Transport of Air to the Stratosphere: Perspectives From the Aura Microwave Limb Sounder (MLS) Instrument.
Thursday, 18 December 2014: 8:00 AM
Transport of air from the troposphere to the stratosphere takes place through a variety of routes, including slow ascent through the Tropical Tropopause Layer, extra-tropical mixing in the "middleworld" and rapid lofting by deep convection (including pyro-convection) in mid and high latitudes. These transport processes determine the entry composition and humidity of the stratosphere, and thus play an important role in ozone layer stability and climate. This paper reviews the insights into these processes obtained through satellite profile measurements of atmospheric composition, humidity and clouds, in particular the measurements from the Microwave Limb Sounder (MLS) on the Aura satellite launched in 2004. We describe the available satellite observations and review findings from previous studies using these observations to investigate troposphere-to-stratosphere transport. In addition, we discuss the applicability of Lagrangian-based analysis approaches (including the "Match" technique) to quantifying the lofting of tropospheric air into the stratosphere by midlatitude deep convection.