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Observations of nightside magnetic reconnection during substorm growth and expansion phases

Lam, M.M.; Pinnock, M.; Donovan, E.F.. 2006 Observations of nightside magnetic reconnection during substorm growth and expansion phases. Journal of Geophysical Research, 111 (A5), A05209. 11, pp. 10.1029/2005JA011356

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Abstract/Summary

The temporal and spatial variability of nightside magnetic reconnection is described using two-dimensional ionospheric measurements during the growth phase and early expansion phase of a single substorm. Two techniques (A and B) are used to address both the localized (across ∼15° longitude at ∼2300 magnetic local time (MLT)) and the large-scale reconnection rate, using ionospheric data that provides the component of the electric field tangential to the polar cap boundary (PCB) in the stationary boundary frame. Technique A uses localized high-resolution measurements derived from 630 nm all-sky imager data at Rankin Inlet and ionospheric convection vectors obtained from line-of-sight velocity data from the Kapuskasing and Saskatoon Super Dual Auroral Radar Network (SuperDARN) HF radars. Technique B uses lower resolution global measurements, obtained by combining Polar VIS imager data and a velocity field derived using SuperDARN global convection mapping. A third technique (C) estimates the nightside reconnection potential from the dayside reconnection potential and the variation in the polar cap area. Technique A reveals standing wave-like variation of period ∼16 min in the reconnection rate in the late growth phase (spatial noncontinuity in the x-line). The localized measurements of the reconnection rate vary between 0 and 50 mV/m during both the growth and expansion phases. Technique B shows the expansion of the x-line toward the duskside during the first 15 min of the expansion phase, from a width of ∼4 hours of MLT to ∼7 hours MLT.

Item Type: Publication - Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI): 10.1029/2005JA011356
Programmes: BAS Programmes > Antarctic Science in the Global Context (2000-2005) > Magnetic Reconnection, Substorms and their Consequences
ISSN: 0148-0227
Additional Information. Not used in RCUK Gateway to Research.: Full text not available from this server
Additional Keywords: Magnetosphere
NORA Subject Terms: Space Sciences
Date made live: 31 Aug 2007 11:02
URI: http://nora.nerc.ac.uk/id/eprint/72

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