skip to main content


Title: Global three-dimensional simulation of Earth's dayside reconnection using a two-way coupled magnetohydrodynamics with embedded particle-in-cell model: initial results: 3D MHD-EPIC simulation of magnetosphere

Here, we perform a three-dimensional (3D) global simulation of Earth's magnetosphere with kinetic reconnection physics to study the flux transfer events (FTEs) and dayside magnetic reconnection with the recently developed magnetohydrodynamics with embedded particle-in-cell model (MHD-EPIC). During the one-hour long simulation, the FTEs are generated quasi-periodically near the subsolar point and move toward the poles. We also find the magnetic field signature of FTEs at their early formation stage is similar to a ‘crater FTE’, which is characterized by a magnetic field strength dip at the FTE center. After the FTE core field grows to a significant value, it becomes an FTE with typical flux rope structure. When an FTE moves across the cusp, reconnection between the FTE field lines and the cusp field lines can dissipate the FTE. The kinetic features are also captured by our model. A crescent electron phase space distribution is found near the reconnection site. A similar distribution is found for ions at the location where the Larmor electric field appears. The lower hybrid drift instability (LHDI) along the current sheet direction also arises at the interface of magnetosheath and magnetosphere plasma. Finally, the LHDI electric field is about 8 mV/m and its dominant wavelengthmore » relative to the electron gyroradius agrees reasonably with MMS observations.« less
 [1] ; ORCiD logo [1] ; ORCiD logo [2] ; ORCiD logo [3] ;  [1] ; ORCiD logo [3] ;  [4] ;  [4] ; ORCiD logo [5] ; ORCiD logo [5]
  1. Univ. of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI (United States). Center for Space Environment Modeling
  2. West Virginia Univ., Morgantown, WV (United States). Dept. of Physics and Astronomy
  3. Center for Space Environment Modeling, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor MI USA
  4. KTH Royal Inst. of Technology, Stockholm (Sweden)
  5. Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States)
Publication Date:
Report Number(s):
Journal ID: ISSN 2169-9380
Grant/Contract Number:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Journal of Geophysical Research. Space Physics
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 122; Journal Issue: 10; Journal ID: ISSN 2169-9380
American Geophysical Union
Research Org:
Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation (NSF)
Country of Publication:
United States
58 GEOSCIENCES; Heliospheric and Magnetospheric Physics
OSTI Identifier: