Previous studies demonstrated that frequency harmonic structures of fast magnetosonic (MS) waves are usually excited by the hot proton instability. Here, we present an unusual event of MS waves with more than six harmonics wavebands (n =1–6) in which their high harmonic bands are highly phase-coupled with their fundamental waveband. While calculations of the wave growth rates indicate that the local instability of the hot protons can excite the fundamental waveband (n =1) as well as only a part of wave branches in the second and third wavebands (n =2, 3), the bicoherence index adopted to analyze the phase coupling between different wavebands provides evidence that the wave–wave coupling between the low-frequency parts of MS waves can contribute to the generation of their higher harmonics (n >1). Such wave–wave coupling processes have the potential to additionally redistribute the energy of MS waves and then broaden the frequency range of wave–particle interactions, which has important implications for a better understanding of the generation, distribution, and consequence of space plasma waves.

You do not currently have access to this content.