EGU23-10258, updated on 14 Sep 2023
EGU General Assembly 2023
© Author(s) 2023. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Earth’s magnetosphere dynamics during “forced breathing” due to solar wind periodic density structures

Simone Di Matteo1,2, Larry Kepko2, Nicholeen Viall2, Aaron Breneman2, Alexa Halford2, and Umberto Villante3
Simone Di Matteo et al.
  • 1The Catholic University of America, Department of Physics, Washington DC, USA (
  • 2NASA - Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, MD, USA
  • 3University of L'Aquila, Department of Physical and Chemical Sciences, L'Aquila, IT

In the solar wind density, we often observe periodic fluctuations on time scales ranging from a few minutes to a few hours which we refer to as Periodic Density Structures (PDSs). The PDSs belong to the class of “meso-scale structures” with radial length scales greater than or equal to the size of the Earth’s dayside magnetosphere. The periodic character of these transients (≈0.2-4.0 mHz) can determine periodic compressional fluctuations of the Earth’s magnetic field at similar frequencies (“forced breathing” mode). The corresponding time scales overlap with the frequency range of Pc5 Ultra Low Frequency (ULF) waves (≈1.7-6.7 mHz). The compressional “forced breathing” fluctuations are often global and impact the entire Earth’s magnetosphere system/dynamics.  Using a recently developed spectral analysis approach applied to magnetic field observations at satellites and ground stations, we were able to differentiate directly driven magnetic field oscillations from Pc5 ULF waves triggered by other sources. Here, we discuss clear examples of such a directly driven process also showing effects on radiation belt electron dynamics and loss.

How to cite: Di Matteo, S., Kepko, L., Viall, N., Breneman, A., Halford, A., and Villante, U.: Earth’s magnetosphere dynamics during “forced breathing” due to solar wind periodic density structures, EGU General Assembly 2023, Vienna, Austria, 23–28 Apr 2023, EGU23-10258,, 2023.