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Transient Structures and Stream Interaction Regions in the Solar Wind: Results from EISCAT Interplanetary Scintillation, STEREO HI and Venus Express ASPERA-4 Measurements

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal article

Published

  • Gareth Dorrian
  • Andy Breen
  • Jackie Davies
  • Alexis Rouillard
  • Richard Fallows
  • Ian Whittaker
  • Daniel Brown
  • Richard Harrison
  • Chris Davis
  • Manuel Grande
Journal publication date2010
JournalSolar Physics
Journal number1-2
Volume265
Number of pages24
Pages207-231
Original languageEnglish

Abstract

We discuss the detection and evolution of a complex series of transient and quasi-static solar-wind structures in the days following the well-known comet 2P/Encke tail disconnection event in April 2007. The evolution of transient solar-wind structures ranging in size from <105 km to >106 km was characterised using one-minute time resolution obser- vation of Interplanetary Scintillation (IPS) made using the European Incoherent SCATter (EISCAT) radar system. Simultaneously, the global structure and evolution of these features was characterised by the Heliospheric Imagers (HI) on the Solar TERrestrial RElations Ob- servatory (STEREO) spacecraft, placing the IPS observations in context. Of particular in- terest was the observation of one transient in the slow wind, apparently being swept up and entrained by a Stream Interaction Region (SIR). The SIR itself was later detected in-situ at Venus by the Analyser of Space Plasma and Energetic Atoms (ASPERA-4) instrument on the Venus Express (VEX) spacecraft. The availability of such diverse data sources over a range of different time resolutions enables us to develop a global picture of these com- plex events that would not have been possible if these instruments were used in isolation. We suggest that the range of solar-wind transients discussed here may be the interplanetary counterparts of transient structures previously reported from coronagraph observations and are likely to correspond to transient magnetic structures reported in in-situ measurements in interplanetary space. The results reported here also provide the first indication of heliocen- tric distances at which transients become entrained.