2002 Annual

Thursday, 17 January 2002: 2:15 PM
An Empirically Developed Forecast Model for the Surface Layer Stability Transition Period
Gail-Tirrell Vaucher, Army Research Laboratory, White Sands Missile Range, NM
Poster PDF (71.3 kB)
Fifteen years of observations and field experimentation have yielded a surface layer model capable of forecasting the time of transition between the stable, nighttime atmosphere to the unstable daytime atmosphere over a desert and under clear skies. For years, astronomers have sought to eliminate the atmosphere's corrupting impact on their 'Seeing' capabilities. Unfortunately, the naturally occurring atmospheric density variations make this quest most difficult. There are, however, periods within a 24 hr day cycle in which the atmospheric density variations drop to a minimum. These are called "Neutral Events" and are grossly characterized as occurring when the nighttime stable condition transitions to a daytime unstable condition (and visa versa). In the process of forecasting these events, two categories of conditions were defined: Ideal and non-ideal. This paper will focus on the ideal conditions and the empirically-derived major contributors to the forecast model.

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