The Shape of Strongly Disturbed Dayside Magnetopause

  • Author(s): Alexei V. Dmitriev and Alla V. Suvorova
  • DOI: 10.3319/TAO.2012.09.26.02(SEC)
  • Keywords: Magnetopause, Magnetospheric currents, Geomagnetic storm



During strong geomagnetic disturbances, the Earth¡¦s magnetosphere exhibits unusual and nonlinear interaction with the incident flow of magnetized solar wind plasma. Global Magneto-hydro-dynamic (MHD) modeling of the magnetosphere predicts that the storm-time effects at the magnetopause result from the abnormal plasma transport and/or extremely strong field aligned currents. In-situ observations of the magnetospheric boundary, magnetopause, by Geosynchronous Operational Environmental Satellite (GOES) allowed us to find experimentally such effects as a saturation of the dayside reconnection, unusual bluntness and prominent duskward skewing of the nose magnetopause. The saturation and duskward skewing were attributed to the storm-time magnetopause formation under strong southward interplanetary magnetic field (IMF). The unusual bluntness was observed during both high solar wind pressure and strong southward IMF. We suggest that these phenomena are caused by a substantial contribution of the cross-tail current magnetic field and the hot magnetospheric plasma from the asymmetrical ring current into the pressure balance at the dayside magnetopause.

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