Atmos. Chem. Phys. Discuss., 10, 17307-17340, 2010
© Author(s) 2010. This work is distributed
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Analysis of SAGE II ozone of the middle and upper stratosphere for its response to a decadal-scale forcing
E. Remsberg1 and G. Lingenfelser2
1NASA Langley Research Center, 21 Langley Blvd., Mail Stop 401B, Hampton, VA, 23681, USA
2SSAI, 1 Enterprise Parkway, Hampton, VA, 23661, USA

Abstract. Stratospheric Aerosol and Gas Experiment (SAGE II) Version 6.2 ozone profiles are analyzed for their decadal-scale responses in the middle and upper stratosphere from September 1991 to August 2005, a time span for which the trends in reactive chlorine are relatively small. The profile data are averaged within twelve, 20°-wide latitude bins from 55° S to 55° N and at eleven altitudes from 27.5 to 52.5 km. The separate, 14-yr data time series are analyzed using multiple linear regression (MLR) models that include seasonal, interannual, 11-yr sinusoid, and linear trend terms. Proxies are not used for the interannual, solar uv-flux, or reactive chlorine terms. Instead, the present analysis focuses on the periodic 11-yr terms to see whether they are in-phase with that of a direct, uv-flux forcing or are dominated by some other decadal-scale influence. It is shown that they are in-phase over most of the latitude/altitude domain and that they have max minus min variations between 25° S and 25° N that peak near 4% between 30 and 40 km. Model simulations of the direct effects of uv-flux forcings agree with this finding. Ozone in the middle stratosphere of the northern subtropics is perturbed during 1991–1992, following the eruption of Pinatubo. There are also pronounced decadal-scale variations in the ozone of the upper stratosphere for the middle latitudes of the Northern Hemisphere, presumably due to dynamical forcings. The 11-yr ozone responses of the Southern Hemisphere are relatively free of those extra influences. The associated linear trend terms from the analyses are negative (−2 to −4%/decade) for this 14-yr time period and are nearly constant across latitude in the upper stratosphere. This finding is consistent with the fact that total and reactive chlorine are not changing appreciably from 1991 to 2005. It is concluded that the satellite, solar occultation technique can be used to record the responses of stratospheric ozone to the decadal-scale forcings from the solar uv-flux, as well as those due to the long-term changes from dynamic forcings, reactive chlorine, and the greenhouse gases.

Citation: Remsberg, E. and Lingenfelser, G.: Analysis of SAGE II ozone of the middle and upper stratosphere for its response to a decadal-scale forcing, Atmos. Chem. Phys. Discuss., 10, 17307-17340, doi:10.5194/acpd-10-17307-2010, 2010.
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