Multi-wavelength coordinated observations of ionospheric irregularity structures from an anomaly crest location during unusual solar minimum of the 24th cycle


The present paper reports coordinated ionospheric irregularity measurements at optical as well as GPS wavelengths. Optical measurements were obtained from Tiny Ionospheric Photometer (TIP) sensors installed onboard the Constellation Observing System for Meteorology, Ionosphere, and Climate (COSMIC) satellites. GPS radio signals were obtained from a dual frequency GPS receiver operational at Calcutta (22.58\textdegreeN, 88.38\textdegreeE geographic; geomagnetic dip: 32.96\textdegree; 13.00\textdegreeN, 161.63\textdegreeE geomagnetic) under the SCIntillation Network Decision Aid (SCINDA) program. Calcutta is located near the northern crest of Equatorial Ionization Anomaly (EIA) in the Indian longitude sector. The observations were conducted during the unusually low and prolonged solar minima period of 2008\textendash2010. During this period, four cases of post-sunset GPS scintillation were observed from Calcutta. Among those cases, simultaneous fluctuations in GPS Carrier-to-Noise ratios (C/No) and measured radiances from TIP over a common ionospheric volume were observed only on February 2, 2008 and September 25, 2008. Fluctuations observed in measured radiances (maximum 0.95 Rayleigh) from TIP due to ionospheric irregularities were found to correspond well with C/N0 fluctuations on the GPS links observed from Calcutta, such effects being noted even during late evening hours of 21:00\textendash22:00 LT from locations around 40\textdegree magnetic dip. These measurements indicate the existence of electron density irregularities of scale sizes varying over several decades from 135.6\ nm to 300\textendash400\ m well beyond the northern crest of the EIA in the Indian longitude sector during late evening hours even in the unusually low solar activity conditions.

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Advances in Space Research
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