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Annales Geophysicae An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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Volume 24, issue 1
Ann. Geophys., 24, 115–128, 2006
https://doi.org/10.5194/angeo-24-115-2006
© Author(s) 2006. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
Ann. Geophys., 24, 115–128, 2006
https://doi.org/10.5194/angeo-24-115-2006
© Author(s) 2006. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.

  07 Mar 2006

07 Mar 2006

Spectral width of SuperDARN echoes: measurement, use and physical interpretation

P. V. Ponomarenko1 and C. L. Waters1,2 P. V. Ponomarenko and C. L. Waters
  • 1University of Newcastle, Callaghan, New South Wales, Australia
  • 2CRC for Satellite Systems, Australia

Abstract. The Doppler velocity and spectral width are two important parameters derived from coherent scatter radar systems. The Super Dual Auroral Radar Network (SuperDARN) is capable of monitoring most of the high latitude region where different boundaries of the magnetosphere map to the ionosphere. In the past, the spectral width, calculated from SuperDARN data, has been used to identify the ionosphere footprints of various magnetosphere boundaries. In this paper we examine the way the spectral width is presently estimated from the radar data and describe several recommendations for improving the algorithm. Using the improved algorithm, we show that typical spectral width values reported in the literature are most probably overestimated. The physical interpretation of the cause of various magnitudes of the spectral width is explored in terms of the diffusion and dynamics of ionospheric plasma irregularities.

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