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airglow

Overview page. Subjects: Astronomy and Astrophysics — Meteorology and Climatology.

A weak background emission of light over the whole sky, resulting mainly from the excitation of atmospheric oxygen at an altitude of around 100 km by solar radiation; also known as nightglownull...

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Aqua

Overview page. Subjects: Meteorology and Climatology — Astronomy and Astrophysics.

A NASA polar-orbiting satellite, part of the Earth Observing System, the second to be launched (after the Terra satellite) on 4 May 2002. It is primarily designed to monitor the Earth's...

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Aura

Overview page. Subjects: Meteorology and Climatology — Astronomy and Astrophysics.

A NASA polar-orbiting satellite, part of the Earth Observing System, the third to be launched (after the Terra and Aqua satellites). Its principal mission is to monitor atmospheric...

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aurora

Overview page. Subjects: Astronomy and Astrophysics — Meteorology and Climatology.

An emission of light from the Earth's high atmosphere, caused principally by oxygen atoms or nitrogen molecules that are excited by electrons accelerated within the magnetosphere. The...

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auroral oval

Overview page. Subjects: Meteorology and Climatology — Astronomy and Astrophysics.

A high-latitude ring of more or less permanent aurora, girdling the geomagnetic pole at a distance of 2000–2500 km under quiet geomagnetic conditions. There are two ovals, one in either...

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automatic picture transmission

Overview page. Subjects: Meteorology and Climatology — Astronomy and Astrophysics.

(APT)

The continuous transmission of images of the Earth by polar-orbiting meteorological satellites. The radiometer scan is perpendicular to the plane of the satellite's orbit, so...

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black-body radiation

Overview page. Subjects: Meteorology and Climatology — Astronomy and Astrophysics.

The radiation emitted by a hypothetical black body, i.e. one that is capable of both absorbing all radiation incident upon it and radiating the maximum possible intensity of radiation for a...

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brightness temperature

Overview page. Subjects: Meteorology and Climatology — Astronomy and Astrophysics.

(T B or T b)

The apparent temperature of an astronomical source calculated on the assumption that the source is a black-body emitter. For a thin plasma, the...

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Cloudsat

Overview page. Subjects: Meteorology and Climatology — Astronomy and Astrophysics.

A NASA polar-orbiting satellite, launched (together with Calipso) on 26 April 2006, and now part of the Afternoon-Train constellation. It is specifically designed to monitor clouds with a...

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coronal hole

Overview page. Subjects: Astronomy and Astrophysics — Meteorology and Climatology.

A region in the Sun's corona of very low density, about 100 times less than that of coronal active regions. Coronal holes show up as apparent voids in X-ray images or, at the limb, by an...

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Envisat

Overview page. Subjects: Meteorology and Climatology — Astronomy and Astrophysics.

A European polar-orbiting satellite launched in 2002 and designed to monitor various atmospheric and surface properties, in part to ensure continuity with the measurements made by the ERS-1...

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European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts

Overview page. Subjects: Astronomy and Astrophysics — Meteorology and Climatology.

(ECMWF)

An international organization, at present supported by a consortium of 25 European states, set up in 1973 for the development of numerical methods of medium-range...

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fireball

Overview page. Subjects: Astronomy and Astrophysics — Meteorology and Climatology.

A meteor whose apparent magnitude exceeds that of the planet Venus (magnitude −5 or brighter). Fireballs are comparatively rare, perhaps fewer than one per thousand meteors. During major...

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gegenschein

Overview page. Subjects: Astronomy and Astrophysics — Meteorology and Climatology.

A faint, diffuse oval glow some 10° across, appearing in the midnight sky directly opposite the Sun; also known as the counterglow (its meaning in German). The gegenschein is produced by...

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global Ozone Monitoring by Occultation of Stars

Overview page. Subjects: Astronomy and Astrophysics — Meteorology and Climatology.

(GOMOS)

An instrument carried by the Envisat satellite to determine the distribution of ozone in the stratosphere. The instrument uses the absorption by ozone of ultraviolet...

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global Ozone Monitoring Experiment

Overview page. Subjects: Meteorology and Climatology — Astronomy and Astrophysics.

(GOME)

An instrument carried by the European satellite ERS-2 for mapping the global ozone layer. Its two-dimensional mapping function was extended to three dimensions by the more...

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heliostat

Overview page. Subjects: Meteorology and Climatology — Astronomy and Astrophysics.

A flat mirror on an equatorial mounting, driven to follow the Sun across the sky and reflect its light into a stationary telescope. If the telescope is oriented parallel with the Earth's...

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International Years of the Quiet Sun

Overview page. Subjects: Meteorology and Climatology — Astronomy and Astrophysics.

The period from 1964 January 1 to 1965 December 31, near solar minimum, when solar and geophysical phenomena were studied by observatories around the world and by spacecraft to improve our...

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limb

Overview page. Subjects: Astronomy and Astrophysics — Meteorology and Climatology.

The edge of the visible disk of any astronomical body, such as the Sun, Moon, or a planet. In meteorology, the term is sometimes applied to the outer edge of the atmosphere.

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magnetotail

Overview page. Subjects: Meteorology and Climatology — Astronomy and Astrophysics.

The part of a planet's magnetosphere that is elongated in the direction of the solar wind (i.e. away from the Sun). The Earth's magnetotail (the geotail) extends beyond the Moon's orbit,...

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