driving oxygen to low levels; this state may have persisted for 200 million years. PMID:24082125

  19. Oxygen dynamics in the aftermath of the Great Oxidation of Earth's atmosphere.

    PubMed

    Canfield, Donald E; Ngombi-Pemba, Lauriss; Hammarlund, Emma U; Bengtson, Stefan; Chaussidon, Marc; Gauthier-Lafaye, François; Meunier, Alain; Riboulleau, Armelle; Rollion-Bard, Claire; Rouxel, Olivier; Asael, Dan; Pierson-Wickmann, Anne-Catherine; El Albani, Abderrazak

    2013-10-15

    The oxygen content of Earth's atmosphere has varied greatly through time, progressing from exceptionally low levels before about 2.3 billion years ago, to much higher levels afterward. In the absence of better information, we usually view the progress in Earth's oxygenation as a series of steps followed by periods of relative stasis. In contrast to this view, and as reported here, a dynamic evolution of Earth's oxygenation is recorded in ancient sediments from the Republic of Gabon from between about 2,150 and 2,080 million years ago. The oldest sediments in this sequence were deposited in well-oxygenated deep waters whereas the youngest were deposited in euxinic waters, which were globally extensive. These fluctuations in oxygenation were likely driven by the comings and goings of the Lomagundi carbon isotope excursion, the longest-lived positive δ(13)C excursion in Earth history, generating a huge oxygen source to the atmosphere. As the Lomagundi event waned, the oxygen source became a net oxygen sink as Lomagundi organic matter became oxidized, driving oxygen to low levels; this state may have persisted for 200 million years.

  20. Galactic cosmic rays on extrasolar Earth-like planets. II. Atmospheric implications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grießmeier, J.-M.; Tabataba-Vakili, F.; Stadelmann, A.; Grenfell, J. L.; Atri, D.

    2016-03-01

    Context. Theoretical arguments indicate that close-in terrestial exoplanets may have weak magnetic fields. As described in the companion article (Paper I), a weak magnetic field results in a high flux of galactic cosmic rays to the top of the planetary atmosphere. Aims: We investigate effects that may result from a high flux of galactic cosmic rays both throughout the atmosphere and at the planetary surface. Methods: Using an air shower approach, we calculate how the atmospheric chemistry and temperature change under the influence of galactic cosmic rays for Earth-like (N2-O2 dominated) atmospheres. We evaluate the production and destruction rate of atmospheric biosignature molecules. We derive planetary emission and transmission spectra to study the influence of galactic cosmic rays on biosignature detectability. We then calculate the resulting surface UV flux, the surface particle flux, and the associated equivalent biological dose rates. Results: We find that up to 20% of stratospheric ozone is destroyed by cosmic-ray protons. The effect on the planetary spectra, however, is negligible. The reduction of the planetary ozone layer leads to an increase in the weighted surface UV flux by two orders of magnitude under stellar UV flare conditions. The resulting biological effective dose rate is, however, too low to strongly affect surface life. We also examine the surface particle flux: For a planet with a terrestrial atmosphere (with a surface pressure of 1033 hPa), a reduction of the magnetic shielding efficiency can increase the biological radiation dose rate by a factor of two, which is non-critical for biological systems. For a planet with a weaker atmosphere (with a surface pressure of 97.8 hPa), the planetary magnetic field has a much stronger influence on the biological radiation dose, changing it by up to two orders of magnitude. Conclusions: For a planet with an Earth-like atmospheric pressure, weak or absent magnetospheric shielding against galactic cosmic

  1. Estimation of the cosmic ray ionization in the Earth's atmosphere during GLE71

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lev, Dorman

    2016-07-01

    DYASTIMA is an application, based on Geant4, which simulates the cascades of particles that are generated due to the interactions of cosmic ray particles with the atmospheres of the planets. The first version of DYASTIMA has been successfully applied to the Earth's atmosphere, providing results that are in accordance with the publications of other models. Since then, important improvements and extensions have been made to this application, including a graphical user interface environment that allows the more effective management of the configuration parameters. Also, the actual modeling of the atmosphere has been changed allowing the definition of more complex cases and at the same time providing, in a more efficient way (with respect to the program's previous version) enhanced outputs. In this work, we combine the new version of DYASTIMA with the NMBANGLE PPOLA model, that estimates the spectrum of SEPs during relativistic proton events using ground level neutron monitor data from the worldwide network. Such a joint model has as a primary scope the simulation of a SEP event and of its secondary products at different altitudes in the Earth's atmosphere, providing at the same time an estimation of the respective ionization rates and of their spatial and temporal dependence. We apply this joint model to GLE 71, on 17 May 2012, and we discuss the results.

  2. The Breath of Planet Earth: Atmospheric Circulation. Assimilation of Surface Wind Observations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Atlas, Robert; Bloom, Stephen; Otterman, Joseph

    2000-01-01

    Differences in air pressure are a major cause of atmospheric circulation. Because heat excites the movement of atoms, warm temperatures cause, air molecules to expand. Because those molecules now occupy a larger space, the pressure that their weight exerts is decreased. Air from surrounding high-pressure areas is pushed toward the low-pressure areas, creating circulation. This process causes a major pattern of global atmosphere movement known as meridional circulation. In this form of convection, or vertical air movement, heated equatorial air rises and travels through the upper atmosphere toward higher latitudes. Air just above the equator heads toward the North Pole, and air just below the equator moves southward. This air movement fills the gap created where increased air pressure pushes down cold air. The ,cold air moves along the surface back toward the equator, replacing the air masses that rise there. Another influence on atmospheric. circulation is the Coriolis force. Because of the Earth's rotation, large-scale wind currents move in the direction of this axial spin around low-pressure areas. Wind rotates counterclockwise in the Northern Hemisphere and clockwise in the Southern Hemisphere. just as the Earth's rotation affects airflow, so too does its surface. In the phenomenon of orographic lifting, elevated topographic features such as mountain ranges lift air as it moves up their surface.

  3. XUV complex refractive indices of aerosols in the atmospheres of Titan and the primitive Earth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gavilan, Lisseth; Neumann, Maciej; Bulkin, Pavel; Popescu, Horia; Steffan, Martin; Esser, Norbert; Carrasco, Nathalie

    2016-10-01

    The complex refractive indices of tholins, simulating aerosols in the atmosphere of Titan and the primitive earth, have been measured over a wide spectral range, including the soft X-ray, vacuum-ultraviolet (VUV), and UV-Visible. The soft X-ray and VUV spectral ranges are in particular relevant to radiative transfer models of solar irradiation of primitive atmospheres (Lammer et al. 2008) and may elucidate the (anti-)greenhouse potential of photochemical aerosols.Thin films were grown using the PAMPRE capacitively coupled plasma setup (Szopa et al. 2006; Carrasco et al. 2009). Gas mixtures consisting of CH4/N2 with 5:95 ratios were used to simulate Titan's atmospheric composition. For the primitive Earth, gas mixtures of N2/CO2/H2 and N2/CO2/CH4 were used as described in Fleury et al. (2014).State-of-the-art laboratory techniques were used to determine the refractive indices of such tholin films. These include VUV ellipsometry (performed in collaboration with the Metrology Light Source in Berlin) and synchrotron X-ray spectroscopy (performed at the SEXTANTS beamline of the SOLEIL synchrotron). While VUV spectroscopy reveals new electronic transitions due to plasmon resonances in tholins, X-ray spectra reveal the C and O absorption edges of these solids. The refractive indices are compared to results from Khare et al. (1984). Implications on the optical properties of these aerosol analogs on the radiative modeling of primitive atmospheres will be discussed.

  4. Bolide impacts and the oxidation state of carbon in the earth's early atmosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kasting, James F.

    1990-01-01

    A one-dimensional photochemical model was used to examine the effect of bolide impacts on the oxidation state of earth's primitive atmosphere. The impact rate should have been high prior to 3.8 Ga before present, based on evidence derived from the moon. Impacts of comets or carbonaceous asteroids should have enhanced the atmospheric CO/CO2 ratio by bringing in CO ice and/or organic carbon that can be oxidized to CO in the impact plume. Ordinary chondritic impactors would contain elemental iron that could have reacted with ambient CO2 to give CO. Nitric oxide (NO) should also have been produced by reaction between ambient CO2 and N2 in the hot impact plumes. High NO concentrations increase the atmospheric CO/CO2 ratio by increasing the rainout rate of oxidized gases. According to the model, atmospheric CO/CO2 ratios of unity or greater are possible during the first several hundred million years of earth's history, provided that dissolved CO was not rapidly oxidized to bicarbonate in the ocean.

  5. On the average temperature of airless spherical bodies and the magnitude of Earth's atmospheric thermal effect.

    PubMed

    Volokin, Den; ReLlez, Lark

    2014-01-01

    The presence of atmosphere can appreciably warm a planet's surface above the temperature of an airless environment. Known as a natural Greenhouse Effect (GE), this near-surface Atmospheric Thermal Enhancement (ATE) as named herein is presently entirely attributed to the absorption of up-welling long-wave radiation by greenhouse gases. Often quoted as 33 K for Earth, GE is estimated as a difference between planet's observed mean surface temperature and an effective radiating temperature calculated from the globally averaged absorbed solar flux using the Stefan-Boltzmann (SB) radiation law. This approach equates a planet's average temperature in the absence of greenhouse gases or atmosphere to an effective emission temperature assuming ATE ≡ GE. The SB law is also routinely employed to estimating the mean temperatures of airless bodies. We demonstrate that this formula as applied to spherical objects is mathematically incorrect owing to Hölder's inequality between integrals and leads to biased results such as a significant underestimation of Earth's ATE. We derive a new expression for the mean physical temperature of airless bodies based on an analytic integration of the SB law over a sphere that accounts for effects of regolith heat storage and cosmic background radiation on nighttime temperatures. Upon verifying our model against Moon surface temperature data provided by the NASA Diviner Lunar Radiometer Experiment, we propose it as a new analytic standard for evaluating the thermal environment of airless bodies. Physical evidence is presented that Earth's ATE should be assessed against the temperature of an equivalent airless body such as the Moon rather than a hypothetical atmosphere devoid of greenhouse gases. Employing the new temperature formula we show that Earth's total ATE is ~90 K, not 33 K, and that ATE = GE + TE, where GE is the thermal effect of greenhouse gases, while TE > 15 K is a thermodynamic enhancement independent of the

  6. On the average temperature of airless spherical bodies and the magnitude of Earth's atmospheric thermal effect.

    PubMed

    Volokin, Den; ReLlez, Lark

    2014-01-01

    The presence of atmosphere can appreciably warm a planet's surface above the temperature of an airless environment. Known as a natural Greenhouse Effect (GE), this near-surface Atmospheric Thermal Enhancement (ATE) as named herein is presently entirely attributed to the absorption of up-welling long-wave radiation by greenhouse gases. Often quoted as 33 K for Earth, GE is estimated as a difference between planet's observed mean surface temperature and an effective radiating temperature calculated from the globally averaged absorbed solar flux using the Stefan-Boltzmann (SB) radiation law. This approach equates a planet's average temperature in the absence of greenhouse gases or atmosphere to an effective emission temperature assuming ATE ≡ GE. The SB law is also routinely employed to estimating the mean temperatures of airless bodies. We demonstrate that this formula as applied to spherical objects is mathematically incorrect owing to Hölder's inequality between integrals and leads to biased results such as a significant underestimation of Earth's ATE. We derive a new expression for the mean physical temperature of airless bodies based on an analytic integration of the SB law over a sphere that accounts for effects of regolith heat storage and cosmic background radiation on nighttime temperatures. Upon verifying our model against Moon surface temperature data provided by the NASA Diviner Lunar Radiometer Experiment, we propose it as a new analytic standard for evaluating the thermal environment of airless bodies. Physical evidence is presented that Earth's ATE should be assessed against the temperature of an equivalent airless body such as the Moon rather than a hypothetical atmosphere devoid of greenhouse gases. Employing the new temperature formula we show that Earth's total ATE is ~90 K, not 33 K, and that ATE = GE + TE, where GE is the thermal effect of greenhouse gases, while TE > 15 K is a thermodynamic enhancement independent of the

  7. Photonuclear channel of {sup 7}Be production in the Earth's atmosphere

    SciTech Connect

    Bezuglov, M. V.; Malyshevsky, V. S.; Malykhina, T. V.; Torgovkin, A. V.; Fomin, G. V.; Shramenko, B. I.

    2012-04-15

    Measurements of average values of cross sections for the A({gamma},X){sup 7}Be photonuclear reactions on nitrogen, oxygen, and carbon of natural isotopic composition were performed in the energy range from the threshold to 90 MeV. On the basis of the measured cross sections for {sup 7}Be photoproduction and on the basis of the results obtained by simulating the nuclear-electromagnetic cascade in the Earth's atmosphere, the contribution of the photonuclear mechanism to the production of the cosmogenic radioisotope {sup 7}Be in the atmosphere and its latitude dependence were investigated for the first time. It is shown that the contribution of the photonuclear mechanism is commensurate with the contribution of the proton and neutron mechanisms of 7Be production in the atmosphere and that the inclusion of this mechanism is mandatory in analyzing the accumulation and transfer of {sup 7}Be in the planetary boundary layer.

  8. Spectral Invariant Approximation within Atmospheric Radiative Transfer; Applications to EarthCare

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Marshak, Alexander

    2012-01-01

    Certain algebraic combinations of single-scattering albedo and solar radiation reflected from, or transmitted through, vegetation canopies do not vary with wavelength. These "spectrally-invariant relationships" are the consequence of wavelength independence of the extinction coefficient and scattering phase function in vegetation. In general, this wavelength-independence does not hold in the atmosphere, but in cloud-dominated atmospheres the total extinction and total scattering phase function vary only weakly with wavelength. We identify the conditions under which the spectrally-invariant approximation can accurately describe the extinction and scattering properties of cloudy atmospheres. Validity of the assumptions and accuracy of the approximation is tested with radiative transfer calculations. We discuss the physics behind this phenomenon and possible applications to remote sensing, climate, and the EarthCare, mission in particular.

  9. New Atmospheric and Oceanic Angular Momentum Datasets for Predictions of Earth Rotation/Polar Motion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Salstein, D. A.; Stamatakos, N.

    2014-12-01

    We are reviewing the state of the art in available datasets for both atmospheric angular momentum (AAM) and oceanic angular momentum (OAM) for the purposes of analysis and prediction of both polar motion and length of day series. Both analyses and forecasts of these quantities have been used separately and in combination to aid in short and medium range predictions of Earth rotation parameters. The AAM and OAM combination, with the possible addition of hydrospheric angular momentum can form a proxy index for the Earth rotation parameters themselves due to the conservation of angular momentum in the Earth system. Such a combination of angular momentum of the geophysical fluids has helped in forecasts within periods up to about 10 days, due to the dynamic models, and together with extended statistical predictions of Earth rotation parameters out even as far as 90 days, according to Dill et al. (2013). We assess other dataset combinations that can be used in such analysis and prediction efforts for the Earth rotation parameters, and demonstrate the corresponding skill levels in doing so.

  10. Two cases of atmospheric escape in the Solar System: Titan and Earth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dandouras, I.

    2012-01-01

    Escape into space of the constituents of a planetary upper atmosphere can occur either in the form of neutral gas (thermal escape or non-thermal escape), or in the form of plasma. The long-term stability of an atmosphere results from the balance between source and escape rates. Two cases will be examined: Titan and Earth. Titan is the second largest planetary satellite in the Solar System and is the only one that has an atmosphere as substantial as that of the Earth. Titan's nitrogen rich atmosphere is embedded within Saturn's magnetosphere, and is directly bombarded by energetic ions due to Titan's lack of a significant intrinsic magnetic field. In addition to thermal escape, energy input from Saturn's magnetosphere and from Solar UV radiation can drive several non-thermal escape mechanisms in Titan's upper atmosphere: sputtering, dissociation and dissociative ionization of molecular nitrogen producing pick-up ions, photochemical production of fast neutrals etc. Earth also constantly loses matter, mostly in the form of H+ and O+ ions, through various outflow processes from the upper atmosphere and ionosphere. Most of the ions are low-energy (< 1 eV) but can escape from the high-latitude ionosphere and travel along open magnetic field lines into the magnetospheric tail lobes. At lower latitudes the main magnetospheric plasma reservoir is the plasmasphere, which is a toroidal region encircling the Earth and containing cold and dense plasma. Plasma plumes, forming in the outer plasmasphere and released outwards, constitute a well-established mode for plasmaspheric material release to the magnetosphere. They are associated to geomagnetically active periods and the related electric field change. In 1992 Lemaire and Shunk proposed the existence of an additional mode for plasmaspheric material release and escape: a plasmaspheric wind, steadily transporting cold plasmaspheric plasma outwards across the geomagnetic field lines. This has been proposed on a theoretical basis

  11. Bolide impacts and the oxidation state of carbon in the Earth's early atmosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kasting, J. F.

    1992-01-01

    A one-dimensional photochemical model was used to examine the effect of bolide impacts on the oxidation state of Earth's primitive atmosphere. The impact rate should have been high prior to 3.8 Ga before present, based on evidence derived from the Moon. Impacts of comets or carbonaceous asteroids should have enhanced the atmospheric CO/CO2 ratio by bringing in CO ice and/or organic carbon that can be oxidized to CO in the impact plume. Ordinary chondritic impactors would contain elemental iron that could have reacted with ambient CO2 to give CO. Nitric oxide (NO) should also have been produced by reaction between ambient CO2 and N2 in the hot impact plumes. High NO concentrations increase the atmospheric CO/CO2 ratio by increasing the rainout rate of oxidized gases. According to the model, atmospheric CO/CO2 ratios of unity or greater are possible during the first several hundred million years of Earth's history, provided that dissolved CO was not rapidly oxidized to bicarbonate in the ocean. Specifically, high atmospheric CO/CO2 ratios are possible if either: (1) the climate was cool (like today's climate), so that hydration of dissolved CO to formate was slow, or (2) the formate formed from CO was efficiently converted into volatile, reduced carbon compounds, such as methane. A high atmospheric CO/CO2 ratio may have helped to facilitate prebiotic synthesis by enhancing the production rates of hydrogen cyanide and formaldehyde. Formaldehyde may have been produced even more efficiently by photochemical reduction of bicarbonate and formate in Fe(++)-rich surface waters.

  12. Kinetic Theory of Meteor Plasma in the Earth's atmosphere: Implications for Radar Head Echo

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dimant, Y. S.; Oppenheim, M. M.

    2015-12-01

    Every second millions of tiny meteoroids hit the Earth from space, vast majority too small to be observed visually. However, radars detect the plasma they generate and use the collected data to characterize the incoming meteoroids and the atmosphere in which they disintegrate. This diagnostics requires a detailed quantitative understanding of formation of the meteor plasma and how it interacts with the Earth's atmosphere. Fast-descending meteoroids become detectable to radars after they heat due to collisions with atmospheric molecules sufficiently and start ablating. The ablated material then collides into atmospheric molecules and forms plasma around the meteoroid. Reflection of radar pulses from this plasma produces a localized signal called a head echo often accompanied by a much longer non-specular trail (see the Figure). Using first principles, we have developed a consistent collisional kinetic theory of the near-meteoroid plasma responsible for the radar head echo. This theory produces analytic expressions describing the ion and neutral velocity distributions along with the detailed 3-D spatial structure of the near-meteoroid plasma. These expressions predict a number of unexpected features such as shell-like velocity distributions. This theory shows that the meteoroid plasma develops over a length-scale close to the ion mean free path with a strongly non-Maxwellian velocity distribution. The spatial distribution of the plasma density shows significant deviations from a Gaussian law usually employed in head-echo modeling. This analytical model will serve as a basis for a more accurate quantitative interpretation of radar measurements, estimates of the ionization efficiency, and should help calculate meteoroid and atmosphere parameters from radar head-echo observations. This theory could also help clarify the physical nature of electromagnetic pulses observed during recent meteor showers and associated with the passage of fast-moving meteors through the

  13. Dynamic model constraints on oxygen-17 depletion in atmospheric O2 after a snowball Earth

    PubMed Central

    Cao, Xiaobin; Bao, Huiming

    2013-01-01

    A large perturbation in atmospheric CO2 and O2 or bioproductivity will result in a drastic pulse of 17O change in atmospheric O2, as seen in the Marinoan Oxygen-17 Depletion (MOSD) event in the immediate aftermath of a global deglaciation 635 Mya. The exact nature of the perturbation, however, is debated. Here we constructed a coupled, four-box, and quick-response biosphere–atmosphere model to examine both the steady state and dynamics of the MOSD event. Our model shows that the ultra-high CO2 concentrations proposed by the “snowball’ Earth hypothesis produce a typical MOSD duration of less than 106 y and a magnitude of 17O depletion reaching approximately −35‰. Both numbers are in remarkable agreement with geological constraints from South China and Svalbard. Moderate CO2 and low O2 concentration (e.g., 3,200 parts per million by volume and 0.01 bar, respectively) could produce distinct sulfate 17O depletion only if postglacial marine bioproductivity was impossibly low. Our dynamic model also suggests that a snowball in which the ocean is isolated from the atmosphere by a continuous ice cover may be distinguished from one in which cracks in the ice permit ocean–atmosphere exchange only if partial pressure of atmospheric O2 is larger than 0.02 bar during the snowball period and records of weathering-derived sulfate are available for the very first few tens of thousands of years after the onset of the meltdown. In any case, a snowball Earth is a precondition for the observed MOSD event. PMID:23898167

  14. Dynamic model constraints on oxygen-17 depletion in atmospheric O2 after a snowball Earth.

    PubMed

    Cao, Xiaobin; Bao, Huiming

    2013-09-01

    A large perturbation in atmospheric CO2 and O2 or bioproductivity will result in a drastic pulse of (17)O change in atmospheric O2, as seen in the Marinoan Oxygen-17 Depletion (MOSD) event in the immediate aftermath of a global deglaciation 635 Mya. The exact nature of the perturbation, however, is debated. Here we constructed a coupled, four-box, and quick-response biosphere-atmosphere model to examine both the steady state and dynamics of the MOSD event. Our model shows that the ultra-high CO2 concentrations proposed by the "snowball' Earth hypothesis produce a typical MOSD duration of less than 10(6) y and a magnitude of (17)O depletion reaching approximately -35‰. Both numbers are in remarkable agreement with geological constraints from South China and Svalbard. Moderate CO2 and low O2 concentration (e.g., 3,200 parts per million by volume and 0.01 bar, respectively) could produce distinct sulfate (17)O depletion only if postglacial marine bioproductivity was impossibly low. Our dynamic model also suggests that a snowball in which the ocean is isolated from the atmosphere by a continuous ice cover may be distinguished from one in which cracks in the ice permit ocean-atmosphere exchange only if partial pressure of atmospheric O2 is larger than 0.02 bar during the snowball period and records of weathering-derived sulfate are available for the very first few tens of thousands of years after the onset of the meltdown. In any case, a snowball Earth is a precondition for the observed MOSD event. PMID:23898167

  15. Dynamic model constraints on oxygen-17 depletion in atmospheric O2 after a snowball Earth.

    PubMed

    Cao, Xiaobin; Bao, Huiming

    2013-09-01

    A large perturbation in atmospheric CO2 and O2 or bioproductivity will result in a drastic pulse of (17)O change in atmospheric O2, as seen in the Marinoan Oxygen-17 Depletion (MOSD) event in the immediate aftermath of a global deglaciation 635 Mya. The exact nature of the perturbation, however, is debated. Here we constructed a coupled, four-box, and quick-response biosphere-atmosphere model to examine both the steady state and dynamics of the MOSD event. Our model shows that the ultra-high CO2 concentrations proposed by the "snowball' Earth hypothesis produce a typical MOSD duration of less than 10(6) y and a magnitude of (17)O depletion reaching approximately -35‰. Both numbers are in remarkable agreement with geological constraints from South China and Svalbard. Moderate CO2 and low O2 concentration (e.g., 3,200 parts per million by volume and 0.01 bar, respectively) could produce distinct sulfate (17)O depletion only if postglacial marine bioproductivity was impossibly low. Our dynamic model also suggests that a snowball in which the ocean is isolated from the atmosphere by a continuous ice cover may be distinguished from one in which cracks in the ice permit ocean-atmosphere exchange only if partial pressure of atmospheric O2 is larger than 0.02 bar during the snowball period and records of weathering-derived sulfate are available for the very first few tens of thousands of years after the onset of the meltdown. In any case, a snowball Earth is a precondition for the observed MOSD event.

  16. Investigation of the effect of atmospheric dust on the determination of total ozone from the earth's ultraviolet reflectivity measurements

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dave, J. V.

    1977-01-01

    Results are presented on the effect of atmospheric aerosols on the value of total ozone, in an atmospheric column of the terrestrial atmosphere, estimated from the simulated measurements of the ultraviolet radiation back scattered by the earth atmosphere models. Simulated measurements were used in five (configuration of the BUV experiment of Nimbus-4 satellite), and in six (configuration of the TOMS section of the SBUV/TOMS experiment on Nimbus-G) narrow spectral regions in the ultraviolet part of the spectrum.

  17. Defining Top-of-Atmosphere Flux Reference Level for Earth Radiation Budget Studies

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Loeb, N. G.; Kato, S.; Wielicki, B. A.

    2002-01-01

    To estimate the earth's radiation budget at the top of the atmosphere (TOA) from satellite-measured radiances, it is necessary to account for the finite geometry of the earth and recognize that the earth is a solid body surrounded by a translucent atmosphere of finite thickness that attenuates solar radiation differently at different heights. As a result, in order to account for all of the reflected solar and emitted thermal radiation from the planet by direct integration of satellite-measured radiances, the measurement viewing geometry must be defined at a reference level well above the earth s surface (e.g., 100 km). This ensures that all radiation contributions, including radiation escaping the planet along slant paths above the earth s tangent point, are accounted for. By using a field-of- view (FOV) reference level that is too low (such as the surface reference level), TOA fluxes for most scene types are systematically underestimated by 1-2 W/sq m. In addition, since TOA flux represents a flow of radiant energy per unit area, and varies with distance from the earth according to the inverse-square law, a reference level is also needed to define satellite-based TOA fluxes. From theoretical radiative transfer calculations using a model that accounts for spherical geometry, the optimal reference level for defining TOA fluxes in radiation budget studies for the earth is estimated to be approximately 20 km. At this reference level, there is no need to explicitly account for horizontal transmission of solar radiation through the atmosphere in the earth radiation budget calculation. In this context, therefore, the 20-km reference level corresponds to the effective radiative top of atmosphere for the planet. Although the optimal flux reference level depends slightly on scene type due to differences in effective transmission of solar radiation with cloud height, the difference in flux caused by neglecting the scene-type dependence is less than 0.1%. If an inappropriate

  18. How do we solve the Faint Young Sun Paradox? Examining diverse proposed atmospheres for Early Earth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goldblatt, C.

    2010-12-01

    The canonical problem in Early Earth climatology is the Faint Young Sun Paradox (FYSP): despite receiving much less energy from the Sun than today, the Earth was at least as warm during the Archean Eon as it is today. Clearly, Early Earth had stronger greenhouse effect or lower albedo, yet despite four decades of study, there is no consensus on the solution. The FYSP requires consideration of very different climate regimes to the present day, so provides a great learning tool for diverse and undiscovered climates in Earth's past and future. I will discuss old and new ideas of enhanced greenhouse gas solutions, present a recent proposal that pressure broadening by a thicker nitrogen atmosphere contributed to the solution [1], and a new analysis of what role clouds could have in resolving the FYSP [2]. Various strong greenhouse gas enhancements have been suggested, but all are subject to some problems. A nitrogen inventory greater than the present level was likely in the Archean atmosphere. This would have given a temperature increase of 3 to 8°C by pressure broadening the absorption lines of greenhouse gases. Cloud changes are evaluated relative to the required radiative forcing of +50 Wm-2 to resolve the FYSP. Plausible changes to low clouds (reducing albedo) or high cloud (strengthening the greenhouse effect) could both contribute at most +15Wm-2, so neither fewer low clouds nor more high clouds can provide enough forcing to resolve the FYSP. Decreased surface albedo can contribute no more than +5 Wm-2 forcing. [1] Goldblatt, C. et al., 2009, Nitrogen-enhanced greenhouse warming on early Earth, Nature Geosci., 2, 891 - 896. doi:10.1038/ngeo692 [2] Goldblatt, C. and Zahnle, K. J., 2010, Clouds and the Faint Young Sun Paradox, Clim. Past Discuss., 6, 1337-1350. doi:10.5194/cpd-6-1337-2010

  19. Aura Atmospheric Data Products and Their Availability from NASA Goddard Earth Sciences DAAC

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ahmad, S.; Johnson, J.; Gopalan, A.; Smith, P.; Leptoukh, G.; Kempler, S.

    2004-01-01

    NASA's EOS-Aura spacecraft was launched successfully on July 15, 2004. The four instruments onboard the spacecraft are the Microwave Limb Sounder (MLS), the Ozone Monitoring Instrument (OMI), the Tropospheric Emission Spectrometer (TES), and the High Resolution Dynamics Limb Sounder (HBDLS). The Aura instruments are designed to gather earth sciences measurements across the ultraviolet, visible, infra-red, thermal and microwave regions of the electromagnetic spectrum. Aura will provide over 70 distinct standard atmospheric data products for use in ozone layer and surface UV-B monitoring, air quality forecast, and atmospheric chemistry and climate change studies (http://eosaura.gsfc.nasa.gov/). These products include earth-atmosphere radiances and solar spectral irradiances; total column, tropospheric, and profiles of ozone and other trace gases, surface W-B flux; clouds and aerosol characteristics; and temperature, geopotential height, and water vapor profiles. The MLS, OMI, and HIRDLS data products will be archived at the NASA Goddard Earth Sciences (GES) Distributed Active Archive Center (DAAC), while data from TES will be archived at NASA Langley Research Center DAAC. Some of the standard products which have gone through quick preliminary checks are already archived at the GES DAAC (http://daac.nsfc.nasa.gov/) and are available to the Aura science team and data validation team members for data validation; and to the application and visualization software developers, for testing their application modules. Once data are corrected for obvious calibration problems and partially validated using in-situ observations, they would be made available to the broader user community. This presentation will provide details of the whole suite of Aura atmospheric data products, and the time line of the availability of the rest of the preliminary products and of the partially validated provisional products. Software and took available for data access, visualization, and data

  20. Observations of the Earth's Radiation Budget in relation to atmospheric hydrology. 4: Atmospheric column radiative cooling over the world's oceans

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stephens, Graeme L.; Slingo, Anthony; Webb, Mark J.; Minnett, Peter J.; Daum, Peter H.; Kleinman, Lawrence; Wittmeyer, Ian; Randall, David A.

    1994-01-01

    This paper introduces a simple method for deriving climatological values of the longwave flux emitted from the clear sky atmosphere to the ice-free ocean surface. It is shown using both theory and data from simulations how the ratio of the surface to top-of-atmosphere (TOA) flux is a simple function of water vapor (W) and a validation of the simple relationship is presented based on a limited set of surface flux measurements. The rms difference between the retrieved surface fluxes and the simulated surface fluxes is approximately 6 W/sq m. The clear sky column cooling rate of the atmosphere is derived from the Earth Radiation Budget Experiment (ERBE) values of the clear sky TOA flux and the surface flux retrieved using Special Scanning Microwave Imager (SSM/I) measurements of w together with ERBE clear sky fluxes. The relationship between this column cooling rate, w, and the sea surface temperature (SST) is explored and it is shown how the cooling rate systematically increases as both w and SST increase. The uncertainty implied in these estmates of cooling are approximately +/- 0.2 K/d. The effects of clouds on this longwave cooling are also explored by placing bounds on the possible impact of clouds on the column cooling rate based on certain assumptions about the effect of clouds on the longwave flux to the surface. It is shown how the longwave effects of clouds in a moist atmosphere where the column water vapor exceeds approximately 30 kg/sq m may be estimated from presently available satellite data with an uncertainty estimated to be approximately 0.2 K/d. Based on an approach described in this paper, we show how clouds in these relatively moist regions decrease the column cooling by almost 50% of the clear sky values and the existence of significant longitudinal gradients in column radiative heating across the equatorial and subtropical Pacific Ocean.

  1. Noble Gas Isotopic Evidence for Primordial Evolution of the Earth's Atmosphere in Three Distinct Stages

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harper, C. L., Jr.; Jacobsen, S. B.

    1995-09-01

    The deep Earth is the key to understanding the primordial evolution of the Earth's atmosphere. However the atmosphere was not derived by degassing of the Earth, as widely held. Isotopic characterization of mantle noble gases and modeling based on this information [1] suggests the atmosphere experienced a 3-stage early history. This follows from 5 basic observations: (i) Ne in the mantle is solar-like, with light (high) 20Ne/22Ne relative to the atmosphere [2]; (ii) mantle Xe has higher 128Xe/130Xe than the atmosphere [3], which carries an extreme heavy isotope enriched mass fractionation signature of >3%/amu (iii) most of the radiogenic Xe from l29I and 244Pu decay in the Earth is not present either in the mantle or in the atmosphere; (iv) the inferred abundances of noble gases in the deep Earth "plume source" are insufficient to generate the present atmospheric abundances, even for whole mantle degassing; and (v) mantle noble gases indicate a 2 component structure, with solar light gases (He and Ne) and planetary heavy gases [4]. The present day noble gas budgets (and likely also N2) must derive from late accretion of a volatile-rich "veneer." This is stage III. Stage II is a naked (no atmosphere) epoch indicated by evidence for Hadean degassing of 244Pu (T1/2 = 80 Ma) fission Xe from the whole mantle, which was not retained in the present atmosphere. The naked stage must have lasted for more than ~200 Ma, and was supported by the early intense solar EUV luminosity. Stage I, a massive solar-composition protoatmosphere, occurred during the Earth's early accretion phase. Its existence is indicated by the presence of the solar gas component in the Earth. This is not attributable to subduction of solar wind rich cosmic dust, or solar wind irradiation of coagulating objects. It is best explained by accretion of a solar composition atmosphere from the nebula. This provided a thermal blanket supporting a magma ocean in which solar gases dissolved. Under these conditions

  2. Ultraviolet Polarimeter for Studying the Aerosol Component in the Earth Atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nevodovskyi, P. V.; Morozhenko, A. V.; Vidmachenko, A. P.; Geraimchuk, M.; Zbrutskyi, A.; Kureniov, Yu.; Sergunin, V.; Hirniak, Yu.; Ivakhiv, O.

    2013-06-01

    The changes of the weather and climate on the Earth depend on the temperature balance of the planet, i.e., on the flow of radiation coming from the Sun and emitted by the Earth into cosmic space. The changes of transparency coefficients (i.e., optical thickness of the atmosphere) and reflection coefficients (i.e., Earth surface) turn out to be decisive factors disrupting this balance. Variations of the gaseous and aerosol components of the atmosphere make an essential contribution into the changeability of the existing balance. The stratosphere and the ozone layer which protects the Earth from a severe ultraviolet radiation are of special importance in the atmosphere. Stratospheric aerosol plays an important role in the formation of a heat regime and in providing a powerful ozone layer (at the altitude of over 30 km). Spectrophotometer investigations made it possible to obtain certain data on the thickness of aerosols on these altitudes. However, its nature (i.e., a real part of the refraction index) and size distribution functions have not be studied so far. Polarization measurements enable one to most correctly determine these characteristics. The leading astronomical observatory of the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine in collaboration with the National Technical University of Ukraine "Kyiv Polytechnic Institute" have been carrying out research since 2005 till nowadays on the development of on-board polarimeters for the purpose of studying the stratospheric aerosol from the orbit of Earth satellites [1, 2]. Based on this research, an experimental small sized polarimeter for investigation of a stratospheric aerosol from the orbit of the satellite was created. It is a dot one-channel ultraviolet polarimeter with a rotated polarization element. Glen prism is used as a polarization element which is initiated into motion by a miniature piezoelectric motor. "Sun-blind" low-sized photomultiplier R 1893 made by "Hamamatsu" Co. serves as a radiation receiver that

  3. Displacements of the earth's surface due to atmospheric loading - Effects of gravity and baseline measurements

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Van Dam, T. M.; Wahr, J. M.

    1987-01-01

    Atmospheric mass loads and deforms the earth's crust. By performing a convolution sum between daily, global barometric pressure data and mass loading Green's functions, the time dependent effects of atmospheric loading, including those associated with short-term synoptic storms, on surface point positioning measurements and surface gravity observations are estimated. The response for both an oceanless earth and an earth with an inverted barometer ocean is calculated. Load responses for near-coastal stations are significantly affected by the inclusion of an inverted barometer ocean. Peak-to-peak vertical displacements are frequently 15-20 mm with accompanying gravity perturbations of 3-6 micro Gal. Baseline changes can be as large as 20 mm or more. The perturbations are largest at higher latitudes and during winter months. These amplitudes are consistent with the results of Rabbel and Zschau (1985), who modeled synoptic pressure disturbances as Gaussian functions of radius around a central point. Deformation can be adequately computed using real pressure data from points within about 1000 km of the station. Knowledge of local pressure, alone, is not sufficient. Rabbel and Zschau's hypothesized corrections for these displacements, which use local pressure and the regionally averaged pressure, prove accurate at points well inland but are, in general, inadequate within a few hundred kilometers of the coast.

  4. A new means for observation of small comets and other water-laden bodies entering earth's upper atmosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Banks, Peter M.

    1989-01-01

    This paper shows that the infrared radiance of comet-associated water vapor clouds described by Frank et al. (1986b) is large relative to natural background emissions. This IR emission arises from scattering of solar radiation and earth-shine and from excitation by upper atmospheric atomic oxygen. As a consequence, observations in space or from high-altitude platforms should provide an unambiguous signature of the entry of such objects into earth's atmosphere.

  5. Modeling the Entry of Micrometeoroids into the Atmospheres of Earth-like Planets

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pevyhouse, A. R.; Kress, M. E.

