CORONAL VELOCITY MEASUREMENTS WITH ULYSSES: MULTI-LINK CORRELATION STUDIES DURING TWO SUPERIOR CONJUNCTIONS


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Abstract

A well-known method for studying the solar wind very close to the Sun (heliocentric distances: 4 to 40 solar radii) is by radio sounding between a spacecraft at superior conjunction and the Earth. The Ulysses Solar Corona Experiment was performed at the spacecraft's two solar conjunctions in summer 1991 and winter 1995, during which dual-frequency ranging and Doppler observations were conducted globally on a nearly continuous basis at the NASA Deep Space Network and other ground stations. The dual-frequency Doppler measurements were used to determine coronal plasma velocities by a cross-correlation analysis during those occasions when tracking data were recorded simultaneously at two well-separated ground stations. A ‘filtering’ technique was developed to suppress noise and enhance the 2-station correlations, a procedure particularly effective at small solar offsets. From the electron content measurements during the two solar conjunctions it was found that regions of higher electron density tend to occur when the two-station correlations yield slower outward flow velocities.

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