A case study of polar cap sporadic-E layer associated with TEC variations

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


  • Yong Wang
  • P. Thayyil Jayachandran
  • Anthony M. McCaffrey
  • Qinghe Zhang
  • Shiva David
  • Richard Chadwick

Colleges, School and Institutes

External organisations

  • University of New Brunswick
  • Shandong University


The Sporadic-E (Es) layer is an often-observed phenomenon at high latitudes; however, our understanding of the polar cap Es layer is severely limited due to the scarce number of measurements. Here, the first comprehensive study of the polar cap Es layer associated with Global Positioning System (GPS) Total Electron Content (TEC) variations and scintillations is presented with multiple measurements at Resolute, Canada (Canadian Advanced Digital Ionosonde (CADI), Northward-looking face of Resolute Incoherent-Scatter Radar (RISR-N), and GPS receiver). According to the joint observations, the polar cap Es layer is a thin patch structure with variously high electron density, which gradually develops into the lower E region (~100 km) and horizontally extends >200 km. Moreover, the TEC variations produced by the polar cap Es layer are pulse-like enhancements with a general amplitude of ~0.5 TECu and are followed by smaller but rapid TEC perturbations. Furthermore, the possible scintillation effects likely associated with the polar cap Es layer are also discussed. As a consequence, the results widely expand our understanding on the polar cap Es layer, in particular on TEC variations.


Original languageEnglish
Article number1324
Number of pages14
JournalRemote Sensing
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 31 Mar 2021


  • polar cap, the sporadic-E layer, Resolute Bay, spatial structures, TEC variations, scintillations