Metal fluorescence lidar (light detection and ranging) and the middle atmosphere
Metal fluorescence lidar (light detection and ranging) has come of age as a tool for exploring the middle atmosphere. The Colorado State University sodium lidar system exemplifies these lidar systems, using a number of interesting techniques to achieve measurements of temperature and wind speed in the middle atmosphere. This and other fluorescence lidar systems have illuminated a number of interesting properties of the mesopause region (within the middle atmosphere). This paper reviews both the laboratory physics necessary to construct fluorescence lidar systems, and the advances in atmospheric science that have resulted from the data collected.