Seasonal influence on polar cap patches in the high-latitude nightside ionosphere

Alan Wood*, SE Pryse

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The influence of the season on the patch-to-background density ratio of polar cap patches in the nightside ionosphere was observed above northern Scandinavia around solar maximum (1999–2001). This is the first study of the seasonal effect in the nightside polar ionosphere. The observations were conducted by the European Incoherent Scatter Svalbard Radar under conditions favorable for patches based on the high-latitude plasma convection pattern, the interplanetary magnetic field, and an absence of in situ precipitation. Patch-to-background ratios of up to 9.4 ± 2.9 were observed between midwinter and equinox, with values of up to 1.9 ± 0.2 in summer. As the patch-to-background ratios in summer were
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics
Issue numberA7
Publication statusPublished - 2010


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