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A High-frequency Receiving Array for Radar and Radio Imaging of the Ionosphere

Presentation #124.03 in the session High-Energy Solar Investigations Through Next-Generation Remote Sensing: Spectroscopy, Imaging, and Beyond — Poster Session.

Published onOct 20, 2022
A High-frequency Receiving Array for Radar and Radio Imaging of the Ionosphere

We are developing a 2 to 25 MHz, medium and high frequency (MF/HF) antenna array, for radar and radio imaging of the ionosphere. The array will consist of multiple active crossed antenna elements arranged in a partly ordered and partly random pattern providing a good distribution of baseline vectors, with 7 and 400 meter minimum and maximum spacing, respectively.

The proposed location for the array is at the site of the former U.S. Air Force Ramey Solar Observatory (RSO), in Aguadilla in northwest Puerto Rico. Radar imaging will be done in collaboration with the University of Colorado and NOAA HF radar system located at the USGS San Juan Observatory in Cayey, 110 km from Aguadilla.

Relocatable cable-less antenna elements will also be included, with phase maintained through the use of GPS-disciplined rubidium clocks. These elements may be used independently, or together with the main array for improved imaging resolution.

Science goals include the study of space weather, ionospheric structure and dynamics, meteors, lightning, radio propagation, and plasma physics. Radio imaging is ideal for the study of stimulated ionospheric radio emissions, such as those induced by the Arecibo Observatory high-power HF radio transmitter, which may be restored to operation in 2024.

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