Ion-neutral coupling in the high-latitude F-layer from incoherent scatter and Fabry-Perot interferometer measurements
Abstract. Since the auroral ionosphere provides an important energy sink for the magnetosphere, ionosphere-thermosphere coupling must be investigated when considering the energy budget of the ionosphere-magnetosphere coupling. We present the first Scandinavian ground-based study of high-latitude F-region ion-neutral frictional heating where ion velocity and temperature are measured by the EISCAT incoherent scatter radar as well as neutral wind and temperature being measured simultaneously by a Fabry-Perot interferometer. A geomagnetically active period (Kp = 7– – 5–) and quiet period (Kp = 0+ – 0) were studied. Neglecting the neutral wind can result in errors of frictional heating estimates of 60% or more in the F-layer. About 96% of the local ion temperature enhancement over the neutral temperature is accounted for by ion-neutral frictional heating.
Key words: Ionosphere (auroral ionosphere; ionosphere-atmosphere interactions)