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Title: Influence of ion outflow in coupled geospace simulations: 2. Sawtooth oscillations driven by physics-based ion outflow: SAWTOOTH OSCILLATIONS AND ION OUTFLOW
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Publication Date:
Journal Name:
Journal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics
Page Range or eLocation-ID:
9688 to 9700
Wiley Blackwell (John Wiley & Sons)
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
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  1. Abstract

    The ionosphere is one of the important sources for magnetospheric plasma, particularly for heavy ions with low charge states. We investigate the effect of solar illumination on the number flux of ion outflow using data obtained by the Fast Auroral SnapshoT (FAST) satellite at 3000–4150 km altitude from 7 January 1998 to 5 February 1999. We derive empirical formulas between energy inputs and outflowing ion number fluxes for various solar zenith angle ranges. We found that the outflowing ion number flux under sunlit conditions increases more steeply with increasing electron density in the loss cone or with increasing precipitating electron density (> 50 eV), compared to the ion flux under dark conditions. Under ionospheric dark conditions, weak electron precipitation can drive ion outflow with small averaged fluxes (~ 107 cm−2 s−1). The slopes of relations between the Poynting fluxes and outflowing ion number fluxes show no clear dependence on the solar zenith angle. Intense ion outflow events (> 108 cm−2 s−1) occur mostly under sunlit conditions (solar zenith angle < 90°). Thus, it is presumably difficult to drive intense ion outflows under dark conditions, because of a lack of the solar illumination (low ionospheric density and/or small scale height owing to low plasma temperature).

    Graphical abstract