Waves in interplanetary shocks: A wind/WAVES study

L. B. Wilson, C. Cattell, P. J. Kellogg, K. Goetz, K. Kersten, L. Hanson, R. MacGregor, J. C. Kasper

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We describe results from the first statistical study of waveform capture data during 67 interplanetary (IP) shocks with Mach numbers ranging from ∼1-6. Most of the waveform captures and nearly 100% of the large amplitude waves were in the ramp region. Although solitary waves, Langmuir waves, and ion acoustic waves (IAWs) are all observed in the ramp region of the IP shocks, large amplitude IAWs dominate. The wave amplitude is correlated with the fast mode Mach number and with the shock strength. The observed waves produced anomalous resistivities from ∼1-856Ω•m (∼107 times greater than classical estimates.) The results are consistent with theory suggesting IAWs provide the primary dissipation for low Mach number shocks.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number041101
JournalPhysical review letters
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jul 26 2007


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