Intriguing aspects of polar-to-tropical mesospheric teleconnections during the 2018 SSW: A meteor radar network study

Sunkara Eswaraiah, Kyong-Hwan Seo, Kondapalli Niranjan Kumar, Audrey V. Koval, M. Venkat Ratnam, Chalachew Kindie Mengist, G Venkata Chalapathi, Huixin Liu, Young-Sil Kwak, Jin-Yun Jeong, Eugeny Merzlyakov, Christoph Jacobi, YongHa Kim, S. Vijaya Bhaskara Rao Bhaskara Rao, Nicholas Mitchell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Using a network of meteor radar observations, observational evidence of polar-to-tropical mesospheric coupling during the 2018 major sudden stratosphere warming (SSW) event in the northern hemisphere is presented. In the tropical lower mesosphere, a maximum zonal wind reversal (−24 m/s) is noted and compared with that identified in the extra-tropical regions. Moreover, a time delay in the wind reversal between the tropical/polar stations and the mid-latitudes is detected. A wide spectrum of waves with periods of 2 to 16 days and 30–60 days were observed. The wind reversal in the mesosphere is due to the propagation of dominant intra-seasonal oscillations (ISOs) of 30–60 days and the presence and superposition of 8-day period planetary waves (PWs). The ISO phase propagation is observed from high to low latitudes (60° N to 20° N) in contrast to the 8-day PW phase propagation, indicating the change in the meridional propagation of winds during SSW, hence the change in the meridional circulation. The superposition of dominant ISOs and weak 8-day PWs could be responsible for the delay of the wind reversal in the tropical mesosphere. Therefore, this study has strong implications for understanding the reversed (polar to tropical) mesospheric meridional circulation by considering the ISOs during SSW.
Original languageEnglish
Article number1302
Number of pages20
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 17 Aug 2023

Bibliographical note

The work was supported by a National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) grant funded by the Korean government (MSIP) (No. NRF-2020R1A2C2009414) and the Korea Meteorological Administration (KMA) Research and Development Program under grant KMI2021–0141. Collm and Kazan wind observations were supported by DFG through the grant JA 836/38-1 and by RFBR through the grant 18-505-12048. RMC and EP flux calculations were supported by the Ministry of Science and Higher Education of the Russian Federation (FSZU-2023-0002) RFBR through the grant 20-77-10006.

Data Availability Statement:
The MR network data can be accessed with the following DOI link: (accessed on 12 August 2023). The authors also thank the ERA5 and MERRA-2 team for providing the wind and temperature data used in the present study. The ERA5 datasets provided by the European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts (ECMWF) are publicly available at: (accessed on 12 August 2023). The MERRA-2 dataset can be obtained from (accessed on 12 August 2023). The UK Met Office data can be obtained at (accessed on 12 August 2023).


  • intra-seasonal oscillations (ISOs)
  • meridional circulation
  • mesosphere wind reversal
  • meteor radar network
  • planetary waves (PWs)
  • sudden stratospheric warming (SSW)
  • tropical–extra-tropical mesosphere

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Science (miscellaneous)


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