Journal Article First imaging and identification of a noctilucent cloud from multiple sites in Hokkaido (43.2-44.4 degrees N), Japan

Suzuki, Hidehiko  ,  Sakanoi, Kazuyo  ,  Nishitani, Nozomu  ,  Ogawa, Tadahiko  ,  Ejiri, Mitsumu K.  ,  Kubota, Minoru  ,  Kinoshita, Takenori  ,  Murayama, Yasuhiro  ,  Fujiyoshi, Yasushi

68p.182 , 2016-11-14 , Springer
Simultaneous imaging observations of a noctilucent cloud (NLC) from five sites in Hokkaido, Japan (43.17-45.36 degrees N), were successfully carried out using digital cameras in the early hours of the morning (around 02:00 LST) on June 21, 2015. This is the first NLC event that has been captured from multiple sites in Japan. The simultaneous images obtained from multiple sites made it possible to calculate the exact altitude (=83.9 +/- 0.1 km) and spatial distribution (47.5-50.0 degrees N and 143.0-147.5 degrees E) of the NLC by triangulation and image correlation methods. Based on a comparison of atmospheric parameters of the upper mesosphere provided by satellites and a middle-frequency (MF) radar in northern Hokkaido (Wakkanai) with the cloud distribution obtained from the Aeronomy of Ice in the Mesosphere satellite, this particular event is considered to be the result of southward advection of the NLC from a higher-latitude (i.e., colder) region. Anomalies in the upper mesospheric temperature of the northern hemispheric summer in 2015 were examined using AURA satellite data, because this is the first NLC event that has been identified in Japan. However, no remarkable temperature variations relative to other years were found in upper mesosphere. Based on a comparison between the NLC period and the record of sky conditions archived by the Japan Meteorological Agency, a high percentage of cloud (especially low-level) cover during the summer in Hokkaido cannot be ruled out as a possible reason why the NLC had not previously been sighted in Hokkaido.

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