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Anomalous width variation of rarefactive ion acoustic solitary waves in the context of auroral plasmas

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Author(s): S. S. Ghosh | G. S. Lakhina

Journal: Nonlinear Processes in Geophysics
ISSN 1023-5809

Volume: 11;
Issue: 2;
Start page: 219;
Date: 2004;
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ABSTRACT
The presence of dynamic, large amplitude solitary waves in the auroral regions of space is well known. Since their velocities are of the order of the ion acoustic speed, they may well be considered as being generated from the nonlinear evolution of ion acoustic waves. However, they do not show the expected width-amplitude correlation for K-dV solitons. Recent POLAR observations have actually revealed that the low altitude rarefactive ion acoustic solitary waves are associated with an increase in the width with increasing amplitude. This indicates that a weakly nonlinear theory is not appropriate to describe the solitary structures in the auroral regions. In the present work, a fully nonlinear analysis based on Sagdeev pseudopotential technique has been adopted for both parallel and oblique propagation of rarefactive solitary waves in a two electron temperature multi-ion plasma. The large amplitude solutions have consistently shown an increase in the width with increasing amplitude. The width-amplitude variation profile of obliquely propagating rarefactive solitary waves in a magnetized plasma have been compared with the recent POLAR observations. The width-amplitude variation pattern is found to fit well with the analytical results. It indicates that a fully nonlinear theory of ion acoustic solitary waves may well explain the observed anomalous width variations of large amplitude structures in the auroral region.

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