In this work we present an analysis of the dynamics of suprathermal ions of different masses (H+, He+, O+) during prolonged dipolarizations in the near-Earth magnetotail (X>−17RE) according to Cluster/RAPID observations in 2001–2005. All dipolarizations from our database were associated with fast flow braking and consisted of multiple dipolarization fronts (DFs). We found statistically that fluxes of suprathermal ions started to increase ∼1 min before the dipolarization onset and continued to grow for ∼1 min after the onset. The start of flux growth coincided with the beginning of a decrease in the spectral index γ. The decrease in γ was observed for protons for ∼1 min after the dipolarization onset, and for He+ and O+ ions for ∼3 and ∼5 min after the onset respectively. The negative variations of γ for O+ ions were ∼2.5 times larger than for light ions. This demonstrates more efficient acceleration for heavy ions. The strong negative variations of γ were observed in finite energy ranges for all ion components. This indicates the possibility of nonadiabatic resonant acceleration of ions in the course of their interaction with multiple DFs during dipolarizations. Our analysis showed that some fraction of light ions can be accelerated up to energies ≥600 keV and some fraction of oxygen ions can be accelerated up to ∼1.2 MeV. Such strong energy gains cannot be explained by acceleration at a single propagating DF and suggest the possibility of multistage ion acceleration in the course of their interaction with multiple DFs during the prolonged dipolarizations.
A beam pulsed amplifier mechanism responsible for effective amplification of short very low frequency (VLF) electromagnetic pulses is proposed. Effective amplification near the magnetic equator outside the plasmasphere is considered. A conditional growth rate of short electromagnetic pulses is calculated. Obtained results can explain some important features of the oblique electromagnetic chorus emissions without hiss-like radiation background.
The fortunate location of Cluster and the THEMIS P3 probe in the near-Earth plasma sheet (PS) (at X ∼ −7–−9 RE) allowed for the multipoint analysis of properties and spectra of electron and proton injections. The injections were observed during dipolarization and substorm current wedge formation associated with braking of multiple bursty bulk flows (BBFs). In the course of dipolarization, a gradual growth of the BZ magnetic field lasted ∼ 13 min and it was comprised of several BZ pulses or dipolarization fronts (DFs) with duration ≤ 1 min. Multipoint observations have shown that the beginning of the increase in suprathermal (> 50 keV) electron fluxes – the injection boundary – was observed in the PS simultaneously with the dipolarization onset and it propagated dawnward along with the onset-related DF. The subsequent dynamics of the energetic electron flux was sim-ilar to the dynamics of the magnetic field during the dipolar-ization. Namely, a gradual linear growth of the electron flux occurred simultaneously with the gradual growth of the BZ field, and it was comprised of multiple short (∼ few min-utes) electron injections associated with the BZ pulses. This behavior can be explained by the combined action of local betatron acceleration at the BZ pulses and subsequent gra-dient drifts of electrons in the flux pile up region through the numerous braking and diverting DFs. The nonadiabatic features occasionally observed in the electron spectra during the injections can be due to the electron interactions with high-frequency electromagnetic or electrostatic fluctuations transiently observed in the course of dipolarization.
We examine speciﬁc features of the realisation of the beam pulse ampliﬁer (BPA) mechanism of chorus excitation in the density ducts that have a width of the order of 100– 300 km with refractive reﬂection.The dispersion characteristics of whistler emissions in a planar duct under conditions for the fulﬁlment of the Wentzel–Kramers–Brillouin (WKB) approximation and refractive reﬂection from the “walls” of the duct are analysed. It is shown that in the enhanced duct, discrete spectral elements of chorus with a narrow angular spectrum along the external magnetic ﬁeld can be excited at frequencies somewhat lower than half of the electron cyclotron frequency. In the depleted duct at frequencies somewhat higher than half of the electron cyclotron frequency, chorus with a narrow angular spectrum along the magnetic ﬁeld can be excited. The proposed model explains the possibility of excitation of chorus with small angles of the wave normal when the BPA mechanism is implemented.It is noted that the properties of chorus, such as the intensity and a typical angle of the wave normal, can be different for the lowerand upper-band chorus.
Observations of Earth's bow shock during high-β (ratio of thermal to magnetic pressure) solar wind streams are rare. However, such shocks are ubiquitous in astrophysical plasmas. Typical solar wind parameters related to high β (here β>10) are as follows: low speed, high density, and a very low interplanetary magnetic field of 1–2 nT. These conditions are usually quite transient and need to be verified immediately upstream of the observed shock crossings. In this report, three characteristic crossings by the Cluster project (from the 22 found) are studied using multipoint analysis, allowing us to determine spatial scales. The main magnetic field and density spatial scale of about a couple of hundred of kilometers generally corresponds to the increased proton convective gyroradius. Observed magnetic variations are different from those for supercritical shocks, with β∼1. Dominant magnetic variations in the shock transition have amplitudes much larger than the background field and have a frequency of ∼ 0.3–0.5 Hz (in some events – 1–2 Hz). The wave polarization has no stable phase and is closer to linear, which complicates the determination of the wave propagation direction. Spatial scales (wavelengths) of variations are within several tens to a couple of hundred of kilometers.
Simultaneous records of VLF (very low frequencies) emissions have been carried out at two ground-based stations located at similar geomagnetic latitudes near L ~ 5.5 and spaced in the longitude by ~ 400 km, Kannuslehto (KAN) in Finland and Lovozero (LOZ) in Russia, using quite similar VLF receivers with two calibrated orthogonal air-core loop antennas. We found that the general spectral properties of the VLF chorus emissions at these two stations were similar and typically have right-hand polarization. Contrary to VLF chorus, the short-period VLF emissions (periodic emissions, PE) in which separated spectral elements are repeated with the periodicity of 3-4 s were mostly left-hand polarized. Usually, these waves propagated in the north-south direction. We suppose that PEs are generated inside of the plasmasphere by the cyclotron instability under a quasi-linear relaxation of the energetic electron distribution function. However, sometimes PE occurred only at an individual station. We speculated that this could be due to the influence of the local inhomogeneities to the VLF waves during the propagation through the ionospheric trough to the ground. Unusual series of short-duration (10-100 s) bursts of VLF emissions, lasting several hours, were also found in the morning under very quiet geomagnetic conditions (Kp ~ 0-1). Generally, these emissions were observed simultaneously at KAN and LOZ showing both right-hand and left-hand polarization, and different arrival directions provided the rather extended ionospheric exit area.
We propose a simple explanation of the prolonged existence of pancake-like electron velocity distributions inthe radiation belts. The pancake-like distribution function is characterized by a longitudinal particle velocity (along themagnetic field) of the order of the thermal velocity of the background plasma. The parameters of the tablet-like distribution function with a characteristic longitudinal particle velocity of the order of 20 Alfvèn velocities are refined. Such distribution functions can occur in the middle magnetosphere near the magnetic equator with appropriate sources of energetic particles. The stability of these distributions is examined. The results agree with known experimental data.
The problems of reflection and transmission of a whistler wave incident in the nighttime ionosphere from above are considered. Numerical solution of the wave equations for a typical condition of the lower ionosphere is found. The solution area comprises both the region of strong wave refraction and a sharp boundary of the nighttime ionosphere ( 100 km). The energy reflection coefficient and horizontal wave magnetic field on the ground surface are calculated. The results obtained are important for analysis of the extremely low-frequency and very low-frequency (ELF–VLF) emission phenomena observed from both the satellites and the ground-based observatories.