Articles | Volume 29, issue 8
12 Aug 2011
 | 12 Aug 2011

Observations of AGW/TID propagation across the polar cap: a case study

H. T. Cai, F. Yin, S. Y. Ma, and I. W. McCrea

Abstract. In this paper, we present observational evidence for the trans-polar propagation of large-scale Traveling Ionospheric Disturbances (TIDs) from their nightside source region to the dayside. On 13 February 2001, the 32 m dish of EISCAT Svalbard Radar (ESR) was directing toward the geomagnetic pole at low elevation (30°) during the interval 06:00–12:00 UT (MLT ≈ UT + 3 h), providing an excellent opportunity to monitor the ionosphere F-region over the polar cap. The TIDs were first detected by the ESR over the dayside north polar cap, propagating equatorward, and were subsequently seen by the mainland UHF radar at auroral latitudes around geomagnetic local noon. The propagation properties of the observed ionization waves suggest the presence of a moderately large-scale TIDs, propagating across the northern polar cap from the night-time auroral source during substorm conditions. Our results agree with the theoretical simulations by Balthazor and Moffett (1999) in which poleward-propagating large-scale traveling atmospheric disturbances were found to be self-consistently driven by enhancements in auroral heating.