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Title: Electron Bulk Acceleration and Thermalization at Earth’s Quasiperpendicular Bow Shock [Electron Acceleration and Thermalization at Earth's Quasi-Perpendicular Bow Shock]

Electron heating at Earth’s quasiperpendicular bow shock has been surmised to be due to the combined effects of a quasistatic electric potential and scattering through wave-particle interaction. Here we report the observation of electron distribution functions indicating a new electron heating process occurring at the leading edge of the shock front. Incident solar wind electrons are accelerated parallel to the magnetic field toward downstream, reaching an electron-ion relative drift speed exceeding the electron thermal speed. The bulk acceleration is associated with an electric field pulse embedded in a whistler-mode wave. The high electron-ion relative drift is relaxed primarily through a nonlinear current-driven instability. Here, the relaxed distributions contain a beam traveling toward the shock as a remnant of the accelerated electrons. Similar distribution functions prevail throughout the shock transition layer, suggesting that the observed acceleration and thermalization is essential to the cross-shock electron heating.
Authors:
 [1] ;  [1] ;  [2] ;  [3] ;  [1] ;  [2] ;  [2] ;  [2] ;  [3] ;  [3] ;  [3] ;  [4] ;  [5] ;  [5] ;  [5] ;  [6] ;  [2] ;  [6] ;  [2] ;  [7] more »;  [2] ;  [2] ;  [3] ;  [3] ;  [8] ;  [9] ;  [10] ;  [11] ;  [1] ;  [5] ;  [12] ;  [1] « less
  1. NASA Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC), Greenbelt, MD (United States); Univ. of Maryland, College Park, MD (United States)
  2. NASA Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC), Greenbelt, MD (United States)
  3. Univ. of Colorado, Boulder, CO (United States)
  4. Univ. of Bergen, Bergen (Norway)
  5. Univ. of California, Los Angeles, CA (United States)
  6. Southwest Research Institute, San Antonio, TX (United States)
  7. Denali Scientific, Healy, AK (United States)
  8. Univ. de Toulouse (UPS), Toulouse (France)
  9. CNRS/Ecole Polytechnique/Sorbonne Univ./Univ. Paris Sud/Observatoire de Paris, Palaiseau Cedex (France)
  10. Swedish Institute of Space Physics, Uppsala (Sweden)
  11. KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm (Sweden)
  12. Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States)
Publication Date:
Report Number(s):
LA-UR-18-26991
Journal ID: ISSN 0031-9007; PRLTAO
Grant/Contract Number:
AC52-06NA25396; DESC0016278
Type:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Physical Review Letters
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 120; Journal Issue: 22; Journal ID: ISSN 0031-9007
Publisher:
American Physical Society (APS)
Research Org:
Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE Laboratory Directed Research and Development (LDRD) Program
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
70 PLASMA PHYSICS AND FUSION TECHNOLOGY
OSTI Identifier:
1477703
Alternate Identifier(s):
OSTI ID: 1439741

Chen, L. -J., Wang, S., Wilson, III, L. B., Schwartz, S., Bessho, N., Moore, T., Gershman, D., Giles, B., Malaspina, D., Wilder, F. D., Ergun, R. E., Hesse, M., Lai, H., Russell, C., Strangeway, R., Torbert, R. B., -Vinas, A. F., Burch, J., Lee, S., Pollock, C., Dorelli, J., Paterson, W., Ahmadi, N., Goodrich, K., Lavraud, B., Le Contel, O., Khotyaintsev, Yu. V., Lindqvist, P. -A., Boardsen, S., Wei, H., Le, A., and Avanov, L.. Electron Bulk Acceleration and Thermalization at Earth’s Quasiperpendicular Bow Shock [Electron Acceleration and Thermalization at Earth's Quasi-Perpendicular Bow Shock]. United States: N. p., Web. doi:10.1103/PhysRevLett.120.225101.
Chen, L. -J., Wang, S., Wilson, III, L. B., Schwartz, S., Bessho, N., Moore, T., Gershman, D., Giles, B., Malaspina, D., Wilder, F. D., Ergun, R. E., Hesse, M., Lai, H., Russell, C., Strangeway, R., Torbert, R. B., -Vinas, A. F., Burch, J., Lee, S., Pollock, C., Dorelli, J., Paterson, W., Ahmadi, N., Goodrich, K., Lavraud, B., Le Contel, O., Khotyaintsev, Yu. V., Lindqvist, P. -A., Boardsen, S., Wei, H., Le, A., & Avanov, L.. Electron Bulk Acceleration and Thermalization at Earth’s Quasiperpendicular Bow Shock [Electron Acceleration and Thermalization at Earth's Quasi-Perpendicular Bow Shock]. United States. doi:10.1103/PhysRevLett.120.225101.
Chen, L. -J., Wang, S., Wilson, III, L. B., Schwartz, S., Bessho, N., Moore, T., Gershman, D., Giles, B., Malaspina, D., Wilder, F. D., Ergun, R. E., Hesse, M., Lai, H., Russell, C., Strangeway, R., Torbert, R. B., -Vinas, A. F., Burch, J., Lee, S., Pollock, C., Dorelli, J., Paterson, W., Ahmadi, N., Goodrich, K., Lavraud, B., Le Contel, O., Khotyaintsev, Yu. V., Lindqvist, P. -A., Boardsen, S., Wei, H., Le, A., and Avanov, L.. 2018. "Electron Bulk Acceleration and Thermalization at Earth’s Quasiperpendicular Bow Shock [Electron Acceleration and Thermalization at Earth's Quasi-Perpendicular Bow Shock]". United States. doi:10.1103/PhysRevLett.120.225101.
@article{osti_1477703,
title = {Electron Bulk Acceleration and Thermalization at Earth’s Quasiperpendicular Bow Shock [Electron Acceleration and Thermalization at Earth's Quasi-Perpendicular Bow Shock]},
author = {Chen, L. -J. and Wang, S. and Wilson, III, L. B. and Schwartz, S. and Bessho, N. and Moore, T. and Gershman, D. and Giles, B. and Malaspina, D. and Wilder, F. D. and Ergun, R. E. and Hesse, M. and Lai, H. and Russell, C. and Strangeway, R. and Torbert, R. B. and -Vinas, A. F. and Burch, J. and Lee, S. and Pollock, C. and Dorelli, J. and Paterson, W. and Ahmadi, N. and Goodrich, K. and Lavraud, B. and Le Contel, O. and Khotyaintsev, Yu. V. and Lindqvist, P. -A. and Boardsen, S. and Wei, H. and Le, A. and Avanov, L.},
abstractNote = {Electron heating at Earth’s quasiperpendicular bow shock has been surmised to be due to the combined effects of a quasistatic electric potential and scattering through wave-particle interaction. Here we report the observation of electron distribution functions indicating a new electron heating process occurring at the leading edge of the shock front. Incident solar wind electrons are accelerated parallel to the magnetic field toward downstream, reaching an electron-ion relative drift speed exceeding the electron thermal speed. The bulk acceleration is associated with an electric field pulse embedded in a whistler-mode wave. The high electron-ion relative drift is relaxed primarily through a nonlinear current-driven instability. Here, the relaxed distributions contain a beam traveling toward the shock as a remnant of the accelerated electrons. Similar distribution functions prevail throughout the shock transition layer, suggesting that the observed acceleration and thermalization is essential to the cross-shock electron heating.},
doi = {10.1103/PhysRevLett.120.225101},
journal = {Physical Review Letters},
number = 22,
volume = 120,
place = {United States},
year = {2018},
month = {5}
}