Note on the Reaction of the Upper Atmosphere Potassium Layer to the 1999 Leonid Meteor Storm

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We have performed an experiment to study the impact of the 1999 Leonid meteor storm on the upper atmosphere potassium layer. For the experiment, we used a ground-based K-lidar located at the Observatorio del Teide on the island of Tenerife (28°N, 17°W). As is now known from external sources, the activity of the storm exhibited a sharp peak of activity on November 18, 1999 close to 02:05 UT with a full width at half maximum of only 45 min. Due to unfavorable weather conditions at our lidar site, we could not observe the behavior of the K layer immediately before or during the meteor storm. However, about 1 h past the peak of the Leonid storm, the clouds above the site started to show small holes. Hence, between 03:24 and 05:22 UT, we were able to perform lidar soundings of the K layer above our site. From those we can conclude that the 1999 Leonid meteor storm has not led to an outstanding enhancement of the upper atmosphere potassium layer.

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