Relativistic electron scattering by magnetosonic waves: Effects of discrete wave emission and high wave amplitudes

Abstract : In this paper, we study relativistic electron scattering by fast magnetosonic waves. We compare results of test particle simulations and the quasi-linear theory for different spectra of waves to investigate how a fine structure of the wave emission can influence electron resonant scattering. We show that for a realistically wide distribution of wave normal angles h (i.e., when the dispersion dh 0:5), relativistic electron scattering is similar for a wide wave spectrum and for a spectrum consisting in well-separated ion cyclotron harmonics. Comparisons of test particle simulations with quasi-linear theory show that for dh > 0:5, the quasi-linear approximation describes resonant scattering correctly for a large enough plasma frequency. For a very narrow h distribution (when dh 0:05), however, the effect of a fine structure in the wave spectrum becomes important. In this case, quasi-linear theory clearly fails in describing accurately electron scattering by fast magnetosonic waves. We also study the effect of high wave amplitudes on relativistic electron scattering. For typical conditions in the earth’s radiation belts, the quasi-linear approximation cannot accurately describe electron scattering for waves with averaged amplitudes >300 pT. We discuss various applications of the obtained results for modeling electron dynamics in the radiation belts and in the Earth’s magnetotail
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A. V. Artemyev, Didier Mourenas, O. V. Agapitov, V. V. Krasnoselskikh. Relativistic electron scattering by magnetosonic waves: Effects of discrete wave emission and high wave amplitudes. Physics of Plasmas, American Institute of Physics, 2015, 22, pp.062901. ⟨10.1063/1.4922061⟩. ⟨insu-01255790⟩

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