Articles | Volume 21, issue 6
Special issue:
30 Jun 2003
 | 30 Jun 2003

Latitudinal extent of large-scale structures in the solar wind

H. A. Elliott, D. J. McComas, and P. Riley

Abstract. Comparison of solar wind observations from the ACE spacecraft, in the ecliptic plane at ~ 1 AU, and the Ulysses spacecraft as it orbits over the Sun’s poles, provides valuable information about the latitudinal extent and variation of solar wind structures in the heliosphere. While qualitative comparisons can be made using average properties observed at these two locations, the comparison of specific, individual structures requires a procedure to determine if a given structure has been observed by both spacecraft. We use a 1-D hydrodynamic code to propagate ACE plasma measurements out to the distance of Ulysses and adjust for the differing longitudes of the ACE and Ulysses spacecraft. In addition to comparing the plasma parameters and their characteristic profiles, we examine suprathermal electron measurements and magnetic field polarity to help determine if the same features are encountered at both ACE and Ulysses. The He I l 1083 nm coronal hole maps are examined to understand the global structure of the Sun during the time of our heliospheric measurements. We find that the same features are frequently observed when both spacecraft are near the ecliptic plane. Stream structures derived from smaller coronal holes during the rising phase of solar cycle 23 persists over 20°–30° in heliolatitude, consistent with their spatial scales back at the Sun.

Key words. Interplanetary physics (solar wind plasma)

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