Aviation induced diurnal North Atlantic cirrus cover cycle
Article first published online: 29 AUG 2012
©2012. American Geophysical Union. All Rights Reserved.
Geophysical Research Letters
Volume 39, Issue 16, 28 August 2012
How to Cite
2012), Aviation induced diurnal North Atlantic cirrus cover cycle, Geophys. Res. Lett., 39, L16804, doi:10.1029/2012GL052590., , , and (
- Issue published online: 29 AUG 2012
- Article first published online: 29 AUG 2012
- Manuscript Accepted: 23 JUL 2012
- Manuscript Revised: 20 JUL 2012
- Manuscript Received: 5 JUN 2012
 Aviation induced cirrus (AIC) cover is identified from mean diurnal cycles of cirrus cover and air traffic density in the North Atlantic flight corridor. Traffic data for this region show an aviation “fingerprint” with two maxima during morning eastbound and afternoon westbound traffic. The same aviation fingerprint is found in cirrus cover. Cycle differences between west and east domain parts allow separating between aviation and natural diurnal changes. Cirrus cover is derived from 8 years of Meteosat infrared data. Linear contrail cover is estimated from the same data. Background cirrus without aviation impact is estimated from cirrus observations over the South Atlantic and from numerical weather prediction forecast. The cirrus cover cycle is well approximated by linear response to traffic density with fitted delay times of 2.3–4.1 h, implying AIC cover of 1–2%, more than expected from recent models.