Effects of Different Convection Models upon the High-Latitude Ionosphere,
UTAH STATE UNIV LOGAN CENTER FOR ATMOSPHERIC AND SPACE SCIENCES
Pagination or Media Count:
It is well known that convection electric fields have an important effect on the ionosphere at high latitudes and that a quantitative understanding of their effect requires a knowledge of plasma convection over the entire high latitude region. Two empirical models of plasma convection that have been proposed for use in studying the ionosphere are the Volland and Heelis models. Both of these models provide a similar description of two celled ionospheric convection, but they differ in several ways, in particular, in the manner in which plasma flows over the central polar cap and near the polar cap boundary. Ot obtain a better understanding of the way in which these two models affect the ionosphere, two separate runs of our high latitude, time dependent ionospheric model were made, with only the convection models distinguishing the two runs. it was found that the two models were made, with only the convection models distinguishing the two runs. It was found that the two models lead to differences in the ionosphere but often the differences are subtle and are swamped by universal time effects. The most notable differences are in predictions of the height of the F2 peak and in the ion temperature, particularly along the evening polar cap boundary and in the cusp region. For these two parameters, the differences caused by the two different convection models dominate the universal time effects. One question that arises is whether one could examine measurements of plasma density and temperature and determine which of the two convection models most accurately represents actual ionospheric convection.
- Atmospheric Physics