Super Dual Auroral Radar Network (SuperDARN) observations show that ionospheric flow fluctuations of millihertz or lower-frequency range with horizontal velocities of a few hundred meters per second appeared in the subauroral to midlatitude region during a magnetic storm on 27 March 2017. A set of the radars have provided the first ever observations that the fluctuations propagate azimuthally both westward and eastward simultaneously, showing bifurcated phase propagation associated with substorm expansion. Concurrent observations near the conjugate site in the inner magnetosphere made by the Arase satellite provide evidence that multiple drifting clouds of electrons in the near-Earth equatorial plane were associated with the electric field fluctuations propagating eastward in the ionosphere. We interpret this event in terms of mesoscale pressure gradients carried by drifting ring current electrons that distort field lines one after another as they drift through the inner magnetosphere, causing eastward propagating ionospheric electric field fluctuations.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)