Applied Sciences, Vol. 13, Pages 6354: Simulating Atmospheric Characteristics and Daytime Astronomical Seeing Using Weather Research and Forecasting Model

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Applied Sciences, Vol. 13, Pages 6354: Simulating Atmospheric Characteristics and Daytime Astronomical Seeing Using Weather Research and Forecasting Model

Applied Sciences doi: 10.3390/app13106354

Authors:
A. Y. Shikhovtsev
P. G. Kovadlo
A. A. Lezhenin
V. S. Gradov
P. O. Zaiko
M. A. Khitrykau
K. E. Kirichenko
M. B. Driga
A. V. Kiselev
I. V. Russkikh
V. A. Obolkin
M. Yu. Shikhovtsev

The present study is aimed at the development of a novel empirical base for application to ground-based astronomical telescopes. A Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) model is used for description of atmospheric flow structure with a high spatial resolution within the Baikal Astrophysical Observatory (BAO) region. Mesoscale vortex structures are found within the atmospheric boundary layer, which affect the quality of astronomical images. The results of simulations show that upward air motions in the lower atmosphere are suppressed both above the cold surface of Lake Baikal and inside mesoscale eddy structures. A model of the outer scale of turbulence for BAO is developed. In this work, we consider the seeing parameter that represents the full width at half-maximum of the point spread function. Optical turbulence profiles are obtained and daytime variations of seeing are estimated. Vertical profiles of optical turbulence are optimized taking into account data from direct optical observations of solar images.

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