Additional Reports:
 •  Annual Report for 2004-2005.

 •  Annual Report for 2003-2004.

 •  Annual Report for 2002-2003.

 •  Annual Report for 2001-2002.

 •  Annual Report for 2000-2001.

 •  Annual Report for 1999-2000.

 •  Annual Report for 1998-1999.

 •  Annual Report for 1997-1998.

 •  Annual Report for 1996-1997.

 •  Annual Report for 1995-1996.

 •  Annual Report for 1994-1995.





The Space Physics Group (SPG) studies the chain of energy transport from the surface of the sun to its eventual arrival in planetary stratospheres. It uses interplanetary measurements to investigate the structure of coronal mass ejections and their evolution in space. It uses Galileo observations to understand energy and mass transport in the jovian magnetosphere, and the secular variation of the jovian magnetic field. It studies the data received from the Cassini mission on its way to Saturn both to understand the physical process occurring at planetary bodies and to understand the structure and dynamics of the magnetized plasmas in interplanetary space. It uses Polar observations throughout the magnetosphere to understand how the solar wind couples to the Earth's magnetosphere and the magnetosphere couples to the ionosphere. It uses measurements from the FAST mission to determine the microprocess occurring in that coupling region. It is working with the University of Newcastle to investigate current systems and waves in the low altitude magnetosphere with the FedSat mission. It studies magnetic pulsations both to determine their origin and to use them as diagnoses of the state of the magnetosphere and it uses numerical simulations both as an extrapolation of localized data and as a tool to investigate magnetospheric behavior. The SPG is also preparing the data dissemination system for the IMPACT investigation on the STEREO mission to be launched in 2006 and is installing an array of magnetometers across North America to support the THEMIS mission to be launched in Fall 2006. The Dawn mission to Vesta and Ceres led by C. T. Russell is planned to be launched in 2006. The Space Physics Group plays a vital role in the community in disseminating the observations from current and past space missions, maintaining communications within the field, educating students of space physics through textbooks and software, interacting with visitors and training students. In the sections below we discuss the achievements of the SPG over the period July 2004 to June 2005 in the areas of instrumentation, research, dissemination of data, communication, education, visiting scientists and students.



In December 2002 the Australian government launched a microsatellite to celebrate their 100th anniversary and to demonstrate their scientific and technical prowess. The UCLA engineering team assembled, tested and delivered the magnetometer to Australia and helped install it on the spacecraft. The magnetometer continues to operate flawlessly.


The fifth project of the New Millennium Program is a three spacecraft mini-satellite mission in the Earth's magnetosphere. UCLA was selected to provide the magnetometers for this program. We have entered the design phase of this effort but the approval for completion of the project has not yet been given. This is an important project to the group because it enables us to improve and modernize our design and it will eventually provide good data for studying processes in the magnetosphere. Finally, it keeps our magnetometer group competitive for future mission opportunities.

ST5 is one of the technology projects developed by NASA as part of its New Millenium Program. The magnetometers to be flown on ST5 take the classical fluxgate design as developed by the Space Physics Group, and apply new technology to the design to reduce the power, mass and size of the magnetometer. This effort includes building smaller (50 g) sensors, and moving much of the design out of the analog domain into the digital domain. This involves the use of "surface-mount" technologies, as well as flying new 20 bit analog/digital converters. As a result of the effort, UCLA will have built and flown the next generation flight-qualified fluxgate magnetometers that will in turn be the prime candidates for flight on missions such as the "Magnetospheric Constellation." Robert J. Strangeway is the Principal Investigator for this effort. Launch of ST-5 is currently scheduled for early 2006.

Flight Unit was delivered in May 2004, and flight units 2 and 3 were delivered to NASA/GSFC in the summer of 2004. NASA also requested that UCLA provide a fourth flight unit as a spare for possible inclusion on future flight opportunities.

Ground-based Magnetometers

The SPG has developed an inexpensive, high precision and accurately timed magnetometer for terrestrial ground-based studies. These magnetometers have been deployed in four different "arrays". The first array is the Sino Magnetic Array at Low Latitudes that consists of 14 magnetometers in a 2-D array across China. The second array is a chain of seven magnetometers that are being installed by M. Moldwin along the eastern seaboard of the U.S. in the MEASURE array. The third array is the IGPP/LANL array that is intended to ultimately cover the western U.S. At present there are six operating stations in San Gabriel, CA; Los Alamos, NM; the Air Force Academy; Colorado Springs, CO; Boulder, CO; Minneapolis, MN, and at Teoloyucan, Mexico. Finally there is a loose-knit global array with sites in Jicamarca, Peru; Ethiopia; and Tlamacas, Mexico. These magnetometers have now been used in innumerable studies including sounding the density of the plasmasphere, sudden impulse propagation and Pi2 timing of substorms. A new magnetometer project named Mid-continent Magnetoseismic Chain (McMAC) has installed its first station in Glyndon, MN. McMAC will have nine new stations in the United States and Mexico to connect the Fort Churchill Line of CANOPUS Array and several existing IGPP magnetometer stations on the same meridian. This 4-year project led by Peter Chi is funded by NSF, and it will make use of the two methods of “magnetoseismology” on McMAC data to obtain the density distribution of the magnetosphere. Four new magnetometers will be installed in Canada through the collaboration with Martin Connors at Athabasca University. Finally, UCLA has been asked to build 10 “EPO” magnetometers and 10 “Observatory” magnetometers for the THEMIS project. The EPO magnetometers will be installed in schools in the northern US and the observatory magnetometer in Canada.

