Theory of Neutral Sheets
The behavior of neutral sheets is important, particularly for understanding substorms. The theory is now developing into an extensive subject as the sheet is decomposed into regions in which different approximations are valid and where different instabilities must be considered. The first breakdown of the sheet is into regions with normal magnetic component B z in different ranges. The case of negligible B z has been extensively studied by Cowley (1971a, b). The geometry of the cross section is important and there is a further breakdown into regions with differing behavior. The reconnection is found to be concentrated at the dusk end and effects arise which drive field aligned currents.
Possible electrostatic instabilities are outlined. Our outlook has evolved from instabilities in the y direction, through those in the x direction until now interest is concentrated on those in the zdirection.
KeywordsSolar Wind Sheet Current Plasma Sheet Adiabatic Approximation Polar Wind
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