Kinetic modeling of the interaction of solar wind discontinuities with the bow shock-magnetosheath-magnetopause system
- 1UCLA, Physics and Astronomy, Los Angeles, California, USA
- 2Centre for Plasma Astrophysics, Department of Mathematics, Katholieke Universiteit, Leuven, Belgium
- 3European Space Agency/ESTEC, Noordwijk, the Netherlands
- 4Applied Physics Laboratory, The Johns Hopkins University, Laurel, Maryland, USA
Modeling the interaction of solar wind discontinuities with the bow shock-magnetosheath-magnetopause system is an important step in comprehending the effects of solar wind structures on the magnetosphere. Our procedure is to first run a global MHD simulation to predict the overall configuration of the solar wind-magnetosphere system before the discontinuity interacts with the bow shock. Then fields and plasma moments within a large sub-domain of the global MHD simulation are used to set the initial conditions of an implicit PIC simulation of the interaction of the discontinuity with the dayside magnetosphere. This procedure allows us to follow the evolution of kinetic processes as the discontinuity interacts with the bow shock and propagates through the magnetosheath before impacting the dayside magnetopause. In this presentation, we show some results of the interaction of a rotational discontinuity where the interplanetary magnetic field, initially southward, turns northward. As expected, the discontinuity slows down abruptly after interacting with the bow shock, the transverse component of the magnetic field being greatly enhanced in the process. While the initial MHD state of the magnetosheath was laminar, kinetic waves and instabilities lead to a turbulent state for all plasma moments and electromagnetic fields. In particular, transients are observed ahead of the discontinuity as it propagates Earthward. At later stages of the simulation, the discontinuity interacts with the magnetopause. Magnetic field lines are bent strongly in the transverse direction, affecting reconnection processes with the production of large magnetic flux ropes.
How to cite: Berchem, J., Lapenta, G., Escoubet, P., and Wing, S.: Kinetic modeling of the interaction of solar wind discontinuities with the bow shock-magnetosheath-magnetopause system, EGU General Assembly 2023, Vienna, Austria, 24–28 Apr 2023, EGU23-4522, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu23-4522, 2023.