Study of equatorial E region irregularities using rare daytime VHF scintillation observations

Yadav, V. ; Kakad, B. ; Pant, T. K. ; Bhattacharyya, A. ; Prasad, D. S. V. V. D. (2015) Study of equatorial E region irregularities using rare daytime VHF scintillation observations Journal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics, 120 (10). pp. 9074-9086. ISSN 0148-0227

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Scintillations on VHF radio signal are sparsely observed during daytime due to unavailability of strong electron density irregularities in equatorial E or F region. Type I/II irregularities observed at E region altitudes during the daytime are linked with either two-stream or gradient drift instability. The occurrence of these irregularities in presence of strong blanketing Es (Esb) can produce weak-moderate scintillations on VHF signal during daytime. Such sparse daytime VHF scintillations are used in the present study to retrieve information about E region irregularities, which are generally examined with radar observations. We use spaced receiver scintillation observations on 251 MHz signal transmitted from geostationary satellite UFO2 (71.2°E) and recorded at Tirunelveli (8.5°N, 77.8°E, dip latitude 0.6°N). Ionosonde data from Trivandrum (8.5°N, 76.6°E, dip latitude 0.5°N) during 2003–2005 is used to confirm the association of daytime scintillations with Esb. The daytime scintillations last for 15–45 min during postnoon hours. Their occurrence closely matches the peak occurrence time of Esb. For the first time, spatial scale lengths of E region irregularities are obtained using the technique introduced by Bhattacharyya et al. (2003). The observed spatial scales are validated using theoretical model. The theoretical model manifests 6–19% density fluctuations in the E region to produce weak scintillations (0.15 ≤S4≤ 0.4) on 251 MHz. The study reveals that scale lengths of E region irregularities are smaller on counter equatorial electrojet (CEEJ) days than non-CEEJ days, which could be resulting from lower electron temperatures in E region on CEEJ days.

Item Type:Article
Source:Copyright of this article belongs to American Geophysical Union.
ID Code:112403
Deposited On:09 Jan 2018 10:29
Last Modified:09 Jan 2018 10:29

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