On the global occurrence and impacts of transient luminous events (TLEs)

Rue Ron Hsu, Alfred B. Chen, Cheng Ling Kuo, Han Tzong Su, Harald Frey, Stephen Mende, Yukihiro Takahashi, Lou Chung Lee

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

13 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Based on the first four years of the ISUAL (Imager of Sprites and Upper Atmospheric Lightning) experiment onboard the FORMOSA!-2 sateUite, ELVEs are found to be the most abundant type (-80%) of TLEs (transient luminous events), whereas sprites and halos only combine to account for -20%. The distribution of sprites and halos closely resemble that of the cloud-to-ground lightning. However, nearly 60% of ELVEs occurred over the ocean, a feature indicating that the high peak current lightning is more abundant over the ocean. The global TLE occurrence rates are inferred to be 72, 3.7, and -1 events/minute, respectively, for ELVEs, halos, and sprites. Comparing with the results from the first three years of the ISUAL experiment reported by Chen et al. [1], the global occurrence rates for ELVEs and halos are higher due to the adoption of different correction factors. Using these updated TLE rates, the free electron content over an ELVE hot zone is estimated to be elevated by more than 10%. From analyzing ISUAL TLE events without lightning emission contamination, the average deposited energy in the upper atmosphere by sprites, halos, and ELVEs was found to be 22, 14, and 19 MJ per event, respectively. After factoring in the occurrence rates, in each minute sprites, halos, and ELVEs deliver 22, 52, and 1370 MJs of troposphere energy to the upper atmosphere, which are also higher than those reported in Kuo et al. [2]. However, the global occurrence and energy rates for ELVEs are likely the lower-bound values. A past observation [3] and our ensuing analyses both indicate that the ELVES occurrence rate and, thus, their energy deposition rate in the upper atmosphere should be higher.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationCoupling of Thunderstorms and Lightning Discharges to Near-Earth Space - Proceedings of the Workshop
Pages99-107
Number of pages9
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2009 Jul 20
EventWorkshop on Coupling of Thunderstorms and Lightning Discharges to Near-Earth Space - Corte, France
Duration: 2008 Jun 232008 Jun 26

Publication series

NameAIP Conference Proceedings
Volume1118
ISSN (Print)0094-243X
ISSN (Electronic)1551-7616

Other

OtherWorkshop on Coupling of Thunderstorms and Lightning Discharges to Near-Earth Space
CountryFrance
CityCorte
Period08-06-2308-06-26

Fingerprint

lightning
occurrences
halos
upper atmosphere
oceans
energy
troposphere
free electrons
contamination

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Physics and Astronomy(all)

Cite this

Hsu, R. R., Chen, A. B., Kuo, C. L., Su, H. T., Frey, H., Mende, S., ... Lee, L. C. (2009). On the global occurrence and impacts of transient luminous events (TLEs). In Coupling of Thunderstorms and Lightning Discharges to Near-Earth Space - Proceedings of the Workshop (pp. 99-107). (AIP Conference Proceedings; Vol. 1118). https://doi.org/10.1063/1.3137720
Hsu, Rue Ron ; Chen, Alfred B. ; Kuo, Cheng Ling ; Su, Han Tzong ; Frey, Harald ; Mende, Stephen ; Takahashi, Yukihiro ; Lee, Lou Chung. / On the global occurrence and impacts of transient luminous events (TLEs). Coupling of Thunderstorms and Lightning Discharges to Near-Earth Space - Proceedings of the Workshop. 2009. pp. 99-107 (AIP Conference Proceedings).
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abstract = "Based on the first four years of the ISUAL (Imager of Sprites and Upper Atmospheric Lightning) experiment onboard the FORMOSA!-2 sateUite, ELVEs are found to be the most abundant type (-80{\%}) of TLEs (transient luminous events), whereas sprites and halos only combine to account for -20{\%}. The distribution of sprites and halos closely resemble that of the cloud-to-ground lightning. However, nearly 60{\%} of ELVEs occurred over the ocean, a feature indicating that the high peak current lightning is more abundant over the ocean. The global TLE occurrence rates are inferred to be 72, 3.7, and -1 events/minute, respectively, for ELVEs, halos, and sprites. Comparing with the results from the first three years of the ISUAL experiment reported by Chen et al. [1], the global occurrence rates for ELVEs and halos are higher due to the adoption of different correction factors. Using these updated TLE rates, the free electron content over an ELVE hot zone is estimated to be elevated by more than 10{\%}. From analyzing ISUAL TLE events without lightning emission contamination, the average deposited energy in the upper atmosphere by sprites, halos, and ELVEs was found to be 22, 14, and 19 MJ per event, respectively. After factoring in the occurrence rates, in each minute sprites, halos, and ELVEs deliver 22, 52, and 1370 MJs of troposphere energy to the upper atmosphere, which are also higher than those reported in Kuo et al. [2]. However, the global occurrence and energy rates for ELVEs are likely the lower-bound values. A past observation [3] and our ensuing analyses both indicate that the ELVES occurrence rate and, thus, their energy deposition rate in the upper atmosphere should be higher.",
author = "Hsu, {Rue Ron} and Chen, {Alfred B.} and Kuo, {Cheng Ling} and Su, {Han Tzong} and Harald Frey and Stephen Mende and Yukihiro Takahashi and Lee, {Lou Chung}",
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Hsu, RR, Chen, AB, Kuo, CL, Su, HT, Frey, H, Mende, S, Takahashi, Y & Lee, LC 2009, On the global occurrence and impacts of transient luminous events (TLEs). in Coupling of Thunderstorms and Lightning Discharges to Near-Earth Space - Proceedings of the Workshop. AIP Conference Proceedings, vol. 1118, pp. 99-107, Workshop on Coupling of Thunderstorms and Lightning Discharges to Near-Earth Space, Corte, France, 08-06-23. https://doi.org/10.1063/1.3137720

