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Characteristics of the Termination Shock: Insights from Voyager

Cummings, A. C. and Stone, E. C. (2005) Characteristics of the Termination Shock: Insights from Voyager. In: The Physics of Collisionless Shocks: 4th Annual IGPP International Astrophysics Conference. AIP Conference Proceedings. No.781. American Institute of Physics , Melville, NY, pp. 273-277. ISBN 073540268X.

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We examine the energy spectra obtained from the cosmic ray instrument on the Voyager 1 spacecraft during 2002/215 through 2005/60. We find that the energy spectra of protons below ~20 MeV often resemble two power laws with a relatively hard index at low energies and a softer index at higher energies. The point of intersection of the two power laws is ~3 MeV. Beginning in 2005, the low-energy index is typically –1.5, corresponding to a shock strength (compression ratio) of 2.5. We attribute these characteristics to a restricted region of the solar wind termination shock that is sporadically connected to the Voyager 1 spacecraft by the interplanetary magnetic field. The absence of significant spectral variability in 2005 suggests that Voyager 1 entered a region with minimal spatial gradients of the lowest energy ions.

Item Type:Book Section
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Cummings, A. C.0000-0002-3840-7696
Stone, E. C.0000-0002-2010-5462
Additional Information:©2005 American Institute of Physics. Issue Date: 1 August 2005. This work was supported by NASA under contract NAS7-03001. # 96.50.Fm Interplanetary shock waves # 96.60.Vg Solar particle radiation, solar wind, and solar neutrinos # 96.40.De Cosmic ray composition, energy spectra, and interactions # 96.50.Bh Solar and interplanetary electric and magnetic fields (including solar wind fields) # 07.87.+v Spaceborne and space research instruments, apparatus, and components (satellites, space vehicles, etc.)
Group:Space Radiation Laboratory
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Subject Keywords:shock waves; solar wind; cosmic ray energy spectra; interplanetary magnetic fields; space vehicles; space research
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Other Numbering System NameOther Numbering System ID
Space Radiation Laboratory2005-31
Series Name:AIP Conference Proceedings
Issue or Number:781
Classification Code:PACS: # 96.50.Fm # 96.60.Vg S# 96.40.De # 96.50.Bh # 07.87.+v
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20090918-084737847
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Official Citation:Characteristics of the Termination Shock: Insights from Voyager A. C. Cummings and E. C. Stone, AIP Conf. Proc. 781, 273 (2005), DOI:10.1063/1.2032708
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:15946
Deposited By: George Porter
Deposited On:06 Oct 2009 19:00
Last Modified:08 Nov 2021 23:23

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