Examination of ozonesonde data for trends and trend changes incorporating solar and Arctic oscillation signals

Alvin J. Miller, Airong Cai, George Tiao, Donald J. Wuebbles, Lawrence E. Flynn, Shi Keng Yang, Elizabeth C. Weatherhead, Vitali Fioletov, Irina Petropavlovskikh, Xiao Li Meng, Serge Guillas, Ronald M. Nagatani, Gregory C. Reinsel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


One major question that arises with the implementation of the Montreal Protocol and its subsequent conventions is our ability to determine that an ozone "recovery" is in process. Toward this we have utilized a statistical model suggested by Reinsel et al. (2002) that utilizes the idea of a trend and a trend change at a specific time and applied it to 12 ozonesonde stations in the midlatitudes of the Northern Hemisphere. The lower stratosphere, in particular, is of significance as this is where the ozone concentration is a maximum and also where heterogeneous ozone losses have been noted. This statistical methodology suffers, however, from the ambiguities of having to select a specific time for the ozone trend to change and the fact that the Mt Pinatubo volcanic aerosols impacted the ozone amount. Within this paper, we analyze the ozonesonde station data utilizing the above model but examine the statistical stability of the computed results by allowing the point of inflection to change from 1995 through 2000 and also exclude varying amounts of data from the post-Pinatubo period. The results indicate that while the impacts of deleting data and changing the inflection point are nontrivial, the overall results are consistent in that there has been a major change in the ozone trend in the time frame of 1996 and that a reasonable scenario is to utilize a change point in 1996 and exclude 2 years of data after the 1991 Mt. Pinatubo eruption. In addition, we include a term for the Arctic oscillation within the statistical model and demonstrate that it is statistically significant.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numberD13305
JournalJournal of Geophysical Research Atmospheres
Issue number13
StatePublished - Jul 16 2006

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Materials Chemistry
  • Polymers and Plastics
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry


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