Van Allen Probes observations of structured whistler mode activity and coincident electron Landau acceleration inside a remnant plasmaspheric plume

J. R. Woodroffe, V. K. Jordanova, H. O. Funsten, A. V. Streltsov, M. T. Bengtson, C. A. Kletzing, J. R. Wygant, S. A. Thaller, A. W. Breneman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

6 Scopus citations

Abstract

We present observations from the Van Allen Probes spacecraft that identify a region of intense whistler mode activity within a large density enhancement outside of the plasmasphere. We speculate that this density enhancement is part of a remnant plasmaspheric plume, with the observed wave being driven by a weakly anisotropic electron injection that drifted into the plume and became nonlinearly unstable to whistler emission. Particle measurements indicate that a significant fraction of thermal (<100 eV) electrons within the plume were subject to Landau acceleration by these waves, an effect that is naturally explained by whistler emission within a gradient and high-density ducting inside a density enhancement.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3073-3086
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics
Volume122
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 1 2017

Keywords

  • ducting
  • wave-particle interactions
  • whistlers

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