Atmosphere-ionosphere and near-space Studies

Earth’s atmosphere and near space research group

Members of the group: Associate professor of Ilia State University Goderdzi Didebulidze (Head), Assistant-professor Maya Todua, Researcher Nikoloz Gudadze, Researcher Dr. Levan Lomidze, Lexo Toriashvili, Giorgi Matiashvili. Engineers and observers: Victor Mayer, Valentina Ambartsymian, Sergi Danik

Project Referencees

The group is involved in theoretical and experimental research of the Earht’s lower and upper atmosphere-ionosphere, their structural and dynamical variations in different helio-geophysical conditions, search for and monitoring the signals produced by climate change.

Experimental/observational work is mainly made in the Upper Atmosphere Research Laboratory which include:

  • Monitoring of the stratospheric aerosol vertical distribution close to real-time by lidar method. The observations are carried out by the Lidar M-10 system which is the first such instument used in the Caucasus region. It was made in the University of Michigan (USA) by ISTC grant. The observations started in 2007.
  • Monitoring of the ozon total content.
  • Monitoring of dynamic processes in the mesopause region by the All-sky Imager. The instruments was purchased under the Shota Rustaveli National Science Foundation grant and was installed in colaboration with the reserachers of the Utah University (USA). The observations started in September 2014 which are first such measurements in the Caucasus region.
  • Mesopause temperature measurements by the spectrometer GRIPS 5. It was made and installed in Abastumani by German Space Center (DLR) in October 2012.
  • Photometric measurements of the atomic oxigen red 630 nm and green 557.7 nm lines of the nightglow spectrum. Observations are carried out since 1957.

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International collaboration. The group is a member of  NDMC  (The Network for the Detection Mesosphere Changes – http://andromeda.caf.dlr.de/ndmc) and  programs SCOSTEP/VarSITI (Scientific Committee on Solar-Terrestrial Physics/Variability of the Sun and Its Terrestrial Impact -http://www.stelab.nagoya-u.ac.jp/varsiti/index_e.html).

Grants:  Shota Rustaveli National Science Foundation grants No 13/09 and No 31/81,  FP7-INFRASTRUCTRES-2010-1 N° 262254.

Education. The group supervises the Masrer of Sciences and PhD programs in Atmosphere-ionosphere  and near space physics, at the Department of Natural Sciences and Engineering of Ilia State University, as well as organizes the trainings of young scientists in the leading international research centers in this research field.

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Ground-based and spaceborne monitoring of stratospheric aerosol

Participants:  N. Mateshvili (Head of the Project), I. Mateshvili, T. Paatashvili.

The present subproject is aimed at study of the stratospheric sulphate aerosol. Both ground-based measurements and those performed from spacecrafts will be utilized for this purpose. The first are the twilight sky brightness measurements which are performed in Abastumani and Tbilisi for a long time and will be continued in the future. The second are basically those performed with the aid of GOMOS, the spectrometer onboard ENVISAT.

The aerosol retrieval algorithm for the twilight measurements will be improved.

Basing on the results of the both types of measurements, a database of stratospheric aerosol loading will be created.

It is crucial to take into account the stratospheric aerosol loading for correct calculation of radiation balance in climate models.

The obtained results will also be used in modeling of the daytime atmospheric limb brightness. The last will be done as a part of preparatory work for limb brightnesses modeling as they will be measured by the equipment onboard ALTIUS, a satellite which is being developed in Belgian Institute for Space Aeronomy.

The given project will be performed in cooperation with Belgian Institute for Space Aeronomy.

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