Statistical studies of plasma waves and backstreaming electrons in the terrestrial electron foreshock observed by Geotail

Y. Kasaba, H. Matsumoto, Y. Omura, R. R. Anderson, T. Mukai, Y. Saito, T. Yamamoto, S. Kokubun

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38 Citations (Scopus)


We present statistical studies of the direction finding of 2fp radiation and the spatial distribution of plasma waves and energetic particles in the terrestrial electron foreshock observed by Geotail. First, we investigate the geometry of the electron foreshock which is assumed to be the "2fp radio source." The 2fp radio source is likely to be in the leading region of the electron foreshock where the most intense Langmuir waves are observed. The Langmuir wave activities and the population of energetic electrons gradually decrease in the region beyond 10 RE from the contact point. The decreasing rate of Langmuir wave activity is very small, about 10-0.008 /RE. We also find that in the region around the contact point of the tangential interplanetary magnetic field (IMF) lines and the bow shock, the observed amplitude of the 2fp radiation seems to become weak. We think that it is due to the weak activities of Langmuir waves in the region close to the contact point and/or the directivity of 2fp radiation along the tangential IMF line. Next, we investigate the influence of the solar wind conditions on the activities in the electron foreshock. We confirm a positive correlation of the 2fp radio activity with the solar wind kinetic energy flux and a decrease of 2fp radio activity with decreasing IMF cone angle resulting in IMF lines tangent to the far flank of the bow shock. The 2fp radio activity is more affected by both parameters than the amplitude of Langmuir waves is affected. This suggests that the 2fp radio emissivity is very sensitive to the energy of Langmuir waves as expected from the generation process of 2fp radiation. Such high sensitivity also supports the concentration of the radio emissivity in the leading region of the electron foreshock and the limitation of the radio source extension along the magnetic field line. We also reinvestigate the comparison between the terrestrial and Venusian foreshocks. The differences between them suggest the nonsimilarity of shocks with different sizes.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1999JA900408
Pages (from-to)79-103
Number of pages25
JournalJournal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics
Issue numberA1
Publication statusPublished - 2000 Jan 1
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geochemistry and Petrology
  • Geophysics
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Space and Planetary Science
  • Atmospheric Science
  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Oceanography


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