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Title: Dispersed Relativistic Electron Precipitation Patterns Between the Ion and Electron Isotropy Boundaries

Relativistic electron precipitation to the Earth's atmosphere is an important loss mechanism of inner magnetosphere electrons, contributing significantly to the dynamics of the radiation belts. Such precipitation may be driven by electron resonant scattering by middle‐latitude whistler‐mode waves at dawn to noon; by electromagnetic ion cyclotron (EMIC) waves at dusk; or by curvature scattering at the isotropy boundary (at the inner edge of the electron plasma sheet anywhere on the nightside, from dusk to dawn). Using low‐altitude ELFIN and near‐equatorial THEMIS measurements, we report on a new type of relativistic electron precipitation that shares some properties with the traditional curvature scattering mechanism (occurring on the nightside and often having a clear energy/L‐shell dispersion). However, it is less common than the typical electron isotropy boundary and it is observed most often during substorms. It is seen equatorward of (and well separated from) the electron isotropy boundary and around or poleward of the ion isotropy boundary (the inner edge of the ion plasma sheet). It may be due to one or more of the following mechanisms: EMIC waves in the presence of a specific radial profile of the cold plasma density; a regional suppression of the magnetic field enhancing curvature scattering locally; and/or electron resonant scattering by kinetic Alfvén waves.

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Author(s) / Creator(s):
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Publisher / Repository:
DOI PREFIX: 10.1029
Date Published:
Journal Name:
Journal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics
Medium: X
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
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