Magnetic Fields in the Earth’s Tail

  • Kenneth W. Behannon
Part of the Astrophysics and Space Science Library book series (ASSL, volume 17)


The initial mapping of the magnetic field in the geomagnetic tail out to a distance of 31 RE by IMP 1 established the basic structure of the tail. In addition to the generally steady well collimated nature of the field in the tail, a radius of approximately 20 RE out to a geocentric distance of 30 RE in the antisolar direction was deduced and the existence of a relatively thin (≼ 1 RE) neutral sheet separating oppositely directed fields was established (Ness, 1965; Speiser and Ness, 1967). Explorer 14 measurements showed a broad region of low field magnitude surrounding the field reversal region at a distance of 10 to 12 RE (Cahill, 1966). Observations of electrons and protons with E>100eV by the Vela satellites at geocentric distances between 15.5 and 20.5 RE showed that the plasma sheet surrounding the neutral sheet is often 4 to 6 RE thick near the midnight meridian, increasing to approximately twice that thickness near the dusk and dawn boundaries (Bame et al., 1967).


Solar Wind Plasma Sheet Neutral Line Neutral Sheet Geocentric Distance 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Anderson, K. A. and Lin, R. P.: 1969, Space Sciences Laboratory, University of California, Berkeley, Preprint, March 3.Google Scholar
  2. Bame, S. J., Asbridge, J. R., Felthauser, H. E., Hones, E. W., and Strong, I. B.: 1967, J. Geophys. Res. 72, 113.ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Behannon, K. W.: 1968, J. Geophys. Res. 73, 907.ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Behannon, K. W.: 1969, NASA-GSFC Preprint X-616-69-146.Google Scholar
  5. Behannon, K. W. and Ness, N. F.: 1969, in Physics of the Magnetosphere (ed. by R. L. Carovillano, J. F. McClay and H. R. Radoski), D. Reidel Publishing Company, Dordrecht-Holland, p. 409.Google Scholar
  6. Brandt, J. C.: 1967, Astrophys. J. 147, 201.ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Burlaga, L. F. and Ogilvie, K. W.: 1969, NASA-GSFC Preprint X-616-69-142.Google Scholar
  8. Canili, L. J.: 1966, Space Research IV, 662.Google Scholar
  9. Dessler, A. J.: 1968, J. Geophys. Res. 73, 209.ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Egidi, A., Pizzella, G. and Signorini, C.: 1969, J. Geophys. Res. 74, 2807.ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Fairfield, D. H.: 1968, J. Geophys. Res. 73, 6179.ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Mariani, F. and Ness, N. F.: 1969, NASA-GSFC Preprint X-616-69-54.Google Scholar
  13. Mihalov, J. D. and Sonett, C. P.: 1968, J. Geophys. Res. 73, 6837.ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Mihalov, J. D., Colburn, D. S., Currie, R. G., and Sonett, C. P.: 1968, J. Geophys. Res. 73, 943.ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Ness, N. F.: 1965, J. Geophys. Res. 70, 2989.ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Ness, N. F.: 1969, Rev. Geophys. 7, 97.ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Ness, N. F., Behannon, K. W., Cantarano, S. C., and Scearce, C. S.: 1967a, J. Geophys. Res. 72, 927.ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Ness, N. F., Scearce, C. S., and Cantarano, S. C.: 1967b, J. Geophys. Res. 72, 3769.ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Speiser, T. W. and Ness, N. F.: 1967, J. Geophys. Res. 72, 131.ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Spreiter, J. R. and Alksne, A. Y.: 1969, Planet. Space Sci. 17, 233.ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Strong, I. B., Asbridge, J. R., Bame, S. J., and Hundhausen, A.: 1967, in The Zodiacal Light and the Interplanetary Medium (ed. by J. L. Weinberg), NASA SP-150, NASA Technical Information Division, Washington, D.C., p. 365.Google Scholar
  22. Walters, G. K.: 1964, J. Geophys. Res. 69, 1769.ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Wolfe, J. H., Silva, R. W., McKibbin, D. D., and Mason, R. H.: 1967, J. Geophys. Res. 72, 4577.ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© D. Reidel Publishing Company, Dordrecht, Holland 1970

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kenneth W. Behannon
    • 1
  1. 1.Laboratory for Space SciencesNASA Goddard Space Flight CenterGreenbeltUSA

Personalised recommendations