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A case study of isolated auroral spots based on DMSP data

AuthorZhou, Su; Chen, Yuqing; Zhang, Jin;
KeywordsIsolated auroral spots; Proton aurora; Subauroral electron precipitation

This study employed ultraviolet images and particle data to investigate isolated auroral spots away from the Earth\textquoterights auroral oval. Data from SSUSI (Special Sensor Ultraviolet Spectrographic Imager) and SSJ (Special Sensor J) mounted on the DMSP (Defence Meteorological Satellite Program) spacecraft were examined. The isolated auroral spots were observed by DMSP F16/SSUSI and F17/SSUSI on 29 May 2010 during the recovery phase of a moderate geomagnetic storm with a minimum SYM-H index of -70 nT. The auroral spots were observed between 18:00\textendash21:00 MLT and corotated with the Earth, but stayed almost at the same magnetic latitude (MLAT) of -60\textdegree. It is found that the isolated auroral spots were produced mainly by energetic ring current ions at energies above ~10\ keV. The enhancement in the electron flux with energy below ~200\ eV was also observed for the isolated auroral spots. The MLAT of the electron flux was nearly 2\textdegreehigher than that for the precipitating ions.

Year of Publication2020
JournalJournal of Atmospheric and Solar-Terrestrial Physics
Number of Pages105176
Date Published01/2020