A meteor radar chain located along the 120°E meridian in the Northern Hemisphere from low to middle latitudes provides long-term horizontal wind observations of the mesosphere and lower thermosphere (MLT) region. In this study, we report a seasonal variation and its latitudinal feature in the horizontal mean wind in the MLT region observed by six meteor radar instruments located at Mohe (53.5°N, 122.3°E), Beijing (40.3°N, 116.2°E), Mengcheng (33.4°N, 116.5°E), Wuhan (30.6°N, 114.4°E), Kunming (25.6°N, 108.3°E), and Fuke (19.5°N, 109.1°E) stations. In addition, we compare the wind in the MLT region measured by the meteor radar stations with those simulated by the Whole Atmosphere Community Climate Model (WACCM). In general, the WACCM appears to capture well the seasonal and latitudinal variations in the zonal wind component. In particular, the temporal evolution of the eastward zonal wind maximum shifts from July to May as the latitude decreases. However, the simulated WACCM meridional wind exhibits differences from the meteor radar observations.
One of the important effects of the ionospheric modification by high-power waves is the airglow enhancement. Both the thermal electrons and the dissociation recombination contribute to generate the airglow emissions during HF heating. However, the relative importance of the airglow emission induced by dissociative recombination and thermal electrons has been rarely investigated. In this study, we carry out a simulation study on the airglow produced by high-power HF heating at nighttime associated with dissociative recombination and thermal electrons. SAMI2 (Sami2 is Another Model of the Ionosphere) is employed to simulate the ionospheric variations during the HF heating. The main conclusions from this study are as follows: (1) For the airglow induced by dissociative recombination, both 630.0 nm and 557.7 nm emissions show a decrease at the heating wave reflection height during the heating period, while when the heating is turned off, an increase is shown at lower altitudes. The reduction of airglow during the heating is caused by the rapid increase of electron temperature and the diffusion of plasmas dominates the after-heating airglow enhancement. (2) 630.0 nm emission due to thermal electrons is greatly enhanced at the wave reflection height, indicating that thermal electrons play a major role in exciting 630.0 nm emission. For the 557.7 nm emission, the excitation threshold (4.17 eV) is too high for thermal electrons. (3) The combined effect of dissociative recombination and thermal electrons could be the possible reason for the observed X-mode (extraordinary mode) suppression of 630.0 nm airglow during O-mode (ordinary mode) enhancement.
In this research, the roles of gravity waves and planetary waves in the change to middle atmospheric residual circulation during a sudden stratospheric warming period are differentiated and depicted separately by adopting the downward control principle. Our analysis shows clear anomalous poleward residual circulation patterns from the equator to high latitudes in the lower winter stratosphere. At the same time, upward mean flows are identified at high latitudes of the winter upper stratosphere and mesosphere, which turn equatorward in the mesosphere and reach as far as the tropical region, and consequently the extratropical region in the summer hemisphere. The downward control principle shows that anomalous mesospheric residual circulation patterns, including interhemispheric coupling, are solely caused by the change in gravity wave forcing resulting from the reversal of the winter stratospheric zonal wind. Nevertheless, both planetary waves and gravity waves are important to variations in the winter stratospheric circulation, but with opposite effects.
In this paper, we use wind observations by a Doppler wind LiDAR near Delingha (37.4°N, 97.4°E), Qinghai, Northwestern China to study the characteristics of inertial gravity waves in the stratosphere. We focus on 10–12 December 2013, a particularly interesting case study. Most of the time, the inertial gravity waves extracted from the LiDAR measurements were stationary with vertical wavelengths of about 9–11 km and horizontal wavelengths of about 800–1000 km. However, for parts of the observational period in this case study, a hodograph analysis indicates that different inertial gravity wave propagation features were present at lower and upper altitudes. In the middle and upper stratosphere (~30–50 km), the waves propagated downward, especially during a period of stronger winds, and to the northwest–southeast. In the lower stratosphere and upper troposphere (~10–20 km), however, waves with upward propagation and northeast–southwest orientation were dominant. By taking into account reanalysis data and satellite observations, we have confirmed the presence of different wave patterns in the lower and upper stratosphere during this part of the observational period. The combined data sets suggest that the different wave patterns at lower and upper height levels are likely to have been associated with the presence of lower and upper stratospheric jet streams.