Ion-Acoustic Wave Instability at VLF in the Polar Wind.
Research rept. Nov 69-Jul 70,
AEROSPACE CORP EL SEGUNDO CALIF LAB OPERATIONS
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Calculations based on plasma kinetic theory reveal that ion-acoustic waves in the ELF and VLF frequency bands become unstable in the polar wind when the relative flow velocity between the hydrogen ions and oxygen ions enters the range 5-10 kmsec. Either of two distinct roots of the dispersion equation can exhibit growth, depending upon the relative composition of the plasma and the relative flow velocity. Electrostatic waves in the appropriate frequency range have been observed at altitudes 2500-4500 km over the polar regions by a VLF receiver on the OV3-3 satellite. These waves may be important in impeding the escape of polar-wind hydrogen and helium ions. Author
- Atmospheric Physics
- Plasma Physics and Magnetohydrodynamics