Outer Radiation Belt Electron Lifetime Model Based on Combined Van Allen Probes and Cluster VLF Measurements
The flux of energetic electrons in the outer radiation belt shows a high variability. The interactions of electrons with very low frequency (VLF) chorus waves play a significant role in controlling the flux variation of these particles. Quantifying the effects of these interactions is crucially important for accurately modeling the global dynamics of the outer radiation belt and to provide a comprehensive description of electron flux variations over a wide energy range (from the source population of 30 keV electrons up to the relativistic core population of the outer radiation belt). Here, we use a synthetic chorus wave model based on a combined database compiled from the Van Allen Probes and Cluster spacecraft VLF measurements to develop a comprehensive parametric model of electron lifetimes as a function of L-shell, electron energy, and geomagnetic activity. The wave model takes into account the wave amplitude dependence on geomagnetic latitude, wave normal angle distribution, and variations of wave frequency with latitude. We provide general analytical formulas to estimate electron lifetimes as a function of L-shell (for L = 3.0 to L = 6.5), electron energy (from 30 keV to 2 MeV), and geomagnetic activity parameterized by the AE index. The present model lifetimes are compared to previous studies and analytical results and also show a good agreement with measured lifetimes of 30 to 300 keV electrons at geosynchronous orbit.
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Journal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics
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