Characterization of Gravity Waves in Three Dimensions in the Daytime Thermosphere Using Combined Optical and Radio Measurements and Estimation of Horizontal Neutral Winds

Gravity waves, which are considered omnipresent in the Earth's upper atmosphere, are generally investigated by monitoring the fluctuations in different atmospheric parameters. Here, we report the propagation characteristics of thermospheric gravity waves both in horizontal and vertical directions obtained using collocated optical and radio measurements from Ahmedabad, India for February 2021. The measurements of OI 630.0 nm dayglow emission rates over zenith are used to derive time periods of gravity waves. Wave number analyses of variations in the emission over a large field-of-view have been performed to derive gravity wave scale sizes and propagation characteristics in the horizontal direction. Time periods, horizontal scale sizes, and propagation directions are found to be in the range of 31–125 min, 78–243 km, and 203°–248° from east, respectively. Vertical wavelengths of the gravity waves are obtained from radio measurements and are in the range of 26–247 km. As the gravity wave characteristics are influenced by the ambient neutral winds, the measured gravity wave propagation characteristics in three dimensions have been used as inputs into the gravity wave dispersion relation to estimate the magnitudes of thermospheric horizontal neutral winds. These estimated daytime winds in the direction of wave propagation are found to be in the range of 1–105 ms−1, and they compare well with those measured independently from MIGHTI added HWM14 model-derived winds. The daytime winds estimated by this approach are possibly the first of their kind as obtained from ground-based measurements.


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Authors: Kumar, Sunil, Mandal, Subir, Pallamraju, Duggirala

On this site: Subir Mandal
7 March, 2023
Journal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics / 128
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