Applications for High Accuracy Digital Ionosonde Data,
NAVAL OCEAN SYSTEMS CENTER SAN DIEGO CA
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The new technology used in modern digital ionosondes permits the measurement of traditional virtual heights and amplitude of echoes and new radio phase of echoes ionospheric data with very high precision. Consequently, higher accuracy for standard ionospheric parameters can be achieved and new types of parameters can be obtained using new processing methods. Details of such data analysis programs may depend on the type of digital ionosonde used, however, the basic physical principles involved are the same. For example, there is no doubt that the change of the radio phase with time is proportional to the Doppler frequency of the echo. In recent years much effort has gone into modeling of the ionosphere. Unfortunately the spatial and the temporal resolution of the most basic parameters of the data base for testing such models is inadequate. For example, it appears that in some areas e.g., Europe the spatial resolution of the F-layer maximum electron density may be sufficient, but this is not true for the height of the maximum and the half-thickness of the F-layer, since very few station computed electron density profiles from the recorded ionograms. In the following we will outline a new procedure for computing F-layer profile parameters. The process is simple and its routine application could significantly improve the data base. The accuracy limits of the resulting parameters will be discussed together with some other important ionospheric quantities observable with digital ionosondes.
- Atmospheric Physics