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Experimental Studies of Wave Particle Interactions in Space Using Particle Correlators: Results and Future Developments

posted on 2023-06-08, 05:03 authored by M P Gough, A M Buckley, T Carozzi, Natalia BeloffNatalia Beloff
The technique of particle correlation measures directly electron modulations that result from naturally occurring and actively stimulated wave-particle interactions in space plasmas. In the past this technique has been used for studies of beam-plasma interactions, caused by both natural auroral electron beams via sounding rockets and by artificially generated electron beams on Space Shuttle missions (STS-46, STS-75). It has also been applied to studies of how electrons become energised by waves injected from in-situ transmitters (e.g OEDIPUS-C sounding rocket). All four ESA Cluster-H spacecraft launched in 2000 to study the outer magnetosphere, cusp, and bow shock were implemented with electron correlators. Here the prevalent weaker wave-particle interactions have been more difficult to extract, however, the application of new statistical algorithms has permitted these correlators to provide a novel insight into the plasma turbulence that occurs. Present work involves technical improvements to both sensor design and correlator implementation that enable many electron energy-angle combinations to be simultaneously monitored for wave-particle interactions. A broad energy-angle range spectrograph connected to a multi-channel, multi-frequency range FPGA implemented array of correlators. is scheduled to fly early 2004. Neural network techniques previously flown on STS-46 and STS-75, and statistical tests developed for Cluster-H will be used on-board to select data to be transmitted.


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  • Published









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  • paper

Event name

Conference on Future Trends and Needs in Science and Engineering for Plasma Physics in Space

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  • Engineering and Design Publications


This paper presents the performance and future applications of the Particle Correlator instruments designed and built at the University, these instruments effectively compress data, hence making a direct saving on costly telemetry usage. The high time resolution measurements represent an enhancement in technical performance. The NASA Group Achievement Certificate was awarded to the first three authors in August 2004 for work on the Cluster II mission (instrumented with Particle Correlators). These new correlation techniques have also been incorporated into future space instruments to be flown on the International Space Station in 2008 and Solar Orbiter mission in 2015.

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ATY Lui, RA Treumann

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