Foreshock Compressive Structures as the Cause of Magnetosheath Jets

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Title: Foreshock Compressive Structures as the Cause of Magnetosheath Jets
Author: Suni, Jonas
Other contributor: Helsingin yliopisto, Matemaattis-luonnontieteellinen tiedekunta
University of Helsinki, Faculty of Science
Helsingfors universitet, Matematisk-naturvetenskapliga fakulteten
Publisher: Helsingin yliopisto
Date: 2021
Language: eng
Thesis level: master's thesis
Degree program: Alkeishiukkasfysiikan ja astrofysikaalisten tieteiden maisteriohjelma
Master's Programme in Particle physics and Astrophysical Sciences
Magisterprogrammet i elementarpartikelfysik och astrofysikaliska vetenskaper
Specialisation: Astrofysikaaliset tieteet
Astrophysical Sciences
De astrofysikaliska vetenskaperna
Abstract: Magnetosheath jets are a class of structures in the Earth's magnetosheath usually defined by an enhancement of the dynamic pressure of the plasma. Magnetosheath jets have been observed by several different spacecraft over the past few decades, but their origin and formation mechanism have remained unclear. The aim of this thesis is to use data from a global simulation to investigate the origin of magnetosheath jets. We defined two different kinds of structures, magnetosheath jets and foreshock compressive structures (FCS), and collected a database of individual jets and FCSs from 4 Vlasiator global hybrid-Vlasov simulation runs, all of which simulate only the ecliptic plane. We then conducted a statistical analysis of the properties of jets and FCSs, and their occurrence rates as a function of the definition of the FCS criterion. Jets were separated into two categories: jets that form in contact with FCSs (FCS-jets), and those that do not (non-FCS-jets). We found that up to 75% of magnetosheath jets form in association with an FCS impacting the Earth's bow shock. We also found that FCS-jets penetrate deeper into the magnetosheath than non-FCS-jets. Finally, we found no conclusive explanation for the formation of non-FCS-jets. The properties of both jets and FCSs agree qualitatively and to some extent quantitatively with spacecraft observations and other simulations in the literature. The formation of jets from FCSs impacting the bow shock is similar to the proposed theory that jets are linked to Short Large-Amplitude Magnetic Structures (SLAMS). In the future, we will study magnetosheath jets and FCSs in polar plane simulation runs as well, and ultimately in full 3D simulation runs. If made possible by new simulations, the effects of electron kinetic effects on jets and FCSs will also be studied. Comparison studies with spacecraft observations of jet formation from FCSs will also be conducted, if and when such observations are found and become available.
Subject: Space physics
Bow shock
Magnetosheath jets

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