    2011-01-01

    The temperature profiles of micrometeors entering the atmospheres of Earth-like planets are calculated to determine the altitude at which exogenous organic compounds may be released. Previous experiments have shown that flash-heated micrometeorite analogs release organic compounds at temperatures from roughly 500 to 1000 K [1]. The altitude of release is of great importance because it determines the fate of the compound. Organic compounds that are released deeper in the atmosphere are more likely to rapidly mix to lower altitudes where they can accumulate to higher abundances or form more complex molecules and/or aerosols. Variables that are explored here are particle size, entry angle, atmospheric density profiles, spectral type of the parent star, and planet mass. The problem reduces to these questions: (1) How much atmosphere does the particle pass through by the time it is heated to 500 K? (2) Is the atmosphere above sufficient to attenuate stellar UV such that the mixing timescale is shorter than the photochemical timescale for a particular compound? We present preliminary results that the effect of the planetary and particle parameters have on the altitude of organic release.

  6. Simultaneous Precipitation of Solar Protons and Relativistic Electrons as a New Factor Affecting the Earth's Atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shirochkov, A. V.; Sokolov, S. N.

    In the field of solar - terrestrial physics during the last decade there has been renewed interest in the effects produced in the Earth atmosphere and ionosphere by fluxes of precipitated highly relativistic electrons. A series of investigation on the subject (preferably by means of satellite measurements) was performed recently, which discussed different aspects of these phenomena called HRE events. More careful study of the HRE events revealed previously unnoticed geophysical phenomenon: a great majority of the solar proton events (SPE) were accompanied by simultaneous precipitation of relativistic electron fluxes. The studies of previous SPE events attributed their atmospheric and ionospheric effects entirely to the solar proton fluxes. It turned out that such an assumption is wrong. Therefore we have actually a new class of geophysical phenomena when the Earth's atmosphere and ionosphere experience combined impact of simultaneously precipitating fluxes of solar protons and relativistic electrons. If one takes into accounts effect of enhanced density of the solar wind during the SPEs (i.e. its dynamic pressure) the real situation during these combined events became more complicated. In this paper the effects during the storm of May 1992 are analyzed as an example of such unusual combination. The methods of separation of the effects produced by different precipitation particles are presented. Other similar events are considered to demonstrate that such complex events are not unique geophysical phenomena.

  7. AFES (Atmospheric general circulation model For the Earth Simulator) simulation for Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sugimoto, Norihiko; Imamura, Takeshi; Takagi, Masahiro; Matsuda, Yoshihisa; Ando, Hiroki; Kashimura, Hiroki; Ohfuchi, Wataru; Enomoto, Takeshi; Takahashi, Yoshiyuki O.; Hayashi, Yoshi-Yuki

    We have developed an atmospheric general circulation model (AGCM) for Venus on the basis of AFES (AGCM For the Earth Simulator) and performed a very high-resolution simulation. The highest model resolution is T159L120; 0.75 degree times 0.75 degree latitude and longitude grids with 120 vertical layers (Δz is about 1 km). In the model, the atmosphere is dry and forced by the solar heating with the diurnal change and Newtonian cooling that relaxes the temperature to the zonally uniform basic temperature which has a virtual static stability of Venus with almost neutral layers. A fast zonal wind in a solid-body rotation is given as the initial state. In this paper, we will report several results newly obtained by this model. 1. Baroclinic instability appears in the cloud layer with small static stability and large vertical shear of the zonal flow. 2. Polar vortex is self-consistently generated by barotropic instability whose horizontal and vertical structure is consistent with the previous observations. 3. Kinetic energy spectra decreases by -5/3 power law in a range from wavenumber 4 to 45, whose range is different from that on Earth. Finally, we are now constructing the accurate radiation model of the Venus atmosphere.

  8. Rare earth element components in atmospheric particulates in the Bayan Obo mine region.

    PubMed

    Wang, Lingqing; Liang, Tao; Zhang, Qian; Li, Kexin

    2014-05-01

    The Bayan Obo mine, located in Inner Mongolia, China, is the largest light rare earth body ever found in the world. The research for rare earth elements (REEs) enrichment in atmospheric particulates caused by mining and ore processing is fairly limited so far. In this paper, atmospheric particulates including total suspended particulate (TSP) matter and particles with an equivalent aerodynamic diameter less than 10 μm (PM10) were collected around the Bayan Obo mine region, in August 2012 and March 2013, to analyze the levels and distributions of REEs in particles. The total concentrations of REEs for TSP were 149.8 and 239.6 ng/m(3), and those for PM10 were 42.8 and 68.9 ng/m(3), in August 2012 and March 2013, respectively. Enrichment factor was calculated for all 14 REEs in the TSP and PM10 and the results indicated that REEs enrichment in atmosphere particulates was caused by anthropogenic sources and influenced by the strong wind in springtime. The spatial distribution of REEs in TSP showed a strong gradient concentration in the prevailing wind direction. REE chondrite normalized patterns of TSP and PM10 were similar and the normalized curves inclined to the right side, showing the conspicuous fractionation between the light REEs and heavy REE, which supported by the chondrite normalized concentration ratios calculated for selected elements (La(N)/Yb(N), La(N)/Sm(N), Gd(N)/Yb(N)).

  9. Early stages in the evolution of the atmosphere and climate on the Earth-group planets

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Moroz, V. I.; Mukhin, L. M.

    1977-01-01

    The early evolution of the atmospheres and climate of the Earth, Mars and Venus is discussed, based on a concept of common initial conditions and main processes (besides known differences in chemical composition and outgassing rate). It is concluded that: (1) liquid water appeared on the surface of the earth in the first few hundred million years; the average surface temperature was near the melting point for about the first two eons; CO2 was the main component of the atmosphere in the first 100-500 million years; (2) much more temperate outgassing and low solar heating led to the much later appearance of liquid water on the Martian surface, only one to two billion years ago; the Martian era of rivers, relatively dense atmosphere and warm climate ended as a result of irreversible chemical bonding of CO2 by Urey equilibrium processes; (3) a great lack of water in the primordial material of Venus is proposed; liquid water never was present on the surface of the planet, and there was practically no chemical bonding of CO2; the surface temperature was over 600 K four billion years ago.

  10. The interaction of the cretaceous-tertiary extinction bolide with the atmosphere, ocean, and solid earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Okeefe, J. D.; Ahrens, T. J.

    1981-01-01

    A number of investigations, including those reported by Orth et al. (1981), have provided physical evidence for the impact of an extraterrestrial object on earth 65 million years ago. This time corresponds to the end of the cretaceous period. This impact could, therefore, be responsible for the observed extinction of biological species at the end of the Mesozoic era. Among the species becoming extinct are found also flying and walking dinosaurs, which include all land animals that had masses greater than 25 kg. The present investigation is concerned with a study of the possibilities for the collision of earth with 10 km-size object, and the consequences produced by such a collision. It is found that the penetration of the atmosphere by the bolide creates a temporary hole in the atmosphere. The resulting flow fields can inject melt droplets and finely commuted solid particles into the atmosphere. Short-term effects of heating, followed by dust induced worldwide cooling, may provide several mechanisms for the observed extinction of the species.

  11. Archean Earth Atmosphere Fractal Haze Aggregates: Light Scattering Calculations and the Faint Young Sun Paradox

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Boness, D. A.; Terrell-Martinez, B.

    2010-12-01

    As part of an ongoing undergraduate research project of light scattering calculations involving fractal carbonaceous soot aggregates relevant to current anthropogenic and natural sources in Earth's atmosphere, we have read with interest a recent paper [E.T. Wolf and O.B Toon,Science 328, 1266 (2010)] claiming that the Faint Young Sun paradox discussed four decades ago by Carl Sagan and others can be resolved without invoking heavy CO2 concentrations as a greenhouse gas warming the early Earth enough to sustain liquid water and hence allow the origin of life. Wolf and Toon report that a Titan-like Archean Earth haze, with a fractal haze aggregate nature due to nitrogen-methane photochemistry at high altitudes, should block enough UV light to protect the warming greenhouse gas NH3 while allowing enough visible light to reach the surface of the Earth. To test this hypothesis, we have employed a rigorous T-Matrix arbitrary-particle light scattering technique, to avoid the simplifications inherent in Mie-sphere scattering, on haze fractal aggregates at UV and visible wavelenths of incident light. We generate these model aggregates using diffusion-limited cluster aggregation (DLCA) algorithms, which much more closely fit actual haze fractal aggregates than do diffusion-limited aggregation (DLA) algorithms.

  12. Dust storms and their impact on ocean and human health: dust in Earth's atmosphere

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Griffin, Dale W.; Kellog, Christina A.

    2004-01-01

    Satellite imagery has greatly influenced our understanding of dust activity on a global scale. A number of different satellites such as NASA's Earth-Probe Total Ozone Mapping Spectrometer (TOMS) and Se-viewing Field-of-view Sensor (SeaWiFS) acquire daily global-scale data used to produce imagery for monitoring dust storm formation and movement. This global-scale imagery has documented the frequent transmission of dust storm-derived soils through Earth's atmosphere and the magnitude of many of these events. While various research projects have been undertaken to understand this normal planetary process, little has been done to address its impact on ocean and human health. This review will address the ability of dust storms to influence marine microbial population densities and transport of soil-associated toxins and pathogenic microorganisms to marine environments. The implications of dust on ocean and human health in this emerging scientific field will be discussed.

  13. The Afternoon Constellation: A Formation of Earth Observing Systems for the Atmosphere and Hydrosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schoeberl, Mark R.

    2002-01-01

    Two of the large EOS observatories, Aqua (formerly EOS-PM) and Aura (formerly EOS-CHEM) will fly is nearly the same inclination with 1:30 PM -15 min ascending node equatorial crossing times. Between Aura and Aqua a series of smaller satellites will be stationed: Cloudsat, CALYPSO (formerly PICASSO-CENA), and PARASOL. This constellation of low earth orbit satellites will provide an unprecedented opportunity to make near simultaneous atmospheric cloud and aerosol observations. This paper will provide details of the science opportunity and describe the sensor types for the afternoon constellation. This constellation by accretion provides a prototype for the Earth Science Vision sensor web and represent the building books for a future web structure.

  14. The Shuttle era - A challenge to the earth scientist. [observations of land, ocean and atmosphere phenomena

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Muehlberger, W. R.; Wilmarth, V. R.

    1977-01-01

    Satellite observations of large-scale earth features and phenomena, with either instruments or astronauts, are discussed on the basis of earlier experience (mainly Skylab). Off-nadir views and photographs by astronauts have provided valuable supplements to instrument nadir views, providing cross-checks through remote sensing at different angles, different altitudes, and in different seasons. New information on plate tectonics, global cooling/drying trends, global oceanographic data (changing positions of major ocean current patterns, evolution of warm and cold eddies and their relation to sea temperatures and concentrations of marine fauna, location of internal sea waves, interactions between ocean currents and atmosphere, plankton blooms), storm development, snow cover patterns, lake and sea ice growth, sand-dune patterns, desert storms blown out to sea, effects of grazing and swidden agriculture, and other earth features and phenomena are surveyed.

  15. Runaway and moist greenhouse atmospheres and the evolution of earth and Venus

    SciTech Connect

    Kasting, J.F.

    1988-06-01

    For the case of fully moisture-saturated and cloud-free conditions, the present one-dimensional climate model for the response of an earthlike atmosphere to large solar flux increases notes the critical solar flux at which runaway greenhouse (total evaporation of oceans) occurs to be 1.4 times the present flux at the earth's orbit, almost independently of the CO2 content of the atmophere. The value is, however, sensitive to the H2O absorption coefficient in the 8-12 micron window. Venus oceans may have been lost early on due to rapid water vapor photodissociation, followed by hydrogen escape into space. 42 references.

  16. The Due Innovators II Apollo Project: Monitoring Atmospheric Pollution with Earth Observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sellitto, P.; Del Frate, F.; Di Noia, A.; Sambucini, V.; Bojkov, B. R.

    2010-12-01

    In this paper we present the Innovators II - APOLLO (monitoring Atmospheric POLLution with earth Observation) project which has been carried out in the framework of the ESA Data User Element programme (http://www.esa.int/due). The projects aims at the development of an innovative service for the monitoring of the air quality from ground based measurements and by means of satellite data e.g. provided by the OMI mission. The core of the APOLLO project is the OMI-TOC NN (neural networks) algorithm.

  17. The Atmospheric Infrared Sounder on the Earth Observing System - In-orbit spectral calibration

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Aumann, H. H.

    1991-01-01

    The Atmospheric Infrared Sounder (AIRS) is a facility instrument on the Earth Observing System (EOS). The ability of AIRS to provide accurate temperature and moisture soundings with high vertical resolution depends critically on a very accurate spectral calibration. The routine in-orbit spectral calibration is accomplished with a Fabry-Perot plate with a fixed spacing of 360 microns. This paper discusses design, Signal-to-Noise, and temperature and alignment stability constraints which have to be met to achieve the required spectral calibration accuracy.

  18. Calculations of neutron flux spectra induced in the earth's atmosphere by galactic cosmic rays

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Armstrong, T. W.; Chandler, K. C.; Barish, J.

    1972-01-01

    Calculations have been carried out to determine the neutron flux induced in the earth's atmosphere by galactic protons and alpha particles at solar minimum for a geomagnetic latitude of 42 N. Neutron flux spectra were calculated using Monte Carlo and discrete ordinates methods, and various comparisons with experimental data are presented. The magnitude and shape of the calculated neutron-leakage spectrum at the particular latitude considered support the theory that the cosmic-ray-albedo-neutron-decay mechanism is the source of the protons and electrons trapped in the Van Allen belts.

  19. Runaway and moist greenhouse atmospheres and the evolution of earth and Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kasting, James F.

    1988-01-01

    For the case of fully moisture-saturated and cloud-free conditions, the present one-dimensional climate model for the response of an earthlike atmosphere to large solar flux increases notes the critical solar flux at which runaway greenhouse (total evaporation of oceans) occurs to be 1.4 times the present flux at the earth's orbit, almost independently of the CO2 content of the atmophere. The value is, however, sensitive to the H2O absorption coefficient in the 8-12 micron window. Venus oceans may have been lost early on due to rapid water vapor photodissociation, followed by hydrogen escape into space.

  20. The effects of atmospheric chemistry on radiation budget in the Community Earth Systems Model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Choi, Y.; Czader, B.; Diao, L.; Rodriguez, J.; Jeong, G.

    2013-12-01

    The Community Earth Systems Model (CESM)-Whole Atmosphere Community Climate Model (WACCM) simulations were performed to study the impact of atmospheric chemistry on the radiation budget over the surface within a weather prediction time scale. The secondary goal is to get a simplified and optimized chemistry module for the short time period. Three different chemistry modules were utilized to represent tropospheric and stratospheric chemistry, which differ in how their reactions and species are represented: (1) simplified tropospheric and stratospheric chemistry (approximately 30 species), (2) simplified tropospheric chemistry and comprehensive stratospheric chemistry from the Model of Ozone and Related Chemical Tracers, version 3 (MOZART-3, approximately 60 species), and (3) comprehensive tropospheric and stratospheric chemistry (MOZART-4, approximately 120 species). Our results indicate the different details in chemistry treatment from these model components affect the surface temperature and impact the radiation budget.

  1. Detecting Industrial Pollution in the Atmospheres of Earth-like Exoplanets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lin, Henry W.; Gonzalez Abad, Gonzalo; Loeb, Abraham

    2014-09-01

    Detecting biosignatures, such as molecular oxygen in combination with a reducing gas, in the atmospheres of transiting exoplanets has been a major focus in the search for alien life. We point out that in addition to these generic indicators, anthropogenic pollution could be used as a novel biosignature for intelligent life. To this end, we identify pollutants in the Earth's atmosphere that have significant absorption features in the spectral range covered by the James Webb Space Telescope. We focus on tetrafluoromethane (CF4) and trichlorofluoromethane (CCl3F), which are the easiest to detect chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) produced by anthropogenic activity. We estimate that ~1.2 days (~1.7 days) of total integration time will be sufficient to detect or constrain the concentration of CCl3F (CF4) to ~10 times the current terrestrial level.

  2. Waiting ages for atmospheric oxygen: A titration hourglass and the oxidation of the solid Earth. (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Catling, D. C.; Claire, M.; Zahnle, K. J.

    2013-12-01

    Atmospheric O2 increased from less than 1 ppm to 0.2-2% at 2.45-2.22 Ga in the Great Oxidation Event (GOE). A minority opinion is that the GOE happened close to the time when oxygenic photosynthesis originated but evidence from the concentration of redox-sensitive elements in shales and their isotopes, as well as the setting and morphology of stromatolites supports the consensus view that oxygenic photosynthesis had originated by 2.8-2.7 Ga. Models show that O2 can be consumed rapidly by reductants in the Archean so that the air can remain anoxic even after photosynthesis began pumping out O2. Why did the world ultimately shift away from this balance? What conditions were needed to oxygenate the atmosphere in addition to oxygenic photosynthesis? A general principle is that a shift to an oxic environment from a reducing one requires net export of reductant. In planetary science, for example, the oxidation of the surfaces and atmospheres of other planets or satellites is universally attributed to the escape of hydrogen to space. Hydrogen escape explains the redness of Mars, several characteristics of the atmosphere of Venus, and the presence of tenuous O2 atmospheres on Ganymede, Europa, Rhea and Dione. For the Earth's rise of oxygen, many ideas focus on a decline in mantle or seafloor reductant fluxes (driven by internal geologic evolution) to the point where these fluxes were surpassed by biogenic oxygen fluxes. But for such a shift (without a role for hydrogen escape), the surface still has to export net reductant to the mantle. Such net export depends on the ratio of subducted ferric iron versus reduced carbon during the Archean, which remains poorly constrained. Over a decade ago, we proposed that rapid escape of hydrogen to space from the pre-GOE atmosphere would have gradually oxidized the Earth's surface and crust, accompanied by falling levels of atmospheric CH4 [1]. The idea is that Earth underwent a redox titration. A point would be reached where O2 became

  3. DETECTING INDUSTRIAL POLLUTION IN THE ATMOSPHERES OF EARTH-LIKE EXOPLANETS

    SciTech Connect

    Lin, Henry W.; Abad, Gonzalo Gonzalez; Loeb, Abraham E-mail: ggonzalezabad@cfa.harvard.edu

    2014-09-01

    Detecting biosignatures, such as molecular oxygen in combination with a reducing gas, in the atmospheres of transiting exoplanets has been a major focus in the search for alien life. We point out that in addition to these generic indicators, anthropogenic pollution could be used as a novel biosignature for intelligent life. To this end, we identify pollutants in the Earth's atmosphere that have significant absorption features in the spectral range covered by the James Webb Space Telescope. We focus on tetrafluoromethane (CF{sub 4}) and trichlorofluoromethane (CCl{sub 3}F), which are the easiest to detect chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) produced by anthropogenic activity. We estimate that ∼1.2 days (∼1.7 days) of total integration time will be sufficient to detect or constrain the concentration of CCl{sub 3}F (CF{sub 4}) to ∼10 times the current terrestrial level.

  4. Calculations of neutron flux spectra induced in the earth's atmosphere by galactic cosmic rays.

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Armstrong, T. W.; Chandler, K. C.; Barish, J.

    1973-01-01

    Calculations have been carried out to determine the neutron flux induced in the earth's atmosphere by galactic protons and alpha particles at solar minimum for a geomagnetic latitude of 42 N. Neutron flux spectra in the energy range from about 10 to the minus 8th to about 100,000 MeV at various depths in the atmosphere were calculated by using Monte Carlo and discrete ordinates methods, and various comparisons with experimental data are presented. The magnitude and shape of the calculated neutron leakage spectrum at the particular latitude considered support the theory that the cosmic ray albedo neutron decay (Crand) mechanism is the source of the protons trapped in the inner radiation belt.

  5. Earth-atmosphere system and surface reflectivities in arid regions from LANDSAT multispectral scanner measurements

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Otterman, J.; Fraser, R. S.

    1976-01-01

    Programs for computing atmospheric transmission and scattering solar radiation were used to compute the ratios of the Earth-atmosphere system (space) directional reflectivities in the vertical direction to the surface reflectivity, for the four bands of the LANDSAT multispectral scanner (MSS). These ratios are presented as graphs for two water vapor levels, as a function of the surface reflectivity, for various sun elevation angles. Space directional reflectivities in the vertical direction are reported for selected arid regions in Asia, Africa and Central America from the spectral radiance levels measured by the LANDSAT MSS. From these space reflectivities, surface vertical reflectivities were computed applying the pertinent graphs. These surface reflectivities were used to estimate the surface albedo for the entire solar spectrum. The estimated albedos are in the range 0.34-0.52, higher than the values reported by most previous researchers from space measurements, but are consistent with laboratory measurements.

  6. Earth-Atmosphere Angular Momentum Exchange and ENSO: The Rotational Signature of the 1997-98 Event

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dickey, J.; Gegout, P.; Marcus, S.

    1999-01-01

    The impact of the 1997-1998 ENSO event is presented in context of Earth-atmosphere angular momentum exchange utilizing length of day (LOD), Southern Oscillation Index (SOI) and atmospheric angular momentum (AAM) data from 1970 to 1998; comparisons are made with previous events.

  7. The Role of Remote Sensing Displays in Earth Climate and Planetary Atmospheric Research

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    DelGenio, Anthony D.; Hansen, James E. (Technical Monitor)

    2001-01-01

    The communities of scientists who study the Earth's climate and the atmospheres of the other planets barely overlap, but the types of questions they pose and the resulting implications for the use and interpretation of remote sensing data sets have much in common. Both seek to determine the characteristic behavior of three-dimensional fluids that also evolve in time. Climate researchers want to know how and why the general patterns that define our climate today might be different in the next century. Planetary scientists try to understand why circulation patterns and clouds on Mars, Venus, or Jupiter are different from those on Earth. Both disciplines must aggregate large amounts of data covering long time periods and several altitudes to have a representative picture of the rapidly changing atmosphere they are studying. This emphasis separates climate scientists from weather forecasters, who focus at any one time on a limited number of images. Likewise, it separates planetary atmosphere researchers from planetary geologists, who rely primarily on single images (or mosaics of images covering the globe) to study two-dimensional planetary surfaces that are mostly static over the duration of a spacecraft mission yet reveal dynamic processes acting over thousands to millions of years. Remote sensing displays are usually two-dimensional projections that capture an atmosphere at an instant in time. How scientists manipulate and display such data, how they interpret what they see, and how they thereby understand the physical processes that cause what they see, are the challenges I discuss in this chapter. I begin by discussing differences in how novices and experts in the field relate displays of data to the real world. This leads to a discussion of the use and abuse of image enhancement and color in remote sensing displays. I then show some examples of techniques used by scientists in climate and planetary research to both convey information and design research

  8. Rare earth element components in atmospheric particulates in the Bayan Obo mine region

    SciTech Connect

    Wang, Lingqing Liang, Tao Zhang, Qian; Li, Kexin

    2014-05-01

    The Bayan Obo mine, located in Inner Mongolia, China, is the largest light rare earth body ever found in the world. The research for rare earth elements (REEs) enrichment in atmospheric particulates caused by mining and ore processing is fairly limited so far. In this paper, atmospheric particulates including total suspended particulate (TSP) matter and particles with an equivalent aerodynamic diameter less than 10 μm (PM{sub 10}) were collected around the Bayan Obo mine region, in August 2012 and March 2013, to analyze the levels and distributions of REEs in particles. The total concentrations of REEs for TSP were 149.8 and 239.6 ng/m{sup 3}, and those for PM{sub 10} were 42.8 and 68.9 ng/m{sup 3}, in August 2012 and March 2013, respectively. Enrichment factor was calculated for all 14 REEs in the TSP and PM{sub 10} and the results indicated that REEs enrichment in atmosphere particulates was caused by anthropogenic sources and influenced by the strong wind in springtime. The spatial distribution of REEs in TSP showed a strong gradient concentration in the prevailing wind direction. REE chondrite normalized patterns of TSP and PM{sub 10} were similar and the normalized curves inclined to the right side, showing the conspicuous fractionation between the light REEs and heavy REE, which supported by the chondrite normalized concentration ratios calculated for selected elements (La{sub N}/Yb{sub N}, La{sub N}/Sm{sub N}, Gd{sub N}/Yb{sub N}). - Highlights: • TSP and PM{sub 10} samples were collected to analyze the levels and distributions of REE. • Enrichment factors indicated that REE enrichment was caused by anthropogenic sources. • The distribution of REEs showed a strong gradient in the prevailing wind direction. • Obvious fractionation between LREEs and HREEs is observed in atmospheric particulates.

  9. SPITZER TRANSITS OF THE SUPER-EARTH GJ1214b AND IMPLICATIONS FOR ITS ATMOSPHERE

    SciTech Connect

    Fraine, Jonathan D.; Deming, Drake; Gillon, Michaeel; Jehin, Emmanueel; Demory, Brice-Olivier; Benneke, Bjoern; Seager, Sara; Lewis, Nikole K.; Knutson, Heather; Desert, Jean-Michel

    2013-03-10

    We observed the transiting super-Earth exoplanet GJ1214b using warm Spitzer at 4.5 {mu}m wavelength during a 20 day quasi-continuous sequence in 2011 May. The goals of our long observation were to accurately define the infrared transit radius of this nearby super-Earth, to search for the secondary eclipse, and to search for other transiting planets in the habitable zone of GJ1214. We here report results from the transit monitoring of GJ1214b, including a reanalysis of previous transit observations by Desert et al. In total, we analyze 14 transits of GJ1214b at 4.5 {mu}m, 3 transits at 3.6 {mu}m, and 7 new ground-based transits in the I+z band. Our new Spitzer data by themselves eliminate cloudless solar composition atmospheres for GJ1214b, and methane-rich models from Howe and Burrows. Using our new Spitzer measurements to anchor the observed transit radii of GJ1214b at long wavelengths, and adding new measurements in I+z, we evaluate models from Benneke and Seager and Howe and Burrows using a {chi}{sup 2} analysis. We find that the best-fit model exhibits an increase in transit radius at short wavelengths due to Rayleigh scattering. Pure water atmospheres are also possible. However, a flat line (no atmosphere detected) remains among the best of the statistically acceptable models, and better than pure water atmospheres. We explore the effect of systematic differences among results from different observational groups, and we find that the Howe and Burrows tholin-haze model remains the best fit, even when systematic differences among observers are considered.

  10. A mathematical model of the passage of an asteroid-comet body through the Earth's atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shaydurov, V.; Shchepanovskaya, G.; Yakubovich, M.

    2015-10-01

    In the paper, a mathematical model and a numerical algorithm are proposed for modeling the complex of phenomena which accompany the passage of a friable asteroid-comet body through the Earth's atmosphere: the material ablation, the dissociation of molecules, and the radiation. The proposed model is constructed on the basis of the Navier-Stokes equations for viscous heat-conducting gas with an additional equation for the motion and propagation of a friable lumpy-dust material in air. The energy equation is modified for the relation between two its kinds: the usual energy of the translation of molecules (which defines the temperature and pressure) and the combined energy of their rotation, oscillation, electronic excitation, dissociation, and radiation. For the mathematical model of atmosphere, the distribution of density, pressure, and temperature in height is taken as for the standard atmosphere. An asteroid-comet body is taken initially as a round body consisting of a friable lumpy-dust material with corresponding density and significant viscosity which far exceed those for the atmosphere gas. A numerical algorithm is proposed for solving the initial-boundary problem for the extended system of Navier-Stokes equations. The algorithm is the combination of the semi-Lagrangian approximation for Lagrange transport derivatives and the conforming finite element method for other terms. The implementation of these approaches is illustrated by a numerical example.

  11. Towards a new model of atmospheric tides: from Venus to super-Earths

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Auclair-Desrotour, Pierre; Laskar, Jacques; Mathis, Stéphane

    2015-12-01

    Tides can strongly affect the evolution of the spin of planets. Super-Earths presenting a solid core and an atmosphere are submitted to both gravitational tides caused by bodies’ mutual gravitational interactions and thermal tides resulting from stellar insolation. Thermal tides are particularly important for planets in the habitable zone where they drive the tidal response of the atmosphere (Correia & Laskar 2008). They play a key role for the equilibrium states of the spin, as in the case of Venus (Correia & Laskar 2004) and of exoplanets (e.g. the numerical simulations by Leconte & al. 2015). Given the complex mechanisms involved in thermal tides, analytic models are essential to understand the dependence of the perturbation on the physics on the atmosphere and the tidal frequency. The one proposed in the 60’s by Lindzen and Chapman explains well thermal tides in the asymptotic regime of fast rotators but presents a singularity near synchronization. We will present a new analytic approach that generalizes these early works to all regimes of tidal perturbations. This model describes the mechanisms of tidal waves generated in the atmosphere by both gravitational and thermal tides. The tidal torque is computed as a function of the frequency of the forcing and agrees very well with results obtained by direct numerical simulations using General Circulation Models.

  12. The Network for the Detection of Stratospheric Change: Tracking Changes in the Earth's Atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Peters, W.; Jacobson, A.; Miller, J. B.; Bruhwiler, L.; Hirsch, A.; Sweeney, C.; Petron, G.; Andrews, A.; Krol, M.; Tans, P.

    2005-05-01

    The NOAA ESRL carbon cycle group uses an ensemble data assimilation system to estimate multiple years of emissions and uptake (fluxes) of carbon dioxide at the Earth's surface. Thereto, atmospheric observations of carbon dioxide mixing ratios are assimilated in a weekly cycle, constraining five weeks of past surface fluxes. This five week smoother window is needed because the time between the release of carbon dioxide at the surface and downwind sampling of the resulting signal at our relatively sparse observation network (~100 per cycle) is determined by slow atmospheric mixing processes. The `observation operator' for our problem thus links surface flux variations to atmospheric mixing ratios, and is a full tracer transport model of the global atmosphere with nested grids to focus on regions of special interest. We optimize a set of linear parameters (~1000 per cycle) that control the behavior of simplified `flux modules'. These contain physical descriptions of surface exchange from the oceans, biosphere, fires, and fossil fuel burning. The optimal set of parameters estimated in the assimilation, combined with the flux modules, yields a high resolution multiyear reanalysis of surface exchange for scientific studies. In addition to showing results from our assimilations, we will discuss some particularities of our system such as the lack of an appropriate dynamical model, the impracticality of geographical localization, and the resulting need for many (>100) ensemble members.

  13. NOx in the Atmosphere of Early Earth as Electron Acceptors for Life

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wong, M. L.; Charnay, B.; Gao, P.; Yung, Y. L.; Russell, M. J.

    2015-12-01

    We quantify the amount of NOx produced in the Hadean atmosphere and available in the Hadean ocean for the emergence of life. Atmospherically generated nitrate (NO3-) and nitrite (NO2-) are the most attractive high-potential electron acceptors for driving the highly endergonic reactions at the entry points to autotrophic metabolic pathways at submarine alkaline hydrothermal vents (Ducluzeau, 2008; Russell, 2014). The Hadean atmosphere, dominated by CO2 and N2, will produce nitric oxide (NO) when shocked by lightning and impacts (Ducluzeau, 2008; Nna Mvondo, 2001). Photochemical reactions involving NO and H2O vapor will then produce acids such as HNO3 and HNO2 that rain into the ocean and dissociate into NO3- and NO2-. Previous work suggests that 1018 g of NOx can be produced in a million years or so, satisfying the need for micromolar concentrations of NO3- and NO2- in the ocean (Ducluzeau, 2008). But because this number is controversial, we present new calculations based on a novel combination of early-Earth GCM and photochemical modeling, calculating the sources and sinks for fixed nitrogen. Finally, it is notable that lightning has been detected on Venus and Mars along with evidence of atmospheric NO; in the distant past, could NOx have been created and available for the emergence of life on numerous wet, rocky worlds?

  14. MECA Workshop on Atmospheric H2O Observations of Earth and Mars. Physical Processes, Measurements and Interpretations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Clifford, Stephen M. (Editor); Haberle, Robert M. (Editor)

    1988-01-01

    The workshop was held to discuss a variety of questions related to the detection and cycling of atmospheric water. Among the questions addressed were: what factors govern the storage and exchange of water between planetary surfaces and atmospheres; what instruments are best suited for the measurement and mapping of atmospheric water; do regolith sources and sinks of water have uniquely identifiable column abundance signatures; what degree of time and spatial resolution in column abundance data is necessary to determine dynamic behavior. Of special importance is the question, does the understanding of how atmospheric water is cycled on Earth provide any insights for the interpretation of Mars atmospheric data.

  15. Entry-probe studies of the atmospheres of earth, Mars, and Venus - A review (Von Karman Lecture)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Seiff, Alvin

    1990-01-01

    This paper overviews the history (since 1963) of the exploration of planetary atmospheres by use of entry probes. The techniques used to measure the compositions of the atmospheres of the earth, Mars, and Venus are described together with the key results obtained. Attention is also given to the atmosphere-structure experiment aboard the Galileo Mission, launched on October 17, 1989 and now under way on its 6-yr trip to Jupiter, and to future experiments.

  16. [Study on the modeling of earth-atmosphere coupling over rugged scenes for hyperspectral remote sensing].

    PubMed

    Zhao, Hui-Jie; Jiang, Cheng; Jia, Guo-Rui

    2014-01-01

    Adjacency effects may introduce errors in the quantitative applications of hyperspectral remote sensing, of which the significant item is the earth-atmosphere coupling radiance. However, the surrounding relief and shadow induce strong changes in hyperspectral images acquired from rugged terrain, which is not accurate to describe the spectral characteristics. Furthermore, the radiative coupling process between the earth and the atmosphere is more complex over the rugged scenes. In order to meet the requirements of real-time processing in data simulation, an equivalent reflectance of background was developed by taking into account the topography and the geometry between surroundings and targets based on the radiative transfer process. The contributions of the coupling to the signal at sensor level were then evaluated. This approach was integrated to the sensor-level radiance simulation model and then validated through simulating a set of actual radiance data. The results show that the visual effect of simulated images is consistent with that of observed images. It was also shown that the spectral similarity is improved over rugged scenes. In addition, the model precision is maintained at the same level over flat scenes. PMID:24783559

  17. From Sub-Neptunes to Earth-like Exoplanets: Modeling Optically Thick and Thin Planetary Atmospheres

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Howard; Rogers, Leslie; Kasting, James

    2016-01-01

    Exoplanet surveys have revealed a wide diversity of planet properties in the Milky Way. Here, we present the results from two projects modeling planet atmospheres; one considering the hydrogen/helium envelopes of sub-Neptune-mass planets, and the other, the climate of Earth-like planets.First, we modify the state-of-the-art stellar evolution code Modules for Experimental Astrophysics (MESA) to model the thermal evolution of gaseous Sub-Neptune sized planets. Including photo-evaporation, we find a resulting convergent evolution trend that could potentially imprint itself on the close-in planet population as a preferred H/He mass fraction of 0.5-3%.We also use an updated version of a radiative-convective climate model to calculate the upper atmospheric conditions of planets warmer than the present Earth. In our simulations, cold, dry stratospheres are predicted at lower surface temperatures. However, onset of moist greenhouse water-loss limit to habitability emerges when the surface temperature reaches above 350 K. This result places constraint on a more accurate calculation of the inner edge of the habitable zone around Sun-like stars.

  18. [Study on the modeling of earth-atmosphere coupling over rugged scenes for hyperspectral remote sensing].

    PubMed

    Zhao, Hui-Jie; Jiang, Cheng; Jia, Guo-Rui

    2014-01-01

    Adjacency effects may introduce errors in the quantitative applications of hyperspectral remote sensing, of which the significant item is the earth-atmosphere coupling radiance. However, the surrounding relief and shadow induce strong changes in hyperspectral images acquired from rugged terrain, which is not accurate to describe the spectral characteristics. Furthermore, the radiative coupling process between the earth and the atmosphere is more complex over the rugged scenes. In order to meet the requirements of real-time processing in data simulation, an equivalent reflectance of background was developed by taking into account the topography and the geometry between surroundings and targets based on the radiative transfer process. The contributions of the coupling to the signal at sensor level were then evaluated. This approach was integrated to the sensor-level radiance simulation model and then validated through simulating a set of actual radiance data. The results show that the visual effect of simulated images is consistent with that of observed images. It was also shown that the spectral similarity is improved over rugged scenes. In addition, the model precision is maintained at the same level over flat scenes.

  19. Implications of solar irradiance variability upon long-term changes in the Earth's atmospheric temperatures

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lee, Robert B., III

    1992-01-01

    From 1979 through 1987, it is believed that variability in the incoming solar energy played a significant role in changing the Earth's climate. Using high-precision spacecraft radiometric measurements, the incoming total solar irradiance (total amount of solar power per unit area) and the Earth's mean, global atmospheric temperatures were found to vary in phase with each other. The observed irradiance and temperature changes appeared to be correlated with the 11-year cycle of solar magnetic activity. During the period from 1979 through 1985, both the irradiance and temperature decreased. From 1985 to 1987, they increased. The irradiance changed approximately 0.1 percent, while the temperature varied as much as 0.6 C. During the 1979-1987 period, the temperatures were forecasted to rise linearly because of the anthropogenic build-up of carbon dioxide and the hypothesized 'global warming', 'greenhouse effect', scenarios. Contrary to these scenarios, the temperatures were found to vary in a periodic manner in phase with the solar irradiance changes. The observed correlations between irradiance and temperature variabilily suggest that the mean, global temperature of the Earth may decline between 1990 and 1997 as solar magnetic activity decreases.

