Ionosphere and Upper Atmosphere
Instrumental recording of electrophonic sounds from Leonid fireballs
Article first published online: 23 JUL 2002
Copyright 2002 by the American Geophysical Union.
Journal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics (1978–2012)
Volume 107, Issue A7, pages SIA 11-1–SIA 11-9, July 2002
How to Cite
Instrumental recording of electrophonic sounds from Leonid fireballs, J. Geophys. Res., 107(A7), doi:10.1029/2001JA000310, 2002., , , , , , , and ,
- Issue published online: 23 JUL 2002
- Article first published online: 23 JUL 2002
- Manuscript Revised: 13 NOV 2001
- Manuscript Accepted: 13 NOV 2001
- Manuscript Received: 23 SEP 2001
- electrophonic sounds;
- ionosphere disturbances
 Electrophonic meteor sounds, heard simultaneously with the meteor appearance, are a longstanding problem due to their nonintuitive nature. Previous investigations have been undermined by lack of instrumental recordings. Here we present the first instrumental detection of electrophonic sounds obtained during the observation of 1998 Leonids from Mongolia. Two Leonid fireballs of brightness −6.5m and −12m produced short, low-frequency sounds, which were simultaneously recorded by microphones in a special setup and heard by different observers. Simultaneous measurements of electromagnetic ELF/VLF radiation above 500 Hz did not reveal any signal correlated to the electrophonic event. The lack of signal was explained by the low frequency of electrophones. We show that physical characteristics of Leonid electrophones cannot be completely explained by existing theories and that further theoretical refinement and observational work is needed. Finally, we tentatively suggest the possibility of stronger than expected coupling of fireballs with atmospheric charge dynamics and ionosphere.