International Reference Ionosphere (IRI) Model

version (30.4 KB) by Drew Compston
Get the International Reference Ionosphere (IRI) output parameters.


Updated Sat, 07 Dec 2019 02:41:25 +0000

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Computes the International Reference Ionosphere (IRI), which is an internationally recognized model for various ionospheric properties. I would call it more of a hack than a true IRI implementation as it works by querying an online interface using the curl command on an operating system terminal. Because of this, it requires an internet connection and is pretty slow, but if high speed is not an important issue for you, this can be an easy way to get IRI data into MATLAB. There are two functions that call different IRI versions. Function iri2012 calls the 2012 version found at, and function iri2016 calls the more recent 2016 version whose online interface is at

An example script for how to use the functions is given as iritest.m. This is also the script that generated the attached screenshot. Using a parfor loop on my dual core computer, the iri2012 function took about 5 minutes to run. (For comparison, the IGRF (commented out in the script) takes just over 1 second to run.) You can select which of the two provided functions to test with the function handle fun2test on line 13, and when using a parfor loop (set by the boolean useparfor on line 14), the function's progress can be displayed by utilizing the function parfor_progress on the File Exchange (File ID: 32101).

As stated, the query is made using the command curl in an operating system terminal. This program is built-in to Unix (and Mac I believe) but not Windows. Windows users can download cURL from You'll have to download the appropriate executable for your operating system, and I recommend putting it in the same directory as the provided functions.

Cite As

Drew Compston (2022). International Reference Ionosphere (IRI) Model (, MATLAB Central File Exchange. Retrieved .

MATLAB Release Compatibility
Created with R2007b
Compatible with any release
Platform Compatibility
Windows macOS Linux

Inspired: MSIS-E-00

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