Magnetotail structures in a laboratory magnetosphere

G. Yur, T. F. Chang, H. U. Rahman, J. Birn, C. K. Chao

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The structure of the magnetotail is investigated in a laboratory simulated magnetosphere. This study builds upon our previous investigation of the magnetotail [Birn et al., 1992], which was explored magnetotail through models and magnetic field measurements in the simulated magnetosphere. In this paper the magnetic field measurements are complemented by measurements of ion and electron fluxes, plasma temperature and high-resolution optical images. Plasma fluxes are measured with a double-sided Faraday cup that measures the ion and electron fluxes of counterstreaming plasma simultaneously in both directions. The overall magnetotail structure is examined with high-resolution imaging using a gated optical imager and applying digital enhancement to the magnetotail region. These images confirm the structures inferred earlier from the magnetic field measurements, a Y-type magnetic neutral line for northward interplanetary magnetic field, and the expected X-type structure for southward IMF.

Original languageEnglish
Article number98JA02193
Pages (from-to)14517-14528
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics
Issue numberA7
StatePublished - 1999


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