Monitoring, tracking and forecasting ionospheric perturbations using GNSS techniques
German Aerospace Center, Institute of Communications and Navigation, Neustrelitz, Germany
2 IEEA, Paris, Courbevoie, France
3 Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia, Roma, Italy
4 Universitat Politecnica de Catalunya, Res. group of Astronomy and Geomatics, Barcelona, Spain
5 Norwegian Mapping Authority, Geodetic Institute, Hønefoss, Norway
6 Space Research Center PAS, Warsaw, Poland
7 University of Liege, Unit of Geomatics – Geodesy and GNSS, Belgium
* corresponding author: e-mail: Norbert.Jakowski@dlr.de
Accepted: 23 November 2012
The paper reviews the current state of GNSS-based detection, monitoring and forecasting of ionospheric perturbations in Europe in relation to the COST action ES0803 “Developing Space Weather Products and Services in Europe”. Space weather research and related ionospheric studies require broad international collaboration in sharing databases, developing analysis software and models and providing services. Reviewed is the European GNSS data basis including ionospheric services providing derived data products such as the Total Electron Content (TEC) and radio scintillation indices. Fundamental ionospheric perturbation phenomena covering quite different scales in time and space are discussed in the light of recent achievements in GNSS-based ionospheric monitoring. Thus, large-scale perturbation processes characterized by moving ionization fronts, wave-like travelling ionospheric disturbances and finally small-scale irregularities causing radio scintillations are considered. Whereas ground and space-based GNSS monitoring techniques are well developed, forecasting of ionospheric perturbations needs much more work to become attractive for users who might be interested in condensed information on the perturbation degree of the ionosphere by robust indices. Finally, we have briefly presented a few samples illustrating the space weather impact on GNSS applications thus encouraging the scientific community to enhance space weather research in upcoming years.
Key words: ionosphere / space weather / total electron content / disturbances / positioning system
© N. Jakowski et al., Published by EDP Sciences 2012
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.