Harlan E. Spence

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Recent analysis of satellite data obtained during the 9 October 2012 geomagnetic storm identified the development of peaks in electron phase space density, which are compelling evidence for local electron acceleration in the heart of the outer radiation belt, but are inconsistent with acceleration by inward radial diffusive transport. However, the precise(More)
The Van Allen radiation belts contain ultrarelativistic electrons trapped in Earth's magnetic field. Since their discovery in 1958, a fundamental unanswered question has been how electrons can be accelerated to such high energies. Two classes of processes have been proposed: transport and acceleration of electrons from a source population located outside(More)
The MIT Faculty has made this article openly available. Please share how this access benefits you. Your story matters. Abstract. The Cosmic Ray Telescope for the Effects of Radiation (CRaTER) on the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) characterizes the radiation environment to be experienced by humans during future lunar missions. CRaTER measures the effects(More)
[1] We present an analysis of the alpha to proton solar wind abundance ratio (A He) during a period characterized by significant large size scale density fluctuations, focusing on an event in which the proton and alpha enhancements are anti-correlated. In a recent study using 11 years (1995 – 2005) of solar wind observations from the Wind spacecraft, N. M.(More)
Since their discovery more than 50 years ago, Earth's Van Allen radiation belts have been considered to consist of two distinct zones of trapped, highly energetic charged particles. The outer zone is composed predominantly of megaelectron volt (MeV) electrons that wax and wane in intensity on time scales ranging from hours to days, depending primarily on(More)
We present observations of the radiation belts from the Helium Oxygen Proton Electron and Magnetic Electron Ion Spectrometer particle detectors on the Van Allen Probes satellites that illustrate the energy dependence and L shell dependence of radiation belt enhancements and decays. We survey events in 2013 and analyze an event on 1 March in more detail. The(More)
[1] Recent modeling efforts have yielded varying and conflicting results regarding the possibility that Earth's magnetosphere is able to shield energetic particles of >10 MeV at lunar distances. This population of particles consists of galactic cosmic rays as well as energetic particles that are accelerated by solar flares and coronal mass ejections. The(More)
Van Allen radiation belts are typically two zones of energetic particles encircling the Earth separated by the slot region. How the outer radiation belt electrons are accelerated to relativistic energies remains an unanswered question. Recent studies have presented compelling evidence for the local acceleration by very-low-frequency (VLF) chorus waves.(More)
The dipole configuration of the Earth's magnetic field allows for the trapping of highly energetic particles, which form the radiation belts. Although significant advances have been made in understanding the acceleration mechanisms in the radiation belts, the loss processes remain poorly understood. Unique observations on 17 January 2013 provide detailed(More)