Event A-111    2013 / 2014 Season

In this effort we request continued support (i.e., a renewal of NSF-0638587, Studies of the Polar Ionosphere and Magnetosphere from Measurements in Antarctica, with a new PI institution) to study interrelated ITM phenomena observed at high latitudes using coordinated and collaborative instrumentation from Antarctica. Specifically, we seek support for the continued operation of a suite of geospace instrumentation, consisting of fluxgate magnetometers, scintillation GPS receivers, imaging and broadband riometers, optical systems, and a variety of other instruments, currently located at both South Pole (SPA) and McMurdo (MCM) stations which have a sustained track-record of robust operation and community support. Data from this suite of instrumentation can be synergistically combined to study:

a) the synoptic variability of the magnetospheric open-closed boundary (OCB) and associated cusp structures (utilizing fluxgate, photometer, and imager data);
b) study of simultaneous ELF whistler events at SPA and MCM on their relationship to ionospheric conditions (using ELF receiver, fluxgate, and GPS data); and
c) auroral and polar cap scintillation occurrence, strength, and relationship with ITM activity (using GPS, fluxgate, riometer, imager, VLF and ELF data).

We note that these particular topics are only a partial listing of the work that can, and will, be performed with data from this instrumentation. Additional planned collaborations with other projects taking place in Antarctica, and at nominally conjugate regions in the Arctic, include the MCM lidar system, the southern hemisphere SuperDARN radars, Fabry-Perot interferometers, the BARRELS campaign, etc., and in orbit, including the THEMIS suite of spacecraft and the RBSP spacecraft, will make use of this data to provide context to their measurements.

In order to obtain these results, we request herein a number of relatively minor engineering upgrades that will enable more robust data collection and dissemination. Specifically, we propose to update the current data acquisition (DAQ) system at both SPA and MCM that supports these instruments, as the original DAQ is now over two decades old and replacement components are no longer available. We propose to enhance our state-side data portal so that the data products from the suite of instruments will be available for public use within 24-hours, making the data truly synoptic for use in various space weather models. Finally, in the proposal there is an effort to install a proton magnetometer at SPA so that absolute geomagnetic field measurements can be obtained for eventual incorporation into the USGS program and an effort to install another ELF receiver at MCM so that unique comparative studies can be done at both sites.