  20. Sun Earth Day 2007: Living in the Atmosphere of the Sun

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mayo, Louis

    2006-12-01

    The NASA Sun Earth Connection Education Forum (SECEF) is sponsoring Sun Earth Day 2007: Living in the Atmosphere of the Sun. This year’s theme supports the International Heliophysical Year goals of educating international populations on the sun-heliosphere system and the impact it has on the Earth and the solar system. For 2007, we will be featuring web and pod casts of the November 2006 Mercury Transit at Kitt Peak National Observatory as well as two panel discussions on space weather. In addition, we will be launching Space Weather Action Centers in the US giving students the ability to predict space weather from satellite and ground based observations and then to create and broadcast their own multimedia space weather forecasts over the web and “Rock and Sol”, an international arts program helping kids share the wonders of space science through song . Anticipated participation is well over 10 million people in 200 countries, and over 2,000 amateur astronomers. For more information on SED 2007, go to our web site at http://sunearthday.nasa.gov

  1. Study of strong interaction between atmosphere and solid Earth by using hurricane data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tanimoto, Toshiro

    2016-04-01

    The original energy of seismic noise is in the atmosphere although the most well-known seismic noise (microseism) gets excited through the ocean, i.e. the atmosphere (winds) excites ocean waves that in turn generate seismic noise in the solid earth. The oceans work as an intermediary in this case. But there is some seismic noise that is directly caused by the atmosphere-solid earth interactions. An extreme example for such a direct interaction can be found in the case of hurricanes (tropical cyclones) when they landfall and move on land. If we had such data, we could study the process of atmosphere-solid earth interactions directly. The Earthscope TA (Transportable Array) provided a few examples of such landfallen hurricanes which moved through the TA that had both seismometers and barometers. This data set allows us to study how ground motions changed as surface pressure (i.e., the source strength) varied over time. Because effects of surface pressure show up at short distances more clearly, we first examine the correlation between pressure and ground motion for the same stations. Plots of vertical ground velocity PSD (Power Spectral Density) vs. surface pressure PSD show that there are no significant ground motions unless pressure PSD becomes larger than 10 (Pa^2/s). Above this threshold, ground motion increases as P**1.69 (P is pressure and 1.69 is close to 5/3). Horizontal ground motions are larger than vertical ground motions (in seismic data), approximately by a factor of 10-30. But we note that the variations of horizontal motions with pressure show a linear relationship. Considering the instrumental design of TA stations, this is more likely due to the tilt of the whole recording system as (lateral) strong winds apply horizontal force on it. This linear trend exists for the whole range of the observed pressure PSD data, extending to small pressure values. We interpret that tilt signals overwhelmed other seismic signals in horizontal seismograms for

  2. The oxidation state of Hadean magmas and implications for early Earth's atmosphere.

    PubMed

    Trail, Dustin; Watson, E Bruce; Tailby, Nicholas D

    2011-11-30

    Magmatic outgassing of volatiles from Earth's interior probably played a critical part in determining the composition of the earliest atmosphere, more than 4,000 million years (Myr) ago. Given an elemental inventory of hydrogen, carbon, nitrogen, oxygen and sulphur, the identity of molecular species in gaseous volcanic emanations depends critically on the pressure (fugacity) of oxygen. Reduced melts having oxygen fugacities close to that defined by the iron-wüstite buffer would yield volatile species such as CH(4), H(2), H(2)S, NH(3) and CO, whereas melts close to the fayalite-magnetite-quartz buffer would be similar to present-day conditions and would be dominated by H(2)O, CO(2), SO(2) and N(2) (refs 1-4). Direct constraints on the oxidation state of terrestrial magmas before 3,850 Myr before present (that is, the Hadean eon) are tenuous because the rock record is sparse or absent. Samples from this earliest period of Earth's history are limited to igneous detrital zircons that pre-date the known rock record, with ages approaching ∼4,400 Myr (refs 5-8). Here we report a redox-sensitive calibration to determine the oxidation state of Hadean magmatic melts that is based on the incorporation of cerium into zircon crystals. We find that the melts have average oxygen fugacities that are consistent with an oxidation state defined by the fayalite-magnetite-quartz buffer, similar to present-day conditions. Moreover, selected Hadean zircons (having chemical characteristics consistent with crystallization specifically from mantle-derived melts) suggest oxygen fugacities similar to those of Archaean and present-day mantle-derived lavas as early as ∼4,350 Myr before present. These results suggest that outgassing of Earth's interior later than ∼200 Myr into the history of Solar System formation would not have resulted in a reducing atmosphere.

  3. The oxidation state of Hadean magmas and implications for early Earth's atmosphere.

    PubMed

    Trail, Dustin; Watson, E Bruce; Tailby, Nicholas D

    2011-12-01

    Magmatic outgassing of volatiles from Earth's interior probably played a critical part in determining the composition of the earliest atmosphere, more than 4,000 million years (Myr) ago. Given an elemental inventory of hydrogen, carbon, nitrogen, oxygen and sulphur, the identity of molecular species in gaseous volcanic emanations depends critically on the pressure (fugacity) of oxygen. Reduced melts having oxygen fugacities close to that defined by the iron-wüstite buffer would yield volatile species such as CH(4), H(2), H(2)S, NH(3) and CO, whereas melts close to the fayalite-magnetite-quartz buffer would be similar to present-day conditions and would be dominated by H(2)O, CO(2), SO(2) and N(2) (refs 1-4). Direct constraints on the oxidation state of terrestrial magmas before 3,850 Myr before present (that is, the Hadean eon) are tenuous because the rock record is sparse or absent. Samples from this earliest period of Earth's history are limited to igneous detrital zircons that pre-date the known rock record, with ages approaching ∼4,400 Myr (refs 5-8). Here we report a redox-sensitive calibration to determine the oxidation state of Hadean magmatic melts that is based on the incorporation of cerium into zircon crystals. We find that the melts have average oxygen fugacities that are consistent with an oxidation state defined by the fayalite-magnetite-quartz buffer, similar to present-day conditions. Moreover, selected Hadean zircons (having chemical characteristics consistent with crystallization specifically from mantle-derived melts) suggest oxygen fugacities similar to those of Archaean and present-day mantle-derived lavas as early as ∼4,350 Myr before present. These results suggest that outgassing of Earth's interior later than ∼200 Myr into the history of Solar System formation would not have resulted in a reducing atmosphere. PMID:22129728

  4. How large is the cosmic dust flux into the Earth's atmosphere?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Plane, John; Janches, Diego; Gomez-Martin, Juan Carlos; Bones, David; Diego Carrillo-Sanchez, Juan; James, Sandy; Nesvorny, David; Pokorny, Petr

    2016-07-01

    Cosmic dust particles are produced in the solar system from the sublimation of comets as they orbit close to the sun, and also from collisions between asteroids in the belt between Mars and Jupiter. Current estimates of the magnitude of the cosmic dust input rate into the Earth's atmosphere range from 2 to well over 100 tons per day, depending on whether the measurements are made in space, in the middle atmosphere, or at the surface in polar ice cores. This nearly 2 order-of-magnitude discrepancy indicates that there are serious flaws in the interpretation of observations that have been used to make the estimates. Dust particles enter the atmosphere at hyperthermal velocities (11 - 72 km s ^{-1}), and mostly ablate at heights between 80 and 120 km in a region of the atmosphere known as the mesosphere/lower thermosphere (MLT). The resulting metal vapours (Fe, Mg, Si and Na etc.) then oxidize and recondense to form nm-size particles, termed "meteoric smoke". These particles are too small to sediment downwards. Instead, they are transported by the general circulation of the atmosphere, taking roughly 5 years to reach the surface. There is great interest in the role smoke particles play as condensation nuclei of noctilucent ice clouds in the mesosphere, and polar stratospheric clouds in the lower stratosphere. Various new estimates of the dust input will be discussed. The first is from a zodiacal dust cloud model which predicts that more than 90% of the dust entering the atmosphere comes from Jupiter Family Comets; this model is constrained by observations of the zodiacal cloud using the IRAS, COBE and Planck satellites. The cometary dust is predicted to mostly be in a near-prograde orbit, entering the atmosphere with an average velocity around 14 km s ^{-1}. The total dust input should then be about 40 t d ^{-1}. However, relatively few of these particles are observed, even by the powerful Arecibo 430 MHz radar. Coupled models of meteoroid differential ablation

  5. Helium escape from the Earth's atmosphere - The charge exchange mechanism revisited

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lie-Svendsen, O.; Rees, M. H.; Stamnes, K.

    1992-01-01

    We have studied the escape of neutral helium from the terrestrial atmosphere through exothermic charge exchange reactions between He(+) ions and the major atmospheric constituents N2, O2 and O. Elastic collisions with the neutral background particles were treated quantitatively using a recently developed kinetic theory approach. An interhemispheric plasma transport model was employed to provide a global distribution of He(+) ions as a function of altitude, latitude and local solar time and for different levels of solar ionization. Combining these ion densities with neutral densities from an MSIS model and best estimates for the reaction rate coefficients of the charge exchange reactions, we computed the global distribution of the neutral He escape flux. The escape rates show large diurnal and latitudinal variations, while the global average does not vary by more than a factor of three over a solar cycle. We find that this escape mechanism is potentially important for the overall balance of helium in the Earth's atmosphere. However, more accurate values for the reaction rate coefficients of the charge exchange reactions are required to make a definitive assessment of its importance.

  6. CAM-chem: description and evaluation of interactive atmospheric chemistry in the Community Earth System Model

    SciTech Connect

    Lamarque, J.-F.; Emmons, L.; Hess, Peter; Kinnison, Douglas E.; Tilmes, S.; Vitt, Francis; Heald, C. L.; Holland, Elisabeth A.; Lauritzen, P. H.; Neu, J.; Orlando, J. J.; Rasch, Philip J.; Tyndall, G. S.

    2012-03-27

    We discuss and evaluate the representation of atmospheric chemistry in the global Community Atmosphere Model (CAM) version 4, the atmospheric component of the Community Earth System Model (CESM). We present a variety of configurations for the representation of tropospheric and stratospheric chemistry, wet removal, and online and offline meteorology. Results from simulations illustrating these configurations are compared with surface, aircraft and satellite observations. Major biases include a negative bias in the high-latitude CO distribution, a positive bias in upper-tropospheric/lower-stratospheric ozone, and a positive bias in summertime surface ozone (over the United States and Europe). The tropospheric net chemical ozone production varies significantly between configurations, partly related to variations in stratosphere-troposphere exchange. Aerosol optical depth tends to be underestimated over most regions, while comparison with aerosol surface measurements over the United States indicate reasonable results for sulfate, especially in the online simulation. Other aerosol species exhibit significant biases. Overall, the model-data comparison indicates that the offline simulation driven by GEOS5 meteorological analyses provides the best simulation, possibly due in part to the increased vertical resolution (52 levels instead of 26 for online dynamics). The CAM-chem code as described in this paper, along with all the necessary datasets needed to perform the simulations described here, are available for download at www.cesm.ucar.edu.

  7. Bidirectional Spectral Reflectance of Earth Resources: Influence of Scene Complexity and Atmospheric Effects on Remote Sensing

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Diner, D. J.

    1984-01-01

    Practical methods for remote sensing when scene complexity and atmospheric effects modify intrinsic reflective properties are developed. The radiation history from ground to space of light reflected from individual leaves is initially multiply scattered within the crop canopy, whose geometry provides a controlling influence, then scattered and attenuated as a result of transmission through the Earth's atmosphere. The experimental and theoretical tools for studying these effects quantitatively are under development. A new radiative transfer code which uses Fourier transforms to solve the 3-D equation of transfer was developed. The initial version permits inhomogeneous non-Lambertian surfaces but assumes horizontal uniformity for the atmosphere. The computational results are in excellent agreement with Monte Carlo calculations. Laboratory apparatus to study the variation of spectral reflectance of individual leaves as a function of illumination incidence angle and reflection angle was used. These data can then be used in models to determine canopy scattering effects. Stress tests by observing leaf reflectance at 0.9 microns as a function of time following clipping from the stem was performed. A reflectance increase due to loss of water has been observed.

  8. Development and test of the Atmospheric Infrared Sounder (AIRS) for the NASA Earth Observing System (EOS)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Morse, Paul G.; Bates, Jerry C.; Miller, Christopher R.; Chahine, Moustafa T.; O'Callaghan, Fred; Aumann, Hartmut H.; Karnik, Avinash R.

    1999-12-01

    The Atmospheric Infrared Sounder (AIRS) has been developed for the NASA Earth Observing System (EOS) program for a scheduled launch on the EOS PM-1 spacecraft in December 2000. AIRS, working in concert with complementary microwave instrumentation on EOS PM-1, is designed to provide both new and more accurate data about the atmosphere, land and oceans for application to climate studies and weather prediction. Among the important parameters to be derived from AIRS observations are atmospheric temperature profiles with an average accuracy of 1 K in 1 kilometer (km) layers in the troposphere, humidity profiles to 10% accuracy and surface temperatures with an average accuracy of 0.5 K. The AIRS measurement technique is based on passive IR remote sensing using a precisely calibrated grating spectrometer operating in the 3.7 - 15.4 micrometer region. The instrument concept uses a passively cooled array spectrometer approach in combination with advanced state of the art focal plan and cryogenic refrigerator technology to achieve high performance in a practical long life configuration. The AIRS instrument has successfully completed a comprehensive performance verification program conducted at the Lockheed Martin IR Imaging Systems (LMIRIS) AIRS Test and Calibration Facility (ATCF), which was specially designed for precise spectroradiometric testing of space instrumentation. This paper provides a brief overview of the AIRS mission and instrument design, ATCF test capabilities, along with key results.

  9. Formation of nitrogen oxides in the Earth's atmosphere by solar proton flares

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Komitov, B.; Dechev, M.; Duchlev, P.

    2016-01-01

    The results from the study of daily average values of the background concentrations of nitrogen oxides (NO and NO_{2}) in the terrestrial atmosphere are presented. The study aim was to reveal some aspects of the relation between the solar flares, as sources of solar energetic protons (SEP-Solar Energetic Protons), and the nitrogen oxides formation in the Earth's atmosphere. For this aim, except the time series of the nitrogen oxides for the period Oct 15, 2004 - Sept 1, 2009, the total daily fluxes of the solar protons for the energy diapasons E ≥ 10 MeV and E ≥ 100 MeV, registered by GOES-11 and GOES-13 satellites, were used.The obtained results suggest that the significant peaks in the time series of the nitrogen oxides should be explained with 'volley' effect of NO and NO_{2} formations in the middle atmosphere. Such formation processes take place in the time interval from one month to about one year before the peaks registration at the ground-level station of the Rozhen National Astronomical Observatory. In view of the short period with continuous time series, to give a certain answer of the question whether and how the solar protons affect the NO and NO_{2} formation it is necessary to prolong the study in future.

  10. The atmosphere of the primitive earth and the prebiotic synthesis of organic compounds

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Miller, S. L.; Schlesinger, G.

    1983-01-01

    The prebiotic synthesis of organic compounds is investigated using a spark discharge on various simulated prebiotic atmospheres at 25 C. It is found that glycine is almost the only amino acid produced from the model atmospheres containing CO and CO2. These results show that the maximum yield is about the same for the three carbon sources (CO, CO2, and CH4) at high H2/carbon ratios, but that CH4 is superior at low H2/carbon ratios. CH4 is found to yield a much greater variety of amino acids than either CO or CO2. If it is assumed that amino acids more complex than glycine were required for the origin of life, then these findings indicate the need for CH4 in the primitive atmosphere. The yields of cyanide and formaldehyde are shown to parallel the amino acid results, with yields of HCN and H2CO as high as 13 percent based on carbon. Ammonia is also found to be produced from N2 in experiments with no added NH3 in yields as high as 4.9 percent. These results indicate that large amounts of NH3 would have been synthesized on the primitive earth by electric discharges.

  11. Response of the water level in a well to Earth tides and atmospheric loading under unconfined conditions

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rojstaczer, S.; Riley, F.S.

    1990-01-01

    The response to Earth tides is strongly governed by a dimensionless aquifer frequency Q???u. The response to atmospheric loading is strongly governed by two dimensionless vertical fluid flow parameters: a dimensionless unsaturated zone frequency, R, and a dimensionless aquifer frequency Qu. The differences between Q???u and Qu are generally small for aquifers which are highly sensitive to Earth tides. When Q???u and Qu are large, the response of the well to Earth tides and atmospheric loading approaches the static response of the aquifer under confined conditions. At small values of Q???u and Qu, well response to Earth tides and atmospheric loading is strongly influenced by water table drainage. When R is large relative to Qu, the response to atmospheric loading is strongly influenced by attenuation and phase shift of the pneumatic pressure signal in the unsaturated zone. The presence of partial penetration retards phase advance in well response to Earth tides and atmospheric loading. -from Authors

  12. Causes and Implications of Persistent Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide Biases in Earth System Models

    SciTech Connect

    Hoffman, Forrest M; Randerson, James T.; Arora, Vivek K.; Bao, Qing; Cadule, Patricia; Ji, Duoying; Jones, Chris D.; Kawamiya, Michio; Khatiwala, Samar; Lindsay, Keith; Obata, Atsushi; Shevliakova, Elena; Six, Katharina D.; Tjiputra, Jerry F.; Volodin, Evgeny M.; Wu, Tongwen

    2014-01-01

    The strength of feedbacks between a changing climate and future CO2 concentrations are uncertain and difficult to predict using Earth System Models (ESMs). We analyzed emission-driven simulations--in which atmospheric CO2 levels were computed prognostically--for historical (1850-2005) and future periods (RCP 8.5 for 2006-2100) produced by 15 ESMs for the Fifth Phase of the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project (CMIP5). Comparison of ESM prognostic atmospheric CO2 over the historical period with observations indicated that ESMs, on average, had a small positive bias in predictions of contemporary atmospheric CO2. Weak ocean carbon uptake in many ESMs contributed to this bias, based on comparisons with observations of ocean and atmospheric anthropogenic carbon inventories. We found a significant linear relationship between contemporary atmospheric CO2 biases and future CO2 levels for the multi-model ensemble. We used this relationship to create a contemporary CO2 tuned model (CCTM) estimate of the atmospheric CO2 trajectory for the 21st century. The CCTM yielded CO2 estimates of 600 {plus minus} 14 ppm at 2060 and 947 {plus minus} 35 ppm at 2100, which were 21 ppm and 32 ppm below the multi-model mean during these two time periods. Using this emergent constraint approach, the likely ranges of future atmospheric CO2, CO2-induced radiative forcing, and CO2-induced temperature increases for the RCP 8.5 scenario were considerably narrowed compared to estimates from the full ESM ensemble. Our analysis provided evidence that much of the model-to-model variation in projected CO2 during the 21st century was tied to biases that existed during the observational era, and that model differences in the representation of concentration-carbon feedbacks and other slowly changing carbon cycle processes appear to be the primary driver of this variability. By improving models to more closely match the long-term time series of CO2 from Mauna Loa, our analysis suggests uncertainties in

  13. Earthshine Polarimetry to Extract Signatures of Earth-like Atmosphere and Surface

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Takahashi, J.; Itoh, Y.; Akitaya, H.; Okazaki, A.; Kawabata, K.; Oasa, Y.; Isogai, M.; Niwa, T.

    2013-12-01

    to find a signature pointing toward a distinctive characteristic of the Earth. The observations were conducted on March 9-13, 2011 (UT). We utilized the spectropolarimeter HBS mounted on the 1.88 m telescope at the Okayama Astrophysical Observatory located in Okayama, Japan. The wavelength coverage is 450-850 nm with a resolution of 6 nm. The observed Earthshine polarization degree spectra decreased with increasing wavelength at any phase. We have found that the phase dependence differed with the wavelengths; the maximum polarization for the V band wavelengths occurred at a phase angle of near 90°, whereas that for longer wavelengths is reached at larger phase angles. This is interpreted as indicating that Earthshine polarization at shorter wavelengths is dominated by atmospheric Rayleigh scattering, whereas that at longer wavelengths has an increasingly effective contribution from the Earth surface reflection. The observed wavelength dependence in the phase angles of the maximum polarization for the Earth is suggested to be different from the other terrestrial planetary objects in the Solar System. Therefore our observational result might be a signature pointing toward a distinctive characteristic of the Earth: the atmosphere is scattering in the shorter wavelengths but transparent in the longer wavelengths.

  14. Average capacity for PCB propagation in atmospheric turbulence on Earth-space path

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Rui-ke; Hou, Jie; Chen, Yuan; Chen, Hui

    2013-08-01

    In order to analyze the effect of atmospheric turbulence along Earth-space path on the performance of laser communication system, the change of Kolmogorov spectrum with altitude is taken into account on the basis of the relation of turbulence structure constant with altitude. The scintillation index under the condition of the different coherent degree for optical source are discussed from weak to strong turbulence regime for a partially coherent Gaussian beam (PCB) propagating through turbulent atmosphere. The relation of the scintillation index with elevation is analyzed on Earth-space path. The expressions for the Log-normal and the Gamma-Gamma turbulence channel of irradiance fluctuations are given. The mathematical expression for the evaluation of the average capacity is shown for a Kolmogorov turbulent atmosphere channel. The average capacity of a PCB is calculated under the condition of different coherent length, aperture, on the horizontal and Earth-space path, respectively. The results of scintillation index show that the difference among plane, spherical, and beam wave are obvious from weak to moderate turbulence regime, at strong regime, the results tend to saturation. The degradation of optical source coherence causes scintillation depression at weak turbulence regime. At moderate regime, the scintillation is little increase. The effect of source partially coherence on scintillation is disappear at stronger regime. Based on the Log-normal model in weak turbulent fade channel and the Gamma-Gamma model from weak to strong turbulence fade channel, the average capacities for different initial Gaussian beam radius, partially coherent degree beam are estimated, respectively. The results show that at weak turbulence, the difference between the capacities by Log-normal and Gamma-Gamma distribution is small, and from moderate to strong regime, the difference is gradually increase. At weak regime, the average capacity of partially coherent beam is greater than the

  15. 13C18O in Earth's Atmosphere: a New Proxy for Constraining CO Budget

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guo, W.; Eiler, J. M.

    2005-12-01

    of temperature of heating and follow the trend predicted by previous thermodynamic calculations[1]. These results may be relevant for combustion and anthropogenic CO sources. Future measurements aim to determine the Δ13C18O signals characteristic of other sources and sinks. We predict that: mixing between CO of different isotopic compositions will generate ~0.1‰ enrichments in atmospheric Δ13C18O; gaseous diffusion will enrich the ``diffused'' population by up to ~1.1‰ relative to the residual gas; CO produced from high temperature processes (e.g. biomass and fuel burning) will have a relatively low Δ13C18O (e.g.~0.1‰ for 700°C); the Δ13C18O value of CO derived from oxidation of methane and NMHCs is suspected to be positive, but with a magnitude that is hard to predict at present; and reaction of CO with OH (the dominant atmospheric sink of CO), would produce Δ13C18O depletions in residual CO on the order of per mil to tens of per mil. Because CO doesn't undergo isotopic exchange with water at earth surface conditions, we expect these signatures to be preserved in the atmosphere and serve as an additional constraint on atmospheric CO budget. References [1]Wang, Schauble et al. (2004) GCA 68,4779-4797

  16. A High Performance Computing approach to model multiple Rayleigh scattering in the Earth atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Franssens, Ghislain; Dekemper, Emmanuel; Mateshivili, Nina; Vanhellemont, filip; fussen, didier; pieroux, didier

    2016-04-01

    The retrieval of atmospheric trace gases and aerosols in the Earth atmosphere from light scattering measurements typically involves an iterative inversion algorithm. A key part of this algorithm is its forward model, which takes care of calculating the amount of light that the remote sensing instrument will see, for any assumed atmosphere composition. The forward model is usually an atmospheric radiative transfer code. It is a serious challenge for a radiative transfer code to be, at the same time, sufficiently accurate and sufficiently fast, so that it can be included in the iterative retrieval loop of an operational service. An accurate code must be able to calculate multiple Rayleigh scattering (important in the UV and/or at lower altitudes) by the air in a spherical atmosphere. This is something that currently only a Monte Carlo algorithm can do. However, any Monte Carlo code is far too slow to be included in the retrieval loop, even if we make use of the currently available HPC power. We report some first results that were obtained by a new solution to this old problem. We first use a HPC cluster to tabulate multiple Rayleigh scattering in a standard Earth atmosphere, using a Monte Carlo code, as function of 6 parameters (albedo, view zenith angle, solar zenith angle, relative azimuth angle, altitude and wavelength). Then, a well chosen empirical function is fitted on the tabulated data. From this function, correction factors are derived and appropriately inserted in a fast single scattering algorithm, which so effectively becomes a multiple scattering algorithm. Since the evaluation of the empirical function is also very fast, we end up with a radiative transfer code that is both accurate and sufficiently fast for operational data production. Our conclusion is that commonly available and affordable HPC systems can still not directly solve the retrieval problem with sufficient accuracy in real time. However, the above described two step approach now becomes

  17. Radiative transfer in the earth's atmosphere and ocean: influence of ocean waves.

    PubMed

    Plass, G N; Kattawar, G W; Guinn, J A

    1975-08-01

    The radiance in the earth's atmosphere and ocean is calculated for a realistic model including an ocean surface with waves. Individual photons are followed in a Monte Carlo calculation. In the atmosphere, both Rayleigh scattering by the molecules and Mie scattering by the aerosols as well as molecular and aerosol absorption are taken into account. Similarly, in the ocean, both Rayleigh scattering by the water molecules and Mie scattering by the hydrosols as well as absorption by the water molecules and hydrosols are considered. Separate single-scattering functions are used which are calculated separately for the aerosols and the hydrosols from the Mie theory with appropriate and different size distributions in each case. The scattering angles are determined from the appropriate scattering function including the strong forwardscattering peak when there is aerosol or hydrosol scattering. Both the reflected and refracted rays, as well as the rays that undergo total internal reflection, are followed at the oceanc surface. The wave slope is chosen from the Cox-Munk distribution. Graphs show the influence of the waves on the upward radiance at the top of the atmosphere and just above the ocean surface and on the downward radiance just below the ocean surface as well as deeper within the ocean. The radiance changes are sufficient at the top of the atmosphere to determine the sea state from satellite measurements. Within the ocean the waves smooth out the abrupt transition that occurs at the edge of the allowed cone for radiation entering a calm ocean. The influence of the waves on the contrast between the sky and sea at the horizon is discussed. It is shown that the downward flux just below the surface increases with wind speed at all solar angles.

  18. Carbon Observations from Geostationary Earth Orbit as Part of an Integrated Observing System for Atmospheric Composition

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Edwards, D. P.

    2015-12-01

    This presentation describes proposed satellite carbon measurements from the CHRONOS mission. The primary goal of this experiment is to measure the atmospheric pollutants carbon monoxide (CO) and methane (CH4) from geostationary orbit, with hourly observations of North America at high spatial resolution. CHRONOS observations would provide measurements not currently available or planned as part of a surface, suborbital and satellite integrated observing system for atmospheric composition over North America. Carbon monoxide is produced by combustion processes such as urban activity and wildfires, and serves as a proxy for other combustion pollutants that are not easily measured. Methane has diverse anthropogenic sources ranging from fossil fuel production, animal husbandry, agriculture and waste management. The impact of gas exploration in the Western States of the USA and oil extraction from the Canadian tar sands will be particular foci of the mission, as will the poorly-quantified natural CH4 emissions from wetlands and thawing permafrost. In addition to characterizing pollutant sources, improved understanding of the domestic CH4 budget is a priority for policy decisions related to short-lived climate forcers. A primary motivation for targeting CO is its value as a tracer of atmospheric pollution, and CHRONOS measurements will provide insight into local and long-range transport across the North American continent, as well as the processes governing the entrainment and venting of pollution in and out of the planetary boundary layer. As a result of significantly improved characterization of diurnal changes in atmospheric composition, CHRONOS observations will find direct societal applications for air quality regulation and forecasting. We present a quantification of this expected improvement in the prediction of near-surface concentrations when CHRONOS measurements are used in Observation System Simulation Experiments (OSSEs). If CHRONOS and the planned NASA Earth

  19. Atmospheric Torques on the Solid Earth and Oceans Based on the GEOS-1 General Circulation Model

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sanchez, Braulio V.; Au, Andrew Y.

    1998-01-01

    The GEOS-1 general circulation model has been used to compute atmospheric torques on the oceans and solid Earth for the period 1980-1995. The time series for the various torque components have been analyzed by means of Fourier transform techniques. It was determined that the wind stress torque over land is more powerful than the wind stress torque over water by 55%, 42%, and 80% for the x, y, and z components respectively. This is mainly the result of power in the high frequency range. The pressure torques due to polar flattening, equatorial ellipticity, marine geoid, and continental orography were computed. The orographic or "mountain torque" components are more powerful than their wind stress counterparts (land plus ocean) by 231% (x), 191% (y), and 77% (z). The marine pressure torques due to geoidal undulations are much smaller than the orographic ones, as expected. They are only 3% (x), 4% (y), and 5% (z) of the corresponding mountain torques. The geoidal pressure torques are approximately equal in magnitude to those produced by the equatorial ellipticity of the Earth. The pressure torque due to polar flattening makes the largest contributions to the atmospheric torque budget. It has no zonal component, only equatorial ones. Most of the power of the latter, between 68% and 69%, is found in modes with periods under 15 days. The single most powerful mode has a period of 361 days. The gravitational torque ranks second in power only to the polar flattening pressure torque. Unlike the former, it does produce a zonal component, albeit much smaller (1%) than the equatorial ones. The gravitational and pressure torques have opposite signs, therefore, the gravitational torque nullifies 42% of the total pressure torque. Zonally, however, the gravitational torque amounts to only 6% of the total pressure torque. The power budget for the total atmospheric torque yields 7595 and 7120 Hadleys for the equatorial components and 966 Hadleys for the zonal. The x-component exhibits

  20. The Atmospheres of the Terrestrial Planets:Clues to the Origins and Early Evolution of Venus, Earth, and Mars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Baines, Kevin H.; Atreya, Sushil K.; Bullock, Mark A.; Grinspoon, David H,; Mahaffy, Paul; Russell, Christopher T.; Schubert, Gerald; Zahnle, Kevin

    2015-01-01

    We review the current state of knowledge of the origin and early evolution of the three largest terrestrial planets - Venus, Earth, and Mars - setting the stage for the chapters on comparative climatological processes to follow. We summarize current models of planetary formation, as revealed by studies of solid materials from Earth and meteorites from Mars. For Venus, we emphasize the known differences and similarities in planetary bulk properties and composition with Earth and Mars, focusing on key properties indicative of planetary formation and early evolution, particularly of the atmospheres of all three planets. We review the need for future in situ measurements for improving our understanding of the origin and evolution of the atmospheres of our planetary neighbors and Earth, and suggest the accuracies required of such new in situ data. Finally, we discuss the role new measurements of Mars and Venus have in understanding the state and evolution of planets found in the habitable zones of other stars.

  1. Excitation of earth's polar motion by atmospheric angular momentum variations, 1980-1990

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chao, Benjamin F.

    1993-01-01

    We compute the polar-motion excitation function due to the atmospheric angular momentum (AAM) for both IB (inverted-barometer) and non-IB cases, as well as the excitation function from geodetically observed Earth orientation data for the period 1980-1990. The two are then compared in studying the AAM contribution to the polar motion excitation. The polar drifts with periods longer than about two years have similar characteristics, but the comparison is inconclusive because of data uncertainties. For the seasonal wobble excitation, the agreement is poor except for the prograde annual wobble, indicating the influence of other geophysical excitations than AAM. For the Chandler wobble excitation, a correlation coefficient of 0.53 for non-IB and 0.58 for IB are found for 1986-1990. Together with a coherence spectral analysis, they clearly demonstrate a strong contribution of AAM to the Chandler wobble excitation.

  2. Terrestrial microorganisms at an altitude of 20,000 m in Earth's atmosphere

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Griffin, Dale W.

    2004-01-01

    A joint effort between the U.S. Geological Survey's (USGS) Global Desert Dust and NASA's Stratospheric and Cosmic Dust Programs identified culturable microbes from an air sample collected at an altitude of 20,000 m. A total of 4 fungal (Penicillium sp.) and 71 bacteria colonyforming units (70 colonies of Bacillus luciferensis believed to have originated from a single cell collected at altitude and one colony of Bacillus sphaericus) were enumerated, isolated and identified using a morphological key and 16S rDNA sequencing respectively. All of the isolates identified were sporeforming pigmented fungi or bacteria of terrestrial origin and demonstrate that the presence of viable microorganisms in Earth's upper atmosphere may not be uncommon.

  3. A New Code SORD for Simulation of Polarized Light Scattering in the Earth Atmosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Korkin, Sergey; Lyapustin, Alexei; Sinyuk, Aliaksandr; Holben, Brent

    2016-01-01

    We report a new publicly available radiative transfer (RT) code for numerical simulation of polarized light scattering in plane-parallel atmosphere of the Earth. Using 44 benchmark tests, we prove high accuracy of the new RT code, SORD (Successive ORDers of scattering). We describe capabilities of SORD and show run time for each test on two different machines. At present, SORD is supposed to work as part of the Aerosol Robotic NETwork (AERONET) inversion algorithm. For natural integration with the AERONET software, SORD is coded in Fortran 90/95. The code is available by email request from the corresponding (first) author or from ftp://climate1.gsfc.nasa.gov/skorkin/SORD/.

  4. Connection of the Earth's Rotation with the Atmospheric Angular Momentum and the Strongest Earthquakes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zharov, V. E.

    Quick changes of the effective atmospheric angular momentum (AAM) functions are compared with the occurence of the strong earthquakes (with a body-wave magnitude mb 6.0) and quick changes of the Earth's rotation parameters (ERP). A strong correlation exists between these changes of the AAM functions and the times of earthquakes. The quick variations of the length-of-day (LOD) (up to 0.2 msec) are induced by the variations of the axial component of the AAM functions and strongly correlate with the times of earthquakes too. Delta-like changes of the equatorial components of the AAM functions correlate with the times of earthquakes and do not correlate with quick variations of polar motion. Common periodicities exist both in the AAM functions and earthquake series.

  5. A new code SORD for simulation of polarized light scattering in the Earth atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Korkin, Sergey; Lyapustin, Alexei; Sinyuk, Aliaksandr; Holben, Brent

    2016-05-01

    We report a new publicly available radiative transfer (RT) code for numerical simulation of polarized light scattering in plane-parallel Earth atmosphere. Using 44 benchmark tests, we prove high accuracy of the new RT code, SORD (Successive ORDers of scattering1, 2). We describe capabilities of SORD and show run time for each test on two different machines. At present, SORD is supposed to work as part of the Aerosol Robotic NETwork3 (AERONET) inversion algorithm. For natural integration with the AERONET software, SORD is coded in Fortran 90/95. The code is available by email request from the corresponding (first) author or from ftp://climate1.gsfc.nasa.gov/skorkin/SORD/ or ftp://maiac.gsfc.nasa.gov/pub/SORD.zip

  6. Ammonia photolysis and the greenhouse effect in the primordial atmosphere of the earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kuhn, W. R.; Atreya, S. K.

    1979-01-01

    Photochemical calculations indicate that in the prebiotic atmosphere of earth ammonia would have been irreversibly converted to N2 in less than 40 years if the ammonia surface mixing ratio were no more than 0.0001. However, if a continuous outgassing of ammonia were maintained, radiative-equilibrium calculations indicate that a surface mixing ratio of ammonia of 0.0001 or greater would provide a sufficient greenhouse effect to keep the surface temperature above freezing. With a 0.0001 mixing ratio of ammonia, 60% to 70% of the present-day solar luminosity would be adequate to maintain surface temperatures above freezing. A lower limit to the time constant for accumulation of an amount of nitrogen equivalent to the present day value is 10 my if the outgassing were such as to provide a continuous surface mixing ratio of ammonia of at least 0.00001.

  7. Polarisation of the auroral red line in the Earth's upper atmosphere: a review (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lamy, H.; Barthelemy, M.; Lilensten, J.; Bommier, V.; Simon Wedlund, C.

    2013-12-01

    Polarisation of light is a key observable to provide information about asymmetry or anisotropy within a radiative source. Polarimetry of auroral emission lines in the Earth's upper atmosphere has been overlooked for decades. However, the bright red auroral line (6300Å) produced by collisional impact with electrons precipitating along magnetic field lines is a good candidate to search for polarisation. This problem was investigated recently with observations obtained by Lilensten et al (2008), Barthélemy et al (2011) and Lilensten et al (2013) with a photopolarimeter. Analysis of the data indicates that the red auroral emission line is polarised at a level of a few percent. The results are compared to theoretical predictions of Bommier et al (2011) that were obtained for a collimated beam. The comparison suggests the existence of depolarization processes whose origin will be discussed. A new dedicated spectropolarimeter currently under development will also be presented. This instrument will cover the optical spectrum from approximately 400 to 700 nm providing simultaneously the polarisation of the red line and of other interesting auroral emission lines such as N2+ 1NG (4278Å), other N2 bands, etc... The importance of these polarisation measurements in the context of upper atmosphere modelling and geomagnetic activity will be discussed. Lilensten, J. et al, Polarization in aurorae: A new dimension for space environments studies, Geophys. Res. Lett., 26, 269, 2008 Barthélemy M. et al, Polarisation in the auroral red line during coordinated EISCAT Svalbard Radar/optical experiments, Annales Geophysicae, Volume 29, Issue 6, 2011, 1101-1112, 2011. Bommier V. et al, The Theoretical Impact Polarization of the O I 6300 Å Red Line of Earth Auroræ, Annales Geophysicae, Volume 29, Issue 1, 2011, 71-79, 2011 Lilensten, J. et al, The thermospheric auroral red line polarization: confirmation of detection and first quantitative analysis, Journal of Space Weather and Space

  8. Rapid oxygenation of Earth's atmosphere 2.33 billion years ago.

    PubMed

    Luo, Genming; Ono, Shuhei; Beukes, Nicolas J; Wang, David T; Xie, Shucheng; Summons, Roger E

    2016-05-01

    Molecular oxygen (O2) is, and has been, a primary driver of biological evolution and shapes the contemporary landscape of Earth's biogeochemical cycles. Although "whiffs" of oxygen have been documented in the Archean atmosphere, substantial O2 did not accumulate irreversibly until the Early Paleoproterozoic, during what has been termed the Great Oxygenation Event (GOE). The timing of the GOE and the rate at which this oxygenation took place have been poorly constrained until now. We report the transition (that is, from being mass-independent to becoming mass-dependent) in multiple sulfur isotope signals of diagenetic pyrite in a continuous sedimentary sequence in three coeval drill cores in the Transvaal Supergroup, South Africa. These data precisely constrain the GOE to 2.33 billion years ago. The new data suggest that the oxygenation occurred rapidly-within 1 to 10 million years-and was followed by a slower rise in the ocean sulfate inventory. Our data indicate that a climate perturbation predated the GOE, whereas the relationships among GOE, "Snowball Earth" glaciation, and biogeochemical cycling will require further stratigraphic correlation supported with precise chronologies and paleolatitude reconstructions.

