RBSP/ECT - Radiation Belts Storm Probe / Energetic Particle Composition and Thermal Plasma Suite

Plasmapause Test Particle Simulation

Plasmapause Simulations for the Entire Van Allen Probes Mission (2012-Present)

Here you can download the output of a very simple plasmapause test particle (PTP) simulation that reproduces Van Allen Probes plasmapause observations to within 0.4 RE [Goldstein et al., 2014b]. The PTP model represents the time-varying global plasmapause as an ensemble of cold test particles subject only to ExB drift. The convection electric (E) field is driven by solar wind data and the Kp geomagnetic index.

The plasmapause model results are available from the entire Van Allen Probes mission, in monthly (31-day) simulation runs, at the links below.

Each simulation run download includes month's worth of ASCII output files, a movie of the output with simulated flythroughs of the Van Allen Probes, and a ReadMe file describing how to use the ASCII files.

Plasmapause Test Particle (PTP) Simulation: DOWNLOAD

How to Use PTP Sim Results (PDF)



  • Goldstein, J., M. F. Thomsen, and A. DeJong (2014a), In situ signatures of residual plasmaspheric plumes, J. Geophys. Res., 119, 4706, doi:10.1002/2014JA019953.

  • Goldstein, J., S. De Pascuale, C. Kletzing, W. Kurth, K. J. Genestreti, R. M. Skoug, B. A. Larsen, L. M. Kistler, C. Mouikis, H. Spence (2014b), Simulation of Van Allen Probes plasmapause encounters, J. Geophys. Res., doi:10.1002/2014JA020252.

  • Los Alamos National Laboratory The Aerospace Corporation
    Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics
    Southwest Research Institute
    University of New Hampshire