SuperDARN backscatter during intense geomagnetic storms

J. L. Currie, C. L. Waters, F. W. Menk, M. D. Sciffer, W. A. Bristow

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


It is often stated that high-frequency radars experience a loss of backscatter during geomagnetic storm events. The occurrence of backscatter during 25 intense geomagnetic storms was examined using data from the Bruny Island and Kodiak radars and a superposed epoch analysis. It was found that while a reduction of backscatter occurred in the middle to far ranges, there was an increase in the amount of backscatter from close range following storm onset. Ray tracing showed that an enhanced charge density in the E region can reduce the chance of F region and increase the chance of E region backscatter. It was also shown that reduction in backscatter cannot be explained by D region absorption. Using a normalized SYM-H value, percentage time through recovery phase can be estimated during storm progression which allows a prediction of backscatter return in real time that accounts for varying storm recovery phase duration.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)814-825
Number of pages12
JournalRadio Science
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 1 2016

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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