The effect of local perturbations of the geomagnetic field on cosmic ray cutoff rigidities at Jungfraujoch and Kiel
We have investigated the effect of local perturbations of the geomagnetic field on the vertical cosmic ray cutoff rigidities at Jungfraujoch and Kiel as representative mid-latitude neutron monitor stations. The main, effective, and Störmer vertical cutoff rigidities and their changes were determined by utilizing the trajectory-tracing technique in a magnetic field which is modeled as a simple dipole field to which the disturbance field is superposed. It was found that the cosmic ray cutoff rigidities are most sensitive to variations of the z component of the geomagnetic field at geomagnetic latitudes -20°<Λ<+30° and at longitudes within 90° to the east of these northern hemisphere stations. Furthermore, cutoff rigidity variations at Kiel are predominantly due to changes of the geomagnetic field within geocentric distances 2.5RE<r<6RE, whereas at Jungfraujoch changes in cutoff rigidities are caused almost exclusively by magnetic disturbances within 1RE<r<4.5RE. For both locations the dependence of the main, effective, and Störmer vertical cutoff rigidities on the radial, latitudinal and longitudinal structure of the magnetic perturbations is given explicitly. The results are discussed with respect to the theory by Treiman (1953) describing the effect of a ring current on cosmic ray cutoff rigidities. It is also shown that for the analysis of the characteristic properties of the correlation between cutoff rigidity variations and specific geomagnetic perturbations the rigidity corresponding to the first ``discontinuity band'' of the rigidity spectrum is an extremely useful parameter.