The ionospheric delay is of paramount importance to radio communication, satellite navigation and positioning. It is necessary to predict high-accuracy ionospheric peak parameters for single frequency receivers. In this study, the state-of-the-art artificial neural network (ANN) technique optimized by the genetic algorithm is used to develop global ionospheric models for predicting foF2 and hmF2. The models are based on long-term multiple measurements including ionospheric peak frequency model (GIPFM) and global ionospheric peak height model (GIPHM). Predictions of the GIPFM and GIPHM are compared with the International Reference Ionosphere (IRI) model in 2009 and 2013 respectively. This comparison shows that the root-mean-square errors (RMSEs) of GIPFM are 0.82 MHz and 0.71 MHz in 2013 and 2009, respectively. This result is about 20%-35% lower than that of IRI. Additionally, the corresponding hmF2 median errors of GIPHM are 20% to 30% smaller than that of IRI. Furthermore, the ANN models present a good capability to capture the global or regional ionospheric spatial-temporal characteristics, e.g., the equatorial ionization anomaly andWeddell Sea anomaly. The study shows that the ANN-based model has a better agreement to reference value than the IRI model, not only along the Greenwich meridian, but also on a global scale. The approach proposed in this study has the potential to be a new three-dimensional electron density model combined with the inclusion of the upcoming Constellation Observing System for Meteorology, Ionosphere and Climate (COSMIC-2) data.

Additional Metadata
Keywords Artificial neural network, COSMIC and ionosonde, foF2 and hmF2, Genetic algorithm, Ionospheric model
Persistent URL dx.doi.org/10.3390/rs12050866
Journal Remote Sensing
Citation
Li, W, Zhao, D, He, C, Hu, A, & Zhang, K. (2020). Advanced machine learning optimized by the genetic algorithm in ionospheric models using long-term multi-instrument observations. Remote Sensing, 12(5). doi:10.3390/rs12050866