Skip to Main content Skip to Navigation
New interface
Journal articles

Distribution of the O2 infrared nightglow observed with VIRTIS on board Venus Express

Abstract : We present characteristics of the statistical horizontal distribution of the O2 infrared nightglow over most of the southern hemisphere observed with the VIRTIS instrument over a period spanning nearly 11 months of low solar activity. We show that the distribution is inhomogeneous with the regions of brightest emission reaching ~3 MegaRayleighs (MR) located at low latitude near and dawnward of the midnight meridian. The hemispherically averaged nadir brightness is 1.3 MR, in very good agreement with earlier ground based observations. We show that the dayside supply of O atoms is sufficient to produce the observed global O2 nightglow if approximately 50% of the dayside O production is carried to the nightside by the subsolar to antisolar global circulation. Limb profiles observed at northern mid-latitudes exhibit large intensity variations over short time periods. Calculations with a one-dimensional chemical diffusive model produce an airglow peak at 96 km, in agreement with the limb observations. The atomic oxygen density derived from the best fits to O2 airglow limb profiles reaches a maximum of 1.8-3.5 × 1011 cm-3 at 104 km.
Document type :
Journal articles
Complete list of metadata
Contributor : Florence Henry Connect in order to contact the contributor
Submitted on : Thursday, September 29, 2022 - 5:01:35 PM
Last modification on : Thursday, September 29, 2022 - 5:01:36 PM


Publisher files allowed on an open archive





Jean-Claude Gérard, Adem Saglam, Giuseppe Piccioni, Pierre Drossart, Cedric Cox, et al.. Distribution of the O2 infrared nightglow observed with VIRTIS on board Venus Express. Geophysical Research Letters, 2008, 35, pp.02207. ⟨10.1029/2007GL032021⟩. ⟨hal-03784913⟩



Record views


Files downloads