Thin current sheet evolution as seen in observations, empirical models and MHD simulations

T.I. Pulkkinen, M Wiltberger

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review


The inner and midtail current sheet is examined during a substorm on Dec 10, 1996 using multispacecraft observations, empirical models, and global MHD simulations. Both the simulation and empirical magnetic field model show good agreement with observations, which substantially increases the confidence in both methods. Both locate the thin current sheet inner edge at similar to 7 R-E, and give a scale size of similar to 15 R-E in tailward and cross-tail directions. The MHD simulation confirms the empirical model result that the thin current sheet remained stable after a local auroral breakup and indicates that the activity followed from flow channels generated at similar to 40 R-E independent of the thin current sheet evolution closer to the Earth.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1363-1366
Number of pages4
JournalGeophysical Research Letters
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2000
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed



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