Storm Time Variation of Radiative Cooling by Nitric Oxide as Observed by TIMED-SABER and GUVI


The variation of O/N2 (reference to N2 column density 1017\ cm-2) and nitric oxide radiative emission flux exiting the thermosphere have been studied over the Northern Hemisphere during the superstorm event of 7\textendash12 November 2004. The data have been obtained from Global Ultraviolet Imager (GUVI) and Sounding of the Atmosphere using Broadband Emission Radiometry (SABER) on board the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)\textquoterights Thermosphere, Ionosphere, Mesosphere Energetics and Dynamics (TIMED) satellite. The NO radiative flux is observed to show an anti-correlation with O/N2 on a global scale. Both NO radiative flux and O/N2 ratio show equatorward motion with maximum penetration in western longitude sectors. A local variation of O, O2, and N2 densities have been calculated using NRLMSISE-00 model over a midlatitude location (55\textdegreeN,180\textdegreeE). On a local scale, model calculated O/O2 and O/N2 ratios are found to follow the observations made by GUVI. The collisional excitation of NO with atomic oxygen is the most dominant process for the total cooling rate. The SABER-retrieved NO cooling rate (CR) at a local site suggests an enhancement during the storm period with the peak emission rate closely correlated to the progression of the storm. The peak emission altitude of NO CR moves upward during the main phase of the storm. The NO abundance has been calculated by using cooling rate and Nitric Oxide Empirical Model (NOEM) model. Both these suggest a vary large (3\textendash15 times) increase in NO density during the storm, which is required to account the changes in NO radiative flux. A similar kind of enhancement in NO abundance is also noticed in Student Nitric Oxide Explorer observations during intense geomagnetic storms.

Year of Publication
Journal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics
Number of Pages
Date Published
Download citation