Accession Number:

AD0604786

Title:

DIFFUSION OF METEORIC TRAILS,

Descriptive Note:

Corporate Author:

RAND CORP SANTA MONICA CALIF

Personal Author(s):

Report Date:

1954-11-22

Pagination or Media Count:

24.0

Abstract:

Application of the theory of diffusion to the phenomenon of meteoric trails enables the derivation from astronomical observations of a convenient method for determining the coefficient of diffusion at great altitudes where direct determinations are impossible or unfeasible. Analysis of the numerical magnitude of the coefficient of diffusion confirms the hypothesis of the turbulent nature of diffusion, and also the hypothesis that the coefficient of diffusion is a measure of the vertical mixing of the atmosphere. This mixing is inherent in the atmosphere as such, and is not introduced from outside by a meteoric body this follows not only from the smallness of the corresponding Reynolds number, but also from the duration of the process of mixing, which does not decline noticeably even after an interval of the order of one hour after the passage of the meteor. In addition to its acknowledged significance in determining the direction and speed of stratospheric currents, observation of meteoric trails is acquiring new geophysical significance as a means of studying vertical mixing. New light is also being shed on the problem of the conditions under which enduring ionized trails of meteors appear. Author

Subject Categories:

Distribution Statement:

APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE