The CDAW-9 Event C focused upon the early part of 3 May 1986 when a large substorm onset occurred at 0111 UT. By modifying the Tsyganenko 1989 magnetic field model, we construct a model in which the near-Earth current systems are enhanced with time to describe the observed development of the tail magnetic field during the growth phase. The cross-tail current intensity and the thickness of the current sheet are determined by comparison with three space-craft in the near-Earth tail. The location of the auroral bulge as recorded by the Viking imager is mapped to the equatorial current sheet. The degree of chaotization of the thermal electrons is estimated, and the consequences to the tail stability towards ion tearing are discussed. We conclude that the mapping of the brightening region in the auroral oval corresponds to the regions in the tail where the current sheet may be unstable towards ion tearing.
- TAIL CURRENT SHEET