Dissipation of gravity waves (GWs) and resultant momentum flux deposition and eddy diffusion significantly influence the atmospheric structure and circulation. Using the temperature profiles measured by the SABER instrument (2002–2021), we derive the global GW action and its scale height (HAm). Comparing to the background scale height (H), we identify a persistent layer of enhanced GW dissipation (HAm/H > 2) in the upper mesosphere. The enhanced dissipation is primarily centered at 80–85 km with a vertical range of ∼8–20 km. At middle and high latitudes, the enhanced dissipation extends down to ∼60 km and is located above the eastward (westward) wind peak in winter (summer). At low latitudes, enhanced dissipation occurs around the wind reversals. The possible mechanisms of enhanced dissipation include wave refraction, wind filtering, and reduced static stability. The persistent layer of enhanced dissipation identified here provide observational evidence for GW dissipation constrains in models.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)