Numerical studies on the dynamics of the ionospheric current system

GT Birk, U Becker, J Dreher, Thomas Neukirch

Research output: Other contribution


We study the dynamics of the ionospheric current system by means of computational simulations. The initial configuration for the simulations represents numerical solutions of a stationary two-dimensional fluid model that focuses on the closure of one pair of field-aligned electric currents in the lower ionosphere. In this model the momentum transfer between the plasma and the neutral gas is included as well as the Hall term. The dynamical evolution of the current system caused by enhanced magnetospheric sheared plasma flows is investigated by means of numerical simulations carried out with a plasma-neutral gas fluid code. It is shown that in a self-consistent fluid model the intensification of electric field dominated auroral electrojets in the morning and evening sectors of the auroral oval can be understood as the ionospheric response to enhanced magnetospheric plasma convection. (C) 1998 COSPAR. Published by Elsevier Science Ltd.

Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 1998




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