Earth Nose Whistler in Stereo

Spectrogram of Earth nose whistler in stereo
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Earth Nose Whistler in Stereo

Cluster is a set of four Earth-orbiting spacecraft that fly in a formation that allows the disambiguation of various temporal and spatial features in the measured signals. In this instance the wideband plasma wave instruments, WBD, on Cluster 3 (Samba) and Cluster 4 (Tango) simultaneously measured what is known as a "nose whistler", allowing for a spatially separated stereo audio recording. Like all whistlers, this began as an impulsive broad-band burst of energy from a lightning discharge in the planetary atmosphere. As the signal propagated through the thin charged gas in space, following a magnetic field line, high and low frequencies traveled slower than the frequency that corresponds to the nose of the whistler. Combining the results from all four spacecraft we can understand the detailed geometry of the propagating whistler wave.

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