Remote sensing of the ignorosphere: Need for a complete earth-ionosphere radio wave propagation model
01 Jan 2018-Vol. 53, pp 527-543
TL;DR: In this article, a short review on retrieval mechanism of the D-region ionospheric plasma using sub-ionospheric VLF/LF data is presented, where the authors discuss importance of VLFs/LFs observation techniques and significant earth-ionosphere propagation models to diagnose electron-ion distribution in the lower ionosphere.
Abstract: We present a short review on retrieval mechanism of the D-region ionospheric plasma using sub-ionospheric VLF/LF data. First, we discuss importance of VLF/LF observation techniques and significant earth-ionosphere propagation models to diagnose electron-ion distribution in the lower ionosphere. Then we discuss about VLF/LF perturbations due to different geophysical phenomena and corresponding numerical simulations applied to retrieve the state of the D-region ionosphere.
01 Jul 2018
TL;DR: In this paper, the effects of the total solar eclipse on the VLF signal were investigated using the knowledge of the lower ionospheric chemical and physical properties, which is not well studied till date.
Abstract: The variation in the solar Extreme Ultraviolet (EUV) radiation flux by any measure is the most dominant natural source to produce perturbations or modulations in the ionospheric chemical and plasma properties. A solar eclipse, though a very rare phenomenon, is similarly bound to produce a significant short time effect on the local ionospheric properties. The influence of the ionizing solar flux reduction during a solar eclipse on the lower ionosphere or, more precisely, the D-region, can be studied with the observation of Very Low Frequency (VLF) radio wave signal modulation. The interpretation of such an effect on VLF signals requires a knowledge of the D-region ion chemistry, which is not well studied till date. Dominant parameters which govern the ion chemistry, such as the recombination coefficients, are poorly known. The occurrence of events such as a solar eclipse provides us with an excellent opportunity to investigate the accuracy of our knowledge of the chemical condition in this part of Earth’s atmosphere and the properties which control the ionospheric stability under such disturbances. In this paper, using existing knowledge of the lower ionospheric chemical and physical properties we carry out an interpretation of the effects obtained during the total solar eclipse of 22 of July 2009 on the VLF signal. Data obtained from a week long campaign conducted by the Indian Centre for Space Physics (ICSP) over the Indian subcontinent has been used for this purpose. Both positive and negative amplitude changes during the eclipse were observed along various receiver locations. In this paper, data for a propagation path between a Indian Navy VLF transmitter named VTX3 and a pair of receivers in India are used. We start from the observed solar flux during the eclipse and calculate the ionization during the whole time span over most of the influenced region in a range of height. We incorporate a D-region ion-chemistry model to find the equilibrium ion density over the region and employ the LWPC code to find the VLF signal amplitude. To tackle the uncertainty in the values of the recombination coefficients we explore a range of values in the chemical evolution model. We achieve two goals by this exercise: First, we have been able to reproduce the trends, if not the exact signal variation, of the VLF signal modulations during a solar eclipse at two different receiving stations with sufficient accuracy purely from theoretical modeling, and second our knowledge of some of the D-region ion-chemistry parameters is now improved.
TL;DR: In this article, the D-region ionospheric disturbances due to the tropical cyclone Fani over the Indian Ocean have been analyzed using Very Low Frequency (VLF) radio communication signals from three transmitters (VTX, NWC and JJI) received at two low latitude stations (Kolkata-CUB and Cooch Behar-CHB).
Abstract: The D-region ionospheric disturbances due to the tropical cyclone Fani over the Indian Ocean have been analysed using Very Low Frequency (VLF) radio communication signals from three transmitters (VTX, NWC and JJI) received at two low latitude stations (Kolkata-CUB and Cooch Behar-CHB). The cyclone Fani formed from a depression on 26th April, 2019 over the Bay of Bengal (Northeastern part of the Indian Ocean) and turned into an extremely severe cyclone with maximum 1-minute sustained winds of 250 km/h on 2 May, 2019 which made landfall on 3 May, 2019. Out of six propagation paths, five propagation paths, except the JJI-CHB which was far away from the cyclone track, showed strong perturbations beyond 3 σ level compared to unperturbed signals. Consistent good correlations of VLF signal perturbations with the wind speed and cyclone pressure have been seen for both the receiving stations. Computations of radio signal perturbations at CUB and CHB using the Long Wave Propagation Capability (LWPC) code revealed a Gaussian perturbation in the D-region ionosphere. Analysis of atmospheric temperature at different layers from the NASA’s TIMED satellite revealed a cooling effect near the tropopause and warming effects near the stratopause and upper mesosphere regions on 3 May, 2019. This study shows that the cyclone Fani perturbed the whole atmosphere, from troposphere to ionosphere and the VLF waves responded to the disturbances in the conductivity profiles of the lower ionosphere.
