Global artist at work
Impressing structures can be observed these days when looking at the global stratospheric ozone distribution.
Wave like structures, filaments and even filigree patterns are revealed from satellite based data of the stratospheric ozone distribution which are highly variable in space and time. Patterns of the global ozone distributions even remind of fine artwork.
The reason for this behaviour is an extraordinary dynamic activity at stratospheric heights which is known in atmospheric sciences as a stratospheric warming or, sometimes labelled as “stratwarm”. During such episodes the activity of large sacle waves in the atmosphere strengthens within only a few days or weeks. These so-called pronounced “planetary waves” then cause the global stratospheric circulation to strongly weaken or even to reverse from winter to summer conditions. Since ozone has a relatively long lifetime it can be used as a tracer for atmospheric