Spatial dependence of electromagnetic ion cyclotron waves triggered by solar wind dynamic pressure enhancements

J. H. Cho, D. Y. Lee, S. J. Noh, Hyomin Kim, C. R. Choi, J. Lee, J. Hwang

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15 Scopus citations


In this paper, using the multisatellite (the Van Allen Probes and two GOES satellites) observations in the inner magnetosphere, we examine two electromagnetic ion cyclotron (EMIC) wave events that are triggered by Pdyn enhancements under prolonged northward interplanetary magnetic field quiet time preconditions. For both events, the impact of enhanced Pdyn causes EMIC waves at multiple points. However, we find a strong spatial dependence that EMIC waves due to enhanced Pdyn impact can occur at multiple points (likely globally but not necessarily everywhere) but with different wave properties. For Event 1, three satellites situated at a nearly same dawnside zone but at slightly different L shells see occurrence of EMIC waves but in different frequencies relative to local ion gyrofrequencies and with different polarizations. These waves are found inside or at the outer edge of the plasmasphere. Another satellite near noon observes no dramatic EMIC wave despite the strongest magnetic compression there. For Event 2, the four satellites are situated at widely separated magnetic local time zones when they see occurrence of EMIC waves. They are again found at different frequencies relative to local ion gyrofrequencies with different polarizations and all outside the plasmasphere. We propose two possible explanations that (i) if triggered by enhanced Pdyn impact, details of ion cyclotron instability growth can be sensitive to local plasma conditions related to background proton distributions, and (ii) there can be preexisting waves with a specific spatial distribution, which determines occurrence and specific properties of EMIC waves depending on satellite's relative position after an enhanced Pdyn arrives.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)5502-5518
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 1 2017

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Geophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


  • EMIC waves
  • dynamic pressure


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