Thumbnail
Access Restriction
Open

Author Singh, N.
Source United States Department of Energy Office of Scientific and Technical Information
Content type Text
Language English
Subject Keyword PHYSICS ♦ OXYGEN IONS ♦ DYNAMICS ♦ TRAPPING ♦ HEATING ♦ TRANSVERSE ENERGY ♦ IONOSPHERE
Abstract Time response of O{sup +} ions to transverse ion heating in the polar ionosphere is studied by means of a particle code. Here the author deals with relatively low levels of heating over a few minutes yielding superthermal ions energiezed up to a few eV. Under the influence of the upward mirror and downward gravitational forces, most of the heated ions are trapped between the topside ionosphere and some high altitude depending on their perpendicualr energies. A few ions with sufficiently large perpendicular energy escape the gravitational pull, and the flux of such ions increases with the heating level. The trapped ions bounce back and forth. During the first upward transit of the heated ions, the transient outflux from the topside ionosphere is as large as 10{sup 7} ions cm{sup {minus}2}s{sup {minus}1} and it subsequently decays to quite small values in a few tens of minutes. A large transient outflux ({approx}3x10{sup 8} ions cm{sup {minus}2}s{sup {minus}1}) consisting of unheated ions develops even below the heating region, lasting over just a few minutes. As the ions having relatively large energies continue their upward journey, and the less energetic ones begin to fall down, the O{sup +} drift velocity ranges from a relatively large negative value (downward) just above the dense O{sup +} plasma in the topside ionosphere to a large positive value at high altitudes. Eventually the O{sup +} density profile becomes nearly stable but remains extended with significantly enhanced O{sup +} density at high altitudes. A consequence of trapping of the ions by the downward gravitational force is that the kinetic energy of the ions decreases with the increasing altitude; the coldest ions appear near the top of apex of the trapped ion trajectory, while the warmest ions appear near the bottom of the flux tube. Such cold ions are likely to contribute to the thermal O{sup +} population observed at altitudes of several thousand kilometers. 18 refs., 14 figs.
ISSN 01480227
Educational Use Research
Learning Resource Type Article
Publisher Date 1996-03-01
Publisher Place United States
Journal Journal of Geophysical Research
Volume Number 101
Issue Number A3


Open content in new tab

   Open content in new tab