The electronics laboratory has developed a protyping facility in the Geology Building basement. This facility allows ideas to be rapidly taken from concept to hardware.


Heliospheric Physics

Interplanetary Coronal Mass Ejections (ICMEs) are being studied using the solar cycle long data base obtained from Pioneer Venus and using multipoint datasets obtained from chance encounters of Pioneer Venus, ISEE, NEAR, Wind and ACE spacecraft. We continue to develop methods for diagnosing ICME properties including examining plasma properties such as cool ion temperatures and declining velocity profiles indicative of flux rope expansion. This year we developed a technique of ICME identification using the sum of the magnetic and thermal pressure. We are also beginning to use this on stream interactions.

Planetary Magnetospheres

The Cassini spacecraft entered Saturn orbit in July 2004 and has been returning data continuously since that time. The analysis of the magnetometer data has been bountiful. The internal magnetic field has been characterized more accurately than previously. New phenomena have been discovered such as inward moving flux tubes and outward moving flux tubes. Ion cyclotron waves are being observed throughout the middle magnetosphere. These waves are produced by ions created from the E-ring neutral torus.

Terrestrial Magnetosphere

The Polar spacecraft has an orbit that was originally oriented with its apogee over the north pole but gravitational forces caused the orbit to process in its orbital plane so that apogee moved in 2002/2003 to the equatorial plane. We have studied these data and found many interesting phenomena including mirror mode waves, thin current sheets and multiple onset substorms.

Auroral Processes

Robert J. Strangeway is continuing to investigate the controlling factors for ionospheric outflows. Ionospheric ions contribute to the mass density of the magnetospheric plasma, thereby affecting the solar wind-magnetosphere interaction, by increasing the inertia of the plasma. In addition some of this plasma may be energized to sufficiently high energy that the plasma contributes to the ring current and partial ring current. Understanding the factors controlling ionospheric outflows is essential in developing better models of the magnetosphere. Using data from FAST, Dr. Strangeway has compared the different energy inputs to the dayside ionosphere in the polar cusp. As a result of this investigation he has developed scaling laws that relate the ion outflow fluxes to the energy inputs to the cusp-region ionosphere. In particular the scaling laws give the ion fluxes as a function of either Poynting flux or precipitating electron density. These scaling laws are intended to be used in global magnetohydrodynamic simulations, similar to relations that specify flux tube resistivity, and electron energy flux as a function of field-aligned current density.

Magnetic Pulsations

A recent focus on pulsation research is its application on remotely sensing the plasma density in the magnetosphere through the observations of field line resonance, a technique also referred to as "magnetoseismology." Peter Chi has formulated a new travel-time method for magnetoseismology that uses the observations of sudden impulse arrival time at different ground stations and satellites to infer the density distribution of magnetospheric plasma. The use of this new method on a sudden impulse shows that the inferred density distribution is in very good agreement with other independent density measurements including in situ satellite observations.

Peter Chi also collaborated with Hideaki Kawano of Kyushu University on a study that uses the observations of the Japanese Akebono satellite to verify the plasmaspheric depletion inferred from the field line resonance observations. Not only does the study confirm the field line resonance technique, we also found tangible evidence that the depletion in the plasmasphere during the September 1998 storm in fact occurred inside the new plasmapause, leading to an interesting question about the mechanisms capable of depleting half of the plasma in plasmaspheric flux tubes within several hours.

Peter Chi has also performed a statistical analysis of the ULF spectrum in the magnetosphere by using almost seven years of the magnetometer data collected by the Polar satellite. A multiple regression model for the spectral power as a function of L-value, local time, latitude, and solar wind/IMF parameters is constructed. The uniqueness of this empirical result is its good spatial coverage away from the equator that can be an improvement over the comparatively crude ULF models that radiation belt models use nowadays.


Due to our long involvement in Space Physics research, we have built a tremendous data base of measurements of the solar terrestrial system. As part of NSF's Global Environmental Measurement program and later in cooperation with the Space Physics Data System, we set up systems for the dissemination of those data to the community. We originally set up an on-line data base of IMP-8 data. We then developed a web-based distribution system for this effort. Now we have added POLAR magnetometer data to this system, as well as Wind and ACE magnetometer and solar wind data, and now provide on-line access to the ground-based magnetometer data obtained during the IMS (1977+) to the ISEE1 and 2 magnetometer data and also all the 1-second ground based data. We have been asked by the IMPACT team on the STEREO mission to provide this capability for them in the future.


