The role of total wind in the vertical dynamics of ions in the E-region at high latitudes
- 1Department of Physics, University “Dunarea de Jos" of Galati, Romania
- 2Faculty of Physics, University “Al. I Cuza" Iasi, Romania
Abstract. A seasonally dependent total neutral wind model obtained from experimental data is used to evaluate the diurnal variation of the vertical ion velocity in the E-region at a high-latitude location (Tromsø), for each season, in the presence of an electric field with a typical diurnal variation for quiet auroral days. The diurnal variation and spatial locations of the vertical convergence of ions are analyzed and the effect of the total wind on the occurrence of sporadic E-layers is inferred. The results show that the structure of the wind is an important factor in controlling the vertical velocities of ions, favoring or hindering the sporadic E-layer formation. The ion convergence conditions are improved when the permanent wind is removed, which suggests that sporadic E-layers occur when the mean wind has small values, thus allowing the electric field and/or the semidiurnal tide to control the ion dynamics. We conclude that for quiet days the formation of the sporadic layers is initiated by the electric field, while their evolution and dynamics is controlled by the wind. We also find that the seasonal variation of the Es layers cannot be related to the seasonally dependent wind shear. Although we focus on sporadic E-layers, our results can be used in the analysis of other processes involving the vertical dynamics of ions in the E-region at high latitudes.