290B Space Physics Seminar: THEMIS and MMS observations of the effects of multiple X-line magnetic reconnection

Seminar | March 12 | 1-2:10 p.m. | LeConte Hall, 325 Old

 Marit Øieroset, Space Sciences Laboratory, University of California Berkeley

 Space Sciences Laboratory (SSL)

I will present THEMIS and Magnetospheric MultiScale (MMS) observations of converging plasma jets from two reconnection X-lines at the Earth’s magnetopause. While two X-lines are often thought to form magnetic flux ropes, the magnetic field topology indicates that in these events the two X-lines produced tangled-up, interlinked magnetic flux tubes. At the interface of the converging jets a thin and compressed interface current sheet is observed. Interestingly, the interface current sheet was itself reconnecting, and produced exceptionally strong electron heating compared to the surrounding (converging) jets. The observations shed light on the evolution and energy release in 3D systems with multiple reconnection sites.

 salem@ssl.berkeley.edu, 510-643-2249