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Latest Polar vortex Stories

2011-04-08 11:54:47

New analysis of images taken by ESA's Venus Express orbiter has revealed surprising details about the remarkable, shape-shifting collar of clouds that swirls around the planet's South Pole. This fast-moving feature is all the more surprising since its center of rotation is typically offset from the geographical pole. The results of this study are published online in Science Express today. Several planets in the Solar System, including Earth, have been found to possess hurricane-like polar...

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2011-04-04 20:59:50

ESA's Envisat satellite has measured record low levels of ozone over the Euro-Atlantic sector of the northern hemisphere during March. This record low was caused by unusually strong winds, known as the polar vortex, which isolated the atmospheric mass over the North Pole and prevented it from mixing with air in the mid-latitudes.This led to very low temperatures and created conditions similar to those that occur every southern hemisphere winter over the Antarctic.  As March sunlight...

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2010-07-23 09:07:35

KIT Scientists Disprove Doubts in Ozone Hole Chemistry For the first time, KIT scientists have successfully measured in the ozone layer the chlorine compound ClOOCl which plays an important role in stratospheric ozone depletion. The doubts in the established models of polar ozone chemistry expressed by American researchers based on laboratory measurements are disproved by these new atmospheric observations. The established role played by chlorine compounds in atmospheric ozone chemistry is in...

2010-05-25 07:40:00

The eruption of the volcano in Iceland has drawn attention to air flow patterns, as airlines lost millions of dollars and travelers remained stranded for days to weeks, as particles from the natural disaster traveled over Europe, forcing closures of major airports. The flow of particles, although seemingly random, can be characterized more effectively, according to work done by Virginia Tech's Shane Ross of the engineering science and mechanics (ESM) department and his colleague Francois...

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2008-10-07 11:39:33

The 2008 ozone hole "“ a thinning in the ozone layer over Antarctica "“ is larger both in size and ozone loss than 2007 but is not as large as 2006. Ozone is a protective atmospheric layer found in about 25 kilometers altitude that acts as a sunlight filter shielding life on Earth from harmful ultraviolet rays, which can increase the risk of skin cancer and cataracts and harm marine life. This year the area of the thinned ozone layer over the South Pole reached about 27 million...

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2007-10-03 10:40:00

The ozone hole over Antarctica has shrunk 30 percent as compared to last year's record size. According to measurements made by ESA's Envisat satellite, this year's ozone loss peaked at 27.7 million tonnes, compared to the 2006 record ozone loss of 40 million tonnes. Ozone loss is derived by measuring the area and the depth of the ozone hole. The area of this year's ozone hole "“ where the ozone measures less than 220 Dobson Units "“ is 24.7 million sq km, roughly the size of North...

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2007-05-07 09:25:00

An exciting new series of videos from ESA's Venus Express has been capturing atmospheric details of day and night areas simultaneously, at different altitudes. The south pole of the planet and its gigantic double vortex has been pictured as never before. The south pole of Venus and the double-eyed storm permanently rule atmospheric phenomena in that area of the planet. They are key to understanding the global atmospheric dynamics on Venus and will contribute to a better comprehension of the...

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2006-11-24 09:45:00

Cassini's spectacular image of Saturn's polar vortex, published this month by NASA, may provide astronomers with a missing piece in the puzzle of how that planet's atmosphere works. For planetary scientists studying Venus, the image was strangely familiar. Ever since the late 1970s, scientists have known of a similar polar vortex on Earth's nearest neighbour. For six months now, ESA's Venus Express has been studying this enigmatic atmospheric structure.  NASA's Pioneer Venus spacecraft...

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2006-10-02 17:25:00

Ozone measurements made by ESA's Envisat satellite have revealed the ozone loss of 40 million tonnes on 2 October 2006 has exceeded the record ozone loss of about 39 million tonnes for 2000. Ozone loss is derived by measuring the area and the depth of the ozone hole. The size of this year's ozone hole is 28 million square km, nearly as large as the record ozone hole extension during 2000, and the depth of the ozone hole is around 100 Dobson Units, rivalling the record low ozone values in...

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2005-08-30 14:30:42

ESA -- This season's Antarctic ozone hole has swollen to an area of ten million square kilometres from mid-August - approximately the same size as Europe and still expanding. It is expected to reach maximum extent during September, and ESA satellites are vital for monitoring its development. This year's hole is large for this time of year, based on results from the last decade: only the ozone holes of 1996 and 2000 had a larger area at this point in their development. Envisat's Scanning...


Word of the Day
malpais
  • The ragged surface of a lava-flow.
'Malpais' translates from Spanish as 'bad land.'