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Journal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics






American Geophysical Union

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Dynamics Explorer (DE) 2 electric field and particle data have been used to constrain the inputs of a time-dependent ionospheric model (TDIM) for a simulation of the ionosphere on November 22, 1981. The simulated densities have then been critically compared with the DE 2 electron density observations. This comparison uncovers a model-data disagreement in the morning sector trough, generally good agreement of the background density in the polar cap and evening sector trough, and a difficulty in modelling the observed polar F layer patches. From this comparison, the consequences of structure in the electric field and precipitation inputs can be seen. This is further highlighted during a substorm period for which DE 1 auroral images were available. Using these images, a revised dynamic particle precipitation pattern was used in the ionospheric model; the resulting densities were different from the original simulation. With this revised dynamic precipitation model, improved density agreement is obtained in the auroral/polar regions where the plasma convection is not stagnant. However, the dynamic study also reveals a difficulty of matching dynamic auroral patterns with static empirical convection patterns. In this case, the matching of the models produced intense auroral precipitation in a stagnation region, which, in turn, led to exceedingly large TDIM densities.


Originally published by the American Geophysical Union. Abstract available online through the Journal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics.

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