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Article
Nature 347, 31 - 36 (06 September 1990); doi:10.1038/347031a0

Ozone loss in the Arctic polar vortex inferred from high-altitude aircraft measurements

M. H. Proffitt*, J. J. Margitan, K. K. Kelly, M. Loewenstein§, J. R. Podolske§ & K. R. Chan§

*NOAA Aeronomy Lab, 325 Broadway, Boulder, Colorado 80303 and CIRES, University of Colorado, Boulder, Colorado 80309, USA
Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, California 91109, USA
NOAA Aeronomy Lab, 325 Broadway, Boulder, Colorado 80303, USA
§NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, California 94035, USA

The Arctic polar vortex in winter is known to be chemically primed for ozone depletion, yet it does not exhibit the large seasonal ozone decrease that characterizes its southern counterpart. This difference may be due in part to a net flux of ozone-rich air through the Arctic vortex, which can mask ozone loss. But by using a chemically con-served tracer as a reference, significant ozone loss can be identified. This loss is found to be correlated with high levels of chlorine monoxide, suggesting that much of the decrease in ozone is caused by anthropogenic emissions of chlorofluorocarbons.

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