Radar Studies of High-Latitude Ionospheric Flows [and Discussion]
Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society A: Mathematical, Physical and Engineering Sciences
Physics D e p a r t m e n t , University of L e i c e s t e r , University , Leicester LEX 7 U.K. Strong interactions occur between the solar wind and the Earth's magnetic field which result in the convection of ionospheric plasma over the polar cap regions. This generally forms a two-cell pattern with westward and eastward flows in the pre-and post-midnight sectors respectively. The flow pattern is sensitive to the flux of the solar wind and the direction of the interplanetary magnetic field.
... ry magnetic field. Observations of the flow pattern are thus of considerable value in the interpretation of the magneto sphere-ionosphere coupling processes and in identifying the influence of the solar wind on the Earth's environment. The plasma convection can be observed by ground-based coherent and incoherent scatter radars and the flow vectors determined. Measurements for a range of flow conditions are presented. These are interpreted in terms of the interactions of the solar wind with the magnetosphere and the resulting electric fields which drive the plasma flows in the ionosphere. [ 71 ]