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Nonlin. Processes Geophys., 25, 39-54, 2018
https://doi.org/10.5194/npg-25-39-2018
© Author(s) 2018. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
Review article
30 Jan 2018
Intermittent turbulence in the heliosheath and the magnetosheath plasmas based on Voyager and THEMIS data
Wiesław M. Macek1,2, Anna Wawrzaszek2, and Beata Kucharuk1 1Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences, Cardinal Stefan Wyszyński University, Wóycickiego 1/3, 01-938 Warsaw, Poland
2Space Research Centre, Polish Academy of Science, Bartycka 18A, 00-716 Warsaw, Poland
Abstract. Turbulence is complex behavior that is ubiquitous in space, including the environments of the heliosphere and the magnetosphere. Our studies on solar wind turbulence including the heliosheath, and even at the heliospheric boundaries, also beyond the ecliptic plane, have shown that turbulence is intermittent in the entire heliosphere. As is known, turbulence in space plasmas often exhibits substantial deviations from normal Gaussian distributions. Therefore, we analyze the fluctuations of plasma and magnetic field parameters also in the magnetosheath behind the Earth's bow shock. Based on THEMIS observations, we have already suggested that turbulence behind the quasi-perpendicular shock is more intermittent with larger kurtosis than that behind the quasi-parallel shocks. Following this study, we would like to present a detailed analysis of intermittent anisotropic turbulence in the magnetosheath depending on various characteristics of plasma behind the bow shock and now also near the magnetopause. In particular, for very high Alfvénic Mach numbers and high plasma beta we have clear non-Gaussian statistics in the directions perpendicular to the magnetic field. On the other hand, for directions parallel to this field the kurtosis is small and the plasma is close to equilibrium. However, the level of intermittency for the outgoing fluctuations seems to be similar to that for the ingoing fluctuations, which is consistent with approximate equipartition of energy between the oppositely propagating Alfvén waves. We hope that the difference in characteristic behavior of these fluctuations in various regions of space plasmas can help to detect some complex structures in space missions in the near future.

Citation: Macek, W. M., Wawrzaszek, A., and Kucharuk, B.: Intermittent turbulence in the heliosheath and the magnetosheath plasmas based on Voyager and THEMIS data, Nonlin. Processes Geophys., 25, 39-54, https://doi.org/10.5194/npg-25-39-2018, 2018.
Publications Copernicus
Short summary
The aim of this review is a comparison of intermittency in the heliosphere and the magnetosphere. We show that turbulence in the heliosheath and even at the heliospheric boundaries is intermittent. Moreover, analysis of turbulence in the magnetosheath shows that for very high Alfvénic Mach numbers and high plasma beta we have non-Gaussian statistics in the transverse directions. However, for directions parallel to the magnetic fields, the plasma is close to equilibrium.
The aim of this review is a comparison of intermittency in the heliosphere and the...
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