My research focuses on understanding phenomena taking place within the Earth’s magnetosphere, which is the region of outer space encompassed by the Earth’s magnetic field. In particular I am involved in studies of the Earth’s Aurora, also known as the Northern and Southern Lights, which are seen at high latitudes and form ovals around the north and south magnetic poles of the Earth. The Aurora is mostly green in color in the sky and is produced by energetic negatively charged electrons from the magnetosphere which spiral down the Earth’s magnetic field and bombard oxygen and nitrogen atoms in the upper atmosphere. The same process which accelerates energetic negatively charged electrons down the Earth’s magnetic field into the ionosphere will accelerate positively charged hydrogen, helium, and oxygen ions up the magnetic field and out into space. These positively charged ions accelerating out of the ionosphere will form beams, and it is these ion beams that are the primary focus of my research. I use large computer programs written in C++ to study these ion beams. In the School of Arts and Sciences opportunities exist for student research assistants to help with the programming of these computer codes.
Ludlow, G. R., Preferential Resonant Diffusion of Upgoing Auroral O+ Ions by Parallel Propagating Ion Acoustic Waves, AGU Fall Meeting, San Francisco, December 3-7, 2012.
Ludlow, G. R., Altitude Dependent Auroral Ion Diffusion Coefficients, AGU Fall Meeting, San Francisco, December 5-9, 2011.Principle Publications
1. Heating of Upflowing Auroral H+ and O+ Beams: Results from Quasilinear Theory,J. Geophys. Res., 94, 319-328, 1989, Ludlow, G.R. and R.L. Kaufmann.
2.The Ion Cyclotron Group Delay for Source Regions Near the Plasmapause, J. Geophys. Res.,98, 7561-7670, 1993, Ludlow, G.R. and W.J. Hughes.