  9. Thermal Infrared Spectroscopy of Atmospheric Species Critical to Radiative Forcing of Earth's Climate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brasunas, J. C., Jr.; Kostiuk, T.; Livengood, T. A.; Hewagama, T.; Kolasinski, J. R.

    2014-12-01

    Thermal-infrared (from about 6 to 100 or more microns wavelength), emission-mode Fourier transform spectrometer (FTS) systems acquire radiometric spectra for diurnal diagnostics of atmospheric properties. We have been funded through NASA's Planetary Instrument Definition and Development Program (PIDDP) to develop CIRS-lite as a lightweight successor to the Goddard-developed Cassini CIRS FTS currently operating in Saturn orbit. CIRS-lite also has promise for Earth science due to its modest mass, power and volume requirements and novel technical capabilities. For Earth, CIRS-lite supports the characterization of climate radiative forcing, including trace species measurements such as methane. Detection capability beyond the typical limit of HgCdTe focal planes (about 16 microns wavelength) enables a more complete characterization of the greenhouse effect. As for trace-species quantification, a beyond-HgCdTe focal plane permits characterization of water without overlapping lines from other species, enabling better measurements of these other species such as methane at wavelengths reachable by HgCdTe.

  10. The origin of atmospheric oxygen on Earth: the innovation of oxygenic photosynthesis.

    PubMed

    Dismukes, G C; Klimov, V V; Baranov, S V; Kozlov, Y N; DasGupta, J; Tyryshkin, A

    2001-02-27

    The evolution of O(2)-producing cyanobacteria that use water as terminal reductant transformed Earth's atmosphere to one suitable for the evolution of aerobic metabolism and complex life. The innovation of water oxidation freed photosynthesis to invade new environments and visibly changed the face of the Earth. We offer a new hypothesis for how this process evolved, which identifies two critical roles for carbon dioxide in the Archean period. First, we present a thermodynamic analysis showing that bicarbonate (formed by dissolution of CO(2)) is a more efficient alternative substrate than water for O(2) production by oxygenic phototrophs. This analysis clarifies the origin of the long debated "bicarbonate effect" on photosynthetic O(2) production. We propose that bicarbonate was the thermodynamically preferred reductant before water in the evolution of oxygenic photosynthesis. Second, we have examined the speciation of manganese(II) and bicarbonate in water, and find that they form Mn-bicarbonate clusters as the major species under conditions that model the chemistry of the Archean sea. These clusters have been found to be highly efficient precursors for the assembly of the tetramanganese-oxide core of the water-oxidizing enzyme during biogenesis. We show that these clusters can be oxidized at electrochemical potentials that are accessible to anoxygenic phototrophs and thus the most likely building blocks for assembly of the first O(2) evolving photoreaction center, most likely originating from green nonsulfur bacteria before the evolution of cyanobacteria.

  11. Rapid oxygenation of Earth's atmosphere 2.33 billion years ago.

    PubMed

    Luo, Genming; Ono, Shuhei; Beukes, Nicolas J; Wang, David T; Xie, Shucheng; Summons, Roger E

    2016-05-01

    Molecular oxygen (O2) is, and has been, a primary driver of biological evolution and shapes the contemporary landscape of Earth's biogeochemical cycles. Although "whiffs" of oxygen have been documented in the Archean atmosphere, substantial O2 did not accumulate irreversibly until the Early Paleoproterozoic, during what has been termed the Great Oxygenation Event (GOE). The timing of the GOE and the rate at which this oxygenation took place have been poorly constrained until now. We report the transition (that is, from being mass-independent to becoming mass-dependent) in multiple sulfur isotope signals of diagenetic pyrite in a continuous sedimentary sequence in three coeval drill cores in the Transvaal Supergroup, South Africa. These data precisely constrain the GOE to 2.33 billion years ago. The new data suggest that the oxygenation occurred rapidly-within 1 to 10 million years-and was followed by a slower rise in the ocean sulfate inventory. Our data indicate that a climate perturbation predated the GOE, whereas the relationships among GOE, "Snowball Earth" glaciation, and biogeochemical cycling will require further stratigraphic correlation supported with precise chronologies and paleolatitude reconstructions. PMID:27386544

  12. The radiation balance of the earth-atmosphere system from Nimbus 3 radiation measurements

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Raschke, E.; Vonderhaar, T. H.; Pasternak, M.; Bandeen, W. R.

    1973-01-01

    The radiation balance of the earth-atmosphere system and its components was computed from global measurements of radiation reflected and emitted from the earth to space. These measurements were made from the meteorological satellite Nimbus 3 during the periods from April 16 to August 15, 1969; October 3 to 17, 1969; and January 21 to February 3, 1970. Primarily the method of evaluation, its inherent assumptions, and possible error sources were discussed. Results are presented by various methods: (1) global, hemispherical, and zonal averages obtained from measurements in all semimonthly periods and (2) global maps of the absorbed solar radiation, the albedo, the outgoing longwave radiation, and the radiation balance obtained from measurements during semimonthly periods in each season (May 1 to 15, July 16 to 31, and October 3 to 17, 1969, and January 21 to February 3, 1970). Annual global averages of the albedo and of the outgoing longwave radiation were determined. These values balance to within 1 percent the annual global energy input by solar radiation that was computed for a solar constant.

  13. Our contaminated atmosphere: The danger of climate change, phases 1 and 2. [effect of atmospheric particulate matter on surface temperature and earth's radiation budget

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cimorelli, A. J.; House, F. B.

    1974-01-01

    The effects of increased concentrations of atmospheric particulate matter on average surface temperature and on the components of the earth's radiation budget are studied. An atmospheric model which couples particulate loading to surface temperature and to changes in the earth's radiation budget was used. A determination of the feasibility of using satellites to monitor the effect of increased atmospheric particulate concentrations is performed. It was found that: (1) a change in man-made particulate loading of a factor of 4 is sufficient to initiate an ice age; (2) variations in the global and hemispheric weighted averages of surface temperature, reflected radiant fluz and emitted radiant flux are nonlinear functions of particulate loading; and (3) a black satellite sphere meets the requirement of night time measurement sensitivity, but not the required day time sensitivity. A nonblack, spherical radiometer whose external optical properties are sensitive to either the reflected radiant fluz or the emitted radiant flux meets the observational sensitivity requirements.

  14. Improving estimations of greenhouse gas transfer velocities by atmosphere-ocean couplers in Earth-System and regional models

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vieira, V. M. N. C. S.; Sahlée, E.; Jurus, P.; Clementi, E.; Pettersson, H.; Mateus, M.

    2015-09-01

    Earth-System and regional models, forecasting climate change and its impacts, simulate atmosphere-ocean gas exchanges using classical yet too simple generalizations relying on wind speed as the sole mediator while neglecting factors as sea-surface agitation, atmospheric stability, current drag with the bottom, rain and surfactants. These were proved fundamental for accurate estimates, particularly in the coastal ocean, where a significant part of the atmosphere-ocean greenhouse gas exchanges occurs. We include several of these factors in a customizable algorithm proposed for the basis of novel couplers of the atmospheric and oceanographic model components. We tested performances with measured and simulated data from the European coastal ocean, having found our algorithm to forecast greenhouse gas exchanges largely different from the forecasted by the generalization currently in use. Our algorithm allows calculus vectorization and parallel processing, improving computational speed roughly 12× in a single cpu core, an essential feature for Earth-System models applications.

  15. Effect of Aerosol Variation on Radiance in the Earth's Atmosphere-Ocean System.

    PubMed

    Plass, G N; Kattawar, G W

    1972-07-01

    The reflected and transmitted radiance is calculated for a realistic model of the atmosphere-ocean system. Multiple scattering to all orders as well as anisotropic scattering from aerosols are taken into account by a Monte Carlo technique. The probability for reflection or refraction at the ocean surface is calculated for each photon. Scattering and absorption by water molecules (Rayleigh) and by hydrosols (Mie) are taken into account within the ocean. The radiance is calculated for a normal aerosol distribution as well as for a three and ten times normal distribution. Calculations are also made for an aerosol layer near the earth as well as for one in the stratosphere. The upward radiance at the top of the atmosphere depends strongly on the total number of aerosols but not on their spatial distribution. Variations in the ozone amount also have little effect on the upward radiance. The calculations are made at the following wavelengths: 0.7 micro, 0.9 micro, 1.67 micro. The radiance above and below the ocean surface as well as the flux at various levels are also discussed.

  16. Large differences in tropical aerosol forcing at the top of the atmosphere and Earth's surface

    PubMed

    Satheesh; Ramanathan

    2000-05-01

    The effect of radiative forcing by anthropogenic aerosols is one of the largest sources of uncertainty in climate predictions. Direct observations of the forcing are therefore needed, particularly for the poorly understood tropical aerosols. Here we present an observational method for quantifying aerosol forcing to within +/-5 per cent. We use calibrated satellite radiation measurements and five independent surface radiometers to quantify the aerosol forcing simultaneously at the Earth's surface and the top of the atmosphere over the tropical northern Indian Ocean. In winter, this region is covered by anthropogenic aerosols of sulphate, nitrate, organics, soot and fly ash from the south Asian continent. Accordingly, mean clear-sky solar radiative heating for the winters of 1998 and 1999 decreased at the ocean surface by 12 to 30 Wm(-2), but only by 4 to 10 Wm(-2) at the top of the atmosphere. This threefold difference (due largely to solar absorption by soot) and the large magnitude of the observed surface forcing both imply that tropical aerosols might slow down the hydrological cycle.

  17. Observing Infrasound and Atmospheric Pressure with the NSF EarthScope USArray Transportable Array

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vernon, F. L.; Hedlin, M. A.; Busby, R. W.; Woodward, R.

    2010-12-01

    We are creating a real-time infrasound array whose sensing elements are co-located with the 400 seismic stations in the USArray Transportable Array component of the NSF EarthScope program. This continuously sampled array, of an unprecedented scale, will provide opportunities for groundbreaking and interdisciplinary research in atmospheric acoustics, atmospheric science, and seismology. Such an array will sample mean (absolute) values and fluctuations of the surface air pressure with nominal 70 km station spacing, with a dynamic range of about 7 orders of magnitude, and with a sampling frequency of up to 40 Hz. All samples will be synchronized to UTC. This dense network of infrasound sensors will permit us to study the nature of long-range infrasound propagation from regional to continental distances, and study the sources of infrasound signals, using actual acoustic data, free of concerns about seismic-to-acoustic coupling. All new TA stations deployed starting this fall will have a Quanterra Environmental Processor with internal VTI SCP1000 MEMS barometric pressure gauge, Setra 278 absolute microbarometer, and NCPA Infrasound Microphone. We will present data from field tests and from the newly deployed instrumentation.

  18. Earth's early atmosphere as seen from carbon and nitrogen isotopic analysis of Archean sediments

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gibson, E. K., Jr.; Carr, L. P.; Gilmour, I.; Pillinger, C. T.

    1986-01-01

    The origin and evolution of the Earth's early atmosphere has long been a topic of great interest but determination of actual compositions over geologic time is a difficult problem. However, recent systematic studies of stromatolite deposits (Precambrian Paleobiology Research Group) has extended our knowledge of Archean ecosystems. It has been shown that many stromatolite deposits have undergone negligible alteration since their time of formation. The discovery of primary fluid inclusions within unaltered 3.5 b.y. old Archiean sediments and the observation that the 3.3 b.y. old Barberton cherts have remained closed to argon loss and have not been subjected to thermal metamorphism suggests that an opportunity exists for the direct measurement of the volatile constituents present at their time of formation. Of primary interest to this study was the possibility that the stromatolites and other Archean sediments might retain a vestige of the atmosphere and thus afford an indication of the variations in carbon dioxide and nitrogen isotopic compositions with time. A suite of essentially unaltered Archean stromatolites and the cherts of different ages and geologic sites have been analyzed for their trapped carbon dioxide and nitrogen compositions by the stepped combustion extraction tech nique utilizing static mass spectrometers for the isotope measurements.

  19. Hydrostatic Simulation of Earth's Atmospheric Gas Using Multi-particle Collision Dynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pattisahusiwa, Asis; Purqon, Acep; Viridi, Sparisoma

    2016-01-01

    Multi-particle collision dynamics (MPCD) is a mesoscopic simulation method to simulate fluid particle-like flows. MPCD has been widely used to simulate various problems in condensed matter. In this study, hydrostatic behavior of gas in the Earth's atmospheric layer is simulated by using MPCD method. The simulation is carried out by assuming the system under ideal state and is affected only by gravitational force. Gas particles are homogeneous and placed in 2D box. Interaction of the particles with the box is applied through implementation of boundary conditions (BC). Periodic BC is applied on the left and the right side, specular reflection on the top side, while bounce-back on the bottom side. Simulation program is executed in Arch Linux and running in notebook with processor Intel i5 @2700 MHz with 10 GB DDR3 RAM. The results show behaviors of the particles obey kinetic theory for ideal gas when gravitational acceleration value is proportional to the particle mass. Density distribution as a function of altitude also meets atmosphere's hydrostatic theory.

  20. The budget of biologically active ultraviolet radiation in the earth-atmosphere system

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Frederick, John E.; Lubin, Dan

    1988-01-01

    This study applies the concept of a budget to describe the interaction of solar ultraviolet (UV) radiation with the earth-atmosphere system. The wavelength ranges of interest are the biologically relevant UV-B between 280 and 320 nm and the UV-A from 32000 to 400 nm. The Nimbus 7 solar backscattered ultraviolet (SBUV) instrument provides measurements of total column ozone and information concerning cloud cover which, in combination with a simple model of radiation transfer, define the fractions of incident solar irradiance absorbed in the atmosphere, reflected to space, and absorbed at the ground. Results for the month of July quantify the contribution of fractional cloud cover and cloud optical thickness to the radiation budget's three components. Scattering within a thick cloud layer makes the downward radiation field at the cloud base more isotropic than is the case for clear skies. For small solar zenith angles, typical of summer midday conditions, the effective pathlength of this diffuse irradiance through tropospheric ozone is greater than that under clear-sky conditions. The result is an enhanced absorption of UV-B radiation in the troposphere during cloud-covered conditions. Major changes in global cloud cover or cloud optical thicknesses could alter the ultraviolet radiation received by the biosphere by an amount comparable to that predicted for long-term trends in ozone.

  1. Oxygenation of Earth's atmosphere and its impact on the evolution of nitrogen-based metabolisms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Papineau, D.; Mojzsis, S. J.

    2002-12-01

    The evolution of metabolic pathways is closely linked to the evolution of the redox state of the terrestrial atmosphere. Nitrogen has been an essential biological element since the emergence of life when reduced nitrogen compounds (e.g. ammonia) were utilized in the prebiotic synthesis of proteins and nucleic acids. The nitrogen isotopic composition of sediments has been used to trace the origin of sedimentary organic matter in the rock record. Nitrogen is therefore suitable as a biosignature to trace the emergence of life on Earth or other planetary bodies as well as to follow the subsequent evolution of the biosphere in response to global redox changes. Evidence is strong that biological nitrogen fixation evolved very early in the history of life. The Last Common Ancestor (LCA) on Earth was most likely capable of nitrogen fixation as seen from the phylogenetic distribution of nitrogen-fixing organisms in both the domains of Bacteria and Archaea. Phylogenetic trees plotted with nitrogen-fixing gene (Nif) sequences from lineages of Bacteria and Archaea suggest that the Nif genes originated in a common ancestor of the two domains. Other phylogenetic analyses have also demonstrated that the paralogous duplication of the nifDK and nifEN operons, central to nitrogen fixation, predated the divergence of Archaea from Bacteria and therefore occurred prior to the emergence of the LCA. Although the same may be true for denitrification, this metabolic pathway probably did not become dominant until atmospheric pO2 increased between ~2.4 to 1.9 Ga during the Great Oxygenation Event (GOE). Recent work has shown a general depletion in 15N content of Archean (pre-2.5 Ga) relative to Phanerozoic (<540 Ma) kerogens. Studies have shown that the distribution of the δ15N values in kerogens shift from negative values in the Early Archean (from -6 to +6‰ with an average near 0‰ ) to approximately contemporary positive values (from +2 to +10‰ with an average at +6‰ ) by the

  2. Land and Atmosphere Near-Real-Time Capability for Earth Observing System

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Murphy, Kevin J.

    2011-01-01

    The past decade has seen a rapid increase in availability and usage of near-real-time data from satellite sensors. The EOSDIS (Earth Observing System Data and Information System) was not originally designed to provide data with sufficiently low latency to satisfy the requirements for near-real-time users. The EOS (Earth Observing System) instruments aboard the Terra, Aqua and Aura satellites make global measurements daily, which are processed into higher-level 'standard' products within 8-40 hours of observation and then made available to users, primarily earth science researchers. However, applications users, operational agencies, and even researchers desire EOS products in near-real-time to support research and applications, including numerical weather and climate prediction and forecasting, monitoring of natural hazards, ecological/invasive species, agriculture, air quality, disaster relief and homeland security. These users often need data much sooner than routine science processing allows, usually within 3 hours, and are willing to trade science product quality for timely access. While Direct Broadcast provides more timely access to data, it does not provide global coverage. In 2002, a joint initiative between NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration), NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration), and the DOD (Department of Defense) was undertaken to provide data from EOS instruments in near-real-time. The NRTPE (Near Real Time Processing Effort) provided products within 3 hours of observation on a best-effort basis. As the popularity of these near-real-time products and applications grew, multiple near-real-time systems began to spring up such as the Rapid Response System. In recognizing the dependence of customers on this data and the need for highly reliable and timely data access, NASA's Earth Science Division sponsored the Earth Science Data and Information System Project (ESDIS)-led development of a new near-real-time system called

  3. Nonlinear acoustic-gravity waves and dust particle redistribution in earth's atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Izvekova, Yu. N.; Popel, S. I.; Chen, B. B.

    2015-11-01

    A continuously stratified model of nonadiabatic terrestrial atmosphere with taking into account the temperature profile is developed to study a possibility of instability development of acoustic-gravity (AG-) waves. It is shown that the existence of the regions in the atmosphere where the instability conditions are satisfied is due to the cooperation of thermal flow of solar radiation, infrared emission of the atmosphere, water vapor condensation, as well as thermal conductivity. Large-amplitude vortices in Earth's troposphere and ionosphere and their possible structure as well as redistribution of dust particles in the ionosphere as a result of vortical motions are discussed. The following possibilities for the dust particle redistribution are studied: capture and evolution of dust particles in AG-vortices, formation of dust vortices as a result of involving a great number of dust particles into vortex motions, and formation of vertical and horizontal dust flows (streamers and zonal flows). It is shown that excitation of AG-vortices at the ionospheric altitudes as a result of development of AG-wave instability leads to a substantial transportation of dust particles and their mixing. Layers of dust particles with a thickness of about a kilometer, forming at the altitudes less than 120 km, distribute within the region of the existence of AG-vortical structures. As a result, at altitudes of 110-120 km, dust vortices can appear, and transportation of particles up to altitudes of 130 km becomes possible. One of the ways of transportation of dust particles in the ionosphere is dust flows, which are generated by dust vortices as a result of development of parametric instability.

  4. The Significance of Land-Atmosphere Processes in the Earth System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Suni, T.; Kulmala, M. T.; Guenther, A. B.

    2012-12-01

    The land-atmosphere interface is where humans primarily operate. Humans modify the land surface in many ways that influence the fluxes of energy and trace gases between land and atmosphere. Their emissions change the chemical composition of the atmosphere and anthropogenic aerosols change the radiative balance of the globe directly by scattering sunlight back to space and indirectly by changing the properties of clouds. Feedback loops among all these processes, land, the atmosphere, and biogeochemical cycles of nutrients and trace gases extend the human influence even further. Over the last decade, the importance of land-atmosphere processes and feedbacks in the Earth System has been shown on many levels and with multiple approaches, and a number of publications have shown the crucial role of the terrestrial ecosystems as regulators of climate [1-6]. Modellers have clearly shown the effect of missing land cover changes and other feedback processes and regional characteristics in current climate models and recommended actions to improve them [7-11]. Unprecedented insights of the long-term net impacts of aerosols on clouds and precipitation have also been provided [12-14]. Land-cover change has been emphasized with model intercomparison projects that showed that realistic land-use representation was essential in land surface modelling [11, 15]. Crucially important tools in this research have been the networks of long-term flux stations and large-scale land-atmosphere observation platforms that are also beginning to combine remote sensing techniques with ground observations [16-20]. Human influence has always been an important part of land-atmosphere science but in order to respond to the new challenges of global sustainability, closer ties with social science and economics groups will be necessary to produce realistic estimates of land use and anthropogenic emissions by analysing future population increase, migration patterns, food production allocation, land

  5. Detection of an Atmosphere Around the Super-Earth 55 Cancri e

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tsiaras, A.; Rocchetto, M.; Waldmann, I. P.; Venot, O.; Varley, R.; Morello, G.; Damiano, M.; Tinetti, G.; Barton, E. J.; Yurchenko, S. N.; Tennyson, J.

    2016-04-01

    We report the analysis of two new spectroscopic observations in the near-infrared of the super-Earth 55 Cancri e, obtained with the WFC3 camera on board the Hubble Space Telescope. 55 Cancri e orbits so close to its parent star that temperatures much higher than 2000 K are expected on its surface. Given the brightness of 55 Cancri, the observations were obtained in scanning mode, adopting a very long scanning length and a very high scanning speed. We use our specialized pipeline to take into account systematics introduced by these observational parameters when coupled with the geometrical distortions of the instrument. We measure the transit depth per wavelength channel with an average relative uncertainty of 22 ppm per visit and find modulations that depart from a straight line model with a 6σ confidence level. These results suggest that 55 Cancri e is surrounded by an atmosphere, which is probably hydrogen-rich. Our fully Bayesian spectral retrieval code, { T }-REx, has identified HCN to be the most likely molecular candidate able to explain the features at 1.42 and 1.54 μm. While additional spectroscopic observations in a broader wavelength range in the infrared will be needed to confirm the HCN detection, we discuss here the implications of such a result. Our chemical model, developed with combustion specialists, indicates that relatively high mixing ratios of HCN may be caused by a high C/O ratio. This result suggests this super-Earth is a carbon-rich environment even more exotic than previously thought.

  6. Controller performance improvements for reentry through Earth's atmosphere for low L/D spacecraft

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kline, Eric Michael

    Development of space-based industry created on the International Space Station is limited by reentry through Earth's atmosphere. The Lyapunov method is applied to improve reentry controller performance through Earth's atmosphere. A Predictor Corrector controller (PCCPA) derived from the Apollo program reentry guidance is the baseline against which candidate controllers are compared. Controllers designed to guide the reentry vehicle to within 1nm of the final target while satisfying a 51.55 BTU/ft2/sec heat rate constraint and a 4 g load constraint are evaluated in a six degree of freedom simulation environment. Three Lyapunov controllers developed in the initial design phase are subjected to variations in vehicle L/D. Controller gains are iteratively determined to satisfy reentry requirements for nominal reentry. However, different controller gain sets have different levels of performance robustness. Only one controller, the Lyapunov Controller, Gain Set 3, satisfies reentry requirements over a larger range of L/D variations than the PCCPA. In the final design phase, three hybrid reentry controllers are developed by combining Lyapunov based guidance routines with PCCPA transition logic and are evaluated for variations in vehicle L/D, weight and initial flight path angle (gamma0). The Hybrid Predictor Corrector/Lyapunov Controller #1 demonstrates the greatest performance robustness and satisfies all reentry requirements over a larger range of L/D, weight, and gamma 0 variations than the PCCPA. The hybrid controller, #3, meets all reentry requirements for a larger range of L/D variations than the PCCPA. The hybrid controller, #2, fails to outperform the PCCPA. All seven reentry controllers are linearized at four operating points and linear robust control analysis techniques are employed to quantify controller performance. Two robustness parameters, eta, a guaranteed domain of stability, and Jw, a measure of system performance to the worst possible direction of the

  7. Application of the locality principle to radio occultation studies of the Earth's atmosphere and ionosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pavelyev, A. G.; Liou, Y. A.; Matyugov, S. S.; Pavelyev, A. A.; Gubenko, V. N.; Zhang, K.; Kuleshov, Y.

    2015-07-01

    A new formulation of the previously introduced principle of locality is presented. The principle can be applied for modernization of the radio occultation (RO) remote sensing of the atmospheres and ionospheres of the Earth and other planets. The principle states that significant contributions to variations of the intensity and phase of the radio waves passing through a layered medium are connected with influence of the vicinities of tangential points where the refractivity gradient is perpendicular to the radio ray trajectory. The RO method assumes spherical symmetry of the investigated medium. In this case, if location of a tangent point relative to the spherical symmetry centre is known, the time derivatives of the RO signal phase and Doppler frequency variations can be recalculated into the refractive attenuation. Several important findings are consequences of the locality principle: (i) if position of the centre of symmetry is known, the total absorption along the ray path can be determined at a single frequency; (ii) in the case of low absorption the height, displacement from the radio ray perigee, and tilt of the inclined ionospheric (atmospheric) layers can be evaluated; (iii) the contributions of the layered and irregular structures in the RO signal can be separated and parameters of layers and turbulence can be measured at a single frequency using joint analysis of the intensity and phase variations. Specially for the Earth's troposphere, the altitude distributions of the weak total absorption (about of 1-4 db) of the radio waves at GPS frequencies corresponding to possible influence of the oxygen, water vapour, and hydrometeors can be measured with accuracy of about 0.1 db at a single frequency. In accordance with the locality principle, a new index of ionospheric activity is introduced. This index is measured from the phase variations of radio waves passing through the ionosphere. Its high correlation with the S4 scintillation index is established. This

  8. Application of locality principle to radio occultation studies of the Earth's atmosphere and ionosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pavelyev, A. G.; Liou, Y. A.; Matyugov, S. S.; Pavelyev, A. A.; Gubenko, V. N.; Zhang, K.; Kuleshov, Y.

    2015-01-01

    A new formulation of previously introduced principle of locality is presented. The principle can be applied for modernization of the radio occultation (RO) remote sensing of the atmospheres and ionospheres of the Earth and planets. The principle states that significant contributions to variations of the amplitude and phase of the radio waves passing through a layered medium are connected with influence of the vicinities of tangential points where the refractivity gradient is perpendicular to the radio ray trajectory. The RO method assumes spherical symmetry of the investigated medium. In this case if location of a tangent point relative to the spherical symmetry center is known, the derivatives on time of the RO signal phase and Doppler frequency variations can be recalculated into the refractive attenuation. Several important findings are consequences of the locality principle: (i) if position of the center of symmetry is known, the total absorption along the ray path can be determined at a single frequency, (ii) in the case of low absorption the height, displacement from the radio ray perigee, and tilt of the inclined ionospheric (atmospheric) layers can be evaluated, (iii) the contributions of the layered and irregular structures in the RO signal can be separated and parameters of layers and turbulence can be measured at a single frequency using joint analysis of the amplitude and phase variations. Specially for the Earth's troposphere, the altitude distributions of the weak total absorption (about of 1-4 db) of the radio waves at GPS frequencies corresponding to possible influence of the oxygen and water vapor can be measured with accuracy of about 0.1 db at a single frequency. According with the locality principle, a new index of ionospheric activity is introduced. This index is measured from the phase variations of radio waves passing through the ionosphere. Its high correlation with S4 scintillation index is established. This correlation indicates the

  9. The Tropical Cyclones as the Possible Sources of Gamma Emission in the Earth's Atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Klimov, S. I.; Sharkov, E. A.; Zelenyi, L. M.

    2009-12-01

    [*S. I. Klimov*] (Space Research Institute [IKI] of RAS; Profsoyuznaya 84/32, 117997 GSP-7 Moscow, Russia; Tel: +7 (495) 333-1100; Fax: +7 (495) 333-1248; e-mail: sklimov@iki.rssi.ru)): E. A. Sharkov (Space Research Institute [IKI] of RAS; Profsoyuznaya 84/32, 117997 GSP-7 Moscow, Russia; Tel: +7 (495) 333-1366; Fax: +7 (495) 333-1248; e-mail: e.sharkov@mail.ru): L. M. Zelenyi (Space Research Institute [IKI] of RAS; Profsoyuznaya 84/32, 117997 GSP-7 Moscow, Russia; Tel: +7 (495) 333-2588; Fax: +7 (495) 333-3311; e-mail: lzelenyi@iki.rssi.ru ): The tropical cyclones (TC) are the strongest sources of thunderstorm activity (and, correspondingly, electromagnetic activity in the wide frequency range) in the Earth's atmosphere. The area dimensions of active region comprise to 1000 km and they achieve vertical development to 16-20 km with speeds of the displacement of the charged drops of water of up to 30 m/s. In the work are evaluated the physical mechanisms of the possibility of generation by TC of gamma emission (TCGE), which can be fixed from the low-orbital spacecraft of the type of the potential Russian micro-satellite Chibis-M (MS) [Zelenyi, et al, Walter de Gruter, Berlin, New York, p. 443-451, 2005]. The study of the new physical mechanisms of the electrical discharges in the atmosphere is basic scientific task Chibis- M [Angarov et al. Wissenschaft und Technik Verlag, Berlin, 2009, p. 69-72]. Complex of scientific instruments of the Chibis-M (overall mass of 12,5 kg) including the instruments: - X-ray - gamma detector (range of X-ray and gamma emission - 50-500 keV), - UV detector (range UV - emission - 300-450 nm), - radiofrequency analyzer (20 - 50 MHz). - digital camber of optical range (spatial resolution 300 m). - plasma-wave complex (0.1-40 kHz), it can be used also for the TCGE study. Delivery Chibis-M into orbit, close to the ISS orbit is intended to carry out in second-half 2010. Micro-satellite "Chibis-M" now designed in IKI. Total mass "Chibis

  10. Sensitivity of elastic surface deformations caused by atmospheric, hydrologic, and oceanic loads to the Earth's crust and mantle properties

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dill, Robert; Klemann, Volker; Kaban, Mikhail; Dobslaw, Henryk; Thomas, Maik

    2016-04-01

    The elastic deformation of the Earth's surface due to atmospheric surface pressure, terrestrial water storage, and ocean bottom pressure on seasonal or shorter time scales is usually represented by a set of elastic load Love numbers or the corresponding Green's function, determined from a radial Earth structure like PREM. Thereby, the influence of local deviations of the Earth's crustal and mantle properties is assumed to be negligible. However, local Green's functions derived individually for 1° grid cells from the 3D crustal structure model CRUST1 show large variations for in particular smaller distance angles. The loading response due to small-scale surface loads extending over less than 2500km2 significantly depends on the heterogeneous shallow structure of the Earth. In this contribution, we discuss the influence of lateral variations in the crust and mantle structure on atmospheric, hydrologic, and oceanic surface loads with regard to their spatial scales and distribution. Non-tidal atmospheric loading is calculated from an atmospheric surface pressure time series covering four decades (1976 - 2015) based on 3-hourly atmospheric data of ECMWF that has been homogenized by mapping surface pressure to a common reference orography. Hydrological loading is calculated for daily terrestrial water storage from LSDM over the same time period, where the surface water compartment is mapped from the 0.5° model resolution to a 0.125° GIS-based river network. Ocean tidal loading is exemplarily calculated based on the FES2014 ocean tidal model (0.0625°). Especially along the coasts of the oceans; in regions with steep orographic gradients; and in areas with thick crustal layers or sediments we will show the significant influence of the Earth's structure on small-scale deformation features caused by surface loads.

  11. The Role of Artificial Atmospheric CO2 Removal in Stabilizing Earth's Climate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tokarska, Katarzyna; Zickfeld, Kirsten

    2014-05-01

    Recent research showed that global mean temperature remains approximately constant for several centuries after complete cessation of CO2 emissions, while global mean thermosteric sea level continues to rise. This implies that a net artificial removal of CO2 from the atmosphere may be necessary to decrease the atmospheric CO2 concentrations more rapidly and bring the climate system components to their previous states on human timescales. The purpose of this study is to explore the reversibility of climate responses to a range of realistic CO2 emission scenarios, which follow a gradual transition from fossil-fuel driven economy to a zero-emission energy system with implementation of negative CO2 emissions, using the University of Victoria Earth System Climate Model of intermediate complexity (UVic ESCM 2.9). The CO2 emission pathways were designed to meet constraints related to the implementation of negative emission technologies derived from the integrated assessment literature. Our simulations show that while it is possible, in principle, to revert the global mean temperature after a phase of overshoot, the thermosteric sea level rise is not reversible on human timescales for the range of emission scenarios considered. During the negative emission phase, CO2 is released form the natural (terrestrial and marine) carbon sinks, which diminishes the efficiency of negative emissions implemented. In addition, spatial changes of vegetation distribution patterns are not entirely reversible on human timescales. We suggest that while negative emissions could potentially stabilize the global mean temperature at a desired level, such technology does not supersede reductions in fossil fuel emissions, as the artificial CO2 capture at large scale has many limitations and is unable to stabilize other climate system components (e.g. sea level) at desired levels.

  12. Exploring Earth's Ionosphere with CINDI: Bringing an Upper Atmosphere Mission into Pre-College Classrooms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Urquhart, M. L.; Hairston, M. R.; Richardson, J. M.; Olson, C.

    2003-12-01

    We will present the Education and Public Outreach work in progress for the joint Air Force/NASA project CINDI (Coupled Ion Neutral Dynamic Investigation), which will launch in early 2004 on a US Air Force C/NOFS (Communications/Navigations Outage Forecast System) Satellite. CINDI, in conjunction with the other instruments on C/NOFS, will study how radio signals sent through the ionosphere are affected by variability with this layer of the atmosphere. The Educational outreach for CINDI is focused on helping students, educators, and the general public better understand the link between the ionosphere and our technological civilization. The ionosphere is typically neglected in pre-college science classes despite its impact on modern society and the substantial resources invested by funding agencies on furthering our understanding of this atmospheric layer. Our approach is to increase student understanding of the terrestrial ionosphere and Sun-Earth connections through strong connections to existing pre-college curricula and standards. We have created a partnership between the William B. Hanson Center for Space Sciences and the Science Education Program within the University of Texas at Dallas (UTD) to produce a quality Educator Guide and a Summer Educator Workshop. A senior graduate student in physics and an experienced middle school educator in UTD's Science Education Master of Science Teaching Program have been partnered to ensure that our the Educator Guide and Workshop will contain both science and pedagogy, and be easily integrated into secondary science classes. The summer 2004 workshop will be offered in the Dallas area, which has a significant population of minority and economically disadvantaged students. We will recruit teachers from districts that serve a large number of underserved/underrepresented students. The Educator Guide and workshop materials will be made available on the CINDI Web site for distribution to a national audience.

  13. Geostationary Spectrograph (GeoSpec) for Earth and Atmospheric Science Applications

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Janz, Scott J.

    2003-01-01

    GeoSpec will support several possible future mission concepts in the Atmospheric Sciences and in Land and Ocean Sciences by measurement of both chemically linked atmospheric trace gas concentrations and profiles of important molecules such as OS, N02, CH20 and SO2 and at the same time coastal and ocean pollution events, tidal effects, and the origin and evolution of aerosol plumes. The instrument design concept we will describe is a dual spectrograph covering the WMS wavelength region of 310- 481 nm and the VIS/NIR wavelength region of 500-900 nm. A third channel in the short- wave infrared (SWIR) region between 2.2 p and 2.4 pn for total column measurements of CO, CH4, and N20 will also be described. The goal is to design a system capable of making moderate spatial resolution (750 meters at nadir) hyperspectral measurements (0.2 to 1.2 nm resolution) from a geostationary orbit. This would enable studies of time- varying pollution and coastal change processes with a temporal resolution of 5 minutes on a regional scale to 1 hour on a continental scale. Technological advances in the design and fabrication of convex holographic gratings and large format, high dynamic range PIN/CMOS detectors at the focal plane will be exploited. By simply changing the focal length of the front-end telescope GeoSpec can accommodate different orbital altitudes, including low Earth orbit, the Sun-side Lagrangian point L1, and/or different spatial resolutions.

  14. OBSERVATIONAL EVIDENCE FOR A METAL-RICH ATMOSPHERE ON THE SUPER-EARTH GJ1214b

    SciTech Connect

    Desert, Jean-Michel; Jacob Bean; Berta, Zachory K.; Charbonneau, David; Irwin, Jonathan; Burke, Christopher J.; Kempton, Eliza Miller-Ricci; Fortney, Jonathan; Nutzman, Philip

    2011-04-20

    We report observations of two consecutive transits of the warm super-Earth exoplanet GJ 1214b at 3.6 and 4.5 {mu}m with the Infrared Array Camera instrument on board the Spitzer Space Telescope. The two transit light curves allow for the determination of the transit parameters for this system. We find these parameters to be consistent with the previously determined values and no evidence for transit timing variations. The main investigation consists of measuring the transit depths in each bandpass to constrain the planet's transmission spectrum. Fixing the system scale and impact parameters, we measure R{sub p} /R{sub *} = 0.1176{sup +0.0008}{sub -0.0009} and 0.1163{sup +0.0010}{sub -0.0008} at 3.6 and 4.5 {mu}m, respectively. Combining these data with the previously reported MEarth Observatory measurements in the red optical allows us to rule out a cloud-free, solar composition (i.e., hydrogen-dominated) atmosphere at 4.5{sigma} confidence. This independently confirms a recent finding that was based on a measurement of the planet's transmission spectrum using the Very Large Telescope (VLT). The Spitzer, MEarth, and VLT observations together yield a remarkably flat transmission spectrum over the large wavelength domain spanned by the data. Consequently, cloud-free atmospheric models require more than 30% metals (assumed to be in the form of H{sub 2}O) by volume to be consistent with all the observations.

