Double Star TC-1 observation of the earthward flowing plasmoids in the near magnetotail
Publication date: 16 July 2007
Authors: Zhang, Y.C. et al.
Journal: Chinese Science Bulletin
We analyze Double Star TC-1 magnetic field data from July to September in 2004 and find that plasmoids exist in the very near-Earth magnetotail. It is the first time that TC-1 observes the plasmoids in the magnetotail at X > -13 RE. According to the difference of the magnetic field structure in plasmoids, we choose two typical cases for our study: the magnetic flux rope on August 6 with the open magnetic field and the magnetic loop on September 14 with the closed magnetic field. Both of the cases are associated with the high speed earthward flow and the magnetic loop is related to a strong substorm. The ions can escape from the magnetic flux rope along its open field line, but the case of the closed magnetic loop can trap the ions. The earthward flowing plasmoids observed by TC-1 indicate that the multiple X-line magnetic reconnection occurs beyond the distance of X=-10 RE from the Earth.Link to publication