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Found 7 entries in the Bibliography.

Showing entries from 1 through 7


Comparison of Van Allen Probes Energetic Electron Data with Corresponding GOES-15 Measurements: 2012-2018

Baker, D.N.; Zhao, H.; Li, X.; Kanekal, S.G.; Jaynes, A.N.; Kress, B.T.; Rodriguez, J.V.; Singer, H.J.; Claudepierre, S.G.; Fennell, J.F.; Hoxie, V.;

Published by: Journal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics      Published on: 11/2019

YEAR: 2019     DOI: 10.1029/2019JA027331

energetic particles; Magnetosphere:Inner; Magnetospheric configuration; Radiation belts; Space weather; Van Allen Probes

Multiyear Measurements of Radiation Belt Electrons: Acceleration, Transport, and Loss

In addition to clarifying morphological structures of the Earth\textquoterights radiation belts, it has also been a major achievement of the Van Allen Probes mission to understand more thoroughly how highly relativistic and ultrarelativistic electrons are accelerated deep inside the radiation belts. Prior studies have demonstrated that electrons up to energies of 10 megaelectron volts (MeV) can be produced over broad regions of the outer Van Allen zone on timescales of minutes to a few hours. It often is seen that geomagnetic activity driven by strong solar storms (i.e., coronal mass ejections, or CMEs) almost inexorably leads to relativistic electron production through the intermediary step of intense magnetospheric substorms. In this study, we report observations over the 6-year period 1 September 2012 to 1 September 2018. We focus on data about the relativistic and ultrarelativistic electrons (E>=5 MeV) measured by the Relativistic Electron-Proton Telescope sensors on board the Van Allen Probes spacecraft. This work portrays the radiation belt acceleration, transport, and loss characteristics over a wide range of geomagnetic events. We emphasize features seen repeatedly in the data (three-belt structures, \textquotedblleftimpenetrable\textquotedblright barrier properties, and radial diffusion signatures) in the context of acceleration and loss mechanisms. We especially highlight solar wind forcing of the ultrarelativistic electron populations and extended periods when such electrons were absent. The analysis includes new display tools showing spatial features of the mission-long time variability of the outer Van Allen belt emphasizing the remarkable dynamics of the system.

Baker, Daniel; Hoxie, Vaughn; Zhao, Hong; Jaynes, Allison; Kanekal, Shri; Li, Xinlin; Elkington, Scot;

Published by: Journal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics      Published on: 03/2019

YEAR: 2019     DOI: 10.1029/2018JA026259

convection electric field; Energetic particle deep penetration; Low L Region; Radiation belts; Van Allen Probes


Modeling the Proton Radiation Belt With Van Allen Probes Relativistic Electron-Proton Telescope Data

An empirical model of the proton radiation belt is constructed from data taken during 2013\textendash2017 by the Relativistic Electron-Proton Telescopes on the Van Allen Probes satellites. The model intensity is a function of time, kinetic energy in the range 18\textendash600 MeV, equatorial pitch angle, and L shell of proton guiding centers. Data are selected, on the basis of energy deposits in each of the nine silicon detectors, to reduce background caused by hard proton energy spectra at low L. Instrument response functions are computed by Monte Carlo integration, using simulated proton paths through a simplified structural model, to account for energy loss in shielding material for protons outside the nominal field of view. Overlap of energy channels, their wide angular response, and changing satellite orientation require the model dependencies on all three independent variables be determined simultaneously. This is done by least squares minimization with a customized steepest descent algorithm. Model uncertainty accounts for statistical data error and systematic error in the simulated instrument response. A proton energy spectrum is also computed from data taken during the 8 January 2014 solar event, to illustrate methods for the simpler case of an isotropic and homogeneous model distribution. Radiation belt and solar proton results are compared to intensities computed with a simplified, on-axis response that can provide a good approximation under limited circumstances.

Selesnick, R.; Baker, D.; Kanekal, S.; Hoxie, V.; Li, X.;

Published by: Journal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics      Published on: 01/2018

YEAR: 2018     DOI: 10.1002/2017JA024661

data; protons; Radiation belt; Van Allen Probes


An impenetrable barrier to ultrarelativistic electrons in the Van Allen radiation belts

Early observations1, 2 indicated that the Earth\textquoterights Van Allen radiation belts could be separated into an inner zone dominated by high-energy protons and an outer zone dominated by high-energy electrons. Subsequent studies3, 4 showed that electrons of moderate energy (less than about one megaelectronvolt) often populate both zones, with a deep \textquoteleftslot\textquoteright region largely devoid of particles between them. There is a region of dense cold plasma around the Earth known as the plasmasphere, the outer boundary of which is called the plasmapause. The two-belt radiation structure was explained as arising from strong electron interactions with plasmaspheric hiss just inside the plasmapause boundary5, with the inner edge of the outer radiation zone corresponding to the minimum plasmapause location6. Recent observations have revealed unexpected radiation belt morphology7, 8, especially at ultrarelativistic kinetic energies9, 10 (more than five megaelectronvolts). Here we analyse an extended data set that reveals an exceedingly sharp inner boundary for the ultrarelativistic electrons. Additional, concurrently measured data11 reveal that this barrier to inward electron radial transport does not arise because of a physical boundary within the Earth\textquoterights intrinsic magnetic field, and that inward radial diffusion is unlikely to be inhibited by scattering by electromagnetic transmitter wave fields. Rather, we suggest that exceptionally slow natural inward radial diffusion combined with weak, but persistent, wave\textendashparticle pitch angle scattering deep inside the Earth\textquoterights plasmasphere can combine to create an almost impenetrable barrier through which the most energetic Van Allen belt electrons cannot migrate.

