Virginia Institute of Marine Science
JOURNAL OF GEOPHYSICAL RESEARCH-SPACE PHYSICS
This article proposes a technique to map the tidal winds in the mesosphere and lower thermosphere (MLT) region from the observations of a four-station meteor radar chain located at middle- and low-latitudes along the 120 degrees E meridian in the Northern Hemisphere. A 1month dataset of the horizontal winds in the altitude range of 80-100km is observed during December 2011. We first decompose the tidal winds into mean, diurnal, semidiurnal, and terdiurnal components for each station. It is found that the diurnal/semidiurnal components dominate at the low-latitude/midlatitude stations. Their amplitudes increase at lower altitudes and then decrease at higher altitudes after reaching a peak in the MLT region. Hough functions of the classical tidal theory are then used to fit the latitudinal distribution of each decomposed component. The diurnal component is found to be dominated by the first symmetric (1, 1) mode. Yet for the semidiurnal and terdiurnal components, the corresponding dominant modes are the second symmetric modes (2, 4) and (3, 5), and considerable contributions are also from the first antisymmetric modes (2, 3), (3, 4) and second antisymmetric modes (2, 5), (3, 6). Based on the decomposed results, we further map the horizontal winds in the domains of latitude, altitude and local time. The mapped horizontal winds successfully reproduce the local time versus altitudinal distributions of the original observations at the four stations. Thus, we conclude that the meteor radar chain is useful to monitor and study the regional characteristics of the tidal winds in the MLT region.
metoer radar; MLT wind observation; upper atmospheric tides; Hough mode
Yu, You; Wan, Weixing; Ning, Baiqi; Liu, Libo; Wang, Zhengui; Hu, LianHuan; and Ren, Zhipeng, Tidal wind mapping from observations of a meteor radar chain in December 2011 (2013). JOURNAL OF GEOPHYSICAL RESEARCH-SPACE PHYSICS, 118, 2321-2332.