NO emissions as observed by SPICAV during stellar occultations

Emilie Royer 1 Franck Montmessin 1 Jean-Loup Bertaux 1
LATMOS - Laboratoire Atmosphères, Milieux, Observations Spatiales
Abstract : Ultraviolet (UV) nightglow data from the SPICAV instrument (SPectroscopy for the Investigation of the Characteristics of the Atmosphere of Venus) onboard the Venus Express spacecraft, currently in orbit around Venus, are presented. In its extended source mode, SPICAV has shown that the Venus nightglow in the UV contains essentially Lyman-αand Nitric Oxide (NO) emissions. In the stellar mode, when the slit of the spectrometer is removed, an emission is also observed at the limb in addition to the stellar spectrum. A forward model allows us to identify this feature as being an NO emission. Due to radiative recombination of N and O atoms produced on the dayside of Venus, and transported to the nightside, NO nightglow provides important constraints to the Solar-to-Anti Solar thermospheric circulation prevailing above 90 km. The forward model presented here allows us to derive the altitude of the peak of emission of the NO layer, found at 113.5 ±6 km, as well as its scale height, of 3.4 ±1 km and its brightness. The latter is found to be very variable with emissions between 19 Kilo-Rayleigh (kR) and 540 kR. In addition, the NO nightglow is sometimes very patchy, as we are able to observe two distinct emission zones in the field of view. Finally, systematic extraction of this emission from stellar occultations extends the database of the NO emission already reported elsewhere using limb observations.
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Soumis le : samedi 5 juin 2010 - 10:16:57
Dernière modification le : lundi 17 décembre 2018 - 01:35:37




Emilie Royer, Franck Montmessin, Jean-Loup Bertaux. NO emissions as observed by SPICAV during stellar occultations. Planetary and Space Science, Elsevier, 2010, 58 (10), pp.1314-1326. 〈10.1016/j.pss.2010.05.015〉. 〈hal-00489497〉



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