Browsing by Subject "MAGNETOPAUSE"

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  • Turc, L.; Fontaine, D.; Savoini, P.; Kilpua, E. K. J. (2014)
  • Plaschke, F.; Hietala, H.; Angelopoulos, V. (2013)
  • Turc, Lucile; Taryus, Vertti; Dimmock, Andrew P.; Battarbee, Markus; Ganse, Urs; Johlander, Andreas; Grandin, Maxime; Pfau-Kempf, Yann; Dubart, Maxime; Palmroth, Minna (2020)
    Bounded by the bow shock and the magnetopause, the magnetosheath forms the interface between solar wind and magnetospheric plasmas and regulates solar wind-magnetosphere coupling. Previous works have revealed pronounced dawn-dusk asymmetries in the magnetosheath properties. The dependence of these asymmetries on the upstream parameters remains however largely unknown. One of the main sources of these asymmetries is the bow shock configuration, which is typically quasi-parallel on the dawn side and quasi-perpendicular on the dusk side of the terrestrial magnetosheath because of the Parker spiral orientation of the interplanetary magnetic field (IMF) at Earth. Most of these previous studies rely on collections of spacecraft measurements associated with a wide range of upstream conditions which are processed in order to obtain average values of the magnetosheath parameters. In this work, we use a different approach and quantify the magnetosheath asymmetries in global hybrid-Vlasov simulations performed with the Vlasiator model. We concentrate on three parameters: the magnetic field strength, the plasma density, and the flow velocity. We find that the Vlasiator model reproduces the polarity of the asymmetries accurately but that their level tends to be higher than in spacecraft measurements, probably because the magnetosheath parameters are obtained from a single set of upstream conditions in the simulation, making the asymmetries more prominent. A set of three runs with different upstream conditions allows us to investigate for the first time how the asymmetries change when the angle between the IMF and the Sun-Earth line is reduced and when the Alfven Mach number decreases. We find that a more radial IMF results in a stronger magnetic field asymmetry and a larger variability of the magnetosheath density. In contrast, a lower Alfven Mach number leads to a reduced magnetic field asymmetry and a decrease in the variability of the magnetosheath density, the latter likely due to weaker foreshock processes. Our results highlight the strong impact of the quasi-parallel shock and its associated foreshock on global magnetosheath properties, in particular on the magnetosheath density, which is extremely sensitive to transient quasi-parallel shock processes, even with the perfectly steady upstream conditions in our simulations. This could explain the large variability of the density asymmetry levels obtained from spacecraft measurements in previous studies.
  • Akhavan-Tafti, M.; Palmroth, M.; Slavin, J. A.; Battarbee, M.; Ganse, U.; Grandin, M.; Le, G.; Gershman, D. J.; Eastwood, J. P.; Stawarz, J. E. (2020)
    The Vlasiator hybrid-Vlasov code was developed to investigate global magnetospheric dynamics at ion-kinetic scales. Here we focus on the role of magnetic reconnection in the formation and evolution of magnetic islands at the low-latitude magnetopause, under southward interplanetary magnetic field conditions. The simulation results indicate that (1) the magnetic reconnection ion kinetics, including the Earthward pointing Larmor electric field on the magnetospheric side of an X-point and anisotropic ion distributions, are well-captured by Vlasiator, thus enabling the study of reconnection-driven magnetic island evolution processes, (2) magnetic islands evolve due to continuous reconnection at adjacent X-points, "coalescence" which refers to the merging of neighboring islands to create a larger island, "erosion" during which an island loses magnetic flux due to reconnection, and "division" which involves the splitting of an island into smaller islands, and (3) continuous reconnection at adjacent X-points is the dominant source of magnetic flux and plasma to the outer layers of magnetic islands resulting in cross-sectional growth rates up to + 0.3 R-E(2)/min. The simulation results are compared to the Magnetospheric Multiscale (MMS) measurements of a chain of ion-scale flux transfer events (FTEs) sandwiched between two dominant X-lines. The MMS measurements similarly reveal (1) anisotropic ion populations and (2) normalized reconnection rate similar to 0.18, in agreement with theory and the Vlasiator predictions. Based on the simulation results and the MMS measurements, it is estimated that the observed ion-scale FTEs may grow Earth-sized within similar to 10 min, which is comparable to the average transport time for FTEs formed in the subsolar region to the high-latitude magnetopause. Future simulations shall revisit reconnection-driven island evolution processes with improved spatial resolutions.
  • Khotyaintsev, Yu; Graham, D. B.; Steinvall, K.; Alm, L.; Vaivads, A.; Johlander, A.; Norgren, C.; Li, W.; Divin, A.; Fu, H. S.; Hwang, K-J; Burch, J. L.; Ahmadi, N.; Le Contel, O.; Gershman, D. J.; Russell, C. T.; Torbert, R. B. (2020)
    We report electrostatic Debye-scale turbulence developing within the diffusion region of asymmetric magnetopause reconnection with amoderate guide field using observations by the Magnetospheric Multiscale mission. We show that Buneman waves and beam modes cause efficient and fast thermalization of the reconnection electron jet by irreversible phase mixing, during which the jet kinetic energy is transferred into thermal energy. Our results show that the reconnection diffusion region in the presence of a moderate guide field is highly turbulent, and that electrostatic turbulence plays an important role in electron heating.
