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The relationship between j x B and del center dot P-e in the magnetotail plasma sheet: Cluster observations

Henderson, PD; Owen, CJ; Lahiff, AD; Alexeev, IV; Fazakerley, AN; Yin, L; ... Reme, H; + view all (2008) The relationship between j x B and del center dot P-e in the magnetotail plasma sheet: Cluster observations. J GEOPHYS RES-SPACE , 113 (A7) , Article A07S31. 10.1029/2007JA012697.

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Abstract

In this paper we report an extension to Henderson et al.'s (2006) case study, in which we investigate the generality of the anticorrelation between the del.P-e and j x B terms in Ohm's law observed in the plasma sheet. Further current sheet crossings are investigated which occurred on 17 August 2003 and 24 September 2003. Data from this period are particularly relevant as the interspacecraft separations are at their smallest for the Cluster mission. We confirm the generality of the observed anticorrelation and observe that the contributions to the electric field were mainly in the direction normal to the neutral sheet. A simple magnetohydrostatic treatment is used to explain the correlation and directional organization. The treatment is able to explain the anticorrelation and how the relative contributions to the electric field from the del.P-e and j x B terms in Ohm's law may be linked to the temperature ratio of the different plasma constituents as well as their spatial scales. In the examples reported here, the scale length over which the electron pressure changed le was smaller than the scale over which the ion pressure changed l(i), with l(e)/l(i) being between similar to 0.1 and similar to 0.4.

Type:Article
Title:The relationship between j x B and del center dot P-e in the magnetotail plasma sheet: Cluster observations
DOI:10.1029/2007JA012697
Keywords:COLLISIONLESS RECONNECTION, DISTANT MAGNETOTAIL, SUBSTORM, ELECTRON, MAGNETOPAUSE, SIMULATIONS, BALANCE, GEOTAIL, AVERAGE, HYBRID
UCL classification:UCL > School of BEAMS > Faculty of Maths and Physical Sciences > Space and Climate Physics

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