Space Weather Euro News Vol.6 Issue 1 (11-01-2002)

Table of Contents: 
1. SPENVIS upgrades and user workshop
2. International Reference Ionosphere. IRInfo No. 22
3. Job Announcement - Staff Physicist in Solar/Interplanetary Physics 
   at the NOAA Space Environment Center (SEC)
4. URSI General Assembly - Dead-line for abstract: 15 January 2002
5. Some ESA Tender Actions from ESA EMITS 

   \"/          *                                            SPACE WEATHER 
 = + =             ( >Q< -)-_ - _ ) -_                EURO NEWS 
    /"\      *                                                        S*W*E*N 
  Send all contributions to:

1. SPENVIS upgrades and user workshop
From: Daniel Heynderickx

The following upgrades have been made to SPENVIS

- bug fix to the orbit generator: for some combinations of input parameters,
  the right ascension of the ascending node was assigned a wrong value.

- bug fix to the solar cell damage equivalent fluence models (EQFRUX):
  when both trapped particle and solar proton models were run, and the
  solar proton fluences were zero, the trapped proton fluences were
  copied mistakenly copied into the solar proton fluences.

- bug fix to the plotting routine of the trapped proton anisotropy model:
  the colour scale did not always correspond exactly to the z-axis scale

- a new background help page on coronal holes has been added:

- the links pages have been updated:

A SPENVIS user workshop will be held at ESTEC, Noordwijk, The Netherlands,
in May or June 2002. If you would like to attend, please contact D.Heynderickx to indicate which
dates would be most convenient in that time period.
A preliminary schedule would be:

- day 1: presentations by invited experts on the state of the art
  on environment and effects models
- day 2: presentations by SPENVIS users demonstrating their usage of 
  the system
- day 3: round table discussion on future improvements and extensions 
  of the system

Workshop attendance will probably be free of charge.
A formal announcement will be made later this month.

D. Heynderickx
SPENVIS Project Manager

D. Heynderickx
Belgisch Instituut voor Ruimte-Aeronomie
Ringlaan 3
B-1180 Brussel

Tel.: +32-2-3730417
Fax: +32-2-3748423

2. International Reference Ionosphere. IRInfo No. 22
From: Dieter Bilitza

*** International Reference Ionosphere ***
                 ***IRInfo No. 22 ***
                      January 2, 2002


(1) Solar and Magnetic Indices Updated
(2) Correction of IRI Test Programs
(3) Report from 2001 IRI Workshop

(1) Solar and Magnetic Indices Updated

The solar and magnetic indices files for IRI were updated with the
most recent values. The ig_rz.dat file now contains the Global
Ionospheric indices (IG12) and the sunspot numbers Rz12 up to
December 2003 (predicted values are used from June 2001 onward).
Differences to earlier solar indices files are small. Please contact Dieter Bilitza
for details. The 3-hourly Ap values were updated to October 30, 2001.

(2) Correction of IRI Test Programs

A small error was corrected in the test programs iritest.for and
iritestne.for so that they now correctly list the Global Ionospheric
index (IG12) as one of their many output parameter (Ray Conkright,
NGDC, Boulder, Colorado).

(3) Report from the 2001 IRI Workshop

The 2001 IRI Workshop was held at the Instituto Nacional de Pesquisas
Espaciais in São José dos Campos, Brazil in the week from June 25 to
29. It was attend by about 60 scientists including representatives
from USA, Russia, India, Peru, South Africa, Japan, Spain, Argentina,
U.K., Czech Republic, Chile, and Brazil. The 75 papers were presented
in 8 oral sessions and in 1 poster session. The titles of the oral
sessions were: The Equatorial Anomaly Region, Total Electron Content
and Topside, Description of Ionospheric Variability, Modeling the Low
Latitude Ionosphere, Ion composition, Scintillation and Spread-F,
Representation of F Peak and Bottomside Parameters, New Data and
Model Inputs and Applications. The workshop opened with a welcome
address by the INPE Director, V.W.J.H. Kirchhoff and was followed by
an overview talk by D. Bilitza (USA) describing the new version of
the IRI model, IRI-2001. The meeting was well prepared and organized
thanks to the excellent efforts of the Local Organizers: J. H. A.
Sobral, M.A. Abdu, and I.S. Batista. Financial support was provided
by the Committee on Space Research (COSPAR), the International Union
of Radio Science (URSI), the International Center for Theoretical
Physics (ICTP), the Instituto Nacional de Pesquisas Espaciais/
Ministério da Ciência e Tecnologia (INPE/MCT), the Fundação de Amparo
à Pesquisa do Estado de São Paulo (FAPESP), the Sociedade Brasileira
de Geofísica (SBGf), and the Fundação Coordenação de Aperfeiçoamento
de Pessoal de Nível Superios (CAPES). The papers and posters from
this workshop will be considered for a special issue of Advances of
Space Research.

