Letter | Published:

Group and Phase Velocities of a Travelling Disturbance in the F Region of the Ionosphere

Naturevolume 191page157 (1961) | Download Citation



A PUZZLING feature of the reported association1 between travelling disturbances in the F region and the occurrence of sporadic E is that travelling disturbances move with a velocity of about 10 km./min. (ref. 2) whereas sporadic E patches have only about half this velocity3. However, the travelling disturbance velocity was measured using widely spaced stations ( 1,000 km.) whereas that of the sporadic E patches was found using relatively close stations ( 30 km.). Therefore whereas it is the group velocity of the travelling disturbances which has been measured, the sporadic E patches may be associated with a particular phase of the isoionic contours in the travelling disturbance and may thus appear to move with the phase velocity of the travelling disturbances.

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  1. 1

    Heisler, L. H., and Whitehead, J. D., J. Geophys. Res., 65, 2767 (1960).

  2. 2

    Heisler, L. H., Austral. J. Phys., 11, 79 (1958).

  3. 3

    Munro, G. H., and Heisler, L. H., Austral J. Phys., 9, 359 (1956).

  4. 4

    Bowman, G. G., Planet. Space Sci., 2, 133 (1960).

  5. 5

    Gusev, V. D., Mirkotan, S. F., Berezin, I. B., and Kiyanovsky, M. P., Some Ionospheric Results obtained during the I.G.Y., edit. by Benyon, W. J. G., 304 (Elsevier Pub. Co., 1960).

  6. 6

    McNicol, R. W. E., Webster, H. C., and Bowman, G. G., Austral. J. Phys., 9, 247 (1956).

  7. 7

    Munro, G. H., Austral. J. Phys., 11, 91 (1958).

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    Hines, C. O., Canad. J. Phys., 38, 1441 (1960).

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  1. Radio Research Board, School of Electrical Engineering, University of Sydney

    • L. H. HEISLER
    •  & J. D. WHITEHEAD


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