The magnetosphere regions and boundaries models
The Earth's magnetosphere global structure is conditioned by the interaction of the Solar wind and Earth's magnetic field. http://www-spof.gsfc.nasa.gov/Education/Intro.html "The Exploration of the Earth's Magnetosphere".
About the modern Earth's magnetosphere status and the history of its exploration see the Home Page
This section paid the main attention to the magnetosphere topology, magnetospheric structures' and boundaries' shape and position, leaving a side the physical aspects.
Many various magnetospheric models are available in the NSSDC.
For the INTERBALL project situation analysis the following magnetospheric models are used.
Near-Earth Bowshock (BS) (Fairfield et al., 1971);
Magnetopause (MP) (Sibeck et al., 1991);
Neutral sheet (NS) (Fairfield, 1980);
Auroral oval (OVAL) (Feldstein et al. 1967);
Polar Cusp (CUSP) (K. Stasiewicz, 1991);
Solar wind (SW) - the region outside BS;
Magnetosheath (MS) - the region between BS and MP;
Boundary Layers (BL) including the Low Latitude Boundary Layer LLBL, High Latitude Boundary Layer HLBL and the mantle - the region inside MP at the distance of <= 1 RE from MP (RE = 6371.2 km);
Neutral sheet (NS) - region, centred by the simulative NS surface (Fairfield, 1980), with the thickness of 1 RE;
Tail plasma sheet (PS) - the region, centred by the simulative NS surface, with the thickness of 6 RE in the central (midnight) part, 14 RE near the tail magnetopause;
Radiation belt (RB) - the cavity between two surfaces, formed by the magnetic filled lines, corresponding to two L value: the L = 1.2 RE and L = 4.5 RE (L is the parameter of McIlwain, 1961);
Auroral field lines (AUR) region - the funnel-shape cavity restricted by the geocentric distance of the order of 6 RE, between surfaces formed by magnetic field lines emerged from the polar and equatorial OVAL borders;
Polar cap (CAP) - the cavity, restricted by the geocentric distance of about 10 RE, outside of the surface formed by field lines emerged from the OVAL polar boundary;
- Magnetic field External Sources (Tsyganenko 1987, 1989, 1990);
- Main magnetic field IGRF with 1975 - 1990/95 coefficients. For more information concerning to IGRF see the WWW site:
- Fairfield D. H., Average and unusual location of the Earth's magnetopause and bow shock, J. Geophys. Res. 1971, 76, 6700-6716.
- Fairfield D. H., A statistical determination of the shape and position of the geomagnetic neutral sheet, J. Geophys. Res. 1980, 85, 775-780.
- Feldstein Ya. I., Starkov G. V., Dynamic of auroral belt and polar geomagnetic disturbances, Planet. Space Sci. 1967, 15, 209-229.
- McIlwain C. E., Co-ordinates of mapping the distribution of magnetically trapped particles, J. Geophys. Res. 1961, 66, 3681-3691.
- Sibeck D. G., Lopez R. E. and Roelof E. C., Solar wind control of the magnetopause shape, location and motion, J. Geophys. Res., 1991, 96, 5489-5495
- Stasiewicz K., Polar Cusp Topology and Position as a Function of Interplanetary Magnetic Field and Magnetic Activity: Comparison of a Model with Viking and other Observations, J. Geophys. Res. September 1, 1991, 96, 15789-15800.
- Tsyganenko N. A., Global quantitative models of the geomagnetic field in the cislunar magnetosphere for different disturbance levels, Planet. Space Sci., 1987, 35, 1347-1358
- Tsyganenko N. A., A magnetospheric magnetic field model with a warped tail current sheet, Planet. Space Sci., 1989, 37, 5-20.
- Tsyganenko N. A. Quantitative models of the magnetospheric magnetic field: Methods and results, Planet. Space Sci., 1990, Rev. 54, 75.
Dr. Victoria Prokhorenko
Last modified 11 May 1999