  • Pulkkinen, T. I.; Dimmock, A. P.; Lakka, A.; Osmane, A.; Kilpua, E.; Myllys, M.; Tanskanen, E. I.; Viljanen, A. (2016)
    We examine the role of the magnetosheath in solar wind-magnetosphere-ionosphere coupling using the Time History of Events and Macroscale Interactions during Substorms plasma and magnetic field observations in the magnetosheath together with OMNI solar wind data and auroral electrojet recordings from the International Monitor for Auroral Geomagnetic Effects (IMAGE) magnetometer chain. We demonstrate that the electric field and Poynting flux reaching the magnetopause are not linear functions of the electric field and Poynting flux observed in the solar wind: the electric field and Poynting flux at the magnetopause during higher driving conditions are lower than those predicted from a linear function. We also show that the Poynting flux normal to the magnetopause is linearly correlated with the directly driven part of the auroral electrojets in the ionosphere. This indicates that the energy entering the magnetosphere in the form of the Poynting flux is directly responsible for driving the electrojets. Furthermore, we argue that the polar cap potential saturation discussed in the literature is associated with the way solar wind plasma gets processed during the bow shock crossing and motion within the magnetosheath.
  • Palmroth, Minna; Raptis, Savvas; Suni, Jonas; Karlsson, Tomas; Turc, Lucile; Johlander, Andreas; Ganse, Urs; Pfau-Kempf, Yann; Blanco-Cano, Xochitl; Akhavan-Tafti, Mojtaba; Battarbee, Markus; Dubart, Maxime; Grandin, Maxime; Tarvus, Vertti; Osmane, Adnane (2021)
    Magnetosheath jets are regions of high dynamic pressure, which can traverse from the bow shock towards the magnetopause. Recent modelling efforts, limited to a single jet and a single set of upstream conditions, have provided the first estimations about how the jet parameters behave as a function of position within the magnetosheath. Here we expand the earlier results by doing the first statistical investigation of the jet dimensions and parameters as a function of their lifetime within the magnetosheath. To verify the simulation behaviour, we first identify jets from Magnetosphere Multiscale (MMS) spacecraft data (6142 in total) and confirm the Vlasiator jet general behaviour using statistics of 924 simulated individual jets. We find that the jets in the simulation are in quantitative agreement with the observations, confirming earlier findings related to jets using Vlasiator. The jet density, dynamic pressure, and magnetic field intensity show a sharp jump at the bow shock, which decreases towards the magnetopause. The jets appear compressive and cooler than the magnetosheath at the bow shock, while during their propagation towards the magnetopause they thermalise. Further, the shape of the jets flatten as they progress through the magnetosheath. They are able to maintain their flow velocity and direction within the magnetosheath flow, and they end up preferentially to the side of the magnetosheath behind the quasi-parallel shock. Finally, we find that Vlasiator jets during low solar wind Alfven Mach number M-A are shorter in duration, smaller in their extent, and weaker in terms of dynamic pressure and magnetic field intensity as compared to the jets during high M-A.
  • Palmroth, Minna; Hietala, Heli; Plaschke, Ferdinand; Archer, Martin; Karlsson, Tomas; Blanco-Cano, Xochitl; Sibeck, David; Kajdic, Primoz; Ganse, Urs; Pfau-Kempf, Yann; Battarbee, Markus; Turc, Lucile (2018)
    We use a global hybrid-Vlasov simulation for the magnetosphere, Vlasiator, to investigate magnetosheath high-speed jets. Unlike many other hybrid-kinetic simulations, Vlasiator includes an unscaled geomagnetic dipole, indicating that the simulation spatial and temporal dimensions can be given in SI units without scaling. Thus, for the first time, this allows investigating the magnetosheath jet properties and comparing them directly with the observed jets within the Earth's magnetosheath. In the run shown in this paper, the interplanetary magnetic field (IMF) cone angle is 30 degrees, and a foreshock develops upstream of the quasi-parallel magnetosheath. We visually detect a structure with high dynamic pressure propagating from the bow shock through the magnetosheath. The structure is confirmed as a jet using three different criteria, which have been adopted in previous observational studies. We compare these criteria against the simulation results. We find that the magnetosheath jet is an elongated structure extending earthward from the bow shock by similar to 2.6 R-E, while its size perpendicular to the direction of propagation is similar to 0.5 R-E. We also investigate the jet evolution and find that the jet originates due to the interaction of the bow shock with a high-dynamic-pressure structure that reproduces observational features associated with a short, large-amplitude magnetic structure (SLAMS). The simulation shows that magnetosheath jets can develop also under steady IMF, as inferred by observational studies. To our knowledge, this paper therefore shows the first global kinetic simulation of a magnetosheath jet, which is in accordance with three observational jet criteria and is caused by a SLAMS advecting towards the bow shock.
