Press Release

International Science Team to Examine Arctic Ozone

By SpaceRef Editor
November 18, 1999
Filed under

John Bluck

NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, CA

(Phone: 650/604-5026 or 604-9000)

E-mail: [email protected]

RELEASE: 99-76AR

INTERNATIONAL SCIENCE TEAM TO EXAMINE ARCTIC OZONE

NASA scientists are joining researchers from Europe, Russia, Canada
and Japan to mount the largest field-measurement campaign ever to assess
ozone amounts and changes in the Arctic upper atmosphere this winter.

This collaborative campaign will measure ozone and other atmospheric
gases using satellites, airplanes, heavy-lift and small balloons, and
ground-based instruments. From November 1999 through March 2000,
researchers will examine the processes that control ozone amounts during
the Arctic winter at mid to high latitudes.

“The combined campaign will provide an immense new body of information
about the Arctic stratosphere,” said program scientist Dr. Michael Kurylo,
NASA Headquarters, Washington, DC. “Our understanding of the Earth’s ozone
will be greatly enhanced by this research.”

The Earth’s ozone layer protects life below from the harmful
ultraviolet radiation coming from the Sun. This radiation can damage DNA
molecules, thereby leading to the formation of skin cancers. Very low
levels of ozone were observed over the Arctic in several winters during the
1990s, raising concerns that an Arctic ozone hole might be forming. Recent
modeling work has suggested that greenhouse gas warming might lead to
larger-than-expected Arctic ozone losses in the future and also may delay
the expected recovery of the ozone layer globally.

For the first time, measurements of stratospheric composition over the
Arctic will be made using a large suite of instruments aboard several
European aircraft, as well as on NASA’s DC-8 and ER-2, based at NASA’s
Dryden Flight Research Center, Edwards, CA. Balloons, carrying payloads
ranging from several pounds to several thousand pounds and ground-based
instruments will also take atmospheric readings.

“Handling all the hardware and coordinating the personnel, aircraft,
balloons, and ground observations involved in the campaign is an immense
challenge,” said project manager Michael Craig of NASA’s Ames Research
Center, Moffett Field, CA. More than 350 scientists, technicians and
support workers are involved in the experiment.

More than 15 years ago, scientists detected an “Ozone Hole” over the
South Pole that has reappeared each year during the Southern Hemisphere
winter and spring. Researchers from around the world recognized more than a
decade ago that the ozone depletion is caused primarily by man-made
chlorine and bromine compounds. The chlorine compounds have been produced
for use as refrigerants, aerosol sprays, solvents and foam blowing agents,
while bromine-containing halons have been used in fire extinguishing.
Man-made production of chlorofluorocarbons ceased in 1996 in developed
countries under the terms of the Montreal Protocol and its Amendments.

Scientists also will take measurements that will be useful in
validating data from an instrument called SAGE III aboard the Russian
Meteor-3 satellite. Once the spacecraft is launched, SAGE III will measure
the vertical structure of aerosols, ozone, water vapor and other trace
gases in the Arctic upper troposphere and stratosphere. NASA’s Langley
Research Center, Hampton, VA, manages the SAGE III project.

Project scientists will be based above the Arctic Circle at the
airport in Kiruna, Sweden. “Arena Arctica,” a large hangar especially
built for research, will house the aircraft and many of the scientific
instruments. Balloons will be launched from Esrange, a balloon and rocket
launch facility near Kiruna. Wintertime conditions can be very severe,
with temperatures falling below 50 degrees below zero Fahrenheit.

The NASA-sponsored SAGE III Ozone Loss and Validation Experiment
(SOLVE) is being conducted jointly with the European Commission-sponsored
Third European Stratospheric Experiment on Ozone (THESEO 2000). More
information (including a list of participating institutions) can be found
at:

Journalists will be invited to the main field staging area in Kiruna,
Sweden, for a “media day” in late January 2000, when most of the science
teams will be on hand. A newsroom will be established near the airport
during this peak period, and journalists will be escorted into the research
area to meet with operational and scientific personnel.
-end-
To receive Ames press releases via email, send an email with the word
“subscribe” in subject line to: [email protected]
To unsubscribe, send an email to: [email protected]
with “unsubscribe” in subject line. Also, the NASA Ames Public Affairs
Home Page at URL, http://ccf.arc.nasa.gov/dx includes press releases and
JPEG images in AP Leaf Desk format minus embedded captions.