Electron Density: D and E Region

Two new D-region options have been introduced with IRI-2001 and now
await testing by the user community. The standard IRI D-region model
remains in effect as before. A few first comparisons have shown good
agreement between the three model options as pointed by Bilitza (USA)
in his IRI-2001 overview talk. Pulinets (Russia) pointed out the
existence of a large data base of absorption measurements in Russia
that could be of help in modeling long-term trends of D-region
densities. He will contact the responsible scientists. McKinnell
(South Africa) presented a Neural Network (NN) model for E region
parameters based on ionosonde data from Grahamstown, South Africa.

The E region in general is well represented by IRI. But some areas of
improvement remain: (1) The correct representation of the depth of
the nighttime E valley. Incoherent scatter measurements and
theoretical studies have shown that the current IRI E-valley is too
deep. (2) The enhanced E region ionization due to particle
precipitation at auroral latitudes. Bradley (U.K.) reviewed models
for sporadic-E as a starting point for the future inclusion of a
sporadic-E model in IRI.

Electron Density: F1 Region and F2 Bottomside

IRI-2001 provides considerably improved profiles in this region and
includes the F1 probability as a new parameter. These improvements
are a result of the annual IRI Task Force Activity that is organized
by Radicella (Italy) at the Abdus Salam International Center for
Theoretical Physics (ICTP) in Trieste, Italy. Presentations by
Reinisch (USA), Mosert (Argentina), Ezquer (Argentina), Adeniyi
(Nigeria; presented by Bilitza), and Mahajan (India) discussed these
efforts and pointed out areas for future improvements. The IRI group
strongly pursues and encourages the establishment of a data base of
F1 and bottomside parameters from a large number of globally
distributed ionosondes. Especially at high solar activities the
current IRI bottomside thickness parameter B0 underestimates
Jicamarca incoherent scatter data. The great potential of Jicamarca
incoherent scatter data for IRI modelling was reviewed by Chau
(Peru). Comparisons of Brazilian rocket data with IRI were presented
by Sobral (Brazil) and Muralikrishna (Brazil).

Electron Density: F2 Peak Parameters

With the 2001 version IRI now includes a model for the description of
storm effects.  The storm-time updating model of Fuller-Rowell et al.
(USA) describes the changes in F2 peak density in terms of the of the
3-hourly ap index (13 values prior to observation time). First
comparison with ionosonde and Total Electron Content (TEC) data were
presented by Radicella (Italy). The model predicts the observed
trends but the study also underlines the importance of the next step
in storm effects modeling, namely the description of the
storm-induced changes in the F2 peak height hmF2.

Another prominent feature still missing in the IRI hmF2 model, is the
characteristic peak shortly after sunset at equatorial latitudes.
With the introduction of the Scherliess-Fejer equatorial ion drift
model in IRI-2001, one could now try to include this feature by
exploiting the strong correlation between hmF2 and vertical ion drift
at the equator especially during nighttime. Obrou (Ivory Coast) and
Bilitza (USA) studied this correlation with ionosonde data from
Korhogo (Ivory Coast). Batista (Brazil) plans to investigate this
aspect further with South American data. The current hmF2 model in
IRI is based on the CCIR model for the propagation factor M(3000)F2.
Adeniyi (Nigeria) and Bilitza (USA) showed that by using measured
values of M(3000)F2, instead of the CCIR model, the evening peak in
hmF2 could quite often be reproduced. Their study is based on
ionosonde data from Ougadougou, Burkina Faso, an African station
close to the magnetic equator. A better representation of hmF2 during
quiet as well as storm time will be an important future goal of the
IRI group.

Intercosmos 19 topside sounder data were used to study the equator
anomaly region and the longitudinal distribution of F peak and
topside parameters (Deminova and Karpachev (Russia). Torres (Chile
presented a systematic comparative study of ionosonde data from
Brazil and Chile and found in general good agreement between the foF2
and hmF2 measurements and the IRI predictions for low solar activity
and discrepancies during high solar activity especially during
nighttime. Lazo and Calzadilla (Cuba; presented by Radicella) showed
how spherical harmonic analysis can be used for regional foF2 mapping
for the European and American sector. Ways to fully access the large
amount of ionosonde data stored on microfilm were discussed by Wright

Electron Density: Topside, Plasmasphere and TEC

The times and frequency of occurrence of an additional layer (the
so-called F3 layer) above the F2 peak were discussed by Batista
(Brazil) based on data from ionosondes and topside sounders. Such a
layer develops when the equatorial vertical drift pushes the F2 peak
upward while simultaneously a new F2 peak develops at lower altitudes
due to the standard F layer forming processes. This equatorial
phenomenon is most often found during daytime summer and high solar
activity. More statistical studies are needed before this feature can
be included in IRI.

