MAGNETOTAIL SCIENCE AND AURORA VIEWING

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Wednesday, May 1, 2013

HAO Scientist Michael Wiltberger attended the AGU Chapman Conference on Fundamental Properties and Processes of Magnetotails in Reykjavik, Iceland, March 10-15, 2013.

Aurora Image
Aurora Image
Aurora Image
All aurora images photographed by HAO's Mike Wiltberger.

The conference gathered experts primarily from Europe and the United States to discuss processes occurring in terrestrial and other planetary magnetotails. Dr. Wiltberger gave an invited talk discussing his recent work using the multi-fluid version of the LFM global magnetosphere simulation studying the impacts of ionospheric plasma on the evolution of the Earth’s magnetotail. Since other planetary magnetospheres have significant ion sources this work was complemented by other presentations at the meeting. The magnetotail plays a vital role in turning solar wind input into space weather consequences including driving the aurora.

Scientists throughout HAO AIM section are involved in research related to space weather. One of the fundamental questions that needs to addressed is when, where, and how much energy is deposited in the ionosphere by the aurora. These answers can then be included in our community models such as the TIEGCM and CMIT allowing for better prediction of the consequences of major space weather events.

The workshop took place at the perfect time and in the perfect place for aurora viewing. Michael had the opportunity to view the aurora borealis first-hand and brought home a few stunning images.

Link: AGU Chapman Conference on Fundamental Properties and Processes of Magnetotails