01 Dec 2006
TL;DR: In this article, a new class of early/fast VLF events with recoveries of up to 20 min was introduced, much longer than typical Early/fast and Lightning-induced Electron Precipitation (LEP) events which recover to pre-event levels in ≲200 s.
Abstract:  We introduce a new class of Early/fast VLF events with recoveries of up to 20 min, much longer than typical Early/fast and Lightning-induced Electron Precipitation (LEP) events which recover to pre-event levels in ≲200 s. Three distinct types of long recovery events are observed, each exhibiting different characteristics, with the observed features of at least some of the event types consistent with the possibility of persistent ionization at altitudes below 60 km as put forth by Lehtinen and Inan (2007).
TL;DR: In this article, the authors reported disturbance in the mid-latitude sub-ionospheric VLF radio signals due to the super geomagnetic storm which began on 17 March 2015.
Abstract: This paper reports disturbance in the mid-latitude sub-ionospheric VLF radio signals due to the super geomagnetic storm which began on 17 March 2015. Narrow-band signals from the NAA transmitter are studied for the storm period recorded at eight mid-latitude receiving stations spread over the Europe and USA. Daytime signals amplitude at all places showed a disturbing pattern after 17 March. Fluctuation in the nighttime signals significantly increased in the succeeding nights. As a primary effect of the storm, the entire diurnal signals in the transoceanic west to east long propagation paths enhanced by 3–5 dB, which gradually decreased over the period of ~ 10 days following the storm recovery. A different behavior was observed in the east to west short propagation paths over the landmass, where during the peak storm the daily variations of the VLF amplitude reduced to 20–25% of a normal day and, after ~ 10 days the signals returned to the pre-storm condition. Modeling of the radio waves in the west to east paths shows that the D-region electron density was increased by ~ 8-fold and varied up to 10 days. Electron density variations in the D-region closely follows the variations of precipitated electron flux as observed by the POES satellite over the region. The elevated electron density in the D-region ionosphere caused by the extension of the auroral precipitation to the mid-latitudes along with interference among the various waveguide modes in the earth-ionosphere waveguide during the storm is suggested for the cause of observed VLF signals behaviors.
TL;DR: In this article, the amplitude and phase of four VLF transmitters in the frequency range 16-24 kHz were measured during the total solar eclipse observed in Europe on August 11, 1999.
Abstract: During the total solar eclipse observed in Europe on August 11, 1999, measurements were made of the amplitude and phase of four VLF transmitters in the frequency range 16–24 kHz Five receiver sites were set up, and significant variations in phase and amplitude are reported for 17 paths, more than any previously during an eclipse Distances from transmitter to receiver ranged from 90 to 14,510 km, although the majority were 10,000 km Negative phase changes were observed on most paths, independent of path length Although there was significant variation from path to path, the typical changes observed were ∼3 dB and ∼50° The changes observed were modeled using the Long Wave Propagation Capability waveguide code Maximum eclipse effects occurred when the Wait inverse scale height parameter β was 05 km−1 and the effective ionospheric height parameter H′ was 79 km, compared with β=043 km−1 and H′=71 km for normal daytime conditions The resulting changes in modeled amplitude and phase show good agreement with the majority of the observations The modeling undertaken provides an interpretation of why previous estimates of height change during eclipses have shown such a range of values A D region gas-chemistry model was compared with electron concentration estimates inferred from the observations made during the solar eclipse Quiet-day H′ and β parameters were used to define the initial ionospheric profile The gas-chemistry model was then driven only by eclipse-related solar radiation levels The calculated electron concentration values at 77 km altitude throughout the period of the solar eclipse show good agreement with the values determined from observations at all times, which suggests that a linear variation in electron production rate with solar ionizing radiation is reasonable At times of minimum electron concentration the chemical model predicts that the D region profile would be parameterized by the same β and H′ as the LWPC model values, and rocket profiles, during totality and can be considered a validation of the chemical processes defined within the model
TL;DR: In this article, the authors used the continuity equation for the electron component and the amplitude time delay to estimate the effective recombination coefficient for the D-region during solar flares, which was found to be in good agreement with measurements by different techniques, as well as with the independent estimates of β and H ′.
