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Lee S.H.,University of Alaska Fairbanks | Zhang H.,University of Alaska Fairbanks | Zong Q.-G.,Beijing University of Technology | Wang Y.,Beijing University of Technology | And 3 more authors.
Journal of Geophysical Research A: Space Physics | Year: 2015

An important source of the terrestrial magnetospheric plasma is the Earth's ionospheric outflows from the high-latitude regions of both hemispheres. The ionospheric ion outflows have rarely been observed at the dayside magnetopause. We report Cluster observations of the ionospheric ion outflows observed at the dayside magnetopause. The low-energy (up to 1.5 keV) electrons are detected with bidirectional pitch angle distributions indicating that the magnetic field lines are closed. The unidirectional cold ions (< 200 eV) are observed in the magnetosphere by both C1 and C3. The pitch angle distributions (0{ring operator}-75{ring operator}) of the cold ions (< 1 keV) at the dayside magnetopause indicate that these cold ions are the ionospheric outflows coming only from the Southern Hemisphere. The cold ions (< 200 eV) fluxes are modulated by the ULF wave electric field. Two different species (possibly H+ and He+) are observed in the magnetosphere. Our results suggest that the ionospheric outflows can directly reach the dayside magnetopause region and may participate in the reconnection process. ©2015. American Geophysical Union. Source


Lee S.H.,University of Alaska Fairbanks | Zhang H.,University of Alaska Fairbanks | Zong Q.-G.,Beijing University of Technology | Otto A.,University of Alaska Fairbanks | And 2 more authors.
Journal of Geophysical Research A: Space Physics | Year: 2016

We present a statistical study of plasmaspheric plumes and ionospheric outflows observed by the Cluster spacecraft near the dayside magnetopause. Plasmaspheric plumes are identified when the low-energy ions (<1 keV) with ∼90° pitch angle distributions are observed by the Cluster Ion Spectrometer/Hot Ion Analyzer instrument. The ionospheric outflows are characterized by unidirectional or bidirectional field-aligned pitch angle distributions of low-energy ions observed in the dayside magnetosphere. Forty-three (10%) plasmaspheric plume events and 32 (7%) ionospheric outflow events were detected out of the 442 times that C3 crossed the dayside magnetopause between 2007 and 2009. The occurrence rate of plumes at duskside is significantly higher than that at dawnside. The occurrence rate of outflows shows a weak dawn-dusk asymmetry. We investigate the dependence of the occurrence rates of plumes and ionospheric outflows on geomagnetic activity and on solar wind/interplanetary magnetic field (IMF) conditions. The plume events tend to occur during southward IMF (duskward solar wind electric field) and moderate geomagnetic activity (Kp = 3,-30≤Dst <- 10 nT). However, the ionospheric outflow events tend to occur during northward IMF (dawnward solar wind electric field). The ionospheric outflows do not occur when Kp = 0, and the occurrence rate of the ionospheric outflows does not have a clear Dst dependence. Seventy-five percent (46%) of the outflows are observed in the duskside for negative (positive) IMF By. Conversely, 54% (25%) of the outflows are observed in the dawnside for positive (negative) IMF By. Finally, the occurrence rates of both plumes and outflows increase with solar wind dynamic pressure. ©2016. American Geophysical Union. Source

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