Extended Magnetic Reconnection Across the Dayside Magnetopause

Dunlop, M. W. and Zhang, Q.-H. and Bogdanova, Y. V. and Lockwood, M. and Hasegawa, H. and Wang, J. and Taylor, M. G. G. T. and Berchem, J. and Lavraud, B. and Eastwood, J.P. and Volwerk, M. and Shen, C. and Shi, J.-K. and Constantinescu, D. and Frey, H. and Fazakerley, A. N. and Sibeck, D.G. and Escoubet, P. and Wild, James and Liu, Z.-X. (2011) Extended Magnetic Reconnection Across the Dayside Magnetopause. Physical review letters, 107 (2). ISSN 1079-7114

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The extent of where magnetic reconnection (MR), the dominant process responsible for energy and plasma transport into the magnetosphere, operates across Earth’s dayside magnetopause has previously been only indirectly shown by observations. We report the first direct evidence of X-line structure resulting from the operation of MR at each of two widely separated locations along the tilted, subsolar line of maximum current on Earth’s magnetopause, confirming the operation of MR at two or more sites across the extended region where MR is expected to occur. The evidence results from in-situ observations of the associated ion and electron plasma distributions, present within each magnetic X-line structure, taken by two spacecraft passing through the active MR regions simultaneously.

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Journal Article
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Physical review letters
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© 2011 American Physical Society
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Deposited On:
23 Sep 2011 14:38
Last Modified:
16 Sep 2023 00:37