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Generation of artificial ULF/ELF electromagnetic emission in the ionosphere by horizontal ground-based current system
  • Evgeny Fedorov,
  • Nikolay G. Mazur,
  • Vyatcheslav A. Pilipenko
Evgeny Fedorov
Institute of Physics of the Earth, Russian Academy of Sciences
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Nikolay G. Mazur
Institute of the Physics of the Earth
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Vyatcheslav A. Pilipenko
Institute of Physics of the Earth

Corresponding Author:[email protected]

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The feasibility of detection of electromagnetic response in the upper ionosphere to ground large-scale ultra-low-frequency (ULF) and extremely-low-frequency (ELF) transmitters by low-Earth orbit (LEO) satellites is considered. As an example of such transmitters, we consider the ZEVS 82 Hz transmitter for submarine communication, FENICS experiments with decommissioned electric power lines driven by 0.5–150 Hz generator, and industrial 50 Hz power transmission lines. We numerically model the ULF/ELF wave energy leakage into the upper ionosphere from an oscillating grounded linear current of a finite length suspended above a high-resistive ground. A realistic altitudinal profile of the plasma parameters has been reconstructed with the use of the IRI ionospheric model. For the ZEVS transmitter powered by 200 A current the modeled amplitudes of electromagnetic response can reach in the upper nightside ionosphere up to 60~$\mu$V/m and 6 pT. The assumption of an infinite source scale overestimates the ionospheric response by a factor of $\sim$6 as compared with realistic scale 60 km of the ZEVS transmitter. Unbalanced 50 Hz current of 10 A in large-scale ($>100$~km) power transmission lines can produce the electric response in the upper ionosphere that is sufficient to be detected by electric sensors at LEO satellite. The stimulation of artificial Pc1 pulsations (0.5 Hz) with amplitudes $\sim1$~pT and $\sim10$~$\mu$V/m by large-scale decommissioned power lines is possible with driving current $>120$~A.