Vortex Generation and Auroral Response to a Solar Wind Dynamic Pressure Increase: Event Analyses

Zhao, Jinyan, Shi, Quanqi, Tian, Anmin, Shen, Xiao‐Chen, Weygand, James M, Wang, Huizi, Yao, Shutao, Ma, Xiao, Degeling, Alexander William, Rae, Jonathan, Zhang, Hui, Zhang, Xiao‐Jia, Bai, Shi‐Chen, Shang, Wensai and Park, Jong‐Sun (2021) Vortex Generation and Auroral Response to a Solar Wind Dynamic Pressure Increase: Event Analyses. Journal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics, 126 (3). e2020JA028753. ISSN 2169-9380

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Official URL: https://doi.org/10.1029/2020ja028753


In this study, we investigate ionospheric responses, including currents and aurorae, to solar wind dynamic pressure (SW Pdyn) sudden increases, which are critical for understanding solar wind‐magnetosphere‐ionosphere coupling. We focus on two similar SW Pdyn pulse events that occurred on 24 January 2012 and 12 November 2010. In both cases, equivalent ionospheric currents (EIC) vortices were generated within about ten minutes after the pressure pulse arrival, with a counter‐clockwise rotating vortex (viewed from above) observed on the dusk side in the former case, and a clockwise vortex observed on the dawn side in the latter. Simultaneous ground‐based All‐Sky Imager (ASI) observations in the vicinity of the observed EIC vortex in each case showed that aurorae intensified on the dusk side, and diminished on the dawn side. These observations provide direct evidence of the scenario proposed byShi et al. (2014) that magnetospheric flow vortices generated by a solar wind pressure pulse carry field‐aligned currents into the ionosphere and thereby modulate auroral activity. The dawn/dusk asymmetry in the auroral intensification is a direct result of the opposite sense of vortex rotation on the dawn and dusk sides, which generate oppositely directed field‐aligned currents into/out of the ionosphere.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: This work was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grants 41731068, 41774172, 41974189, 41941001, and 41961130382) and the Royal Society Newton Advanced Fellowship NAF\R1\191047, the Specialized Research Fund for State Key Laboratories, the young scholar plan of Shandong University at Weihai (2017WHWLJH08).
Subjects: F300 Physics
F500 Astronomy
Department: Faculties > Engineering and Environment > Mathematics, Physics and Electrical Engineering
Depositing User: John Coen
Date Deposited: 23 Feb 2021 14:09
Last Modified: 16 Sep 2021 03:30
URI: http://nrl.northumbria.ac.uk/id/eprint/45522

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