Mid-latitude thermo spheric zonal winds during the equinoxes

W. T. Sivla*, H. McCreadie

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The diurnal variation of the mid-latitude upper thermosphere zonal winds during equinoxes has been studied using data recently generated from CHAMP measurements from 2002 to 2004 using an iterative algorithm. The wind data was separated into two geomagnetic activity levels, representing high geomagnetic activity level (Ap > 8) and low geomagnetic activity level (Ap ⩽ 8). The data were further separated into two solar flux levels; with F10.7 > 140 for high and F10.7 ⩽ 140 for low. Geomagnetic activity is a correlator just as significant as solar activity. The response of mid-latitude thermospheric zonal winds to increases in geomagnetic disturbances and solar flux is evident. With increase in geomagnetic activity, midday to midnight winds are generally less eastward and generally more westward after the about midnight transitions. The results show that east west transitions generally occurred about midnight hours for all the situations analyzed. The west to east transition occurs from 1400–1500 MLT. Enhanced westward averaged zonal wind speeds going above 150 ms−1 are observed in the north hemisphere mid-latitude about sunrise hours (∼0700–1100 MLT). Nighttime winds in the north hemisphere are in good agreement with previous single station ground observations over Millstone Hill. Improved ground observations and multi satellite observations from space will greatly improve temporal coverage of the Earth’s thermosphere

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)499-508
Number of pages10
JournalAdvances in Space Research
Volume54
Issue number3
Early online date21 Mar 2014
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 01 Aug 2014

Keywords

  • Thermospheric zonal winds
  • Equinoxes
  • Geomagnetic activity
  • Mid-latitudes
  • GEOMAGNETIC STORMS
  • THERMOSPHERIC DYNAMICS
  • NEUTRAL WINDS
  • SAINT-SANTIN
  • CHAMP
  • IONOSPHERE
  • CLIMATOLOGY
  • LATITUDE
  • CIRCULATION
  • ATMOSPHERE

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