Modelling of Plasmaspheric Flows with an Equatorial Heat Source for Electrons

  1. Gordon R. Wilson
  1. S. M. Guiter and
  2. T. I. Gombosi

Published Online: 18 MAR 2013

DOI: 10.1029/GM062p0157

Modeling Magnetospheric Plasma Processes

Modeling Magnetospheric Plasma Processes

How to Cite

Guiter, S. M. and Gombosi, T. I. (2013) Modelling of Plasmaspheric Flows with an Equatorial Heat Source for Electrons, in Modeling Magnetospheric Plasma Processes (ed G. R. Wilson), American Geophysical Union, Washington, D. C.. doi: 10.1029/GM062p0157

Author Information

  1. Space Physics Research Laboratory, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109-2143

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 18 MAR 2013
  2. Published Print: 1 JAN 1991

ISBN Information

Print ISBN: 9780875900285

Online ISBN: 9781118663905



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


A time-dependent three fluid (H+ and O+ ions and electrons) one-stream interhemispheric plasma flow model is used to investigate plasmaspheric refilling. In the model, the coupled time-dependent hydrodynamic equations (continuity, momentum and energy) of a two-ion quasineutral, currentless plasma are solved for a closed geomagnetic field line. for the present set of calculations, an L = 2 field line was used. Energy deposition from the magnetosphere was simulated by including an equatorial heat source for electrons. A steady-state solution was found and used as the initial condition in a subsequent simulation of the effect of a density depletion. The density depletion was modeled by reducing the densities by an arbitrary factor above 2500 km altitude, while keeping the velocities and temperatures unchanged. Shock structures develop which move up the field line, meeting and reflecting at the equator. The reflected shocks are absorbed by the dense neutral atmosphere when they reach the model flux tube boundaries. After the upwelling streams collide, refilling occurs from the equator downward for two to three hours; thereafter, there is steady refilling from the ionospheres upward.