Storm time observations of plasmasphere erosion flux in the magnetosphere and ionosphere

Author
Keywords
Abstract
Plasmasphere erosion carries cold dense plasma of ionospheric origin in a storm-enhanced density plume extending from dusk toward and through the noontime cusp and dayside magnetopause and back across polar latitudes in a polar tongue of ionization. We examine dusk sector (20 MLT) plasmasphere erosion during the 17 March 2013 storm (Dst ~ -130 nT) using simultaneous, magnetically aligned direct sunward ion flux observations at high altitude by Van Allen Probes RBSP-A (at ~3.0 Re) and at ionospheric heights (~840 km) by DMSP F-18. Plasma erosion occurs at both high and low altitudes where the subauroral polarization stream flow overlaps the outer plasmasphere. At ~20 UT, RBSP-A observed ~1.2E12 m-2 s-1 erosion flux, while DMSP F-18 observed ~2E13 m-2 s-1 sunward flux. We find close similarities at high and low altitudes between the erosion plume in both invariant latitude spatial extent and plasma characteristics.
Year of Publication
2014
Journal
Geophysical Research Letters
Volume
41
Number of Pages
762-768
Date Published
02/2014
URL
http://doi.wiley.com/10.1002/2013GL059124
DOI
10.1002/2013GL059124