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An observational study of the ozone dilution effect: Ozone transport in the austral spring stratosphereIn a previous observational analysis, Atkinson et al (1989) ascribed a sudden decrease in Southern Hemisphere midlatitude total ozone during December 1987 to an 'ozone dilution effect' brought about by the breakup of the polar stratospheric vortex at that time. A question alluded to but unanswered by that study was the degree to which the observed total ozone decrease might have been caused by the quasi-horizontal equatorward transport of 'ozone hold' air from within the vortex, and to what degree by the vertical advection from lower levels of air naturally low in ozone, a dynamical adjustment process which must accompany the equatorward outbreak of a discrete high-latitude airmass. In the present study, analyses of Ertel potential vorticity, TOMS total ozone, and SAGE and ozone sonde vertical profile data are employed using a novel technique to examine the 1987 event in greater detail, to answer this question. Recent progress is then reported in refining the technique and extending the investigation to examine the dynamical evolution of the austral spring stratosphere during other recent years, to shed more light on the precise nature, frequency, and severity of such 'ozone dilution' events, and the effect that this process may have on long term ozone behavior in the Southern Hemisphere.
Document ID
Document Type
Conference Paper
Atkinson, Roger J. (Bureau of Meteorology Melbourne, Australia)
Plumb, R. Alan (Massachusetts Inst. of Tech. Cambridge, MA, United States)
Date Acquired
September 6, 2013
Publication Date
April 1, 1994
Publication Information
Publication: NASA. Goddard Space Flight Center, Ozone in the Troposphere and Stratosphere, Part 2
Subject Category
Funding Number(s)
Distribution Limits
Work of the US Gov. Public Use Permitted.

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