Observations of stratosphere-troposphere coupling during major solar eclipses from FORMOSAT-3/COSMIC constellation

Kuo Ying Wang, Chao Han Liu, Lou Chuang Lee, Peter Braesicke

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Sudden tropospheric cooling and induced stratospheric warming were found during the 22 July 2009 total solar eclipse. Can the 22 July 2009 hallmark also be seen in other major solar eclipses? Here we hypothesize that the tropospheric cooling and the stratospheric warming can be predicted to occur during a major solar eclipse event. In this work we use the FORMOSAT-3/COSMIC (F3C) Global Positioning System (GPS) radio occultation (RO) data to construct eclipse-time temperature profiles before, during, and after the passages of major solar eclipses for the years 2006-2010. We use four times a day of meteorological analysis from the European Centre for Medium Range Weather Forecast (ECMWF) global meteorological analysis to construct non-eclipse effect temperature profiles for the same eclipse passages. The eclipse effects were calculated based on the difference between F3C and ECMWF profiles. A total of five eclipse cases and thirteen non-eclipse cases were analyzed and compared. We found that eclipses cause direct thermal cooling in the troposphere and indirect dynamic warming in the stratosphere. These results are statistically significant. Our results show -0.6 to -1.2°C cooling in the troposphere and 0.4 to 1.3°C warming in the middle to lower stratosphere during the eclipses. This characteristic stratosphere-troposphere coupling in temperature profiles represent a distinctive atmospheric responses to the solar eclipses.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)261-282
Number of pages22
JournalSpace Science Reviews
Issue number1-4
StatePublished - Jun 2012


  • Solar eclipse
  • Stratosphere-troposphere coupling


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