Bulletin Géodésique (1946-1975)

, Volume 38, Issue 1, pp 42–54 | Cite as

Atmospheric refraction above the Inland Ice in North Greenland

  • W. S. B. Paterson
Notices Scientifiques


Values of the refraction coefficient, calculated from simultaneous reciprocal vertical angles measured on a traverse across North Greenland, and meteorological observations made at the same time are analysed statistically. A relation is established between diurnal changes in refraction and changes in air temperature. Values of the refraction coefficient are also correlated with wind speed, amount of cloud, and presence of drifting snow near the surface. No correlation is found between refraction and atmospheric pressure over the range of pressures encountered. A regression equation is given for estimating refraction from observed meteorological conditions. Direct measurements of temperature gradient in the air layers near the surface are compared with gradients deduced from the refraction observations.


L’article présente une analyse statistique des variations du coefficient de réfraction au Groenland et de ses correlations avec les observations météorologiques—température, vitesse du vent, nébulosité, vent de neige. On compare également les gradients de la température, tels qu’ils résultent de mesures directes et des mesures de la réfraction.


Der Inhalt der vorliegenden Arbeit ist eine statistische Analyse der Schwankungen des Refraktionskoeffizienten in Grönland und seiner Korrelationen mit den meteorologischen Beobachtungen, also mit der Temperatur, der Windgeschwindigkeit, der Dunstbildung und des Flugschnees. Ferner werden Vergleiche der Temperaturgradienten angestellt, die sich einerseits aus direkten Messungen, andererseits aus den Refraktions-messungen ergeben.


L’articolo presenta un analisi statistica delle variazioni del coefficiente di rifrazione in Groenlandia e delle correlazioni con le osservazioni meteorologiche: temperatura, velocità del vento, nebulosità, vento di neve. Vi compaiono anche i gradienti della temperatura come essi risultano da misure dirette e da misure della rifrazione.


El articulo presenta un análisis estadístico de las variaciones del coeficiente de refracción en Groenlandia y de sus correlaciones con las observaciones meteorológicas—temperatura, velocidad del viento, nubosidad, viento de nieve. Se comparan igualmente los gradientes de la temperatura, tales como resultan de medidas directas y de las medidas de la refracción.


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  1. 1.
    Paterson, W. S. B. andSlesser, C. G. M., ‘Trigonometrical levelling across the inland ice in North Greenland’,Empire Survey Review. Not yet published.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Bomford, G.,Geodesy. pp. 156–167, Oxford (1952).Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Bourgoin, J.-P., ‘La réfraction terrestre dans les basses couches de l’atmosphère sur “l’inlandsis” groenlandais’,Ann. Géophys. Tome 10, 2 (1954), 168–174.Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Nevière, J., ‘Campagne au Groenland 1948–1949–1950. Nivellement géodésique de “l’inlandsis”’,Ann. Géophys. Tome 10, 1 (1954), 66–88.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Butterworths Scientific Publications 1955

Authors and Affiliations

  • W. S. B. Paterson

There are no affiliations available

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