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Advances in Space Research

Year: 2010  |  Volume: 46  |  Issue: 8  |  Page No.: 1032 - 1038

Parameterized Regional Ionospheric Model and a comparison of its results with experimental data and IRI representations

J.R. Souza, C.G.M. Brum, M.A. Abdu, I.S. Batista, W.D. Asevedo Jr., G.J. Bailey and J.A. Bittencourt


We describe a Parameterized Regional Ionospheric Model (PARIM) to calculate the spatial and temporal variations of the ionospheric electron density/plasma frequency over the Brazilian sector. The ionospheric plasma frequency values as calculated from an enhanced Sheffield University Plasmasphere–Ionosphere Model (SUPIM) were used to construct the model. PARIM is a time-independent 3D regional model (altitude, longitude/local time, latitude) used to reproduce SUPIM plasma frequencies for geomagnetic quiet condition, for any day of the year and for low to moderately high solar activity. The procedure to obtain the modeled representation uses finite Fourier series so that all plasma frequency dependencies can be represented by Fourier coefficients. PARIM presents very good results, except for the F region peak height (hmF2) near the geomagnetic equator during times of occurrence of the F3 layer. The plasma frequency calculated by IRI from E region to bottomside of the F region present latitudinal discontinuities during morning and evening times for both solar minimum and solar maximum conditions. Both the results of PARIM and the IRI for the E region peak density show excellent agreement with the observational values obtained during the conjugate point equatorial experiment (COPEX) campaign. The IRI representations significantly underestimate the foF2 and hmF2 compared to the observational results over the COPEX sites, mainly during the evening–nighttime period.

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