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Multi-point observations of the inner boundary of the plasma sheet during geomagnetic disturbances

Multi-point observations of the inner boundary of the plasma sheet during geomagnetic disturbances

Publication date: 10 July 2008

Authors: Runov, A. et al.

Journal: Geophys. Res. Lett.
Volume: 35
Page: L17S23
Year: 2008

Copyright: American Geophysical Union

We report on the THEMIS and Double Star TC-1 observations at the geocentric distances of 3 < R < 8 RE during substorms on March 23, 2007. THEMIS crossed the inner boundary of the equatorial dusk-side plasma in the string-of-pearls configuration, allowing the dynamics of particle populations to be traced within time ranges from hours to 10 minutes. Observations show co-existence of the plasma sheet ion population (5 - 30 keV) with the ring current ion population (100 - 1000 keV) at 4 < R < 6 RE . The plasma sheet population was characterized by pronounced "nose"-like dispersion with the spectral density maximum at ~10 keV. The plasma sheet boundary, defined by a sharp decrease of the ~1 keV electron flux, moved inward to R = 4 and outward back to ~8 RE within about 1 hour. Local enhancements of the plasma sheet (1 - 5 keV) electron flux with the characteristic time scale of 2 - 10 min were detected at 5 < R < 6 RE during the substorm.

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