Potential waves for relativistic electron scattering and stochastic acceleration during magnetic storms

The possibility of electron stochastic energization to relativisitic energies (≥ 1 MeV) via resonant wave-particle interactions during a magnetic storm is explored. The minimum electron energy Emin for cyclotron resonant interaction with various electromagnetic waves is calculated for conditions representative of storm-times. Since Emin > 1 MeV for resonance with L-mode ion cyclotron waves, intense stormtime EMIC waves could contribute to relativistic electron loss, but not acceleration. Inside the plasmapause whistler mode waves, and highly oblique magnetosonic waves near the lower hybrid frequency, can resonate with electrons over the important energy range from ∼ 100 keV to ∼ 1 MeV. In low density regions outside the plasmapause, the whistler, RX, LO and Z modes can resonate with electrons over a similar energy range. These waves have the potential to contribute to the stochastic acceleration of electrons up to relativistic energies during magnetic storms.


Publication status:
Authors: Horne, Richard B., Thorne, Richard M.

On this site: Richard Horne
1 January, 1998
Geophysical Research Letters / 25
Digital Object Identifier (DOI):