Climatology Analysis of the Daytime Topside Ionospheric Diffusive O+ Flux Based on Incoherent Scatter Radar Observations at Millstone Hill

Yihui Cai, Wenbin Wang, Shun Rong Zhang, Xinan Yue, Zhipeng Ren, Huixin Liu

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6 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This paper reports the characteristics of the topside ionospheric O+ diffusive flux ((Formula presented.)) during both geomagnetically quiet (0 ≤ Kp ≤ 2) and moderate (2 < Kp ≤ 4) times using incoherent scatter radar observations at Millstone Hill (42.6°N, 288.5°E) for solar minimum from 1970 to 2018. (Formula presented.) partially characterizes plasma mass exchange between the upper and lower part of the topside ionosphere through diffusion and sometimes serves as upper boundary conditions for ionosphere-thermosphere models. The altitude where the flux sign changes (mainly during daytime) is termed the transition height and the time when the flux sign changes (mainly at dawn and dusk) is termed the transition time. At quiet times, the daytime transition height is ∼100 km above the (Formula presented.) peak height (hmF2) in summer, and it is about 50 km above hmF2 in other seasons; the transition time is before 18 solar local time (SLT) in spring and winter, but after 18 SLT in summer and autumn. The daytime average upward (Formula presented.) above the transition height shows a significant seasonal variation with a minimum of (Formula presented.) in summer and a maximum of (Formula presented.) in autumn. Under geomagnetically moderate conditions, the transition height increases by ∼20 km in spring, winter, and autumn, but moves up by about 20–50 km in summer. The transition time occurs later by ∼1 hr in summer but ∼1 hr earlier in other seasons. The mean upward (Formula presented.) peaks in summer and minimizes in spring.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere2021JA029222
JournalJournal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics
Volume126
Issue number10
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2021

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Space and Planetary Science
  • Geophysics

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