Broadband longwave radio remote sensing instrumentation

Publication Type Journal Article
VLF Publication Number 2018-09
Year Of Publication 2018
Authors Higginson-Rollins, M, Chang, J, Paschal, EW, McCormick, JC, Gross, NC, Thompson, L
Abstract We present the performance characteristics of a high-sensitivity radio receiver for the frequency band0.5-470 kHz, known as the Low Frequency Atmospheric Weather Electromagnetic System for Obser-vation, Modeling, and Education, or LF AWESOME. The receiver is an upgraded version of the VLFAWESOME, completed in 2004, which provided high sensitivity broadband radio measurements ofnatural lightning emissions, transmitting beacons, and radio emissions from the near-Earth spaceenvironment. It has been deployed at many locations worldwide and used as the basis for dozens ofscientific studies. We present here a significant upgrade to the AWESOME, in which the frequencyrange has been extended to include the LF and part ? of the medium frequency (MF) bands, the sensitiv-ity improved by 10-25 dB to be as low as 0.03 fT/ Hz, depending on the frequency, and timing errorreduced to 15-20 ns range. The expanded capabilities allow detection of radio atmospherics from light-ning strokes at global distances and multiple traverses around the world. It also allows monitoring oftransmitting beacons in the LF/MF band at thousands of km distance. We detail the specification of theLF AWESOME and demonstrate a number of scientific applications. We also describe and character-ize a new algorithm for minimum shift keying demodulation for VLF/LF transmitters for ionosphericremote sensing applications. Published by AIP Publishing.
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