Estimation of Electron Density profile Using the Propagation Characteristics of Radio Waves by S-520-29 Sounding Rocket
Abstract:S-520-29 sounding rocket experiment was carried out at Uchinoura Space Center (USC) at 19:10 JST on 17 August, 2014. The purpose of this sounding rocket experiments is observation of sporadic E layer that appears in the lower ionosphere at near 100km. Three methods were used in order to observe the sporadic E layer. The first method is an optical method that observe the light of metal ion emitted by the resonance scattering in sporadic E layer using the imager. The second method is observation of characteristic of radio wave propagation that the LF/MF band radio waves transmitted from the ground. The third method is measuring the electron density in the vicinity of sounding rocket using the fast Langmuir probe and the impedance probe. We analyze the propagation characteristics of radio wave in sporadic E layer appeared from the results of the second method observation.
This rocket was equipped with LF/MF band radio receiver for observe the LF/MF band radio waves in rocket flight. Antenna of LF/MF band radio receiver is composed of three axis loop antenna. LF/MF band radio receiver receives three radio waves of 873kHz (JOGB), 666kHz (JOBK), 60kHz (JJY) from the ground. 873kHz and 60kHz radio waves are transmitting from north side, and 666kHz radio waves are transmitting from the east side to the trajectory of the rocket. In the sounding rocket experiment, LF/MF band radio receiver was working properly. We have completed the observation of radio wave intensity. We analyze the observation results using a Doppler shift calculations by frequency analysis. Radio waves received by the sounding rocket include the influences of Doppler shift by polarization and the direction of rocket spin and the magnetic field of the Earth. So received radio waves that are separate into characteristics waves using frequency analysis. Then we calculate the Doppler shift from the separated data. As a result, 873kHz, 666kHz radio waves are reflected by the ionosphere. 60kHz wave was able to propagate in ionosphere because wavelength of 60kHz was longer than the thickness of the sporadic E layer. In this study, we explain the result of LF/MF band radio receiver observations and the electron density of the ionosphere using frequency analysis by S-520-29 sounding rocket experiment.