Abstract

The Novaya Zemlya effect, historically identified with the premature rebirth of the sun during the polar night, is a long range optical ducting phenomenon in the lower atmosphere. An occurrence of the effect was observed at Tuktoyaktuk, Canada (69°26N, 133°02W) on 16 May 1979, when the minimum solar altitude was −1°34. The sun's image remained above the horizon, within a gray horizontal band, and assumed the various expected shapes, ranging from a bright rectangle filling the band, to three flat suns stacked one over the other, to several thin vertically separated strips. A model for the corresponding atmospheric conditions was identified by matching the observations with images calculated from a computer simulation study.

© 1981 Optical Society of America

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References

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  1. G. de Veer, The Three Voyages of William Barents to the Arctic Regions (1594, 1595, and 1596) (Hakluyt Society, London, 1876).
  2. E. Shackleton, South—The Story of Shackleton's Last Expedition 1914–1917 (Macmillan, New York, 1920).
  3. G. H. Liljequist, “Refraction Phenomena in the Polar Atmosphere,” in Scientific Results, Norwegian-British-Swedish Antarctic Expedition, 1949-52 (Oslo U.P., Oslo, 1964), Vol. 2, Part 2.
  4. A. Wegener, Ann. Phys. Leipzig 57, 203 (1918).
    [CrossRef]
  5. S. W. Visser, K. Ned, Akad. Wet. Ser. B 59, 375 (1956).
  6. W. H. Lehn, J. Opt. Soc. Am. 69, 776 (1979).
    [CrossRef]
  7. The single word thermocline best summarizes the nature of the relevant temperature inversions; this usage comes from Liljequist, Ref. 3.
  8. A photograph of a terrestrial subject, made on the same night, appears in W. H. Lehn, J. Atmos. Terr. Phys. 42, 471 (1980).
    [CrossRef]
  9. The calculation of duct elevation angles, estimated to be accurate to ±1 min of arc, is based on measurements made on the original photographs.

1980 (1)

A photograph of a terrestrial subject, made on the same night, appears in W. H. Lehn, J. Atmos. Terr. Phys. 42, 471 (1980).
[CrossRef]

1979 (1)

1956 (1)

S. W. Visser, K. Ned, Akad. Wet. Ser. B 59, 375 (1956).

1918 (1)

A. Wegener, Ann. Phys. Leipzig 57, 203 (1918).
[CrossRef]

de Veer, G.

G. de Veer, The Three Voyages of William Barents to the Arctic Regions (1594, 1595, and 1596) (Hakluyt Society, London, 1876).

Lehn, W. H.

A photograph of a terrestrial subject, made on the same night, appears in W. H. Lehn, J. Atmos. Terr. Phys. 42, 471 (1980).
[CrossRef]

W. H. Lehn, J. Opt. Soc. Am. 69, 776 (1979).
[CrossRef]

Liljequist, G. H.

G. H. Liljequist, “Refraction Phenomena in the Polar Atmosphere,” in Scientific Results, Norwegian-British-Swedish Antarctic Expedition, 1949-52 (Oslo U.P., Oslo, 1964), Vol. 2, Part 2.

Ned, K.

S. W. Visser, K. Ned, Akad. Wet. Ser. B 59, 375 (1956).

Shackleton, E.

E. Shackleton, South—The Story of Shackleton's Last Expedition 1914–1917 (Macmillan, New York, 1920).

Visser, S. W.

S. W. Visser, K. Ned, Akad. Wet. Ser. B 59, 375 (1956).

Wegener, A.

A. Wegener, Ann. Phys. Leipzig 57, 203 (1918).
[CrossRef]

Akad. Wet. Ser. B (1)

S. W. Visser, K. Ned, Akad. Wet. Ser. B 59, 375 (1956).

Ann. Phys. Leipzig (1)

A. Wegener, Ann. Phys. Leipzig 57, 203 (1918).
[CrossRef]

J. Atmos. Terr. Phys. (1)

A photograph of a terrestrial subject, made on the same night, appears in W. H. Lehn, J. Atmos. Terr. Phys. 42, 471 (1980).
[CrossRef]

J. Opt. Soc. Am. (1)

Other (5)

The single word thermocline best summarizes the nature of the relevant temperature inversions; this usage comes from Liljequist, Ref. 3.

G. de Veer, The Three Voyages of William Barents to the Arctic Regions (1594, 1595, and 1596) (Hakluyt Society, London, 1876).

E. Shackleton, South—The Story of Shackleton's Last Expedition 1914–1917 (Macmillan, New York, 1920).

G. H. Liljequist, “Refraction Phenomena in the Polar Atmosphere,” in Scientific Results, Norwegian-British-Swedish Antarctic Expedition, 1949-52 (Oslo U.P., Oslo, 1964), Vol. 2, Part 2.

The calculation of duct elevation angles, estimated to be accurate to ±1 min of arc, is based on measurements made on the original photographs.

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Figures (9)

Fig. 1
Fig. 1

Geometry of the Novaya Zemlya model. A light ray, with direction of propagation reversed for computational convenience, emanates from the observer's eye with elevation angle ϕ0 After exiting from the duct, the ray undergoes the normal atmospheric refraction before escaping into space.

Fig. 2
Fig. 2

Temperature profiles at the observer's location. The solid line represents the Wegener model of Phases I and III, while the dashed line gives rise to the Phase II observations.

Fig. 3
Fig. 3

Phase I transfer characteristic. The angles are in min of arc hrelative to the observer's coordinate system. The observer sees the duct extending from 1 to 14 min of arc in elevation.

Fig. 4
Fig. 4

(a) Image of the sun at 1:34 a.m. MDT. The calculated position of the sun's center is h = − 35 min of arc. (b) Calculated appearance of the sun based on the Phase I transfer characteristic.

Fig. 5
Fig. 5

(a) Image of the sun at 1:41½ a.m.; h = −46.5 min of arc. (b) Calculated appearance.

Fig. 6
Fig. 6

(a) Image of the sun at 1:49 a.m.; h = −57 min of arc. (b) Calculated appearance.

Fig. 7
Fig. 7

Phase II transfer characteristic. The thermocline tilt is +8 min of arc in this case.

Fig. 8
Fig. 8

(a) Image of the sun at 2:06 a.m.; h = −75 min of arc. (b) Appearance calculated from Phase II transfer characteristic (Fig. 7) for h = −69 min of arc. This shape agrees fairly well with the photograph; however, to obtain correspondence of the elevation angles, the atmosphere beyond the duct is assumed to contribute the needed extra 6 min of arc.

Fig. 9
Fig. 9

Typical sun image observed during Phase III; 2:44 a.m., h = −94 min of arc, camera elevation = 2.5 m. This shape arises from a Wegener model with transfer characteristic like that of Fig. 3 (see text).

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