• Dependence of the ionospheric convection pattern on the conductivity and the southward IMF

      Shue, Jih-Hong; Kan, J. R.; Akasofu, S.-I.; Biswas, N. N.; Rees, M. H.; Weimer, D. R. (1993)
      Electric field measurements from the DE-2 satellite were used to determine the location of the convection reversal boundary and the potential around this boundary under a combination of interplanetary magnetic field (IMF) and auroral electrojet conditions. The electric potential is obtained by the integration of the electric fields. The convection reversal boundary is defined in this study as where the potential has its absolute maximum and minimum values. The data were sorted into 18 categories according to two levels of the negative IMF $B\sb{z},$ three ranges of IMF $B\sb{y},$ and two substorm phases. The data were fit with both continuous and discontinuous boundaries to get a functional representation of boundary potentials and locations. A simple model is constructed by solving the Laplace's equation in order to illustrate the obtained boundary potentials and locations. The results show that the enhanced electric field in the midnight sector is associated with an intense westward electrojet current. It can also be seen that the convection reversal boundary is found to be discontinuous near midnight. The discontinuous convection reversal boundary on the dayside is related to the merging near dayside cusp region. The discontinuous convection reversal boundary on the nightside is related to the conductivity enhancement. The intrusion of the dawn cell into the dusk cell is due to nonuniformity of the Hall conductivity in the ionosphere. Another model is constructed by solving the current continuity equation with field-aligned current and nonuniform conductivity added. It can be found that a secondary convection reversal, which is detached from the dusk-cell convection reversal, appears in the evening-midnight sector within the polar cap when the IMF $B\sb{y}$ is positive and the conductivity is nonuniform. This convection reversal is attributed to be created by the B $\times$ V dynamo. Also, the inclusion of the region 2 field-aligned current leads to an enhancement of the electric field in the region between the region 1 and region 2 currents.