Phoenix—1 Observations of Equatorial Zone Particle Precipitation
The precipitation of magnetospheric particles at low altitude (160 – 300 km) near the geomagnetic equator during moderate geomagnetic conditions was studied by the ONR-602 experiment on board the S81-1 pallet mission in 1982. Significant fluxes of low energy (~1 MeV) protons were observed, with maximum intensity along the line of minimum magnetic field strength. These protons exhibit an altitude dependence that varies as the fifth power of the altitude, and a flux that is higher than that measured in previous missions (circa 1970). The source function, atmospheric loss processes and pitch angle distributions of these particles are investigated.
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