The Los Alamos Chapman Conference on Magnetospheric Substorms and Related Plasma Processes can be considered the fourth in a series devoted to magnetospheric substorms, after the Moscow (1971), Houston (1972), and Bryce Mountain (1974) meetings. The main motivation for organizing the Los Alamos Conference was that magnetospheric substorm studies have advanced enough to the point of bringing experimenters, analysts and theorists together to discuss major substorm problems with special emphasis on theoretical interpretations in terms of plasma processes. In spite of an extremely heavy schedule from 8:30 A.M. to 10:00 P.M., every session was conducted in an enjoyable and spirited atmosphere. In fact, during one of the afternoons that we had put aside for relaxation, John Winckler led a group of the attendees in a climb to the ceremonial cave of a prehistoric Indian ruin at Bandelier National Monument, near Los Alamos under a crystal blue sky and a bright New Mexico sun. There, they danced as the former dwellers of the pueblo had, perhaps as an impromptu evocation of a magnetospheric event.
I. Interplanetary Magnetic Field and the Magnetosphere.- The Control of the Magnetopause by the Interplanetary Magnetic Field.- Polar Cap Variations and the Interplanetary Magnetic Field.- IMF Changes and Polar-Cap Electric Fields and Currents.- Interplanetary Magnetic Field Changes and the Magnetotail.- Transport Mechanisms at the Magnetopause.- The Configuration of Dayside Merging.- Dayside Aurora, A Signature of the Dayside Cusp and Correlation with Substorm Currents.- II. Magnetosphere-Ionosphere Coupling.- Dynamics of the Magnetospheric Plasma.- Large-Scale Characteristics of Birkeland Currents.- The Auroral Electrojets.- Studies of Currents and Electric Fields in the Auroral Zone Ionosphere using Radar Auroral Backscatter.- Electric Fields and Currents in the Earth's Magnetosphere.- Magnetic Substorm Characteristics Described by Magnetic Potential Maps for 26-28 March 1976.- III. Plasma Processes in the Magnetosphere.- The Role of Microturbulence on Collisionless Reconnection.- Macroinstabilities of the Magnetotail.- Substorms and Magnetospheric Energy Transfer Processes.- Pulsations at the Substorm Onset.- Physical Processes for the Onset of Magnetospheric Substorms.- IV. Ring Current Formation.- Observations of Plasma Injection.- The Physics of Plasma Injection Events.- Ring Curent Composition and Sources.- Relationship Between Substorms and Storms.- V. Substorm Mechanisms.- What is a Magnetospheric Substorm?.- The Expansive Phase of the Magnetospheric Substorm.- Externally Driven Magnetic Reconnection.- A Dynamical Model for the Onset of Magnetospheric Substorms.- Solar Wind Velocity, Interplanetary Magnetic Field and Ground State of the Magnetosphere.- Generation of Field Aligned Current During Substorm.- VI. Substorm Processes in the Magnetotail.- Plasma Flow in the Magnetotail and its Implications for Substorm Theories.- Observations on Plasma Sheet Dynamics During Magnetospheric Substorms.- Energetic Particle Bursts in the Earth's Magnetotail.- Magnetic Variations During Substorms.- Index of Names.- Index of Subjects.