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Annales Geophysicae An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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Volume 18, issue 1
Ann. Geophys., 18, 74–80, 2000
© European Geosciences Union 2000
Ann. Geophys., 18, 74–80, 2000
© European Geosciences Union 2000

  31 Jan 2000

31 Jan 2000

Ionospheric signatures of magnetospheric boundaries in the post-noon sector

S. T. Berry1, L. Kersley1, J. Moen2,*, and W. F. Denig2 S. T. Berry et al.
  • 1Department of Physics, University of Wales, Aberystwyth SY23 3BZ, UK
  • E-mail:
  • 2Air Force Research Laboratory, Space Vehicles Directorate, Hanscom AFB, MA01731, USA
  • Correspondence to: L. Kersley
  • *On leave from Arctic Geophysics, University Courses on Svalbard (UNIS), N-9170 Longyearbyen, Norway

Abstract. Spatial structures in ionospheric electron density revealed in a tomographic image have been identified with auroral forms and related to their sources in precipitating particles observed by DMSP satellites. The observations of plasma enhancements relate to discrete auroral arcs seen in the post-noon sector, identified by both red- and green-line emissions measured by a meridional scanning photometer. The features lie within a very narrow latitudinal band on L-shells where the satellite detectors observed electron precipitation classified as from the boundary plasma sheet (BPS). The harder particles are identified with an E-region structure, while further north the precipitation is softer, resulting in a localised F-layer blob and 630.0 nm emissions. A steep gradient in plasma density represent a signature in the ionosphere of the central plasma sheet (CPS)/BPS boundary. A transition to a less-structured F-layer is found on crossing the convection reversal boundary..

Key words. Ionosphere (auroral ionosphere; ionosphere-magnetosphere interactions; polar ionosphere)

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