The Space Physics Group has taken the lead in fostering communication in the discipline as part of the NSF's Global Environment Modeling (GEM) program as well as for the American Geophysical Union's (AGU) Space Physics and Aeronomy section. The electronic newsletters for GEM and SPA are both run by Peter Chi. In June 2003 Bob began a three year term as Chairman of the GEM Steering Committee. Peter Chi co-convened a Chapman Conference on magnetospheric ULF waves that gathered over 100 ULF scientists in San Diego during a week in March 2005, when many scientists and students at IGPP also participated.


There are four major developments in education from the Space Physics Group. First there is its development of the interactive Space Physics educational software, also known as Xspace. We continue to update and distribute this package. Some of the exercises have been converted to JAVA and can now be used over the internet. Second, we continue to participate in the International Space Physics Education Consortium that is fostering and coordinating computer-based instruction in Space Physics. Third, C. T. Russell is the Director of UCLA's branch of the California Space Grant activities. Fourth, the book Introduction to Space Physics, edited by M. G. Kivelson and C. T. Russell continues to sell well. In fact, it is now in its third printing. This year we developed a set of solar physics exercises that complement the earlier space physics series.


In September H. Kawano (Kyushu University) visited for a month. Later Martin Connors dropped by for a week.


During the period 2004/2005 there were ten graduate students: D. Baird, M. Cowee, G. Fowler, Yasong Ge, L. Jian, E. Jensen, J. Leisner, R. Troy, Z. J. Yu, and H. Wei.


The SPG staff consists of students, engineering staff, programmers, computer operators and student assistants, clerical help and researchers. The student researchers have been listed above. The research staff are R. J. Strangeway and P. J. Chi. The other staff members are as follows:

J. D. Means, D. Dearborn, W. Greer, B. Gonzalez, and D. Pierce with C. Selski, B. Weise, and J. So, as undergraduate assistants.

Nina Pereira, Marjorie Sowmendran

Louise Lee, Xinping Liu, Blaise Kuo Tiong

Computer Operations
Bruce Rezin, Anupa Srinivasan

Student Assistants
Sean Harnett, H. Morita, I-Hsuan Wu, Sol Eun


C. T., Russell, New horizons in planetary magnetospheres, presented at the 35th COSPAR Scientific Assembly, Paris, France, July, 2004.

C. T., Russell, The Earth’s Magnetosphere, presented at Sun-Earth Connection Physics: The GeoImpact of CMEs, CIRs, and Ordinary Solar Wind, Merida, Mexico, November, 2004.

C. T., Russell, Introduction to the Physics of Collisionless Shocks, Fourth Annual Astrophysics Conference, Physics of Collisionless Shocks, Palm Springs, CA, February, 2005.

C. T., Russell, Ion cyclotron waves in planetary magnetospheres, presented at AGU Chapman Conference on Magnetospheric ULF Waves, San Diego, March, 2005.

C. T., Russell, The structure of planetary foreshocks, presented at European Geosciences Union General Assembly, Vienna, April, 2005.

C. T., Russell, J. S. Leisner, C. Bertucci, M. Dougherty, and B. T. Tsurutani, Plasma waves and turbulence at Saturn: Cassini initial results, presented at European Geosciences Union General Assembly, Vienna, April, 2005.

C. T., Russell, The Geospace Environment Modeling Program: Not Business as Usual, presented at Joint CEDAR-GEM Workshop, Santa Fe, NM, June, 2005.

P. J. Chi, C. T. Russell, M. B. Moldwin, and E. Zesta, “Monitoring Magnetospheric Plasma Density by Coordinated Magnetic Stations,” presented at First Asian Oceania Geosciences Society (AOGS) General Assembly, Singapore, July 2004.

P. J. Chi and C. T. Russell, “Development of the ULF indices for space weather research,” presented at First Asian Oceania Geosciences Society (AOGS) General Assembly, Singapore, July 2004.

P. J. Chi, “Magnetoseismology: Two methods for sounding the mass density of the magnetosphere,” Southwest Research Institute, San Antonio, Texas, November 4, 2004.

P. J. Chi, “Magnetoseismology: Two methods of magnetospheric sounding,” Space Science National Central University, Chung-Li, Taiwan, January 11, 2005.

P. J. Chi, “Issues and recent advances in travel-time magnetoseismology,” Chapman Conference on Magnetospheric ULF Waves, San Diego, California, March 2005.

R. J., Strangeway, “Wave propagation through the collisional ionosphere, Chapman Conference on Magnetospheric ULF Waves,” San Diego, 2005.

R. J., Strangeway, “Multi-scale physics in the auroral acceleration region,” Abstract IAGA2005-A-01403, IAGA 2005 Scientific Assembly, Toulouse, France, 2005.

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