Comments on the possible effect of NO/sub X/ injection in the stratosphere due to atmospheric nuclear weapons tests. Page: 3 of 6
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first establish the effects to be expected in 03 distribution and then go to
the data and seek corroboration or refutation. Foley and Ruderman fail to make
clear the type and magnitude of change i, 03 they expected to find and yet
they concluded they did not see it. One may assume that they used the estimates
of ref. 3 as the basis of caparison, since these are most widely circulated.
But a careful reading of ref. 3 will reveal that the estimated NOx catalytic
effects on 03 ranges from 3% to 50% reduction depending on the equilibrium
(fixed) NO distribution and concentration (pp. 87-92, ref. 3). It should be
pointed out that these results are steady state calculations, i.e. after the
system has fully reacted. The highly important downward transport of 03 from
the chemically active upper stratosphere has been neglected completely. This
is a crucial omission in that the highly perturbed 03 profiles in ref. 3 are
not in dynamical equilibrium. In fact the dynamical interaction between the
transport mechanism and chemical kinetics resulting in a large reduction in
the observable effect of the NC catalytic process has already been pointed
out.6 One should also recognize the differences between the solutions calculated
from continuous injection of NO due to SST's and from the "delta function"
injections of nuclear tests. In the former case a steady state calculation
is possible while in the latter case one must deal with a time dependent problem.
None of these cons ' d-ions seem to have been treated by Foley and Ruderman.
This may have led to expectations of an unrealistically large perturbation in
the 03 observations.
We have made some preliminary computations with a 1-D model combining
diffusion and the NO catalytic cycle. These indicated that the maximum reduction
in 03 would occur approximately 250 days after NO injection and would amount to
<15% reduction in total 03. If these effects of the NO injection are valid
one would not have expected them to be detectable by the cursory examination
of the 03 observations reported by Foley and Ruderman. They reported no analysis
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Chang, J.S. Comments on the possible effect of NO/sub X/ injection in the stratosphere due to atmospheric nuclear weapons tests., report, January 1, 1973; Livermore, California. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc1034298/m1/3/: accessed February 20, 2019), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.