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Evolution of the plasmoid‐lobe interaction with downtail distance

Slavin, JA; Owen, CJ; Hesse, M; (1994) Evolution of the plasmoid‐lobe interaction with downtail distance. Geophysical Research Letters , 21 (24) 2765 - 2768. 10.1029/94GL02442. Green open access

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Abstract

This study examines the interaction between plasmoids moving anti‐sunward at high speeds and the tail lobes which bound them to the north and south. Attention is focused on the influence of changing lobe conditions with downtail distance. It is shown using ISEE 3 measurements that the gradual filling of the lobes with mantle plasma and the decrease in magnetic field intensity reduces the average lobe MHD fast mode speed from 1200 km s^{-1} at X = −80 R_{E} to 400 km s^{-1} at X = −220 R_{E}. This results in the ratio of the plasmoid speed to the fast mode speed increasing with downtail distance, from 0.3 at X = −80 R_{E} to ∼1 at X = −220 R_{E}. It is argued that the “standard” traveling compression region (TCR) signature observed closer to the Earth will be distorted at large distances, where the fast mode transit time between the plasmoid and magnetopause becomes long compared to the time for the plasmoid to move past a given point in the tail. This change in the nature of the plasmoid‐lobe interaction with downtail distance is offered as an explanation for why the reported rate of TCR occurrence peaks at X = −60 to −130 R_{E} and decreases in the more distant tail.

Type: Article
Title: Evolution of the plasmoid‐lobe interaction with downtail distance
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1029/94GL02442
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1029/94GL02442
Language: English
Additional information: Copyright 1994 by the American Geophysical Union
Keywords: Traveling compression regions, Geomagnetic tail, Isee-3, Magnetotail, Sheet
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Maths and Physical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Maths and Physical Sciences > Dept of Space and Climate Physics
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/153201
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