  • Takahashi, Kazue; Turc, Lucile; Kilpua, Emilia; Takahashi, Naoko; Dimmock, Andrew P.; Kajdic, Primoz; Palmroth, Minna; Pfau-Kempf, Yann; Souček, Jan; Motoba, Tetsuo; Hartinger, Michael D.; Artemyev, Anton; Singer, Howard; Ganse, Urs; Battarbee, Markus (2021)
    We have examined the properties of ultralow-frequency (ULF) waves in space (the ion foreshock, magnetosheath, and magnetosphere) and at dayside magnetometer stations (L = 1.6-6.5) during Earth's encounter with a magnetic cloud in the solar wind, which is characterized by magnetic fields with large magnitudes (similar to 14 nT) and small cone angles (similar to 30 degrees). In the foreshock, waves were excited at similar to 90 m Hz as expected from theory, but there were oscillations at other frequencies as well. Oscillations near 90 mHz were detected at the other locations in space, but they were not in general the most dominant oscillations. On the ground, pulsations in the approximate Pc2-Pc4 band (5 mHz-120 mHz) were continuously detected at all stations, with no outstanding spectral peaks near 90 mHz in the H component except at stations where the frequency of the third harmonic of standing Alfven waves had this frequency. The fundamental toroidal wave frequency was below 90 mHz at all stations. In the D component spectra, a minor spectral peak is found near 90 mHz at stations located at L <3, and the power dropped abruptly above this frequency. Magnetospheric compressional wave power was much weaker on the nightside. A hybrid-Vlasov simulation indicates that foreshock ULF waves have short spatial scale lengths and waves transmitted into the magnetosphere are strongly attenuated away from noon.
  • Ala-Lahti, Matti M.; Kilpua, Emilia K. J.; Dimmock, Andrew P.; Osmane, Adnane; Pulkkinen, Tuija; Soucek, Jan (2018)
    We present a comprehensive statistical analysis of mirror mode waves and the properties of their plasma surroundings in sheath regions driven by interplanetary coronal mass ejection (ICME). We have constructed a semi-automated method to identify mirror modes from the magnetic field data. We analyze 91 ICME sheath regions from January 1997 to April 2015 using data from the Wind spacecraft. The results imply that similarly to planetary magnetosheaths, mirror modes are also common structures in ICME sheaths. However, they occur almost exclusively as dip-like structures and in mirror stable plasma. We observe mirror modes throughout the sheath, from the bow shock to the ICME leading edge, but their amplitudes are largest closest to the shock. We also find that the shock strength (measured by Alfven Mach number) is the most important parameter in controlling the occurrence of mirror modes. Our findings suggest that in ICME sheaths the dominant source of free energy for mirror mode generation is the shock compression. We also suggest that mirror modes that are found deeper in the sheath are remnants from earlier times of the sheath evolution, generated also in the vicinity of the shock.
  • Lakka, A.; Pulkkinen, T. I.; Dimmock, A. P.; Myllys, M.; Honkonen, I.; Palmroth, M. (2018)
    It is well known that the Earth's ionospheric cross-polar cap potential (CPCP) saturates as a response to the solar wind (SW) driver especially when the level of driving is high and the interplanetary magnetic field is oriented southward. Moreover, previous studies have shown that the upstream Alfven Mach number may be an important factor in the saturation effect. While the CPCP is often viewed as a measure of the SW-magnetosphere-ionosphere coupling, the processes associated with the nonlinearity of the coupling remain an open issue. We use fourth edition of the Grand Unified Magnetosphere-Ionosphere Coupling Simulation (GUMICS-4) and artificial SW data to mimic weak and strong driving in order to study the CPCP response to a wide range of interplanetary magnetic field magnitudes (3.5-30 nT) and upstream Alfven Mach number values (1.2-22). The results provide the first overview of the CPCP saturation in GUMICS-4 and show that the onset of saturation is strongly dependent on the upstream Alfven Mach number and the physical processes responsible for the saturation effect might take place both in the Earth's magnetosheath and in the upstream SW.
  • Lakka, Antti; Pulkkinen, Tuija I.; Dimmock, Andrew P.; Osmane, Adnane; Honkonen, Ilja; Palmroth, Minna; Janhunen, Pekka (2017)
    We investigate the effects of different initialisation methods of the GUMICS-4 global magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) simulation to the dynamics in different parts of the Earth's magnetosphere and hence compare five 12 h simulation runs that were initiated by 3 h of synthetic data and followed by 9 h of solar wind measurements using the OMNI data as input. As a reference, we use a simulation run that includes nearly 60 h of OMNI data as input prior to the 9 h interval examined with different initialisations. The selected interval is a high-speed stream event during a 10-day interval (12-22 June 2007). The synthetic initialisations include stepwise, linear and sinusoidal functions of the interplanetary magnetic field with constant density and velocity values. The results show that the solutions converge within 1 h to give a good agreement in both the bow shock and the magnetopause position. However, the different initialisation methods lead to local differences which should be taken into consideration when comparing model results to satellite measurements.