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Keywords:

  • ionosphere;
  • magnetic field;
  • magnetosphere;
  • thermosphere

[1] The strength of the Earth's magnetic field changes over time. We use simulations with the Coupled Magnetosphere-Ionosphere-Thermosphere model to investigate how the magnetosphere, upper atmosphere, and solar quiet (Sq) geomagnetic variation respond as the geomagnetic dipole moment M varies between 2⋅1022 and 10⋅1022 Am2. We find that the magnetopause stand-off distance and the cross-polar cap potential increase, while the polar cap size decreases, with increasing M. Their dependence on M is stronger than predicted by previous studies. We also show for the first time that the shape of the magnetosphere starts to change for M ≤ 4⋅1022 Am2. This may be due to enhanced magnetopause erosion and/or to strong changes in the ionospheric conductance, which affect the field-aligned currents and the magnetic fields they create in the magnetosphere, thus modifying the magnetic pressure inside the magnetosphere. E × B drift velocities, Joule heating power, the global mean thermospheric temperature and the global mean height of the peak of the ionospheric F2 layer, hmF2, all increase with increasing M for low dipole moments, but all decrease with increasing M for larger dipole moments. The peak electron density of the F2 layer, NmF2, shows the opposite behavior. The Sq amplitude decreases with increasing M and this dependence can be roughly described by a power law scaling. Most scaling relations show a weak dependence on the solar activity level, which is likely associated with a change in the relative contributions to the Pedersen conductance from the upper and lower ionosphere, which scale differently with M.