Shortcomings of the current IRI topside model were discussed by
Ezquer (Argentina) based on comparisons with insitu data from the
Japanese Taiyo satellite. Efforts to improve the IRI topside model
continue with topside sounder data from Alouette and ISIS (Bilitza,
USA), and Intercosmos 19 (Pulinets, Russia). Bilitza (USA) proposed a
correction factor to better represent the upper topside.  Iwamoto
(Japan) discussed ways of correcting the current IRI topside formulas
to better represent ISS-b measurements.

Argentine IRI studies with topside and TEC data were discussed by
Ezquer Argentina) and Mosert (Argentina). A TEC model for the
Brazilian region was compared with IRI and discrepancies were found
during sunrise (1-hour shift) and midnight (IRI does not include the
observed peak near midnight) (Souza, Brazil). An effort was initiated
during the workshop to develop a TEC model for the whole South
American continent. The validation of GPS deduced TEC maps from
several groups with TOPEX data revealed shortcomings of several of
the map algorithms (Orus and Garcia-Fernandez, Spain). An overview of
the activities of the International GPS Service (IGS) Ionosphere
Working Group was provided by Feltens (Germany; presented by
Bilitza). The Barcelona, Spain  UPC group will continue to pursue the
updating of IRI with GPS data as a promising way to get better IRI

Efforts to combine IRI with a plasmaspheric model continue.
Gallagher's GCPM and Chasovitin's SIM have been proposed as candidate
models. Triskova (Czech Republic) pointed out Magion satellite data
as potential data source and Oyama (Japan) the Akebono data.

Electron Density: Spread-F and Variability

A model describing the occurrence probability of Spread-F in the
American longitude sector was presented by Abdu (Brazil). The model
describes the probability in terms of local time, season, solar flux,
and latitude (dip=+/- 25). The dominant features of spread-F
occurrence in the Indian sector were discussed by Chandra (India)
highlighting the strong correlation with solar activity. Combining
the Brazilian and Indian efforts should produce a first global
spread-F model for IRI. Ezquer (Argentina) reported about first GPS
scintillation measurements at Tucuman, Argentina. Iyer (India)
compared the scintillation indices (SI, S4) derived from data of the
anomaly crest station Rajkot with the models of Aerons and Secan.
Wright (USA) discussed the monitoring of Spread-F with digital
ionosondes and pointed to the IGY-era "f-plots" as a data source.

Quantitative description of ionopsheric variability  (i.e. standard
deviation from a  monthly mean) are now the primary goal of the IRI
Taks Force Activity at ICTP. At this workshop first results were
presented by Mosert (Argentina) regarding the variability of TEC
based on data from two Argentine stations.

Electron and Ion Temperatures

IRI now includes the Truhlik-Triskova-Smilauer model as a new option
for the electron temperature. This new model includes the early
morning peak in temperature that is currently represented by the
standard IRI model only in the F region not in the topside. An
important next step is now a correct representation of solar cycle
variations. The effect of geomagnetic inclination of electron density
and temperature was discussed by Oyama (Japan) based on his Hinotori
satellite data. Truhlik (Czech Republic) intends to use the formalism
developed for his electron temperature model to also produce a global
ion temperature model. Incoherent scatter data could play an
important role in improving the IRI plasma temperature models,
especially the variation with season and solar activity as was
pointed out by Mahajan (India) and Chau (Peru).

Ion Composition and Drift

Triskova and Truhlik (Czech Republic) presented  a new model for the
ion composition (O+, H+, He+, and N+) in the altitude range 500 to
3000 km based on data from Intercosmos 24 (ACTIVE) and from the
Atmosphere Explorer satellites. The model describes the ion densities
in terms of local time and a specially introduced magnetic field
coordinate. The authors plan to also use ion composition data from
ISIS 1, ISS-b, AE-B and AEROS to extend their model particularly in
terms of the description of solar cycle variations. An effort at the
National Space Science Data Center (NSSDC) to make older ionospheric
satellite data (like ISIS 1, AEROS and AE) available online was
described by Bilitza (USA). Truhlik (Czech Republic) introduced a new
model for the light ion density ratio based on ISIS 2, ISS-b, and
Intercosmos 24 data. Currently IRI use a constant value of 0.1 for
this ratio. It was decided to include the new model in the next
version of IRI.

Anderson and Reinisch (USA) pointed to the potential for deducing the
daytime electrojet current and vertical ExB ion drift from equatorial
magnetometer measurements.

Applications, New Members, and Future Meetings

A 3-D visualization of the Earth globe with surrounding IRI
ionosphere nicely illustrated the great educational capabilities of
IRI in conjunction with graphics tools (Watari and Iwamoto, Japan).

