POES satellite observations of EMIC-wave driven relativistic electron precipitation during 1998-2010

first_img[1] Using six Polar Orbiting Environmental Satellites (POES) satellites that have carried the Space Environment Module-2 instrument package, a total of 436,422 individual half-orbits between 1998 and 2010 were inspected by an automatic detection algorithm searching for electromagnetic ion cyclotron (EMIC) driven relativistic electron precipitation (REP). The algorithm searched for one of the key characteristics of EMIC-driven REP, identified as the simultaneity between spikes in the P1 (52 keV differential proton flux channel) and P6 (>800 keV electron channel). In all, 2331 proton precipitation associated REP (PPAREP) events were identified. The majority of events were observed at L-values within the outer radiation belt (3 < L < 7) and were more common in the dusk and night sectors as determined by magnetic local time. The majority of events occurred outside the plasmasphere, at L-values ~1 Re greater than the plasmapause location determined from two different statistical models. The events make up a subset of EMIC-driven proton spikes investigated by Sandanger et al. (2009), and potentially reflect different overall characteristics compared with proton spikes, particularly when comparing their location to that of the plasmapause, i.e., EMIC-driven proton precipitation inside the plasmapause, and potentially EMIC-driven REP outside the plasmapause. There was no clear relationship between the location of plasmaspheric plumes and the locations of the PPAREP events detected. Analysis of the PPAREP event occurrence indicates that high solar wind speed and high geomagnetic activity levels increase the likelihood of an event being detected. The peak PPAREP event occurrence was during the declining phase of solar cycle 23, consistent with the 2003 maximum in the geomagnetic activity index, Ap.last_img read more

Read More →