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Annales Geophysicae An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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Volume 30, issue 6
Ann. Geophys., 30, 973-982, 2012
https://doi.org/10.5194/angeo-30-973-2012
© Author(s) 2012. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
Ann. Geophys., 30, 973-982, 2012
https://doi.org/10.5194/angeo-30-973-2012
© Author(s) 2012. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.

Regular paper 12 Jun 2012

Regular paper | 12 Jun 2012

Predictive model of magnetosheath plasma flow and its validation against Cluster and THEMIS data

J. Soucek1,2 and C. P. Escoubet1 J. Soucek and C. P. Escoubet
  • 1ESTEC, European Space Agency, Keplerlaan 1, 2201 AZ, Noordwijk, The Netherlands
  • 2Institute of Atmospheric Physics, Bocni II 1401, 141 31 Prague, Czech Republic

Abstract. An analytical model of magnetosheath plasma flow is described and compared with a large dataset of magnetosheath ion flow velocity measurements from Cluster and THEMIS spacecraft. The model is based on previous works by Kobel and Flückiger (1994) and Génot et al. (2011) and has been modified to overcome the restrictions of these models on the shape of model magnetopause and bow shock. Our model is compatible with any parabolic bow shock model and arbitrary magnetopause model. The model is relatively simple to implement and computationally inexpensive, and its only inputs are upstream solar wind parameters. Comparison with observed data yields a good correspondence: median error in the direction of flow velocity is comparable with the instrumental error, and flow magnitude is predicted with a reasonable accuracy (relative error in flow speed was less than 25% for 86.5% of observations).

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