F-region plasma structures in the polar cap

Who (supervisor): Gareth Perry (J.P. St. Maurice)
Venue: PEGASUS Student Summer Seminar, July 12, 2012.

The spatial and temporal evolution of an F-region plasma patch, detected over Resolute Bay, has been studied with a suite of instruments. For this case study, the Resolute Incoherent Scatter Radar – North (RISR-N) is used to construct a three-dimensional image of the plasma parameters of the patch. Three Super Dual Auroral Radar Network (SuperDARN) systems along with optical imagers at Resolute Bay and Qaanaaq, Greenland are used to provide a multi-instrument overview of the both the patch and the high latitude F region during the event. SuperDARN was used to track the patch for nearly an hour, from the cusp region to Resolute Bay. During a 10 minute period, the patch was detected and identified in the RISR-N, Optical Mesosphere Thermosphere Imagers (OMTI) and SuperDARN instruments, yielding a unique opportunity to study the patch with multiple instruments. Of the more interesting findings of this study, one indicates significant density fluctuations within the patch, without any clear evidence for an external driver such as precipitation. The techniques and results of this case study will be described in this presentation, along with the insight which they provide to patch research. Also, a brief introduction to space physics will be given.

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