Modeling inward diffusion and slow decay of energetic electrons in the Earth\textquoterights outer radiation belt

Author
Keywords
Abstract
A new 3D diffusion code is used to investigate the inward intrusion and slow decay of energetic radiation belt electrons (>0.5 MeV) observed by the Van Allen Probes during a 10-day quiet period in March 2013. During the inward transport the peak differential electron fluxes decreased by approximately an order of magnitude at various energies. Our 3D radiation belt simulation including radial diffusion and pitch angle and energy diffusion by plasmaspheric hiss and Electromagnetic Ion Cyclotron (EMIC) waves reproduces the essential features of the observed electron flux evolution. The decay timescales and the pitch angle distributions in our simulation are consistent with the Van Allen Probes observations over multiple energy channels. Our study suggests that the quiet-time energetic electron dynamics are effectively controlled by inward radial diffusion and pitch angle scattering due to a combination of plasmaspheric hiss and EMIC waves in the Earth\textquoterights radiation belts.
Year of Publication
2015
Journal
Geophysical Research Letters
Date Published
02/2015
URL
http://doi.wiley.com/10.1002/2014GL062977
DOI
10.1002/2014GL062977