Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
Abstract The results of studying the interaction of two types of the solar wind (magnetic clouds and solar wind of extremely low density) with the Earth's magnetosphere are discussed. This study is based of the INTERBALL space project measurements and on the other ground-based and space observations. For moderate variations of the solar wind and interplanetary magnetic field (IMF) parameters, the response of the magnetosphere is similar to its response to similar changes in the absence of magnetic clouds and depends on a previous history of IMF variations. Extremely large density variations on the interplanetary shocks, and on leading and trailing edges of the clouds result in a strong deformation of the magnetosphere, in large-scale motion of the geomagnetic tail, and in the development of magnetic substorms and storms. The important consequences of these processes are: (1) the observation of regions of the magnetosphere and its boundaries at great distances from the average location; (2) density and temperature variations in the outer regions of the magnetosphere; (3) multiple crossings of geomagnetic tail boundaries by a satellite; and (4) bursty fluxes of electrons and ions in the magnetotail, auroral region, and the polar cap. Several polar activations and substorms can develop during a single magnetic cloud arrival; a greater number of these events are accompanied, as a rule, by the development of a stronger magnetic storm. A gradual, but very strong, decrease of the solar wind density on May 10–12, 1999, did not cause noticeable change of geomagnetic indices, though it resulted in considerable expansion of the magnetosphere.
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