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Plasmaspheric Density Structures and Dynamics: Properties Observed by the CLUSTER and IMAGE Missions

Abstract : Plasmaspheric density structures have been studied since the discovery of the plasmasphere in the late 1950s. But the advent of the Cluster and Image missions in 2000 has added substantially to our knowledge of density structures, thanks to the new capabilities of those missions: global imaging with Image and four-point in situ measurements with Cluster. The study of plasma sources and losses has given new results on refilling rates and erosion processes. Two-dimensional density images of the plasmasphere have been obtained. The spatial gradient of plasmaspheric density has been computed. The ratios between H+, He+ and O+ have been deduced from different ion measurements. Plasmaspheric plumes have been studied in detail with new tools, which provide information on their morphology, dynamics and occurrence. Density structures at smaller scales have been revealed with those missions, structures that could not be clearly distinguished before the global images from Image and the four-point measurements by Cluster became available. New terms have been given to these structures, like "shoulders", "channels", "fingers" and "crenulations". This paper reviews the most relevant new results about the plasmaspheric plasma obtained since the start of the Cluster and Image missions.
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Submitted on : Tuesday, March 17, 2020 - 4:34:08 PM
Last modification on : Tuesday, July 7, 2020 - 3:30:03 PM

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Fabien Darrouzet, Dennis Gallagher, Nicolas André, Carpenter Donald, Iannis Dandouras, et al.. Plasmaspheric Density Structures and Dynamics: Properties Observed by the CLUSTER and IMAGE Missions. Space Science Reviews, Springer Verlag, 2009, 145 (1-2), pp.55-106. ⟨10.1007/s11214-008-9438-9⟩. ⟨insu-02510322⟩

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