Articles | Volume 14, issue 4
Nonlin. Processes Geophys., 14, 535–541, 2007

Special issue: Nonlinear waves and turbulence in space

Nonlin. Processes Geophys., 14, 535–541, 2007

  20 Aug 2007

20 Aug 2007

Spectral scaling in the turbulent Earth's plasma sheet revisited

Z. Vörös2,1, W. Baumjohann1, R. Nakamura1, A. Runov1, M. Volwerk3,1, Y. Asano4, D. Jankovičová2, E. A. Lucek5, and H. Rème6 Z. Vörös et al.
  • 1Space Research Institute, Austrian Academy of Sciences, Graz, Austria
  • 2Institute of Atmospheric Physics, Prague, Czech Republic
  • 3Max-Plank-Institut für extraterrestrische Physik, Garching, Germany
  • 4Tokyo Institute of Technology, Japan
  • 5Imperial College, London, UK
  • 6CESR/CNSR, Toulouse, France

Abstract. Bursty bulk flow associated magnetic fluctuations exhibit at least three spectral scaling ranges in the Earth's plasma sheet. Two of the three scaling ranges can be associated with multi-scale magnetohydrodynamic turbulence between the spatial scales from ~100 km to several RE (RE is the Earth's radius). These scales include the inertial range and below ~0.5 RE a steepened scaling range, theoretically not fully understood yet. It is shown that, in the near-Earth plasma sheet, the inertial range can be robustly identified only if multi-scale quasi stationary (MSQS) data intervals are selected. Multiple bursty flow associated magnetic fluctuations, however, exhibit 1/f type scaling indicating that large-scale fluctuations are controlled by multiple uncorrelated driving sources of the bulk flows (e.g. magnetic reconnection, instabilities).