Comparison between Low and High Latitude Lightning VLF Wave Propagation Using WWLLN and Van Allen Probes

Thursday, 18 December 2014
Hao Zheng1, Robert H Holzworth II1, James B Brundell2, John R Wygant3, George B Hospodarsky4, Forrest Mozer5, Abram R Jacobson1 and John W Bonnell5, (1)University of Washington Seattle Campus, Seattle, WA, United States, (2)ULTRA MSK, Dunedin, New Zealand, (3)University of Minnesota Twin Cities, Minneapolis, MN, United States, (4)Univ Iowa, Iowa City, IA, United States, (5)University of California Berkeley, Berkeley, CA, United States
Lightning produces strong broadband radio waves, called "sferics", which propagate in the Earth-ionosphere waveguide and are detected thousands of kilometers away from their source. Global real-time detection of lightning strokes including their time, location and energy, is conducted with the World Wide Lightning Location Network (WWLLN). In the ionosphere, these sferics couple into very low frequency (VLF) whistler waves which propagate obliquely to the Earth's magnetic field. Possible one-to-one coincidence between lightning and VLF whistler wave is already found by the conjunction work between WWLLN and Van Allen Probes (formerly known as the Radiation Belt Storm Probes (RBSP)). The previous global study showed a good match between WWLLN sferics and RBSP VLF whistlers at low L shell region (L < 3). In this summer, we started obtaining high sampling mode data from RBSP near the apogee. Initial results indicate many one-to-one coincidences at high L shell region (L>4). The whistlers observed at high L shell region are often nose whistlers. In our work, we will show the statistics results between WWLLN sferics and RBSP VLF whistlers at high L shell region. This talk will also explore the difference between low and high latitude lightning VLF wave propagation.