Articles | Volume 19, issue 4
Technical note
28 Feb 2019
Technical note |  | 28 Feb 2019

Technical note: Bimodality in mesospheric OH rotational population distributions and implications for temperature measurements

Konstantinos S. Kalogerakis

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Subject: Radiation | Research Activity: Remote Sensing | Altitude Range: Mesosphere | Science Focus: Physics (physical properties and processes)
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Cited articles

Adler-Golden, S.: Kinetic parameters for OH nightglow modeling consistent with recent laboratory measurements, J. Geophys. Res., 102, 19969–19976, 1997. 
Anlauf, K. G., Kuntz, P. J., Maylotte, D. H., Pacey, P. D., and Polanyi, J. C.: Energy distribution among reaction products. Part 2. – H+X2 and X+HY, Discuss. Faraday Soc. 44, 183–193,, 1967. 
Beaud, P., Radi, P. P., Franzke, D., Frey, H.-M., Mischler, B., Tzannis, A. P., and Gerber, T.: Picosecond investigation of the collisional deactivation of OH A2Σ+(v=1, N=4, 12) in an atmospheric-pressure flame, Appl. Opt., 37, 3354–3367, 1998. 
Brooke, J. S. A., Bernath, P. F., Western, C. M., Sneden, C., Afşar, M., Li, G., and Gordon, I. E.: Line strengths of rovibrational and rotational transitions in the X2Π ground state of OH, J. Quant. Spectrosc. Ra., 168, 142–157, 2016. 
Charters, P. E. and Polanyi, J. C.: Energy distribution among reaction products. Part 1 – The reaction atomic hydrogen plus molecular chlorine, Faraday Soc. Discuss., 33, 107–117, 1962. 
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Light emission from energetic hydroxyl radical, OH*, is a prominent feature in spectra of the night sky. It is routinely used to determine the temperature of the atmosphere near 90 km. This note shows that the common practice of using only a few emission features from low rotational excitation to determine rotational temperatures does not account for the bimodality of the OH population distributions and can lead to large systematic errors.
Final-revised paper