Annual and Diurnal Temperature Variations in the Upper Atmosphere

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Wexler, H. (2011)

An attempt is made to determine the annual and diurnal variations of temperature to a height of 80 km by knitting together available observations and theoretical results. The observations include radiosonde data, meteor-determined densities, V-2 rocket observations, anomalous propagation of sound, and infrared spectroscopy. The theory most heavily relied upon is the radiative computation made by Gowan. For the annual temperature range there is reasonably good agreement between theory and observations, such that in the upper ozonosphere (30 to 55 km), summer temperatures are higher than winter temperatures by amounts as large or larger than than these at the surface. As in lower levels, the annual temperature range aloft increases with latitude. For the diurnal temperature variations there is a large disagreement between the computations of Gowan and Penndorf. However, available evidence appears to favor Gowan's computations, which, together with other considerations, indicate a diurnal temperature range of the order of 10 to 15° C.DOI: 10.1111/j.2153-3490.1950.tb00338.x
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