UWEE Tech Report Series

Passive Coherent Scatter Radar Interferometer Implementation, Observations, and Analysis


Melissa G. Meyer, John D. Sahr

passive radar, radar interferometer


We have recently extended the passive radar technique to permit interferometric observation of ionospheric irregularities. We discuss the implementation of a passive radar interferometer at VHF frequencies and show observations of field-aligned irregularities in the high latitude E-region ionosphere. The interferometer achieves very fine azimuthal resolution (as fine as 0.1 degrees, or 2 km at a range of 1000 km); thus we can form two dimensional spatial images of the target volume. Many E-region scatterers are compact, with transverse extent no greater than 15 km; this is significantly smaller than the beamwidth of most coherent radars. By tracking interferometric position, we can estimatethe transverse drift of the scattering region. By coupling this infrmation with the line of sight Doppler shift and using the dispersion relation for meter scale irregularities, we estimate electric fields and velocity shears within the scattering volume. (submitted to Radio Science)

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