A Statistical Study of FTE Orientations

Thursday, 18 December 2014
Andrii Lynnyk, University of Maryland College Park, College Park, MD, United States, David G Sibeck, NASA/GSFC, Greenbelt, MD, United States and Marcos V Dias Silveira, INPE, Sao Jose Dos Campos, SP, Brazil
We perform a statistical study of Flux Transfer Event (FTE) orientations for different interplanetary magnetic field conditions to determine the location and orientation of reconnection lines on the dayside magnetopause. Our analysis is based on more than 200 estimations of FTE boundary normals and on determinations of the FTE orientations themselves. We perform Minimum Variance Analysis of the THEMIS magnetic field data within and in the vicinity of the FTE boundaries. We discuss the role of different reconnection processes on the orientation of FTEs. We pay special attention to cases in which different methods give conflicting results and cases in which the orientations differ from those predicted by the models.