Inner radiation belt electron lifetimes due to whistler-induced electron precipitation (WEP) driven losses

Wave-particle interactions driven by whistler mode waves in the inner Van Allan belt is an important loss process for the energetic electrons found in this region. In this paper we seek to investigate the significance of Whistler-Induced Electron Precipitation (WEP) to inner belt electron lifetimes, by combining experimental satellite results, ionospheric remote observations, and global lightning distributions. We find that long-term WEP driven losses at L = 2.23 are more significant than all other inner radiation belt loss processes for electron kinetic energies in the range 40–350 keV. This suggests a faster depletion rate and thus lower lifetimes than previously calculated. Thunderstorm generated whistlers are an important factor for determining the lifetimes of medium energy electrons in the inner belt.


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Authors: Rodger, Craig J., Clilverd, Mark A. ORCIDORCID record for Mark A. Clilverd

On this site: Mark Clilverd
1 October, 2002
Geophysical Research Letters / 29
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