Using the local ensemble transform Kalman filter for upper atmospheric modelling

Sean Elvidge, Matthew Angling

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The Advanced Ensemble electron density (Ne) Assimilation System (AENeAS) is a new data assimilation model of the ionosphere/thermosphere. The background model is provided by the Thermosphere Ionosphere Electrodynamics General Circulation Model (TIE-GCM) and the assimilation uses the local ensemble transform Kalman filter (LETKF). An outline derivation of the LETKF is provided and the equations are presented in a form analogous to the classic Kalman filter. An enhancement to the efficient LETKF implementation to reduce computational cost is also described. In a 3 day test in June 2017, AENeAS exhibits a total electron content (TEC) RMS error of 2.1 TECU compared with 5.5 TECU for NeQuick and 6.8 for TIE-GCM (with an NeQuick topside).
Original languageEnglish
Article numberA30
JournalJournal of Space Weather and Space Climate
Issue number2019
Publication statusPublished - 12 Aug 2019


  • data assimilation
  • ensemble Kalman filter
  • ionosphere
  • thermosphere


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