Classical and Anomalous Transport Processes in the Auroral Return Current Region

  1. T. E. Moore,
  2. J. H. Waite Jr.,
  3. T. W. Moorehead and
  4. W. B. Hanson
  1. S. B. Ganguli1 and
  2. P. J. Palmadesso2

Published Online: 18 MAR 2013

DOI: 10.1029/GM044p0171

Modeling Magnetospheric Plasma

Modeling Magnetospheric Plasma

How to Cite

Ganguli, S. B. and Palmadesso, P. J. (1988) Classical and Anomalous Transport Processes in the Auroral Return Current Region, in Modeling Magnetospheric Plasma (eds T. E. Moore, J. H. Waite, T. W. Moorehead and W. B. Hanson), American Geophysical Union, Washington, D. C.. doi: 10.1029/GM044p0171

Author Information

  1. 1

    Science Applications International Corporation, McLean, Virginia 22102

  2. 2

    Naval Research Laboratory, Washington, D.C. 20375

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 18 MAR 2013
  2. Published Print: 1 JAN 1988

ISBN Information

Print ISBN: 9780875900704

Online ISBN: 9781118664414



  • Space plasmas—Mathematical models;
  • Magnetosphere—Mathematical models;
  • Ionosphere—Mathematical models


The classical and anomalous tranpsort properties of a multifluid plasma consisting of H+, O+, and electron populations in the presence of auroral field-aligned return currents are investigated using a multimoment fluid model with anomalous transport coefficients. This approach offers the possibility of simulating large-scale dynamic phenomena without neglecting the important macroscopic consequences of microscopic processes such as anomalous resistivity, turbulent heating, etc. The macroscopic effects of the electrostatic ion-cyclotron (EIC) instability (perpendicular ion heating) and of an EIC-related anomalous resistivity mechanism which heats the electrons are included in the present version of the model. The responses of the outflowing ionospheric plasma to the application of current and instabilities are exhibited. Downward electron heat flow competes with upward convection and adiabatic effects to determine the direction of the electron temperature anisotropy. Resistive electron heating lowers the critical drift velocity for marginal EIC stability and leads to enhanced ion heating.