Abstract: VLF amplitude enhancements of the NAA/24.0 kHz signal (Maine, USA), registered by the Belgrade AbsPAL facility during solar flares, have been related to solar X-ray fluxes measured by the GOES-12 satellite. The observed regular appearance of the VLF amplitude/phase peak behind the peak of the corresponding X-ray flux has been characterized by the time delay assigned to each of the 97 out of 114 flare-induced distinct amplitude/phase enhancement events analysed. The measurements reported pertain to the period May–August of the years 2004 and 2005 and have been used to model the electron density enhancements of the D-region during solar flares. On the grounds of the continuity equation for the electron component and the amplitude time delay, the effective recombination coefficient has been estimated to range from 10 - 13 m 3 / s to 10 - 11 m 3 / s , depending on the X-ray maximum flux. By integrating the continuity equation, the time variation of the electron density during solar flare occurrence has been restored. Enhancements up to two orders of magnitude, for X-class flares, with respect to undisturbed conditions were predicted. The results obtained have been found to be in good agreement with measurements by different techniques, as well as with the independent estimates of β and H ′ . Errors introduced by the applied approach have been critically examined to place the uncertainty of the results arrived at between 10% and 20%.
TL;DR: In this article, the authors analyzed quantitatively the results from coordinated measurement consisting of ELF transients, VLF subionopheric disturbances and lightning discharges associated with the optical events.
Abstract: Red sprites and elves were observed in Japan during the winter of 1998/99 in Hokuriku region by the group of Tohoku Univ. [Fukunishi et al., EOS, 80(46), F217, 1999]. We analyze quantitatively the results from coordinated measurement consisting of ELF transients, VLF subionopheric disturbances and lightning discharges associated with the optical events. We find the clear straightforward relationship between charge transfer of the parent discharge calculated from ELF (f < 15 Hz) and the ionospheric disturbances regardless of the types of optical events indicating significant atmosphere-mesosphere-ionosphere coupling. Sprites tend to associate with a large ionospheric disturbance (−13 ∼ + 4.6 dB) with a large charge transfer (52 ∼ 175 C), whereas a large lightning peak current (+223 ∼ + 470 kA) (or slow-tail amplitude) leading to the strong EMP is necessary to initiate elves, but with rather small ionospheric disturbances.
TL;DR: In this paper, a gigantic periodic flare from the soft γ repeater SGR 1900+14 produced enhanced ionization at ionospheric altitudes of 30 to 90 km, which was observed as unusually large amplitude and phase changes of very low frequency (VLF) signals propagating in the Earth-ionosphere waveguide.
Abstract: A gigantic periodic flare from the soft γ repeater SGR 1900+14 produced enhanced ionization at ionospheric altitudes of 30 to 90 km, which was observed as unusually large amplitude and phase changes of very low frequency (VLF) signals propagating in the Earth-ionosphere waveguide. The VLF signals remained perturbed for ∼5 min and exhibited the 5.16 s periodicity of the giant flare detected on the Ulysses spacecraft [Hurley et al., 1999]. Quantitative analysis indicates the presence of an intense initial low energy (3–10 keV) photon component that was not detectable by the Ulysses instrument.
TL;DR: In this article, a massive γ-ray flare from SGR 1806-20 created a massive disturbance in the daytime lower ionosphere, as evidenced by unusually large changes in amplitude/phase of subionospherically propagating VLF signals.
Abstract:  The giant γ-ray flare from SGR 1806-20 created a massive disturbance in the daytime lower ionosphere, as evidenced by unusually large changes in amplitude/phase of subionospherically propagating VLF signals. The perturbations of the 21.4 kHz NPM (Lualualei, Hawaii) signal observed at PA (Palmer Station, Antarctica) correspond to electron densities increasing by a factor of ∼100 to ∼103 cm−3 at ∼60 km and ≳1000 to ∼10 cm−3 at ∼30 km altitude. Enhanced conductivity produced by flare onset endured for >1 hour, the time scale determined by mutual neutralization. A brief (∼100 ms) low frequency (∼3 to 6 kHz) emission is also observed during the flare onset.
Related Papers (5)
VLF帯大地-電離圏導波管伝搬を用いた電子密度同定問題における適切なパラメタ選択に関する検討;VLF帯大地-電離圏導波管伝搬を用いた電子密度同定問題における適切なパラメタ選択に関する検討;A Consideration on Appropriate Parameters for Identifying Electron Density Profile in the Lower Ionosphere by using VLF Wave Propagation in the Earth-ionosphere Waveguide
01 Jan 1975