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Title: Ionospheric acoustic and gravity wave activity above low-latitude thunderstorms

Abstract

In this report, we study the correlation between thunderstorm activity and ionospheric gravity and acoustic waves in the low-latitude ionosphere. We use ionospheric total electron content (TEC) measurements from the Low Latitude Ionospheric Sensor Network (LISN) and lightning measurements from the World- Wide Lightning Location Network (WWLLN). We find that ionospheric acoustic waves show a strong diurnal pattern in summer, peaking in the pre-midnight time period. However, the peak magnitude does not correspond to thunderstorm area, and the peak time is significantly after the peak in thunderstorm activity. Wintertime acoustic wave activity has no discernable pattern in these data. The coverage area of ionospheric gravity waves in the summer was found to increase with increasing thunderstorm activity. Wintertime gravity wave activity has an observable diurnal pattern unrelated to thunderstorm activity. These findings show that while thunderstorms are not the only, or dominant source of ionospheric perturbations at low-latitudes, they do have an observable effect on gravity wave activity and could be influential in acoustic wave activity.

Authors:
 [1]
  1. Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States)
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE
OSTI Identifier:
1341848
Report Number(s):
LA-UR-17-20653
DOE Contract Number:
AC52-06NA25396
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
58 GEOSCIENCES; Earth Sciences; ionosphere; thunderstorms

Citation Formats

Lay, Erin Hoffmann. Ionospheric acoustic and gravity wave activity above low-latitude thunderstorms. United States: N. p., 2017. Web. doi:10.2172/1341848.
Lay, Erin Hoffmann. Ionospheric acoustic and gravity wave activity above low-latitude thunderstorms. United States. doi:10.2172/1341848.
Lay, Erin Hoffmann. Mon . "Ionospheric acoustic and gravity wave activity above low-latitude thunderstorms". United States. doi:10.2172/1341848. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1341848.
@article{osti_1341848,
title = {Ionospheric acoustic and gravity wave activity above low-latitude thunderstorms},
author = {Lay, Erin Hoffmann},
abstractNote = {In this report, we study the correlation between thunderstorm activity and ionospheric gravity and acoustic waves in the low-latitude ionosphere. We use ionospheric total electron content (TEC) measurements from the Low Latitude Ionospheric Sensor Network (LISN) and lightning measurements from the World- Wide Lightning Location Network (WWLLN). We find that ionospheric acoustic waves show a strong diurnal pattern in summer, peaking in the pre-midnight time period. However, the peak magnitude does not correspond to thunderstorm area, and the peak time is significantly after the peak in thunderstorm activity. Wintertime acoustic wave activity has no discernable pattern in these data. The coverage area of ionospheric gravity waves in the summer was found to increase with increasing thunderstorm activity. Wintertime gravity wave activity has an observable diurnal pattern unrelated to thunderstorm activity. These findings show that while thunderstorms are not the only, or dominant source of ionospheric perturbations at low-latitudes, they do have an observable effect on gravity wave activity and could be influential in acoustic wave activity.},
doi = {10.2172/1341848},
journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = {Mon Jan 30 00:00:00 EST 2017},
month = {Mon Jan 30 00:00:00 EST 2017}
}

Technical Report:

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  • Ionospheric irregularities due to plasma bubbles, scintillation, and acoustic/gravity waves are studied in the low-latitude ionosphere in relation to thunderstorm activity. Ionospheric total electron content (TEC) measurements from the Low Latitude Ionospheric Sensor Network (LISN) and lightning measurements from the World-Wide Lightning Location Network (WWLLN) are compared during two summer months and two winter months in 2013. Large amplitude fluctuations in TEC are found to have a strongly-peaked diurnal pattern in the late evening and nighttime summer ionosphere. The maximum magnitude and coverage area of these fluctuations increases as thunderstorm area increases. Summertime mid-amplitude fluctuations do not exhibit the samemore » diurnal variation, but do increase in magnitude and coverage area as thunderstorm area increases. Wintertime ionospheric fluctuations do not appear to be related to thunderstorm activity. Lastly, these findings show that thunderstorms have an observable effect on magnitude and coverage area of ionospheric fluctuations.« less
  • Acoustic waves with periods of 2 - 4 minutes and gravity waves with periods of 6 - 16 minutes have been detected at ionospheric heights (250-350 km) using GPS Total Electron Content (TEC) measurements. The area disturbed by these waves and the wave amplitudes have been associated with underlying thunderstorm activity. A statistical study comparing NEXRAD radar thunderstorm measurements with ionospheric acoustic and gravity waves in the mid-latitude U.S. Great Plains region was performed for the time period of May - July 2005. An increase of ionospheric acoustic wave disturbed area and amplitude is primarily associated with large thunderstorms (mesoscalemore » convective systems). Ionospheric gravity wave disturbed area and amplitude scale with thunderstorm activity, with even small storms (i.e. individual storm cells) producing an increase of gravity waves.« less
  • Acoustic waves with periods of 2 - 4 minutes and gravity waves with periods of 6 - 16 minutes have been detected at ionospheric heights (250-350 km) using GPS Total Electron Content (TEC) measurements. The area disturbed by these waves and the wave amplitudes have been associated with underlying thunderstorm activity. A statistical study comparing NEXRAD radar thunderstorm measurements with ionospheric acoustic and gravity waves in the mid-latitude U.S. Great Plains region was performed for the time period of May - July 2005. An increase of ionospheric acoustic wave disturbed area and amplitude is primarily associated with large thunderstorms (mesoscalemore » convective systems). Ionospheric gravity wave disturbed area and amplitude scale with thunderstorm activity, with even small storms (i.e. individual storm cells) producing an increase of gravity waves.« less