Table of Contents
Dataset Papers in Science
Volume 2014, Article ID 684305, 13 pages
Dataset Paper

ECLAT Cluster Spacecraft Magnetotail Plasma Region Identifications (2001–2009)

1Space Research Institute, Austrian Academy of Sciences, 8042 Graz, Austria
2Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of Leicester, LE1 7RH Leicester, UK

Received 25 November 2013; Accepted 18 February 2014; Published 12 August 2014

Academic Editors: M. Iizima and K. Kudela

Copyright © 2014 P. D. Boakes et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The European Space Agency’s four-spacecraft Cluster mission has been observing the Earth’s dynamical magnetotail region since early 2001. The magnetotail, and in particular the hot trapped plasma sheet, is a critical region in the coupled Sun-Earth system. Changes in the solar wind have direct influence on the properties and dynamical processes occurring in this region, which in turn directly influence operational near-Earth space, the upper atmosphere, and even induce large-scale currents in the ground. As part of the European Cluster Assimilation Technology (ECLAT) project, a magnetotail plasma region dataset has been produced to facilitate magnetospheric research and further our understanding of the important processes linking the solar wind-magnetospheric-ionospheric system. The dataset consists of a comprehensive list of plasma regions encountered in the nightside magnetosphere of the Earth by each of the four Cluster spacecraft in the years 2001–2009. The regions identified are those where major energy transport/conversion processes take place and are important regions for system level science. Characteristic averaged parameters describing the behavior of each region are provided for further understanding. The dataset facilitates the use of the large repository of Cluster data by the wider scientific community.