Global Ionosphere Radio Observatory

Thursday, 18 December 2014
Bodo W Reinisch1,2, Ivan A Galkin2 and Xueqin A Huang1,2, (1)Lowell Digisonde International, Lowell, MA, United States, (2)Univ Massachusetts Lowell, Lowell, MA, United States
The Global Ionosphere Radio Observatory (GIRO) comprises a network of ground-based high-frequency vertical sounding sensors, ionosondes, with instrument installations in 27 countries and a central Lowell GIRO Data Center (LGDC) for data acquisition and assimilation, including 46 real-time data streams as of August 2014. The LGDC implemented a suite of technologies for post-processing, modeling, analysis, and dissemination of the acquired and derived data products, including:

(1) IRI-based Real-time Assimilative Model, “IRTAM”, that builds and publishes every 15-minutes an updated “global weather” map of the peak density and height in the ionosphere, as well as a map of deviations from the classic IRI climate;

(2) Global Assimilative Model of Bottomside Ionosphere Timelines (GAMBIT) Database and Explorer holding 15 years worth of IRTAM computed maps at 15 minute cadence;.

(3) 17+ million ionograms and matching ionogram-derived records of URSI-standard ionospheric characteristics and vertical profiles of electron density;

(4) 10+ million records of the Doppler Skymaps showing spatial distributions over the GIRO locations and plasma drifts;

(5) Data and software for Traveling Ionospheric Disturbance (TID) diagnostics; and

(6) HR2006 ray tracing software mated to the “realistic” IRTAM ionosphere.

In cooperation with the URSI Ionosonde Network Advisory Group (INAG), the LGDC promotes cooperative agreements with the ionosonde observatories of the world to accept and process real-time data of HF radio monitoring of the ionosphere, and to promote a variety of investigations that benefit from the global-scale, prompt, detailed, and accurate descriptions of the ionospheric variability.