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Particle populations in Mercury's magnetosphere
KTH, Superseded Departments, Alfvén Laboratory. KTH, School of Electrical Engineering (EES), Space and Plasma Physics.
2001 (English)In: Planetary and Space Science, ISSN 0032-0633, E-ISSN 1873-5088, Vol. 49, no 14-15, 1643-1653 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Observations by Mariner 10 during its first and third flybys showed that Mercury possesses an intrinsic magnetic field resulting in a small magnetosphere that can keep the solar wind from directly interacting with the planet's surface under usual conditions. Since Mercury occupies a large fraction of its magnetosphere, regions of trapped charged particles in the inner magnetosphere, the plasmasphere and the energetic radiation belts, would all be absent. During the first flyby, energetic particle bursts were detected and interpreted as hermean substroms analogous to the terrestrial magnetosphere. Moreover, during this flyby, ULF waves and field-aligned currents were detected in the data. Earth-based observations of Na, K, and Ca populations in the exosphere strongly suggest the existence of dynamic magnetospheric processes at high latitudes interacting with the planet's surface.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2001. Vol. 49, no 14-15, 1643-1653 p.
Keyword [en]
sodium exosphere, atmosphere, surface, acceleration, photoemission, mariner-10, discovery, substorms
National Category
Fusion, Plasma and Space Physics
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-21126ISI: 000172361200021OAI: diva2:339823
QC 20100525 NR 20140804Available from: 2010-08-10 Created: 2010-08-10 Last updated: 2012-03-19Bibliographically approved

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