Stratification observed by the in situ plasma density measurements from the Swarm satellites

Wang, Xiuying; Cheng, Wanli; Zhou, Zihan; Yang, Dehe; Cui, Jing; Guo, Feng

The stratification phenomenon is investigated using the simultaneous in situ plasma density measurements obtained by the Swarm satellites orbiting at different altitudes above the F2 peak. For the first time, the continuous distribution morphology and the exact locations are obtained for the nighttime stratification, which show that the stratification events are centered at the EIA (equatorial ionization anomaly) trough and extend towards the two EIA crests, with the most significant part being located at the EIA trough. Another new discovery is the stratification in southern mid-latitudes; stratification events in this region are located on a local plasma peak sandwiched by two lower density strips covering all the longitudes. The formation mechanism of the stratification for the two latitudinal regions is discussed, but the stratification mechanism in southern mid-latitudes remains an unsolved problem.

Highlights. This paper addresses the following:

  • d1e146first application of in situ plasma densities for the direct analysis of the stratification in F2 layer,

  • d1e150refined features of the exact location and continuous morphology for the stratification phenomenon,

  • d1e154a new discovery of stratification covering all longitudes in southern mid-latitudes.



Wang, Xiuying / Cheng, Wanli / Zhou, Zihan / et al: Stratification observed by the in situ plasma density measurements from the Swarm satellites. 2020. Copernicus Publications.


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