Neutral winds in the lower thermosphere from Dynamics Explorer 2

T. L. Killeen, B. Nardi, P. N. Purcell, R. G. Roble, T. J. Fuller‐Rowel, D. Rees

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Doppler line profile measurements of the OI λ557.7 nm “green line” emission, made by the Fabry‐Perot interferometer on Dynamics Explorer 2, have provided altitude profiles of the meridional component of the lower‐thermospheric neutral wind. The wind inversion technique of Nardi [1991] has been used to extract the neutral wind profiles from the line‐of‐sight measurements. Individual λ557.7 nm Doppler line profiles and inverted volume‐emission‐rate and neutral‐wind profiles are presented. Neutral wind measurements from the ∼120 km altitude level, obtained on multiple orbital passes over the summer hemisphere polar region, have been merged to produce a synthesized averaged “vector” wind field in geomagnetic coordinates. The wind pattern exhibits a region of anticyclonic vorticity in the daytime sector of the magnetic polar cap. Averaged winds of ∼300 m/sec in the equatorial direction are observed in the early morning sector. The satellite winds are in reasonable agreement with the predictions of the NCAR and UCL thermosphere general circulation models, with significant regional discrepancies evident in both magnitude and direction.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1093-1096
Number of pages4
JournalGeophysical Research Letters
Issue number11
StatePublished - Jun 2 1992
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geophysics
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)


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