Generation of extremely low frequency chorus in Van Allen radiation belts

Academic Article


  • AbstractRecent studies have shown that chorus can efficiently accelerate the outer radiation belt electrons to relativistic energies. Chorus, previously often observed above 0.1 equatorial electron gyrofrequency fce, was generated by energetic electrons originating from Earth's plasma sheet. Chorus below 0.1 fce has seldom been reported until the recent data from Van Allen Probes, but its origin has not been revealed so far. Because electron resonant energy can approach the relativistic level at extremely low frequency, relativistic effects should be considered in the formula for whistler mode wave growth rate. Here we report high‐resolution observations during the 14 October 2014 small storm and firstly demonstrate, using a fully relativistic simulation, that electrons with the high‐energy tail population and relativistic pitch angle anisotropy can provide free energy sufficient for generating chorus below 0.1 fce. The simulated wave growth displays a very similar pattern to the observations. The current results can be applied to Jupiter, Saturn, and other magnetized planets.
  • Authors

  • Xiao, Fuliang
  • Liu, Si
  • Tao, Xin
  • Su, Zhenpeng
  • Zhou, Qinghua
  • Yang, Chang
  • He, Zhaoguo
  • He, Yihua
  • Gao, Zhonglei
  • Baker, DN
  • Spence, Harlan
  • Reeves, GD
  • Funsten, HO
  • Blake, JB
  • Status

    Publication Date

  • March 2017
  • Published In


  • ELF chorus waves
  • RBSP results
  • relativistic distribution
  • wave-particle interaction
  • Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Start Page

  • 3201
  • End Page

  • 3211
  • Volume

  • 122
  • Issue

  • 3