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NAM2012 - All Presentation Details

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Seasonal and clock angle control of the location of flux transfer events signatures at the magnetopa

Author: Robert Fear

University of Leicester

Co-Authors: M. Palmroth (Finnish Meteorological Institute); S. E. Milan (University of Leicester)

Session: MST1: Magnetic Reconnection in Space and Astrophysical Plasmas

Presentation type: Talk      10:30  Thursday 29th 10:00-11:15 


Most models of flux transfer event (FTE) formation produce pairs of structures, which in general move away from the subsolar region and give rise to signatures which can be observed in both the northern and southern hemispheres. However, the multiple reconnection line (X-line) model and some 3D reconnection mechanisms are capable of producing a single flux rope, allowing a different number of FTE signatures to be observed in the northern and southern hemispheres. Raeder [2006] reported the results of an MHD simulation where he studied the effect of the Earth's dipole tilt on reconnection at the dayside magnetopause for a southward IMF orientation; in his simulations, flux ropes were formed by the sequential formation of X-lines, and flux ropes moved preferentially towards the winter hemisphere. However, subsequent simulations (including one invoking truly three dimensional reconnection [Dorelli & Bhattacharjee, 2009]) have found no dependence upon dipole tilt. In this presentation, we examine the seasonal distribution of flux transfer event signatures observed by Cluster. We find that there is a seasonal dependence in this data set; once the seasonal bias is taken into account, we find that the IMF clock angle controls the location of FTE signatures.

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