Upper Hybrid Effects in Artificial Ionization

Wednesday, 17 December 2014: 10:35 AM
Konstantinos Papadopoulos, University of Maryland College Park, Physics and Astronomy, College Park, MD, United States and Bengt Erik Eliasson, University of Strathclyde, Glasgow, United Kingdom
A most fascinating result of recent ionospheric experiments has been the discovery of artificial ionization by Pedersen et al. (GRL, 37, L02106, 2010). The Artificial Ionospheric Layers (AIL) were the result of F-region O-mode HF irradiation using the HAARP ionospheric heater operating at 3.6 MW power. As demonstrated by Eliasson et al. (JGR, 117, A10321, 2012) the physics controlling the observed phenomenon and its threshold can be summarized as: “ Collisional ionization due to high energy (~ 20 eV) electron tails generated by the interaction of strong Langmuir turbulence with plasma heated at the upper hybrid resonance and transported at the reflection height”. The objective of the current presentation is to explore the role of the upper hybrid heating in the formation of AIL and its implications to future experiments involving HF heaters operating in middle and equatorial latitudes.