—————

SATELLITE FEED INFO FOR THIS STORY–

Video File for Nov. 18, 1999

11:00 am

ITEM 1 – POSSIBLE NEW LEONIDS IMAGES FROM JERUSALEM
(shot Nov. 17) – AMES

ITEM 2 – HIGH-ALTITUDE BALLOON VIDEO OF LEONIDS
(shot Nov. 17) – MSFC

ITEM 3 – LEONIDS 1999 IMAGES FROM NOV. 17 (replay)/AMES

ITEM 4 – LEONIDS 1998 PLUS 1999 INTERVIEWS FROM NOV. 16
AMES/MSFC (replay)

ITEM 5 – SOLVE VIDEO FILE – ARC, LARC, DFRC

ITEM 6 – MARS MISSIONS CLIP REEL (file footage)

LIVE TELEVISION EVENTS THIS WEEK:

November 19, Friday

1:00 – 2:00 pm – Space Science Update on Results from First
Galileo Flyby of Jovian Moon, Io – HQ

*****************************

ITEM 1 – POSSIBLE NEW LEONIDS IMAGES FROM JERUSALEM
(shot Nov. 17) – AMES

ITEM 2 – HIGH-ALTITUDE BALLOON VIDEO OF LEONIDS
(shot Nov. 17) – MSFC

ITEM 3 – LEONIDS 1999 IMAGES FROM NOV. 17 (replay)/AMES

Contact at NASA Headquarters, Washington, DC: Donald Savage
(Phone 202/358-1547).
Contact at NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, CA: Kathleen
Burton (Phone 650/604-1731).

ITEM 3a – 1999 LEONID B-ROLL——————————-TRT :42

Meteor streaks from the ARIA aircraft during the first night of
the 1999 Leonid Airborne Campaign.

ITEM 3b – INTERVIEW EXCERPTS——————————TRT 1:20

Jane Houston, U.S. Astronomer, Leonid Meteor Count Team

ITEM 4 – LEONIDS 1998 PLUS 1999 INTERVIEWS FROM NOV. 16
AMES/MSFC (replay)

ITEM 5 – SOLVE VIDEO FILE – ARC, LARC, DFRC

NASA scientists are joining researchers from Europe, Russia,
Canada and Japan to mount the largest field-measurement campaign
ever to assess ozone amounts and changes in the Arctic upper
atmosphere this winter. This collaborative campaign will measure
ozone and other atmospheric gases using satellites, airplanes,
heavy-lift and small balloons, and ground-based instruments. From
November 1999 through March 2000, researchers will examine the
processes that control ozone amounts during the Arctic winter at
mid to high latitudes.

Contact at NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, CA: John
Bluck (Phone 650/604-5026).
Contact at NASA Headquarters, Washington, DC: David E. Steitz
(Phone 202/358-1730).

More information (including a list of participating
institutions) can be found at:
http://cloud1.arc.nasa.gov/solve/index.html
and
http://www.ozone-sec.ch.cam.ac.uk

ITEM 6 – MARS MISSIONS CLIP REEL (file footage)–approx. TRT 35:00

Mars missions resource reel (file footage) features various
missions, images from Hubble Space Telescope, 3-D mapping, etc.

*****************************

TV Producers:

Please note all times, unless otherwise noted, are Eastern Time.

This heads-up announces our most current line-up of stories on
NASA’s daily Video File feed. As we try to provide you the best,
most current service possible, THE LINE-UP MAY CHANGE THROUGHOUT
THE DAY.

Any CHANGES TO THE LINE-UP WILL APPEAR ON THE NASA VIDEO FILE
ADVISORY on the web at
ftp://ftp.hq.nasa.gov/pub/pao/tv-advisory/nasa-tv.txt
WE UPDATE THE ADVISORY THROUGHOUT THE DAY.

The NASA Video File normally airs at noon, 3:00 p.m., 6:00 p.m.,
9:00 p.m. and midnight Eastern Time. NASA Television is available
on GE-2, transponder 9C at 85 degrees West longitude, with
vertical polarization. Frequency is on 3880.0 megahertz, with
audio on 6.8 megahertz.

For general questions about the video file call NASA Headquarters,
Washington, DC: Ray Castillo 202/358-4555 or Elvia Thompson
202/358-1696.

*****************************

– end –

SpaceRef staff editor.