Spatial correlation between lightning strikes and whistler observations from Tihany, Hungary

J. Öster, A. B. Collier, A. R W Hughes, L. G. Blomberg, J. Lichtenberger

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

3 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

A whistler is a very low frequency (VLF) phenomenon that acquires its characteristics from dispersive propagation in the magneto- sphere. Whistlers are derived from the intense VLF radiation produced in lightning strikes, which can travel great distances within the Earth-ionosphere waveguide (EIWG) before penetrating the ionosphere, and exciting a duct. Field-aligned ducts of enhanced plasma density guide the propagation from one hemisphere to the other. The location of the duct, relative to the strike that causes the whistler, is unknown. Whistler time series from Tihany, Hungary, have been cross-correlated with lightning data obtained from the World Wide Lightning Location Network (WWLLN). The results show that whistlers observed at Tihany originate mainly from lightning strikes in an area with a radius of approximately 1 000 km surrounding the magnetic conjugate point in the Indian Ocean Just east of East London, South Africa. A clear diurnal distinction was seen in that the correlation is maximised when the whistler station and the source region are in darkness. This is believed to relate to the diurnal variation of the ionosphere, which becomes more transparent to VLF waves at night.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)234-237
Number of pages4
JournalSouth African Journal of Science
Volume105
Issue number5-6
Publication statusPublished - May 2009

Fingerprint

Lightning
lightning
Hungary
Ionosphere
Ducts
ionosphere
Indian Ocean
Plasma density
Darkness
South Africa
diurnal variation
travel
magnetosphere
Time series
time series analysis
Waveguides
Earth (planet)
time series
Radiation
plasma

Keywords

  • Correlation
  • Lightning
  • Magnetosphere
  • Space Physics
  • Whistler Waves

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)

Cite this

Spatial correlation between lightning strikes and whistler observations from Tihany, Hungary. / Öster, J.; Collier, A. B.; Hughes, A. R W; Blomberg, L. G.; Lichtenberger, J.

In: South African Journal of Science, Vol. 105, No. 5-6, 05.2009, p. 234-237.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Öster, J. ; Collier, A. B. ; Hughes, A. R W ; Blomberg, L. G. ; Lichtenberger, J. / Spatial correlation between lightning strikes and whistler observations from Tihany, Hungary. In: South African Journal of Science. 2009 ; Vol. 105, No. 5-6. pp. 234-237.
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