Date of Award

8-2007

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Legacy Department

Physics

Advisor

Larsen, Miguel F.

Committee Member

Meriwether , John

Committee Member

Leimacher , Gerald

Committee Member

Meyer , Bradley S.

Abstract

Sounding rocket campaigns ARIA I through ARIA IV, CODA 2, HEX 1, JOULE 1 and JOULE 2 all carried out at Poker Flat Research Range at Alaska, covering the geomagnetic condition from quiet to highly disturbed. Trimethyl aluminum (TMA) were released during the rocket flights to study the mesosphere and lower thermosphere neutral wind at high-latitude region. The results of horizontal neutral wind profiles are presented. The comparison shows that under disturbed condition the wind velocity is stronger and the jet feature at the bottom side of wind maximum with unstable wind shear is lifted to a higher altitude. Under the quiet condition, the dominance forcing acting on the neutral atmosphere is the upward propagating tides below 120 km and the Lorentz force and viscosity in the region above 120 km. While under the disturbed condition, the tidal force is disrupted by Hall drag in the region of 105--125 km and the wind profile is a result of complex interplay of tidal force, Lorentz force and Joule heating. Modeling works have also been presented. The comparisons are poor for the global general circulation models and are better for localized non-hydrostatic models. It is also concluded that a detailed high-resolution time-history of auroral forcing and the upward propagating tidal forcing are both important for theoretical model to predict the small scale features of the horizontal neutral wind in the auroral E region and lower F region.

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