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Physics of the Earth’s Space Environment

An Introduction



Pages: 513
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Recommend to library


Paperback - 9783642059797

30 November 2010


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Ebook - 9783642971235

06 December 2012


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This book was written for readers interested in learning about the disciplines, methods and results of space research, perhaps because they happened upon the field during the course of their higher education or professional...

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This book was written for readers interested in learning about the disciplines, methods and results of space research, perhaps because they happened upon the field during the course of their higher education or professional career, or perhaps because they simply feel an urge to know more about the space environment of the Earth. The present monograph is based on lectures cover­ ing the same topic, which have been held regularly over the past years at the University of Bonn. Like the lecture series, the book is directed at a relatively broad group of students and interested laypersons, the only prerequisite being knowledge of fundamental physics and mathematics, as usually acquired from introductory college courses in science or engineering curricula. More specific knowledge is derived in association with each phenomenon considered. These derivations are kept as simple as possible, adhering to the principle that, when conflicts arise, physical insight is preferable to mathematical precision. As a rule, I strived to avoid the trite phrase 'It may be easily shown that . . . ' and tried to present all derivations in readily verifiable steps, even if this may seem somewhat tedious to the more advanced readers. Also serving clarity and insight are the many illustrations, which do indeed often say more than 'a thousand words'. Our knowledge of the Earth's space environment has grown exponentially during the last few decades and an attempt to cover all aspects of the field would extend way beyond the scope of an introductory text.

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The first advanced undergraduate textbook that treats the terrestrial space environment ranging from the upper atmosphere to the interplanetary medium on the same footing

1. Introduction
1.1 Definitions and Constraints
1.2 Scope and Organization of the Material
1.3 Brief History of Space Research
2. Neutral Upper Atmosphere
2.1 State Parameters of Gases and their Gas Kinetic Interpretation
2.2 Height Profiles of the State Parameters
2.3 Barospheric Density Distribution
2.4 Exospheric Density Distribution
3. Absorption of Solar Radiation Energy
3.1 Origin and Characteristics of Solar Radiation
3.2 Extinction of Solar Radiation in the Upper Atmosphere
3.3 Heating and Temperature Profile
3.4 Thermospheric Winds
3.5 Atmospheric Waves
4. Ionosphere
4.1 Height Profile of Ionospheric State Parameters
4.2 Ionization Production and Loss
4.3 Density Profile in the Lower Ionosphere
4.4 Density Profile in the Upper Ionosphere
4.5 Density Maximum and Ionospheric Time Constants
4.6 Systematic Variations of the Ionization Density
4.7 Radio waves in the Ionosphere
5. Magnetosphere
5.1 Fundamentals
5.2 The Geomagnetic Field Near the Earth
5.3 Charged Particle Motion in the Geomagnetic Field
5.4 Particle Populations in the Inner Magnetosphere
5.5 The Distant Geomagnetic Field
5.6 Particle Populations in the Outer Magnetosphere
5.7 Magnetoplasma Waves in the Magnetosphere
6. Interplanetary Medium
6.1 The Solar Wind
6.2 Interplanetary Magnetic Field
6.3 Magnetoplasma Waves in the Interplanetary Medium
6.4 Modification of the Solar Wind by the Bow Shock
6.5 Interaction of the Solar Wind with the Interstellar Medium
6.6 Energetic Particles in Interplanetary Space
7. Absorption and Dissipation of Solar Wind Energy
7.1 Topology of the Polar Upper Atmosphere
7.2 Electric Fields and Plasma Convection
7.3 Ionospheric Conductivity and Currents
7.4 Aurorae
7.5 Neutral Atmospheric Effects
7.6 Energy Transfer from Solar Wind to Magnetosphere
8. Geospheric Storms
8.1 Magnetic Storms
8.2 Auroral Substorms
8.3 Magnetospheric Substorms
8.4 Thermospheric Storms
8.5 Ionospheric Storms
8.6 The Sun as the Origin of Geospheric Storms
8.7 Disturbance Effects on Technological Systems
A. Formulas, Tables and Derivations
A.l Selected Mathematical Formulas
A.2 Physical Parameters of the Earth
A.3 Planetary Data
A.4 Model Atmosphere
A.5 Diffusion Equation for Gases
A.6 Derivation of the Momentum Balance Equation
A.7 Energy Balance Equation of an Adiabatic Gas Flow
A.8 Bernoulh Equation
A.9 Rankine-Hugoniot Equations
A.10 Maxwell Equations
A. 11 Curvature of a Dipole Field Line
A. 12 Gradient Drift Velocity
A. 13 System of Equations for Ideal Magnetoplasmadynamics
A.13.1 Balance Equations of a Magnetoplasma
A. 13.2 Maxwell Equations and the Generahzed Ohm’s Law
A. 13.3 Validity Test of the Approximations
A. 14 Two Theorems of Magnetoplasmadynamics
A. 15 Magnetoplasma Waves
A.15.1 Simplification of the System of Equations
A.15.2 Wave Propagation Parallel to a Magnetic Field
A. 15.3 Wave Propagation Perpendicular to a Magnetic Field
A.15.4 Validity Test of the Approximations
A.16 Plasma Instabilities
B. Figure and Table References.
From the reviews:
"This book is aimed towards readers who are interested in space research. The prerequisite for a full and beneficial reading is a knowledge of fundamental physics and mathematics, a knowledge that is usually acquired in undergraduate studies in science or engineering. These reviewers believe that this book will be quite useful for a general physics teacher who wants to find new applications of fundamental physics. … The figures, illustrations and typesetting of the book are of good quality as usually with Springer … ." (Fernande Grandjean, Physicalia Magazine, Vol. 28 (1), 2006)
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