  15. Fermi large area telescope observations of the cosmic-ray induced {gamma}-ray emission of the Earth's atmosphere

    SciTech Connect

    Abdo, A. A.; Ackermann, M.; Ajello, M.; Bechtol, K.; Berenji, B.; Bloom, E. D.; Borgland, A. W.; Bouvier, A.; Buehler, R.; Cameron, R. A.; Charles, E.; Chiang, J.; Claus, R.; Digel, S. W.; Couto e Silva, E. do; Drell, P. S.; Dubois, R.; Focke, W. B.; Funk, S.; Glanzman, T.

    2009-12-15

    We report on measurements of the cosmic-ray induced {gamma}-ray emission of Earth's atmosphere by the Large Area Telescope on board the Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope. The Large Area Telescope has observed the Earth during its commissioning phase and with a dedicated Earth limb following observation in September 2008. These measurements yielded {approx}6.4x10{sup 6} photons with energies >100 MeV and {approx}250 hours total live time for the highest quality data selection. This allows the study of the spatial and spectral distributions of these photons with unprecedented detail. The spectrum of the emission--often referred to as Earth albedo gamma-ray emission--has a power-law shape up to 500 GeV with spectral index {gamma}=2.79{+-}0.06.

  16. Atmospheric influences on infrared-laser signals used for occultation measurements between Low Earth Orbit satellites

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schweitzer, S.; Kirchengast, G.; Proschek, V.

    2011-10-01

    LEO-LEO infrared-laser occultation (LIO) is a new occultation technique between Low Earth Orbit (LEO) satellites, which applies signals in the short wave infrared spectral range (SWIR) within 2 μm to 2.5 μm. It is part of the LEO-LEO microwave and infrared-laser occultation (LMIO) method that enables to retrieve thermodynamic profiles (pressure, temperature, humidity) and altitude levels from microwave signals and profiles of greenhouse gases and further variables such as line-of-sight wind speed from simultaneously measured LIO signals. Due to the novelty of the LMIO method, detailed knowledge of atmospheric influences on LIO signals and of their suitability for accurate trace species retrieval did not yet exist. Here we discuss these influences, assessing effects from refraction, trace species absorption, aerosol extinction and Rayleigh scattering in detail, and addressing clouds, turbulence, wind, scattered solar radiation and terrestrial thermal radiation as well. We show that the influence of refractive defocusing, foreign species absorption, aerosols and turbulence is observable, but can be rendered small to negligible by use of the differential transmission principle with a close frequency spacing of LIO absorption and reference signals within 0.5%. The influences of Rayleigh scattering and terrestrial thermal radiation are found negligible. Cloud-scattered solar radiation can be observable under bright-day conditions, but this influence can be made negligible by a close time spacing (within 5 ms) of interleaved laser-pulse and background signals. Cloud extinction loss generally blocks SWIR signals, except very thin or sub-visible cirrus clouds, which can be addressed by retrieving a cloud layering profile and exploiting it in the trace species retrieval. Wind can have a small influence on the trace species absorption, which can be made negligible by using a simultaneously retrieved or a moderately accurate background wind speed profile. We conclude that

  17. Environmental networks for large-scale monitoring of Earth and atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maurodimou, Olga; Kolios, Stavros; Konstantaras, Antonios; Georgoulas, George; Stylios, Chrysostomos

    2013-04-01

    Installation and operation of instrument/sensor networks are proven fundamental in the monitoring of the physical environment from local to global scale. The advances in electronics, wireless communications and informatics has led to the development of a huge number of networks at different spatial scales that measure, collect and store a wide range of environmental parameters. These networks have been gradually evolved into integrated information systems that provide real time monitoring, forecasts and different products from the initial collected datasets. Instrument/sensor networks have nowadays become important solutions for environmental monitoring, comprising a basic component of fully automated systems developing worldwide that contribute in the efforts for a sustainable Earth's environment (e.g. Hart et al., 2006, Othman et al., 2012). They are also used as a source of data for models parameterization and as verification tools for accuracy assessment techniques of the satellite imagery. Environmental networks can be incorporated into decision support systems (e.g Rizzi et al., 2012) providing informational background along with data from satellites for decision making, manage problems, suggest solutions and best practices for a sustainable management of the environment. This is a comparative study aiming to examine and highlight the significant role of existing instrument/sensor networks for large-scale monitoring of environmental issues, especially atmospheric and marine environment as well as weather and climate. We provide characteristic examples of integrated systems based on large scale instrument/sensor networks along with other sources of data (like satellite datasets) as informational background to measure, identify, monitor, analyze and forecast a vast series of atmospheric parameters (like CO2, O3, particle matter and solar irradiance), weather, climate and their impacts (e.g., cloud systems, lightnings, rainfall, air and surface temperature

  18. Composition of LHB Comets and Their Influence on the Early Earth Atmosphere Composition

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tornow, C.; Kupper, S.; Ilgner, M.; Kuehrt, E.; Motschmann, U.

    2011-01-01

    Two main processes were responsible for the composition of this atmosphere: chemical evolution of the volatile fraction of the accretion material forming the planet and the delivery of gasses to the planetary surface by impactors during the late heavy bombardment (LHB). The amount and composition of the volatile fraction influences the outgassing of the Earth mantle during the last planetary formation period. A very weakened form of outgassing activity can still be observed today by examining the composition of volcanic gasses. An enlightenment of the second process is based on the sparse records of the LHB impactors resulting from the composition of meteorites, observed cometary comas, and the impact material found on the Moon. However, for an assessment of the influence of the outgassing on the one hand and the LHB event on the other, one has to supplement the observations with numerical simulations of the formation of volatiles and their incorporation into the accretion material which is the precursors of planetary matter, comets and asteroids. These simulations are performed with a combined hydrodynamic-chemical model of the solar nebula (SN). We calculate the chemical composition of the gas and dust phase of the SN. From these data, we draw conclusions on the upper limits of the water content and the amount of carbon and nitrogen rich volatiles incorporated later into the accretion material. Knowing these limits we determine the portion of major gas compounds delivered during the LHB and compare it with the related quantities of the outgassed species.

  19. Spatial characteristics of airglow and solar-scatter radiance from the earth's atmosphere

    SciTech Connect

    Huguenin, R.; Wohlers, R.; Weinberg, M.; Huffman, R.; Eastes, R.

    1989-08-09

    Data measured by the Polar BEAR/AIRS UV Experiment were processed to extract spatial-radiance characteristics. Photometer-mode 1304A dayside data measured on Julian Day 219, 1987, near mid-day were analyzed. The spatial structure of thermospheric dayside radiance at 1304A appeared to be controlled principally by turbulence over spatial scales of 10 million - 100 meters, with modifications imposed by Rayleigh-scattering effects and magnetospherically forced phenomena. Spatial structure can be adequately modeled fractally, using dimensions based on Kolmogorov formalism modified by the Rayleigh scattering phase function. Mean radiance can be modeled using existing models of radiant intensity, resonance scattering, and absorption combined with thermospheric composition and general circulation models, such as MSIS-83, scaled to the mean and RHS intensities measured by Polar BEAR. The results can be incorporated in a background radiance simulation model that will provide a means for testing and refining phenomenological models of the structured earth background. This will be important not only for improving physical and chemical models of atmospheric features and processes, but it will allow parametric predictions of spatial structure and clutter to be developed for sensor applications.

  20. [Effect of the atmospheric ozone layer on the biologically active ultraviolet radiation on the earth's surface].

    PubMed

    Schulze, R; Kasten, F

    1975-08-01

    Based on measurements of the spectral irradiation intensity of UV-B global radiation by Bener (1960) and on the curve of spectral skin erythema effects newly measured by Urbach and Berger (1972), the biologically active UV-radiation at earth's surface has been calculated as a function of sun's altitude and atmospheric ozone content in so-called "Biological Units": BE = mWh cm-2 times erythema efficacy. On the basis of these data, the total daily, monthly, and yearly amounts of biologically active UV-radiation have been determined for the different geographical latitudes and various ozone contents. Approximately two thirds of BU hit the equatorial zone from 35 degrees south to 35 degrees north. Provided that the stratospheric ozone layer would be reduced by ten per cent from the exhaust gases of supersonic planes flying at high-altitude, an increase of BU would result amounting to 18% at the equator, to 19% in middle latitudes, and to 22% at the poles.

  1. Graphics Processing Unit (GPU) Acceleration of the Goddard Earth Observing System Atmospheric Model

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Putnam, Williama

    2011-01-01

    The Goddard Earth Observing System 5 (GEOS-5) is the atmospheric model used by the Global Modeling and Assimilation Office (GMAO) for a variety of applications, from long-term climate prediction at relatively coarse resolution, to data assimilation and numerical weather prediction, to very high-resolution cloud-resolving simulations. GEOS-5 is being ported to a graphics processing unit (GPU) cluster at the NASA Center for Climate Simulation (NCCS). By utilizing GPU co-processor technology, we expect to increase the throughput of GEOS-5 by at least an order of magnitude, and accelerate the process of scientific exploration across all scales of global modeling, including: The large-scale, high-end application of non-hydrostatic, global, cloud-resolving modeling at 10- to I-kilometer (km) global resolutions Intermediate-resolution seasonal climate and weather prediction at 50- to 25-km on small clusters of GPUs Long-range, coarse-resolution climate modeling, enabled on a small box of GPUs for the individual researcher After being ported to the GPU cluster, the primary physics components and the dynamical core of GEOS-5 have demonstrated a potential speedup of 15-40 times over conventional processor cores. Performance improvements of this magnitude reduce the required scalability of 1-km, global, cloud-resolving models from an unfathomable 6 million cores to an attainable 200,000 GPU-enabled cores.

  2. A 35 Year Earth Science Data Record of Gridded IR Atmospheric Radiances

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Halem, M.; Chapman, D.; Nguyen, P.

    2008-12-01

    We present the generation of a 35 year Earth Science Data Record (ESDR) of gridded level 1B atmospheric radiances at a 250 km spatial resolution from sources of satellite data including the Vertical Temperature Profiler Radiometer (VTPR), High Resolution Infrared Sounder (HIRS2/3/4), and Atmospheric Infrared Sounder (AIRS). We use the MODIS long wave channels to validate the calibration of the AIRS and HIRS data. VTPR is an operational 8-spectral channel infrared sounding system with an IFOV around 55km at nadir that operated from 1972 to 1979. The HIRS/2 sensor is a 20 spectral channel instrument with an IFOV approx. 20km, that flew from 1979 to 2001 forming a 22 year record. HIRS/3, is an advanced HIRS sounder that flew on NOAA 15-17 from 1998 to the present. HIRS/4, essentially the same as HIRS/3 except for an IFOV of 10 km has flown on the ESA Met 0p A from 2006 to present. AIRS on Aqua satellite launched on May 2002 has 2374 spectral channels from 3.7 μm to 15 μm and is well calibrated as compared with MODIS channels on the same satellite. Based on the Aqua Senior Project Review of available flight fuel, power and orbital maneuvers, the assessed life span of the satellite Aqua is estimated to be 2013. No such gridded data products of just the observed IR radiances are available since the emphasis for these sensors was the inference of temperature profiles from the observations for use in weather analysis and prediction. We have developed a system, SOAR, that provides gridded radiance data for AIRS and MODIS radiances that can meet the precision and accuracy required for a Fundamental Data Record (FDR). We are exploiting the IBM Cell blade cluster (at UMBC) of 250 processors to geolocate and grid the entire data volume of AIRS and MODIS instruments employing a data intensive raycasting algorithm. The Observation Coverage (obscov) based geolocation significantly improves gridded accuracy by 1 Kelvin Brightness Temperature over most regions on Earth, when

  3. The annual radiation balance of the earth-atmosphere system during 1969-70 from Nimbus 3 measurements.

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Raschke, E.; Vonder Haar, T. H.; Bandeen, W. R.; Pasternak , M.

    1973-01-01

    Measurements of reflected solar radiation and emitted thermal radiation taken with a radiometer on the meteorological satellite Nimbus 3 during 10 semi-monthly periods (April-15 August, 3-17 October, 1969; 21 January-3 February, 1970) provided for the first time high-resolution data on the earth's annual global radiation budget. Results on the planetary albedo, the amount of absorbed solar radiation, the infrared radiation loss to space, and the radiation balance of the earth-atmosphere system are discussed at various scales: global, hemispherical, and zonal averages; as well as global and polar maps with a spatial resolution of about synoptic scale.

  4. Inverse problems in space remote sensing: A sensitivity study on the atmospheres of Earth-like exoplanets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vasquez, M.; Schreier, F.; Gimeno Garcia, S.; Hedelt, P.; Trautmann, T.

    2014-04-01

    More than one thousand exoplanets have been discovered in the past two decades, with some dozen of them in the host stars' habitable zone and with size and mass similar to Earth. Furthermore, spectra of exoplanets become available with reasonable quality (resolution and noise) that trigger the question of remote sensing of the planet's atmosphere. The objective of this sensitivity study is to identify the optimal state vector representing the atmosphere in the inverse problem. Solving the inverse problem will ultimately allow to characterize the planet and determine its habitability. Using a high resolution infrared radiative transfer code with a line-by-line molecular absorption model, we calculate synthetic spectra of exoplanets orbiting dwarf stars. Key parameters describing the atmosphere (i.e., molecular abundances, temperature, pressure) are identified and the Jacobians (i.e. partial derivatives of the spectra) are evaluated to investigate the feasibility to retrieve the state of the planetary atmosphere.

  5. Impact features tracing hypervelocity airbursts on earth from the atmosphere to the ground

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Courty, M. M.

    2012-12-01

    In the absence of deep craters, impact features have been debated to possibly tracing proximal ejecta from yet undetected structure or airburst debris from a meteorite collision with the terrestrial atmosphere or lithosphere. We examine the possibility for impact features to have originated from the shock layer formed ahead of a hypervelocity collider in the earth atmosphere. This hypothesis is approached by comparing impact features from controlled materials to puzzling geological ones: (1) debris collected at the ground from a high altitude meteor airburst recorded on 2011 August 2nd in Southern France; (2) laboratory experiments performed for defense purposes at the CEA Gramat Center (France) with the Persephone hypervelocity light gas gun; (3) the Zhamanshin impact breccia, the Lybian glass, the Egyptian Dakhleh glass, the Tasmanian Darwin glass, the Australasian tektite strewnfield and the Australian Henbury crater field. The Persephone experiments include collisions from 4.1 to 7.9 km/s by a steel projectile embedded into a polycarbonate holder with a polystyrene separator on to a 40 mm thick aluminum target. The impact features been characterized by coupling Environmental SEM with EDS, Raman micro-spectrometry, XRD, TEM, Tof-SIMS, ICP-MS and isotope analyses. Similar carbonaceous polymorphs that are closely imbricated at meso to nano-scales to the crystallized components (including the metal blebs) and to the glass phases (spherules or matrix) are present in all the impact features studied. They dominantly consist of aliphatic polymers, rare aromatic compounds, with graphite-lonsdaleite inclusions. The Persephone experiments help relating the graphite-lonsdaleite couple to transformed organic residues by the transient high pressure shock (a few tens MPa) and the transient heating (ca 100°C) and the aliphatic polymers to new hydrocarbons that formed from the pulverized polycarbonate and polystyrene. The Persephone experiments provide the controlled situation

  6. Atmospheric influences on infrared-laser signals used for occultation measurements between Low Earth Orbit satellites

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schweitzer, S.; Kirchengast, G.; Proschek, V.

    2011-05-01

    LEO-LEO infrared-laser occultation (LIO) is a new occultation technique between Low Earth Orbit (LEO) satellites, which applies signals in the short wave infrared spectral range (SWIR) within 2 μm to 2.5 μm. It is part of the LEO-LEO microwave and infrared-laser occultation (LMIO) method, recently introduced by Kirchengast and Schweitzer (2011), that enables to retrieve thermodynamic profiles (pressure, temperature, humidity) and accurate altitude levels from microwave signals and profiles of greenhouse gases and further variables such as line-of-sight wind speed from simultaneously measured LIO signals. For enabling trace species retrieval based on differential transmission, the LIO signals are spectrally located as pairs, one in the centre of a suitable absorption line of a target species (absorption signal) and one close by but outside of any absorption lines (reference signal). Due to the novelty of the LMIO method, detailed knowledge of atmospheric influences on LIO signals and of their suitability for accurate trace species retrieval did not yet exist. Here we discuss the atmospheric influences on the transmission and differential transmission of LIO signals. Refraction effects, trace species absorption (by target species, and cross-sensitivity to foreign species), aerosol extinction and Rayleigh scattering are studied in detail. The influences of clouds, turbulence, wind, scattered solar radiation and terrestrial thermal radiation are discussed as well. We show that the influence of defocusing, foreign species absorption, aerosols and turbulence is observable, but can be rendered small to negligible by use of the differential transmission principle and by a design with close frequency spacing of absorption and reference signals within 0.5 %. The influences of Rayleigh scattering and thermal radiation on the received signal intensities are found negligible. Cloud-scattered solar radiation can be observable under bright-day conditions but this influence can

  7. THE HABITABLE ZONE OF EARTH-LIKE PLANETS WITH DIFFERENT LEVELS OF ATMOSPHERIC PRESSURE

    SciTech Connect

    Vladilo, Giovanni; Murante, Giuseppe; Silva, Laura; Provenzale, Antonello; Ferri, Gaia; Ragazzini, Gregorio

    2013-04-10

    As a contribution to the study of the habitability of extrasolar planets, we implemented a one-dimensional energy balance model (EBM), the simplest seasonal model of planetary climate, with new prescriptions for most physical quantities. Here we apply our EBM to investigate the surface habitability of planets with an Earth-like atmospheric composition but different levels of surface pressure. The habitability, defined as the mean fraction of the planet's surface on which liquid water could exist, is estimated from the pressure-dependent liquid water temperature range, taking into account seasonal and latitudinal variations of surface temperature. By running several thousands of EBM simulations we generated a map of the habitable zone (HZ) in the plane of the orbital semi-major axis, a, and surface pressure, p, for planets in circular orbits around a Sun-like star. As pressure increases, the HZ becomes broader, with an increase of 0.25 AU in its radial extent from p = 1/3 to 3 bar. At low pressure, the habitability is low and varies with a; at high pressure, the habitability is high and relatively constant inside the HZ. We interpret these results in terms of the pressure dependence of the greenhouse effect, the efficiency of horizontal heat transport, and the extent of the liquid water temperature range. Within the limits discussed in the paper, the results can be extended to planets in eccentric orbits around non-solar-type stars. The main characteristics of the pressure-dependent HZ are modestly affected by variations of planetary properties, particularly at high pressure.

  8. Study of Earth and Jupiter-like plasmas for atmospheric entries using a non-transferred arc torch

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Menecier, S.; Gouy, P. A.; Duffour, E.; Perisse, F.; Vacher, D.; Cerqueira, N.; Dudeck, M.; Reynier, Ph; Marraffa, L.

    2015-08-01

    This paper presents the results obtained by a 100 kW non-transferred arc plasma torch dedicated to the studies of plasmas characteristics of atmospheric entries of spatial probes, especially Earth and Jupiter entries. Spectra acquisition of the produced plasmas is achieved using optical emission spectroscopy. For Earth entry conditions, air plasma was obtained with a maximal temperature around 6800 K with a good agreement using atomic lines of oxygen and nitrogen (and also copper coming from electrode’s ablation) and molecular bands of N2, CN and \\text{N}2+ , testifying to a good thermal equilibrium. As the first step in the study of Jupiter atmospheric entry, pure helium plasma was produced with the same maximal temperature of about 7500 K. Helium plasma was achieved for the first time using the plasma torch. Recorded spectra show a continuum, He I lines as well as copper. He II lines are not detected.

  9. Pathways to Earth-like atmospheres. Extreme ultraviolet (EUV)-powered escape of hydrogen-rich protoatmospheres.

    PubMed

    Lammer, Helmut; Kislyakova, K G; Odert, P; Leitzinger, M; Schwarz, R; Pilat-Lohinger, E; Kulikov, Yu N; Khodachenko, M L; Güdel, M; Hanslmeier, M

    2011-12-01

    We discuss the evolution of the atmosphere of early Earth and of terrestrial exoplanets which may be capable of sustaining liquid water oceans and continents where life may originate. The formation age of a terrestrial planet, its mass and size, as well as the lifetime in the EUV-saturated early phase of its host star play a significant role in its atmosphere evolution. We show that planets even in orbits within the habitable zone of their host stars might not lose nebular- or catastrophically outgassed initial protoatmospheres completely and could end up as water worlds with CO2 and hydrogen- or oxygen-rich upper atmospheres. If an atmosphere of a terrestrial planet evolves to an N2-rich atmosphere too early in its lifetime, the atmosphere may be lost. We show that the initial conditions set up by the formation of a terrestrial planet and by the evolution of the host star's EUV and plasma environment are very important factors owing to which a planet may evolve to a habitable world. Finally we present a method for studying the discussed atmosphere evolution hypotheses by future UV transit observations of terrestrial exoplanets.

  10. Cloud Effects on Meridional Atmospheric Energy Budget Estimated from Clouds and the Earth's Radiant Energy System (CERES) Data

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kato, Seiji; Rose, Fred G.; Rutan, David A.; Charlock, Thomas P.

    2008-01-01

    The zonal mean atmospheric cloud radiative effect, defined as the difference of the top-of-atmosphere (TOA) and surface cloud radiative effects, is estimated from three years of Clouds and the Earth's Radiant Energy System (CERES) data. The zonal mean shortwave effect is small, though it tends to be positive (warming). This indicates that clouds increase shortwave absorption in the atmosphere, especially in midlatitudes. The zonal mean atmospheric cloud radiative effect is, however, dominated by the longwave effect. The zonal mean longwave effect is positive in the tropics and decreases with latitude to negative values (cooling) in polar regions. The meridional gradient of cloud effect between midlatitude and polar regions exists even when uncertainties in the cloud effect on the surface enthalpy flux and in the modeled irradiances are taken into account. This indicates that clouds increase the rate of generation of mean zonal available potential energy. Because the atmospheric cooling effect in polar regions is predominately caused by low level clouds, which tend to be stationary, we postulate that the meridional and vertical gradients of cloud effect increase the rate of meridional energy transport by dynamics in the atmosphere from midlatitude to polar region, especially in fall and winter. Clouds then warm the surface in polar regions except in the Arctic in summer. Clouds, therefore, contribute in increasing the rate of meridional energy transport from midlatitude to polar regions through the atmosphere.

  11. Comparison between spectro-temporal analysis methods on the Earth rotation parameters and their atmospheric excitation functions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kosek, Wieslaw; Popinski, Waldemar

    In this paper the three spectro-temporal analyses: the Fourier Transform Band Pass Filter (FTBPF), the Wavelet Transform (WT) and Harmonie Wavelet Transform (HWT) are compared on short period Earth Rotation Parameters (ERP) and the Atmospheric Angular Momentum (AAM) data. The computed time variable and time-frequency spectra of length of day (LOD) data reveal various effects of changing the time and frequency resolution in the FTBPF and frequency resolution in the HWT spectra.

  12. Experimental validation of a millimeter wave radar technique to remotely sense atmospheric pressure at the Earth's surface

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Flower, D. A.; Peckham, G. E.; Bradford, W. J.

    1984-01-01

    Experiments with a millimeter wave radar operating on the NASA CV-990 aircraft which validate the technique for remotely sensing atmospheric pressure at the Earth's surface are described. Measurements show that the precise millimeter wave observations needed to deduce pressure from space with an accuracy of 1 mb are possible, that sea surface reflection properties agree with theory and that the measured variation of differential absorption with altitude corresponds to that expected from spectroscopic models.

  13. Fermi large area telescope observations of the cosmic-ray induced γ-ray emission of the Earth's atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abdo, A. A.; Ackermann, M.; Ajello, M.; Atwood, W. B.; Baldini, L.; Ballet, J.; Barbiellini, G.; Bastieri, D.; Baughman, B. M.; Bechtol, K.; Bellazzini, R.; Berenji, B.; Bloom, E. D.; Bonamente, E.; Borgland, A. W.; Bouvier, A.; Bregeon, J.; Brez, A.; Brigida, M.; Bruel, P.; Buehler, R.; Burnett, T. H.; Buson, S.; Caliandro, G. A.; Cameron, R. A.; Caraveo, P. A.; Casandjian, J. M.; Cecchi, C.; Çelik, Ö.; Charles, E.; Chekhtman, A.; Chiang, J.; Ciprini, S.; Claus, R.; Cohen-Tanugi, J.; Conrad, J.; de Palma, F.; Digel, S. W.; Do Couto E Silva, E.; Drell, P. S.; Dubois, R.; Dumora, D.; Farnier, C.; Favuzzi, C.; Fegan, S. J.; Focke, W. B.; Fortin, P.; Frailis, M.; Fukazawa, Y.; Funk, S.; Fusco, P.; Gargano, F.; Gehrels, N.; Germani, S.; Giebels, B.; Giglietto, N.; Giordano, F.; Glanzman, T.; Godfrey, G.; Grenier, I. A.; Grondin, M.-H.; Grove, J. E.; Guillemot, L.; Guiriec, S.; Hays, E.; Horan, D.; Hughes, R. E.; Jóhannesson, G.; Johnson, A. S.; Johnson, T. J.; Johnson, W. N.; Kamae, T.; Katagiri, H.; Kataoka, J.; Kawai, N.; Kerr, M.; Knödlseder, J.; Kuss, M.; Lande, J.; Latronico, L.; Lemoine-Goumard, M.; Longo, F.; Loparco, F.; Lott, B.; Lovellette, M. N.; Lubrano, P.; Makeev, A.; Mazziotta, M. N.; McEnery, J. E.; Meurer, C.; Michelson, P. F.; Mitthumsiri, W.; Mizuno, T.; Monte, C.; Monzani, M. E.; Morselli, A.; Moskalenko, I. V.; Murgia, S.; Nolan, P. L.; Norris, J. P.; Nuss, E.; Ohsugi, T.; Okumura, A.; Omodei, N.; Orlando, E.; Ormes, J. F.; Paneque, D.; Panetta, J. H.; Parent, D.; Pelassa, V.; Pepe, M.; Pesce-Rollins, M.; Piron, F.; Porter, T. A.; Rainò, S.; Rando, R.; Razzano, M.; Reimer, A.; Reimer, O.; Reposeur, T.; Rochester, L. S.; Rodriguez, A. Y.; Roth, M.; Sadrozinski, H. F.-W.; Sander, A.; Saz Parkinson, P. M.; Sgrò, C.; Share, G. H.; Siskind, E. J.; Smith, D. A.; Smith, P. D.; Spandre, G.; Spinelli, P.; Strickman, M. S.; Suson, D. J.; Takahashi, H.; Tanaka, T.; Thayer, J. B.; Thayer, J. G.; Thompson, D. J.; Tibaldo, L.; Torres, D. F.; Tosti, G.; Tramacere, A.; Uchiyama, Y.; Usher, T. L.; Vasileiou, V.; Vilchez, N.; Vitale, V.; Waite, A. P.; Wang, P.; Winer, B. L.; Wood, K. S.; Ylinen, T.; Ziegler, M.

    2009-12-01

    We report on measurements of the cosmic-ray induced γ-ray emission of Earth’s atmosphere by the Large Area Telescope on board the Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope. The Large Area Telescope has observed the Earth during its commissioning phase and with a dedicated Earth limb following observation in September 2008. These measurements yielded ˜6.4×106 photons with energies >100MeV and ˜250 hours total live time for the highest quality data selection. This allows the study of the spatial and spectral distributions of these photons with unprecedented detail. The spectrum of the emission—often referred to as Earth albedo gamma-ray emission—has a power-law shape up to 500 GeV with spectral index Γ=2.79±0.06.

  14. A Study of Oceans and Atmospheric Interactions Associated with Tropical Cyclone Activity using Earth Observing Technology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abdullah, Warith; Reddy, Remata

    From October 22nd to 30th, 2012 Hurricane Sandy was a huge storm of many abnormalities causing an estimated 50 billion dollars in damage. Tropical storm development states systems’ energy as product of warm sea surface temperatures (SST’s) and tropical cyclone heat potential (TCHP). Advances in Earth Observing (EO) technology, remote sensing and proxy remote sensing have allowed for accurate measurements of SST and TCHP information. In this study, we investigated rapid intensification of Sandy through EO applications for precipitable water vapor (PWAT), SST’s and TCHP during the period of October 27th. These data were obtained from NASA and NOAA satellites and NOAA National Buoy data center (NDBC). The Sensible Heat (Qs) fluxes were computed to determine available energy resulting from ocean-atmosphere interface. Buoy 41010, 120 NM east of Cape Canaveral at 0850 UTC measured 22.3 °C atmospheric temperatures and 27 °C SST, an interface of 4.7 °C. Sensible heat equation computed fluxes of 43.7 W/m2 at 982.0 mb central pressure. Sandy formed as late-season storm and near-surface air temperatures averaged > 21 °C according to NOAA/ESRL NCEP/NCAR reanalysis at 1000 mb and GOES 13 (EAST) geostationary water vapor imagery shows approaching cold front during October 27th. Sandy encountered massive dry air intrusion to S, SE and E quadrants of storm while travelling up U.S east coast but experienced no weakening. Cool, dry air intrusion was considered for PWAT investigation from closest sounding station during Oct. 27th 0900 - 2100 UTC at Charleston, SC station 72208. Measured PWAT totaled 42.97 mm, indicating large energy potential supply to the storm. The Gulf Stream was observed using NASA Short-term Prediction Research and Transition Center (SPoRT) MODIS SST analysis. The results show 5 °C warmer above average than surrounding cooler water, with > 25 °C water extent approximately 400 NM east of Chesapeake Bay and eddies > 26 °C. Results from sensible heat

  15. Transition to an oxygen-rich atmosphere with an extensive overshoot triggered by the Paleoproterozoic snowball Earth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harada, Mariko; Tajika, Eiichi; Sekine, Yasuhito

    2015-06-01

    The Earth is thought to have multiple stable, steady-states regarding climate modes and atmospheric oxygen levels. The Paleoproterozoic is a remarkable period in Earth's history because of the simultaneous occurrence of large climatic and redox transitions between steady states; i.e., snowball Earth glaciation and the rise of oxygen. Geochemical evidence suggests that the oxygen rise was a dynamic transition with an extensive, long-term overshoot. However, previous models have not explained the dynamics of the oxygen rise, leaving its causal mechanism poorly understood. In the present study, we suggest that the oxygen transition with an overshoot occurred in response to a climatic transition at the termination of the snowball glaciation. Biogeochemical cycle modelling indicates that prolonged super-greenhouse conditions and effective nutrient input to the ocean after the glaciation lead to high levels of primary productivity and burial of organic carbon. This causes an abrupt jump of oxygen levels within ∼104 yr after the glaciation and an extensive oxygen overshoot to the present atmospheric level. The overshoot persists for ∼108 yr because net consumption of oxygen in the atmosphere-ocean system is inefficient. We show that the post-glacial jump of oxygen levels occurred in biologically short timescale, which may have stimulated the ecological shift and/or biological innovations toward the prosperity of oxygen-dependent life.

  16. Research on Earth's rotation and the effect of atmospheric pressure on vertical deformation and sea level variability

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wahr, John

    1993-01-01

    The work done under NASA grant NAG5-485 included modelling the deformation of the earth caused by variations in atmospheric pressure. The amount of deformation near coasts is sensitive to the nature of the oceanic response to the pressure. The PSMSL (Permanent Service for Mean Sea Level) data suggest the response is inverted barometer at periods greater than a couple months. Green's functions were constructed to describe the perturbation of the geoid caused by atmospheric and oceanic loading and by the accompanying load-induced deformation. It was found that perturbation of up to 2 cm are possible. Ice mass balance data was used for continental glaciers to look at the glacial contributions to time-dependent changes in polar motion, the lod, the earth's gravitational field, the position of the earth's center-of-mass, and global sea level. It was found that there can be lateral, non-hydrostatic structure inside the fluid core caused by gravitational forcing from the mantle, from the inner core, or from topography at the core/mantle or inner core/outer core boundaries. The nutational and tidal response of a non-hydrostatic earth with a solid inner core was modeled. Monthly, global tide gauge data from PSMSL was used to look at the 18.6-year ocean tide, the 14-month pole tide, the oceanic response to pressure, the linear trend and inter-annual variability in the earth's gravity field, the global sea level rise, and the effects of post glacial rebound. The effects of mantle anelasticity on nutations, earth tides, and tidal variation in the lod was modeled. Results of this model can be used with Crustal Dynamics observations to look at the anelastic dissipation and dispersion at tidal periods. The effects of surface topography on various components of crustal deformation was also modeled, and numerical models were developed of post glacial rebound.

  17. Research on Earth's rotation and the effect of atmospheric pressure on vertical deformation and sea level variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wahr, John

    1993-03-01

    The work done under NASA grant NAG5-485 included modelling the deformation of the earth caused by variations in atmospheric pressure. The amount of deformation near coasts is sensitive to the nature of the oceanic response to the pressure. The PSMSL (Permanent Service for Mean Sea Level) data suggest the response is inverted barometer at periods greater than a couple months. Green's functions were constructed to describe the perturbation of the geoid caused by atmospheric and oceanic loading and by the accompanying load-induced deformation. It was found that perturbation of up to 2 cm are possible. Ice mass balance data was used for continental glaciers to look at the glacial contributions to time-dependent changes in polar motion, the lod, the earth's gravitational field, the position of the earth's center-of-mass, and global sea level. It was found that there can be lateral, non-hydrostatic structure inside the fluid core caused by gravitational forcing from the mantle, from the inner core, or from topography at the core/mantle or inner core/outer core boundaries. The nutational and tidal response of a non-hydrostatic earth with a solid inner core was modeled. Monthly, global tide gauge data from PSMSL was used to look at the 18.6-year ocean tide, the 14-month pole tide, the oceanic response to pressure, the linear trend and inter-annual variability in the earth's gravity field, the global sea level rise, and the effects of post glacial rebound. The effects of mantle anelasticity on nutations, earth tides, and tidal variation in the lod was modeled. Results of this model can be used with Crustal Dynamics observations to look at the anelastic dissipation and dispersion at tidal periods. The effects of surface topography on various components of crustal deformation was also modeled, and numerical models were developed of post glacial rebound.

  18. The signature of atmospheric tides in sub-daily variations of Earth rotation as unveiled by globally-gridded atmospheric angular momentum functions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schindelegger, M.; Böhm, J.; Salstein, D. A.; Schuh, H.

    2012-12-01

    Thermally-driven atmospheric tides provide a small but distinct contribution to shortperiod variations of Earth rotation parameters (ERP). The effect of diurnal and semi-diurnal tides, commonly denoted as S1 and S2, respectively, is in the range of 2 - 10 uas for polar motion and 2 - 10 uas for changes in length-of-day (LOD). Even though ocean tides represent a much more dominant driving agent for ERP fluctuations at short time scales, high-frequency atmospheric effects are non-negligible, particularly given the prospective measurement accuracy of space geodetic techniques. However, previous studies, such as Brzezinski et al. (2002), de Viron et al. (2005) or Schindelegger et al. (2011), have been noticeably inconclusive on the exact amplitude and phase values of S1 and S2 atmospheric excitation signals. This study aims at shedding light on the origin of these uncertainties with respect to the axial component of Earth's rotation vector by investigating times series of atmospheric angular momentum (AAM) functions that are given on global grids and computed from three-hourly meteorological data of the European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts (ECMWF). The signature of diurnal and semi-diurnal atmospheric tides is clearly visible in the gridded axial AAM functions, revealing a distinct spatial and temporal phase difference between pressure and wind tidal constituents of about ± π. It is shown that due to this counterbalance and the explicit axisymmetric spatial structure of S1 and S2, the net effect in sub-diurnal AAM (which is calculated from the global sum of gridded AAM functions) is always a small quantity, particularly sensitive to minor differences between the analysis fields of numerical weather models.

  19. Climate and atmospheric modeling studies. Climate applications of Earth and planetary observations. Chemistry of Earth and environment

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1990-01-01

    The research conducted during the past year in the climate and atmospheric modeling programs concentrated on the development of appropriate atmospheric and upper ocean models, and preliminary applications of these models. Principal models are a one-dimensional radiative-convective model, a three-dimensional global climate model, and an upper ocean model. Principal applications have been the study of the impact of CO2, aerosols and the solar 'constant' on climate. Progress was made in the 3-D model development towards physically realistic treatment of these processes. In particular, a map of soil classifications on 1 degree x 1 degree resolution has been digitized, and soil properties have been assigned to each soil type. Using this information about soil properties, a method was developed to simulate the hydraulic behavior of soils of the world. This improved treatment of soil hydrology, together with the seasonally varying vegetation cover, will provide a more realistic study of the role of the terrestrial biota in climate change. A new version of the climate model was created which follows the isotopes of water and sources of water (or colored water) throughout the planet. Each isotope or colored water source is a fraction of the climate model's water. It participates in condensation and surface evaporation at different fractionation rates and is transported by the dynamics. A major benefit of this project has been to improve the programming techniques and physical simulation of the water vapor budget of the climate model.

  20. New Instrumental Facilities to study High Energy Processes in the Sun, Interplanetary Space and their Effects in the Earth Atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Raulin, Jean-Pierre; Makhmutov, Vladimir

    We present a new instrumental facility to study the physical mechanisms of high-energy releases taking place in solar quiet and explosive active regions, and their signatures in the Earth's atmosphere. These facilities will be installed in the CASLEO (2550 m asl) observatory, and complement solar flare diagnostic obtained there at millimeter waves (45 and 90 GHZ), submillimeter waves (212 and 405 GHz), IR (30 THz), as well as X-ray radiation imprints in the ionosphere (VLF subionospheric propagation), and of energetic charged particles in Earth's atmosphere (Cosmic Ray CARPET sensor).Specifically, we propose to complement these existing instrumental facilities with a new detector of solar and atmospheric neutrons, a gamma-ray scintillation device, and ELF/VLF wave sensors. The main objectives are: (i) to better characterize the high-frequency radio and high-energy photon flare spectra, in order to provide new clues on the emission mechanism resulting in submillimeter and THz radiation which are still unexplained; (ii) to provide a continuous monitoring of solar energetic phenomena and investigate if they are more frequent than what we do observe nowadays; (iii) to investigate the causal relationship between atmospheric phenomena as lightning occurrence, high-energy photon and neutron production, Terrestrial Gamma-ray Flashes, and cosmic ray fluxes.

