By using a magnetosphere-ionosphere (M-I) coupling model of polar cap arcs [Zhu et al., 1993], a systematic model study of the effects of ionospheric background conductivity on the formation of polar cap arcs has been conducted. The variations of the ionospheric background conductivity in the model study cover typical ionospheric conditions, including solar minimum, solar maximum, winter, and summer. The simulation results clearly indicate that the ionospheric background conductivity can dynamically affect the mesoscale features of polar cap arcs through a nonlinear M-I coupling process associated with the arcs.
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