Review Article

Surveys in Geophysics

, Volume 28, Issue 1, pp 33-109

Open Access This content is freely available online to anyone, anywhere at any time.

A decade of the Super Dual Auroral Radar Network (SuperDARN): scientific achievements, new techniques and future directions

  • G. ChishamAffiliated withBritish Antarctic Survey, Natural Environment Research Council Email author 
  • , M. LesterAffiliated withDepartment of Physics and Astronomy, University of Leicester
  • , S. E. MilanAffiliated withDepartment of Physics and Astronomy, University of Leicester
  • , M. P. FreemanAffiliated withBritish Antarctic Survey, Natural Environment Research Council
  • , W. A. BristowAffiliated withUAF Geophysical Institute
  • , A. GrocottAffiliated withDepartment of Physics and Astronomy, University of Leicester
  • , K. A. McWilliamsAffiliated withUniversity of Saskatchewan
  • , J. M. RuohoniemiAffiliated withApplied Physics Laboratory, Johns Hopkins University
  • , T. K. YeomanAffiliated withDepartment of Physics and Astronomy, University of Leicester
    • , P. L. DysonAffiliated withDepartment of Physics, La Trobe University
    • , R. A. GreenwaldAffiliated withApplied Physics Laboratory, Johns Hopkins University
    • , T. KikuchiAffiliated withSolar-Terrestrial Environment Laboratory, Nagoya University
    • , M. PinnockAffiliated withBritish Antarctic Survey, Natural Environment Research Council
    • , J. P. S. RashAffiliated withSchool of Physics, University of KwaZulu-Natal
    • , N. SatoAffiliated withNational Institute of Polar Research
    • , G. J. SofkoAffiliated withUniversity of Saskatchewan
    • , J.-P. VillainAffiliated withBritish Antarctic Survey, Natural Environment Research CouncilLPCE/CNRS
    • , A. D. M. WalkerAffiliated withSchool of Physics, University of KwaZulu-Natal

Abstract

The Super Dual Auroral Radar Network (SuperDARN) has been operating as an international co-operative organization for over 10 years. The network has now grown so that the fields of view of its 18 radars cover the majority of the northern and southern hemisphere polar ionospheres. SuperDARN has been successful in addressing a wide range of scientific questions concerning processes in the magnetosphere, ionosphere, thermosphere, and mesosphere, as well as general plasma physics questions. We commence this paper with a historical introduction to SuperDARN. Following this, we review the science performed by SuperDARN over the last 10 years covering the areas of ionospheric convection, field-aligned currents, magnetic reconnection, substorms, MHD waves, the neutral atmosphere, and E-region ionospheric irregularities. In addition, we provide an up-to-date description of the current network, as well as the analysis techniques available for use with the data from the radars. We conclude the paper with a discussion of the future of SuperDARN, its expansion, and new science opportunities.

Keywords

SuperDARN Magnetosphere Ionosphere HF radar Ionospheric convection Magnetic reconnection Substorms Magnetic field-aligned currents ULF waves Gravity waves Mesospheric winds Ionospheric irregularities