On the global occurrence and impacts of transient luminous events (TLEs). / Hsu, Rue Ron; Chen, Alfred B.; Kuo, Cheng Ling; Su, Han Tzong; Frey, Harald; Mende, Stephen; Takahashi, Yukihiro; Lee, Lou Chung.

Coupling of Thunderstorms and Lightning Discharges to Near-Earth Space - Proceedings of the Workshop. 2009. p. 99-107 (AIP Conference Proceedings; Vol. 1118).

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

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AU - Mende, Stephen

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N2 - Based on the first four years of the ISUAL (Imager of Sprites and Upper Atmospheric Lightning) experiment onboard the FORMOSA!-2 sateUite, ELVEs are found to be the most abundant type (-80%) of TLEs (transient luminous events), whereas sprites and halos only combine to account for -20%. The distribution of sprites and halos closely resemble that of the cloud-to-ground lightning. However, nearly 60% of ELVEs occurred over the ocean, a feature indicating that the high peak current lightning is more abundant over the ocean. The global TLE occurrence rates are inferred to be 72, 3.7, and -1 events/minute, respectively, for ELVEs, halos, and sprites. Comparing with the results from the first three years of the ISUAL experiment reported by Chen et al. [1], the global occurrence rates for ELVEs and halos are higher due to the adoption of different correction factors. Using these updated TLE rates, the free electron content over an ELVE hot zone is estimated to be elevated by more than 10%. From analyzing ISUAL TLE events without lightning emission contamination, the average deposited energy in the upper atmosphere by sprites, halos, and ELVEs was found to be 22, 14, and 19 MJ per event, respectively. After factoring in the occurrence rates, in each minute sprites, halos, and ELVEs deliver 22, 52, and 1370 MJs of troposphere energy to the upper atmosphere, which are also higher than those reported in Kuo et al. [2]. However, the global occurrence and energy rates for ELVEs are likely the lower-bound values. A past observation [3] and our ensuing analyses both indicate that the ELVES occurrence rate and, thus, their energy deposition rate in the upper atmosphere should be higher.

AB - Based on the first four years of the ISUAL (Imager of Sprites and Upper Atmospheric Lightning) experiment onboard the FORMOSA!-2 sateUite, ELVEs are found to be the most abundant type (-80%) of TLEs (transient luminous events), whereas sprites and halos only combine to account for -20%. The distribution of sprites and halos closely resemble that of the cloud-to-ground lightning. However, nearly 60% of ELVEs occurred over the ocean, a feature indicating that the high peak current lightning is more abundant over the ocean. The global TLE occurrence rates are inferred to be 72, 3.7, and -1 events/minute, respectively, for ELVEs, halos, and sprites. Comparing with the results from the first three years of the ISUAL experiment reported by Chen et al. [1], the global occurrence rates for ELVEs and halos are higher due to the adoption of different correction factors. Using these updated TLE rates, the free electron content over an ELVE hot zone is estimated to be elevated by more than 10%. From analyzing ISUAL TLE events without lightning emission contamination, the average deposited energy in the upper atmosphere by sprites, halos, and ELVEs was found to be 22, 14, and 19 MJ per event, respectively. After factoring in the occurrence rates, in each minute sprites, halos, and ELVEs deliver 22, 52, and 1370 MJs of troposphere energy to the upper atmosphere, which are also higher than those reported in Kuo et al. [2]. However, the global occurrence and energy rates for ELVEs are likely the lower-bound values. A past observation [3] and our ensuing analyses both indicate that the ELVES occurrence rate and, thus, their energy deposition rate in the upper atmosphere should be higher.

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Hsu RR, Chen AB, Kuo CL, Su HT, Frey H, Mende S et al. On the global occurrence and impacts of transient luminous events (TLEs). In Coupling of Thunderstorms and Lightning Discharges to Near-Earth Space - Proceedings of the Workshop. 2009. p. 99-107. (AIP Conference Proceedings). https://doi.org/10.1063/1.3137720