Baker, D.; Jaynes, A.; Hoxie, V.; Thorne, R.; Foster, J.; Li, X.; Fennell, J.; Wygant, J.; Kanekal, S.; Erickson, P.; Kurth, W.; Li, W.; Ma, Q.; Schiller, Q.; Blum, L.; Malaspina, D.; Gerrard, A.; Lanzerotti, L.;

Published by: Nature      Published on: 11/2014

YEAR: 2014     DOI: 10.1038/nature13956

Magnetospheric physics; ultrarelativistic electrons; Van Allen Belts; Van Allen Probes


James Van Allen and His Namesake NASA Mission

In many ways, James A. Van Allen defined and \textquotedblleftinvented\textquotedblright modern space research. His example showed the way for government-university partners to pursue basic research that also served important national and international goals. He was a tireless advocate for space exploration and for the role of space science in the spectrum of national priorities.

Baker, D.; Hoxie, V.; Jaynes, A.; Kale, A.; Kanekal, S.; Li, X.; Reeves, G.; Spence, H.;

Published by: Eos, Transactions American Geophysical Union      Published on: 12/2013

YEAR: 2013     DOI: 10.1002/eost.v94.4910.1002/2013EO490001

RBSP; Van Allen Probes

The Relativistic Electron-Proton Telescope (REPT) Instrument on Board the Radiation Belt Storm Probes (RBSP) Spacecraft: Characterization of Earth\textquoterights Radiation Belt High-Energy Particle Populations

Particle acceleration and loss in the million electron Volt (MeV) energy range (and above) is the least understood aspect of radiation belt science. In order to measure cleanly and separately both the energetic electron and energetic proton components, there is a need for a carefully designed detector system. The Relativistic Electron-Proton Telescope (REPT) on board the Radiation Belt Storm Probe (RBSP) pair of spacecraft consists of a stack of high-performance silicon solid-state detectors in a telescope configuration, a collimation aperture, and a thick case surrounding the detector stack to shield the sensors from penetrating radiation and bremsstrahlung. The instrument points perpendicular to the spin axis of the spacecraft and measures high-energy electrons (up to \~20 MeV) with excellent sensitivity and also measures magnetospheric and solar protons to energies well above E=100 MeV. The instrument has a large geometric factor (g=0.2 cm2 sr) to get reasonable count rates (above background) at the higher energies and yet will not saturate at the lower energy ranges. There must be fast enough electronics to avert undue dead-time limitations and chance coincidence effects. The key goal for the REPT design is to measure the directional electron intensities (in the range 10-2\textendash106 particles/cm2 s sr MeV) and energy spectra (ΔE/E\~25 \%) throughout the slot and outer radiation belt region. Present simulations and detailed laboratory calibrations show that an excellent design has been attained for the RBSP needs. We describe the engineering design, operational approaches, science objectives, and planned data products for REPT.

Baker, D.; Kanekal, S.; Hoxie, V.; Batiste, S.; Bolton, M.; Li, X.; Elkington, S.; Monk, S.; Reukauf, R.; Steg, S.; Westfall, J.; Belting, C.; Bolton, B.; Braun, D.; Cervelli, B.; Hubbell, K.; Kien, M.; Knappmiller, S.; Wade, S.; Lamprecht, B.; Stevens, K.; Wallace, J.; Yehle, A.; Spence, H.; Friedel, R.;

Published by: Space Science Reviews      Published on: 11/2013

YEAR: 2013     DOI: 10.1007/s11214-012-9950-9

RBSP; Van Allen Probes

A Long-Lived Relativistic Electron Storage Ring Embedded in Earth\textquoterights Outer Van Allen Belt

Since their discovery more than 50 years ago, Earth\textquoterights Van Allen radiation belts have been considered to consist of two distinct zones of trapped, highly energetic charged particles. The outer zone is composed predominantly of megaelectron volt (MeV) electrons that wax and wane in intensity on time scales ranging from hours to days, depending primarily on external forcing by the solar wind. The spatially separated inner zone is composed of commingled high-energy electrons and very energetic positive ions (mostly protons), the latter being stable in intensity levels over years to decades. In situ energy-specific and temporally resolved spacecraft observations reveal an isolated third ring, or torus, of high-energy (>2 MeV) electrons that formed on 2 September 2012 and persisted largely unchanged in the geocentric radial range of 3.0 to ~3.5 Earth radii for more than 4 weeks before being disrupted (and virtually annihilated) by a powerful interplanetary shock wave passage.

Baker, D.; Kanekal, S.; Hoxie, V.; Henderson, M.; Li, X.; Spence, H.; Elkington, S.; Friedel, R.; Goldstein, J.; Hudson, M.; Reeves, G.; Thorne, R.; Kletzing, C.; Claudepierre, S.;

Published by: Science      Published on: 04/2013

YEAR: 2013     DOI: 10.1126/science.1233518

RBSP; Van Allen Probes