Analysis Of Equatorial F-region Vertical Neutral Winds From Brazil FPI Observations
De La Garza, Jose
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Understanding the neutral dynamics of our upper atmosphere is an essential component of space weather prediction. In order to come up with better climatological models that describe upper atmospheric variations, an accurate description of vertical neutral winds is needed. Hence, observations of thermospheric winds must be continually made in order to fulfill this need. Vertical winds are generally smaller than horizontal winds, but even small vertical winds can have a significant effect on the ionosphere and thermosphere because of the large vertical density gradients that exist throughout the atmosphere. Recent observation deployments of Fabry-Perot Interferometers (FPIs) in Brazil have allowed substantial progress on determining the vertical component of thermospheric winds providing a broad coverage for the study of neutral dynamics of the upper atmosphere. In this thesis, neutral vertical wind data taken from Brazil FPI ground-based observations at around 240-km altitude between the years of 2010 to 2013 are used for a climatological study, which includes dependencies on seasonal and geomagnetic variations. First, in order to examine the reliability of the data, a cross-comparison from two different FPI measurement modes has been conducted. Second, the data have been binned according to local time and month. Moreover, variations of vertical winds and neutral temperatures during two storm periods have also been studied. Vertical winds show statistically non-zero values at a given local time, while displaying upward shifts of 5 m/s during analyzed storm events. Neutral temperatures show an increase by 100-200 K on the duskside during the same analyzed storm events.