Whistler mode waves and Hall fields detected by MMS during a dayside magnetopause crossing


Le Contel O, Retinò A, Breuillard H, Mirioni L, Robert P, Chasapis A, Lavraud B, Chust T, Rezeau L, Wilder FD, et al. Whistler mode waves and Hall fields detected by MMS during a dayside magnetopause crossing. Geophysical Research Letters [Internet]. 2016;43 (12) :5943–5952.


We present Magnetospheric Multiscale (MMS) mission measurements during a full magnetopause crossing associated with an enhanced southward ion flow. A quasi-steady magnetospheric whistler mode wave emission propagating toward the reconnection region with quasi-parallel and oblique wave angles is detected just before the opening of the magnetic field lines and the detection of escaping energetic electrons. Its source is likely the perpendicular temperature anisotropy of magnetospheric energetic electrons. In this region, perpendicular and parallel currents as well as the Hall electric field are calculated and found to be consistent with the decoupling of ions from the magnetic field and the crossing of a magnetospheric separatrix region. On the magnetosheath side, Hall electric fields are found smaller as the density is larger but still consistent with the decoupling of ions. Intense quasi-parallel whistler wave emissions are detected propagating both toward and away from the reconnection region in association with a perpendicular anisotropy of the high-energy part of the magnetosheath electron population and a strong perpendicular current, which suggests that in addition to the electron diffusion region, magnetosheath separatrices could be a source region for whistler waves.