Molecular-scale temperature

From Glossary of Meteorology

molecular-scale temperature

A temperature parameter TM defined by the following relation:
where T is the actual "kinetic" temperature, M0 the molecular weight of air at sea level (28.966), and M the molecular weight of air at the point where the temperature is being specified.

Molecular-scale temperature has application in specifying temperatures at extremely high altitudes (
see standard atmosphere). Below about 90 km, TM = T, but above that level, TM becomes increasingly greater than T.

Copyright 2022 American Meteorological Society (AMS). For permission to reuse any portion of this work, please contact Any use of material in this work that is determined to be “fair use” under Section 107 of the U.S. Copyright Act (17 U.S. Code § 107) or that satisfies the conditions specified in Section 108 of the U.S.Copyright Act (17 USC § 108) does not require AMS’s permission. Republication, systematic reproduction, posting in electronic form, such as on a website or in a searchable database, or other uses of this material, except as exempted by the above statement, require written permission or a license from AMS. Additional details are provided in the AMS Copyright Policy statement.