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Found 4 entries in the Bibliography.

Showing entries from 1 through 4


The Roles of the Magnetopause and Plasmapause in Storm-Time ULF Wave Power Enhancements

Abstract Ultra Low Frequency (ULF) waves play a crucial role in transporting and coupling energy within the magnetosphere. During geomagnetic storms, dayside magnetospheric ULF wave power is highly variable with strong enhancements that are dominated by elevated solar wind driving. However, the radial distribution of ULF wave power is complex - controlled interdependently by external solar wind driving and the internal magnetospheric structuring. We conducted a statistical analysis of observed storm-time ULF wave power from the Van Allen Probes spacecraft within 2012 - 2016. Focusing on the dayside (06 < Magnetic Local Time ≤ 15), we observe large enhancements across 3 < L < 6 and a steep L dependence during the main phase. We consider how accounting for concurrent magnetopause and plasmapause locations may reduce statistical variability and improve parameterisation of spatial trends over and above using the L value. Ordering storm time ULF wave power by L provides the weakest dependences from those considered, whereas ordering by distance from the magnetopause is more effective. We also explore dependences on local plasma density and find that spatially localised ULF wave power enhancements are confined within high density patches in the afternoon sector (likely plasmaspheric plumes). The results have critical implications for empirical models of ULF wave power and radial diffusion coefficients. We highlight the necessity of improved characterisation of the highly distorted storm-time cold plasma density distribution, in order to more accurately predict ULF wave power.

Sandhu, J.; Rae, I.; Staples, F.; Hartley, D.; Walach, M.-T.; Elsden, T.; Murphy, K.;

Published by: Journal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics      Published on: 06/2021

YEAR: 2021     DOI:

ULF waves; Geomagnetic storms; Van Allen Probes; radial diffusion; inner magnetosphere; plasmasphere

ULF Wave Driven Radial Diffusion During Geomagnetic Storms: A statistical analysis of Van Allen Probes observations

Abstract The impact of radial diffusion in storm time radiation belt dynamics is well-debated. In this study we quantify the changes and variability in radial diffusion coefficients during geomagnetic storms. A statistical analysis of Van Allen Probes data (2012 − 2019) is conducted to obtain measurements of the magnetic and electric power spectral densities for Ultra Low Frequency (ULF) waves, and corresponding radial diffusion coefficients. The results show global wave power enhancements occur during the storm main phase, and continue into the recovery phase. Local time asymmetries show sources of wave power are both external solar wind driving and internal sources from coupling with ring current ions and substorms. Wave power enhancements are also observed at low L values (L < 4). The accessibility of wave power to low L is attributed to a depression of the Alfvén continuum. The increased wave power drives enhancements in both the magnetic and electric field diffusion coefficients by more than an order of magnitude. Significant variability in diffusion coefficients is observed, with values ranging over several orders of magnitude. A comparison to the Kp parameterised empirical model of Ozeke et al. (2014) is conducted and indicates important differences during storm times. Although the electric field diffusion coefficient is relatively well described by the empirical model, the magnetic field diffusion coefficient is approximately ∼ 10 times larger than predicted. We discuss how differences could be attributed to dataset limitations and assumptions. Alternative storm-time radial diffusion coefficients are provided as a function of L* and storm phase.

Sandhu, J.; Rae, I.; Wygant, J.; Breneman, A.; Tian, S.; Watt, C.; Horne, R.; Ozeke, L.; Georgiou, M.; Walach, M.-T.;

Published by: Journal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics      Published on: 03/2021

YEAR: 2021     DOI:

ULF waves; radial diffusion; outer radiation belt; Van Allen Probes; Geomagnetic storms

Challenging the Use of Ring Current Indices During Geomagnetic Storms

Abstract The ring current experiences dramatic enhancements during geomagnetic storms, however understanding the global distribution of ring current energy content is restricted by spacecraft coverage. Many studies use ring current indices as a proxy for energy content, but these indices average over spatial variations and include additional contributions. We have conducted an analysis of Van Allen Probes’ data, identifying the spatial distribution and storm-time variations of energy content. Ion observations from the HOPE and RBSPICE instruments were used to estimate energy content in L-MLT bins. The results show large enhancements particularly in the premidnight sector during the main phase, alongside reductions in local time asymmetry and intensity during the recovery phase. A comparison with estimated energy content using the Sym-H index was conducted. In agreement with previous results, the Sym-H index significantly overestimates (by up to ∼ 4 times) the energy content, and we attribute the difference to contributions from additional current systems. A new finding is an observed temporal discrepancy, where energy content estimates from the Sym-H index maximise 3 to 9 hours earlier than in situ observations. Case studies reveal a complex relationship, where variable degrees of agreement between the Sym-H index and in situ measurements are observed. The results highlight the drawbacks of ring current indices and emphasise the variability of the storm time ring current.

Sandhu, J.; Rae, I.; Walach, M.-T.;

Published by: Journal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics      Published on: 01/2021

YEAR: 2021     DOI:

ring current; Geomagnetic storms; Van Allen Probes; inner magnetosphere; substorms


Substorm-Ring Current Coupling: A Comparison of Isolated and Compound Substorms

Substorms are a highly variable process, which can occur as an isolated event or as part of a sequence of multiple substorms (compound substorms). In this study we identify how the low-energy population of the ring current and subsequent energization varies for isolated substorms compared to the first substorm of a compound event. Using observations of H+ and O+ ions (1 eV to 50 keV) from the Helium Oxygen Proton Electron instrument onboard Van Allen Probe A, we determine the energy content of the ring current in L-MLT space. We observe that the ring current energy content is significantly enhanced during compound substorms as compared to isolated substorms by \~20\textendash30\%. Furthermore, we observe a significantly larger magnitude of energization (by \~40\textendash50\%) following the onset of compound substorms relative to isolated substorms. Analysis suggests that the differences predominantly arise due to a sustained enhancement in dayside driving associated with compound substorms compared to isolated substorms. The strong solar wind driving prior to onset results in important differences in the time history of the magnetosphere, generating significantly different ring current conditions and responses to substorms. The observations reveal information about the substorm injected population and the transport of the plasma in the inner magnetosphere.

Sandhu, J.; Rae, I.; Freeman, M.; Gkioulidou, M.; Forsyth, C.; Reeves, G.; Murphy, K.; Walach, M.-T.;

Published by: Journal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics      Published on: 08/2019

YEAR: 2019     DOI: 10.1029/2019JA026766

inner magnetosphere; ring current; substorms; Van Allen; Van Allen Probes