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CR 26:1-4 (2004)  -  doi:10.3354/cr026001

Impact of unusually clear weather on United States daily temperature range following 9/11/2001

Adam J. Kalkstein*, Robert C. Balling Jr

Department of Geography, Arizona State University, Tempe, Arizona 85287-0104, USA

ABSTRACT: Several investigators have suggested that the airline shutdown following the 9/11 terrorist attacks led to a reduction of jet contrails and an increase in the diurnal temperature range (DTR) across the US. Here, we use an air-mass approach to control for weather conditions across the country following 9/11 in order to more accurately assess the observed patterns in the temperature range. We indeed find a higher-than-average DTR shortly after the attacks, but we find that the unusually clear weather across the US more than accounts for the observed DTR.

KEY WORDS: Jet contrails · Diurnal temperature range · Air masses

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