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Abstract Radiation belt electrons undergo frequent acceleration, transport, and loss processes under various physical mechanisms. One of the most prevalent mechanisms is radial diffusion, caused by the resonant interactions between energetic electrons and ULF waves in the Pc4-5 band. An indication of this resonant interaction is believed to be the appearance of periodic flux oscillations. In this study, we report long-lasting, drift-periodic flux oscillations of relativistic and ultrarelativistic electrons with energies up to ∼7.7 MeV in the outer radiation belt, observed by the Van Allen Probes mission. During this March 2017 event, multi-MeV electron flux oscillations at the electron drift frequency appeared coincidently with enhanced Pc5 ULF wave activity and lasted for over 10 hours in the center of the outer belt. The amplitude of such flux oscillations is well correlated with the radial gradient of electron phase space density (PSD), with almost no oscillation observed near the PSD peak. The temporal evolution of the PSD radial profile also suggests the dominant role of radial diffusion in multi-MeV electron dynamics during this event. By combining these observations, we conclude that these multi-MeV electron flux oscillations are caused by the resonant interactions between electrons and broadband Pc5 ULF waves and are an indicator of the ongoing radial diffusion process during this event. They contain essential information of radial diffusion and have the potential to be further used to quantify the radial diffusion effects and aid in a better understanding of this prevailing mechanism. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
Zhao, Hong; Sarris, Theodore; Li, Xinlin; Weiner, Max; Huckabee, Isabela; Baker, Daniel; Jaynes, Allison; Kanekal, Shrikanth; Elkington, Scot; Barani, Mohammad; Tu, Weichao; Liu, Wenlong; Zhang, Dianjun; Hartinger, Michael;
Published by: Journal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics Published on: 07/2021
YEAR: 2021   DOI: https://doi.org/10.1029/2021JA029284
Pc5 (2–7 mHz) ultralow frequency (ULF) waves play a significant role in resonating with particles and transferring energy in the coupled magnetospheric and ionospheric system. Recent studies found that Pc5 ULF waves can be triggered by foreshock transients which can perturb the magnetopause through dynamic pressure variation. However, whether foreshock transient-driven Pc5 ULF waves are geoeffective and can propagate globally is still poorly understood. In this study, we take advantage of the conjunction between in situ (by the THEMIS probes, Geotail satellite, GOES satellites, and Van Allen probes) and ground-based (by the all-sky imager at South Pole and ground-based magnetometers) observations to simultaneously analyze the waves from the foreshock region to the dayside and nightside magnetosphere. Both of our two events show that the Pc5 ULF waves are generated by foreshock transients in the dayside magnetosphere. The in situ observations by THEMIS A and D and the 2-D auroral signatures show that the compressional mode waves are likely broadband and coupled to the FLRs with different frequencies and different azimuthal phase speeds. This is the first report that foreshock transients can drive both low- and high-m FLRs, with the azimuthal wave numbers varying from ~5 to ~23. Moreover, the Pc5 ULF waves propagated antisunward to midnight, this can potentially modulate magnetospheric and ionospheric dynamics globally.
Published by: Journal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics Published on: 11/2020
YEAR: 2020   DOI: https://doi.org/10.1029/2020JA028411
Electron flux measurements are an important diagnostic for interactions between ultralow-frequency (ULF) waves and relativistic (\~1 MeV) electrons. Since measurements are collected by particle detectors with finite energy channel width, they are affected by a phase mixing process that can obscure these interactions. We demonstrate that ultrahigh-resolution electron measurements from the Magnetic Electron Ion Spectrometer on the Van Allen Probes mission\textemdashobtained using a data product that improves the energy resolution by roughly an order of magnitude\textemdashare crucial for understanding ULF wave-particle interactions. In particular, the ultrahigh-resolution measurements reveal a range of complex dynamics that cannot be resolved by standard measurements. Furthermore, the standard measurements provide estimates for the ULF flux modulation amplitude, period, and phase that may not be representative of true flux modulations, potentially leading to ambiguous conclusions concerning electron dynamics.
Published by: Geophysical Research Letters Published on: 10/2018
YEAR: 2018   DOI: 10.1029/2018GL080291
The stimulation of EMIC waves by a magnetospheric compression is perhaps the closest thing to a controlled experiment that is currently possible in magnetospheric physics, in that one prominent factor that can increase wave growth acts at a well-defined time. We present a detailed analysis of EMIC waves observed in the outer dayside magnetosphere by the four Magnetosphere Multiscale (MMS) spacecraft, Van Allen Probe A, and GOES 13, and by four very high latitude ground magnetometer stations in the western hemisphere before, during, and after a modest interplanetary shock on December 14, 2015. Analysis shows several features consistent with current theory, as well as some unexpected features. During the most intense MMS wave burst, which began ~ 1 min after the end of a brief magnetosheath incursion, independent transverse EMIC waves with orthogonal linear polarizations appeared simultaneously at all four spacecraft. He++ band EMIC waves were observed by MMS inside the magnetosphere, whereas almost all previous studies of He++ band EMIC waves observed them only in the magnetosheath and magnetopause boundary layers. Transverse EMIC waves also appeared at Van Allen Probe A and GOES 13 very near the times when the magnetic field compression reached their locations, indicating that the compression lowered the instability threshold to allow for EMIC wave generation throughout the outer dayside magnetosphere. The timing of the EMIC waves at both MMS and Van Allen Probe A was consistent with theoretical expectations for EMIC instabilities based on characteristics of the proton distributions observed by instruments on these spacecraft.
