Scintillation and loss of signal lock from poleward moving auroral forms in the cusp ionosphere
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We present two examples from the cusp ionosphere over Svalbard, where poleward moving auroral forms (PMAFs) are causing significant phase scintillation in signals from navigation satellites. The data were obtained using a combination of ground-based optical instruments and a newly installed multiconstellation navigation signal receiver at Longyearbyen. Both events affected signals from GPS and Global Navigation Satellite System (GLONASS). When one intense PMAF appeared, the signal from one GPS spacecraft also experienced a temporary loss of signal lock. Although several polar cap patches were also observed in the area as enhancements in total electron content, the most severe scintillation and loss of signal lock appear to be attributed to very intense PMAF activity. This shows that PMAFs are locations of strong ionospheric irregularities, which at times may cause more severe disturbances in the cusp ionosphere for navigation signals than polar cap patches.