Volume 100, Number 6, December 2012
|Number of page(s)||6|
|Section||Geophysics, Astronomy and Astrophysics|
|Published online||19 December 2012|
Double mid-latitude dynamical reconnection at the magnetopause: An efficient mechanism allowing solar wind to enter the Earth's magnetosphere
1 IIFS/PIIM, UMR 7345, CNRS Aix-Marseille University - Marseille, France, EU
2 Physics Department, University of Pisa - Pisa, Italy, EU
3 Alta SpA - Pisa, Italy, EU
Received: 4 December 2012
Accepted: 5 December 2012
Three-dimensional simulations of the Kelvin-Helmholtz (KH) instability in a magnetic configuration reproducing typical conditions at the flank Earth's magnetosphere during northward periods show the system's ability to generate favorable conditions for magnetic reconnection to occur at mid-latitude. Once these conditions are established, magnetic reconnection proceeds spontaneously in both hemispheres generating field lines that close on Earth but are connected to the solar wind at low latitude, allowing direct entrance of solar wind plasma into the magnetosphere. These results are consistent with recent observations of KH vortices showing the signature of reconnection events occurring well outside the equatorial plane (Bavassano M. B. et al., Ann. Geophys., 28 (2010) 893).
PACS: 94.30.cp – Magnetic reconnection / 52.35.Mw – Nonlinear phenomena: waves, wave propagation, and other interactions (including parametric effects, mode coupling, ponderomotive effects, etc.) / 94.30.−d –
© EPLA, 2012
Current usage metrics show cumulative count of Article Views (full-text article views including HTML views, PDF and ePub downloads, according to the available data) and Abstracts Views on Vision4Press platform.
Data correspond to usage on the plateform after 2015. The current usage metrics is available 48-96 hours after online publication and is updated daily on week days.
Initial download of the metrics may take a while.