We present observations of an equatorward detachment of the auroral arc from the main oval and magnetically conjugate measurements made by the Arase satellite in the inner magnetosphere. The all-sky imager at Gakona (magnetic latitude = 63.6°N), Alaska, shows the detachment of the auroral arc in both red and green lines at local midnight (∼0130–0230 MLT) on 30 March 2017. The electron density derived from the Arase in-situ observations shows that this arc occurred outside the plasmapause. At the arc crossing, the electron flux of energies ∼0.1–2 keV is found to be locally enhanced at L∼4.3–4.5. We estimated auroral intensities for both red and green lines by using the Arase low-energy (0.1–19 keV) electron flux data. The peak latitude of the estimated intensity shows reasonably good correspondence with the observed intensity mapped at the ionospheric footprints of the Arase satellite. These findings indicate that the observed arc detachment at Gakona was associated with the localized enhancement of low-energy electrons (∼0.1–2 keV) at the inner edge of the electron plasma sheet. Further, we employ the simulation results of the Community Coordinated Modeling Center (CCMC), the BATS-R-US–CIMI 3-D MHD code to understand the conditions in the inner magnetosphere around the time of detachment. Although the simulation could not reproduce the lower-energy component responsible for the arc detachment, it successfully reproduced two earthward convection events at the lower radial distance (R) (R ≤ ∼4) around the time of arc detachment and the features of enhanced convection in similarity with the observations.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Space and Planetary Science