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Title: Explosive Magnetotail Activity

Abstract

Modes and manifestations of the explosive activity in the Earth’s magnetotail, as well as its onset mechanisms and key pre-onset conditions are reviewed. Two mechanisms for the generation of the pre-onset current sheet are discussed, namely magnetic flux addition to the tail lobes, or other high-latitude perturbations, and magnetic flux evacuation from the near-Earth tail associated with dayside reconnection. Reconnection onset may require stretching and thinning of the sheet down to electron scales. It may also start in thicker sheets in regions with a tailward gradient of the equatorial magnetic field B$$_z$$; in this case it begins as an ideal-MHD instability followed by the generation of bursty bulk flows and dipolarization fronts. Indeed, remote sensing and global MHD modeling show the formation of tail regions with increased B$$_z$$, prone to magnetic reconnection, ballooning/interchange and flapping instabilities. While interchange instability may also develop in such thicker sheets, it may grow more slowly compared to tearing and cause secondary reconnection locally in the dawn-dusk direction. Post-onset transients include bursty flows and dipolarization fronts, micro-instabilities of lower-hybrid-drift and whistler waves, as well as damped global flux tube oscillations in the near-Earth region. They convert the stretched tail magnetic field energy into bulk plasma acceleration and collisionless heating, excitation of a broad spectrum of plasma waves, and collisional dissipation in the ionosphere. Collisionless heating involves ion reflection from fronts, Fermi, betatron as well as other, non-adiabatic, mechanisms. Ionospheric manifestations of some of these magnetotail phenomena are discussed. Explosive plasma phenomena observed in the laboratory, the solar corona and solar wind are also discussed.

Authors:
 [1];  [2];  [3];  [4];  [5];  [1];  [1];  [6];  [7];  [8];  [9];  [10];  [11];  [4];  [3];  [12]
  1. Johns Hopkins Univ., Baltimore, MD (United States). University Applied Physics Lab.
  2. Space Science Inst., Boulder, CO (United States)
  3. Univ. of California, Los Angeles, CA (United States)
  4. Saint Petersburg State Univ., St. Petersburg (Russia). Earth’s Physics Dept.
  5. Swedish Inst. of Space Physics, Uppsala (Sweden)
  6. Univ. of Alaska Fairbanks, Fairbanks, AK (United States)
  7. Space Research Inst., Austrian Academy of Sciences, Graz (Austria)
  8. Univ. of California, Los Angeles, CA (United States). Dept. of Physics and Astronomy
  9. National Inst. for Fusion Science, National Inst. of Natural Sciences, Toki (Japan); Princeton Univ., NJ (United States). Princeton Plasma Physics Lab.
  10. Univ. of New Hampshire, Durham, NH (United States). Inst. for the Study of Earth, Oceans and Space
  11. Univ. of California, Los Angeles, CA (United States). Inst. of Geophysics and Planetary Physics
  12. Peking Univ., Beijing (China). School of Earth and Space Sciences
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Princeton Plasma Physics Lab. (PPPL), Princeton, NJ (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE
OSTI Identifier:
1567274
Grant/Contract Number:  
AGS 1744269; NNX15AN73G; 80NSSC18K0834; 80NSSC18K1452
Resource Type:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Space Science Reviews
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 215; Journal Issue: 4; Journal ID: ISSN 0038-6308
Publisher:
Springer
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
79 ASTRONOMY AND ASTROPHYSICS; Magnetotail; Magnetic reconnection; Current sheet thinning; Bz hump; Tearing instability; Ballooning/interchange instability; Flapping motions; Auroral beads/rays; Bursty bulk flows; Dipolarization fronts; Flux tube oscillations; Plasma micro-instabilities; Particle acceleration; Supra-arcade downflows; Laboratory reconnection experiments

