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Physical Sciences: Detection of Water Cluster Ions at the High Latitude Summer Mesopause


A SOUNDING rocket was launched recently from the Andöya range (69° 17′ N), chiefly to study the ion composition around the cold summer mesopause, and its relation to ambient temperature, ionization production and ionization loss rates. The most striking result was the large size of the water cluster ions detected and the extremely rapid change in the ion composition around 85 km. The rocket, a Nike Cajun launched on August 8, 1971, at 1211 GMT, reached an altitude of 98.6 km and carried the following experiments.

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    Narcisi, R. S., and Bailey, A. D., J. Geophys. Res., 70, 3687 (1965).

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    Arnold, F., Kissel, J., Krankowsky, D., Wieder, H., and Zähringer, J., J. Atmosph. Terr. Phys., 33, 1169 (1971).

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    Folkestad, K., NDRE Report No. 59 (Norwegian Defence Research Establishment, Kjeller, 1970).

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