  1. The Earth's Middle Atmosphere: COSPAR Plenary Meeting, 29th, Washington, DC, 28 Aug.-5 Sep., 1992

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Grosse, W. L. (Editor); Ghazi, A. (Editor); Geller, M. A. (Editor); Shepherd, G. G. (Editor)

    1994-01-01

    The conference presented the results from the Upper Atmosphere Research Satellite (UARS) in the areas of wind, temperature, composition, and energy input into the upper atmosphere. Also presented is the current status of validation of the UARS temperature and wind instruments measuring at and above the menopause. The two UARS instruments involved were the High Resolution Doppler Imager (HRDI) and the WIND Imaging Interferometer (WINDII). Papers are presented covering almost all aspects of middle atmospheric science, including dynamics, layering in the middle atmosphere, atmospheric composition, solar and geomagnetic effects, electrodynamics, and the ionosphere.

  2. Experiment on the Vernov satellite: Transient energetic processes in the Earth's atmosphere and magnetosphere. Part I: Description of the experiment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Panasyuk, M. I.; Svertilov, S. I.; Bogomolov, V. V.; Garipov, G. K.; Barinova, V. O.; Bogomolov, A. V.; Veden'kin, N. N.; Golovanov, I. A.; Iyudin, A. F.; Kalegaev, V. V.; Klimov, P. A.; Kovtyukh, A. S.; Kuznetsova, E. A.; Morozenko, V. S.; Morozov, O. V.; Myagkova, I. N.; Petrov, V. L.; Prokhorov, A. V.; Rozhkov, G. V.; Sigaeva, E. A.; Khrenov, B. A.; Yashin, I. V.; Klimov, S. I.; Vavilov, D. I.; Grushin, V. A.; Grechko, T. V.; Khartov, V. V.; Kudryashov, V. A.; Bortnikov, S. V.; Mzhel'skiy, P. V.; Papkov, A. P.; Krasnopeev, S. V.; Krug, V. V.; Korepanov, V. E.; Belyaev, S.; Demidov, A.; Ferenz, Ch.; Bodnar, L.; Szegedi, P.; Rotkel, H.; Moravskiy, M.; Park, Il; Jeon, Jin-A.; Kim, Ji-In; Lee, Jik

    2016-07-01

    The program of physical studies on the Vernov satellite launched on July 8, 2014 into a polar (640 × 830 km) solar-synchronous orbit with an inclination of 98.4° is presented. We described the complex of scientific equipment on this satellite in detail, including multidirectional gamma-ray detectors, electron spectrometers, red and ultra-violet detectors, and wave probes. The experiment on the Vernov satellite is mainly aimed at a comprehensive study of the processes of generation of transient phenomena in the optical and gamma-ray ranges in the Earth's atmosphere (such as high-altitude breakdown on runaway relativistic electrons), the study of the action on the atmosphere of electrons precipitated from the radiation belts, and low- and high-frequency electromagnetic waves of both space and atmospheric origin.

  3. Photochemistry of CO and H2O - Analysis of laboratory experiments and applications to the prebiotic earth's atmosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wen, Jun-Shan; Pinto, Joseph P.; Yung, Yuk L.

    1989-01-01

    The role photochemical reactions in the early earth's atmosphere played in the prebiotic synthesis of simple organic molecules was examined, extending an earlier calculation of formaldehyde production rates to more reduced carbon species, such as methanol, methane, and acetaldehyde. The experimental results of Bar-Nun and Chang (1983) are simulated as an aid in the construction of the photochemical scheme and as a way of validating the model. The results indicate that some fraction of CO2 and H2 present in the primitive atmosphere could have been converted to simple organic molecules. The exact amount is dependent on the partial pressure of CO2 and H2 in the atmosphere and on what assumptions are made concerning the shape of the absorption spectra of CO2 and H2O.

  4. Seasonal Variations of the Earth's Gravitational Field: An Analysis of Atmospheric and Ocean Tidal Excitation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dong, D.; Gross, R. S.; Dickey, J. O.

    1994-01-01

    Laser ranging measurements to single satellite are sensitive to the Earth's gravitational field and its temporal variations. Using 13 years (1980-1992) of LAGEOS I laser ranging data, we have recovered monthly mean linear combinations of even and odd degree zonal spherical harmonic coefficients of the Earth's gravitational field.

  5. Wind and Temperature Spectrometry of the Upper Atmosphere in Low-Earth Orbit

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Herrero, Federico

    2011-01-01

    Wind and Temperature Spectrometry (WATS) is a new approach to measure the full wind vector, temperature, and relative densities of major neutral species in the Earth's thermosphere. The method uses an energy-angle spectrometer moving through the tenuous upper atmosphere to measure directly the angular and energy distributions of the air stream that enters the spectrometer. The angular distribution gives the direction of the total velocity of the air entering the spectrometer, and the energy distribution gives the magnitude of the total velocity. The wind velocity vector is uniquely determined since the measured total velocity depends on the wind vector and the orbiting velocity vector. The orbiting spectrometer moves supersonically, Mach 8 or greater, through the air and must point within a few degrees of its orbital velocity vector (the ram direction). Pointing knowledge is critical; for example, pointing errors 0.1 lead to errors of about 10 m/s in the wind. The WATS method may also be applied without modification to measure the ion-drift vector, ion temperature, and relative ion densities of major ionic species in the ionosphere. In such an application it may be called IDTS: Ion-Drift Temperature Spectrometry. A spectrometer-based coordinate system with one axis instantaneously pointing along the ram direction makes it possible to transform the Maxwellian velocity distribution of the air molecules to a Maxwellian energy-angle distribution for the molecular flux entering the spectrometer. This implementation of WATS is called the gas kinetic method (GKM) because it is applied to the case of the Maxwellian distribution. The WATS method follows from the recognition that in a supersonic platform moving at 8,000 m/s, the measurement of small wind velocities in the air on the order of a few 100 m/s and less requires precise knowledge of the angle of incidence of the neutral atoms and molecules. The same is true for the case of ion-drift measurements. WATS also

  6. A TEOM (tm) particulate monitor for comet dust, near Earth space, and planetary atmospheres

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1988-01-01

    Scientific missions to comets, near earth space, and planetary atmospheres require particulate and mass accumulation instrumentation for both scientific and navigation purposes. The Rupprecht & Patashnick tapered element oscillating microbalance can accurately measure both mass flux and mass distribution of particulates over a wide range of particle sizes and loadings. Individual particles of milligram size down to a few picograms can be resolved and counted, and the accumulation of smaller particles or molecular deposition can be accurately measured using the sensors perfected and toughened under this contract. No other sensor has the dynamic range or sensitivity attained by these picogram direct mass measurement sensors. The purpose of this contract was to develop and implement reliable and repeatable manufacturing methods; build and test prototype sensors; and outline a quality control program. A dust 'thrower' was to be designed and built, and used to verify performance. Characterization and improvement of the optical motion detection system and drive feedback circuitry was to be undertaken, with emphasis on reliability, low noise, and low power consumption. All the goals of the contract were met or exceeded. An automated glass puller was built and used to make repeatable tapered elements. Materials and assembly methods were standardized, and controllers and calibrated fixtures were developed and used in all phases of preparing, coating and assembling the sensors. Quality control and reliability resulted from the use of calibrated manufacturing equipment with measurable working parameters. Thermal and vibration testing of completed prototypes showed low temperature sensitivity and high vibration tolerance. An electrostatic dust thrower was used in vacuum to throw particles from 2 x 10(exp 6) g to 7 x 10(exp -12) g in size. Using long averaging times, particles as small as 0.7 to 4 x 10(exp 11) g were weighted to resolutions in the 5 to 9 x 10(exp -13) g range

  7. Design of a Slab Waveguide Multiaperture Fourier Spectrometer for Water Vapor Measurements in Earth's Atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sinclair, Kenneth; Florjańczyk, Mirosław; Solheim, Brian; Scott, Alan; Quine, Ben; Cheben, Pavel

    Concept, theory and design of a new type of waveguide device, a multiaperture Fourier-transform planar waveguide spectrometer[1], implemented as a prototype instrument is pre-sented. The spectrometer's objective is to demonstrate the ability of the new slab waveguide technology for application in remote sensing instruments[2]. The spectrometer will use a limb viewing configuration to detect the 1.36um waveband allowing concentrations of water vapor in earth's atmosphere to be measured[3]. The most challenging aspects of the design, assembly and calibration are presented. Focus will be given to the effects of packaging the spectrometer and interfacing to the detector array. Stress-induced birefringence will affect the performance of the waveguides, therefore the design of a stress-free mounting over a range of temperatures is important. Spectral retrieval algo-rithms will have to correct for expected fabrication errors in the waveguides. Data processing algorithms will also be developed to correct for non-uniformities of input brightness through the array, making use of MMI output couplers to capture both the in-phase and anti-phase interferometer outputs. A performance assessment of an existing breadboard spectrometer will demonstrate the capability of the instrument. REFERENCES 1. M. Florjáczyk, P. Cheben, S. Janz, A. Scott, B. Solheim, and D.-X. Xu, "Multiaper-n ture planar waveguide spectrometer formed by arrayed Mach-Zehnder interferometers," Opt. Expr. 15(26), 18176-18189 (2007). 2. M. Florjáczyk, P. Cheben, S. Janz, B. Lamontagne, J. n Lapointe, A. Scott, B. Solheim, and D.-X. Xu, "Slab waveguiode spatial heterodyne spectrom-eters for remote sensing from space," Optical sensors 2009. Proceedings of the SPIE, Volume 7356 (2009)., pp. 73560V-73560V-7 (2009). 3. A. Scott, M. Florjáczyk, P. Cheben, S. Janz, n B. Solheim, and D.-X. Xu, "Micro-interferometer with high throughput for remote sensing." MOEMS and Miniaturized Systems VIII. Proceedings of the SPIE

  8. Distribution of N2O in the atmosphere under global warming - a simulation study with the MPI Earth System Model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kracher, Daniela; Manzini, Elisa; Reick, Christian H.; Schultz, Martin; Stein, Olaf

    2014-05-01

    Climate change is driven by an increasing release of anthropogenic greenhouse gases (GHGs) such as carbon dioxide and nitrous oxide (N2O). Besides fossil fuel burning, also land use change and land management are anthropogenic sources of GHGs. Especially inputs of reactive nitrogen via fertilizer and deposition lead to enhanced emissions of N2O. One effect of a drastic future increase in surface temperature is a modification of atmospheric circulation, e.g. an accelerated Brewer Dobson circulation affecting the exchange between troposphere and stratosphere. N2O is inert in the troposphere and decayed only in the stratosphere. Thus, changes in atmospheric circulation, especially changes in the exchange between troposphere and stratosphere, will affect the atmospheric transport, decay, and distribution of N2O. In our study we assess the impact of global warming on atmospheric circulation and implied effects on the distribution and lifetime of atmospheric N2O. As terrestrial N2O emissions are highly determined by inputs of reactive nitrogen - the location of which being determined by human choice - we examine in particular the importance of latitudinal source regions of N2O for its global distribution. For this purpose we apply the Max Planck Institute Earth System Model, MPI-ESM. MPI-ESM consists of the atmospheric general circulation model ECHAM, the land surface model JSBACH, and MPIOM/HAMOCC representing ocean circulation and ocean biogeochemistry. Prognostic atmospheric N2O concentrations in MPI-ESM are determined by land N2O emissions, ocean N2O exchange and atmospheric tracer transport. As stratospheric chemistry is not explicitly represented in MPI-ESM, stratospheric decay rates of N2O are prescribed from a MACC MOZART simulation.

  9. High-frequency excitation of earth rotation parameters by the atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xie, Bo-Quan; Zheng, Da-Wei

    1996-02-01

    Using the ERP series from space geodetic measurement in the period 1983-1992 and the AAM series from global meteorological data we analyzed the high-frequency (timescales below one month) excitation of LOD and polar drift by the atmosphere. We found: 1) The atmosphere has an effect on the estimated value of the high-frequency tides of the LOD component, whereas the variation of the tidal distortion parameter k/c is caused by non-atmospheric factors. 2) The atmosphere can account for most part of the non-tidal variation of LOD below 30 d. 3) The high-frequency variations below 30 d of the polar drift are mainly excited by the atmosphere. The atmosphere can contribute as much as 70% to the 27 d-variation in the x-component.

  10. Angular radiation models for Earth-atmosphere system. Volume 1: Shortwave radiation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Suttles, J. T.; Green, R. N.; Minnis, P.; Smith, G. L.; Staylor, W. F.; Wielicki, B. A.; Walker, I. J.; Young, D. F.; Taylor, V. R.; Stowe, L. L.

    1988-01-01

    Presented are shortwave angular radiation models which are required for analysis of satellite measurements of Earth radiation, such as those fro the Earth Radiation Budget Experiment (ERBE). The models consist of both bidirectional and directional parameters. The bidirectional parameters are anisotropic function, standard deviation of mean radiance, and shortwave-longwave radiance correlation coefficient. The directional parameters are mean albedo as a function of Sun zenith angle and mean albedo normalized to overhead Sun. Derivation of these models from the Nimbus 7 ERB (Earth Radiation Budget) and Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite (GOES) data sets is described. Tabulated values and computer-generated plots are included for the bidirectional and directional modes.

  11. Angular radiation models for earth-atmosphere system. Volume 2: Longwave radiation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Suttles, J. T.; Green, R. N.; Smith, G. L.; Wielicki, B. A.; Walker, I. J.; Taylor, V. R.; Stowe, L. L.

    1989-01-01

    The longwave angular radiation models that are required for analysis of satellite measurements of Earth radiation, such as those from the Earth Radiation Budget Experiment (ERBE) are presented. The models contain limb-darkening characteristics and mean fluxes. Limb-darkening characteristics are the longwave anisotropic factor and the standard deviation of the longwave radiance. Derivation of these models from the Nimbus 7 ERB (Earth Radiation Budget) data set is described. Tabulated values and computer-generated plots are included for the limb-darkening and mean-flux models.

  12. The NASA Marshall Space Flight Center Earth Global Reference Atmospheric Model-2010 Version

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Leslie, F. W.; Justus, C. G.

    2011-01-01

    Reference or standard atmospheric models have long been used for design and mission planning of various aerospace systems. The NASA Marshall Space Flight Center Global Reference Atmospheric Model was developed in response to the need for a design reference atmosphere that provides complete global geographical variability and complete altitude coverage (surface to orbital altitudes), as well as complete seasonal and monthly variability of the thermodynamic variables and wind components. In addition to providing the geographical, height, and monthly variation of the mean atmospheric state, it includes the ability to simulate spatial and temporal perturbations.

  13. Ongoing Efforts to Analyze and Use Atmospheric and Oceanic Angular Momentum Datasets for Predictions of Earth Orientation.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stamatakos, Nicholas; Salstein, David; McCarthy, Dennis; Eubanks, Marshall

    2016-04-01

    We present our ongoing investigation of the use of U.S-produced atmospheric and oceanic angular momentum (AAM and OAM) estimates to improve the determination of near real-time Earth rotation and polar motion parameters and their short-term predictions. Previous investigations provided evidence that the use of AAM and OAM data sets could improve short-term EOP predictions for polar motion and possibly for UT1-UTC. The longer AAM and OAM time series created from the National Centers for Environmental Prediction (NCEP) reanalysis and the Estimating the Climate and Circulation of the Ocean (ECCO) models respectively are considered and used to determine a baseline (best-case) improvement in Earth rotation predictions. The shorter sets of data supplied by the Navy Global Environmental Model (NAVGEM) AAM and Hybrid Coordinate Ocean Model (HYCOM) OAM are then compared to the NCEP and ECCO data to estimate how well these models might be used to aid Earth Orientation predictions. The combination of NAVGEM and HYCOM model series should be internally consistent as the NAVGEM atmospheric analyses are used as forcing for the Navy HYCOM model.

  14. Seasonal Variations of the Earth's Gravitational Field: An Analysis of Atmospheric Pressure, Ocean Tidal, and Surface Water Excitation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dong, D,; Gross, R.S.; Dickey, J.

    1996-01-01

    Monthly mean gravitational field parameters (denoted here as C(sub even)) that represent linear combinations of the primarily even degree zonal spherical harmonic coefficients of the Earth's gravitational field have been recovered using LAGEOS I data and are compared with those derived from gridded global surface pressure data of the National meteorological center (NMC) spanning 1983-1992. The effect of equilibrium ocean tides and surface water variations are also considered. Atmospheric pressure and surface water fluctuations are shown to be the dominant cause of observed annual C(sub even) variations. Closure with observations is seen at the 1sigma level when atmospheric pressure, ocean tide and surface water effects are include. Equilibrium ocean tides are shown to be the main source of excitation at the semiannual period with closure at the 1sigma level seen when both atmospheric pressure and ocean tide effects are included. The inverted barometer (IB) case is shown to give the best agreement with the observation series. The potential of the observed C(sub even) variations for monitoring mass variations in the polar regions of the Earth and the effect of the land-ocean mask in the IB calculation are discussed.

  15. Upper Atmospheric Research Satellite (UARS) ground data system - The first operational data system for the Mission to Planet Earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Herring, Ellen L.; Smith, Janice K.; Taylor, K. D.

    1993-01-01

    The initiation of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Mission to Planet Earth was realized with the activation of the Upper Atmosphere Research Satellite (LIARS) in mid-September 1991 following deployment from the Shuttle Transport System (STS) - 48. The UARS provides the first comprehensive study of the chemistry and dynamics of the upper atmosphere. The UARS ground data system provides the capabilities required to support upper atmospheric studies in a timely and flexible manner. The UARS ground data system policy and implementation plan incorporated by the UARS Project team provided the flexibility necessary to be able to respond to changing priorities and requirements and to permit the ground data system to evolve far beyond initial expectations. This paper describes the policies and plans in place during the initial design and implementation phases and provides an overview of the UARS ground data system. The paper then addresses the changing UARS ground data system design and implementation priorities, the early mission experiences instrumental in the achievement of higher than expected goals, and a brief look at the future for UARS, the first Mission to Planet Earth.

  16. Validation of Earth atmosphere models using solar EUV observations from the CORONAS and PROBA2 satellites in occultation mode

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Slemzin, Vladimir; Ulyanov, Artyom; Gaikovich, Konstantin; Kuzin, Sergey; Pertsov, Andrey; Berghmans, David; Dominique, Marie

    2016-02-01

    Aims: Knowledge of properties of the Earth's upper atmosphere is important for predicting the lifetime of low-orbit spacecraft as well as for planning operation of space instruments whose data may be distorted by atmospheric effects. The accuracy of the models commonly used for simulating the structure of the atmosphere is limited by the scarcity of the observations they are based on, so improvement of these models requires validation under different atmospheric conditions. Measurements of the absorption of the solar extreme ultraviolet (EUV) radiation in the upper atmosphere below 500 km by instruments operating on low-Earth orbits (LEO) satellites provide efficient means for such validation as well as for continuous monitoring of the upper atmosphere and for studying its response to the solar and geomagnetic activity. Method: This paper presents results of measurements of the solar EUV radiation in the 17 nm wavelength band made with the SPIRIT and TESIS telescopes on board the CORONAS satellites and the SWAP telescope on board the PROBA2 satellite in the occulted parts of the satellite orbits. The transmittance profiles of the atmosphere at altitudes between 150 and 500 km were derived from different phases of solar activity during solar cycles 23 and 24 in the quiet state of the magnetosphere and during the development of a geomagnetic storm. We developed a mathematical procedure based on the Tikhonov regularization method for solution of ill-posed problems in order to retrieve extinction coefficients from the transmittance profiles. The transmittance profiles derived from the data and the retrieved extinction coefficients are compared with simulations carried out with the NRLMSISE-00 atmosphere model maintained by Naval Research Laboratory (USA) and the DTM-2013 model developed at CNES in the framework of the FP7 project ATMOP. Results: Under quiet and slightly disturbed magnetospheric conditions during high and low solar activity the extinction coefficients

  17. ArgusE: Design and Development of a Micro-Spectrometer used for Remote Earth and Atmospheric Observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tsouvaltsidis, C.; Bernari, G.; Salem, N.; Quine, B.; Lee, R.

    In this paper we will discuss the design and development of the ArgusE. The ArgusE is a micro-spectrometer which has been developed for Earth and atmospheric monitoring purposes. The project is primarily focused on using the ArgusE micro-spectrometer in order to ascertain whether it is possible to obtain surface soil moisture content measurements from space using its short-wave infrared detector. The secondary objective of the project is to quantify greenhouse gases that could be studied within new spectral range. The ArgusE is built on Argus 1000 micro-spectrometer design and spaceflight heritage. Currently, on the CanX-2 mission launched in 2008, the Argus 1000 micro-spectrometer observes the infrared solar radiation reflected by Earth surface targets as small as 1.5 km2 and the atmosphere (aerosols, clouds, and constituents). Over the past five years that Argus 1000 has been in operation, we have accumulated more than 200 observations from a series of land and ocean targets. It was followed by the SRMSAT, launched in 2011 (India). Currently all space-based Argus 1000s are collecting Earth and atmospheric observation data within the 0.9-1.7 micrometers spectral range, with special focus on CO2 and other greenhouse gases, and cloud and coastline detection. GENSPECT, a line-by-line radiative Matlab-based toolbox is used to calculate gas absorption and emissivity for a custom grouping of atmospheric gases. Given gas types and amounts, temperature, pressure, path length and frequency range for an atmosphere or laboratory cell, GENSPECT computes the spectral characteristics of the gas mixture. The resulting models used to discover the potential monitoring of atmospheric greenhouse gases and topical soil moisture content will be discussed and displayed graphically. In addition, this paper will showcase the chassis redesign and change of electronics which allow the ArgusE to now showcase the spectral region of 1.7 to 2.2 micrometers. It will also discuss the laboratory

  18. Techniques for computing regional radiant emittances of the earth-atmosphere system from observations by wide-angle satellite radiometers, phase 3

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pina, J. F.; House, F. B.

    1975-01-01

    Radiometers on earth orbiting satellites measure the exchange of radiant energy between the earth-atmosphere (E-A) system and space at observation points in space external to the E-A system. Observations by wideangle, spherical and flat radiometers are analyzed and interpreted with regard to the general problem of the earth energy budget (EEB) and to the problem of determining the energy budget of regions smaller than the field of view (FOV) of these radiometers.

  19. The December 26, 2004, tsunami on Sumatra Island as a source of internal gravity waves in the earth's atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mikhailova, G. A.; Mikhailov, Yu. M.; Kapustina, O. V.

    2016-09-01

    Records of the coastal mareographs during the December 26, 2004, tsunami are used to study the fine structure of the tsunami wave power spectra. It is shown that a series of maxima is observed in their spectra near the source in a range of internal gravity wave frequencies of 0.2-1.2 mHz, which coincides with the frequencies of the natural oscillations of the Earth. This experimental finding enables us to propose a possible physical mechanism for the formation of tsunami waves as a result of oscillations in the sea bottom at these frequencies. Internal gravity waves in the Earth's atmosphere excited in this way are found in the variations of the total electron content that resulted from this powerful earthquake.

  20. Rare earths: atmospheric signatures for oil-fired power plants and refineries.

    PubMed

    Olmez, I; Gordon, G E

    1985-09-01

    The concentration pattern of rare earth elements on fine airborne particles (less than 2.5 micrometers in diameter) is distorted from the crustal abundance pattern in areas influenced by emissions from oil-fired plants and refineries. For example, the ratio of lanthanum to samarium is often greater than 20 compared to a crustal ratio less than 6. The unusual pattern apparently results from the distribution of rare earths in zeolite catalysts used in refining oil. Oil industry emissions perturb the rare earth pattern even at remote locations such as the Mauna Loa Observatory in Hawaii. Rare earth ratios are probably better for long-range tracing of oil emissions than vanadium and nickel concentrations because the ratios of rare earths on fine particles are probably not influenced by deposition and other fractionating processes. Emissions from oil-fired plants can be differentiated from those of refineries on an urban scale by the much smaller amounts of vanadium in the latter. PMID:17782528

  1. Influence of the atmospheric masses on the gravitational field of the earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Christodoulidis, D. C.

    1979-01-01

    Seasonal and latitude dependent corrections to the gravity and height anomalies are developed in order to account for the neglect of the atmospheric masses outside the geoid, when using Stokes' equation. It is shown that the atmospheric correction to gravity at sea level is almost constant, equal to 0.871 mgals with a variation of 2 microgals whereas the height anomaly correction varies between -0.1 cm and -1.3 cm. Further, when the combined latitudinal/seasonal dependence is neglected in the atmospheric corrections, the maximum error introduced is on the order of 40 microgals for the gravity corrections and 0.7 cm for the height anomaly corrections.

  2. Miniature Tunable Laser Spectrometers for Quantifying Atmospheric Trace Gases, Water Resources, Earth Back-Contamination, and In Situ Resource Utilization

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Webster, Chris; Blacksberg, Jordana; Flesch, Greg; Keymeulen, Didier; Christensen, Lance; Forouhar, Siamak

    2012-01-01

    The Tunable Laser Spectrometers (TLS) technique has seen wide applicability in gas measurement and analysis for atmospheric analysis, industrial, commercial and health monitoring and space applications. In Earth science using balloons and aircraft over 2 decades, several groups (JPL, NASA Langley & Ames, NOAA, Harvard U., etc) have demonstrated the technique for ozone hole studies, lab kinetics measurements, cloud physics and transport, climate change in the ice record. The recent availability of high-power (mW) room temperature lasers (TDL, IC, QC) has enabled miniaturized, high-sensitivity spectrometers for industry and space (1) Mars, Titan, Venus, Saturn, Moon (2) Commercial isotope ratio spectrometers are replacing bulkier, complex isotope ratio mass spectrometers.

  3. Comment on the paper 'On the influx of small comets into the earth's upper atmosphere. I - Observations'

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chubb, T. A.

    1986-01-01

    The observations of transient decreases or holes in the EUV dayglow reported by Frank et al. (1986) and attributed to an influx of small comets into the earth atmosphere are discussed critically. The techniques used in acquiring and analyzing the observational data are examined, and it is argued that the decreases are probably instrument artifacts. A critique of the geophysical basis of the comet hypothesis is also included. In a reply by Frank et al., the instrument-artifact argument is rejected, in part on the basis of the statistical properties of the holes observed. Additional observational data are presented in graphs and dynamics Explorer 1 images are analyzed in detail.

  4. Estimate of Top-of-Atmosphere Albedo for a Molecular Atmosphere over Ocean using Clouds and the Earth's Radiant Energy System (CERES) Measurements

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kato, S.; Loeb, N. G.; Rutledge, C. K.

    2002-01-01

    The shortwave broadband albedo at the top of a molecular atmosphere over ocean between 40deg N and 40deg S is estimated using radiance measurements from the Clouds and the Earth's Radiant Energy System (CERES) instrument and the Visible Infrared Scanner (VIRS) aboard the Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM) satellite. The albedo monotonically increases from 0.059 at a solar zenith angle of 10deg to 0.107 at a solar zenith angle of 60deg. The estimated uncertainty in the albedo is 3.5 x 10(exp -3) caused by the uncertainty in CERES-derived irradiances, uncertainty in VIRS-derived aerosol optical thicknesses, variations in ozone and water vapor, and variations in surface wind speed. The estimated uncertainty is similar in magnitude to the standard deviation of 0.003 that is derived from 72 areas divided by 20deg latitude by 20deg longitude grid boxes. The empirically estimated albedo is compared with the modeled albedo using a radiative transfer model combined with an ocean surface bidirectional reflectivity model. The modeled albedo with standard tropical atmosphere is 0.061 and 0.111 at the solar zenith angles of 10deg and 60deg, respectively. This empirically estimated albedo can be used to estimate the direct radiative effect of aerosols at the top of the atmosphere over oceans.

  5. Temporal variation of the earth's low-degree zonal gravitational field caused by atmospheric mass redistribution - 1980-1988

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chao, B. Fong; Au, Andrew Y.

    1991-01-01

    Temporal variations in the low-degree zonal harmonics of the earth's gravitational field have recently been observed by satellite laser ranging. A host of geophysical processes contribute to these variations. The present paper studies quantitatively a prime contributor, atmospheric mass redistribution, using ECMWF global surface pressure data for the period of 1980-1988. The annual and semiannual amplitudes and phases of the zonal J(l) coefficient with degree l = 2-6 with and without the oceanic inverted-barometer (IB) effect are computed to obtain the predicted effects on the orbit nodal residuals of Lageos and Starlette. These predicted values are then compared with observations. It is found that the atmospheric influence, combined with the hydrological influence agree well with the Lageos observation for the annual term. The corresponding match appears poorer for Starlette.

  6. A Massively Parallel Particle Code for Rarefied Ionized and Neutral Gas Flows in Earth and Planetary Atmospheres, Ionospheres and Magnetospheres

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Combi, Michael R.

    2004-01-01

    In order to understand the global structure, dynamics, and physical and chemical processes occurring in the upper atmospheres, exospheres, and ionospheres of the Earth, the other planets, comets and planetary satellites and their interactions with their outer particles and fields environs, it is often necessary to address the fundamentally non-equilibrium aspects of the physical environment. These are regions where complex chemistry, energetics, and electromagnetic field influences are important. Traditional approaches are based largely on hydrodynamic or magnetohydrodynamic MHD) formulations and are very important and highly useful. However, these methods often have limitations in rarefied physical regimes where the molecular collision rates and ion gyrofrequencies are small and where interactions with ionospheres and upper neutral atmospheres are important.

  7. The influence of formation material properties on the response of water levels in wells to Earth tides and atmospheric loading

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rojstaczer, S.; Agnew, D.C.

    1989-01-01

    The water level in an open well can change in response to deformation of the surrounding material, either because of applied strains (tidal or tectonic) or surface loading by atmospheric pressure changes. Under conditions of no vertical fluid flow and negligible well bore storage (static-confined conditions), the sensitivities to these effects depend on the elastic properties and porosity which characterize the surrounding medium. The hydraulic diffusivity which governs pressure diffusion in response to surface loading is slightly smaller than that which governs fluid flow in response to applied strain. Analysis of the static-confined response of five wells to atmospheric loading and Earth tides gives generally reasonable estimates for material properties. -from Authors

  8. Earth Science Data and Applications for K-16 Education from the NASA Langley Atmospheric Science Data Center

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Phelps, C. S.; Chambers, L. H.; Alston, E. J.; Moore, S. W.; Oots, P. C.

    2005-05-01

    NASA's Science Mission Directorate aims to stimulate public interest in Earth system science and to encourage young scholars to consider careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics. NASA's Atmospheric Science Data Center (ASDC) at Langley Research Center houses over 700 data sets related to Earth's radiation budget, clouds, aerosols and tropospheric chemistry that are being produced to increase academic understanding of the natural and anthropogenic perturbations that influence global climate change. However, barriers still exist in the use of these actual satellite observations by educators in the classroom to supplement the educational process. Thus, NASA is sponsoring the "Mentoring and inquirY using NASA Data on Atmospheric and earth science for Teachers and Amateurs" (MY NASA DATA) project to systematically support educational activities by reducing the ASDC data holdings to `microsets' that can be easily accessible and explored by the K-16 educators and students. The microsets are available via Web site (http://mynasadata.larc.nasa.gov) with associated lesson plans, computer tools, data information pages, and a science glossary. A MY NASA DATA Live Access Server (LAS) has been populated with ASDC data such that users can create custom microsets online for desired time series, parameters and geographical regions. The LAS interface is suitable for novice to advanced users, teachers or students. The microsets may be visual representations of data or text output for spreadsheet analysis. Currently, over 148 parameters from the Clouds and the Earth's Radiant Energy System (CERES), Multi-angle Imaging SpectroRadiometer (MISR), Surface Radiation Budget (SRB), Tropospheric Ozone Residual (TOR) and the International Satellite Cloud Climatology Project (ISCCP) are available and provide important information on clouds, fluxes and cycles in the Earth system. Additionally, a MY NASA DATA OPeNDAP server has been established to facilitate file transfer of

  9. Goose Bay radar observations of Earth-reflected, atmospheric gravity waves in the high-latitude ionosphere

    SciTech Connect

    Samson, J.C.; Greenwald, R.A.; Ruohoniemi, J.M.; Frey, A.; Baker, K.B. )

    1990-06-01

    In the late fall and early winter, The Johns Hopkins University HF radar at Goose Bay, Labrador, observes the effects of atmospheric gravity waves on radar transmissions that are obliquely reflected from the ionosphere and subsequently backscattered from the Earth's surface. The waves exist under a wide variety of geomagnetic conditions; however, they are particularly noticeable under quiet conditions (O {le} Kp {le} 1 +). The clearest signatures of the waves are spatially localized enhancements in the backscattered power and quasi-periodic fluctuations in the backscatter powers, Doppler velocities, and reflection heights. The waves are generally observed during daylight hours and propagate equatorward from regions of high-latitude ionospheric backscatter that are located near the ionospheric convection reversal boundary. The gravity waves appear to be generated just equatorward of the dayside flow-reversal boundary in the vicinity of the auroral electrojet at altitudes of 115 to 135 km and propagate approximately perpendicular to the boundary along azimuths ranging from 156{degree} to 180{degree}. The waves propagate obliquely downward through the lower atmosphere until they are reflected by the Earth's surface back into the upper atmosphere. The frequencies associated with these gravity waves cover the range of 0.3 to 0.6 mHz, with wavelengths of 300 to 500 km, and with average phase velocities of 110 to 180 m/s. The maximum phase speeds are 270 to 300 m/s, which is slightly less than the speed of sound in the lower atmosphere. Poleward-propagating gravity waves are sometimes observed under disturbed conditions when the polar cap and convection reversal boundary have expanded equatorward.

  10. A simple method to compute the change in earth-atmosphere radiative balance due to a stratospheric aerosol layer

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lenoble, J.; Tanre, D.; Deschamps, P. Y.; Herman, M.

    1982-01-01

    A computer code was developed in terms of a three-layer model for the earth-atmosphere system, using a two-stream approximation for the troposphere and stratosphere. The analysis was limited to variable atmosphere loading by solar radiation over an unperturbed section of the atmosphere. The scattering atmosphere above a Lambertian ground layer was considered in order to derive the planar albedo and the spherical albedo. Attention was given to the influence of the aerosol optical thickness in the stratosphere, the single scattering albedo and asymmetry factor, and the sublayer albedo. Calculations were performed of the zonal albedo and the planetary radiation balance, taking into account a stratospheric aerosol layer containing H2SO4 droplets and volcanic ash. The resulting ground temperature disturbance was computed using a Budyko (1969) climate model. Local decreases in the albedo in the summer were observed in high latitudes, implying a heating effect of the aerosol. An accompanying energy loss of 23-27 W/sq m was projected, which translates to surface temperature decreases of either 1.1 and 0.45 C, respectively, for background and volcanic aerosols.

  11. Correlations and linkages between the sun and the earth's atmosphere: Needed measurements and observations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kellogg, W. W.

    1975-01-01

    A study was conducted to identify the sequence of processes that lead from some change in solar input to the earth to a change in tropospheric circulation and weather. Topics discussed include: inputs from the sun, the solar wind, and the magnetosphere; bremsstrahlung, ionizing radiation, cirrus clouds, thunderstorms, wave propagation, and gravity waves.

  12. The Guara Campaign: Rocket-Radar Investigations of the Earth's Upper Atmosphere at the Magnetic and Geographic Equators

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pfaff, Robert F., Jr.; Goldberg, Richard A.; Schmidlin, F. J.; Sobral, J. H. A.; Abdu, M.; Trivedi, N.; Swartz, W. E.; LaBelle, J. W.; Larsen, M. F.

    1999-01-01

    The Guara Campaign consisted of a series of sounding rockets that were launched from August to October, 1994 at a new launch facility at Alcantara, Brazil, which is within one degree of the Earth's magnetic equator. The campaign was based on focused scientific experiments designed to investigate the electrodynamics and irregularities in the ionosphere and mesosphere at the Earth's magnetic equator and to study their relationship with neutral upper atmosphere motions. In all, 13 large sounding rockets and 20 small meteorological rockets were launched as part of four different experiment groups designed to investigate: (1) the daytime equatorial electrojet, (2) very high altitude Spread-F processes, (3) sunset electrodynamics, and (4) middle atmosphere-thermosphere coupling at the equator. The instrumentation on the sounding rockets varied with each investigation, but primarily included experiments to measure electric fields, currents, plasma densities,- neutral winds, neutral densities and temperatures, and ionospheric instabilities. All of the experiments utilized ground-based scientific instruments including a VHF backscatter radar interferometer, magnetometers, ionosondes, and scintillation receivers. An overview of each investigation is provided, along with a description of the launch site and the ground-based experiments. Scientific highlights of the campaign are provided.

  13. Influence of the atmosphere on the evaluation of the geopotential from global models on the surface of the Earth: implications for the realization of a World Height System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mäkinen, Jaakko

    2016-04-01

    Outside the atmosphere, the potential of a standard atmosphere can with high accuracy be approximated with the potential of a surface layer with the same mass, independently of the scale height of the atmosphere. Not so when the potential is evaluated on the surface of the Earth. In a spherically symmetric approximation and assuming a scale height of 7.6 km, the potential at zero height is in a back-of-the-envelope calculation 0.12 percent less than the potential of the surface laýer. This corresponds to a difference of -1.2 ppb in the total geopotential evaluated on the surface of the Earth, the equivalent of a difference of +8 mm in height. Using a realistic atmospheric and Earth model, the difference is not constant. This has obvious implications for the geopotential values associated with a World Height System. The question has in fact already been extensively analyzed in the context of geoid determination.

