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Annales Geophysicae An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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Volume 27, issue 5 | Copyright

Special issue: Ninth International Conference on Substorms (ICS9)

Ann. Geophys., 27, 1969-1978, 2009
https://doi.org/10.5194/angeo-27-1969-2009
© Author(s) 2009. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.

  04 May 2009

04 May 2009


Estimating the magnetic energy inside traveling compression regions

S. A. Kiehas1, V. S. Semenov2, H. K. Biernat1,3, V. V. Ivanova1, R. Nakamura1, and W. Baumjohann1 S. A. Kiehas et al.
  • 1Space Research Institute, Austrian Academy of Sciences, Schmiedlstr. 6, 8042 Graz, Austria
  • 2Institute of Physics, State University St. Petersburg, 198504 Russia
  • 3Institute of Physics, University Graz, Universitätsplatz 5, 8010 Graz, Austria

Abstract. We investigate a series of six TCRs (traveling compression regions), appearing in the course of a small substorm on 19 September 2001. Except for two of these TCRs, all Cluster spacecraft were located in the lobe and detected the typical signatures of TCRs, i.e., compressions in |B| and bipolar Bz variations. We use these perturbations in Bz for calculations on the magnetic energy inside the TCR and compare the amount of magnetic field energy with the kinetic energy inside the underlying plasma bulge. According to results obtained from theory, the amount of magnetic energy inside TCRs is about two times higher than the kinetic plasma energy inside the accompanied plasma bulge. We verify this theoretical result by first investigations of the magnetic field energy inside TCRs. The calculations lead to a magnetic energy in the order of 1010 Joule per RE for each of the TCRs.

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