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Time Variability of the ionspheric electric field: solar wind driving and atmospheric feedback

Project: Funded ProjectResearch

1/12/16 → …

This grant supports a programme of NERC-funded research to provide a state-of-the-art ionospheric electric field model that includes, for the first time, the effects of time-variability and atmospheric feedback. Such effects are missing from existing models, yet are crucial to a complete understanding of upper atmospheric dynamics. Such developments are required, for example, by the Met Office's weather and climate prediction models.

Specifically, our objectives are:

1. to determine the significance, and quantify the extent, of atmospheric feedback, i.e. coupling between the ionised and neutral atmosphere, in modulating the ionospheric electric field

2. to determine characteristic timescales, and associated morphology of the ionospheric electric field, that is driven by the interaction of the solar wind and magnetosphere with the ionosphere

3. to incorporate the findings from 1 and 2 into a new empirical model of the ionospheric electric field

4. to implement the new model in the Met Office's unified atmospheric model