Lee-Anne McKinnell (Rhodes University, Grahamstown, South Africa),
Vladimir Truhlik (Institute of Atmospheric Physics, Prague, Czech
Republic), and V. K. Depuev (IZMIRAN, Moscow, Russia) were elected as
new members of the IRI Working Group.

In 2002 there will be a number of meetings with IRI involvement. Most
importantly the
next IRI workshop will be held as a session C4.3, entitled "The Path
toward Improved Ionosphere Specification and Forecast Models", during
the World Space Congress 2002 (34th COSPAR Scientific Assembly) in
Houston, Texas (10-19 October, 2002). Session C0.1 (Standard Space
Environment Models for ISO) during the same congress will discuss
models that are proposed to the International Standardization
Organization (ISO) including the IRI model for the ionosphere. During
the URSI General Assembly in Maastricht, Netherlands (18-24 August
2002) session G2, entitled "Operational Ionospheric Models Including
Data Ingest" is of special interest for the IRI group. For the 2003
IRI Workshop the IRI Working Group has been presented with two
proposals: (1) Rhodes University, Grahamstown, South Africa; (2)
Polytechnical University of Catalonia, Barcelona, Spain.

3. Job Announcement - Staff Physicist in Solar/Interplanetary Physics 
    at the NOAA Space Environment Center (SEC)
From: Rodney Viereck

The NOAA Space Environment Center (SEC) seeks a staff physicist with a
background in solar/interplanetary physics, ideally including
instrumentation and data analysis.  NOAA SEC has an active research
group in solar-terrestrial physics and has responsibilities for solar
EUV and X-ray instruments on the GOES spacecraft.  A new solar X-ray
imager was recently launched and is completing on-orbit checkout on the
GOES-12 spacecraft, and additional solar imaging instruments are being
planned for future GOES satellites. In addition, NOAA SEC has a strong
emphasis on space weather effects near Earth and on the operational
availability of data and forecasts. The new staff physicist will work
with solar/interplanetary data, participate in the specification and
development of future instrumentation, and conduct research on
solar/interplanetary processes and on their space weather consequences.
Application deadline is 31 January, 2002

Physicist Position: ZP-1310-IV (Equivalent to GS-13/14), annual salary
(2001): $64,169 - $98,579.  TO OBTAIN COMPLETE INFORMATION ON THIS
POSITION AND APPLICATION FORMS contact the U.S. Department of Commerce,
NOAA/MASC Human Resources Division, 325 Broadway, Boulder, CO, 80303,
(303) 497-6615 or visit the website at
Reference Vacancy #MASC/NOAA 01-215, closing January 31, 2002.  EQUAL

4. URSI General Assembly - Dead-line for abstract: 15 January
From: P. Wilkinson 


     Maastricht, The Netherlands, 17 to 24 August 2002.

The deadline for submission of abstracts is January 15th; next week.

         Hurry, now, to enter your on-line abstract.

The triennial URSI General Assembly will be held in Maastricht,
August 2002.  As usual, the program for the Assembly is very
comprehensive covering all areas of radio science.

Please go to: for full descriptions of all
the sessions, details about the Assembly and on-line abstract entry.

                     ACT NOW!

Submitted by Dr Phil Wilkinson, Commission G Chair
Commission G Website:


5. Some ESA Tender Actions from ESA EMITS 

       (From 20/12/2001 to 20/02/2002) 

For the complete list of ESA Tender Actions see: 

Note: This newsletter is an initiative of the ESA Space Systems Environment Analysis Section
and is a prototype mailing list intended to
provide a forum for information posting news of interest to the Space Weather community
in Europe.

- SWEN contact group (keeping SWEN informed of news from other channels)
  is currently:

  Eamonn Daly, ESA (excluding science programme)
  Richard Marsden, ESA science programme
  Maurizio Candidi, CNR
  Paul Cannon, URSI-Commission G
  Mike Hapgood,  EGS
  Hannu Koskinen, SCOSTEP working group on Space weather
  Pierre Lantos, Meudon Observatory
  Henrik Lundstedt, Lund space weather center
  Goetz Paschmann, ISSI
  Jean-Yves Prado, CNES Programme Directorate
  Michael Rycroft, ISU
  Volker Bothmer, EGS-Solar Physics Secretary
  Wolfgang Baumjohann, IWF Graz, Austria
  Jinbin Cao, Chinese Space Weather Activity Representative
  Barbara Poppe, NOAA Space Environment Centre

- SWEN archives are also available on:    

- Replies and submissions to this newsletter are welcomed and should be
  sent to:

- To subscribe to the newsletter send your email address

- Please update your e-mail address in the event of a change.
  Please send both your new and old e-mail address to the editor
  to ease updating of your file.

- We are looking forward to receiving your input.

  SWEN editor:

  Alexi Glover


  Nadine Hoffmann

  SWEN Manager:

  Alain Hilgers