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Annales Geophysicae An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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Volume 14, issue 10
Ann. Geophys., 14, 1025–1031, 1996
https://doi.org/10.1007/s00585-996-1025-3
© European Geosciences Union 1996
Ann. Geophys., 14, 1025–1031, 1996
https://doi.org/10.1007/s00585-996-1025-3
© European Geosciences Union 1996

  31 Oct 1996

31 Oct 1996

Travelling convection vortices in the ionosphere map to the central plasma sheet

A. Yahnin* and T. Moretto A. Yahnin and T. Moretto
  • Danish Meteorological Institute, Solar-Terrestrial Physics Division, Copenhagen, Denmark
  • *Permanent address: Polar Geophysical Institute, Apatity, Murmansk region, 184200, Russia (E-mail: yahnin@pgi-ksc.murmansk.su)
  • Correspondence to: A. Yahnin

Abstract. We investigate the magnetospheric domain responsible for the generation of ionospheric travelling convection vortices (TCV) by comparing the location of the TCV to the locations of the low-altitude particle-precipitation boundaries deduced from the DMSP satellite measurements. For three very well documented TCV events we are able to identify suitable satellite passes, in the sense that for each event we can identify two to three passes occurring close to the TCV observation in both time and space. In all three cases the comparisons place the TCV centres at or equatorward of the central plasma sheet/boundary plasma sheet precipitation boundary. Thus our results indicate that the field-aligned currents related to the TCV originate in the plasma sheet rather than at the magnetopause or in the low-latitude boundary layer, as previous studies suggest.

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