Articles | Volume 17, issue 11
30 Nov 1999
30 Nov 1999

Letter to the editor
CUTLASS observations of a high-m ULF wave and its consequences for the DOPE HF Doppler sounder

D. M. Wright and T. K. Yeoman

Abstract. The CUTLASS (Co-operative UK Twin Located Auroral Sounding System) Finland HF radar, whilst operating in a high spatial and temporal resolution mode, has measured the ionospheric signature of a naturally occurring ULF wave in scatter artificially generated by the Tromsù Heater. The wave had a period of 100 s and exhibited curved phase fronts across the heated volume (about 180 km along a single radar beam). Spatial information provided by CUTLASS has enabled an m-number for the wave of about 38 to be determined. This high-m wave was not detected by the IMAGE (International Monitor for Auroral Geomagnetic Efects) network of ground magnetometers, as expected for a wave of a small spatial scale size. These observations over the first independent confirmation of the existence of the ground uncorrelated ULF wave signatures previously reported in measurements recorded from an HF Doppler sounder located in the vicinity of Tromsö. These results both demonstrate a new capability for geophysical exploration from the combined CUTLASS-EISCAT ionospheric Heater experiment, and provide a verification of the HF Doppler technique for the investigation of small scale ULF waves.

Key words.  Ionosphere (ionosphere – magnetosphere interactions) . Magnetospheric physics (magnetosphere – ionosphere interactions; MHD waves and instabilities)