  14. Investigation of GNSS Based ERP-series to Validate Atmospheric and Oceanic Contributions to High Frequency Earth Rotation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Weber, R.; Nastula, J.; Boehm, S.

    2009-12-01

    Over the past 25 years several authors have shown that polar motions and variations of Universal Time (UT1) or length of day (LOD), respectively, from seasonal time scales down to one week are forced to a great extent by atmospheric and oceanic angular momentum (AAM and OAM) changes (Barnes, 1983; Rosen and Salstein, 1983; Brzezinski, 1992, 1994; Nastula and Salstein, 1999; Kolaczek et al., 2000; Nastula et al., 2002; Ponte and Ali,2002) and by the solid Earth tides and ocean tides. Oceanic tides also cause variations in UT1/LOD and in polar motion in particular at shorter time scales with diurnal and semi-diurnal periods. Theoretical and semi-empirical models were published by e.g. Gross (1993), Ray et al. (1994). All studies were based on ocean tide models or were using ocean tidal measurements by satellite altimetry. The Ray et al. (1994) model based on TOPEX/Poseidon satellite altimetry data is still the model which is recommended in the IERS Conventions 2003. The high-frequency variations of the Earth rotation parameters due to ocean tides can also be empirically determined from time series derived by space geodetic techniques like Very Long Baseline Interferometry (VLBI) or the Global Positioning System (GPS). Within this investigation high-quality ERP (Earth Rotation Parameter) series, i.e. polar motion (PM), and UT1 or length of day (LOD) with a time resolution of one hour have been established by processing observation data from both active GNSS-systems (GPS+GLONASS). Their correlation with oceanic- (OAM) and atmospheric-induced angular momentum (AAM) acting on the Earth’s surface are investigated. The investigations concentrate on short period variations of Earth rotation with periods of a few days down to a few hours. The amplitudes and phases of these short period tidally and non-tidally induced variations are compared to recent semi-empirical models of the oceanic and atmospheric excitation. Contrary to the standard processing scheme an improved

  15. An analytic model of the neutral cloud evolution in the earth's atmosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bruskin, L. G.; Khazanov, G. V.

    1992-01-01

    An analytic model for the expansion of a chemically reacting gas in the upper atmosphere is discussed. The spatial-temporal distribution of released particles in the initial regime is described on the basis of self-similar solutions of Euler's equations. In the case of transition to the diffusion regime an approximate solution of the kinetic equation with the collision integral in the form of BGK is performed. Gravitation and the atmospheric inhomogeneity are taken into account, The diffusion regime is described by an analytic solution of the diffusion equation in an exponential atmosphere taking account of possible losses of the gas due to chemical reactions. Some peculiarities of the expansion of various gases as well as the possibility of applying the model for describing ionospheric 'holes' are discussed.

  16. From earth's primitive atmosphere to chiral peptides--the origin of precursors for life.

    PubMed

    Plankensteiner, Kristof; Reiner, Hannes; Rode, Bernd M

    2004-09-01

    To re-enact the long way to the origin of life with today's chemical methods, many steps have to be investigated in the light of a primordial scenario deduced from geochemical research. After the formation of our planet and its atmosphere, prebiotic chemical evolution started its course with the formation of the first building blocks for the formation of biomolecules. In the case of proteins, those building blocks were amino acids that had to be formed in the primitive atmosphere, and then had to react to peptides and proteins as the main pillar of first life. In this paper, we describe the processes in the primordial atmosphere according to contemporary geochemical knowledge leading to the synthesis of amino acids until the formation of homochiral peptides, and, thus, show a plausible pathway towards the origin of life.

  17. Photochemistry of methane and the formation of hydrocyanic acid (HCN) in the earth's early atmosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zahnle, K. J.

    1986-01-01

    A one-dimensional photochemical model is used to analyze the photochemistries of CH4 and HCN in the primitive terrestrial atmosphere. CH4, N2, and HCN photolysis are examined. The background atmosphere and boundary conditions applied in the analysis are described. The formation of HCN as a by-product of N2 and CH4 photolysis is investigated; the effects of photodissociation and rainfall on HCN is discussed. The low and high CH4 mixing ratios and radical densities are studied.

  18. Remote sensing of the earth's biosphere - A tool for studies of the global atmospheric environment

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bartlett, David S.; Harriss, Robert C.; Bartlett, Karen B.

    1987-01-01

    Recent advances in remote sensing technology and its use for global studies of the biospheric processes are described. Special consideration is given to research related to two issues: (1) quantifying the impacts of natural vegetation and its changing patterns of occurrence on the atmospheric CO2 budget and (2) assessing wetlands (such as the swamps and marshes of Florida's Everglades) as sources of atmospheric CH4. The results include the data from NOAA-AVHRR sensors and from experiments in remote detection of plant growth rate.

  19. Research Spotlight: Ozone recovery and climate change will affect the atmosphere near Earth's surface

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kumar, Mohi; Tretkoff, Ernie

    Ozone in the stratosphere (˜10-50 kilometers in altitude) helps protect life on Earth from harmful solar ultraviolet radiation. But at the lower altitudes in the troposphere, (0-10 kilometers in altitude), ozone is a major constituent of smog and has detrimental health effects. The stratospheric ozone layer had been depleted but recently has started to recover due to efforts to limit emissions of ozone- depleting chemicals.

  20. A Genesis breakup and burnup analysis in off-nominal Earth return and atmospheric entry

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Salama, Ahmed; Ling, Lisa; McRonald, Angus

    2005-01-01

    The Genesis project conducted a detailed breakup/burnup analysis before the Earth return to determine if any spacecraft component could survive and reach the ground intact in case of an off-nominal entry. In addition, an independent JPL team was chartered with the responsibility of analyzing several definitive breakup scenarios to verify the official project analysis. This paper presents the analysis and results of this independent team.

  1. Microwave Propagation Attenuation due to Earth's Atmosphere and Weather at SHF Band

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ho, Christian; Wang, Charles; Gritton, Kelly; Angkasa, Kris

    2004-01-01

    In this study we have estimated radio wave propagation losses at super high frequency (SHF) band by applying available propagation models into several Air Force benchmark scenarios. The study shows that dominantly additional losses over the free space loss are atmospheric absorption, clouds, fog, and precipitation, as well as scintillation /multipath at low elevation angles. The free space loss equation has been modified to include all atmospheric attenuation and fading effects that cannot be neglected over the range of frequency of interest. Terrain profiles along all directions of interest within the coastal areas and inland areas for four benchmark cases have been analyzed in detail. We find that while the atmospheric gaseous absorption plays a significant role under a clear weather, heavy rainfalls can cause several tens of dB loss for a 100- km path through the rain. At very low elevation angles (< 5 deg), atmospheric scintillation/multipath fading becomes a very important factor. There are significant differences in the feature of anomalous mode (ducting) propagation between the east and the west coastal receiving stations.

  2. The mysterious atmosphere of the Earth. ATLAS: Instruction guide with activities

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1993-01-01

    This teacher's guide presents lesson plans addressing various aspects of atmospheric physics and chemistry; the interactions between land, air, and sea; air pollution; and the mechanisms of climate change. The science concepts in this guide have been designed to complement the middle school curriculum. However, many activities can be used with younger or older students.

  3. Perfluorocarbons (PFCs), Some of the Immortal Molecules in the Earth's Atmosphere

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Shallcross, Dudley E.; Martin, Damien

    2011-01-01

    Perfluorocarbons (PFCs) are fully fluorinated hydrocarbons that are used as blood plasma substitutes, in medical imaging and in the cosmetics industry. Most are inert and can also be used as tracers for applications such as air flow. However, because of their C-F bonds and their longevity in the atmosphere, PFCs have large global warming…

  4. Discovery and measurement of an isotopically distinct source of sulfate in Earth's atmosphere

    PubMed Central

    Dominguez, Gerardo; Jackson, Terri; Brothers, Lauren; Barnett, Burton; Nguyen, Bryan; Thiemens, Mark H.

    2008-01-01

    Sulfate (SO4) and its precursors are significant components of the atmosphere, with both natural and anthropogenic sources. Recently, our triple-isotope (16O, 17O, 18O) measurements of atmospheric sulfate have provided specific insights into the oxidation pathways leading to sulfate, with important implications for models of the sulfur cycle and global climate change. Using similar isotopic measurements of aerosol sulfate in a polluted marine boundary layer (MBL) and primary sulfate (p-SO4) sampled directly from a ship stack, we quantify the amount of p-SO4 found in the atmosphere from ships. We find that ships contribute between 10% and 44% of the non-sea-salt sulfate found in fine [diameter (D) < 1.5 μm) particulate matter in coastal Southern California. These fractions are surprising, given that p-SO4 constitutes ≈2–7% of total sulfur emissions from combustion sources [Seinfed JH, Pandis SN (2006) Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics (Wiley–Interscience, New York)]. Our findings also suggest that the interaction of SO2 from ship emissions with coarse hydrated sea salt particles may lead to the rapid removal of SO2 in the MBL. When combined with the longer residence time of p-SO4 emissions in the MBL, these findings suggest that the importance of p-SO4 emissions in marine environments may be underappreciated in global chemical models. Given the expected increase of international shipping in the years to come, these findings have clear implications for public health, air quality, international maritime law, and atmospheric chemistry. PMID:18753618

  5. Discovery and measurement of an isotopically distinct source of sulfate in Earth's atmosphere.

    PubMed

    Dominguez, Gerardo; Jackson, Terri; Brothers, Lauren; Barnett, Burton; Nguyen, Bryan; Thiemens, Mark H

    2008-09-01

    Sulfate (SO(4)) and its precursors are significant components of the atmosphere, with both natural and anthropogenic sources. Recently, our triple-isotope ((16)O, (17)O, (18)O) measurements of atmospheric sulfate have provided specific insights into the oxidation pathways leading to sulfate, with important implications for models of the sulfur cycle and global climate change. Using similar isotopic measurements of aerosol sulfate in a polluted marine boundary layer (MBL) and primary sulfate (p-SO(4)) sampled directly from a ship stack, we quantify the amount of p-SO(4) found in the atmosphere from ships. We find that ships contribute between 10% and 44% of the non-sea-salt sulfate found in fine [diameter (D) < 1.5 microm) particulate matter in coastal Southern California. These fractions are surprising, given that p-SO(4) constitutes approximately 2-7% of total sulfur emissions from combustion sources [Seinfed JH, Pandis SN (2006) Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics (Wiley-Interscience, New York)]. Our findings also suggest that the interaction of SO(2) from ship emissions with coarse hydrated sea salt particles may lead to the rapid removal of SO(2) in the MBL. When combined with the longer residence time of p-SO(4) emissions in the MBL, these findings suggest that the importance of p-SO(4) emissions in marine environments may be underappreciated in global chemical models. Given the expected increase of international shipping in the years to come, these findings have clear implications for public health, air quality, international maritime law, and atmospheric chemistry.

  6. Using the EC-Earth atmospheric model to quantify the impact of recent thinning of Arctic sea ice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lang, Andreas Michael; Yang, Shuting; Kaas, Eigil

    2016-04-01

    The atmospheric general circulation model EC-EARTH has been employed to investigate the influence of a realistic change in recent Arctic sea ice thickness on local and remote climate. To investigate the atmospheric response of a realistically thinning sea ice compared to a uniform ice thickness of 1.5 m, two 32-year-long sets of simulations have been performed covering the period 1982-2013 and driven by observed SST and SIC which are only differing by the description of the sea ice thickness. Thickness data is taken from the GIOMAS dataset, which assimilates observed sea ice conditions. The results suggest that the atmospheric impact of recent declining thickness compared to a uniform thickness shows a higher warming trend over the central Arctic, consistent with the observed sea ice thinning, and a less strong warming trend over continental Europe. The influence of a variable thickness is most pronounced in winter and in the lowermost troposphere. Overall, the Arctic SAT response to a realistic sea ice loss including its thinning is in better agreement with the one seen in the reanalysis product ERA-Interim. Precipitation and cloud cover responses do not show a significant reponse to a realistic thickness change. Further analysis of potential remote responses to Arctic sea ice thinning is currently being performed.

  7. Signatures of troposphere-stratosphere momentum coupling Implications for global atmospheric angular momentum and earth rotation budgets

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Taylor, H. A.; Mayr, H. G.; Hartle, R. E.; Kramer, L.; Stirling, R.

    1984-01-01

    During January-August 1978, the global atmospheric angular momentum (M) exhibits distinct patterns of short term momentum interchange across latitudes. In the Northern Hemisphere winter-spring season, 30-50 day modulations of M are present in which momentum enhancements at mid-latitudes (20-30 deg) are closely matched by momentum depressions at high latitudes (50-60 deg). During the same interval there are no corresponding variations in M evident in the Southern Hemisphere. Conversely, during Southern Hemisphere fall-winter, similar anti-correlations in monthly scale momentum excursions are evident between mid and high latitudes. In the Northern Hemisphere, the winter-spring momentum signatures are detected throughout the atmosphere, from the lower troposphere to the stratosphere. During the Southern Hemisphere fall-winter, the modulation patterns are not evident at the higher altitudes. Structural details of the momentum signatures indicate that the coupling is sometimes effective on very short time scales, e.g., 1-2 days, or less. The evidence of distinct anti-correlation between large regions has interesting implications for studies of global atmospheric circulation, and also for studies of the excitation of variations in earth rotation in response to short term modulations of M.

  8. IN SITU ACCRETION OF HYDROGEN-RICH ATMOSPHERES ON SHORT-PERIOD SUPER-EARTHS: IMPLICATIONS FOR THE KEPLER-11 PLANETS

    SciTech Connect

    Ikoma, M.; Hori, Y. E-mail: yasunori.hori@nao.ac.jp

    2012-07-01

    Motivated by recent discoveries of low-density super-Earths with short orbital periods, we have investigated in situ accretion of H-He atmospheres on rocky bodies embedded in dissipating warm disks, by simulating quasi-static evolution of atmospheres that connect to the ambient disk. We have found that the atmospheric evolution has two distinctly different outcomes, depending on the rocky body's mass: while the atmospheres on massive rocky bodies undergo runaway disk-gas accretion, those on light rocky bodies undergo significant erosion during disk dispersal. In the atmospheric erosion, the heat content of the rocky body that was previously neglected plays an important role. We have also realized that the atmospheric mass is rather sensitive to disk temperature in the mass range of interest in this study. Our theory is applied to recently detected super-Earths orbiting Kepler-11 to examine the possibility that the planets are rock-dominated ones with relatively thick H-He atmospheres. The application suggests that the in situ formation of the relatively thick H-He atmospheres inferred by structure modeling is possible only under restricted conditions, namely, relatively slow disk dissipation and/or cool environments. This study demonstrates that low-density super-Earths provide important clues to understanding of planetary accretion and disk evolution.

  9. Ionization of the Earth's Upper Atmosphere in Large Energetic Particle Events

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wolff, E.; Burrows, J.; Kallenrode, M.; von Koenig, M.; Kuenzi, K. F.; Quack, M.

    2001-12-01

    Energetic charged particles ionize the upper terrestrial atmosphere. Sofar, chemical consequences of precipitating particles have been discussed for solar protons with energies up to a few hundred MeV. We present a refined model for the interaction of energetic particles with the atmosphere based on a Monte-Carlo simulation. The model includes higher energies and other particle species, such as energetic solar electrons. Results are presented for well-known solar events, such as July 14, 2000, and are extrapolated to extremely large events, such as Carrington's white light flare in 1859, which from ice cores has been identified ass the largest impulsive NO3 event in the interval 1561 -- 1994 (McCracken et al., 2001).

  10. Coupled effects of atmospheric N2O and O3 on the earth's climate

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wang, W.-C.; Sze, N. D.

    1980-01-01

    Increased application of nitrogen fertilizer could perturb the atmospheric nitrogen cycle and might lead to a possible increase in atmospheric N2O. N2O has an important role in stratospheric chemistry as well as in the global radiation budget. Recent studies suggest that perturbation of local ozone could also significantly affect the global climate. It is shown that a doubling in the present day N2O level might significantly perturb the distribution of O3 and HNO3, and that the associated climatic feedbacks from O3 and HNO3 perturbations could contribute as much as 0.23 K warming of the surface temperature, in addition to 0.44 K directly caused by N2O doubling.

  11. Radiance, polarization, and ellipticity of the radiation in the earth's atmosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hitzfelder, S. J.; Plass, G. N.; Kattawar, G. W.

    1976-01-01

    The complete radiation field including polarization is calculated for a model of the real atmosphere by the matrix operator method. The radiance, direction and amount of polarization, and ellipticity are obtained at the top and bottom of the atmosphere for three values of the surface albedo (0; 0.15 0.90) and five solar zenith angles. Scattering and absorption by molecules (including ozone) and by aerosols are taken into account together with the variation of the number density of these substances with height. All results are calculated for both a normal aerosol number and a distribution which is one-third of the normal amount at all heights. The calculated values show general qualitative agreement with the available experimental measurements. The position of the neutral points of the polarization in the principal plane is a sensitive indicator of the characteristics of the aerosol particles in the atmosphere, since it depends on the sign and value of the single scattered polarization for scattering angles around 20 deg and 160 deg for transmitted and reflected photons respectively.

  12. Near-global distribution of CO isotopic fractionation in the Earth's atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Beale, C. A.; Buzan, E. M.; Boone, C. D.; Bernath, P. F.

    2016-05-01

    The first near-global (-85° to 85°) measurements of the isotopic fractionation of 13CO relative to 12CO have been obtained from 5 to 90 km using the ACE-FTS (Atmospheric Chemistry Experiment-Fourier Transform Spectrometer). These observations have been compared to predictions from WACCM (Whole Atmosphere Community Climate Model). The highest positive fractionation (i.e. relatively more 13CO) values of over 100‰ are observed in the lower thermosphere during winter in both hemispheres, whereas the highest negative fractionation (i.e. relatively more 12CO) is observed in the mesosphere in the summer at high latitudes (due to the highly fractionating effect that UV light has on CO2) and year round in the tropics. Agreement between measurements and model results is generally good at high altitude, although ACE shows a stronger fractionation effect from CO2 photolysis than predicted by WACCM. In the lower atmosphere, agreement is qualitatively good, although there is a distinct discrepancy at 40 km in all seasons, which is likely a retrieval artifact.

  13. Application of Solar Spectral Irradiance Variability in a Earth Atmospheric Model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harder, J. W.; Merkel, A.; Fontenla, J.; Marsh, D.; Woods, T. N.

    2010-12-01

    The Spectral Irradiance Monitor (SIM) measures solar spectral variability in the 200-2400 nm range, accounting for about 97% of the total solar irradiance (TSI). SIM monitored the descending phase of solar cycle 23 and is now continuing these observations into the rising phase of cycle 24. The SIM observations indicate a slower evolutionary trend in solar spectral irradiance (SSI) over solar cycle times periods that are both in and out of phase with the TSI. To estimate the atmospheric response to the solar variability implied by these observations, quiet sun and active solar reference spectra were created as input into the Whole Atmosphere Community Climate Model (WACCM). The SIM observations were combined with the SORCE SOLSTICE instrument in the 110-240 nm range and SRPM (Solar Radiation Physical Modeling) estimates in the infrared beyond the 2400 nm measurement limit of SIM to generate the reference spectra. The model output suggest a very different response in ozone than from atmospheric forcing from semi-empirical models of SSI. The model predicts a reduction in lower mesosphere at higher solar activity and a large increase in mid- to upper stratosphere. This structure can be explained by enhanced production of HOx,, and O3 self-healing effect. This structure is commensurate with contemporaneous observations of O3 from AURA-MLS and SABER.

  14. Update on the Atmospheric Composition Measurements by Curiosity: Three (Earth) Years on Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Malespin, C.; Trainer, M. G.; Franz, H. B.; Mahaffy, P. R.; Wong, M. H.; Atreya, S. K.; McKay, C.; Conrad, P. G.; Eigenbrode, J. L.; Pepin, R. O.; Becker, R. H.; Owen, T. C.; Manning, H. L.; McConnochie, T. H.; Martín-Torres, J.; Zorzano, M. P.; Navarro-Gonzalez, R.

    2015-12-01

    The Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) instrument on Curiosity has conducted a survey of major (CO2) and minor (Ar, N2, O2, CO) components of the Mars atmosphere over the course of one and a half martian years in Gale Crater. Here we present the details on the volume mixing ratios of these atmospheric species, which have been monitored as a function of season, temperature, and pressure, in conjunction with meteorological measurements conducted by the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) rover environmental monitoring station (REMS). We will present data on the relative mixing ratio of CO2, and the computed partial pressure, which shows a distinct trend with season as a result of CO2 transported to and from the poles, coinciding with changes in local atmospheric pressure. We will also present data on the mixing ratios of the non-condensable species, which show relatively small seasonal changes at the near-equatorial site of Curiosity. Where relevant, comparisons to orbital and ground-based observations, as well as previous in situ measurements, will be discussed. Results from landing through the most recent measurements on Mars will be presented to demonstrate seasonal reproducibility.

  15. Behaviour of the high-energy neutrino flux in the Earth's atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kochanov, Aleksey; Sinegovskiy, Sergey; Sinegovskaya, Tatyana; Morozova, Anna

    2015-12-01

    The processing of the IceCube experiment data obtained during 988 days (2010-2013) revealed 37 high-energy neutrino-induced events with deposited energies of 30 TeV - 2 PeV. The hypothesis of an astrophysical origin of these neutrinos is confirmed at the statistical confidence level of 5.7σ. To identify reliably the neutrino events, a thorough calculation of the atmospheric neutrino background is required. In this work we calculate the atmospheric neutrino spectra in the energy range of 100 GeV - 10 PeV with usage of several hadronic models and a few parametrizations of cosmic ray spectra supported by experimental data which take into account the knee. It is shown that rare decays of short-lived neutral ka ns K_S^0 contribute more than a third of the total ν_e +(ν)_e flux at the energies above 100 eV. The account for kaons production in pion-nucleus collisions increases the ν_e +(ν)_e flux by 5-7% in the energy range of 102-104 GeV. Calculated neutrino spectra agree on the whole with the measurement data. The neutrino flavor ratio extracted from the IceCube data possibly indicates that the conventional atmospheric electron neutrino flux obtained in the IceCube experiment contains an admixture of the astrophysical neutrinos in the range of 20-50 TeV.

  16. Advantages of a Unified Earth and Space Science Approach for Geoscience Education: Perspectives from the National Center for Atmospheric Research

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Johnson, R. M.; Barnes, T.; Bergman, J.; Carbone, L.; Eastburn, T.; Foster, S.; Gardiner, L.; Genyuk, J.; Henderson, S.; Lagrave, M.; Munoz, R.; Russell, R.; Araujo-Pradere, E.; Metcalfe, T.; Mastie, D.; Pennington, P.

    2005-05-01

    The intellectual divisions common among scientists involved in research in specific disciplines are frequently not shared by the broader community of learners. For example, in K-12 education, the Earth sciences and the space sciences have generally been taught in an integrated approach, until opportunities for more advanced courses become available at the higher grade levels in some fortunate school districts. When scientists involved in EPO activities retain a perspective limited to their particular science mission, rather than stepping back to a broader perspective that places the research in a larger context, they risk limiting the usefulness of these activities to a broad cross-section of learners that seek to learn in a contextual framework. The re-integration of Earth and space sciences within NASA's Science Mission Directorate provides an opportunity to more systematically take advantage of the fact that Earth is one of many examples of possible planetary evolution scenarios presented in our solar system and beyond. This development should encourage integration of research across the SMD into a broader context that encourages the development of higher learning skills and a systems thinking approach. At the National Center for Atmospheric Research, the interdisciplinary nature of the research problems we address requires an approach that integrates Earth and space science, and we parallel this in our education and outreach activities, ranging from our exhibits on climate change to our professional development workshops and online courses to our websites and curriculum development efforts. The Windows to the Universe project (http://www.windows.ucar.edu), initiated at the University of Michigan with support from NASA in 1995 and now developed and maintained at the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research, has maintained this integrated approach from its inception with great success - leading to over 6 million users of our English and Spanish language

  17. On the Size of the Cosmic Dust Input to the Earth's Atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Plane, J. M. C.; Feng, W.; Carrillo-Sánchez, J. D.; Janches, D.; Nesvorny, D.; Gardner, C. S.; Marsh, D. R.

    2014-12-01

    Current estimates of the magnitude of the cosmic dust input range from 2 to over 100 tons per day (t d-1), depending on whether the measurements are made in space, in the middle atmosphere, or in polar ice cores. This nearly 2 order-of-magnitude discrepancy indicates that there are flaws in perhaps both the interpretation of the experimental observations and the atmospheric models that have been used to make the estimates. This paper will describe three new estimates of the dust input, and attempt to reconcile them. The first is a zodiacal dust cloud model which predicts that more than 90% of the dust entering the atmosphere comes from Jupiter Family Comets, and that the dust is mostly in a near-prograde orbit and should enter the atmosphere with an average velocity around 14 km s-1. However, relatively few of these slow particles are observed, even by the powerful Arecibo 430 MHz radar. Using coupled models of meteoroid differential ablation, ionization and radar detection to compute the probability of detecting a specified meteoroid in the Arecibo beam, an upper limit to the cosmic dust input of 16 t d-1 has been obtained from the radar obsevations. The second method is to use lidar measurements of the vertical Na atom flux at the Starfire Optical Range, combined with predictions of the relative geographic variations of the key wave-induced vertical transport processes from the Whole Atmosphere Community Climate Model (WACCM). The estimated global influx of cosmic dust is then 50 ± 13 t d-1. The final method is to model several of the mesospheric metal layers - Na, Fe, K and Ca - using WACCM with a full treatment of the gas-phase chemistry of these metals, together with the explicit formation and growth of meteoric smoke particles. The absolute densities of the metal layers can be satisfactorily modelled with a dust input of up to 25 t d-1 if the dust mass and velocity distribution is that predicted by the zodiacal dust cloud model referred to above.

  18. Free and Forced Convection in High Permeability Porous Media: Impact on Gas Flux at the Earth-atmosphere Interface

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Weisbrod, N.; Levintal, E.; Dragila, M. I.; Kamai, T.

    2015-12-01

    Gas movement within the earth's subsurface and its exchange with the atmosphere is one of the principal elements contributing to soil and atmospheric function. As the soil permeability increases, gas circulation by convective mechanisms becomes significantly greater than the diffusion. Two of the convective mechanisms, which can be of great importance, are being explored in this research. The first one is thermal convection venting (TCV), which develops when there are unstable density gradients. The second mechanism is wind induced convection (WIC), which develops due to surface winds that drive air movement. Here, we report the results of a study on the relationships between the porous media permeability and particle size, and the development and magnitude of TCV and WIC with the development of thermal differences and surface winds. The research included large high-permeability column experiments carried out under highly controlled laboratory conditions, using well-defined single-sized spherical particles while surface winds and thermal differences were forced and monitored. CO2 enriched air, functioned as a tracer, was used to quantify the impact of TCV and WIC on gas migration in the porous media. Results show that in homogenous porous media a permeability range of 10-7 to 10-6 m2 is the threshold value for TCV onset under standard atmospheric conditions. Adding surface wind with an average velocity of 1.5 m s-1 resulted in WIC effect to a depth of -0.3 m in most experimental settings; however, it did not caused additional air circulation at the reference depth of -0.9 m. Furthermore, given the appropriate conditions, a combined effect of TCV and WIC did significantly increase the overall media ventilation. Simulations of temperature profiles in soil under that permeability, showed that as the thermal gradient changes with depth and is a continuous function, TCV cells can be developed in local sections of the profile, not necessarily reaching the atmosphere.

  19. The Sub-bureau for Atmospheric Angular Momentum of the International Earth Rotation Service - A meteorological data center with geodetic applications

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Salstein, David A.; Kann, Deirdre M.; Miller, Alvin J.; Rosen, Richard D.

    1993-01-01

    By exchanging angular momentum with the solid portion of the earth, the atmosphere plays a vital role in exciting small but measurable changes in the rotation of our planet. Recognizing this relationship, the International Earth Rotation Service invited the U.S. National Meteorological Center to organize a Sub-bureau for Atmospheric Angular Momentum (SBAAM) for the purpose of collecting, distributing, archiving, and analyzing atmospheric parameters relevant to earth rotation/polar motion. These functions of wind and surface pressure are being computed with data from several of the world's weather services, and they are being widely applied to the research and operations of the geodetic community. The SBAAM began operating formally in October 1989, and this article highlights its development, operations, and significance.

  20. Inorganic aerosol formation and growth in the Earth's lower and upper atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Saunders, R. W.; Plane, J. M. C.

    2006-12-01

    This chapter describes the photo-chemical production of aerosol particles in two very different regions of the atmosphere: iodine oxide particles in the marine boundary layer (MBL), and meteoric smoke particles that form in the upper mesosphere from the ablation of interplanetary dust. These two systems are surprisingly analogous the source of the condensable inorganic vapours is external to the atmosphere, being injected into the atmosphere from the ocean or from space and the particles are formed by homogeneous nucleation. The purpose of the chapter is to describe a laboratory and modelling study to understand at a fundamental level how the nucleation and growth of the particles occurs. Iodine oxide particles were produced from the photo-oxidation of gaseous I{2} with O{3}, which is most likely the primary photo-chemical route to produce the bursts of new particles observed in the MBL at seaweed-rich coastal locations. The captured particles were observed to be fractal-like (i.e., with open or non-compact structures), and to be composed of the stable oxide I{2}O{5}. Meteoric smoke analogues of iron oxide, silicon oxide, and iron silicate composition were similarly formed from the photo-oxidation of iron- and silicon-containing gas-phase precursors in the presence of O{3}. Imaging of the iron-containing particles showed them to be extended, fractal aggregates. For each system, models were developed to elucidate the growth kinetics of the particles and to characterise them in terms of standard fractal parameters. I{2}O{5} particles were found to have a fractal dimension (Df) value of 2.5 at long growth times, consistent with a particle-cluster diffusion-limited aggregation (DLA) mechanism, whereas smoke analogues had lower Df values (1.75) which appear to result from a magnetic aggregation process.

  1. 40Ar/39Ar systematics and argon diffusion in amber: implications for ancient earth atmospheres

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Landis, G.P.; Snee, L.W.

    1991-01-01

    Argon isotope data indicate retained argon in bulk amber (matrix gas) is radiogenic [40Ar/39Ar ???32o] than the much more abundant surface absorbed argon [40Ar/39Ar ???295.5]. Neutron-induced 39Ar is retained in amber during heating experiments to 150?? -250??C, with no evidence of recoiled 39Ar found after irradiation. A maximum permissible volume diffusion coefficient of argon in amber (at ambient temperature) D???1.5 x 10-17 cm2S-1 is calculated from 39Ar retention. 40Ar/39Ar age calculations indicate Dominican Republic amber is ??? 45 Ma and North Dakota amber is ??? 89 Ma, both at least reasonable ages for the amber based upon stratigraphic and paleontological constraints and upon the small amount of radiogenic 40Ar. To date, over 300 gas analyses of ambers and resins of Cretaceous to Recent age that are geographically distributed among fifteen noted world locations identify mixtures of gases in different sites within amber (Berner and Landis, 1988). The presence of multiple mixing trends between compositionally distinct end-members gases within the same sample and evidence for retained radiogenic argon within the amber argue persuasivley against rapid exchange by diffusion of amber-contained gases with moder air. Only gas in primary bubbles entrapped between successive flows of tree resin has been interpreted as original "ancient air", which is an O2-rich end-member gas with air-like N2/Ar ratios. Gas analyses of these primary bubbles indicate atmospheric O2 levels in the Late Cretaceous of ??? 35%, and that atmospheric O2 dropped by early Tertiary time to near a present atmospheric level of 21% O2. A very low argon diffusion coefficient in amber persuasively argues for a gas in primary bubbles trapped in amber being ancient air (possibly modified only by O2 reaction with amber). ?? 1991.

  2. The Chlorine Abundance of Earth: Evidence for Early Atmospheric Loss and Creation of a Life-Supporting Planet

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sharp, Z. D.; Draper, D. S.

    2009-12-01

    The Earth abundance of the heavier halogens, Cl, Br and I, are significantly depleted relative to expected values based on CI chondrites and solar abundances. The cause of these ‘selective’ depletions may be related to 1) far greater volatility than previously assumed; 2) a hidden reservoir on Earth; 3) selective loss of the halogens during planetary accretion. The volatility of an element is related to its temperature of condensation from the cooling solar nebula. The high condensation temperature of Cl is based on sodalite crystallization at ~800 K (10-4 bar), but even if sodalite formation is kinetically impeded at such low pressures, NaCl (g) should condense to NaCl (s) at only slightly lower temperatures. An unreasonably low condensation temperature of ~200 K would be needed to explain Earth’s concentration of halogens. A second possibility for the apparent Earth depletion is that Cl is strongly partitioned into the core. We tested this hypothesis by experimentally measuring Cl partitioning between basalt and Fe (and Fe95.5S4.5) at high pressures and temperatures. Samples were doped with trace FeCl2 as a Cl source. The measured D (Cl) metal-basalt is less than 0.01 under all conditions, ruling out the possibility of a Cl sink in the core. We propose instead that the halogens were lost during the late giant bombardment stage of planetary accretion. The selective loss of the halogens relative to other elements with similar condensation temperatures is explained by their unique hydrophilic character. Early in Earth’s history, halogens were strongly partitioned into the ocean/surficial environment. They were then removed by atmospheric erosion associated with giant impacts towards the end of planetary accretion. Our results provide independent evidence for multiple atmospheric-loss events, a controversial conclusion that is at odds with some geophysical studies. Over 90% of Cl was lost in early Earth history. Today, the oceans host nearly half of Earth

  3. Assessing the habitability of planets with Earth-like atmospheres with 1D and 3D climate modeling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Godolt, M.; Grenfell, J. L.; Kitzmann, D.; Kunze, M.; Langematz, U.; Patzer, A. B. C.; Rauer, H.; Stracke, B.

    2016-07-01

    Context. The habitable zone (HZ) describes the range of orbital distances around a star where the existence of liquid water on the surface of an Earth-like planet is in principle possible. The applicability of one-dimensional (1D) climate models for the estimation of the HZ boundaries has been questioned by recent three-dimensional (3D) climate studies. While 3D studies can calculate the water vapor, ice albedo, and cloud feedback self-consistently and therefore allow for a deeper understanding and the identification of relevant climate processes, 1D model studies rely on fewer model assumptions and can be more easily applied to the large parameter space possible for extrasolar planets. Aims: We evaluate the applicability of 1D climate models to estimate the potential habitability of Earth-like extrasolar planets by comparing our 1D model results to those of 3D climate studies in the literature. We vary the two important planetary properties, surface albedo and relative humidity, in the 1D model. These depend on climate feedbacks that are not treated self-consistently in most 1D models. Methods: We applied a cloud-free 1D radiative-convective climate model to calculate the climate of Earth-like planets around different types of main-sequence stars with varying surface albedo and relative humidity profile. We compared the results to those of 3D model calculations available in the literature and investigated to what extent the 1D model can approximate the surface temperatures calculated by the 3D models. Results: The 1D parameter study results in a large range of climates possible for an Earth-sized planet with an Earth-like atmosphere and water reservoir at a certain stellar insolation. At some stellar insolations the full spectrum of climate states could be realized, i.e., uninhabitable conditions due to surface temperatures that are too high or too low as well as habitable surface conditions, depending only on the relative humidity and surface albedo assumed. When

  4. New Broadband LIDAR for Greenhouse Carbon Dioxide Gas Sensing in the Earth's Atmosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Georgieva, Elena; Heaps, William S.; Huang,Wen

    2011-01-01

    We present demonstration of a novel broadband lidar technique capable of dealing with the atmospherically induced variations in CO2 absorption using a Fabry-Perot based detector and a broadband laser. The Fabry-Perot solid etalon in the receiver part is tuned to match the wavelength of several CO2 absorption lines simultaneously. The broadband technique tremendously reduces the requirement for source wavelength stability, instead putting this responsibility on the Fabry- Perot based receiver. The instrument technology we are developing has a clear pathway to space and realistic potential to become a robust, low risk space measurement system.

  5. Collaborative Project. A Flexible Atmospheric Modeling Framework for the Community Earth System Model (CESM)

    SciTech Connect

    Gettelman, Andrew

    2015-10-01

    In this project we have been upgrading the Multiscale Modeling Framework (MMF) in the Community Atmosphere Model (CAM), also known as Super-Parameterized CAM (SP-CAM). This has included a major effort to update the coding standards and interface with CAM so that it can be placed on the main development trunk. It has also included development of a new software structure for CAM to be able to handle sub-grid column information. These efforts have formed the major thrust of the work.

  6. Comparison of Regression Methods to Compute Atmospheric Pressure and Earth Tidal Coefficients in Water Level Associated with Wenchuan Earthquake of 12 May 2008

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    He, Anhua; Singh, Ramesh P.; Sun, Zhaohua; Ye, Qing; Zhao, Gang

    2016-07-01

    The earth tide, atmospheric pressure, precipitation and earthquake fluctuations, especially earthquake greatly impacts water well levels, thus anomalous co-seismic changes in ground water levels have been observed. In this paper, we have used four different models, simple linear regression (SLR), multiple linear regression (MLR), principal component analysis (PCA) and partial least squares (PLS) to compute the atmospheric pressure and earth tidal effects on water level. Furthermore, we have used the Akaike information criterion (AIC) to study the performance of various models. Based on the lowest AIC and sum of squares for error values, the best estimate of the effects of atmospheric pressure and earth tide on water level is found using the MLR model. However, MLR model does not provide multicollinearity between inputs, as a result the atmospheric pressure and earth tidal response coefficients fail to reflect the mechanisms associated with the groundwater level fluctuations. On the premise of solving serious multicollinearity of inputs, PLS model shows the minimum AIC value. The atmospheric pressure and earth tidal response coefficients show close response with the observation using PLS model. The atmospheric pressure and the earth tidal response coefficients are found to be sensitive to the stress-strain state using the observed data for the period 1 April-8 June 2008 of Chuan 03# well. The transient enhancement of porosity of rock mass around Chuan 03# well associated with the Wenchuan earthquake (Mw = 7.9 of 12 May 2008) that has taken its original pre-seismic level after 13 days indicates that the co-seismic sharp rise of water well could be induced by static stress change, rather than development of new fractures.

