High‐Frequency Wave Generation in Magnetotail Reconnection: Linear Dispersion Analysis
Plasma and wave measurements from the NASA Magnetospheric Multiscale mission are presented for magnetotail reconnection events on 3 July and 11 July 2017. Linear dispersion analyses were performed using distribution functions comprising up to six drifting bi‐Maxwellian distributions. In both events electron crescent‐shaped distributions are shown to be responsible for upper hybrid waves near the X‐line. In an adjacent location within the 3 July event a monodirectional field‐aligned electron beam drove parallel‐propagating beam‐mode waves. In the 11 July event an electron distribution consisting of a drifting core and two crescents was shown to generate upper‐hybrid and beam‐mode waves at three different frequencies, explaining the observed broadband waves. Multiple harmonics of the upper hybrid waves were observed but cannot be explained by the linear dispersion analysis since they result from nonlinear beam interactions.