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Finite element modeling of nonlinear dispersive field line resonances: Trapped shear Alfvén waves inside field‐aligned density structures

  • Author(s) / Creator(s)
  • Using a new two- dimensional nonlinear finite element model, we investigate the interaction of dispersive shear Alfven wave ( SAW) field line resonances ( FLRs) and ion acoustic waves in Earth's magnetosphere. We solve the full set of nonlinear reduced MHD equations self- consistently in arbitrary geometries. Initially, a Cartesian box model is used to demonstrate the reliability of our numerical solution in determining the linear and nonlinear evolution of FLRs. Then the full reduced MHD equations with the effects of electron inertia, ion Larmor radius correction, and electron thermal pressure are solved in dipolar and stretched magnetic topologies. We show that time- dependent dispersion and density steepening lead to localization of a highly structured FLR within an ionospheric ( equatorial) density cavity ( bump). When nonlinear effects are accounted for, we find that FLRs preferentially form in regions of low wave dispersion. Field line stretching and ponderomotive density redistribution lead to a significant reduction in FLR eigenfrequencies, bringing them into the range of observations. Nonlinear effects also cause a rapid acceleration of the timescale over which small perpendicular spatial scales appear. In our model, it is shown that density perturbations can be comparable to the equilibrium background density.

  • Date created
    2003-01-01
  • Subjects / Keywords
  • Type of Item
    Article (Published)
  • DOI
    https://doi.org/10.7939/R3862BS13
  • License
    © 2003 American Geophysical Union. This version of this article is open access and can be downloaded and shared. The original author(s) and source must be cited.
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  • Citation for previous publication
    • Lu, J. Y., Rankin, Robert, Marchand, Richard, Tikhonchuk, V. T., & Wanliss, J. (2003). Finite element modeling of nonlinear dispersive field line resonances: Trapped shear Alfvén waves inside field‐aligned density structures. Journal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics, 108(A11), [pp. 1-12]. http://doi.org/10.1029/2003JA010035
  • Link to related item
    http://doi.org/10.1029/2003JA010035