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Title: SOLAR WIND PROTONS AT 1 AU: TRENDS AND BOUNDS, CONSTRAINTS AND CORRELATIONS

The proton temperature anisotropy in the solar wind exhibits apparent bounds which are compatible with the theoretical constraints imposed by temperature-anisotropy-driven kinetic instabilities. Recent statistical analyses based on conditional averaging indicate that near these theoretical constraints the solar wind protons typically have enhanced temperatures and a weaker collisionality. Here we carefully analyze the solar wind data and show that these results are a consequence of superposition of multiple correlations in the solar wind, namely, they mostly result from the correlation between the proton temperature and the solar wind velocity and from the superimposed anti-correlation between the proton temperature anisotropy and the proton parallel beta in the fast solar wind. Colder and more collisional data are distributed around temperature isotropy whereas hotter and less collisional data have a wider range of the temperature anisotropy anti-correlated with the proton parallel beta with signatures of constraints owing to the temperature-anisotropy-driven instabilities. However, most of the hot and weakly collisional data, including the hottest and least collisional ones, lies far from the marginal stability regions. Consequently, we conclude that there is no clear relation between the enhanced temperatures and instability constraints and that the conditional averaging used for these analyses must be used carefullymore » and need to be well tested.« less
Authors:
;  [1]
  1. Astronomical Institute, AS CR, Bocni II/1401,CZ-14100 Prague (Czech Republic)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22365957
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Astrophysical Journal Letters; Journal Volume: 784; Journal Issue: 1; Other Information: Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
79 ASTROPHYSICS, COSMOLOGY AND ASTRONOMY; ANISOTROPY; CORRELATIONS; ISOTROPY; LIMITING VALUES; PLASMA; PROTON TEMPERATURE; SOLAR PROTONS; SOLAR WIND; STABILITY; VELOCITY