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  • Convection in the Magnetosphere-Ionosphere System

    Rights statement: Accepted for publication in Journal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics. Copyright 2020 American Geophysical Union. Further reproduction or electronic distribution is not permitted.

    Accepted author manuscript, 2.45 MB, PDF document

    Available under license: CC BY: Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License

  • 2019JA027541

    Final published version, 3.66 MB, PDF document

    Available under license: CC BY: Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License


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Convection in the Magnetosphere-Ionosphere System: a Multi-Mission Survey of its Response to IMF By Reversals

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Article numbere2019JA027541
<mark>Journal publication date</mark>13/10/2020
<mark>Journal</mark>Journal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics
Issue number10
Number of pages17
Publication StatusPublished
Early online date2/10/20
<mark>Original language</mark>English


Past studies have demonstrated that the interplanetary magnetic field (IMF) By component introduces asymmetries in the magnetosphere‐ionosphere (M‐I) system, though the exact timings involved are still unclear with two distinct mechanisms proposed. In this study, we statistically analyze convective flows from three regions of the M‐I system: the magnetospheric lobes, the plasma sheet, and the ionosphere. We perform superposed epoch analyses on the convective flows in response to reversals in the IMF By  orientation, to determine the flow response timescales of these regions. We find that the lobes respond quickly and reconfigure to the new IMF By  state within 30–40 min. The plasma sheet flows, however, do not show a clear response to the IMF By  reversal, at least within 4 hr postreversal. The ionospheric data, measured by the Super Dual Auroral Radar Network (SuperDARN), match their counterpart magnetospheric flows, with clear and prompt responses at ≥75° magnetic latitude (MLAT) but a less pronounced response at 60–70 MLAT. We discuss the potential implication of these results on the mechanisms for introducing the IMF By  component into the M‐I system.