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Keywords:

  • ionospheric drift;
  • skymap processing;
  • digisonde measurement

[1] In this paper we concentrate on the plasma drift measurement performed by Digisonde Portable Sounder DPS 4 developed by the UMLCAR, Lowell. Special attention is paid to the quality control of data acquired prior to drift velocity calculations. Risks of carefree use of raw Doppler spectra for the plasma motion analysis have been recognized in the Digisonde community. In this paper we propose improvements of Digisonde drift data processing for velocity evaluation and provide a detailed step-by step description: (1) robust height range selection, (2) setting limits on the Doppler frequency shift, and (3) setting limits on the echo arrival angle. Raw data that passed our quality control were then used to derive three velocity components of the bulk plasma drift in the ionosphere. In the paper we discuss, in detail, application of the method on the DPS measurements. However, this technique can be efficiently applied on any other digital ionosondes drift data processing.