Citation Formats

Sitnov, Mikhail, Birn, Joachim, Ferdousi, Banafsheh, Gordeev, Evgeny, Khotyaintsev, Yuri, Merkin, Viacheslav, Motoba, Tetsuo, Otto, Antonius, Panov, Evgeny, Pritchett, Philip, Pucci, Fulvia, Raeder, Joachim, Runov, Andrei, Sergeev, Victor, Velli, Marco, and Zhou, Xuzhi. Explosive Magnetotail Activity. United States: N. p., 2019. Web. doi:10.1007/s11214-019-0599-5.
Sitnov, Mikhail, Birn, Joachim, Ferdousi, Banafsheh, Gordeev, Evgeny, Khotyaintsev, Yuri, Merkin, Viacheslav, Motoba, Tetsuo, Otto, Antonius, Panov, Evgeny, Pritchett, Philip, Pucci, Fulvia, Raeder, Joachim, Runov, Andrei, Sergeev, Victor, Velli, Marco, & Zhou, Xuzhi. Explosive Magnetotail Activity. United States. doi:10.1007/s11214-019-0599-5.
Sitnov, Mikhail, Birn, Joachim, Ferdousi, Banafsheh, Gordeev, Evgeny, Khotyaintsev, Yuri, Merkin, Viacheslav, Motoba, Tetsuo, Otto, Antonius, Panov, Evgeny, Pritchett, Philip, Pucci, Fulvia, Raeder, Joachim, Runov, Andrei, Sergeev, Victor, Velli, Marco, and Zhou, Xuzhi. Thu . "Explosive Magnetotail Activity". United States. doi:10.1007/s11214-019-0599-5. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1567274.
@article{osti_1567274,
title = {Explosive Magnetotail Activity},
author = {Sitnov, Mikhail and Birn, Joachim and Ferdousi, Banafsheh and Gordeev, Evgeny and Khotyaintsev, Yuri and Merkin, Viacheslav and Motoba, Tetsuo and Otto, Antonius and Panov, Evgeny and Pritchett, Philip and Pucci, Fulvia and Raeder, Joachim and Runov, Andrei and Sergeev, Victor and Velli, Marco and Zhou, Xuzhi},
abstractNote = {Modes and manifestations of the explosive activity in the Earth’s magnetotail, as well as its onset mechanisms and key pre-onset conditions are reviewed. Two mechanisms for the generation of the pre-onset current sheet are discussed, namely magnetic flux addition to the tail lobes, or other high-latitude perturbations, and magnetic flux evacuation from the near-Earth tail associated with dayside reconnection. Reconnection onset may require stretching and thinning of the sheet down to electron scales. It may also start in thicker sheets in regions with a tailward gradient of the equatorial magnetic field B$_z$; in this case it begins as an ideal-MHD instability followed by the generation of bursty bulk flows and dipolarization fronts. Indeed, remote sensing and global MHD modeling show the formation of tail regions with increased B$_z$, prone to magnetic reconnection, ballooning/interchange and flapping instabilities. While interchange instability may also develop in such thicker sheets, it may grow more slowly compared to tearing and cause secondary reconnection locally in the dawn-dusk direction. Post-onset transients include bursty flows and dipolarization fronts, micro-instabilities of lower-hybrid-drift and whistler waves, as well as damped global flux tube oscillations in the near-Earth region. They convert the stretched tail magnetic field energy into bulk plasma acceleration and collisionless heating, excitation of a broad spectrum of plasma waves, and collisional dissipation in the ionosphere. Collisionless heating involves ion reflection from fronts, Fermi, betatron as well as other, non-adiabatic, mechanisms. Ionospheric manifestations of some of these magnetotail phenomena are discussed. Explosive plasma phenomena observed in the laboratory, the solar corona and solar wind are also discussed.},
doi = {10.1007/s11214-019-0599-5},
journal = {Space Science Reviews},
number = 4,
volume = 215,
place = {United States},
year = {2019},
month = {5}
}

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Figures / Tables:

Fig. 1 Fig. 1: Formation of the embedded TCS in the late growth phase of the March 29, 2009 substorm. Top panels show GSM coordinates of spacecraft and bottom panels show THEMIS P2–P5 observations, including (from bottom to top) $B$$z$ and $B$$x$ GSM magnetic field components, estimates of cross-tail current jy usingmore » differences of $B$$x$ components at pairs P3–P4 and P4–P5, and estimates of Harris current sheet thickness $L$$z$ = $L$$H$ for the same pairs of spacecraft. Adapted from Sergeev et al. (2011)« less

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