Engebretson, M.; Posch, J.; Capman, N.; Campuzano, N.; elik, P.; Allen, R.; Vines, S.; Anderson, B.; Tian, S.; Cattell, C.; Wygant, J.; Fuselier, S.; Argall, M.; Lessard, M.; Torbert, R.; Moldwin, M.; Hartinger, M.; Kim, H.; Russell, C.; Kletzing, C.; Reeves, G.; Singer, H.;
Published by: Journal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics Published on: 09/2018
YEAR: 2018   DOI: 10.1029/2018JA025984
In one model, Pi2 pulsations are driven pulse by pulse by fast mode pulses that are launched as periodic bursty bulk flows brake when they approach the Earth. We have examined this model by analyzing data from multiple spacecraft and ground magnetometers for a Pi2 pulsation event. During the event, which started at \~2226 UT on 8 November 2014, Time History of Events and Macroscale Interactions during Substorms (THEMIS)-D detected an \~2 min period plasma bulk flow oscillation in the near-Earth magnetotail, while THEMIS-E and Van Allen Probes-B, both located on the nightside just earthward of the electron plasmapause, detected a Pi2 pulsation consisting of a 10 mHz oscillation in the azimuthal component of the electric field and a 19-mHz oscillation in the compressional component of the magnetic field. On the ground, magnetic field oscillations containing both frequencies were observed both on the nightside and on the dayside. The nightside observations indicated that the pulsation had a radially standing structure, which is consistent with plasmaspheric virtual resonances (PVRs) excited in a magnetohydrodynamic simulation assuming an impulsive energy source. Cross-spectral analysis of the magnetotail flow oscillation and the Pi2 pulsation indicated low coherence between them. These results suggest that the flow oscillation contributed to the Pi2 pulsation as a broadband energy source and that only the spectral components matching the PVR frequencies were detected with well-defined frequencies. Ionospheric currents connected to the PVRs may be responsible for the appearance of the pulsation on the dayside.
Published by: Journal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics Published on: 09/2018
YEAR: 2018   DOI: 10.1029/2018JA025664
Cavity mode oscillations (CMOs) are basic magnetohydrodynamic eigenmodes in the magnetosphere predicted by theory and are expected to occur following the arrival of an interplanetary shock. However, observational studies of shock-induced CMOs have been sparse. We present a case study of a dayside ultra-low-frequency (ULF) wave event that exhibited CMO properties. The event occurred immediately following the arrival of an interplanetary shock at 0829 UT on 15 August 2015. The shock was observed in the solar wind by the Time History of Events and Macroscale Interactions during Substorms-B and -C spacecraft, and magnetospheric ULF waves were observed by multiple spacecraft including the Van Allen Probes-A and -B spacecraft, which were located in the dayside plasmasphere at L\~ 1.4 and L\~ 2.4, respectively. Both Van Allen Probes spacecraft detected compressional poloidal mode oscillations at \~13 mHz (fundamental) and \~26 mHz (second harmonic). At both frequencies, the azimuthal component of the electric field (Eϕ) lagged behind the compressional component of the magnetic field (Bμ) by \~90o. The frequencies and the Eϕ-Bμ relative phase are in good agreement with the CMOs generated in a dipole magnetohydrodynamic simulation that incorporates a realistic plasma mass density distribution and ionospheric boundary condition. The oscillations were also detected on the ground by the European quasi-Meridional Magnetometer Array, which was located near the magnetic field footprints of the Van Allen Probes spacecraft.
