Simultaneous Observations of Equatorial Plasma Irregularities using Ground and Space-Based Instruments

Simultaneous Observations of Equatorial Plasma Irregularities using Ground and Space-Based Instruments

Sovit Khadka1, Cesar Valladares2Patricia Doherty1

1Boston College, 2University of Texas at Dallas

AGU FALL MEETING - Monday, 12 December 2016  13:40 - 18:00 Moscone South - Poster Hall - San Francisco - USA

Correspondence to:

Sovit Khadka,
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Equatorial plasma bubbles (EPB) are one of the most important phenomena of space weather. A large variety of the numerical as well as empirical ionospheric models have been developed to understand their origin. EPB as well as plasma enhancement (blobs) are main indications of ionospheric irregularities in the low latitudes that disturb the ionosphere producing deep fading of communication and navigation signals. We have examined the behavior of total electron content (TEC), S4 index, TEC depletions and enhancements in the low latitude ionosphere detected with GPS receivers in the American sector and correlated with the existence of the ionospheric irregularities observed with the SWARM constellation when it flies above the Continent. Analysis of data is mainly performed in the American low latitude regions for several specific days of SWARM satellite observations during the first months of the satellites operations. Satellite passes are used to examine density variations of the depletions between minutes. The ground-based data serve to indicate the variability of the background ionosphere prior and during the development of the EPBs. In this study, we discuss the role played by various ionospheric parameters of the equatorial ionosphere in the occurrence, growth, expansion and decay characteristics of plasma irregularities seen in the EPBs and blobs.

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