Impact of an Event-Specific Plasma Density Model for Modeling the October 8-9, 2012, Event with the LANL DREAM3D Diffusion Code

Tuesday, 16 December 2014
Gregory Cunningham1, Weichao Tu1, Steven Morley1, Yue Chen1, John Haidecuk2, Sebastian De Pascuale3 and Craig Kletzing3, (1)Los Alamos National Laboratory, Los Alamos, NM, United States, (2)University of Michigan Ann Arbor, Ann Arbor, MI, United States, (3)University of Iowa, Iowa City, IA, United States
Modeling the variation of the MeV electron phase space density in the inner magnetosphere during active times is sensitive to many parameters, including the initial and time-varying boundary conditions, VLF wave spectral properties, plasma density, and magnetic field. Historically, diffusion codes like LANL’s DREAM3D have relied on the statistically-derived dependence of these parameters on geomagnetic indices, e.g. the wave intensity as a function of the AE index. However, the large number of satellites currently sampling the inner magnetosphere presents modelers with an unparalleled opportunity to create ‘event-specific’ models for many of these parameters. Toward this goal, we recently showed that using an event-specific model of the chorus wave intensity, built from proxy observations of low-energy electron precipitation observed by POES, along with a low-energy time-varying boundary condition informed by the Van Allen Probes, allows DREAM3D to reproduce the large enhancement of PSD for MeV electrons observed during the October 8-9, 2012, storm. One major limitation of this work is the fact that we used the static Sheeley plasma density model and a dipole magnetic field. Here we will discuss new results that use measurements of the plasma density inferred from the Van Allen Probes’ EMFISIS instrument to build an event-specific, global, time-dependent model of the plasma density that we use in DREAM3D in combination with the Tsyganenko 2004 storm-time model of the magnetic field. We show that this combination of plasma density and magnetic field model reproduce the ratio of cyclotron frequency to plasma frequency reported by EMFISIS during the entirety of the October 8-9, 2012, storm at all L-shells of interest, whereas our earlier results did not use the correct ratio at most locations and times. Because this ratio is a key parameter governing the effectiveness of chorus waves in accelerating electrons to higher energy, our new DREAM3D results resolve several discrepancies with the data that our previous calculation suffered from. Our ability to use an event-specific, time-dependent, model of the plasma density to calculate diffusion coefficients, previously beyond our computational capability, is enabled by a novel fast algorithm that we will also describe for the first time.