  7. Nano- and Microscale Particles in Vortex Motions in Earth's Atmosphere and Ionosphere

    SciTech Connect

    Popel, S. I.; Izvekova, Yu. N.; Shukla, P. K.

    2010-12-14

    Vortex motions in the atmosphere are shown to be closely connected with dynamics of the dust nano- and microscale particles. The mechanism by which nano- and microscale particles are transported from the troposphere into the lower stratosphere by synoptic-scale vortices, simulated by the soliton solutions to the Charney-Obukhov equations (Rossby vortices), is described. Redistribution of dust particles in the ionosphere as a result of vortical motions is discussed. It is shown that excitation of acoustic-gravitational vortices at altitudes of 110-130 km as a result of development of acoustic-gravitational wave instability, associated with nonzero balance of heat fluxes, owing to solar radiation, water vapors condensation, infrared emission of the atmosphere, and thermal conductivity, leads to a substantial transportation of dust particles and their mixing at altitudes of 110-120 km. One of the ways of transportation of dust particles in the ionosphere is shown to be vertical flows (streamers), which are generated by dust vortices as a result of development of parametric instability.

  8. Earth observation and atmospheric sounding based on a high spectral resolution lidar

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Yanyang; Luo, Haiying; Liu, Dong; Yang, Yongying

    2015-10-01

    Obtain accurate detection data on the distribution of water vapor and aerosol is the basis for researches on numerical weather prediction and dynamic meteorology. It also has great importance for finding haze formation and digestion mechanism. In this paper, the high spectral resolution lidar (HSRL) is employed to obtain the optical properties of the atmosphere such as optical depth and backscatter coefficient which are very helpful to get the accurate detection data on distribution and Interaction of water vapor and aerosol continuously. A forward simulation model is established to simulate the typical atmospheric conditions and aerosol distribution, and considered the presence of sunlight during the day and the background noise. The simulation result shows that the HSRL proposed here can perform well with satisfactory measurement accuracy for the altitudes below 8km, which is better than 10%, so that HSRL is very helpful to the improvement of the accuracy of weather forecasts and to the study on the prevention and control measures of haze and other weather disasters.

  9. Dust of Orionid meteor shower in the Earth atmosphere before and after Halley's Comet

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mateshvili, G.; Mateshvili, YU.

    1989-01-01

    Among the interesting questions concerning meteor streams associated with Comet Halley is the question of whether or not the activity of a meteor stream was connected with the approach of the comet to the terrestrial orbit in 1985 to 1986. Meteoric aerosols getting to the upper atmosphere can be detected by twilight sounding, as has been done previously. It turns out that not only parameters describing some properties of aerosol can be obtained by twilight sounding, but also characteristics concerning the structure of the stream can be derived. Among the yearly active streams, the Orionides have always attracted the attention of scientists. The period of activity of the Orionides is October 18 to 26, and the maximum stream activity is October 21. In detecting aerosol layers in the terrestrial atmosphere, a notion of the logarithmic intensity gradient of scattered twilight light is used, d log I/dH, where I is intensity and H is the real twilight beam height, which is a function of the wavelength observed. A photoelectric photometer with an interference filter at the wavelength of 610 nm is used. The observation were carried out in two points of the solar vertical; the zenith angle of the observation points was + or - 60 degrees. The recording was carried on continuously in each direction during a minute, then the system was switched to the other direction. A calibration standard was recorded before each observation. The observation dates in the Orionid periods of 1984, 1986, and 1987 are given.

  10. Status of the Geostationary Spectrograph (GeoSpec) for Earth and Atmospheric Science Applications

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Janz, Scott; Hilsenrath, Ernest; Mount, G.; Brune, W.; Heath, D.

    2004-01-01

    GeoSpec will support future satellite mission concepts in the Atmospheric Sciences and in Land and Ocean Sciences by providing time-resolved measurements of both chemically linked atmospheric trace gas concentrations of important molecules such as O3, NO2, CH2O and SO2 and at the same time coastal and ocean pollution events, tidal effects, and the origin and evolution of aerosol plumes. The instrument design concept in development is a dual spectrograph covering the WMS wavelength region of 310-500 nm and the VIS/NIR wavelength region of 480-900 nm coupled to all reflective telescope and high sensitivity PIN/CMOS area detector. The goal of the project is to demonstrate a system capable of making moderate spatial resolution (750 meters at nadir) hyperspectral measurements (0.6 to 1.2 nm resolution) from a geostationary orbit. This would enable studies of time-varying pollution and coastal change processes with a temporal resolution of 5 minutes on a regional scale to 1 hour on a continental scale. Other spatial resolutions can be supported by varying the focal length of the input telescope. Scientific rationale and instrument design and status will be presented.

  11. An Overview of Energetic Particle Precipitation Effects on the Earth's Atmosphere and (Potentially) Climate

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jackman, Charles H.

    2012-01-01

    Energetic precipitating particles (EPPs) can cause significant constituent changes in the polar mesosphere and stratosphere (middle atmosphere) during certain periods. Both protons and electrons can influence the polar middle atmosphere through ionization and dissociation processes. EPPs can enhance HOx (H, OH, HO2) through the formation of positive ions followed by complex ion chemistry and NOx (N, NO, NO2) through the dissociation of molecular nitrogen. The solar EPP-created HOx increases can lead to ozone destruction in the mesosphere and upper stratosphere via several catalytic loss cycles. Such middle atmospheric HOx-caused ozone loss is rather short-lived due to the relatively short lifetime (hours) of the HOx constituents. The HOx-caused ozone depletion of greater than 30% has been observed during several large solar proton events (SPEs) in the past 50 years. HOx enhancements due to SPEs were confirmed by observations in solar cycle 23. A number of modeling studies have been undertaken over this time period that show predictions of enhanced HOx accompanied by decreased ozone due to energetic particles. The solar EPP-created NOx family has a longer lifetime than the HOx family and can also lead to catalytic ozone destruction. EPP-caused enhancements of the NOx family can affect ozone promptly, if produced in the stratosphere, or subsequently, if produced in the lower thermosphere or mesosphere and transported to the stratosphere. NOx enhancements due to auroral electrons, medium and high energy electrons, relativistic electron precipitation (REP) events, and SPEs have been measured and/or modeled for decades. Model predictions and measurements show that certain years have significant winter-time meteorological events, which result in the transport of EPP-caused NOx enhancements in the upper mesosphere and lower thermosphere to lower altitudes. The NOx-caused ozone depletion has also been observed during several solar proton events (SPEs) in the past 50 years

  12. A comparison of measured and inferred temperatures from AEROS-B. [of earth atmosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chandra, S.; Spencer, N. W.; Krankowsky, D.; Laemmerzahl, P.

    1976-01-01

    The neutral composition and the temperature data obtained from the AEROS-B Neutral Atmosphere Temperature Experiment (NATE) and the Neutral and Ion Mass Spectrometer (NIMS) are compared, and the general validity of inferring gas temperatures from N2 and Ar density profiles is examined by comparing them with the in situ measured values of the neutral kinetic temperature (NATE). At times serious discrepancies are noted between the inferred and the measured temperature. This is particularly evident during periods of increased magnetic activity when the normally observed latitudinal variations are apparently modulated by waves propagating from the polar region to low latitudes. Under these conditions the N2 and Ar densities and temperature oscillations are usually out of phase, and the temperatures inferred from N2 and Ar at a given point become meaningless.

  13. A Comparison among Solar Diameter Measurements Carried Out from the Ground and outside Earth's Atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Djafer, D.; Thuillier, G.; Sofia, S.

    2008-03-01

    The solar diameter has been measured since the 17th century, using different methods and instruments, and without a clear strategy of measurement, which could explain the lack of coherence between the results obtained. The present study confirms that the discrepancies between solar diameter measurements are mostly due to differences in instrumental characteristics, the spectral domain of observation of each investigation, and atmospheric turbulence for ground measurements. We show that correcting the measurements for the effects introduced by the properties of each instrument reduces the differences between the radius measurements to the level of uncertainty of each instrument. This study makes use of simulated and real data. For the simulated data, we use an empirical model of the solar limb shape, and for observations, we use measurements carried out with the Solar Disk Sextant experiment, the CCD solar astrolabe of Calern Observatory, and the Michelson Doppler Imager on board SOHO.

  14. Atmospheric Physics and Earth Observations: Observations of Lyman-agr Emissions of Hydrogen and Deuterium.

    PubMed

    Bertaux, J L; Goutail, F; Kockarts, G

    1984-07-13

    A spectrophotometer was flown on Spacelab 1 to study various mechanisms of Lyman-alpha emission in the upper atmosphere. The use of absorption cells filled with H(2) and D(2) gases allowed us to discriminate a number of weak Lyman-alpha emissions heretofore masked by the strong H geocoronal emission due to resonance scattering of solar photons. Preliminary results are presented on three topics: the first optical detection of the deuterium Lyman-alpha emission at 110 kilometers, with an intensity of 330 rayleighs indicating an eddy diffusion coefficient of 1.3 x 10(6) square centimeters per second; auroral proton precipitations seen on both the night and the day side; and an emission located above 250 kilometers of altitude, interpreted as the result of charge exchange of magnetospheric protons with geocoronal atoms. PMID:17837930

  15. Space and Atmospheric Environments: From Low Earth Orbits to Deep Space

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Barth, Janet L.

    2003-01-01

    Natural space and atmospheric environments pose a difficult challenge for designers of technological systems in space. The deleterious effects of environment interactions with the systems include degradation of materials, thermal changes, contamination, excitation, spacecraft glow, charging, radiation damage, and induced background interference. Design accommodations must be realistic with minimum impact on performance while maintaining a balance between cost and risk. The goal of applied research in space environments and effects is to limit environmental impacts at low cost relative to spacecraft cost and to infuse enabling and commercial off-the-shelf technologies into space programs. The need to perform applied research to understand the space environment in a practical sense and to develop methods to mitigate these environment effects is frequently underestimated by space agencies and industry. Applied science research in this area is critical because the complexity of spacecraft systems is increasing, and they are exposed simultaneously to a multitude of space environments.

  16. Physic-mathematical modeling of atmospheric tides influence on background circulation and background temperature of lower Earth thermosphere.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gavrilov, Anatoliy; Kapitsa, Andrey

    Nonstationary semiempirical model of: 1) atmospheric thermal tides (ATT) in middle Earth atmosphere conditional on ozone and water vapor absorption; 2) tidal disturbances (TD) gen-erated by global ozone anomalies. Geophysical phenomenon -distant wave action (teleconnec-tion) of Antarctic ozone anomaly on thermal tidal wind structure, background circulation and background temperature in middle-latitude and polar lower thermosphere of northern hemi-sphere, which was not known earlier, and which was found by means of numerical experiments on constructed model and confirmed by observations, is described. Mean zonal numerical cor-recting models of background circulation and background temperature in lower thermosphere due to semidiurnal and diurnal ATT dissipation at these heights are given. It is noted that background temperature corrections reach maximum value of 40-50 degrees in polar lower ther-mosphere of both hemispheres at 110-metricconverterProductID120 km120 km height due to "heating" caused by semidiurnal ATT, both during equinox and solstice.

  17. Goose Bay radar observations of earth-reflected atmospheric gravity waves in the high-latitude ionosphere

    SciTech Connect

    Ruohoniemi, J.M.; Greenwald, R.A.; Baker, K.B.; Samson, J.C.

    1990-05-03

    An HF backscatter radar at Goose Bay, Labrador made it possible to observe irregularities in the distribution of ionospheric ionization at E and F region altitudes (100 - 600 km) in the high-latitude (65 - 85 deg Lambda) ionosphere. Recently it has been established that the passage of atmospheric gravity waves perturbs the ionosphere in ways that are readily detected in returns that reflect off the ionospheric layers. The particular strength of the technique lies in the nearly instantaneous measurement of gravity wave effects over large areas ( 1 million sq. km). With this information the propagation of gravity waves can be accurately modelled. Generally gravity waves are observed during daylight hours propagating away from the auroral electrojets. The propagation mode involves penetration of wave energy through the lower atmosphere and subsequent reflection by the earth's surface. The frequencies associated with the waves lie in the 0.4 - 0.6 mHz range and the wavelengths vary from 300 to 500 km. The excitation sources appear to lie in the vicinity of the high-latitude electrojets. In this paper we outline the analysis of gravity wave effects on HF propagation and present an example of a modelled gravity wave event.

  18. Optical characteristics of the earth's surface and atmosphere from the point of view of the remote sensing of natural resources: Review of the contemporary status of the problem

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tarnopolskiy, V. I.

    1978-01-01

    Widely used remote probing methods, and especially the multispectral method, for studying the earth from aerospace platforms necessitate the systematization and accumulation of data on the relationships between remote observations and measured parameters and characteristic properties and conditions of phenomena on the earth's surface. Data were presented on the optical characteristics of natural objects which arise during observations of these objects over a wide spectral interval which encompasses solar radiation reflected by the object as well as the object's inherent thermal radiation. The influence of the earth's atmosphere on remote measurements and several problems in simulation and calculation are discussed.

  19. BROADBAND TRANSMISSION SPECTROSCOPY OF THE SUPER-EARTH GJ 1214b SUGGESTS A LOW MEAN MOLECULAR WEIGHT ATMOSPHERE

    SciTech Connect

    Croll, Bryce; Jayawardhana, Ray; Albert, Loic; Kempton, Eliza Miller-Ricci; Fortney, Jonathan J.; Murray, Norman; Neilson, Hilding

    2011-08-01

    We use the Wide-field Infrared Camera (WIRCam) on the Canada-France-Hawaii Telescope to observe four transits of the super-Earth planet GJ 1214b in the near-infrared. For each transit, we observe GJ 1214 in two bands nearly simultaneously by rapidly switching the WIRCam filter wheel back and forth for the duration of the observations. By combining all our J-band ({approx}1.25 {mu}m) observations we find a transit depth, analogous to the planet-to-star radius ratio squared, in this band of (R{sub PJ} /R{sub *}){sup 2} = (1.338 {+-} 0.013)%-a value consistent with the optical transit depth reported by Charbonneau and collaborators. However, our best-fit combined K{sub s}-band ({approx}2.15 {mu}m) transit depth is deeper: (R{sub PKs} /R{sub *}){sup 2} = (1.438 {+-} 0.019)%. Formally, our K{sub s}-band transits are deeper than the J-band transits observed simultaneously by a factor of (R{sub PKs} /R{sub PJ}){sup 2} = 1.072 {+-} 0.018-a 4{sigma} discrepancy. The most straightforward explanation for our deeper K{sub s}-band transit depth is a spectral absorption feature from the limb of the atmosphere of the planet; for the spectral absorption feature to be this prominent, the atmosphere of GJ 1214b must have a large-scale height and a low mean molecular weight. That is, its atmosphere would have to be hydrogen/helium dominated and this planet would be better described as a mini-Neptune. However, recently published observations from 0.78 to 1.0 {mu}m, by Bean and collaborators, show a lack of spectral features and transit depths consistent with those obtained by Charbonneau and collaborators. The most likely atmospheric composition for GJ 1214b that arises from combining all these observations is less clear; if the atmosphere of GJ 1214b is hydrogen/helium dominated, then it must have either a haze layer that is obscuring transit-depth differences at shorter wavelengths or significantly different spectral features from what current models predict. Our observations

  20. Evolutionary ecology during the rise of dioxygen in the Earth's atmosphere.

    PubMed

    Sleep, Norman H; Bird, Dennis K

    2008-08-27

    Pre-photosynthetic niches were meagre with a productivity of much less than 10(-4) of modern photosynthesis. Serpentinization, arc volcanism and ridge-axis volcanism reliably provided H(2). Methanogens and acetogens reacted CO(2) with H(2) to obtain energy and make organic matter. These skills pre-adapted a bacterium for anoxygenic photosynthesis, probably starting with H(2) in lieu of an oxygen 'acceptor'. Use of ferrous iron and sulphide followed as abundant oxygen acceptors, allowing productivity to approach modern levels. The 'photobacterium' proliferated rooting much of the bacterial tree. Land photosynthetic microbes faced a dearth of oxygen acceptors and nutrients. A consortium of photosynthetic and soil bacteria aided weathering and access to ferrous iron. Biologically enhanced weathering led to the formation of shales and, ultimately, to granitic rocks. Already oxidized iron-poor sedimentary rocks and low-iron granites provided scant oxygen acceptors, as did freshwater in their drainages. Cyanobacteria evolved dioxygen production that relieved them of these vicissitudes. They did not immediately dominate the planet. Eventually, anoxygenic and oxygenic photosynthesis oxidized much of the Earth's crust and supplied sulphate to the ocean. Anoxygenic photosynthesis remained important until there was enough O(2) in downwelling seawater to quantitatively oxidize massive sulphides at mid-ocean ridge axes.

  1. Periodic components of the atmospheric drag of Earth artificial satellites and their dependence on the state of space weather

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Komendant, Volodymyr; Koshkin, Nikolay; Ryabov, Mikhail

    2016-07-01

    Based on the accumulated in the University Observatory extensive database of evolving orbital elements of low-orbit satellites, the behavior of the parameterwas studied, which characterizes their drag in the atmosphere of the Earth. The time spectra structure of drag of 25 artificial satellites is being studied by applying various methods of spectral analysis. Fifteen artificial satellites with circular orbits and ten artificial satellites with elliptical orbits are studied. The processed information includes ten years of observations that covers: declining and minimum phases of 23 ^{rd}(2005-2008) solar cycle; phases of rise and maximum of 24th(2009-2014) solar cycle. Time-frequency analysis of solar and geomagnetic activity indexes has been conducted. These indexes are: W - Wolf numbers; Sp - the total area of sunspot groups of the northern and southern hemispheres of the Sun, F10.7 - the solar radio flux at 10,7 cm; E - electron flux with energies more than 0,6 MeV i 2 MeV; planetary, high latitude and middle latitude geomagnetic index Ap. Periodograms of satellite's drag data, solar and geomagnetic activity indexes were constructed. In the atmospheric drag dynamics of satellites,the following periodswere detected: 6-year, 2.1-year, annual, semi-annual, 27-days, 13- and 11-days. Similar periods are identified in indexes of solar and geomagnetic activity. The ratios of the amplitudes of the spectral power of these periods vary in different phases of the solar cycle. The tables of the main periods in the drag of the artificial satellites and the main periods in the solar and geomagnetic activity indexes were obtained with the help of spectrograms. Their presence in certain phases of the solar cycle was researched. The calculation of multiple correlation' models of the orbital parameter characterizing the drag of satellites on various orbits, depending on the basic parameters of space weather has been done. These results have practical application for models

  2. Modeling impacts of NH3 on uptake of H2SO4 by charged nucleating nanoparticles in the Earth's atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nadykto, A. B.; Nazarenko, K. M.; Markov, P. N.; Yu, F.

    2016-06-01

    The understanding of the role of ammonia, a well-known stabilizer of binary sulfuric acid-water clusters, in the gas-to-nanoparticle conversion in the Earth atmosphere is critically important for the assessment of aerosol radiative forcing associated with the climate changes. The sulfuric acid H2SO4 is present in the atmosphere in the form of the gas-phase hydrates (H2SO4)(H2O)n, whose interaction with NH3 leads to the formation of more stable bisulfate clusters (NH3)(H2SO4)(H2O)n. Although the impact of NH3 on the thermochemical stability of binary clusters nucleating homogeneously has been studied in some detail in the past, the effect of ammonia on other microphysical properties relevant to nucleation remains insufficiently well understood. In the present study, the effect of ammonia on the electrical dipole moment controlling the nucleation of airborne ions via the dipole-charge interaction has been investigated using the Density Functional Theory (DFT), ab initio MP2 and model chemistry G3 methods. The presence of ammonia in (H2SO4)(H2O)n is found to lead to very large enhancement in the dipole moment, which exceeds 2.0-2.5 Debyes (˜60-80%), 3.7-5.0 Debyes (˜90-180%), 1.4-4.5 Debyes (˜50-150%) and 2.1-5.5 Debyes (˜60-700%) for n = 0, n = 1, n = 2 and n = 3, respectively. The implications of this include the significantly increased uptake of the sulfuric acid, the key atmospheric nucleation precursor, by airborne ions and neutrals (due to dipole-dipole interaction), enhanced nucleation rates and the elevated production of ultrafine particles, which cause adverse health impacts.

  3. The potential importance of non-local, deep transport on the energetics, momentum, chemistry, and aerosol distributions in the atmospheres of Earth, Mars, and Titan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rafkin, Scot C. R.

    2012-01-01

    A review of non-local, deep transport mechanisms in the atmosphere of Earth provides a good foundation for examining whether similar mechanisms are operating in the atmospheres of Mars and Titan. On Earth, deep convective clouds in the tropics constitute the upward branch of the Hadley Cell and provide a conduit through which energy, moisture, momentum, aerosols, and chemical species are moved from the boundary layer to the upper troposphere and lower stratosphere. This transport produces mid-tropospheric minima in quantities such as water vapor and moist static energy and maxima where the clouds detrain. Analogs to this terrestrial transport are found in the strong and deep thermal circulations associated with topography on Mars and with Mars dust storms. Observations of elevated dust layers on Mars further support the notion that non-local deep transport is an important mechanism in the atmosphere of Mars. On Titan, the presence of deep convective clouds almost assures that non-local, deep transport is occurring and these clouds may play a role in global cycling of energy, momentum, and methane. Based on the potential importance of non-local deep transport in Earth's atmosphere and supported by evidence for such transport in the atmospheres of Mars and Titan, greater attention to this mechanism in extraterrestrial atmospheres is warranted.

  4. The Earth's radiation budget and its relation to atmospheric hydrology: 2. Observations of cloud effects

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stephens, Graeme L.; Greenwald, Thomas J.

    1991-08-01

    This paper describes an observational study of the relationship between the cloudy sky components of the Earth's radiation budget (ERB) and space/time coincident observations of the sea surface temperature, microwave-derived cloud liquid water and cloud cover. The study uses two ERB data sets; Nimbus 7 narrow field-of-view, broadband scanning radiometer data from June 1979 to May 1980 and the Earth Radiation Budget Experiment broadband scanning data from March 1985 to February 1986. Cloud fluxes are derived from the ERB fluxes and estimates of the clear sky fluxes are described in a related paper. A new method that extends the cloud forcing analysis of ERB data is also introduced to estimate the cloud albedo. The zonally and seasonally averaged cloud flux components of the ERB are within 6 W m-2 for the two data sets. The general gross features of the global distributions of these fluxes also reproduce those reported in recent studies with the largest differences in mid-to-high latitude regions characterized by persistent cloud cover where the estimation of Nimbus 7 clear sky fluxes is suspect. A quantitative assessment of the impact of clouds on the greenhouse effect is given in terms of the greenhouse parameter introduced in a related study. This impact is significant, especially for deep convective clouds that form over the warmest waters of the oceans. It is also shown how the greenhouse effect of clouds increases as the liquid water path (LWP) of clouds increases in a manner analogous to that observed for water vapor. This increase is in direct contrast to many recent model studies of cloud feedback that ignore this influence. Cloud albedo data are grouped in categories corresponding to ranges of solar zenith angle. Albedos and longwave fluxes for the latitudinal ranges of these categories suggest that brighter, colder clouds exist over tropical land masses in comparison to tropical oceanic regions and vice versa for middle and high latitudes. While

  5. Titration of the Earth: Ocean-Atmosphere Evolution Recorded in Marine Carbonates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kah, L. C.

    2012-12-01

    feedback for understanding the temporal evolution of the ocean-atmosphere system.

  6. Planetary-scale wave structures of the earth's atmosphere revealed from the COSMIC observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Anisetty, S. K. A. V. Prasad Rao; Brahmanandam, P. S.; Uma, G.; Babu, A. Narendra; Huang, Ching-Yuang; Kumar, G. Anil; Ram, S. Tulasi; Wang, Hsiao-Lan; Chu, Yen-Hsyang

    2014-02-01

    GPS radio occultation (GPS RO) method, an active satellite-to-satellite remote sensing technique, is capable of producing accurate, all-weather, round the clock, global refractive index, density, pressure, and temperature profiles of the troposphere and stratosphere. This study presents planetary-scale equatorially trapped Kelvin waves in temperature profiles retrieved using COSMIC (Constellation Observing System for Meteorology, Ionosphere, and Climate) satellites during 2006-2009 and their interactions with background atmospheric conditions. It is found that the Kelvin waves are not only associated with wave periods of higher than 10 days (slow Kelvin waves) with higher zonal wave numbers (either 1 or 2), but also possessing downward phase progression, giving evidence that the source regions of them are located at lower altitudes. A thorough verification of outgoing longwave radiation (OLR) reveals that deep convection activity has developed regularly over the Indonesian region, suggesting that the Kelvin waves are driven by the convective activity. The derived Kelvin waves show enhanced (diminished) tendencies during westward (eastward) phase of the quasi-biennial oscillation (QBO) in zonal winds, implying a mutual relation between both of them. The El Niño and Southern Oscillation (ENSO) below 18 km and the QBO features between 18 and 27 km in temperature profiles are observed during May 2006-May 2010 with the help of an adaptive data analysis technique known as Hilbert Huang Transform (HHT). Further, temperature anomalies computed using COSMIC retrieved temperatures are critically evaluated during different phases of ENSO, which has revealed interesting results and are discussed in light of available literature.

  7. Small Satellites for Atmospheric and near earth Space sciences - the Indian perspectives of a low cost access to Space

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sridharan, R.

    Small satellites of 100-400 kg class are expected to play bigger roles in the years to come. With the advancement of technology in terms of miniaturization and also reliability, it has become possible to configure small satellites which otherwise would have demanded larger platforms, both in terms of weight and power. The atmospheric and near Earth space processes are truly multi-dimensional and are extremely complex with large temporal and spatial variability and also respond closely to the processes in the Sun. As a consequence, no single satellite mission would be able to provide the complete information thus warranting multiple missions. With the successful demonstration of multiple satellites launching capability, the spare capacity of the launch vehicles could be effectively and judiciously used for launching dedicated small scientific satellites as co passengers with negligible cost factor. This is viewed as an opening up of an otherwise difficult opportunity involving dedicated launches. With the prospect of multiple satellites for science missions becoming a reality the overall mission with an active life of 2-3 years could be realized with judicious choice of components. This is expected to bring in a larger user community in the country. The first step in this direction is the configuration of a modular micro and small satellite bus. The upcoming missions of TWSAT (Third world satellite), Youth Sat (active participation of the student community), SARAL (Satellite for ARGOs and Altimetry), SENSE/E and SENSE/P (Satellite for Earth's Near Space environment), ISTAG (Indian Satellite for Aerosols and Gases), are utilizing the above concepts. ISRO has also come out with AO's for Astronomy and Astrophysics payloads, as most of the stringent requirements of various experiments could be met with the small satellite platforms themselves. A brief outline of the upcoming and proposed activities would be presented and discussed in the talk.

  8. An investigation of a super-Earth exoplanet with a greenhouse-gas atmosphere using a general circulation model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zalucha, Angela M.; Michaels, Timothy I.; Madhusudhan, Nikku

    2013-11-01

    We use the Massachusetts Institute of Technology general circulation model (GCM) dynamical core, in conjunction with a Newtonian relaxation scheme that relaxes to a gray, analytical solution of the radiative transfer equation, to simulate a tidally locked, synchronously orbiting super-Earth exoplanet. This hypothetical exoplanet is simulated under the following main assumptions: (1) the size, mass, and orbital characteristics of GJ 1214b (Charbonneau, D. [2009]. Nature 462, 891-894), (2) a greenhouse-gas dominated atmosphere, (3), the gas properties of water vapor, and (4) a surface. We have performed a parameter sweep over global mean surface pressure (0.1, 1, 10, and 100 bar) and global mean surface albedo (0.1, 0.4, and 0.7). Given assumption (1) above, the period of rotation of this exoplanet is 1.58 Earth-days, which we classify as the rapidly rotating regime. Our parameter sweep differs from Heng and Vogt (Heng, K., Vogt, S.S. [2011]. Mon. Not. R. Astron. Soc. 415, 2145-2157), who performed their study in the slowly rotating regime and using Held and Suarez (Held, I.M., Suarez, M.J. [1994]. Bull. Am. Meteorol. Soc. 75 (10), 1825-1830) thermal forcing. This type of thermal forcing is a prescribed function, not related to any radiative transfer, used to benchmark Earth’s atmosphere. An equatorial, westerly, superrotating jet is a robust feature in our GCM results. This equatorial jet is westerly at all longitudes. At high latitudes, the flow is easterly. The zonal winds do show a change with global mean surface pressure. As global mean surface pressure increases, the speed of the equatorial jet decreases between 9 and 15 h local time (substellar point is located at 12 h local time). The latitudinal extent of the equatorial jet increases on the nightside. For the two greatest initial surface pressure cases, an increasingly westerly component of flow develops at middle to high latitudes between 11 and 18 h local time. On the nightside, the easterly flow in the

  9. Singular measures versus nondifferentiability: from the solid earth to the atmosphere and their interface (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lovejoy, S.; Schertzer, D. J.

    2010-12-01

    corrsponding length, area or volume of the integration set, such fluxes are singular with respect to Lebesgue measures (the scaling exponent K(q) - which is a cumulant generating function - diverges in the small scale limit i.e. as λ -> infinity). We give examples of such singular geomeasures ranging from ore concentrations, geopotential fields, topography, to surface and atmospheric radiances and to the state variables showing the ubiquity of singular measures throughout the geosciences. Classical geostatistics is based on point process random functions; it can easily handle nondifferentiability. However, it implicitly assumes that the relevant geomeasures are on the contrary regular with respect to Lebesgue measures. It would thus seem that real world geodata are outside the domain of application of classical geostatistics. We discuss the consequences.

  10. Control of the Earth's electric field intensity through solar wind modulation of galactic cosmic radiation: Support for a proposed atmospheric electrical sun-weather mechanism

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Markson, R.

    1980-01-01

    The ionospheric potential and galactic cosmic radiation, found to be inversely correlated with the solar wind velocity are examined as being germane to weather modification. Since the ionospheric potential is proportional to the fair weather electric field intensity and cosmic radiation is the dominant source of atmospheric ionization, it is concluded that the Earth's overall electric field varies in phase with atmospheric ionization and that the latter is modulated by the solar wind. A proposed mechanism, in which solar control of ionizing radiation influences atmospheric electrification and thus possibly cloud physical processes is discussed. An experimental approach to critically test the proposed mechanism through comparison of the temporal variation of the Earth's electric field with conditions in the interplanetary medium is outlined.

  11. Collision cross sections and diffusion parameters for H and D in atomic oxygen. [in upper earth and Venus atmospheres

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hodges, R. R., Jr.

    1993-01-01

    Modeling the behavior of H and D in planetary exospheres requires detailed knowledge of the differential scattering cross sections for all of the important neutral-neutral and ion-neutral collision processes affecting these species over their entire ranges of interaction energies. In the upper atmospheres of Earth, Venus, and other planets as well, the interactions of H and D with atomic oxygen determine the rates of diffusion of escaping hydrogen isotopes through the thermosphere, the velocity distributions of exospheric atoms that encounter the upper thermosphere, the lifetimes of exospheric orbiters with periapsides near the exobase, and the transfer of momentum in collisions with hot O. The nature of H-O and D-O collisions and the derivation of a data base consisting of phase shifts and the differential, total, and momentum transfer cross sections for these interactions in the energy range 0.001 - 10 eV are discussed. Coefficients of mutual diffusion and thermal diffusion factors are calculated for temperatures of planetary interest.

  12. Direct PO optimized dual-offset reflector antennas for small earth stations and for millimeter wave atmospheric sensors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schlobohm, Bernd; Arndt, Fritz; Kless, Juergen

    1992-06-01

    An efficient direct numerical synthesis method for dual-offset reflector antennas is described which is directly based on the physical optics procedure for both reflectors. The reflector surfaces are advantageously characterized in the spatial domain by a two-dimensional Fourier transformation. The method involves an evolution strategy optimization algorithm in order to immediately shape both reflectors so as to generate the desired far field with prescribed criteria. The efficiency of the design method is demonstrated for two computer-optimized dual-offset antenna design examples for space applications. The first is a very compact optimum-shaped Gregorian dual-offset earth-station antenna with high offset angle (70 deg) and small subreflector size (13 wavelengths). It achieved a very low sidelobe attenuation level within the envelope of only 23-25 log theta dBi and low cross-polarization attenuation (38 dB). The second is a shaped dual-offset Cassegrain atmospheric sensor antenna for 200 GHz. It demonstrates that beam scanning by more than 10 half-power beamwidths is possible with nearly constant half-power beamwidth by linearly displacing the subreflector, resulting in a very low mass to be moved.

  13. ESA Earth Explorer 8 Candidate Mission CarbonSat: Error Budget for Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide and Methane Retrievals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Buchwitz, M.; Bovensmann, H.; Reuter, M.; Krings, T.; Heymann, J.; Schneising, O.; Burrows, J. P.; Boesch, H.; Meijer, Y.; Sierk, B.; Loscher, A.; Caron, J.; Ingmann, P.

    2015-06-01

    CarbonSat is one of two candidate missions for ESA’s Earth Explorer 8 (EE8) satellite; one of them will be selected for implementation in November 2015 for a targeted launch date around 2023. The main goal of CarbonSat is to advance our knowledge of the sources and sinks, both natural and man-made, of the two most important anthropogenic greenhouse gases; carbon dioxide (CO2) and methane (CH4) from the global via the sub-continental to the local scale. CarbonSat will be the first satellite mission to image local scale emission hot spots of CO2 (e.g., cities, volcanoes, industrial areas) and CH4 (e.g., fossil fuel production, landfills, seeps) and to quantify their emissions and discriminate them from surrounding biospheric fluxes. The primary geophysical data products of CarbonSat are atmospheric colum-naveraged dry air mole fractions of CO2 and CH4 , i.e., XCO2 (in ppm) and XCH4 (in ppb), respectively. In addition, CarbonSat will deliver a number of secondary data products, which will also be of good quality, such as vegetation chlorophyll Sun-Induced Fluorescence (SIF) as retrieved from clear solar Fraunhofer lines located at 755 nm; SIF will be retrieved simultaneously with the primary products. Here we present an updated error budget using the latest retrieval algorithm and instrument/mission specification focusing on nadir observations over land.

  14. Experimental investigation of anaerobic nitrogen fixation rates with varying pressure, temperature and metal concentration with application to the atmospheric evolution of early Earth and Mars.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gupta, Prateek

    2012-07-01

    The atmosphere of the early Earth is thought to have been significantly different than the modern composition of 21% O2 and 78% N2, yet the planet has been clearly established as hosting microbial life as far back as 3.8 billion years ago. As such, constraining the atmospheric composition of the early Earth is fundamental to establishing a database of habitable atmospheric compositions. A similar argument can be made for the planet Mars, where nitrates have been hypothesized to exist in the subsurface. During the early period on Mars when liquid water was likely more abundant, life may have developed to take advantage of available nitrates and a biologically-driven Martian nitrogen cycle could have evolved. Early Earth atmospheric composition has been investigated numerically, but only recently has the common assumption of a pN2 different than modern been investigated. Nonetheless, these latest attempts fail to take into account a key atmospheric parameter: life. On modern Earth, nitrogen is cycled vigorously by biology. The nitrogen cycle likely operated on the early Earth, but probably differed in the metabolic processes responsible, dominantly due to the lack of abundant oxygen which stabilizes oxidized forms of N that drive de-nitrification today. Recent advances in evolutionary genomics suggest that microbial pathways that are relatively uncommon today (i.e. vanadium and iron-based nitrogen fixation) probably played important roles in the early N cycle. We quantitatively investigate in the laboratory the effects of variable pressure, temperature and metal concentration on the rates of anoxic nitrogen fixation, as possible inputs for future models investigating atmospheric evolution, and better understand the evolution of the nitrogen cycle on Earth. A common anaerobic methanogenic archaeal species with i) a fully sequenced genome, ii) all three nitrogenases (molybdenum, vanadium and iron-based) and iii) the ability to be genetically manipulated will be used as

  15. Response of Atmospheric Biomarkers to NOx-Induced Photochemistry Generated by Stellar Cosmic Rays for Earth-like Planets in the Habitable Zone of M Dwarf Stars

    PubMed Central

    Grießmeier, Jean-Mathias; von Paris, Philip; Patzer, A. Beate C.; Lammer, Helmut; Stracke, Barbara; Gebauer, Stefanie; Schreier, Franz; Rauer, Heike

    2012-01-01

    Abstract Understanding whether M dwarf stars may host habitable planets with Earth-like atmospheres and biospheres is a major goal in exoplanet research. If such planets exist, the question remains as to whether they could be identified via spectral signatures of biomarkers. Such planets may be exposed to extreme intensities of cosmic rays that could perturb their atmospheric photochemistry. Here, we consider stellar activity of M dwarfs ranging from quiet up to strong flaring conditions and investigate one particular effect upon biomarkers, namely, the ability of secondary electrons caused by stellar cosmic rays to break up atmospheric molecular nitrogen (N2), which leads to production of nitrogen oxides (NOx) in the planetary atmosphere, hence affecting biomarkers such as ozone (O3). We apply a stationary model, that is, without a time dependence; hence we are calculating the limiting case where the atmospheric chemistry response time of the biomarkers is assumed to be slow and remains constant compared with rapid forcing by the impinging stellar flares. This point should be further explored in future work with time-dependent models. We estimate the NOx production using an air shower approach and evaluate the implications using a climate-chemical model of the planetary atmosphere. O3 formation proceeds via the reaction O+O2+M→O3+M. At high NOx abundances, the O atoms arise mainly from NO2 photolysis, whereas on