Case study of inclined sporadic E layers in the Earth's ionosphere observed by CHAMP/GPS radio occultations: Coupling between the tilted plasma layers and internal waves

Vladimir N. Gubenko, A. G. Pavelyev, I. A. Kirillovich, Y. A. Liou

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations

Abstract

We have used the radio occultation (RO) satellite data CHAMP/GPS (Challenging Minisatellite Payload/Global Positioning System) for studying the ionosphere of the Earth. A method for deriving the parameters of ionospheric structures is based upon an analysis of the RO signal variations in the phase path and intensity. This method allows one to estimate the spatial displacement of a plasma layer with respect to the ray perigee, and to determine the layer inclination and height correction values. In this paper, we focus on the case study of inclined sporadic E (E s ) layers in the high-latitude ionosphere based on available CHAMP RO data. Assuming that the internal gravity waves (IGWs) with the phase-fronts parallel to the ionization layer surfaces are responsible for the tilt angles of sporadic plasma layers, we have developed a new technique for determining the parameters of IGWs linked with the inclined E s structures. A small-scale internal wave may be modulating initially horizontal E s layer in height and causing a direction of the plasma density gradient to be rotated and aligned with that of the wave propagation vector k. The results of determination of the intrinsic wave frequency and period, vertical and horizontal wavelengths, intrinsic vertical and horizontal phase speeds, and other characteristics of IGWs under study are presented and discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1702-1716
Number of pages15
JournalAdvances in Space Research
Volume61
Issue number7
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Apr 2018

Keywords

  • Earth's ionosphere
  • Inclined plasma layer
  • Internal gravity wave
  • Radio occultation

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