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Annales Geophysicae An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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Volume 21, issue 2
Ann. Geophys., 21, 583–596, 2003
© Author(s) 2003. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
Ann. Geophys., 21, 583–596, 2003
© Author(s) 2003. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.

  28 Feb 2003

28 Feb 2003

Geomagnetic storm effects at F1-layer heights from incoherent scatter observations

A. V. Mikhailov1 and K. Schlegel2 A. V. Mikhailov and K. Schlegel
  • 1Institute of Terrestrial Magnetism, Ionosphere and Radio Wave Propagation, Troitsk, Moscow Region 142190, Russia
  • 2Max-Planck-Institute für Aeronomie, Max-Planck-Str. 2, D-37191 Katlenburg-Lindau, Germany

Abstract. Storm effects at F1-layer heights (160–200 km) were analyzed for the first time using Millstone Hill (mid-latitudes) and EISCAT (auroral zone) incoherent scatter (IS) observations. The morphological study has shown both increases (positive effect) and decreases (negative effect) in electron concentration. Negative storm effects prevail for all seasons and show a larger magnitude than positive ones, the magnitude of the effect normally increasing with height. At Millstone Hill the summer storm effects are small compared to other seasons, but they are well detectable. At EISCAT this summer decrease takes place only with respect to the autumnal period and the autumn/spring asymmetry in the storm effects is well pronounced. Direct and significant correlation exists between deviations in electron concentration at the F1-layer heights and in the F2-layer maximum. Unlike the F2-layer the F1-region demonstrates a relatively small reaction to geomagnetic disturbances despite large perturbations in thermospheric parameters. Aeronomic parameters extracted from IS observations are used to explain the revealed morphology. A competition between atomic and molecular ion contributions to Ne variations was found to be the main physical mechanism controlling the F1-layer storm effect. The revealed morphology is shown to be related with neutral composition (O, O2, N2) seasonal and storm-time variations. The present day understanding of the F1-region formation mechanisms is sufficient to explain the observed storm effects.

Key words. Atmospheric composition and structure (thermosphere-composition and chemistry); ionosphere (ion chemistry and composition; ionospheric disturbances)

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