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Annales Geophysicae An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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Volume 22, issue 4
Ann. Geophys., 22, 1077–1091, 2004
https://doi.org/10.5194/angeo-22-1077-2004
© Author(s) 2004. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
Ann. Geophys., 22, 1077–1091, 2004
https://doi.org/10.5194/angeo-22-1077-2004
© Author(s) 2004. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.

  02 Apr 2004

02 Apr 2004

STARE velocities: 2. Evening westward electron flow

M. Uspensky1,5, A. Koustov2, P. Janhunen1, E. Nielsen3, K. Kauristie1, O. Amm1, R. Pellinen1, H. Opgenoorth4, and R. Pirjola1 M. Uspensky et al.
  • 1Finnish Meteorological Institute, Geophysical Research, P.O.Box 503, FIN-00101, Helsinki, Finland
  • 2Institute of Space and Atmospheric Studies, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, S7N 5E2, Canada
  • 3Max-Planck-Institute f¨ur Aeronomie, D-37191 Katlenburg-Lindau, Germany
  • 4Swedish Institute of Space Physics, Box 537, SE-751 21, Uppsala, Sweden
  • 5On leave from Murmansk State Technical University, Sportivnaya 13, Murmansk, 183010, Russia

Abstract. Four evening events and one morning event of joint EISCAT/STARE observations during ~22h are considered and the differences between observed STARE line-of-sight (l-o-s) velocities and EISCAT electron drift velocities projected onto the STARE beams are studied. We demonstrate that the double-pulse technique, which is currently in use in the STARE routine data handling, typically underestimates the true phase velocity as inferred from the multi-pulse STARE data. We show that the STARE velocities are persistently smaller (1.5–2 times) than the EISCAT velocities, even for the multi-pulse data. The effect seems to be more pronounced in the evening sector when the Finland radar observes at large flow angles. We evaluate the performance of the ion-acoustic approach (IAA, Nielsen and Schlegel, 1985) and the off-orthogonal fluid approach (OOFA, Uspensky et al., 2003) techniques to predict the true electron drift velocity for the base event of 12 February 1999. The IAA technique predicts the convection reasonably well for enhanced flows of >~1000m/s, but not so well for slower ones. By considering the EISCAT N(h) profiles, we derive the effective aspect angle and effective altitude of backscatter, and use this information for application of the OOFA technique. We demonstrate that the OOFA predictions for the base event are superior over the IAA predictions and thus, we confirm that OOFA predicts the electron velocities reasonably well in the evening sector, in addition to the morning sector, as concluded by Uspensky et al. (2003). To check how "robust" the OOFA model is and how successful it is for convection estimates without the EISCAT support, we analysed three additional evening events and one additional morning event for which information on N(h) profiles was intentionally ignored. By accepting the mean STARE/EISCAT velocity ratio of 0.55 and the mean azimuth rotation of 9° (derived for the basic event), we show that the OOFA performs reasonably well for these additional events.

Key words. Ionosphere (ionospheric irregularities, plasma waves and instabilities, auroral ionosphere)

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