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Annales Geophysicae An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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Volume 27, issue 3
Ann. Geophys., 27, 1113-1118, 2009
https://doi.org/10.5194/angeo-27-1113-2009
© Author(s) 2009. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.

Special issue: Ninth International Conference on Substorms (ICS9)

Ann. Geophys., 27, 1113-1118, 2009
https://doi.org/10.5194/angeo-27-1113-2009
© Author(s) 2009. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.

  05 Mar 2009

05 Mar 2009


Azimuthal expansion of the dipolarization at geosynchronous orbits associated with substorms

C. J. Watson and P. T. Jayachandran C. J. Watson and P. T. Jayachandran
  • Physics Dept., University of New Brunswick, P.O. Box 4400, 8 Bailey Drive, Fredericton, New Brunswick, E3B 5A3, Canada

Abstract. Dipolarization, one of the main indicators of substorm expansion onset, represents topological changes in the magnetotail. It is believed that dipolarization is initiated at a longitudinally confined region in the tail, followed by the azimuthal expansion. There are very limited studies in the literature regarding the azimuthal propagation of the dipolarization front in the magnetotail. In this study we have used ten years of GOES data and POLAR and IMAGE data to study the characteristics of the propagation of the dipolarization fronts at the geosynchronous orbit. We have identified a number of dipolarization events in the GOES magnetic field data and substorm onsets from POLAR UVI and IMAGE-FUV measurements. Using the delay of dipolarization signatures at the two GOES satellites and onset times from POLAR and IMAGE measurements we have estimated the propagation speed of the dipolarization fronts. The calculated speeds vary between 10 km/s and 420 km/s and show a power law distribution.

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