Published by: Journal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics Published on: 02/2018
YEAR: 2018   DOI: 10.1002/2017JA024639
We investigate a quiet-time event of magnetospheric Pc5 ultra low frequency (ULF) waves and their likely external drivers using multiple spacecraft observations. Enhancements of electric and magnetic field perturbations in two narrow frequency bands, 1.5-2 mHz and 3.5-4 mHz, were observed over a large radial distance range from r ~5 to 11 RE. During the first half of this event, perturbations were mainly observed in the transverse components and only in the 3.5-4 mHz band. In comparison, enhancements were stronger during the second half in both transverse and compressional components and in both frequency bands. No indication of field line resonances was found for these magnetic field perturbations. Perturbations in these two bands were also observed in the magnetosheath, but not in the solar wind dynamic pressure perturbations. For the first interval, good correlations between the flow perturbations in the magnetosphere and magnetosheath and an indirect signature for Kelvin-Helmholtz (K-H) vortices suggest K-H surface waves as the driver. For the second interval, good correlations are found between the magnetosheath dynamic pressure perturbations, magnetopause deformation, and magnetospheric waves, all in good correspondence to IMF discontinuities. The characteristics of these perturbations can be explained by being driven by foreshock perturbations resulting from these IMF discontinuities. This event shows that even during quiet periods, KH-unstable magnetopause and ion foreshock perturbations can combine to create a highly dynamic magnetospheric ULF wave environment.
Wang, Chih-Ping; Thorne, Richard; Liu, Terry; Hartinger, Michael; Nagai, Tsugunobu; Angelopoulos, Vassilis; Wygant, John; Breneman, Aaron; Kletzing, Craig; Reeves, Geoffrey; Claudepierre, Seth; Spence, Harlan;
Published by: Journal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics Published on: 04/2017
YEAR: 2017   DOI: 10.1002/2016JA023610
Ultralow frequency (ULF) waves generated in the ion foreshock are a well-known source of Pc3-Pc4 waves (7\textendash100 mHz) observed in the dayside magnetosphere. We use data acquired on 10 April 2013 by multiple spacecraft to demonstrate that ULF waves of upstream origin can propagate to the midnight sector of the inner magnetosphere. At 1130\textendash1730 UT on the selected day, the two Van Allen Probes spacecraft and the geostationary ETS-VIII satellite detected compressional 20 to 40 mHz magnetic field oscillations between L \~ 4 and L \~ 7 in the midnight sector, along with other spacecraft located closer to noon. Upstream origin of the oscillations is concluded from the wave frequency that matches a theoretical model, globally coherent amplitude modulation, and duskward propagation that is consistent with expected entry of the upstream wave energy through the dawnside flank under the observed interplanetary magnetic field. The oscillations are attributed to magnetohydrodynamic fast-mode waves based on their propagation velocity of \~300 km/s and the relationship between the electric and magnetic field perturbations. The magnitude of the azimuthal wave number is estimated to be \~30. There is no evidence that the oscillations propagated to the ground in the midnight sector.
Published by: Journal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics Published on: 08/2016
YEAR: 2016   DOI: 10.1002/2016JA022958
We use four years of THEMIS double-probe measurements to offer, for the first time, a complete picture of the dawn-dusk electric field covering all local times and radial distances in the inner magnetosphere based on in situ equatorial observations. This study is motivated by the results from the CRRES mission, which revealed a local maximum in the electric field developing near Earth during storm times, rather than the expected enhancement at higher L shells that is shielded near Earth as suggested by the Volland-Stern model. The CRRES observations were limited to the dusk side, while THEMIS provides complete local time coverage. We show strong agreement with the CRRES results on the dusk side, with a local maximum near L =4 for moderate levels of geomagnetic activity and evidence of strong electric fields inside L =3 during the most active times. The extensive dataset from THEMIS also confirms the day/night asymmetry on the dusk side, where the enhancement is closest to Earth in the dusk-midnight sector, and is farther away closer to noon. A similar, but smaller in magnitude, local maximum is observed on the dawn side near L =4. The noon sector shows the smallest average electric fields, and for more active times, the enhancement develops near L =7 rather than L =4. We also investigate the impact of the uncertain boom-shorting factor on the results, and show that while the absolute magnitude of the electric field may be underestimated, the trends with geomagnetic activity remain intact.
Published by: Journal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics Published on: 10/2014
YEAR: 2014   DOI: 10.1002/2014JA020360
The Van Allen radiation belts were first discovered in 1958 by the Explorer series of spacecraft1. The dynamic outer belt consists primarily of relativistic electrons trapped by the Earth\textquoterights magnetic field. Magnetospheric processes driven by the solar wind2 cause the electron flux in this belt to fluctuate substantially over timescales ranging from minutes to years3. The most dramatic of these events are known as flux \textquoterightdropouts\textquoteright and often occur during geomagnetic storms. During such an event the electron flux can drop by several orders of magnitude in just a few hours4, 5 and remain low even after a storm has abated. Various solar wind phenomena, including coronal mass ejections and co-rotating interaction regions6, can drive storm activity, but several outstanding questions remain concerning dropouts and the precise channels to which outer belt electrons are lost during these events. By analysing data collected at multiple altitudes by the THEMIS, GOES, and NOAA\textendashPOES spacecraft, we show that the sudden electron depletion observed during a recent storm\textquoterights main phase is primarily a result of outward transport rather than loss to the atmosphere.
Published by: Nature Physics Published on: 01/2012
YEAR: 2012   DOI: 10.1038/nphys2185