The Effect of Atomic Explosions on the Ionosphere
AIR FORCE SYSTEMS COMMAND WRIGHT-PATTERSON AFB OH FOREIGN TECHNOLOGY DIVISION
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Results taken from the World Data Center were used to investigate ionospheric disturbances of non-solar origin during the 1958 nuclear tests over the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans. It was found that the explosion set off on August 1, 1958, had an appreciable effect on the ionosphere. It gave rise to an increase in the absorption in the lower ionosphere, a reduction in the ionization in the F layer, and a considerable variation in its height. Ionospheric effects were detected at distances up to about 6000 km from the epicenter. The effects of the explosion of August 12, 1958, were investigated in a similar way. At a distance of 1500 km from the epicenter there was a considerable increase in the absorption by the F2 layer 6 hours after the explosion. An initial reduction in the effective height of the F layer was followed by a rise above the normal level. At 4500 km there was also an initial reduction and a final rise in the effective height. At 6200 km, there was a tendency to a wave-like change in the effective height. At 7200 km the effective height increased up to 350 km, but no effects were observed in the critical frequencies.
- Atmospheric Physics