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Resonant diffusion of radiation belt electrons by whistler-mode chorus

Horne, R.B.; Glauert, S.A.; Thorne, R.M.. 2003 Resonant diffusion of radiation belt electrons by whistler-mode chorus. Geophysical Research Letters, 30 (9), 1493. 4. 10.1029/2003GL016963

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Abstract/Summary

We present the first relativistic electron pitch-angle and momentum diffusion rates for scattering by whistler-mode waves in the low density regieme. Diffusion rates are strongly dependent on the ratio between the electron plasma and gyro-frequencies ωpe/Ωe. For conditions typical of storm times, diffusion rates at a few MeV increase by more than 3 orders of magnitude as ωpe/Ωe is reduced from 10 to 1.5. Diffusion rates are extremely sensitive to energy and become ineffective above 3 MeV. At energies below 100 keV pitch-angle diffusion approaches strong diffusion loss to the atmosphere, while loss at higher energies is much weaker. For storm-time whistler-mode chorus amplitudes near 100 pT, and ωpe/Ωe ≤ 2.5, acceleration timescales can be less than a day at 1 MeV. This indicates that chorus diffusion could provide an important mechanism for local acceleration during the recovery phase of storms outside the plasmapause.

Item Type: Publication - Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI): 10.1029/2003GL016963
Programmes: BAS Programmes > Antarctic Science in the Global Context (2000-2005) > Magnetic Reconnection, Substorms and their Consequences
ISSN: 0094-8276
Date made live: 11 Apr 2012 14:03
URI: http://nora.nerc.ac.uk/id/eprint/17656

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