Small scale ionospheric irregularities near regions of soft particle precipitation: scintillation and EISCAT observations

L. Kersley*, S. E. Pryse, N. S. Wheadon

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Results are presented from a coordinated experiment involving scintillation observations using transmissions from NNSS satellites and simultaneous measurements with the EISCAT ionospheric radar facility. The scintillation was used to indicate the presence of sub-kilometre scale irregularities while the radar yielded information on the larger structures in the background ionosphere. Two examples are discussed in which localised patches of scintillation were observed at L-shells near 'blob' like enhancements in F-region ionisation density. Elevated electron temperatures indicated that the enhancements may have had their origins in soft particle precipitation. While structuring of the precipitation on the 100 m scale cannot be completely ruled out as a source of the irregularities, in one case the blob gradient can be shown to be stable to the E λ B mechanism. The most likely cause of the irregularities appears to be shearing of the high velocity plasma flow in a region adjacent to the density enhancement. This region is characterised by a high ion temperature while the resulting scintillation has a shallow spectral slope.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1047-1055
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Atmospheric and Terrestrial Physics
Volume50
Issue number12
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Dec 1988

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