Accession Number : AD0722031

Title :   Possible Effects of Atmospheric Particles on Fireball Emissions,

Corporate Author : RAND CORP SANTA MONICA CALIF

Personal Author(s) : Ory,Hal A. ; Gilmore,Forrest R.

Report Date : FEB 1971

Pagination or Media Count : 19

Abstract : In order to investigate the possible effects of natural atmospheric particles on fireball emission, the available data on particle distribution in the atmosphere are used to calculate the mass fraction as a function of altitude for sulfate particles and particles of meteoritic origin. For altitudes below 20 km the mass fraction of sulfate particles is 10 to the(-10) power to 10 to the(-9) power; above 20 km, the mass fraction decreases rapidly with altitude. The mass fraction of SO2 vapor is probably more than an order of magnitude greater, based on observations at low altitudes. The meteoritic mass fraction shows practically no altitude dependence, and is approximately 1.3 x 10 to the(-10) power over the entire range of interest. Based on a simple thermodynamic model, the mass of meteoritic material vaporized in a fireball is less than half a pound per megaton of bomb yield. Within the limitations of the data used in the calculations, the following conclusions are reached concerning possible effects of atmospheric particles on fireball emission: The contribution of sulfate particles is probably negligible compared with that of atmospheric SO2 vapor, which itself has negligible effect; The contribution of meteoritic particles is negligible compared with that of bomb debris material. (Author)

Descriptors :   (*ATMOSPHERES, PARTICLES), (*NUCLEAR EXPLOSIONS, EXPLOSION EFFECTS), SULFATES, DENSITY, THERMAL RADIATION, CLOUDS, METEORS

Subject Categories : Atmospheric Physics

Distribution Statement : APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE