Simultaneous ground and satellite observations of an isolated proton arc at subauroral latitudes

K. Sakaguchi, K. Shiokawa, A. Leda, Y. Miyoshi, Y. Otsuka, T. Ogawa, M. Connors, E. F. Donovan, F. J. Rich

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We observed an isolated proton arc at the Athabasca station (MLAT: 62°N) in Canada on 5 September 2005, using a ground-based all-sky imager at wavelengths of 557.7 nm, 630.0 nm, and 486.1 nm (Hβ). This arc is similar to the detached proton arc recently observed by the IMAGE satellite [Immel et al., 2002]. The arc appeared at 0500-0640 UT (2100-2240 MLT), coincident with strong Pc 1 geomagnetic pulsations in the frequency range of the electromagnetic ion cyclotron (EMIC) wave. The isolated arc did not change its structure and intensity during the late growth and expansive phases of a small substorm that occurred at 0550 UT. From particle data obtained by the NOAA 17 satellite, we found that the isolated arc was associated with the localized enhancement of ion precipitation fluxes at an energy range of 30-80 keV at L ~ 4. Trapped ion flux enhancements (ring current ions) were also observed at two latitudinally separated regions. The localized ion precipitation was located at the outer boundary of the inner ring current ions. The DMSP F13 satellite observed signatures of an ionospheric plasma trough near the conjugate point of the arc in the Southern Hemisphere. The trough is considered to be connected to the plasmapause. These results indicate that the source region of the isolated arc was located near the plasmapause and in the ring current. We conclude that the observed isolated proton arc at subauroral latitudes was caused by the EMIC waves, which were generated near the plasmapause and resonantly scattered the ring current protons into the loss cone.

Original languageEnglish
Article numberA04202
JournalJournal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr. 2007


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