Part 1: Six weeks as a summer student at IMAS

Jesse Greenslade is a summer student who will be spending six weeks at IMAS at our UTAS  hub where he will look at troposphere ozone intrusions. Jesse will be blogging on his work for the next six weeks. You can read Part 2 here.

I arrived in Hobart on the January to begin my 6 week research project on stratosphere to troposphere ozone intrusions . Initially, I didn't have much idea what was going on and when I found the house I had arranged to stay at (through Gumtree) I discovered a distinct lack of internet access.

 


The location of the IMAS building where I will work.

On Tuesday, January 6, I began the actual work on an AAD computer at the IMAS ( aka I Move And Squeak) building. My supervisor had prepared some background reading and gave me access to some of the data I would need to analyse.

AAD stands for Australian Antarctic Division but in my opinion the acronym really means Admin Access Denied, with additional blocks put in place for ssh connections and dropbox. If you are someone who works with IDL and python then you might be familiar with how useful self created libraries can be. Sadly, mine are conveniently located on the University of Wollongong’s servers, inaccessible without ssh.

The troposphere extends from the planet’s surface up to around 10km, where the tropopause and then the stratosphere begin. Air in the stratosphere is dryer and ozone rich, which is good for us as ozone up there protects us from harmful UV radiation. Occasionally pockets of stratospheric air come down into the troposphere, increasing ozone concentration which can be quite hazardous to our health.  The purpose of my project is to examine what could cause these events. I’m using ozonesondes ($1000 weather balloons) data from Davis, Macquarie, and Melbourne to determine when events are happening and then looking at the local weather at those times to get a general idea of event meteorology.

 

For now here’s a sneak preview of an ozone intrusion event over camp Davis.

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