Magnetotail boundary crossings at lunar distances: ARTEMIS observations


Akay I. G. , Kaymaz Z. , Sibeck D. G.

JOURNAL OF ATMOSPHERIC AND SOLAR-TERRESTRIAL PHYSICS, cilt.182, ss.45-60, 2019 (SCI İndekslerine Giren Dergi) identifier identifier

  • Cilt numarası: 182
  • Basım Tarihi: 2019
  • Doi Numarası: 10.1016/j.jastp.2018.11.002
  • Dergi Adı: JOURNAL OF ATMOSPHERIC AND SOLAR-TERRESTRIAL PHYSICS
  • Sayfa Sayıları: ss.45-60

Özet

We compare results from a preliminary analysis of two years of ARTEMIS magnetopause boundary crossings at lunar distances with available empirical models. We remove the effects of variable solar wind flow directions and aberration angles to study the magnetotail cross-section as a function of solar wind conditions. The average magnetopause distance from the central axis is 26 R-E, but this distance ranges from 10 R-E for high solar wind dynamic pressures and strong northward IMF orientations to 39 R-E for low solar wind dynamic pressures and weak southward IMF orientations compared to the nominal solar wind conditions. The time-independent Howe and Binsack (1972) model describes the average location of the crossings very well. For high solar wind dynamic pressures, the Lu et al., (2011) model performs best, while for low pressures the Petrinec and Russell (1996) model gives the closest prediction. As predicted by theory and seen in past studies, the magnetotail cross-section is suggestive of prolate during intervals of strong IMF By, but oblate during intervals of strong IMF Bz. Any asymmetric variation of the tail boundary with respect to the sign of IMF By was not observed. The decreasing size of boundary with the increasing dynamic pressure was found when dynamic pressures are smaller than 2 nPa. Although the scatter is larger, the tail size for pressures larger than 2 nPa suggests a constant radius. The tail boundary size decreases as the strength of IMF Bz increases regardless of its polarity. However, it was also observed that an even stronger southward IMF Bz can cause larger magnetopause size in the presence of large dynamic pressures.

We compare results from a preliminary analysis of two years of ARTEMIS magnetopause boundary crossings at lunar distances with available empirical models. We remove the effects of variable solar wind flow directions and aberration angles to study the magnetotail cross-section as a function of solar wind conditions. The average magnetopause distance from the central axis is 26 RE, but this distance ranges from 10 RE for high solar wind dynamic pressures and strong northward IMF orientations to 39 RE for low solar wind dynamic pressures and weak southward IMF orientations compared to the nominal solar wind conditions. The time-independent Howe and Binsack (1972) model describes the average location of the crossings very well. For high solar wind dynamic pressures, the Lu et al., (2011) model performs best, while for low pressures the Petrinec and Russell (1996) model gives the closest prediction. As predicted by theory and seen in past studies, the magnetotail cross-section is suggestive of prolate during intervals of strong IMF By, but oblate during intervals of strong IMF Bz. Any asymmetric variation of the tail boundary with respect to the sign of IMF By was not observed. The decreasing size of boundary with the increasing dynamic pressure was found when dynamic pressures are smaller than 2?nPa. Although the scatter is larger, the tail size for pressures larger than 2?nPa suggests a constant radius. The tail boundary size decreases as the strength of IMF Bz increases regardless of its polarity. However, it was also observed that an even stronger southward IMF Bz can cause larger magnetopause size in the presence of large dynamic pressures.