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Geoscientific Instrumentation, Methods and Data Systems An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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Volume 1, issue 1
Geosci. Instrum. Method. Data Syst., 1, 77–84, 2012
© Author(s) 2012. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
Geosci. Instrum. Method. Data Syst., 1, 77–84, 2012
© Author(s) 2012. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.

Research article 25 May 2012

Research article | 25 May 2012

Retrieval of ionospheric profiles from the Mars Express MARSIS experiment data and comparison with radio occultation data

B. Sánchez-Cano2,1, O. Witasse3, M. Herraiz2,1, S. M. Radicella4, J. Bauer5,3, P.-L. Blelly6, and G. Rodríguez-Caderot7 B. Sánchez-Cano et al.
  • 1Universidad Complutense de Madrid (UCM), Departamento de Física de la Tierra, Astronomía y Astrofísica I, Facultad de Ciencias Físicas, Av. Complutense s/n, 28040 Madrid, Spain
  • 2Instituto de Geociencias (UCM-CSIC), c/José Antonio Nováis 2, 28040 Madrid, Spain
  • 3European Space Agency, ESTEC – Research and Scientific Support Department, Keplerlaan 1, 2200 AG Noordwijk, The Netherlands
  • 4Abdus Salam International Centre for Theoretical Physics (ICTP), Telecommunications/ICT for Development Laboratory, Strada Costiera 11, 34151 Trieste, Italy
  • 5European Space Agency, ESOC, Robert-Bosch Strasse 5, 64293 Darmstadt, Germany
  • 6Institut de Recherche en Astrophysique et Planétologie 9, Avenue du Colonel Roche, 31028 Toulouse Cedex 4, France
  • 7Universidad Complutense de Madrid (UCM), Sección Departamental de Astronomía y Geodesia, Facultad de Ciencias Matemáticas, Av. Complutense s/n, 28040 Madrid, Spain

Abstract. Since 2005 the Mars Advanced Radar and Ionospheric Sounding experiment (MARSIS) aboard Mars Express has acquired a unique dataset on the ionosphere of Mars made up of ionospheric soundings taken by the instrument working in its active ionospheric sounding (AIS) mode. These soundings play a role similar to those of modern Terrestrial digisondes in the analysis of our planet ionosphere and have allowed us to dramatically improve our knowledge about the Martian ionosphere. This paper describes this kind of data, which are available from the public Planetary Science Archive, and introduces the MAISDAT tool developed by the European Space Agency to analyze and derive the vertical profile of electron density. Comparisons with radio occultation profiles obtained from Mars Express Radio Science instrument are performed to validate the procedure used in this study.

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