Articles | Volume 24, issue 3
19 May 2006
 | 19 May 2006

Lidar observations of middle atmospheric gravity wave activity over a low-latitude site (Gadanki, 13.5° N, 79.2° E)

V. Sivakumar, P. B. Rao, and H. Bencherif

Abstract. The low-latitude middle atmospheric gravity wave characteristics are presented using 310 nights of Rayleigh lidar observations made at Gadanki (13.5° N, 79.2° E) over the period from March 1998 to December 2002. The gravity wave characteristics are presented in terms of vertical wave number and frequency spectra, along with the estimated potential energy for the four seasons, namely, spring, summer, autumn and winter. The computed wave number spectra for both the stratosphere and the mesosphere are found to differ significantly from a saturated model predicted spectrum. The spectra were found to be shallower at lower wave numbers and steeper at higher wave numbers with transition at ~8.85×10-4 cy/m. The computed frequency spectra seem to follow the model plot with a power law index of -5/3 above a frequency of ~2×10-4 Hz. The estimated potential energy per unit mass increases gradually up to ~60 km and then rather rapidly above this height to reach values of the order of 200J/kg at ~70 km.