Van Allen Probes Observations of Structured Whistler-mode Activity and Coincident Electron Landau Acceleration Inside a Remnant Plasmaspheric Plume
We present observations from the Van Allen Probes spacecraft that identify an region of intense whistler-mode activity within a large density enhancement outside of the plasmasphere. We speculate that this density enhancement is part of a remnant plasmaspheric plume, with the observed wave being driven by a weakly anisotropic electron injection that drifted into the plume and became non-linearly unstable to whistler emission. Particle measurements indicate that a significant fraction of thermal (<100 eV) electrons within the plume were subject to Landau acceleration by these waves, an effect that is naturally explained by whistler emission within a gradient and high-density ducting inside a density enhancement.
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Journal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics