Rapid energization of radiation belt electrons by nonlinear wave trapping

Y. Katoh, Y. Omura, D. Summers

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

34 Citations (Scopus)


We show that nonlinear wave trapping plays a significant role in both the generation of whistler-mode chorus emissions and the acceleration of radiation belt electrons to relativistic energies. We have performed particle simulations that successfully reproduce the generation of chorus emissions with rising tones. During this generation process we find that a fraction of resonant electrons are energized very efficiently by special forms of nonlinear wave trapping called relativistic turning acceleration (RTA) and ultra-relativistic acceleration (URA). Particle energization by nonlinear wave trapping is a universal acceleration mechanism that can be effective in space and cosmic plasmas that contain a magnetic mirror geometry.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3451-3456
Number of pages6
JournalAnnales Geophysicae
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 2008


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