Time-dependent flows in the coupled solar wind-magnetosphere-ionosphere system
Cowley, S.W.H. and Lockwood, M. (1996) Time-dependent flows in the coupled solar wind-magnetosphere-ionosphere system. Advances in Space Research, 18 (8). pp. 141-150. ISSN 02731177
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To link to this article DOI: 10.1016/0273-1177(95)00972-8
Concepts of time-dependent flow in the coupled solar wind-magnetosphere-ionosphere system are discussed and compared with the frequently-adopted steady-state paradigm. Flows are viewed as resulting from departures of the system from equilibrium excited by dayside and nightside reconnection processes, with the flows then taking the system back towards a new equilibrium configuration. The response of the system to reconnection impulses, continuous but unbalanced reconnection and balanced steady-state reconnection are discussed in these terms. It is emphasized that in the time-dependent case the ionospheric and interplanetary electric fields are generally inductively decoupled from each other; a simple mapping of the interplanetary electric field along equipotential field lines into the ionosphere occurs only in the electrostatic steady-state case.