SCIENTIFIC IMPACTS OF PHENOMENA-ORIENTED RESEARCH SPONSORED BY AFOSR
STANFORD RESEARCH INST MENLO PARK CA
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This exploratory study has the purpose of developing and demonstrating methods of evaluating the scientific impacts of pioneering phenomena-oriented research sponsored by a mission-oriented agency. Whistlers are audio-frequency radio signals resulting from the longitudinal propagation of sferics in the exosphere. Their general characteristics were fairly well understood prior to 1960 but work sponsored by AFOSR in that year contributed materially positive identification of their sources, understanding of the laws of their propagation, and elicitation of the information they yield about electron and proton concentrations at altitudes of up to 4 earth radii. As verified by other means, notably radio satellites, this information plays a pivotal role in understanding the exosphere, the radiation belts, the magnetosphere, and the limitations to earth-based radiolocation.
- Atmospheric Physics
- Radio Communications