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Direct evidence of the pitch angle scattering of relativistic electrons induced by EMIC waves

AuthorZhu, Hui; Chen, Lunjin; Claudepierre, Seth; Zheng, Liheng;
KeywordsEMIC waves; nonlinear wave-particle interaction; pitch angle scattering; Van Allen Probes
AbstractIn this study, we analyze an EMIC wave event of rising tone elements recorded by the Van Allen Probes. The pitch angle distributions of relativistic electrons exhibit a direct response to the two elements of EMIC waves: at the intermediate pitch angle the fluxes are lower and at the low pitch angle the fluxes are higher than those when no EMIC was observed. In particular, the observed changes in the pitch angle distributions are most likely to be caused by nonlinear wave particle interaction. The calculation of the minimum resonant energy and a test particle simulation based on the observed EMIC waves support the role of the nonlinear wave-particle interaction in the pitch angle scattering. This study provides direct evidence for the nonlinear pitch angle scattering of electrons by EMIC waves.
Year of Publication2020
JournalGeophysical Research Letters
Number of Pages
Date Published01/2020