Bonn 2010 – wissenschaftliches Programm

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EP: Fachverband Extraterrestrische Physik

EP 10: Planets and Small Bodies III

EP 10.4: Vortrag

Mittwoch, 17. März 2010, 14:45–15:00, AKM

Energetic particle injection events in the Kronian magnetosphere — •Anna L. Müller1,2, Joachim Saur1, Norbert Krupp2, and Stamatios M. Krimigis31Institute of Geophysics and Meteorology, University of Cologne, Cologne, Germany — 2Max Planck Institute for Solar System Research, Katlenburg-Lindau, Germany — 3Applied Physics Laboratory, Johns Hopkins University, Laurel, Maryland, USA

We study the azimuthal plasma velocity in Saturn's magnetosphere between 3 and 13 Saturn radii (Rs) by analysing energetic particle injection events using data of the Magnetospheric Imaging Instrument (MIMI) onboard the Cassini spacecraft in orbit around Saturn. Due to the magnetic drifts, the injected particles at various energies begin to disperse and leave an imprint in the electron as well as in the ion energy spectrograms of the MIMI instrument. The shape of these profiles strongly depends on the azimuthal velocity distribution of the magnetospheric plasma and the age of the injection event. Comparison of theoretically computed dispersion profiles with observed ones enables us to characterize the azimuthal flow of the plasma. The measured flow profile clearly shows that the plasma subcorotates with velocities as low as 80 % of full corotation at radial distances between 8 Rs to 13 Rs. With knowledge of the flow profile and the ages of each injection event we can calculate the location where the energetic particles were injected into the inner magnetosphere. The night and morning sector of the Kronian magnetosphere are preferred regions for the generation of hot plasma injections.

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