Articles | Volume 21, issue 4
Ann. Geophys., 21, 923–932, 2003
Ann. Geophys., 21, 923–932, 2003

  30 Apr 2003

30 Apr 2003

Low frequency geomagnetic field variations at Dome C (Antarctica)

S. Lepidi1, L. Cafarella2, P. Francia3, A. Meloni2, P. Palangio1, and J. J. Schott4 S. Lepidi et al.
  • 1Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia, L’Aquila, Italy
  • 2Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia, Roma, Italy
  • 3Dipartimento di Fisica, Università dell’Aquila, L’Aquila, Italy
  • 4EOST, IPG, Strasbourg, France

Abstract. We conduct an analysis of the geomagnetic field variations recorded at the new Antarctic station Dome C, located very close to the geomagnetic pole, which has been operating for approximately one month during the 1999–2000 campaign. We also perform a comparison with simultaneous measurements at the Italian Antarctic station Terra Nova Bay, in order to investigate the spatial extension of the phenomena observed at very high latitude. Our results show that between the two stations the daily variation is similar and the fluctuations with f ~ 1 mHz are coherent, provided that in both cases the comparison is made between geographically oriented components, suggesting that ionospheric currents related to the geographic position, more than field-aligned currents, are responsible for the lowest frequency variations; conversely, higher frequency (Pc5) fluctuations are substantially decoupled between the two stations. We also found that at Dome C the fluctuation power in the 0.55–6.7 mHz frequency band is well related with the solar wind speed during the whole day and that at Terra Nova Bay the correlation is also high, except around local geomagnetic noon, when the station approaches the polar cusp. These results indicate that the solar wind speed control of the geomagnetic field fluctuation power is very strict in the polar cap and less important close to the polar cusp.

Key words. Magnetospheric physics (MHD waves and instabilities; Polar cap phenomena; Solar wind-magnetosphere interactions)